Thursday, April 19, 2007

Sacred Alchemy -- Real Chemistry

Today we are going to begin to unravel and talk about sacred chemistry. And we are going to talk about Mr. Gurdjieff's exposition of chemistry in a way that will allow you to understand more about everything.

The first element in the periodic table in any chemistry textbook is Hydrogen.

Mr. Gurdjieff had a special Alchemy, where he used the terms Hydrogen, Oxygen, Carbon and Nitrogen to stand for the three forces or Trimurti (three aspects of God known as Shiva, Vishnu and Brahma -- also known as the holy Trinity: Father, Son and Holy Ghost or Holy Spirit -- also known as the three forces or Gunas; which Gurdjieff variously called active, passive and reconciling or neutralizing, or sometimes various other wordings).

The term Hydrogen he used to indicate a Matter when it was being talked about simply as a matter without regard to which of the three forces was running through it.

We are going to investigate this special chemistry, this "alchemy" and its terminology -- we are going to explain in simple terms what many long-time practitioners of the "Work" do not understand, because they have followed the line of tradition and of the practice of the Work without understanding some of its most precious and profound concepts which form its so to say, backbone. Without this backbone, men stay only chronologically in the Work, and their movement qualitatively towards their aim is glacially slow. As Mr. Gurdjieff would put it, you can work for 300 years in this way and get nowhere but walking in circles with a circumference of 11 miles. Just long enough for you do not know that you are turning, because no one has two legs of equal length -- that means that when you walk straight you turn on your shorter leg -- clockwise or counterclockwise it doesn't matter. That crap about clockwise on the northern hemisphere and counterclockwise on the southern hemisphere is baloney. The fact that your legs are not equal in length accounts for the strange turning in the woods that fascinates so many storytellers when they talk about finding a path and holy crap, it's their own footsteps from hours ago.

So back to our study:


Hydrogen has one electron. We will talk about its nucleus later. Right now all that matters is the fact that it has so to say, one nucleus and one electron. It can't get any more simple.

HYDROGEN FORMS 88% OF ALL OF THE MATTER IN THE ENTIRE UNIVERSE, MOSTLY AS SINGLE BACHELORS -- in other words, Hydrogen was the first element of Creation.

It is the most abundant element in the Universe; it is the element that fuels the Sun and other stars; as a gas, it is the lightest of all gases, and it bonds to other elements in its own unique fashion.

Hydrogen really likes oxygen. Hydrogen really digs oxygen. Hydrogen is really into oxygen, and oxygen is into hydrogen right back. They like to hook up. When they hook up, they hook up usually as a threesome. It's OK, think sexually (or sensually, if you prefer)

An aside -- chemistry is sex; valence is sexual proclivity; atoms bond into families called molecules.

Hydrogen is named because it likes oxygen so much. The name is derived from the Greek words Hydro meaning water, and genes, meaning "forming". Hydrogen and oxygen get along so nicely as a trio that formula for water is H2O. Two hydrogen atoms bond through electron valence bonding with one oxygen atom and they form water.

Hydrogen bonds influence the structure of all living things because the double helix of DNA is held together by hydrogen bonds. The same is true of the structure of all the protein in our body. We will stop there with the chemical trivia facts. They are all confirmable by any chemistry textbook. We will work slowly. When I read an excellent book I read very slowly. Perhaps I might read a sentence a day, or a paragraph or I might read the same book extra fast all day long. It is just like eating food. In fact it is eating food. It's just that the food is in the form of meme's -- that is, ideas. I eat until I am full and then I digest. If I catch myself reading over and my attention has wandered or slipped away, I do one of several things: I go back to the place where my attention wandered and I bring it back; I close the book for the day, or at least for the time being; I try to remember where my attention lost the track and why. The answer can be anything -- maybe I am hungry.

We will continue later. You have lots to think about. Please, as they say in the racing business: "gentlemen, start your engines." Please feel free to join me at any time.


stu said...

At the beginning of "Beelzebub's Tales to His Grandson", Mr.Gurdjieff gives some friendly advice: "Read each of my written expositions thrice,
Firstly- at least as you have already become mechanized to read all your contemporary books and news papers.
Secondly-as if you were reading aloud to another person.
And only thirdly- try and fathom the gist of my writings.
Only then will you be able to count upon forming your own impartial judgement , proper to yourself alone on my writings."
I have used this technique not only in reading Mr. Gurdjieff's works but in taking online courses. The affect it has had is that by the third reading , I have completely cleared my mind of inteferring "noise" from the t.v., my girlfriend, worries about everyday concerns (the bills, what time the music store closes, ect...). I actually read aloud on the second reading and I'm beginning to think my dog is getting smarter.
In this post you seem to explain a more practical metod of "digestion" that is along the same line .

rlnyc said...

Dear Stu,

This is very good stuff. That you have taken Mr. Gurdjieff's advice and utilized it elsewhere shows that you have followed another of his axioms, which states that his ideas must be glued to oneself, and in the correct order so that they can form a kind of transmission device, like a radio.

The parts of a radio might be very pretty to play with, but only put together correctly will they allow you to receive and perhaps transmits signals from far away.

In his admonition to read his writings three times, he first advocates that they be read by the ordinary consciousness, which takes in the surface meanings and prepares the organism for the next step.

In the second reading you create a feedback loop by reading aloud; you are reading to another person, in fact that other person is yourself. It goes out your mouth and into your ears and then becomes part of the oral tradition. This allows it to bypass the conscious mind in part, and reach deeper parts of the centers in the limbic brain and subconscious. This prepares one for the third step.

In the third step, one tries to cognate and ponder while assimilating the gist or tzism of the thing.

This is also analgous to creating a laser in the attention.

Ordinary light is like a group of people running around in a field, hither and thither just as they please. This is the first reading, where the attention is scattered and allowed to form associations, driven by the formatory Center.

A flashlight uses a kind of focusing screen to direct the light in a single direction. This is like people now being on a sidewalk, where they are walk in with some order, but still dispersed. The flashlight only goes so far before it scatters, but at close range it illuminates better than a lightbulb. This is the second reading.

A laser is like a light which has been conscripted into the military. The photons travel in strict martial manner, and as a result they penetrate much more deeply, so that a laser can bore holes in just about anything, and a large enough laser can reach the moon without dispersing. This is the third reading, and as you have pointed out, by that time you're under a higher law.

Under civil law there are many misdemeanors that you can break easily with no consequences, like jaywalking or littering.

Under martial law there are less laws and you are not subject to civil laws, but the laws are much stricter, and you have less rights in a court-martial than you do in a civil court.

Under divine law, there are even less laws, and they abrogate the laws that are under them, but they are unforgiving, so that the Lord's mercy IS justice. The opposites reconcile; the three forces are seen (or de-braided), and one is no longer third force blind.

Thank you very much for your comment. I found it quite helpful.