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«***START OF THE PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK HIDDEN SYMBOLISM OF ALCHEMY AND THE OCCULT ARTS*** Hidden Symbolism of ALCHEMY and the OCCULT ARTS (Formerly ...»

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We ought not to explain the figures of the lion and the elders as “the father.” Such exalted figures are usually condensations or composite persons. The elders are not merely the father, but also [070] the old, or the older ones = parents in general, in so far as they are severe and unapproachable. Apparently the mother also will prove unapproachable if the adult son desires her as a wife. [The male child, on the other hand, frequently has erotic experiences with the mother. The parents connive at these, because they do not understand the significance even of their own caresses. They Section I. Psychoanalytic Interpretation Of The Parable. 57 generally do not know how to fix the limits between moderation and excess.] The wanderer has no luck with blandishments in the case of the lion. He begins indeed to fondle him (cf. Sec. 6), but the lion looks at him formidably with his bright, shining eyes. He is not obliging; the wanderer has to struggle with him. Offering violence to the mother often appears in myths. We shall have an example of this later. It is characteristic that the wanderer is amazed at his own audacity.

Dragon fighting, dismembering, incest, separation of parents, and still other motives have an intimate connection in mythology.

I refer to the comparison of motives collected by Stucken from an imposing array of material. [I quote an excerpt from it at the end of this volume, Note A.] The motive of dismemberment has great significance for the subsequent working out of my theme, so I must for that reason delay a little longer at this point.

The parts resulting from the dismemberment have a sexual or procreative value. That is evident from the analysis of the parable, even without the support of mythological parallels. [071] None the less let it be noticed that many cosmogonies assign the origin of the universe or at least the world or its life to the disintegrated parts of the body of a great animal or giant. In the younger Edda the dismemberment of the giant Ymir is recounted.

“From Ymir's flesh was the earth created, From his sweat the sea, From his skeleton the mountains, the trees from his hair, From his skull the heavens, From his eyebrows kindly Äses made Mitgard, the son of man.

But from his brain were created all the ill-tempered clouds.” The Iranian myth has an ancestor bull, Abudad. “From his left side goes Goschorum, his soul, and rises to the starry heavens;

from his right side came forth Kajomorts (Gâyômard), the first man. Of his seed the earth took a third, but the moon two thirds.

58 Hidden Symbolism of Alchemy and the Occult Arts From his horns grew the fruits, from his nose, leeks, from his blood, grapes, from his tail, five and twenty kinds of grain. From his purified seed two new bulls were formed, from which all animals are descended.” Just as in the Iranian myth the original being, Gâyômard, considered as human, and the ancestor bull belong together, so we find in the northern myth a cow Audhumla associated with Ymir. Ymir is to be regarded as androgynous (man and woman), the primitive cow as only a doubling of his being. The Iranian primitive bull ancestor also occurs as cow.

Compare white and red, male and female, in the body of the lion.

[072] In the Indian Asvamedha the parts of the sacrificed steed correspond to the elements of the visible creation. (Cf.

Brhadaranyaka—Upanisad I, i.) A primitive vedic cosmogony makes the world arise from the parts of the body of a giant.

(Rig-veda purusa-sukta.) Just as from the dead primordial being the sacrificed bull, Mithra, sprouts life and vegetation, so in the dream of Omicron, a tree grows out of the belly of the dead bear. In mythology many trees grow out of graves, that in some way reincarnate the creative or life principle of the dead. It is an interesting fact that the world, or especially an improved new edition of the world, comes from the body of a dying being. Some one kills this being and so causes an improved creation. (According to Stucken, incidentally, all myths are creation myths.) This improvement is now identical, psychologically, with the above mentioned superior knowledge of the son (expressed in general terms, the present new generation as opposed to the ancestors). The son does away with the father (the children overpower the ancestors), and creates, as it were out of the wreckage, an improved world.

