Aor and the Language of the Birds

September 15th, 2007

Continuing on the theme of the last post, another diagram from Vandenbroeck’s Al-Kemi.

“I worked up a construct [below] to show as clearly as possible the qualities which characterize the predominance of each of the three alchemical principles: heat for Sulphur, humidity for Mercury, coldness for Salt. This structure shows the principles and elements held in a network of relations between trinity and quaternary, and ruled by the permutations of two pairs. Completed to the show polarized duality manifesting a vertex of puncticular and irrational oneness, this pyramid of Pythagorean number forms the renowned Tetractys. An exaltation of the four elements reveals a quintessence as basis of the Pentactys, emblem of manifestation traditionally associated with the five senses” (p118).

Pythagorean pyramid

Click image for larger version.

“Neither formulas, mechanisms, or processes had any bearing upon the science that concerned us. The presentation would be a gesture of knowing intuition, so that the only dependable representation would be an intuitive perception of form — as number, color, sound, volume, or plane-image. It would be an inscription into the fixed salt, not a notation onto memory” (p228-9).

“Aor maintained that the material process of the alchemical opus are banal, that they occur at every moment in every laboratory in plain view of everyone. There are no special or hidden chemical events, and the alchemical processes are of the most usual sort, so common that they escape notice, as is repeated again and again with regard to materia prima in alchemical texts. The difference in the esoteric manipulation lies entirely in the apprehension of the event: it is a matter of perception, of vision” (p147).

Says Aor, “The Oeuvre is not the discovery of a technique, it is nothing of the sort, it is the perception of an existing process. It is the perception that is the object of study and prayer. That is the theoretical part, and after that comes the practice, the proper gesture in matter and time. The perception of a process, the vision of an evolution, that is the first aim of the scientist. Prima materia into Materia prima is a constant process of nature, it is mindless, and therefore beyond the cerebral cortex. That is really the only difficulty. There is no use addressing the analytic mind with Hermetic language; it can do very little with it. Therefore the language of the birds, not spoken, only heard” (p60).

6 Responses to “Aor and the Language of the Birds”

  1. Mirco Says:

    What Aor says here epitomizes well the entire spirit of the Hermetic Work. First comes the proper perception (the one that goes through objects and sees the forms), then one proceeds with the practical work, aka the proper GESTURE in time. Without a preliminary emendation of perception, it is simply impossible even to start. In the Oeuvre, the experimenter is integral part of the experiment, and must therefore be carefully prepared for the practice in the lab.

    PS. Just a suggestion: you may want to add a link to
    The very apt espression “Language of the Birds” is ubiquitous throughout hermetic literature of all ages and places (see for instance Attar’s book -Conference of the Birds-).

  2. Greg Pass Says:

    Thanks, Mirco — I added the link.

    Also, thanks for recommending this book. I “remembered” many things while reading it. To be placed on my shelf between Oblomov and Voyage to Arcturus.

  3. Mirco Says:

    Greg, you are quite welcome.

    The fact that you “remembered” many things as you read it is a good sign: it simply means you were ready for them. If, from time to time, you remove this amazing book from the shelves, and go once again through some of its critical passages (particularly the diagrams), you”ll find that new stuff will emerge (assuming, of course, that YOU have changed in-between).

    Anyway, I wish to leave with a final note: Andre & Goldian have continued their hermetic search. Some of their findings can be gleaned from Andre’s only “novel”, Breaking Through (1996, I believe). Therein one can read how to “enter” the STONE and meet the FIXED SALT.

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  6. karasu koga Tengu Says:

    The language of the bird.
    I feel have no place in this time, balance the scales an turn the page ,For I have not seen my kin in a long time. parade contracts still remain to be found ,or not :p Random , an Chaotic /^>. fun fun

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