- 9. Light is cold flame, and flame is fire, and the fire produces heat, which yields water, the water of life in the great mother (Chaos) (a).
(a) It must be remembered that the words “ Light,” “ Fire,” and “ Flame ” used in the Stanzas have been adopted by the translators thereof from the vocabulary of the old “ Fire philosophers,” ‡ in order to render better the meaning of the archaic terms and symbols employed in the original. Otherwise they would have remained entirely unintelligible to a European reader. But to a student of the Occult the terms used will be sufficiently clear.
All these — “ Light,” “ Flame,” “ Hot,” “ Cold,” “ Fire,” “ Heat,” “ Water,” and the “ water of life ” are all, on our plane, the progeny ; or as a modern physicist would say, the correlations of electricity. Mighty word, and a still mightier symbol ! Sacred generator of a no less sacred progeny ; of fire — the creator, the preserver and the destroyer ; of light — the essence of our divine ancestors ; of flame — the Soul of things. Electricity, the one Life at the upper rung of Being, and Astral Fluid, the Athanor of the Alchemists, at its lowest ; god and devil, good and evil. . . .
‡ Not the Mediæval Alchemists, but the Magi and Fire-Worshippers, from whom the Rosicrucians or the Philosophers per ignem, the successors of the theurgists borrowed all their ideas concerning Fire, as a mystic and divine element.
Now, why is Light called in the Stanzas “ cold flame ” ? Because in the order of Cosmic evolution (as taught by the Occultist), the energy that actuates matter after its first formation into atoms is generated on our plane by Cosmic heat ; and because Kosmos, in the sense of dissociated matter, was not, before that period. The first primordial matter, eternal and coeval with Space, “ which has neither a beginning nor an end,” is “ neither hot nor cold, but is of its own special nature,” says the Commentary (Book II). Heat and cold are relative qualities and pertain to the realms of the manifested worlds, which all proceed from the manifested Hyle, which, in its absolutely latent aspect, is referred to as the “ cold Virgin,” and when awakened to life, as the “ Mother.” The ancient Western Cosmogonic myths state that at first there was but cold mist which was the Father, and the prolific slime (the Mother, Ilus or Hyle), from which crept forth the Mundane snakematter, (Isis, vol. i., p. 146). Primordial matter, then, before it emerges from the plane of the never-manifesting, and awakens to the thrill of action under the impulse of Fohat, is but “ a cool Radiance, colourless, formless, tasteless, and devoid of every quality and aspect.” Even such are her first-born, the “ four sons,” who “ are One, and become Seven,” — the entities, by whose qualifications and names the ancient Eastern Occultists called the four of the seven primal “ centres of Forces,” or atoms, that develop later into the great Cosmic “ Elements,” now divided into the seventy or so sub-elements, known to science. The four primal natures of the first Dhyan Chohans, are the so-called (for want of better terms) “ Akasic,” “ Ethereal,” “ Watery,” and “ Fiery,” answering, in the terminology of practical occultism, to scientific definitions of gases, which, to convey a clear idea to both Occultists and laymen, must be defined as Parahydrogenic, * Paraoxygenic, Oxy-hydrogenic, and Ozonic, or perhaps Nitr-ozonic ; the latter forces or gases (in Occultism, supersensuous, yet atomic substances) being the most effective and active when energising on the plane of more grossly differentiated matter. † These are both electro-positive and electro-negative.
* παρὰ, “ beyond,” outside.
† Each of these and many more are probably the missing links of chemistry. They are known by other names in Alchemy and to the Occultists who practise in phenomenal powers. It is by combining and recombining in a certain way (or dissociating) the “ Elements ” by means of astral fire that the greatest phenomena are produced.