OUR DAILY BREAD – a blog for esoteric living

For those who see life as a Mystical Adventure

Archive for Alchemical

Book Review – The Meaning of Masonry

The Meaning of Masonry – W.L. Wilmshurst momwilmhurst

My father gave me this book as a gift right before I got my First Degree in the Blue Lodge. The author does a very good job of covering some of the deeper aspects of the Craft within Freemasonry as well as very good commentary on some of the historical background of the degrees and Rites.

The real value in this piece, is the abstraction of the Degree initiations and their respective symbolism and philosophy. While there are many, many books on masonic symbolism (see series on Symbol), this book does a very good job of tying the core Blue Lodge journey together with the articles and symbols (example: a very good section on the Apron) associated with each degree through the Royal Arch. The author’s writing style is very natural and flowing and a sense of quiet reverence and respect is felt when reading it. There is mention and commentary on the further degrees and Rites as well as a refreshing dive into the mystical heritage (Mystery Schools) and alchemical tenets of the Order.

While the original publishing is relatively dated ( 1927; my copy is a 1980 revised edition), the content is no less applicable today as it was then. In many cases, the tempo and subject matter are better suited than most of the more recent published works, for the newest generation of Brethren joining for esoteric reasons, rather than purely fraternal or political ones. As I mentioned earlier, this book does have sentimental value to me ( my father and many family members are active in Freemasonry, Eastern Star etc ), but I genuinely see this work as a solid addition to any personal Masonic library… Knife and Fork Masons included 😉

51wvBqldjgL._SL160_
Amazon

Advertisements

Book Review – In Pursuit of Gold~Alchemy Today in Theory and Practice

In Pursuit of Gold~Alchemy Today in Theory and Practice – Lapidus  IPG

I purchased this book several years ago during a period of exhaustive research and obsession with alchemy. This book was a limited printing and has become increasingly rare and is relatively costly to acquire. It contains a great deal of information and includes the classical wisdom from the core contributors, back to Artephius.

The text includes at least 4 complete instruction sets on how to make the stone and does reference the white powder. There is a fine assortment of classic alchemical plates in the center binding as well as modern sequences for completing the work and a useful Q&A section in Appendix I.

I must stress that this book is only useful to those with full grasp of symbolic teachings and esoteric interpretation (see series on Symbol). Those attempting to access this book using traditional western thought or a midrash-esque view of alchemical texts will find this work frustrating.

Chapters 3 (The Secret Book) and 12 (Vade Mecum) may be especially useful to those ensconced in alchemical pursuits. A fine collectors piece.

In Pursuit of Gold~Alchemy in Theory and Practice on Amazon