The light of gold shining down
Other Elemental Connections:
Most Used Extra Power:
Alchomancy - Divination by golden glow
Golden Light - Emission of a golden glow light beam
Silver Light - to turn objects into iron or silver
Alchemy, was introduced originally in the land of Kemet (KMT) which is located in the northeastern regions of Africa. It is said that this knowledge was given to these people from the entity Melek Taus who understood how to manipulate the metals and elements of the Earth. This knowledge is both a philosophy and an ancient practice focused on first understanding the connections with the principle infinity or "full circle" in which what is done has an equivalent reaction, and that what we see is just a portion of the extent to how we limit our view.
Many only understand minor basics of alchemy in things that just cover the the attempt to change base metals into gold, investigating the preparation of the "elixir of longevity", and achieving ultimate wisdom, involving the improvement of the alchemist as well as the making of several substances described as possessing unusual properties. Alchemy is deeper then that. The true principles are given in what we call symbols. (which later we changed into alphabets in languages). With the symbols they have meanings of elements, teachers of the elements, numerical worth, and order in which they are used. The practical aspect of alchemy generated the basics of modern inorganic chemistry, namely concerning procedures, equipment and the identification and use of many current substances.
Alchemy has been practiced in ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia (modern Iraq), India, Persia (modern Iran), China, Japan, Korea, the classical Greco-Roman world, the medieval Islamic world, and then medieval Europe up to the 20th century, in a complex network of schools and philosophical systems spanning at least 2,500 years.
Main article: Chemistry (etymology)The word alchemy derives from the Old French alquimie, which is from the Medieval Latin alchimia, and which is in turn from the Arabic al-kimia (الكيمياء). This term itself is derived from the Ancient Greek chemeia (χημεία) with the addition of the Arabic definite article al- (الـ). It used to be thought that the ancient Greek word was originally derived in its turn from "Chemia" (Χημία), a version of the Egyptian name for Egypt, which was itself based on the Ancient Egyptian word kēme (hieroglyphic Khmi, black earth, as opposed to desert sand). Some now think that the word originally derived from chumeia (χυμεία) meaning "mixture" and referring to pharmaceutical chemistry. With the later rise of alchemy in Alexandria, the word may have been mistakenly thought by ancient writers to derive from Χημία, and thus became spelt as χημεία, and the original meaning forgotten. The question of the etymology of the word alchemy is still open, and recent research indicates that the Egyptian derivation of the word may be valid. 
"Renel the Alchemist", by Sir William Douglas, 1853Page from alchemic treatise of Ramon Llull, 16th centuryAlchemy became known as the spagyric art after Greek words meaning to separate and to join together in the 16th century, the word probably being coined by Paracelsus. Compare this with one of the dictums of Alchemy in Latin: Solve et Coagula — Separate, and Join Together (or "dissolve and coagulate").
The best-known goals of the alchemists were the transmutation of common metals into gold (called chrysopoeia) or silver (less well known is plant alchemy, or "spagyric"); the creation of a "panacea", or the elixir of life, a remedy that, it was supposed, would cure all diseases and prolong life indefinitely; and the discovery of a universal solvent. Although these were not the only uses for the discipline, they were the ones most documented and well-known. Certain Hermetic schools argue that the transmutation of lead into gold is analogical for the transmutation of the physical body (Saturn or lead) into (Gold) with the goal of attaining immortality. This is described as Internal Alchemy. Starting with the Middle Ages, Persian and European alchemists invested much effort in the search for the "philosopher's stone", a legendary substance that was believed to be an essential ingredient for either or both of those goals. Pope John XXII issued a bull against alchemical counterfeiting, and the Cistercians banned the practice amongst their members. In 1403, Henry IV of England banned the practice of Alchemy. In the late 14th century, Piers the Ploughman and Chaucer both painted unflattering pictures of Alchemists as thieves and liars. By contrast, Rudolf II, Holy Roman Emperor, in the late 16th century, sponsored various alchemists in their work at his court in Prague.
