This wordpress blog is about the alchemy of Steven School in words and pictures concerning the magnum opus or the great work of the sun and moon in the mineral kingdom of hermetic alchemy. For updates on Steven School Alchemy subscribe to the Steven School Alchemy YouTube Channel.
How long does the black stage of Alchemy last? The black stage of Alchemy or nigredo was also called a work of Saturn in which matter putrefies into a black earth which was called the philosopher’s lead. Writings of the alchemist Hollandus indicate the black stage of Alchemy should last not more that 32 months. This time frame provides a clue regarding the secret work of alchemists because in alchemy I have seen many things turn black during different experiments, each with its own corresponding time frame.
Years ago while doing extensive internet research regarding alchemy and the philosopher’s stone I came across a tidbit that one of the old alchemists (I forgot which one) had made his philosopher’s stone in a previous century from iron pyrite.
The following is alchemy of Steven School. Do not try this at home. Not for consumption. This blog post does not constitute advice of any type nor is it intended for any specific person. No warranty is expressed or implied as to the accuracy or completeness of any information presented here.
Article written by Steven School.
I had already been contemplating this mineral iron pyrite as perhaps the philosopher’s stone of alchemy and I feel there are many supporting factors which made this a good candidate to fill the question what is the philosopher’s stone made from? Since then I have performed numerous alchemy experiments on iron pyrite in attempt to recreate the philosopher’s stone of alchemy. I found many things in the pyrite. One of my experiments went as follows, I ground iron pyrite in a mortar and pestle before placing it in a large glass pickle jar. I added mostly white vinegar from Wal Mart and a little hydrogen peroxide. I loosely covered the top with saran wrap to keep the dust out but if pressure arose it could find vent before breaking the glass. The vinegar became yellow like golden water. I poured this off into a large vision ware bowl to evaporate outdoors on an electric hot plate set on low. I repeated the extractions on the iron pyrite and kept adding it to the evaporation pot. When the matter became like a green gum I thought this is the green lion from alchemy. I carefully finished drying it in warm sunlight to avoid burning the green stuff. I scraped the dry acetate? Into a borosilicate retort and distilled it on low heat. It turned black which is supposed to be a good sign in alchemy. It’s supposed to be the first color change seen in the creation of the philosopher’s stone during the great work of the Magnum opus. A clear liquid came over the helm which I placed in a borosilicate round flask. I added a small gold nugget which I had pounded flat and thin with a hammer before washing it. I stoppled the flask close with a ground glass stopper and placed it in a sand bath gradually increasing the heat. The stopper popped out a few times from the mounting pressure but I put it back in. I had to get the heat hot which seemed to help. The secret metallic water of Alchemy seemed to be dissolving the gold. A red glass like stone formed in my flask which is on the cover of my book alchemy survival guide by Steven School.
1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
2 And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.
Alchemy of Steven School. Do not try this at home. Not for consumption. This video does not constitute advice of any type nor is it intended for any specific person. No warranty is expressed or implied as to the accuracy or completeness of any information presented here. Alchemical substances may be toxic. The black stage of alchemy was called nigredo or blackness in which matter begins to putrefy or decompose after augmentation / multiplication. This was also called fermentation. The internal fire is activated stimulating the decomposition and the elements are reduced into a black earth. From the alchemical manuscripts of Pontanus / Artephius, “The whole work is done by the action of the secret fire alone”. In alchemy Saturn is the planet that rules nigredo. This stage of the alchemy great work was called the reign of Saturn. From the alchemical manuscript of Sir George Ripley called The Twelve Gates. “Augmentation of the elixir indeed”, also “For with mercury you may multiply infinitely” Credit, George Ripley 12 gates of alchemy. Saturn represents the philosopher’s lead. The writings of the ancient sages indicated the black stage of alchemy came after conjunction which was also called augmentation of the philosopher’s stone or multiplication of the philosopher’s stone in alchemy. Alchemists suggested little milk and meat at first and that the black stage would last forty 40 days and forty 40 nights which would supposedly complete one turn of the alchemical wheel, but two more multiplication were needed according to alchemical legends. Supposedly a larger composition could be done without needing additional multiplication however it was supposed to take longer than the traditional 40 days and nights. The reign of Saturn or the black stage in the great work of the alchemy magnum opus was believed to appear after conjunction but before a peacock’s tail, a white stage, a purple very glorious to behold, and a final fixed red indicating one multiplication of the philosopher’s stone was complete. Some alchemical manuscripts indicated the peacock’s tail of alchemy came before the phase of whiteness while others suggested it came after. Different alchemists suggested different quantities of philosopher’s stone ingredients in the alchemy recipes on how to make the philosopher’s stone. See the alchemical writings of Nicholas Flamel for instance and compare them to The New Chemical Light attributed to Michael Sendivogius or even In Pursuit of Gold by Lapidus. They all seem to call for different amounts of the secret ingredients for the philosopher’s stone or their philosopher’s stone recipes. My understanding of alchemy from researching the writings of the ancient sages on how to make the philosopher’s stone of alchemy indicates that once the ingredients form the composition in the alchemist egg for augmentation or multiplication of the philosopher’s stone, the glass should not be opened at all until the colors of the great work have finished and the final fixed red is observed. Alchemy of Steven School.
So, how long does the black stage of alchemy last?
How long does the black stage of alchemy last? Excerpt from A Work of Saturn Johann Isaac Hollandus
From Of natural & supernatural things. London, 1670. you may finish a work of Saturn in 30 or 32 weeks at the most.