For the same reason we have to give the quicksilver a seminal virtue, or to keep it simply, we have to take only the purer substance of quicksilver, because this one is likely to take the form of gold, of all its virtue, of all its Spirits, from which the form of gold takes its origin”.
To put it in poor word: we have to get a huge amount of Secret Fire”, in fact at page 53 we find the following words of Avicenna, or ibn Sina.
Page 53: “ Avicenna says that the Sulphur used by nature cannot be find but inside the two perfect metals and, in order to get it really perfect, we have to extract it either out of gold or silver, because these two metals are pure and the Art has no other mine. The Mercurius which they are formed is the root of the Dye and the beginning of the Stone; and is the nature of gold that a real artist must know”.
Page 54: “Al Jabair says that the natural Sulphur color is always yellow, because this is the real gold color . But when the Sulphur will disappear and the quicksilver becomes apparent , the color becomes white: thus the white color is the real philosophical color, or better, it is the Philosophical Sulphur color, because it is composed by a pure quicksilver whose last sign is the whiteness and the crystalline clarity”.
We always find in Stuart Chevalier this confusing tendence to explain Alchemy through a supposed theory of the natural formation of metals. But what is here worth to be remembered is that Mercurius is white and Sulphur is a Mercurius coagulated. Which can scarcely be explained by her archaic theory of formation.
“ One has to pay attention that when gold makes Mercurius blossoming, this sign announces the gold is up working to the generation of its root, which is already open in the time and which will grow like a plant.
In this period the closed gold has been already putrefied and the germ developed. it pushes up flowers to give fruits once ripe. In this sense Sulphur and Mercurius are really philosophical;
Is this step the first dissolution of gold, or its further incrudation (8)?
Page 55: “ When this young plant is beginning to appear, one must take care and not let it die. So one has to make the Mercurius fixing with Sulphur to keep alive each other; since if the Mercurius is let precipitate, it will not fix anymore and will die. This is the reason why one has never to forget to make this matter to ferment with another gold fixed. This is what is commonly known as the allegory of the old man trying to rejuvenate; That’s to say that the corporal gold has to divided, cooked till perfection, and when its divided his limbs get reunified and solidify, then the old man will be rejuvenated according to his wishes and, whilehis guardian will be sleeping by means of a perfect cooking, his limbs will get dissolved in vapor.
This philosophical allegory points at the perfect cooking of the gold, which has to be penetrated till its roots, till its Mercurius which, alone, is able to receive the virtues of Spirits.
Page 56: “Soon after having extracted this Mercurius, it must be set aside and fixed, since if it is cooked too long it tends to fly away and if it is also taken before its perfect cooking, it turns useless. The excess and the defect are both to avoid. If any essential point during the preparation of Mercurius Philosohorum gets failed, a golden tincture will never be produced.
There are rules to be observed which we cannot abstain from: when a thing is cooked, if is not immediately removed from fire it burns and wholly dies; on the other hand if it is removed before being enough cooked, one cannot do anything.
So for all these reasons we are compelled to keep an eye to see when the sign of perfect Mercurius will appear. This sign being no other thing than the mercurial whiteness to announce that all is arrived to the supreme degree of purity by means of cooking. This is what the philosophers call the first part of the Magisterium and what composes the real Tincture.
Hali says that when the Stone appears it is like a plant”.
Page 57: “ To make a real tincture we must have a quick substance, a Mercurius prepared in its essence and matter, according to the natural rules, in the same way if it would be made by nature in the deep of the earth. Soon after Mercurius has been formed and well purified, it promptly takes the form of gold.
Thus we have to get hold of a quick Mercurius to pour a gold tincture into. One can take ( Stuart Chevalier uses the verb “ prendre” indeed) this Mercurius inside the gold, inside the quicksilver, or inside whatever else, where this quick matter actually is, and which has to be pure, subtle, bright as it was when nature gave it the form of gold.
Page 58: The whole secret of our art consists in making the thing as it was before; but in order to achieve that we must be careful not to perform contrary transmutations, that’s to say we have to make a simple separation of the terrestrial substance elements: we are not claiming to say that the matter should be deprived of all its elements, but that it must be separated in a subtle way”.
Read that as a “salts volatilization” with a final fixation of the product.