THE LIFE OF PHILIPPUS THEOPHRASTUS BOMBAST OF HOHENHEIM KNOWN BY THE NAME OF PARACELSUS AND THE SUBSTANCE OF HIS TEACHINGS
VI. MAGIC AND SORCERY
IN proportion as an art or science is lost or forgotten, the very name by which it was called becomes misunderstood, misapplied, and finally forgotten. In proportion as men become unspiritual and material, they will grow incapable of comprehending the power of spirit. There are many persons even to-day who deny the existence of spirit, or of anything that transcends the power of perception of their physical senses. One example of the degradation of terms is the meaning which is at present commonly attributed to the word magic. The true significance of that term is the application of spiritual knowledge, or Wisdom, in contradistinction to that science which sees only the material aspect of Nature. But the vulgar have come to believe "magic" to mean only sleight-of-hand performances, or perhaps conjuring or dealings with the devil, or with the spirits of the dead. True magic is the greatest of all natural sciences, because it includes a true knowledge of visible and invisible Nature. It is not only a science, but also an art, because it cannot be learned out of books, but must be acquired by practical experience. To acquire that spiritual experience is to become spiritual; it is to perceive and know the true nature of the visible and invisible elements that compose the Macrocosm and the Microcosm, and to possess the art to direct and employ the invisible powers of Nature.  Divine knowledge and divine powers do not belong to the personal self. Therefore he who desires to know and to use the powers of magic must rise above the delusion of self, and become impersonal in the spirit. He must learn to distinguish between that which is divine and eternal and that which is animal and selfish in him. But there is also another art, called "black magic" or sorcery, which consists, not in acting in and through the power of God, which commands the elemental forces of Nature, but by propitiating the evil elementals, and in asking favours of them, becoming their slave. Paracelsus says: --
"Magic and sorcery are two entirely different things, and there is as much difference between them as there is between light and darkness, and between white and black. Magic is the greatest wisdom and the knowledge of supernatural powers.  A knowledge of spiritual things cannot be obtained by merely reasoning logically from external appearances existing on the physical plane, but it will be acquired by obtaining more spirituality, and making one's self capable to feel and to see the things of the spirit. It would be well if our clergymen, who are called spiritual guides, would know more of spiritual things than what they have read in their books, and if they had some practical experience in divine wisdom, instead of merely repeating the opinions of the other people believed to have been divine."
"The wisdom which man ought to have does not come from the earth, nor from the astral spirit, but from the fifth essence -- the Spirit of Wisdom. Therefore man is superior to the stars and the constellation, provided he lives in the power of that superior wisdom. Such a person, being the master over heaven and earth, by means of his free will,  is called a Magus, and therefore Magic is not sorcery, but supreme wisdom" (De Peste).
"Christ and the prophets and the apostles had magical powers, acquired less by their learning than by their holiness. They were able to heal the sick by the laying on of their hands, and to perform many other wonderful but natural things. Our clergymen talk a great deal about such things; but where is the priest of to-day who can do like Him? It has been said by Christ that His true followers would do the same things and still greater ones; but it would be difficult to find at present one Christian minister who can do anything as Christ did. But if any one who is not a man-made minister comes and cures the sick by the power of Christ acting through him, they call him a sorcerer and a child of the devil, and are willing to burn him upon a stake."
The first requirement for the study of Magic is a thorough knowledge of Nature. But there is a false and a true natural science. A science may be perfectly logical in all its deductions, but nevertheless false, if its fundamental doctrines are based upon a misunderstanding of spiritual truths, which a cold, unspiritual intellect is unable to grasp.  The true science of Nature draws its logical conclusions from fundamental truths, which it knows to be true, because it perceives them by the power of the mind illuminated by wisdom. False science bases its conclusions in regard to spiritual things upon external appearances caused by the illusion of the senses; true science rests in the faculty of the higher regions of the human soul to grasp spiritual truths which are beyond the power of perception of the semi-animal intellect.
Magic is a power which teaches the true nature of the inner man, as well as the organisation of his outward body. The superficial reasoner can comprehend nothing but what he can perceive by his external senses; but the inner man has perceptive faculties transcending those of his body. The spirit of man is not bound to any locality; it is as free as the wind which blows over the sea. If spiritual consciousness has once been attained, spiritual perception follows. During sleep the spirit is capable to move more freely, and to visit distant places. "You should know that man has the capability (latent or active) to foresee future events, and to read the future from the books of the past and from those of the present Man also possesses a power by which he may see his friends and the circumstances by which they are surrounded, although such persons may be a thousand miles away from him at that time. This art is taught by Gabalis (the spiritual perception of man). It is a power which may become especially active in dreams, and that which is seen in such dreams is the reflection of the light of wisdom and prophecy in man. If a man in his waking state knows nothing of such things, the cause of his ignorance is, that he does not understand how to search in himself for the powers that are given to him by God, and by which he can arrive at all the Wisdom, Reason, and Knowledge concerning everything that exists, whether it be near him or far away."
He who seeks the truth for his own purposes, or to adorn and glorify himself with it, will never find it. We should not seek to possess the truth, but to let it become manifested in us.
"There are those who imagine that man obtains his knowledge from his own self and from the stars, so that if one is born under a favourable star he will know every thing. But if man is to inherit the kingdom of God, how, then, can he be a child of the constellation, which is doomed to perish? Where, then, shall we seek for true wisdom, except in that which is higher than all the stars, namely, God?"  (De Inventione Artium).
Ignorance is the cause of imperfection. "Men do not know themselves, and therefore they do not understand the things of their inner world. Each man has the essence of God, and all the wisdom and power of the world (germinally) in himself; he possesses one kind of knowledge as much as another, and he who does not find that which is in him cannot truly say that he does not possess it, but only that he was not capable of successfully seeking for it."
The exercise of inner sight requires tranquillity and peacefulness of the mind. "Sleeping is waking in regard to such arts, because it is the inner light of Nature that acts during sleep on the invisible man, who, notwithstanding his invisibility, is existing as truly as the visible one. The inner man is the natural man, and knows more than the one formed of flesh." 
"How can any one instruct others in regard to the works of God if he does not keep His laws? How can any one teach Christ if he does not know Him? How can that which is not eternal know the eternal? How can a fool teach divine wisdom? Verily, the nearer we approach the judgment-day the more will there be wiseacres and pretended instructors; but on that day those who were the first will be the last, and the last ones the first. Our sciences are worthless if they do not spring from the foundation of the true faith" (Lib. Philos.).
