The soul has a man's form and has been hidden in a Secret Place since the creation of the world, and there has not yet been a man with a soul in him. Even the Holy Fathers and Jacob, our Father that was greater than all of them, and all the great ones and holy ones, had no souls. For there is in every man and inner lack; and he does not feel his lack, and on account of this we wear ourselves out trying to reach the degree of Whole Man, for only the Whole Man will be fit for a soul to be in him.Now, according to the Hermetic teachings of the old European tradition, as promulgated by the Rosicrucian Order of Alpha et Omega and its mouthpiece David Griffin, the true nature and processing of Hermetic Alchemy is according to the following:
- The true Prima Materia or First Matter is the physical body and any other interpretation of the actual Opus Magnum other than as the transmutation of the matter of the physical body into Solar energy (Spirit) is mistaken. This transmutation of the physical body into pure Solar energy and the cultivation of the energetic body is accompanied by a radical transformation of consciousness. Thus, the transmutation of Lead into Gold in reality has nothing to do with “manufacturing” gold, but rather is an allegory for the aforementioned transmutation. This is also referred to as the cultivation of Soul, with the ultimate goal of giving birth to a “body of light” or “solar body”.
- But man has not mere the physical body and the Solar body to consider but also several bodies or layers of being in between. The densest body closest to the physical is the “lunar body” and this one is actually the first to be made and prepared in the Great Work. But there also exists an intermediary body between the lunar and the solar, called the “mercurial body”.
- As an Adept learns to project his or her consciousness into that solar body, he or she becomes more and more conscious of his or her immortal nature, even while still alive. At the conclusion of the Great Work, at the moment of death, the Adept separates his or her consciousness from their physical body and projects it into their ”solar body”, thus achieving liberation from further incarnation and becoming consciously immortal.
- Thus, not everyone has a Soul! – At least not according to Hermetic Science! The secret, initiatic tradition within Hermeticism defines Soul in a very specific way. Our Soul is the sum total of our energetic bodies, grown from the soil of the matter of our physical bodies. This First Matter, or Prima Materia, is then transmuted into ever-purer forms of solar energy using the secret processing of Hermetic Inner Alchemy. Hermetic Magic can also effect this transmutation – albeit much more slowly. Since most people never know their energetic bodies, they remain without a Soul – or only with the Prima Materia with which to grow a Soul. Thus everyone has the potential to cultivate a Soul, but most people never bother. Thus they remain only with the seed of a potential Soul. There are however definite signs of Soul growth and energetic evolution. Actually, there are very clear signposts already beginning with the transmutation of lead into silver and the development and projection of the lunar (astral) body during the opening phase of the Opus Magnum.
- Moreover, the true nature of Hermetic Inner Alchemical processing has to do with the “cooking” of the physical matter of the body, the Prima Materia, using the subtle fires of the body itself – including love and sexuality. In this way, the highest practices of Hermetic Alchemy also involve a uniquely Western form of sacred sexuality. As these techniques can be extremely dangerous for those whose energetic bodies have not been sufficiently and properly prepared in advance of their practice, they have remained the most hidden part of the Western Esoteric tradition, reserved only for initiates for millennia and still remain so until today.
- Moreover, the true nature of the preparation, rectification and multiplication of the Philosopher’s Stone, as is described in the Book of Causes in the commentaries on the Emerald Tablet of Hermes, has to do with using the Stone to charge one’s subtle bodies with the forces of the Elements (in the case of rectification) and of the stars (Zodiac) in the case of multiplication. Moreover, this is accomplished in Hermetic Inner Alchemy by performing certain alchemical operations according to certain quite specific astrological cycles. Very little may be revealed to non-initiates about the true preparation of the Philosopher’s Stone, or regarding its rectification and multiplication.
- This “Opus Magnum” or Great Work of completing human evolution into pure Solar energy is the true object and goal of all Hermetic spiritual practice. This may be completed in a single incarnation only using the secret processing of Hermetic Inner Alchemy, to which allegorical reference is made in the long descriptions of laboratory processes of certain classical alchemical texts.
- The Qabalistic Nefesh (or animal soul) corresponds to the astral body of the eastern tradition or Lunar body of the Hermetic Alchemists.
- The Qabalistic Ruah (or rational soul) corresponds to the mental body of the eastern tradition or Mercurial body of the Hermetic Alchemists.
- The Qabalistic Neshamah (or divine soul) corresponds to the casual body of the eastern tradition or Solar body of the Hermetic Alchemists
Thus when hermeticists are referring to the notion that man lacks a Soul I believe that they actually mean we still haven’t developed our Solar body in a sufficient manner, and thus lack true immortality. We all have the potential to develop a Solar body, but in most of us it is still hidden in a “secret place”, i.e. beyond the reach of our conscious mind or manifest life – the World of Action.
In this I see that (Frankist) Qabalah and the Hermetic school confirms each other that in most men we have only the seed or potential of a soul, or the “foetus” of the Body of Light. In some of us we may find a more or less developed astral or Lunar body. But how many of us have a developed the Solar body? According to Frank none. Alchemy however teaches us that we actually may develop it, cultivate it through transmutation using the Stone of the Wise or Philosopher’s Stone. Only through energetic cultivation of our energetic bodies and the transmutation from Lead (corporeal body) into Gold (Solar body), using this Stone, we may reach that final goal of immortality and illumination.
Thus Jacob Frank ends his speech saying, “for only the Whole Man will be fit for a soul to be in him”. The “Whole Man” is the master or mistress who has transmuted him or herself into the body of Light and thus become Whole or Holy – a fountain of True Wisdom and Perfect Happiness, one who has found the Summum Bonum!