It is a popular belief that Alchemists made contributions to the "chemical" industries of the day—ore testing and refining, metalworking, production of gunpowder, ink, dyes, paints, cosmetics, leather tanning, ceramics, glass manufacture, preparation of extracts, liquors, and so on (it seems that the preparation of aqua vitae, the "water of life", was a fairly popular "experiment" among European alchemists). Alchemists contributed distillation to Western Europe. The double origin of Alchemy in Greek philosophy as well as in Egyptian and Mesopotamian technology set, from the start, a double approach: the technological, operative one, which Marie-Louise von Franz call extravert, and the mystic, contemplative, psychological one, which von Franz names as introvert. These are not mutually exclusive, but complementary instead, as meditation requires practice in the real world, and conversely.
Several early alchemists, such as Zosimos of Panopolis, are recorded as viewing alchemy as a spiritual discipline, and, in the Middle Ages, metaphysical aspects, substances, physical states, and molecular material processes as mere metaphors for spiritual entities, spiritual states, and, ultimately, transformations. In this sense, the literal meanings of 'Alchemical Formulas' were a blind, hiding their true spiritual philosophy, which being at odds with the Medieval Christian Church was a necessity that could have otherwise led them to the "stake and rack" of the Inquisition under charges of heresy. Thus, both the transmutation of common metals into gold and the universal panacea symbolized evolution from an imperfect, diseased, corruptible, and ephemeral state towards a perfect, healthy, incorruptible, and everlasting state; and the philosopher's stone then represented a mystic key that would make this evolution possible. Applied to the alchemist himself, the twin goal symbolized his evolution from ignorance to enlightenment, and the stone represented a hidden spiritual truth or power that would lead to that goal. In texts that are written according to this view, the cryptic alchemical symbols, diagrams, and textual imagery of late alchemical works typically contain multiple layers of meanings, allegories, and references to other equally cryptic works; and must be laboriously "decoded" in order to discover their true meaning.
In his Alchemical Catechism, Paracelsus clearly denotes that his usage of the metals was a symbol: Q. When the Philosophers speak of gold and silver, from which they extract their matter, are we to suppose that they refer to the vulgar gold and silver? A. By no means; vulgar silver and gold are dead, while those of the Philosophers are full of life.
Alchemical symbolism has been occasionally used by psychologists and philosophers. Carl Jung reexamined alchemical symbolism and theory and began to show the inner meaning of alchemical work as a spiritual path. Alchemical philosophy, symbols and methods have enjoyed something of a renaissance in post-modern contexts.
Jung saw alchemy as a Western proto-psychology dedicated to the achievement of individuation. In his interpretation, alchemy was the vessel by which Gnosticism survived its various purges into the Renaissance, a concept also followed by others such as Stephan A. Hoeller. In this sense, Jung viewed alchemy as comparable to a Yoga of the East, and more adequate to the Western mind than Eastern religions and philosophies. The practice of Alchemy seemed to change the mind and spirit of the Alchemist. Conversely, spontaneous changes on the mind of Western people undergoing any important stage in individuation seems to produce, on occasion, imagery known to Alchemy and relevant to the person's situation.
His interpretation of Chinese alchemical texts in terms of his analytical psychology also served the function of comparing Eastern and Western alchemical imagery and core concepts and hence its possible inner sources (archetypes).
Marie-Louise von Franz, a disciple of Jung, continued Jung's studies on Alchemy and its psychological meaning.
- nigredo (-putrefactio), blackening (-putrefaction): corruption, dissolution, individuation, see also Suns in alchemy - Sol Niger
- albedo, whitening: purification, burnout of impurity; the moon, female
- citrinitas, yellowing: spiritualization, enlightenment; the sun, male;
- rubedo, reddening: unification of man with God, unification of the limited with the unlimited.
However, it is in citrinitas that the Chemical Wedding takes place, generating the Philosophical Mercury without which the Philosopher's Stone, triumph of the Work, could never be accomplished.
Within the Magnum Opus was the creation of the Sanctae Moleculae, that is the 'Sacred Masses' that were derived from the Sacrae Particulae, that is the 'Sacred Particles', needed to complete the process of achieving the Magnum Opus.
The history of alchemy has become a vigorous academic field. As the obscure hermetic language of the alchemists is gradually being "deciphered", historians are becoming more aware of the intellectual connections between that discipline and other facets of Western cultural history, such as the sociology and psychology of the intellectual communities, kabbalism, spiritualism, Rosicrucianism, and other mystic movements, cryptography, witchcraft, and the evolution of science and philosophy.