"Nature is the universal teacher. Whatever we cannot learn from the external appearance of Nature we can learn from her spirit. Both are one. Everything is taught by Nature to her disciple, if he asks for information in an appropriate manner. Nature is a light, and by looking at Nature in her own light we will understand her. Visible Nature can be seen in her visible light; invisible Nature will become visible if we acquire the power to perceive her inner light"  "The hidden things are there like a pillar of rock before a blind person. He can see it if he is able to open his eyes. The moon shines, but does not show things in their true colours; but if the sun arises, then will the true colours be seen. Thus the external light in Nature is like the moon, beyond which shines the internal light, and in this light that which has been invisible will appear visibly and comprehensibly" (Morb. Invis.). "There is a light in the spirit of man illuminating everything, and by which he may even perceive supernatural things. Those who seek in the light of external Nature know the things of Nature; those who seek knowledge in the light of man know the things above Nature, which belong to the kingdom of God. Man is an animal, a spirit, and an angel, for he has all three qualities. As long as he remains in Nature he serves Nature; if he moves in the spirit, he serves the spirit (in him); if he lives in the angel, he serves as an angel. The first quality belongs to the body, the two others to the soul, and they are its jewels. The body of man remains on the earth, but man, having a soul and the two additional qualities, is enabled to rise above Nature, and to know that which does not belong to Nature. He has the power to learn all that belongs to heaven and hell, to know God and His kingdom, the angels and spirits, and the origin of evil. If a man is to go to a certain place, it will be useful to him to know all about that place before he goes there; he will then after his arrival be enabled to move about freely, and to go wherever he pleases. The quality of each thing created by God, whether it be visible or invisible to the senses, may be perceived and known. If man knows the essence of things, their attributes, their attractions, and the elements of which they consist, he will be a master of Nature, of the elements, and of the spirits"  (Philosophia Sagax).
"The truth does not grow from your speculation and phantastry; but he who understands his own nature in the light of Nature possesses true knowledge. It is not sufficient that we should have a theory of the truth, but we should know the truth in ourselves "(De Peste.).
"There are two kinds of intelligence, that of the carnal man and that of the spirit; the former argues, the latter knows. Animals also have reasoning qualities; but their understanding is not from the (direct) light of the spirit "(De Generat. Homin.).
"The light of Nature teaches us that each form, reasonable and unreasonable, conscious ones and such as are without consciousness, has its natural spirit. The Nectromanticus (seer) must know these spirits, for without that knowledge he will not find their true character. By his art he can sense them, and having perceived them with his inner sense he will find their forms. Such spirits may be perceived in crystals; they guide the divining-rod and attract it as a magnet attracts iron; they turn the sieve and the key,  and draw the flame of a light away from the wick. By the art of Nectromancy we may look into the interior of rocks, closed letters may be read without being opened,  hidden things be found, and all the secrets of men be brought to light. Some people believe that such arts can best be practised by virgins and innocent children, because their minds are not clouded by false opinions nor darkened by memories of evil deeds; but any one can practise this art if he has the necessary qualifications" (Philosophia, Sagax).
He who understands letters can read words, and he who knows words can read books. If we know that a certain cause may produce a certain effect, and if such an effect takes place, we will easily recognise the cause that produced it. "If the crowing of cocks announces a change of weather, and if we hear the cocks crow in an unusual manner, we may predict that the weather will change. Certain animals have inherited instincts that cause them to act in a certain manner, which will indicate other future events than a change in the weather. The peculiar cry of a peacock or the unusual howling of a dog indicates the approach of a death in the house to which they are attached; for every being is a product of the universal principle of life, and each contains the light of Nature. Animals possess that light, and men bring it with them into the world." 
The power of clairvoyance and prevision is especially active in dreams, when the activity of the physical body is subdued, and the disturbing influences coming through the avenues of the physical senses are excluded. "Artists and students have often received instructions in their dreams in regard to things which they desired to know. Their imagination was then free, and began to work its wonders. It attracted to it the Evestra of some philosophers, and they communicated to them their knowledge. Such things happen frequently, but it very often occurs that on awakening to consciousness in the outer world all or a part of what has been learned during the dream is forgotten. If this happens and we wish to remember such dreams, we should not leave the room after rising, and speak to nobody, but remain alone and undisturbed, and eat nothing until after a while we remember that dream." 
"It is often the case that dreams have an important meaning, but many dreams that are pleasant may signify sorrow, and disagreeable dreams often signify joy; and we should, therefore, not put too much confidence in dreams." 
Men's astral bodies may more easily be influenced during sleep than during the waking state. The power to influence persons during their sleep is sometimes used for evil purposes: "Some persons, being in love with others, and finding their love unrequited, have sometimes used this circumstance to influence those whose love they desired by appearing to them in their dreams. They wrote with their own blood their names upon pieces of new paper, and put the slips under their pillows or beds, so that these persons should see the intended lovers in their dreams and fall in love with them. Girls used to put their belts, ribbons, locks of hair, &c., under the pillows of young men for whose love they craved; but very seldom they found the desired result in this manner, because they forgot that faith is necessary to obtain success." 
A strong faith and a powerful imagination are the two pillars supporting the door to the temple of magic, and without which nothing can be accomplished. Imagination is the formative power of man; it often acts instinctively and without any conscious effort of the will. "Man has a visible and an invisible workshop. The visible one is his body, the invisible one his imagination (mind). The sun gives light, and this light is not tangible, but its heat may be felt, and if the rays are concentrated it may set a house on fire. The imagination is a sun in the soul of man, acting in its own sphere as the sun of the earth acts in that of the earth. Wherever the sun shines, germs planted in the soil grow and vegetation springs up, and the sun of the soul acts in a similar manner, and calls the forms of the soul into existence. Visible and tangible forms grow into existence from invisible elements by the power of the sunshine. Invisible vapours are attracted and collected together into visible mists by the power of the sun of the outer world, and the inner sun of man performs similar wonders. The great world is only a product of the imagination of the universal mind, and man is a little world of its own that imagines and creates by the power of imagination. If man's imagination is strong enough to penetrate into every corner of his interior world, it will be able to create things in those corners, and whatever man thinks will take form in his soul. But the imagination of Nature is like a monkey aping the actions of man. That which man does is imitated by the monkey, and the pictures formed in the imagination of man create corresponding images in the mirror of Nature."
"Imagination is like the sun. The sun has a light which is not tangible, but which, nevertheless, can set a house on fire; thus the imagination is like a sun in man acting in that place to which its light is directed."
"Man is mind; he is what he thinks. If he thinks fire, he is on fire; if he thinks war, then will he cause war; it all depends merely on that the whole of his imagination becomes an entire sun; i.e., that he wholly imagines that which he wills " (De Virtute Imaginativa).
"The sun acts upon the visible soil of the earth, and upon invisible matter in the air; imagination acts upon the invisible substance of the soul, but the visible earth is formed from the invisible elements of the earth, and man's physical body is formed of his invisible astral soul. The soul of man is as intimately related to the soul of the earth as the physical body of the man is related to the physical body of the man, and they continually act upon each other, and without the soul the vehicle could not exist. Visible matter becomes invisible, and is acted on by the soul, and invisible matter becomes organised and is made visible again through the influence of the soul. If a pregnant woman imagines something strongly, the effects of her imagination will become manifest in the child.  Imagination springs from desire, and as man may have good or evil desires, likewise he may have a good or an evil imagination. A strong desire of either kind will give rise to a strong imagination. Curses as well as blessings will be effective if they come from the heart" (De Virtute Imaginativa). 
Nothing can come out of the sphere of the mind except what is drawn into it, and that which is drawn into it can come out. If a pregnant woman craves for strawberries, the image of strawberries will be drawn into her mind, and her imagination may impress a mark resembling a strawberry upon the child. Frogs do not grow in the sky, and if (as has happened) a multitude of frogs come down from it during a rain, these frogs must have been drawn up somewhere before they came down."
