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The Elements and Spirit as an Emergent Quality

This is one of the most misunderstood and controversial subjects in magick. Outsiders are prone to thinking magi foolish for clinging to a belief in four elements when there’s this thing called the “periodic table” that lists well over a hundred. Insiders are prone to trying to make the Classical Elements “fit” modern science by equating them with the states of matter.

The first is a simple matter of equivocation. The Elements in Occultism are a totally different subject than the elements on the periodic table. It is not just a matter of the same word referring to two slightly similar things. It’s a matter of two totally different categories using the same name. The Elements are not merely material building blocks or types of atoms. Nor are they states of matter, as some modern occultists would maintain.

The Four Classical Elements are actually the product of another muddled aspect of occultism: polarity, or “gender.” The traditional Aristotilian classification of Elements into variations of hot/dry and cold/wet has behind it the doctrine of polarity. In terms perhaps foreign but also more familiar, this is the interplay of Yin and Yang. Passive and Active. Positive and Negative. You get the idea.

Read the original article at: Strange Onion Peelings

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