Main article: History of alchemySee also: ChrysopoeiaAlchemy is the science of understanding, deconstructing, and reconstructing matter, although it is often seen only as the pursuit of turning common metals into gold. A scientific theory says that if Alchemy is stopped in the process of deconstructing, the object will be destroyed. According to Marie-Louise von Franz, the initial basis for alchemy were Egyptian metal technology and mummification, Mesopotamian technology and astrology, and Pre-Socratic Greek philosophers such as Empedocles, Thales of Miletus and Heraclitus.
The origins of Western alchemy are traceable back to ancient Egypt. The Leyden papyrus X and the Stockholm papyrus along with the Greek magical papyri comprise the first "book" on alchemy still existent. Babylonian, Greek, Indian, Chinese, and other philosophers theorized that the complexity of nature can be explained with a small set of elements, such as those of Empedocles: Earth, Fire, Water, and Air. They have little conceptional similarity to today's 117 chemical elements. In the Middle Ages, Jābir ibn Hayyān's theories and list of seven elements, including sulfur and mercury, were augmented and slowly displaced by more modern criteria for elements and theories of chemistry during the early modern period.
Alchemy encompasses several philosophical traditions spanning four millennia and three continents. These traditions' general penchant for cryptic and symbolic language makes it hard to trace their mutual influences and "genetic" relationships. Alchemy starts becoming much clearer in the 8th century with the works of the Islamic alchemist, Jābir ibn Hayyān (known as "Geber" in Europe), who introduced a methodical and experimental approach to scientific research based in the laboratory, in contrast to the ancient Greek and Egyptian alchemists whose works were mainly allegorical.
Other famous alchemists include Rhazes, Avicenna and Imad ul-din in Persia; Wei Boyang in Chinese alchemy; and Nagarjuna in Indian alchemy; and Albertus Magnus and Pseudo-Geber in European alchemy; as well as the anonymous author of the Mutus Liber, published in France in the late 17th century, which was a 'wordless book' that claimed to be a guide to making the philosopher's stone, using a series of 15 symbols and illustrations. The philosopher's stone was an object that was thought to be able to amplify one's power in alchemy and, if possible, grant the user ageless immortality, unless he fell victim to burnings or drowning; the common belief was that fire and water were the two greater elements that were implemented into the creation of the stone.
In the case of the Chinese and European alchemists, there was a difference between the two. The European alchemists tried to transmute lead into gold, and, no matter how futile or toxic the element, would continue trying until it was royally outlawed later into the century. The Chinese, however, paid no heed to the philosopher's stone or transmutation of lead to gold; they focused more on medicine for the greater good. During Enlightenment, these "elixirs" were a strong cure for sicknesses, unless it was a test medicine. In general, most tests were fatal, but stabilized elixirs served great purposes. On the other hand, the Islamic alchemists were interested in alchemy for a variety of reasons, whether it was for the transmutation of metals or artificial creation of life, or for practical uses such as medicine.
During the 17th century, practical Alchemy started to evolve into "Chemistry", as it was renamed by Robert Boyle, the "father of modern Chemistry". In his book, The Skeptical Chymist, Boyle attacked Paracelsus and the venerable natural philosophy of Aristotle, which was taught at universities. However, Boyle's biographers, in their emphasis that he laid the foundations of modern chemistry, neglect how steadily he clung to the Scholastic sciences and to Alchemy, in theory, practice and doctrine. Extract and symbol key from a 17th-century book on alchemy. The symbols used have a one-to-one correspondence with symbols used in astrology at the time.A tentative outline is as follows:
- Egyptian alchemy [5000 BC – 400 BC], beginning of alchemy
- Indian alchemy [1200 BC – Present], related to Indian metallurgy; Nagarjuna was an important alchemist
- Greek alchemy [332 BC – 642 AD], studied at the Library of Alexandria Stockholm papyrus
- Chinese alchemy [142 AD], Wei Boyang writes The Kinship of the Three
- Islamic alchemy [700 – 1400], Jābir ibn Hayyān develops experimental method for alchemy during the Islamic Golden Age
- Islamic chemistry [800 – Present], Alkindus and Avicenna refute transmutation, Rhazes refutes four classical elements
- European alchemy [1300 – Present], Saint Albertus Magnus builds on Islamic alchemy
- European chemistry [1661 – Present], Boyle writes The Sceptical Chymist, Lavoisier writes Traité Élémentaire de Chimie (Elements of Chemistry), and Dalton publishes his Atomic Theory
Persian alchemy was a forerunner of modern scientific chemistry. Alchemists used many of the same laboratory tools that are used today. These tools were not usually sturdy or in good condition, especially during the medieval period of Europe. Many transmutation attempts failed when alchemists unwittingly made unstable chemicals. This was made worse by the unsafe conditions in which the alchemists worked.