"The imagination of women is usually stronger than that of men. They are more passionate, stronger in love and stronger in hate, and their imagination may carry them during their sleep (in their astral forms) to other places, where they may be seen by others who are in the same state. They are then really at those places, and will remember what they have seen, although they were there without their physical bodies; for their minds were active at such places, and the mind is the real person, not the body that is asleep." 
If a pregnant woman forms an image in her mind and projects it by her desire, it will impress itself on the body of the child. "If, for instance, a woman in her imagination strongly conceives of a snail, and then puts her hand upon her knee, then will the image of the snail appear upon the knee of the child. Her will (although unconsciously) acts in this way like a master, bidding a painter to paint him a snail. Wherever the touch of the hand goes, there will be the image" (De Virtute Imaginativa).
"If a person dies, and seriously desires that another person should die with him, his imagination creates a force that will draw a vehicle from his dead body and give it shape, and this can be projected by the impulse given to it by the thought of the dying person towards that person, and cause him to die. Such is especially the case if a woman dies of puerperal fever,  and if such a woman wishes that the whole world should die with her, an epidemic may be the consequence of her poisoned imagination."
"Fear, terror, passion, desire, joy, and envy are six states of the mind which especially rule the imagination, and consequently the world of man; and as the mind of man is the microcosmic counterpart of the universal mind, the antitypes of these states are also active in the imagination of the world, and the thoughts of man act upon the latter as the latter acts upon him. It is therefore desirable that we should govern our imagination and not allow it to run wild. We should attempt to grasp the spirit by the power of the spirit, and not by speculative fancy"  (De Virtute Imaginativa).
"Man is a twofold being, having a divine and an animal nature. If he feels, and thinks, and acts as divine beings should act, he is a true man; if he feels and acts like an animal, he is then an animal, and the equal of those animals whose mental characteristics are manifested in him. An exalted imagination caused by a desire for the good raises him up; a low imagination caused by a desire for that which is low and vulgar drags him down and degrades him."
"The spirit is the master, imagination the tool, and the body the plastic material. Imagination is the power by which the will forms sidereal entities out of thoughts. Imagination is not fancy, which latter is the cornerstone of superstition and foolishness. The imagination of man becomes pregnant through desire, and gives birth to deeds. Every one may regulate and educate his imagination so as to come thereby into contact with spirits, and be taught by them. Spirits desiring to act upon man act upon his imagination,  and they therefore make often use of his dreams for the purpose of acting upon him. During sleep the sidereal man may by the power of the imagination be sent out of the physical form, at a distance to act for some purpose. No place is too far for the imagination to go, and the imagination of one man can impress that of another, wherever it reaches" (Philosophia Sagax).
"Imagination is the beginning of the growth of a form, and it guides the process of its growth. The Will is a dissolving power, which enables the body to become impregnated by the 'tincture' of the imagination. He who wants to know how a man can unite his power of imagination with the power of the imagination of Heaven, must know by what process this may be done. A man comes into possession of creative power by uniting his own mind with the Universal Mind, and he who succeeds in doing so will be in possession of the highest possible wisdom; the lower realm of Nature will be subject to him, and the powers of Heaven will aid him, because Heaven is the servant of wisdom." 
"Before man is born, and afterwards, his soul is not perfect, but it may be perfected through the power of a holy Will. Spirits are essential, visible, tangible, and sensitive in relation to other spirits.  They stand in a similar relation to each other, as physical bodies to other physical bodies. Spirits speak with each other through spirit, but not by means of audible speech. While the body is asleep, the soul may go to a distant place, and act intelligently at such place.  If it meets another spirit, whether it be an incarnated or a disincarnated one, they will act in regard to each other as two human beings act, if they meet. One man communicates his thoughts to another with whom he is in sympathy, at any distance, however great it may be,  or he may act upon the spirit of another person in such a manner as to influence his actions after the body of the latter awakens from his sleep.  In this way he can even injure the health of that person, and upon this law of Nature is based the possibility of witchcraft and sorcery."
"The exercise of true magic does not require any ceremonies or conjurations, or the making of circles or signs; it requires neither benedictions nor maledictions in words, neither verbal blessings nor curses; it only requires a strong faith in the omnipotent power of all good, that can accomplish everything if it acts through a human mind being in harmony with it, and without which nothing useful can be accomplished. True magic power consists in true faith, but true faith rests in spiritual knowledge, and without that kind of knowledge there can be no faith. If I know that divine wisdom can accomplish a certain thing through me, I have the true holy faith; but if I merely fancy or suppose that a thing might be possible, or if I attempt to persuade myself that I believe in its possibility, such a belief is no knowledge, and confers no faith. No one can have a true faith in a thing which is not true, because such a 'faith' would be merely a belief or opinion based upon ignorance of the truth."
Nothing can be accomplished without the power of faith. If a loaf of bread were laid on a table before a hungry man, and the man did not believe that he could break a piece of it, he would starve to death in spite of the loaf. "It is the faith which gives us power, and through the power of faith we become spirits ourselves, and able to use spiritual power. Faith renders the spirit strong; doubt is the destroyer. All that is accomplished over and beyond our terrestrial nature is accomplished by us through the power of faith. That in which we have faith requires no proofs. He who asks for proofs departs from the faith. If God speaks in us, we require no proofs of the truth of what He says; for we recognise it in the power of truth. This power is taken from nobody, unless he throws it himself away. The good as well as the evil-disposed ones can only be strong through faith. There is only one power of faith, but its application may be for good or for evil" (Morb. Invis.). 
"How can there be any true faith in a man who has not in himself the power of God? The godless do not believe in faith because they have none of it, even if they continually talk about it. They cannot know what 'faith' is. Where can we find a theologian who drove out an evil spirit, or made a spirit come, or who healed the sick by the power of God's will; not to mention the fact that no clergyman ever removed a mountain by means of his faith, or threw it into the ocean? But if some one produces a sign, be it good or evil, they denounce him and call him a sorcerer; for they are not capable to distinguish between magic and sorcery" (Philos. Occult., ii.).
"Faith is the cause of witchcraft and sorceries, by which means one person may injure another without running much risk of discovery; because he may kill or injure his enemy without going near him, and the latter cannot defend himself as he might if he were attacked by a visible foe. Great care should be taken that the powers of the faith are not misused, because in such a case it will be witchcraft. The witches  are the most dangerous persons in the world, if they use their evil will against anybody."
"It would be very easy to give instructions so that every one might convince himself of the truth of these statements, but such instructions might be misused by wicked persons who might employ such knowledge for evil purposes; and it is, moreover, not to be regretted if methods by which one man may injure another should not be publicly known.  But there are certain things that ought to be known to physicians, so that they may learn the cause of certain mysterious diseases, and know the means how to cure them, and to counteract evil influences by the power of good. There are, for instance, some sorcerers who make an image representing the person whom they desire to injure, and they drive a nail into the foot of that image, and evil will and malicious thought cause the person whom the image represents to experience a great pain in his foot, and to be unable to walk until the nail from the image is removed. Now, if a physician meets with such a case, and he does not know the cause of the pain in the foot of his patient, he will not be able to cure it; but if he knows the cause, he can employ the power of imagination to counteract the evil that has been caused by a similar power." 