So, beside the superior knowledge, a superior efficiency. The primordial beings are destroyed but not so the creative power (phallus, tree, the red and the white). It passes on to posterity (son) which uses it in turn.

Dismemberments in creation myths are not always multiple Section I. Psychoanalytic Interpretation Of The Parable. 59 but sometimes dichotomous. Thus in the Babylonian cosmogony Marduk splits the monster Tiamat into two pieces, which [073] henceforth become the upper and lower half of heaven. Winckler concludes that Tiamat is man-woman (primal pair). This brings us to the type of creation saga where the producer of the (improved) world separates the primal pair, his parents. The Chinese creation myth speaks of the archaic Chaos as an effervescing water, in which the two powers, Yang (heaven) and Yin (earth), the two primal ancestors, are mingled and united. Pwanku, an offshoot of these primal powers (son of the parents), separates them and thus they become manifest. In the Egyptian myth we read (in Maspero, Histoire des Peuples de l'Orient, Stucken, Astral Myth, p. 203): “The earth and the heaven were in the beginning a pair of lovers lost in the Now who held each other in close embrace, the god below the goddess. Now on the day of creation a new god [son type], Shou, came out of the eternal waters, glided between them and seizing Nouit [the goddess] with his hands, lifted her at arms' length above his head. While the starry bust of the goddess was lengthened out in space, the head to the west, the loins to the east, and became the sky, her feet and her hands [as the four pillars of heaven] fell here and there on our earth.” The young god or the son pushes his way between the parents, sunders their union, just as the dreamer Omicron would have liked to sunder the chain of the bear (the marriage bond of the parents). This case is quite as frequent a type in analytic psychology as in mythical cosmology. The child is actually an intruder, even if it does [074] indirectly draw the bonds of marriage tighter. Fundamentally regarded, the child appears as the rival of the father, who is no longer the only beloved one of his wife. He must share the love with the new comer, to whom an even greater tenderness is shown. Regarded from the standpoint of the growing son, the intrusion represents the Œdipus motive (with the incest wish).





The most outspoken and also a commonly occurring form of the mythological separation of the primal pair is the castration 60 Hidden Symbolism of Alchemy and the Occult Arts of the father by the son. The motive is, according to all accounts, psychologically quite as comprehensible as the frequently substituted castration of the son by the father. The latter is psychologically the necessary correlate of the first form.

The rivals, father and son, menace each other's sexual life. That the castration motive works out that way with father and son (sonin-law if the daughter takes the place of the mother) is expressed either in so many words in the myth or through corresponding displacement types.

A clear case is the emasculation of Uranus by his son Kronos, who thereby prevents the further cohabitation of the primal parents. [Archetype of the Titan motive in a narrow sense.] Important for us is the fact that castration in myths is represented sometimes as the tearing out of a limb or by complete dismemberment. (Stucken, Astral Myth, pp. 436, 443, 479, 638 ff.; Rank, Incest Motive, p. 311 ff.) [075] The Adam myth also contains the motive of the separated primal parents. In Genesis we do not, of course, see the myth in its pure form. It must first be rehabilitated. Stucken accomplishes this in regarding Adam and Eve (Hawwa) as the original worldparent pair, and Jahwe Elohim as the separating son god. By a comparison of Adam and Noah he incidentally arrives by analogical reasoning at an emasculation of Adam. In connection with the “motive of the sleeping primal father,” he observes later (Astral Myth, p. 224) that the emasculation (or the shameless deed, Ham with Noah) is executed while the primal father lies asleep. Thus, Kronos emasculates Uranus by night while he is sleeping with Gaia. Stucken now shows that the sleep motive is contained in the 2d chapter of Genesis. “And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept; and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof.” (II, 21.) According to Stucken the rib stands euphemistically for the organ of generation, which is cut off from Adam while he sleeps.