Up to the 16th century, alchemy was considered serious science in Europe; for instance, Isaac Newton devoted considerably more of his writing to the study of alchemy (see Isaac Newton's occult studies) than he did to either optics or physics, for which he is famous. Other eminent alchemists of the Western world are Roger Bacon, Saint Thomas Aquinas, Tycho Brahe, Thomas Browne, and Parmigianino. The decline of alchemy began in the 18th century with the birth of modern chemistry, which provided a more precise and reliable framework for matter transmutations and medicine, within a new grand design of the universe based on rational materialism.
Traditional medicines involve transmutation by alchemy, using pharmacological or a combination of pharmacological and spiritual techniques. In Chinese medicine the alchemical traditions of pao zhi will transform the nature of the temperature, taste, body part accessed or toxicity. In Ayurveda the samskaras are used to transform heavy metals and toxic herbs in a way that removes their toxicity. These processes are actively used to the present day.
Main articles: Nuclear transmutation and Synthesis of noble metalsIn 1919, Ernest Rutherford used artificial disintegration to convert nitrogen into oxygen. From then on, this sort of scientific transmutation has been routinely performed in many nuclear physics-related laboratories and facilities, like particle accelerators, nuclear power stations and nuclear weapons as a by-product of fission and other physical processes.
Sir Thomas Malory uses Alchemy as a motif that underlies the personal, psychological, and aesthetic development of Sir Gareth of Orkney in Le Morte d'Arthur. Sir Gareth's quest parallels the process of Alchemy in that he first undergoes the nigredo phase by defeating the black knight and wearing his armor. After this, Gareth defeats knights representing the four elements, thereby subsuming their power. In fighting and defeating the Red Knight (the overall purpose of his quest) he undergoes and passes the rubedo phase. Gareth, toward the end of his quest, accepts a ring from his paramour, Lyoness, which transforms his armor into being multicolored. This alludes to the panchromatic philosopher's stone, and while he is in multicolored armor, he is unbeatable.
According to Hermetic Fictions: Alchemy and Irony in the Novel (Keele University Press, 1995), by David Meakin, alchemy is also featured in such novels and poems as those by William Godwin, Percy Bysshe Shelley, Emile Zola, Jules Verne, Marcel Proust, Thomas Mann, Hermann Hesse, James Joyce, Gustav Meyrink, Lindsay Clarke, Marguerite Yourcenar, Umberto Eco, Michel Butor, Paulo Coelho, Amanda Quick, Gabriel García Marquez and Maria Szepes.
Hilary Mantel, in her novel Fludd (1989, Penguin), mentions the spagyric art. 'After separation, drying out, moistening, dissolving, coagulating, fermenting, comes purification, recombination: the creation of substances the world until now has never beheld. This is the opus contra naturem, this is the spagyric art, this is the Alchymical Wedding'. (page 79)
In Dante's Inferno, it is placed within the Tenth ring of the 8th circle.
In Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, there are several references to Nicholas Flamel, and a stone that could turn metal into gold and create an elixir of immortality was sought after by both the villains and Harry and friends, for different reasons.
The manga and anime series Fullmetal Alchemist bases itself on a more fantasised version of alchemy, based on the principle of equivalent exchange. In the manga and anime series Buso Renkin, alchemy is used to form Kakugane, which transforms into a weapon based on a human's fighting instincts. Also, alchemy is used to create homunculi.
In the twentieth century alchemy was a profoundly important source of inspiration for the Surrealist artist Max Ernst, who used the symbolism of alchemy to inform and guide his work. M.E. Warlick wrote his Max Ernst and Alchemy describing this relationship in detail.
Contemporary artists use alchemy as inspiring subject matter, like Odd Nerdrum, whose interest has been noted by Richard Vine, and the painter Michael Pearce, whose interest in alchemy dominates his work. His works Fama and The Aviator's Dream particularly express alchemical ideas in a painted allegory.