"Thus, it has happened that nails and hair, needles, bristles, pieces of glass, and many other things have been cut or been pulled out of the bodies of certain patients, and were followed by other things of a similar character, and that such a state of affairs continued for many weeks or months, and the physicians stood there helpless, and did not know what to do. But if they had better understood their business, they would have known that these things had been brought into the body of a patient by the power of the evil imagination of a sorcerer, and they might have put one of the extracted articles into an elder or oak tree, on the side directed towards the rising sun, and that article would have acted like a magnet to attract the evil influence, and it would have cured the patient."
"A strong will subdues a weaker one, and therefore the first necessary condition for the purpose of producing magic effects is the development of the will. The power of the will acts more readily upon animals than upon man, because the soul of man, being supported by the divine spirit, has more power to defend itself against the influence of a foreign will than the sidereal body of animals. The will of a waking man will act upon another person, who may be awake or asleep; but it can also happen that one man acts spiritually upon another while both are asleep; the astral form of a sleeping person can visit another person in his dream, and influence the latter to love him; or it may injure that person, or perhaps cause him to perform something which he would not perform if left to himself."
In regard to the action of the will at a distance, Paracelsus says: "As to images of wax (which are made for the purpose of assisting the imagination and concentrating the will), I will tell you that, if a person desires to injure an enemy, he may do so through some medium; i.e., a vehicle. In this way it is possible that my spirit, without the assistance of my body and without a sword, can kill or wound another person simply by the action of my will. It is furthermore possible that I may bring the spirit of my enemy into an image, and afterwards injure or lame him in the image according to my will, and that the body of that enemy will be correspondingly injured or lamed thereby. The power of the will is the main point in medicine. A man who wishes every one well will produce good effects. One who begrudges everybody everything good, and is full of hate, will experience on his own person the effects of his evil thoughts. Images may be cursed, and diseases such as fevers, epilepsy, apoplexy, &c. -- thereby be caused to the persons whom those images are made to represent. I am speaking seriously. Our physicians know only a very small part of the power of the will. The will creates spirits (forces) that have nothing to do with reasoning but obey blindly"  (Paramirum, tract, iv. cap. viii.).
"Faith stimulates and elevates the power of the spirit A person who has a strong faith feels as if he were lifted up, and were living independent of the body. By the power of faith the apostles and patriarchs accomplished great things that were above the ordinary run of Nature, and the saints performed their miracles  by the power of faith. Such miracles as were performed by them during their lifetime were performed by their own faith; other miracles that took place through their relics or near their tombs were caused by the power of faith of those who asked their help. All the wonders of Magic are performed by Imagination and Faith."
In producing magical cures, it is the power of faith in the patient himself, and not the dead saint or the relic, that cures the disease.
"A dead saint cannot cure anybody. A living saint may cure the sick by virtue of the divine power that acts through him. This divine power does not die with the body of the saint, and therefore true saints are still living, although their mortal bodies have died. The power which enabled the saints to work miracles is still alive, and accessible to all. It is the power of the Holy Ghost, and if you live in God He will overshadow you with that power, and it will teach you the laws of God, and you will be guided like other saints, even as the apostles Peter or Paul" (De Sanctorum Beneficiis Vindictis).
"Faith has a great deal more power than the physical body. You are visible and corporeal, but there is still an invisible man in you, and that invisible man is yourself too. Each act performed by your body is performed by the invisible man. The one acts in a visible, the other in an invisible, manner. If an injury is inflicted upon the invisible man, that injury will be reproduced on his visible body.  Such things can be done, but it is very wrong to attempt them. "Whoever attempts them is tempting God, and he who succeeds will seriously injure his own soul. There have been people who have made images of wax representing certain persons of the opposite sex, and they melted such forms by the heat of a light, to assist their own evil imagination, and by using their faith they have succeeded in enticing those persons into an unlawful love. The Chaldaeans and Egyptians used to make images according to the constellations of the stars, and these images moved and talked, but they did not know the powers that acted in them. Such things are done by faith, but it is not the true faith in God, but a devilish faith, supported by the desire for evil; because a faith that kills and injures men is not good; a true faith can only come from the source of all good, in which there can be no evil, and that which is not good is not true. Evil belongs to the world, because without evil good could not be known or appreciated; but in the source of good there can be no evil." 
"True faith has wonderful powers, and this fact proves that we are spirits, and not merely visible bodies. Faith accomplishes that which the body would accomplish if it had the power. Man is created with great powers; he is greater than heaven and greater than the earth. He possesses faith, and when his faith has become a conscious power in him it will be a light more powerful and superior to natural light, and stronger than all mortal creatures. All magic processes are based upon that faith. By faith and imagination we can accomplish whatever we desire. The true power of faith overcomes all the spirits of Nature, because it is a spiritual power, and spirit is higher than Nature. Whatever is grown in the realm of Nature may be changed by the power of faith. Whatever we accomplish that surpasses Nature is accomplished by the power of faith, and by faith diseases may be cured"  (Philosophia Sagax).
"The sidereal man is of a magnetic nature, and for that reason he can attract the powers and effluvia of the astral-world. If, therefore, any inimical astral influences are circulating in the All of Nature, the man becomes sick, and if these currents change he will become well again. The same thing happens if a good or an evil thought, supported by a strong faith, changes or creates currents that act upon the sidereal man." 
The astral currents created by the imagination of the Macrocosmos act upon the Microcosmos, and produce certain states in the latter, and thus also the astral currents produced by the imagination and will of man produce certain states in external Nature, and these currents reach very far, because the power of the imagination reaches as far as thought can go. The physiological processes taking place in the body of living beings are caused by their life currents, and the physiological and meteorological processes taking place in the great organism of Nature are caused by the life currents of Nature as a whole. The astral currents of either act upon the other, either consciously or unconsciously, and if this fact is properly understood it will cease to appear incredible that the mind of man can produce changes in the universal mind, which will cause changes in the atmosphere, winds and rains, storms, hail, and lightning, or that evil may be changed into good by the power of faith. "Heaven (the mind) is a field into which the imagination of man throws the seeds. Nature is an artist that develops the seeds, and what is caused by Nature may be imitated by Art" (De Sagis et eorum Operibus).
"To conjure the spirit of a thing means to seek after the truth which that thing represents. To see the spirit of a thing means to recognise the character of that thing, with all its qualities and attributes.  To make the spirit of a thing subservient to one's power is to know how to use the powers that are hidden in such a thing for our own purposes. If I know the attributes of a thing, I know its spirit. If I can make use of the qualities of a thing, its spirit will be my servant. Nothing can be known of a thing unless we succeed in making its character appear plain to our understanding."
"The vehicle through which the will acts for effectuating good or evil is the living Mumia. Mumia  is a vehicle that contains the essence of life. If we eat the flesh of animals, it is not their flesh itself that forms again blood and bones in our bodies, but the invisible vehicle of life derived from the flesh of these animals is taken up into our bodies, and forms new tissues and organs. If an animal dies in consequence of some internal disease, we do not eat its flesh, because its Mumia has been poisoned by its disease; neither do we eat the flesh of animals that died of old age, nor the flesh of a rotten carcass, because its healthy Mumia has departed on account of the decomposition, and what is left of the Mumia has been poisoned by the process of putrefaction. The Mumia of a living being partakes of the characteristics of the being from which it is taken. For this reason we do not eat the flesh of ferocious animals, such as tigers, lions, wild-cats, &c. They contain a fiery Mumia which stimulates the astral essences of man, and causes in him such tendencies as were the characteristics of the animals from which they are taken.  We eat the flesh of domestic animals, because their character is more gentle and their Mumia less exciting, such as the stupid ox, the gentle sheep, &c.; but the healthiest animal food is the flesh of birds, because they live in the air, and the air is the noblest of the four elements."
