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3: Alchemical Exercises for Separation | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 |

Identifying Essences is part of the process to develop of a self-depreciating attitude as we become aware of all the tricks, illusions, fantasies, and monsters engendered by the id and ego and unconscious mind. First, identify the opposites within, then unite them to create a new consciousness without ego contamination and complexes. The purpose of separation is the classification and analysis of previously hidden material by the rational mind to extract a person’s essence, discarding what is no longer relevant or useful. IT requires a sharp, decisive Will to confront previously unconscious elements and give up the illusion of personal security, but it can be done.

Working with Air
Embrace the reality of spirit using a method of your choice: meditation, fervent prayer, breathing exercises, rituals, initiations, hypnogogic states (NDEs, OBEs, psychotropics). The soul can leave the body only be fusing with spirit. Meditate on images of separation – knives, scissors, axes, swords, splitting the red sea, release of steam, breaking apart of heaven and earth, a feather, the formation of an egg, breaking an egg (the egg is the Self), squaring the circle, complicated geometric diagrams. Meditate on the Kings in all four Tarot suits, then meditate on Justice (the Tarot card). The result of these exercises is that the Alchemist realized that’s/he is made up of basic components, the main ones being an indestructible soul (essence) and a higher spiritual component. (This dualism is a Greek invention, the Egyptians postulated at least 9 parts of the soul and its essences and spirits).

Breaking through Maya
Relax and concentrate on the breath while repeatedly asking the self “Who is aware?” Sit in a dark, silent room and repeat your name over and over, trying to determine what it really means, enter a mental loop until there is no difference between observer and observed, this is a big part of the True Self.

Second Attention
Look beyond the surface and pay attention to character, even state of health, concentrate on shadows (or auras) instead of objects, and focus on things that usually go unnoticed (body movements, expressions, things happening in the background, placements of objects around the person you are talking with). This takes practice, but one begins by entering a state of not-doing and halting the internal voices that support the First Attention (everyday, shallow, surface life). Since women already pay attention to expressions, backgrounds and placement of objects, if you are female, pay attention to the absolute direction you are facing (north, south, east, west, or in between), larger body gestures, the exact words someone is speaking (rather than the emotional overtones and expressions), what is happening behind you. (Most of these exercises were written by men, so you will just have to be creative. Concentrate on things you wouldn’t normally pay attention to).

Primordial Breath
Prana breathing from belly, chest and throat, all three levels of the lungs. Sit upright in a chair and relax. Using the diaphragm, take a deep breath, expanding the stomach, ribs, then upper chest into the throat. Then exhale completely – throat, ribs, belly. Inhale to count of 8, hold breath for a count of 24, exhale to count of 16. Practice until you can do this exercise at will for extended periods of time (1/2 and hour to an hour). Record visions and experiences.

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