Rank works out another kind of rearrangement. He takes the Section I. Psychoanalytic Interpretation Of The Parable. 61 creation of Eve from Adam as an inversion. He refers to the ever recurring world-parent myths of savage peoples, in which the son begets upon the mother a new generation. He cites after Frobenius a story from Joruba, Africa, where the son and daughter of the world parents marry and have a son, who falls in love with his mother. As she refuses to yield to his passion he follows and overpowers her. She immediately jumps up [076] and runs away crying. The son follows her to soothe her, and when he catches her she falls sprawling on the earth, her body begins to swell, two streams of water spring from her breasts and her body falls in pieces. Fifteen gods spring from her disrupted body. [Motive of the mutilation of the maternal body. The dismembered lion also naturally contains this motive. From the mutilated body come male and female (red and white) children.] Rank supposes that the biblical account of the world parents serves as a mask for incest (and naturally at the same time the symbolic accomplishment of the incest). He continues, “It is needed only that the infantile birth theory [Birth from anus, navel, etc. The taking of the rib = birth process.] which ignores the sexual organs in woman and applies to both sexes, be raised in the child's thought to the next higher grade of knowledge, which ascribes to the woman alone the ability to bring children into the world by the opening of her body. In opposition to the biblical account we have the truly natural process, according to which Adam came out of the opened body of Eve. If by analogy with other traditions, we may take this as the original one, it is clear that Adam has sexual intercourse with his mother, and that the disguising of this shocking incest furnished the motive for the displacement of the saga and for the symbolic representation of its contents.” The birth from the side of the body, from the navel, from the anus, etc., are among children common theories [077] of birth. In myths analogous to the biblical apple episode the man almost always offers the apple to the woman. The biblical account is probably an inversion. The apple is an apple of 62 Hidden Symbolism of Alchemy and the Occult Arts love and an impregnation symbol. Impregnation by food is also an infantile procreation theory. For Rank, therefore, it is Adam who is guilty of separating the primal parents [Jahwe and Hawwa] and of incest with the mother. The contrast between the two preceding conceptions of the Adam myth should not be carried beyond limits. That they can stand side by side is the more conceivable because Genesis itself is welded together from heterogeneous parts and different elaborations of the primal pair motive. Displacements, inversions, and therefore apparent contradictions must naturally lie in such a material. Moreover, the interpretation depends not so much on the narrative of the discovered motives as on the motives themselves. [On the interpretation of the mythological motives cf. Lessmann, Aufg.

u. Ziele, p. 12.] Let us return now to the motive of dismemberment. One of the best known examples of dismemberment in mythology is that of Osiris. Osiris and Isis, the brother and sister, already violently in love with each other in their mother's womb, as the myth recounts, copulated with the result that Arueris was born of the unborn. So the two gods came into the world as already married brother and sister. Osiris traversed the earth, bestowing benefits on mankind. But he had a bad brother, full of jealousy and envy, Typhon (Set), who would gladly have taken advantage [078] of the absence of his brother to place himself on his throne. Isis, who ruled during the absence of Osiris, acted so vigorously and resolutely that all his evil designs were frustrated. Finally Osiris returned and Typhon, with a number of confederates (the number varies) and with the Ethiopian queen Aso, formed a conspiracy against the life of Osiris, and in feigned friendship arranged a banquet. He had, however, caused a splendid coffin to be made, and as they sat gayly at the feast, Typhon had it brought in, and offered to give it to the person whose body would fit it. He had secretly taken the measure of Osiris and had prepared the coffin accordingly. All tried it in turn. None fitted. Finally Section I. Psychoanalytic Interpretation Of The Parable. 63 Osiris lay in it. Then Typhon and his confederates rushed up, closed it and threw it into the river, which carried it to the sea.

(Creuzer, L., p. 259 ff.) For the killing of his brother Set, which happened according to the original version on account of desire for power, later tradition substitutes an unconscious incest which Osiris committed with his second sister, Nephthys, the wife of Set, a union from which sprang Anubis (the dog-headed god).



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