The "Mumia" of a thing is its life-principle. "From the use of the Mumia have resulted the greatest and mysterious magnetic cures; for some persons who have learned to know and understand the action and power of their own Mumia, and that even a small dose of it attracts unto itself the powers of the whole body, like the magnet attracts iron, have in this way cured themselves of many ills "(Philosoph., tract iii.).
"The Mumia of the dead body is useless, and the Mumia that is prepared by embalming a corpse is good for nothing but to serve as food for worms. The most efficacious Mumia is that of a person who died in an unnatural manner while his body was in good health; such a one, for instance, as has been hung or decapitated, or whose body has been broken on the wheel. A person who dies a slow death in consequence of some disease loses his powers before he dies, and putrefaction begins often in such cases even while the patient is still alive. His Mumia will then be worthless. But if our physicians knew the occult powers of the Mumia of persons that have died sudden deaths, they would not permit the body of an executed criminal to hang at the gallows for over three days, but they would take it away and use it for medical purposes. Such a Mumia is very powerful, especially after it has been exposed to the influence of the air, the sun, and the moon."
"The Mumia of a being who dies a violent death in the air returns to the air; the Mumia of a body is taken up by that element in which the body is decomposed. If a person is drowned, his Mumia will go to the element of water; if he is burnt, it will go to that of the fire"  (Philosoph., tract iii).
"These three kinds of Mumia have very wonderful occult powers, and many strange feats may be performed through their use by those who know how to employ them, especially by such as have taken the Mumia themselves from the persons for whose life it served as a vehicle. Such people are executioners, hangmen, and murderers, and the latter sometimes kill a man for the mere purpose of obtaining his Mumia to perform wicked things. But for such people it would have been better if a millstone had been hung about their necks and they had been thrown into the sea, because they will themselves end in a pitiful manner, and their souls will experience the evil which they themselves have created." 
On account of the great occult power contained in the Mumia, it is used in witchcraft and sorcery. "Witches and sorcerers may make a bargain with evil spirits, and cause them to carry the Mumia to certain places where it will come in contact with other people, without the knowledge of the latter, and cause them harm. They take earth from the graves of people who have died of the plague, and infect other people with it. They also infect the cattle, spoil the milk,  and cause a great deal of damage, and the injured people do not know the cause of the evils that afflict them. A great deal might be said in regard to this subject, but we will not write it down, because we do not desire to give instructions in sorcery, or enable the wicked to use the knowledge obtained for the purpose of injuring others" (De Pestilitate).
"It is very desirable that some good and wise men, well versed in the secret arts, should be appointed by the authorities to counteract and prevent the evils produced by the wicked who practise witchcraft and sorcery, and they should pay particular attention to convents, monasteries, and houses of prostitution, because in such places a lascivious and evil imagination is especially cultivated, and great quantities of sperma are there collected by evil spirits, and that sperma contains a powerful Mumia, which can be extracted, and transformed into evil things; or it may decompose and become a strong poison, furnishing life to innumerable invisible (microscopic) existences, by which epidemics and plagues will be caused. One witch may poison another by such means, and the familiar spirits of witches often steal sperma from persons who are addicted to bad habits and use it for evil purposes."
"An especially powerful poison that may be used in sorcery is the menstrual blood.
"If a woman exposes a cloth impregnated with the menstrual blood to the rays of the new moon at night, and to the rays of the sun during the day, a powerful basilisk [a legendary serpent or dragon with lethal breath and glance] is created, because it attracts the 'magnes salis.' This invisible poison can give rise to many and various diseases, because the moon is the 'menstruum mundi,' and exercises a very evil influence. Gold attracts mercury and amalgamates with it, and likewise the sun attracts the 'mercurium menstrui mulierum.' The moon exerts a certain evil influence periodically every month, and the 'menstruum mulierum' is renewed periodically every month, and during such periods there is an especially strong sympathy between them."
"Women should know such things and pay attention to them, else they may run great danger. It is a known fact that during the time of a plague many more women die than men. It is also known that women who, on account of their age, have lost the power to menstruate, are more powerful than others to effect evil spells and sorceries, and to injure men and animals. 
"If you take turpentine and distil it, the spirit of turpentine will go away and the rosin remain; and if you mix the rosin again with the spirit, you will have your turpentine again as it was before. In a similar way the human blood contains an airy, fiery spirit, and this spirit has its centre in the heart, where it is most condensed, and from which it radiates, and the radiating rays return to the heart. Thus the world has its fiery spirit pervading the atmosphere, and its centre is called the sun, and the influences radiating from the sun return to that centre. The sun radiates heat and attracts the vapours of the earth, and likewise the heart of man attracts the 'humidum menstrui,' which is a poisonous planetary exhalation of the Microcosm of woman. The 'spiritus vitoe cerebri' of an insane person is attracted towards the moon in the same manner as the needle of the compass is attracted towards the Pole, and such a person will therefore -- especially at the time of the new moon, when that attraction is the strongest -- grow worse, and begin to rave; and likewise the sensitive spirit (aura) of a man who is weak and offers no resistance will be attracted towards the moon and be poisoned by its evil influence."
"The witches and evil spirits, moreover, use certain invisible and poisonous elements, taken from spiders, toads, and other villainous creatures, and use them in combination with the menstrual blood for evil purposes; but it is not advisable to publish the secret how this is done. We will, however, say that sometimes they make an image of a person in wax, and tie a rag, soiled with the menstrual blood, around it, and add the Mumia of the carcass of some animal -- preferring one of an animal that has died of an ulcer and by using their evil imagination they throw the evil spell upon the person whom the image represents, and in this manner they poison his blood and cause him to die." 
"They sometimes take a mirror set in a wooden frame, and put it into a tub of water, so that it will swim on the top with its face directed towards the sky. On the top of the mirror, and encircling the glass, they lay a wreath of Sinechrusmontes Behdem, and thus they expose it to the influence of the new moon; and this evil influence is thrown towards the moon, and, radiating again from the moon, it will bring evil to those who love to look at the moon. The rays of the moon, passing through that ring upon the mirror, become poisoned, and poison the mirror; and the mirror throws back the poisoned ether into the atmosphere, and the moon and the mirror poison each other in the same manner as two malicious persons, by looking at each other, poison each other's souls with their eyes. If a mirror is strongly poisoned in this manner, the witch takes good care of it; and if she desires to injure some one, she takes a waxen image made in his name, she surrounds it with a cloth spotted with the menstrual blood, and throws the reflex of the mirror through the opening in the middle of the head of the figure, or upon some other part of his body, using at the same time her evil imagination and curses; and the man whom the image represents will then have his vitality dried up and his blood poisoned by that evil influence, and become diseased, and his body covered with boils. Such is the 'pestis particularis,' which may be known if it affects a man who has not been near any other persons or places from which he might have caught the disease."
