Azoth of the Philosophers copyright Dee Rapposelli http://www.deerapposelli.com
I am in the process of making low tables and bomos (altar tables) with my digital art. This image is a intended to become a bomos and is an adaption of an alchemical mandala that has long fascinated me and many others. That mandala is the 12th plate of an alchemical picture book called The Azoth of the Philosophers. It depicts the process of alchemy--both as a laboratory exercise and as spiritual pathwork via ascension through the planetary spheres (the Western equivalent of "chakras").
As I have explained in the book The Seal of Secrets of theWorld Adventures in Planetary Magic, which addresses my work with the Arbatel, Western magical mandala and seals are similar to Eastern mandalas and yantras in that they are mnemonic instruments made of symbols that are understood by and/or provide revelatory contemplative experiences for the initiated.
The term Azoth is thought to be derived from the Arabic al za’uq : “the mercury.” It may also be meant to suggest “A-to-Z” –the totality of name and form, as is meant in the terms Alpha-Omega and A-U-Mg (popularly written as Om). It is said to be the life principle.
The sun, moon, and cube of salt in the image represent sulfur, mercury, and salt and also soul, spirit, and body. I refer the reader to thispost by art curator Johnes Ruta for more insight on the meaning of the sulfur, mercury, salt triad.
This image, and philosophical alchemy in general inspired the second book in a series of cross-genrre fantasy/metaphysical/occult fiction that I wrote a few years ago and self-published. The second book in the series is called The Fallen Fairy (originally titled The Sex Lives of Sorcerers and I think an old, not as tightly edited print version of the novel is still out there on amazon). Ostensibly about what happens when sorcerers from an alternate plane of existence vie to catch and control a human incarnation of a fairy, it, like all of my novels, is about the nature of self, transformation, and redemption.