Opening the eyes of intelligence
Q : … what I would like to say is how often the ‘closed systems’ you talk about are only apparently closed; … if texts considered sacred are accepted in a literal sense and without criticism they become ‘dogmas’, but when we interpret them in different ways do they open doors belonging to the Initiatory Tradition?
A: Dear friend, what you say is not shared by great western as well as eastern scientific and philosophical minds. They feel the dangers of devotional culture, which likes to interpret the interpretation interpreted by the first interpreters; they have never even seen what they talk about and they often contradict each other (see Peter, who furiously attacked Paul [the Gentle] and considered him as an heretic because he didn’t practice circumcision; this has been suitably censored by the Catholic church).
Many people have accepted the word coined by Jung, who called it ‘onanistic culture’. We’d say mental masturbation. At least we need to clarify the difference between ‘devotional attitude’ and ‘Mystic spirit’, in order to give our imagination a limit.
As far as the sulfur and the primordial Fire are concerned, it wasn’t the result of imagination, but the access key to the identity of Melkizedec, the Ancient of the Days. Jesus expressed some aspects of it (the sulfur) as John says:
“The I Am”, Jesus Christ, is the Priest par excellence like Melkizedec (cfr. Psal. 109, 4 and Heb. 7). For the second time here (the first was in the Prologue, 1, 17) John gives Jesus the appellative of Christ = the Anointed = King and Priest. The central point of the Sephirotic Tree, Tiphereth, resumes the whole Tree and the same happens in this prayer by Jesus. It can be divided into three parts. The first (vv. 1-8) where He looks up in the Sky (to get in direct contact with the Kether – like in the Jewish prayer of thanks berakah) and asks for his own glorification because he has ‘accomplished the Work’. He has manifested (let know) the Name (I Am) = Daath, of the Father = Kether to the men of the world = Malkuth.
Some people think that studying the alchemic-hermetic symbolism is a boring rhetorical exercise. I wonder, then, what else you can discuss in a truly initiatory gathering. Unless we confuse silly jokes with spiritualism, I think that the only task of an initiatory meeting is to study the mysterial subject, starting from the Mysteries themselves. Beginners know that suggestions keep them stuck and they need to open their eyes, although not the physical eyes. Beginners as well know that we need to open the eyes of mind and conscience.
This is not enough in order to be true initiates, though. Indeed, we stay eternal apprentices until, by working on ourselves, we can open (also) the eyes of the heart, seat of the intelligence of the soul.
The union of the Three fires (spirit, subtle mind and cardiac conscience) is the igneous characteristic of the Initiate. The alchemic sulfur is the metaphor of their combustible. It must be found and applied as a method.
by Athos A. Altomonte