"But if a witch desires to poison a man with her eyes, she will go to a place where she expects to meet him. When he approaches she will look into the poisoned mirror, and then, after hiding the mirror, look into his eyes, and the influence of the poison passes from the mirror into her eyes, and from her eyes into the eyes of that person; but the witch cures her own eyes by making a fire and staring into it, and then taking the menstrual cloth, and, after tying it around a stone, throwing it into the fire. After the cloth is burned she extinguishes the fire with her urine, and her eyes will be cured; but her enemy will become blind" (De Pestilitate).
"There are, furthermore, certain substances used by witches and sorcerers which they give to other persons in their food or drink, and by which they render those persons insane, and such an insanity manifests itself in various ways. Sometimes it renders men or women amorous, or it makes them quarrelsome; it causes them to be very courageous and daring, or turns them into cowards. Some will fall deeply in love with the person who administered to them such philtres; and it has happened that in this way masters and mistresses have fallen deeply in love with the servants who administered to them such things, and thus they became themselves the servants of their own servants. Even horses, dogs, and other animals have thus been brought under the influence of such spells. If women administer such things to men, the latter may fall so deeply in love with the former as to be unable to think of anything else but of them; and if men administer such things to women, they will continually think of them" (De Morbis Amentium).
"But the things which such persons use for such purposes are nothing else but substances that have long been in contact with their own bodies, and which contain a part of their own vitality. Women are more successful in such experiments, because they are more impulsive, more implacable in their revenge, and more inclined to envy and hate. If they are fully absorbed by their own imagination, they call into existence an active spirit that moves their imagination wherever they may desire it to go. A wood-carver takes a piece of wood and carves out of it whatever he has in his mind, and likewise the imagination can create something out of the essence of life. The Mumia is the vehicle of which the imagination makes use for the purpose of taking some form.  It is lifted up and expanded by the power of faith, and it contracts and penetrates the mind by being impressed by the will. Women have a greater power of imagination during their dreams and when they are alone; and they ought, therefore, not to be left alone a great deal, but ought to be amused, because if they are ill-disposed and harbouring evil thoughts, they may, by the power of their imagination, poison the food which they cook, or make it impure, without being themselves aware of it. Women who are occupied a great deal with an evil imagination, and who are unable to control it, should not be permitted to nurse and educate infants, because the impressions which their imagination creates unconsciously impresses itself and acts injuriously upon the minds of the children. The imagination is the cause that beings have been created out of the 'Mumia spiritualis' which possesses great powers"  (Fragment: De Virtute Imaginationoe).
"By the power of the imagination foreign bodies are transferred invisibly into the bodies of human beings, in the same manner as if I take a stone in my hand and put it into a tub of water, and, withdrawing my hand, I leave the stone in the water. Menstruating witches especially may dissolve (dematerialise) bodies by the power of their imagination. They make a figure of wax representing the person whom they wish to injure, and they tie a cloth spotted with menstrual blood around the neck of that figure, and attach it there by means of a string drawn through the pulpy mass of a crushed spider. They then take a bow and an arrow made of a certain kind of wood; they tie pieces of glass, or nails, or bristles, or anything else, to that arrow, and shoot it into the waxen image; and in this way the articles dissolved by their imagination are by the power of the Mumia transmitted into the body of the sensitive person, and there they will be found in a corporeal form" (De Sagis).
"The power of the imagination is a great factor in medicine. It produces diseases in man and in animals, and it cures them. But this is not done by the powers of symbols or characters made in wax or being written on paper, but by an imagination which perfects the will. All the imagination of man comes from the heart. The heart is the 'seed' of the Microcosm, and from that seed the imagination proceeds into the Macrocosm. Thus the imagination of man is a seed that becomes materialised or corporeal. A thought is an act having an object in view. I need not turn my eye with my hand in the direction in which I desire to see, but my imagination turns it wherever I want it. An imagination coming from a pure and intense desire of the heart acts instinctively and without any conscious effort. The power of a strong imagination directed upon another can kill or cure him according to the nature of the desire that impels the force, and which may be good or evil. Therefore a curse will become productive of evil, and a blessing productive of good, if it comes from the heart." 
"The curse of the oppressed poor is nothing but an imagination; but that imagination is firm, and not a wavering and uncertain thing. It is penetrated by and followed with an earnest desire that the object of their wish shall be accomplished, and that which men desire in cursing enters into their imagination, and from the imagination results the act. The evil elements in the soul of him who acted evil attract unto themselves the evil will set free by the curse of him who has been injured; for the soul is like a magnet, attracting unconsciously that which corresponds to its nature" (Fragm.).
"Magic is great hidden wisdom, just as that which is commonly called human wisdom is great folly. To use wisdom, no external ceremonies and conjurations are required. The making of circles and the burning of incense are all tomfoolery and temptation, by which only evil spirits are attracted. The human heart is a great thing, so great that no one can fully express its greatness. It is imperishable and eternal, like God. If we only knew all the powers of the human heart, nothing would be impossible for us. The imagination is fortified and perfected through faith, and each doubt destroys the effect of its labour. Faith must confirm the imagination, because it perfects the will. The reason why men have not a perfect imagination is because they are still uncertain about their power, but they might be perfectly certain if they only possessed true knowledge."
"If the imagination of a man acting upon another cannot always accomplish what he desires, it is because it is too weak to penetrate the armour of the soul of that other person, and a weak imagination has no effect upon another person, if the latter is protected by a strong and resisting faith; and each one may strengthen his own faith and make his soul invulnerable by believing in the supreme power of Good"  (De Peste., lib. i.).
"Those who are strong in their faith, and full of confidence that the divine power in man can protect him against all evil influences, whether they come from an incarnated or a disincarnated entity, cannot be harmed by either. But if a weak person is obsessed by such an evil influence and is unable to drive it out, then it is necessary that some other person who possesses that spiritual power should drive it out in his place. A worm may grow in a hazel-nut although the shell of the nut is whole, and there is no place where the worm could have entered. Thus an evil spirit enters into the body of a man and produces some disease without making a hole into him. If the mind is weak and the soul not protected by faith and confidence, it will enter; and therefore the best remedy is a strong mind, illuminated by the interior light of wisdom coming from God."
"Ills of the body may be cured by physical remedies or by the power of the spirit acting through the soul. Ills of the soul are cured by the power of the spirit, but to do this requires more than mere lip prayer and gibberish and idle ceremonies; it needs the consciousness of the spirit that it can accomplish that which it desires to do. A paternoster is useless if the lips speak it while the heart desires evil. He who is dressed up like a clergyman is therefore not necessarily a spiritual person, although he may have been ordained by the Church. To be ordained by man does not imply the possession of spiritual power, because such a power can only be given by the spirit; he who possesses the power to cure diseases and to drive out evil influences by the power of the spirit is ordained by God. The others are quacks and maleficants, in spite of their superstitious beliefs, their illusory science, diplomas, and manmade authority" (De Sanctorum Beneficiis).
"God looks at the heart and not at the ceremony. All fasting and praying done by hypocrites for the purpose of showing off their piety is the work of the devil in them. All blessings and benedictions with 'holy water,' &c., are things which the devil has invented to make men believe that they could dispense with God and find their salvation in ceremonies. St. Peter is not superior to God, neither can the spirits in man do anything but what the Lord in him permits them to do. All good things should be sought for in God, and not in the spirits or saints; neither in angels nor devils. If we give the true faith out of our hand we will be without it; if God departs from the soul, then will the evil spirits therein have free play" (Morb. Invis.).
