“Gardner then recounts the difficulties of translators when they encountered an inscription from the Middle Kingdom’s deputy treasurer Si-Hathor, which stated 'I visited Bia as a child; I compelled the great ones to wash gold.' Noting that a question mark occurs after 'wash' Gardner observers that the translators were uncertain of the translation. However, in the light of what we will examine in the next section, perhaps a looser translation would have been appropriate. Washing, of course, 'makes clean' or 'purifies.' But what does 'purifying' an already pure and stable element like gold mean?”
--Joseph P. Farrell The Giza Death Star Destroyed: The Ancient War For Future Science
This piece is going to wade into some very deep waters. I'm going to explore the possibility of two layers or levels to alchemical practice—both in its technological and spiritual expressions. In a subsequent followup piece I’ll explore the work of Sri Aurobindo (and The Mother) as a spiritual expression of this second layer of alchemy—what I’ll call the supra-alchemical. This piece will set the context of the nature of alchemy, the two different levels (types) of alchemy, and how the spiritual component of alchemy is normally envisioned according to the first level/form of alchemy.
I’ve covered the topic of alchemy from a few different angles on this site. It’s a profoundly crucial topic and merits multiple passes. For example, there’s this piece that explores largely unconscious alchemical themes in transhumanist discourse. In addition, there’s this piece which explores the work of Giordano Bruno and how science was originally sourced in alchemical and hermetic philosophy, only later to be hijacked by scientism which itself is a kind of unconscious, shadow, or dark alchemy.
Alchemy is a very complex topic. It involves multiple interrelated but distinct dimensions of exploration and practice. For one thing alchemy is a material process of seeking to craft the Philosopher’s Stone—essentially a technological capacity to (co)create from the substrate of all reality. As we’ll see this is normally labeled as “turning lead to gold” but that turns out to not be the whole story. Alchemy is also a process of the transformation of human consciousness. It’s a spiritual art. The technological and the spiritual sides are two aspects of one integrated process.
Alchemy sprang up historically in multiple parts of the world. One stream of alchemy runs from Egypt through to the Greeks and later Romans (Byzantine and Western Catholic). This stream would also include the tradition of medieval Islamic alchemy (Persia, Turkey, Arabian peninsula, Islamic Spain, etc.). Another strain comes from India where it’s known as tantra. A third strain comes via China (Taoist and Chinese Alchemy). All those strains each have their technological and spiritual (psychophysical) expressions.*
When it comes to the spiritual versions of alchemy there are numerous examples. Carl Jung’s practice of shadow work, which involved connecting to aspects of one’s psyche that were often socially seen as “dark” or potentially evil and then counter-intuitively loving these aspects of oneself and bringing them back into union is one example. For Jung, whenever the shadow is properly embraced there is light hidden within it then then is liberated in the act of loving it. This act of loving the shadow and releasing the light hidden within it is a psycho-spiritual alchemical (transmutative) act.
Another example of an alchemical spirituality would be orthodox Christian theology itself (as I’ve detailed elsewhere on the site). In orthodox Christianity The Fall of Adam and Eve brought The Redeemer Christ whose death, resurrection, and Ascension have opened up a New Age (New Aeon) which eventually will culminate in a New Heaven and New Earth, which will somehow be greater then the original prelapsarian (pre-fall) state of paradise. Christ’s later act of redemption retrocausatively makes The Fall a “Happy Fault” (Felix Culpa) and a “Necessary Sin” in the words of the Easter Vigil Mass.
Very similar to the orthodox Christian narrative, there is Lurianic Kabbalah. In the vision of the great Kabbalist Rabbi Luria, God sought to pour the divine light into the space of creation through vessels. The Light however was too intense and too overwhelming—that is, it was cosmically traumatic—blasting the vessels which became shards. These shards (klipot) are left scattered throughout creation and while not evil can cause suffering. These shards nevertheless trapped droplets of the original Light (same as Jung would later argue for the shadow). The missoin of the Kabbalist is to free the light hidden within the klipot, thereby restoring the original Divine Creation. This act of retrieving the pieces of light is known as tikkun olam (cosmic restoration).
