Jacob Boehme: From ‘De Signatura Rerum’ – Now wilt thou be a Magus ?
‘De Signatura Rerum’ frontispiece,
for the 1730 third German edition,
also called the second Gichtel edition
🌿Today’s sharing from the Blue House of Via-HYGEIA is an key extract from Jacob Boehme’s ‘De Signatura Rerum’, John Sparow’s first English edition, London, 1651, Printed by John Macock for Gyles Calvert, translated by John Elliston. Chapter 7, p. 52 to 58. Transcribed from our library’s original🌿 Jacob Boehme’s point is a stumbling stone within the magical and theurgical communities. Many problems take their source in a lack of proper educational foundations, of ethics… and of true humility. ‘He must increase, but I must decrease‘ says John 3:30-35 -KJV. Knowledge without the heart leads to an untamed and chaotic ego. Here a quote from Eugène Dupré lays down the problem in its sharpness: ‘…We don’t start with Wisdom-and those who believed, supporting themselves with the discarded fragments of tradition published in books, they possessed it-were mistaken. They only gained knowledge, scholarship, and if an occasion, an influence does not push them towards the current of Love-current enabling them to be able to follow and acquire a normal initiation-they remain occultists. ‘ (‘Under the Sign of the Infinite’). The whole mystery of the gift of God lies here🌿
‘34. Now we will come unto the process of Christ, and go with him out of eternity into Time , and out of Time into Eternity, and bring again the Wonders of Time into Eternity, and openly set forth the pearl, for Honor unto Christ, and scorn unto the Devil ; he that sleeps is blind, but he that wakes, sees what the pleasant spring in May brings.
35. Christ said : “Seek, and you shall find ; knock, and it shall be opened unto you”. Ye know that Christ signifies in a parable concerning the wounded Samaritan, how he fell among murderers, which beat him and wounded him, and pulled of hid clothing, and went away, and left him lie half dead, until the Samaritan came and took pity on him, dressed him, and poured oil into his wound, and brought him into the Inn. This is a manifest and lively representation of the corruption of Man in Paradise, and also of the Corruption of the Earth in the Curse of God, when Paradise departed from it.
36. Now wilt thou be a Magus ? Then thou must become the Samaritan, else thou can not heal the wounded and decayed ; for the body, which thou must heal, is half dead, and solely wounded, also its tight garment is torn oft, so that is very hard for thee to know the man whom thou wilt heal, except thou hast the eye and will of the Samaritan, and seeks nothing else thereby but to restore the loss of the wounded.
37. Now consider! The Eternal Word manifested itself in Adam with divine living essentiality, with the heavenly Mercury, but when the soul fire in Adam, by the infection of the Devil, poisoned the will spirit in Adam, and introduced it through the property of the serpent into earthly deadly lust, then the Heavenly Mercury of the Heavenly Essence withdrew, that is, the soul-will departed from it with its Desire, and introduced his Hunger into the earthly mortal Essence, viz. into the property of the cold Mercury, which had made Stones and Earth ; Adam’s spirit would prove this Mercury, and have the knowledge in evil and good, and so this Mercury of the four elements forth withdrew him into its poison, and effectually wrought in him, and robbed him of the divine property, stung, and wounded him with Heat and Cold, and made him half dead, and stripped him of his angelical raiment, viz. the garment in the pure Element, where the Heavenly Source penetrates the four elements, and tinctured them in Adam’s body ; then he needed no other garment, for Heat and Cold were as it were swallowed up in him ; as the Day holds the Night swallowed up in its self, and yet the Night dwells in the Day, but it is not manifest; thus it went with Man when the property and source of the Night seized on him, then it dominated in him; and thus it went also with the Earth when God cursed it.
38. Now wilt thou be a Magus ? then thou must understand how to change the Night again into the Day ; for the source of the Night, viz. of the Darkness, is the Anguish-source of Death ; and the source of the Day, viz. of the Light, is the Life, and Lustre in the Life ; now Christ hath again enkindled this Shine in the Humanity, and quickened man again in Himself. Now if thou wilt tincture, then thou must change that which is shut up, and closed in the Death of the Night again into the Day, for the Day is the Tincture, and yet the Day and Night lie in each other as one Essence.
39. Now says Reason, what shall I first do to bring it to pass ? Look upon the process, how God began with the Humanity, when He would Tincture the same.
40. Christ came into this world in the shut-up humane form, and brought into the enclosed fortress of Death the Tincture of Life, viz. the Deity, He came into the World as a pilgrim in our poor form, He became ours, that he might Tincture us in Himself; but what did he ? Did he live in Joy ? Did he behave and carry himself as a lord? No ; He entered into Death and dyed, and put away the Night-Source in him through us : But how did he do it ? He assumed the Essence of our soul and body unto the divine Essence, and quickened our Essence with the divine, that our Essence entered again with its Will and Desire into the divine Essence, and then the Heavenly Fiat was moved again in the Humanity; for the Humanity inclined it self again into the Liberty, viz. into the free Lubet of the Deity.
41. This being done, the man Christ was tempted forty days, so long as the first Adam was alone in Paradise, and was tempted; then the outward earthly food was taken from him, and the Humanity must eat with its desire of God’s Essence; there was represented unto him all whatsoever the first Adam had Amused himself in, and where into he Imagined, and wherein he was captivated, as in the Death of the Night. This the Devil, being a Prince of this world, now represented it unto Adam through the Serpent, whereon Adam and his wife did amuse themselves, and entered there into with the Imagination.