If the followers of the Christian Church or the modern "theosophists" were to realise these truths, they would cease to kneel before external Christs or run after strange "Mahatmas," and every one would try to know the Christ or "Mahatma" within himself.
1. Magic is the knowledge of how to employ spiritual powers; but it is self-evident that nobody can employ any spiritual powers unless he has come into their possession by the awakening of his own spirituality; nor can any one become spiritual by merely imagining himself to be so. It is therefore not surprising that in an age in which the very meaning of the term 'spiritual' became incomprehensible to the learned, the meaning of 'magic' has become also a mystery."
2. The word "supernatural," as employed by Paracelsus, does not imply anything beyond Nature as a whole, because nothing exists beyond the All, but it means that which transcends Nature in her lower aspect, or a higher or spiritual aspect of Nature than the merely mechanical and physiological part of her work. If, for instance, we follow our instincts, we act naturally that is to say, according to the demands of our animal nature; but if we resist natural impulses by the power of will and reason, we employ powers belonging to a higher order of Nature. If we avoid to do evil on account of the evil consequences which it would cause to ourselves, we act naturally; but if we avoid it on account of an inherent love of principle, we act in the wisdom of God.
3. The will is only free when it is free from the delusion of self and its desires.
4. All sciences are false if they are godless; that is, if they seek for the first origin of anything anywhere else but in divine truth.
5. All phenomenal science springs from a knowledge of phenomena, and is therefore only relative and subject to change.
6. During sleep the soul, so to say, separates itself to a certain extent from the body, and lives in its own sphere. If a man does not remember his soul experiences after his body awakens, it is because the union of his personal mind with his spiritual understanding has not yet taken place.
7. There is nothing to prevent any person from seeing by this inner light of Nature, except the errors, prejudices, and misconceptions which are caused by the illusions of the senses, and which are intensified by an education in a system of philosophy which mistakes these errors for fundamental truths. The truth can only be found where it is. A knowledge of the supreme power of the universe cannot be obtained by denying its existence. Life cannot be found in an empty form.
8. Here Paracelsus does not refer merely to the faculty of ordinary clairvoyance, but to the true inner comprehension, to the "spirit of Nature" which reveals all things in its own light. It is, in other words, the Holy Ghost or the true spiritual understanding within the higher region of the mind, above the "constellation."
9. Such modes of divination are well known to modern spiritualists.
10. The astral duplicate of the writing is seen by the astral sense.
11. Man possesses that power from birth, but the majority lose it afterwards by neglecting to use it, and in consequence of concentrating all their attention upon the illusions of the material plane. Moreover, the organs for the finer perceptions become paralysed and atrophied by the use of alcoholic drinks.
12. Dreams or visions of a true spiritual origin make usually a very strong impression, and are then not easily forgotten.
13. Thus, for instance, we may dream of a death and burial, and the cause of that dream may be that one of the animal elementals in our own constitution has died, or, in other words, that we have become free from some degrading idea or element, an event which is surely a cause for joy.
14. All such practices have a certain scientific reason. The experiments of Reichenbach with the magnetic or odic emanations of persons and objects have shown the great effect they have upon sensitive organisms; but to try such experiments upon hardened sceptics and habitual deniers is like testing the powers of a magnet upon a piece of wood.
15. For this reason pregnant women should during the time of their pregnancy have beautiful surroundings and think noble and beautiful thoughts.
16. If we do not think that which we speak, our words will be empty talk. He who thinks many things disperses his power in many directions; he who thinks and wills only one thing is powerful.
17. This passage refers to the excursions of witches on the Hartz Mountains and other places, often spoken of in the witch trials. Many supposed witches were burnt to death for having confessed that they had attended at such meetings.
18. It is well known that the corpses of women having died of puerperal fever are very infectious, and dissecting wounds received in such cases are especially dangerous. The passage implies that the invisible astral substance may draw contagion from the poisonous body, and spread it by the power of an evil will.
19. This means that we should be able to feel the truth with our souls, without reasoning about it from an objective standpoint. We should realise the truth by being one with it, and not examine it as if it were something strange and separate from ourselves.
20. Even physical sight depends on the imagination. If we behold an object, it is not scientific to say, "I see;" but we ought to say, "I imagine to see."
21. This, however, no man can do by exercising his own self-will; but it is accomplished by the divine will in him, into which he must enter himself, it being that of his higher self.
22. The term "spirits" refers here to intelligent souls.
23. It may happen that the spirit of a person will go to a distant place while the body is asleep, and act intelligently there, and that the man, after awakening from his sleep, remembers nothing about it. But an adept, in whom spiritual consciousness is his normal state, can do so knowingly and consciously, and remember all about it after his spirit (Majavi-Rupa) returns to his body.
24. Any one may make successful scientific experiments with thought-transference. Similar scientific experiments for long distances will be more difficult, on account of the differences of time, place, and conditions, and because spiritually enlightened persons, possessing great power of impressing their thoughts at great distances, are at present not easily found.
25. It has been proved by many experiments that a person thrown into a mesmeric sleep by a mesmeriser may be requested to do certain things after he awakens from his sleep, and that after he awakens he will perform such actions, although he will not remember what has taken place during his sleep. It is therefore very fortunate that, in the present state of morality of our modern civilisation, such powers are not generally known, and that they are not often in the possession of those who wish to abuse them.
26. Faith is not based upon any intellectual comprehension, but it is the true spiritual understanding. It is not a belief in some external aid, but the inner consciousness of the possession of power. If Joshua Davidson broke his leg by jumping from a two-story window for the purpose of proving his faith to himself, it was because he superstitiously believed that some external power would protect him in his fall, and he knew nothing of the power of the god, his own self. His faith was an artificial and not a natural one. He knew nothing about God; that is to say, he had no divine will; he placed his confidence in the say-so of the theologians, but not in his own perception of truth.
27. They are now called "hypnotisers."
28. It may be remarked that the processes given below would not be effective if employed by any one who is not in possession of power to make them effective, and we see, therefore, no cause why they should not be published. Those who possess such evil powers know these things already.
29. If the representatives of modern erudition would take some trouble to inquire in an unsophisticated manner among the country populations of Europe, they would he surprised at the great amount of evil that is still caused by sorcery, either consciously or unconsciously employed. Such things are all caused by natural means, but with whose character our modern sceptics are not acquainted.
30. We would not advise any reader to make any such experiment, because, apart from the immorality of such a practice, it is known to every occultist that if such an evil power is once propelled, and is not of sufficient strength to penetrate the soul-sphere of his object, and to accomplish its purpose, it rebounds with a destructive effect to the source from whence it was projected.
31. The term "miracles" means natural feats produced by spiritual power. If a person acts against his own natural instincts -- if he, for instance, performs an act of unselfishness without any hope of reward such an act may be called a supernatural act. The natural law for self is selfishness, and if a man causes his selfish nature to act in a manner that goes against the interests of that nature, he acts in the strength of a power that is beyond his selfish nature and supernatural to it, although that power is not outside of him. Spirit may manifest itself in Nature, but it is not produced by Nature. God is the original cause of all things; Nature is an effect, God is the will; Nature its manifestation.
