Emerald Tablet – Inscribed with Secrets of the Universe
The Emerald Tablet is considered to be a tablet of green stone or emerald which has been inscribed with the secrets of the universe. The foundation of the original Emerald Tablet is not known and so it has been encircled by legends.
One of the most common legend states that the tablet had been found in a caved tomb beneath the statue of Hermes in Tyana which was grasped in the hands of the body of Hermes Trismegistus, while another legend suggest that it was the third son of Adam and Eve, according to Seth who had originally written it. Still others are of the belief that the Emerald Tablet had once been held within the Ark of the Covenant and still others claim that the original source of the Emerald Tablet is the fabled city of Atlantis.
Though numerous assertions have been provided with regards to the origin of the Emerald Tablet, so far there is no confirmable evidence which has been supportive of them. The oldest documentable source of the text of the Emerald Tablet is the Kitab sirr al-haliqi, – Book of the Secret of Creation and the Art of Nature, which had been a composite of the earlier works.
`Balinas’ of Pseudo-Apollonius of Tyana
This had been an Arabic work which had been written in the 8th century A.D., attributing to a `Balinas’ of Pseudo-Apollonius of Tyana. It was Balinas who had provided us with the story of the Emerald Tablet that had been revealed in the caved tomb.
Established on this Arabic work, some are of the belief that the emerald Tablet had been an Arabic work that had been written between the 6th and 8th centuries AD instead of a piece of work from ancient times, according to several others.
Though Balinas state that originally, the Emerald Tablet had been written in Greek, the original document which he possessed does not exist anymore, possibly if it ever existed at all. However, the text became very popular and has been translated by many over the centuries.
For example the early version seemed to be in the work known as the Kitab Ustuqus al-Uss al-Thani – Second Book of the Elements of the Foundation, which is credited to Jabir ibn Hayyan. It would take many more centuries before the text could be accessible to the Europeans. The Emerald Tablet had been translated into Latin by Hugo von Santalla in the 12th century.
Significant Text in Medieval/Renaissance Alchemy
The Emerald Tablet was an extremely significant text in Medieval and Renaissance alchemy and is still till date. It could have become one of the pillars of Western alchemy. Besides translations of the Emerald Tablet, various interpretations have been written with regards to its contents.
A translation for instances, by Isaac Newton had been found among his alchemical papers which is presently held in King’s College Library in Cambridge University. Notable researchers of the Emerald Tablet comprise of Roger Bacon, John Dee, Albertus Magnus and Aleister Crowley. The reading of the Emerald Text is not a straightforward stuff since it a section of obscure text.
For instance, one version suggests that the text defines seven stages of alchemical transformation, namely calcination, dissolution, separation, conjunction, fermentation, distillation and coagulation. Nonetheless, in spite of the different clarifications that are available, it is said that none of their authors have claimed to possess knowledge to the complete truth. Moreover, the readers have been motivated to read the text and attempt to understand and discover the hidden truth by themselves.