In Tantric practice, that which seems the pure opposite of enlightened awareness becomes precisely the context within which to deepen one’s spiritual awakening. In Tantra everything is ultimately a diverse and manifold expression of one undivided conscious light (discussed elsewhere on the site as nonduality). As such every arising phenomenon has a potentially enlightened or liberated quality. So in Tantra the realizer brings their lucid awareness to all sensation and experience and the power of that conscious realization brought to bear on any and all experience “lights up” that experience. Consciousness creates an alchemical crucible which will purify the experience into it’s liberated form. Hence there are forms of emotional alchemy, learning to embrace and transmute the most intense and difficult emotions like rage, panic, terror, disgust, grief into their liberated expressions, not by bypassing or transcending them but precisely by transmuting them.
Hegel’s Idealist philosophy—covered on the site in relationship to the UFO phenomenon—is yet another alchemical example. For Hegel—following in the line of orthodox Christianity as well as Lurianic Kabbalah—the original state was a pre-differentiated unity but it’s completeness and perfection became, in a strange way, a limitation. Hence there was a “fall” into division and duality leaving room for the eventual transformation into a post-dualist, post-unified state, a position weirdly greater than the original unity through and enentually overcoming division.
In shamanic and indigenous traditions there is the archetype of the Wounded Healer—though probably better termed the Transmuted Healer. Shamans often become initiated through horrifying and brutal experiences of being experimented upon and dis-membered by various entities (which may well be part of what is going on with the alien abduction phenomenon as explored elsewhere on the site). After which the shaman is re-membered, i.e. “put back together” into a state of cohesion and unity but somehow this is a more powerful form of unity having gone through the dismemberment. They are not who they were before the break. As explored elsewhere on the site, initiations can both individual or group in nature and that the initiation only works if the person ends up getting through to the fimal state of transformation. Otherwise if the initiation begins but is left incomplete the person (or group) ends up in the “worst of all possible worlds”—dismembered and broken but not put back together. Such a one is traumatized without being transmuted or transformed or transfigured.
All that to say the alchemical path is by no means an assured outcome. It is after all, “an experiment.” In all these examples we see the spiritual equivalent of “turning lead into gold.” Lead was considered by alchemist the most base metal and gold the highest. The lead of sin leads to the gold of redemption. The lead of the klipot leads to the release of the gold of the original Divine Light. The “lead” of a conventional state of rage or sexual desire becomes the “gold” of liberated Tantric conscious embodiment.
These examples of spiritual alchemy are meant to be representative—many more could be listed—but hopefully the key point has been established. These would be more forms of “white magic” or “The Right Hand Path” of spiritual alchemy. While it’s not the focus here, it’s important to name that there is a Left-Hand path, aka “black magic” or dark alchemy/sorcery. I’ve covered that topic in relationship to the figure of the Devil and how that image has been worshiped and enacted by global elites through technocracy. In regards to the dark alchemical/black magic path, the “technological” component also involves things like social engineering, psychological operations, and mind control. (See my piece on David Icke’s symbolism of reptilians for more on that dimension).
So far we’ve covered alchemy as having both technological and spiritual components and that those twin processes could be deployed to either benevolent or malevolent ends. Whatever the ethics and intention, however, the notion here is of transmuting base metal (literal or metaphoric) into the highest metal through alchemical purification.
This version of alchemy I’m going to call Level 1 Alchemy. It’s already esoteric in nature but strangely there is arguably an even more esoteric version of alchemy—both in it’s technological and psycho-spiritual application. Here is where we’re going to take a turn. Joseph Farrell will be our guide here to the possibility of an even deeper layer of esoteric alchemy (Level 2). The main texts of Farrell’s that are relevant to this discussion are Chapter Seven from The Giza Death Star Destroyed entitled Monatomic Paleophysics: Laurence Gardner and The Mass Displacement and his book The Philosopher’s Stone: Alchemy and the Secret Research for Exotic Matter.
In the chapter on Monatomic Paleophysics, Farrell details traditions concerning the Egyptian mfkzt (mufkuzt). The term mufkuzt was encounters by Egyptologists starting as far back as Champollion, the translator of the Rosetta Stone. The term lead to much confusion and challenge among translators. Some argued it meant a mineral or stone that was deemed highly valuable but also was somehow unstable.