32. What a great field would be opened to the delight of our "physiological institutes" and vivisectors for the gratification of their morbid scientific curiosity if this art were taught, or if they believed in its possibility! Fortunately the scepticism of the fool is his own best protection against the evils that would arise from premature knowledge, and also the best protection for mankind against the injury he would otherwise inflict. But that such things can be done will be clear to every intelligent student of mediaeval witchcraft, and they are still done this very day, several such cases having recently come within the personal knowledge of the author.
33. Absolute good cannot be evil, but requires the presence of relative evil to become manifest.
34. However much this may be disputed in theory by superficial reasoners, it is nevertheless accepted in practice even by the most sceptical practitioners of medicine. A physician who has no confidence or faith in his own ability will not accomplish much. Moreover, physicians often have each one his own favourite remedy, which will act successfully, if employed by one, and fail in the hands of another, and this can be explained by the fact that one physician has more faith in his own favourite remedy than in that of another.
35. "The whole world is like a man and a woman, and has also its anima and its spiritus imaginationis; only much stronger and more powerfully than man.” The spirit orders, the will (matter) obeys; thought (imagination) directs, the soul (the body) executes and produces, be it intellectually or without intelligence.
36. The "spirit" of a thing is represented by the sum of its qualities.
37. The odic or "magnetic" body, containing the life-principle.
38. One reason why any one who desires to develop his spirituality should, if his condition otherwise permits it, adopt a vegetarian diet, is that the flesh of animals exercises a stimulating effect upon the lower and animal instincts, which ought to be overcome instead of being aroused. The scientific explanation of this action of flesh is, that each material thing is an expression of its soul, and that it contains some of the qualities of that soul or life (Kama), and communicates them to a certain extent to those in whom it is taken up.
39. Those who are to a certain extent acquainted with modern spiritualism will know that usually at the beginning of a strong "physical manifestation" a cold draught of air is felt, and sometimes even a corpse-like odour pervades the air of the room where the seance is held. This is caused by the presence of the astral body of the dead bringing with it the elements if its surroundings, such as are connected with its Mumia, from the grave. If it is the "spirit" of a drowned person, the air in the room will appear to become damp and musty, or perhaps a sprinkling of spray may take place. Moreover, if the "spirit" of a person who was a great drunkard manifests itself, the air may become pervaded with the odour of alcohol.
40. The final fate of sorcerers and black magicians has often been alluded to in writings on occultism. The organisation of spiritual forces which they create, and in which their consciousness and sensation rests, is very strong; but as it does not receive its life from the Supreme Spirit, it is not immortal, and its dissolution will therefore be painful and slow, but certain.
41. Note. I have taken especial pains to investigate this subject, and I have come to the conclusion that, if such persons make a bargain with evil spirits, they usually do this effectually, not by any talk or ceremonies, but by entering into a state of harmony of feeling (coming en rapport) with such evil entities, and they may do this unconsciously or unknowingly in their normal state, or it may be that only the sidereal man knows that such a compact exists. Such "sorcerers" are often evil-disposed but ignorant persons, who perhaps do not even know that they possess such powers, and they "bewitch" persons simply by the power of their ill-will, guided by some unseen intelligence, and without being themselves conscious of their success; but in other instances they know it. The fact that such sorceries do occur will not be doubted by any one who has investigated the subject. They occur to a great extent among the country people in Europe, and especially in Roman Catholic countries. In Bavaria and Tyrol the country people are always suspicious of strangers, whom they believe capable of bewitching their cattle. They will not permit such strangers to enter their stables if the latter do not pronounce a blessing on entering it; and if they are afraid of the evil power of some neighbour, they will, under no circumstance, lend any article to him or accept anything from him. Several cases of "bewitched cattle" and "blue milk" are known to me personally, of which I will mention the following as an example: --
At a farm-house not far from Munich the milk became one day "blue"; after having been deposited in the usual place it began to darken, became lightly blue, and that colour after a while deepened into an almost inky darkness, while the layer of cream exhibited zigzag lines, and soon the whole mass began to putrefy and to emit a horrible odour. This occurred again and again every day, and the farmer was in despair. Everything was attempted to find out the cause of the trouble; the stable was thoroughly cleaned, the place where the milk was kept was changed, a different food was given to the cattle, and samples of the milk were sent to Munich to be examined by chemists; the old milk-pots were replaced by new ones, &c., but nothing produced a change in the existing state of affairs.
At last my sister, the Countess S ___, who resided in the neighbourhood, hearing of these things, went to that farm-house to investigate the matter. She took with her a clean, new bottle, and filled it with the milk as it came from the bewitched cows. This milk she took home with her and deposited it in her own pantry, and from that day the trouble in the house of her neighbour ceased, and all the milk in her own house became blue. Here again everything was tried to find out the cause, but without any success, until, about three months afterwards, some old lady living about 300 miles distant effected another spell by her own occult powers, using some slips of paper, on which she wrote something, and in consequence of which the trouble ceased. Before it ceased, however, something strange happened. Before daybreak, as the milkmaid was about to enter the stable, some black thing like an animal rushed out of the half-opened door, knocked the milk-pail and the lantern out of her hands, and disappeared. After this all went well again.
On another occasion, in a similar case which took place in the same neighbourhood, the owner of the bewitched cattle was advised to take a sample of the milk from each cow, to mix them in a pan, to boil it over a slow fire, and to whip it with a rod while it was boiling down, and to throw the rest away. This advice he followed, and on the next day a person of ill repute was met, having his face covered with bloody streaks, as if they had been inflicted with a rod. This man could give no satisfactory account of the origin of his marks, and it is supposed that he was the punished sorcerer. The trouble then ceased. These examples go to corroborate what Paracelsus says about the Mumia.
42. This was a common belief during the Middle Ages, and many a poor old woman has been burned to death for having been suspected of being a witch. This, however, does not invalidate the statements of Paracelsus. In women, on the whole, the will is more active than in men, and they are less liable to exercise self-control. A woman having become disappointed in love and embittered with the world becomes a suitable instrument for the powers of evil to act through her organism. Woman is more powerful for good and for evil than males, because she represents will and substance, and man only the imagination.
43. Poisonous and malicious animals are forms of life in which an evil quality of the poisoned will in Nature has become manifest.
44. The more the physical body is active, the more will it need material food. The more the astral body is active, the more will it attract nutriment from the astral plane. The more divine love is active in man, the more will his soul receive of the substance of Christ. Each of these three states has its own functions and qualities.
45. According to Paracelsus, the characteristic signs by which witches can be known, or which justify the suspicion of a person being a witch, are as follows: --
46. The weak-minded people of our present civilisation know nothing about an imagination that comes from the heart. They live entirely in their brains, in moonshine and fancy. What Paracelsus calls the imagination of the heart, and H. P. Blavatsky the “doctrine of the heart," is the self-conscious will enlightened by intelligence.
47. Fear makes a person negative and liable to be infected. During the time of epidemic diseases, those who are not afraid of being infected are the least liable to become their victims. He who is confident that he cannot be affected by sorceries is not liable to become their victim.
48. "He who fears thinks of nothing but evil. He has no confidence in God (in himself); he only imagines diseases and death, and thus he creates diseases in his imagination, and ultimately makes himself sick" (De Pestilitate, ii.).