42. Now behold ! What did Christ do when he was to undergo the Combat of this Trial, when the humane Essence was to enter again with its Desire into the Deity, and eat of God’s bread, that is, of the divine Essentiality? He went to Jordan, and was baptized of John; Wherewith? With the waters in Jordan, and with the water in the word of Life, viz. with Divine Essence, which must Tincture our mortal Essence in the outward Humanity of Christ, whence the divine Hunger arose in the Humane Essence, that he desired to eat of God’s Bread, therefore the Spirit of God took him and carried him into the Wilderness, and there the Father’s Property in the Wrath opposed him through the Prince in the Wrath, and there God’s bread, and also the bread of God’s Anger according to their Death Desire, was tendered unto him ; now it was tried, whether the Soul, which was generated and created out of the Father’s Property, would after this Tincturation of Baptism enter again into Love-desire, viz. into the nothing out of all Source.
43.What is hereby intimated unto the Magus ? A Mystery is hinted unto him ; if he will do wonders with Christ, and Tincture the Corrupt Body to the New Birth, he must first be baptized, and then he getts a Hunger after God’s Bread, and this Hunger hath in it the Verbum Fiat, viz. the Archeus (work master or father) to the new generation, that is, the Mercury : but I do not speak here of a Priest’s baptism ; the Artist must it Magically ; God and Man must first come together here thou baptizes, as it came to pass in Christ ; the Deity first entered into the Humanity, but the Humanity could not presently comprehend it, until it was quickened through Baptism, and the Hunger, viz, the dead Mercury in the humane Essence, was again stirred up in the Heavenly part.
44. And here began again the Human eating, viz. the Mercury received again Divine Property and Will ; and then the inward Mercury ( understand Man’s Property ) did eat in the Taste of the Divine Word of God’s Essence : And the four Elemental Properties did eat of the Nights Property, so long, till the Human Mercury sublimed its Life, and changed the four Elements into One : And the Life Tinctured Death, which was done on the Cross ; then the four Elements departed from him : that is, He dyed unto Time, viz. to the Night, that is, to the four Elements, and arose in the pure Element, and lived to Eternity.
45. The Magus must keep and observe this process also with his Alchemy. Dost thou ask how? I will not put it into thy mouth by reason of the wicked, who is not worthy of it: Observe only the Baptism, that thou baptizes the dead Mercury, which lies in the Heavenly Essentiality, enclosed and shut up in Impotency with its own Baptism, [ and mark ] of what Essence he is in a thing : but thou must have his divine Water, and also the earthly ; for the earthly Mercury cannot else receive the Divine [Being] except the Divine Mercury receives of its Power, where-upon it stirs and hungers : even then the Heavenly [ Mercury] seeks, but finds not Divine Essence about it for its food ; there-upon it brings its Will through the Desire of Death into itself, viz. into the Verbum Fiat, which hath made and produced it, and sets its Hunger upon the Same ; where-upon the Divine Essence inclines it self unto it, and will become Joyfulness in him ; even then arises the beginning of the new body out of the Divine Essentiality , which the Desire nourishes and brings up; and when the new Life is born, viz. the Day ; then the four Elements dye : and then the new Body is shut up in the dark Death, and on the third day is rises again from Death ; for the night is swallowed in the Grave, and the Morning rises.
46. If thou didn’t understand this, then had thou not the Pearl ; but my Intent and purpose is otherwise; I will show thee Christ along with it, and also this Pearl ; therefore none shall find it but he that loves Christ.
47.Thou says, tell me the Baptism ? and I have already told thee. Every Hunger is a desire after its Property ; now if thou gives again the Property of Death unto the Hunger of Death, then Death increases , but if thou gives him Heavenly Property, then Death receives not, for Hell is against Heaven ; therefore thou must give Death and the Anger of God to Death, and in this Anger give him Heavenly Essence, viz. the Baptism, and so the Baptism will swallow the Death into itself, even then the Anger dyes in the Death through the Baptism, but not presently ; thou must first keep the process of Christ, and suffer the Baptized to Preach, that is, to appear in this divine Form and Color, exceedingly persecute and plague him, and give him no rest ; for so the right Mercury becomes working and active ; and then thou must cast the old and new Man into God’s great Anger, and slay the old Man, ventilate him, and hang him naked on the Cross, and again take him thence, and lay him into the Putrefication, viz. into the Grave.
48. And then Christ will arise from Death, and appear, but only his own know him ; He walks about in Heavenly Form, and sometimes in his own [ form which he had here ] until the Feast of Pentecost, for now here is tried in him the highest Perfection, whether he will persist in the Angels form, and eat only of the Divine Essence ; and then cometh the Holy Ghost, and proceeds with his Power out of the whole Corpus, viz. out of the Body and Soul, Which then Tinctures the dead and broken Being ; as may be seen in the day of Pentecost, where Saint Peter tinctured three thousand Souls at once with his Heavenly Mercury, and delivered them out of Death.
49. Dear Seeker, herein lies the Pearl, had thou the Universal, then ye could also Tincture as Saint Peter did, but your covetous Death doth withhold you and shut you up ; for ye seek only Covetousness and Temporal Honor in the pleasure of the flesh, to generate your selves in the Night Property ; therefore the Pearl doth hide it self from you ; yet the day shall again appear, when the wrathful Anger of God is fulfilled, satisfied and appeased in the Blood of the Saints, and turned unto a Love-life, and the time is neat.’