The mystery deepened when it became known that the great Egyptologist Sir William Flinders Petrie had discovered a lost temple in the Sinai Peninsula, far removed in space from the Giza Plateau and other major Egyptian sacred sites. Within the find of this temple—which Petrie believed to the Biblical Mount Horeb—very mysteriously were a metallurgist’s crucible and a strange white powder. In other words at this forgotten Egyptian temple it appears alchemical processes were taking place.
Laurence Gardner, whose research Farrell is here drawing on, located a 17th century English alchemical text by the noted alchemist Eirenaeus Philalethes. For Farrell, Philalethes denies that the more commonplace understanding that alchemy was about turning lead into gold.
Rather Philalethes writes (both cited in Farrell’s book Giza Death Star Destroyed):**
“Our Stone is nothing but gold digested to the highest degree of purity and subtle fixation…Our gold, nor longer vulgar, is the ultimate goal of Nature.”
In a separate treatise (A Brief Guide to the Celestial Ruby) Philalethes further states:
“It is called a Stone by virtue of its fixed nature; it resists the action of fire as successfully as any stone. In species it is gold, more pure than the purest; it is fixed and incombustible like a stone, but its appearance is that of a very fine powder.”
Farrell (and Gardner) speculate on the possibility that Philalethes’ very fine powder was in fact mufkutz. In point of fact, both men point to the very strange episode in The Golden Calf story in The Book of Exodus where Moses has the Golden Calf consumed in fire, turned into a powder, and then:
Moses took the [golden] calf that they had made, burned it with fire, ground it to powder, scattered it on the water, and made the Israelites drink it. (my emphasis). Exodus 32: 20
Moses’ brother Aaron had melted down gold jewelry of the Israelites and then formed it into the golden calf. But Moses burns (other translations have it as “consumed”) the gold which is entirely other process requiring much higher heat. It’s also worth noting that the Philosopher’s Stone of the Alchemists is sometimes referred to as an elixir (as in “Moses made the Israelites drink it.”).
All of which points to Philalethes’ main argument—the core of alchemy was not turning lead into gold but rather purifying gold itself in the creation of The Philosopher’s Stone. It was taking an already pure form (gold) and then purifying further into a form that Philalethes called “more pure than the purest”.
It was this Philosopher’s Stone that was said to perform the transmutations that we tend to think off as the more classic forms of alchemy—turning lead into gold.
All this brings us back full circle to the quotation from Farrell with which I began this piece:
“Gardner then recounts the difficulties of translators when they encountered an inscription from the Middle Kingdom’s deputy treasurer Si-Hathor, which stated 'I visited Bia as a child; I compelled the great ones to wash gold.' Noting that a question mark occurs after 'wash' Gardner observers that the translators were uncertain of the translation. However, in the light of what we will examine in the next section, perhaps a looser translation would have been apposite. Washing, of course, 'makes clean' or 'purifies.' But what does 'purifying' an already pure and stable element like gold mean?”
What does purifying an already pure and stable like gold mean? Farrell’s interest in the topic as his later book on secret research into exotic states of matter makes clear lies in what I’m calling the technological side of the alchemical street (remembering though that the technological and spiritual were always interwoven with each other). Farrell explores the possibility of such alchemical Philosopher Stone confections in various cases from the 20th century (e.g. monatomic gold). My interest is more on the spiritual side of the alchemical street.
If we take Farrell’s powerful question—what does purifying an already pure substance mean?—in the spiritual sense that I believe something very intriguing potentially arises.
In other words, there is a more conventional (though still esoteric) understanding of alchemy as consisting of turning lead into gold in both of its two aspects: technological and spiritual. That spiritual form of alchemy, as I detailed, consists of various purification and spiritual transmutations.
But if Philalethes was correct that the truest art of alchemy (the deepest esoteric aim) was not turning lead into gold but rather taking already pure gold and then even further purifying it into the Philosopher’s Stone then that must apply to both the technological and spiritual elements. Farrell, as mentioned, explores in great depth the possibilities of the technological sides. But what about the spiritual side? What would this second or even deeper layer of alchemy look like in a spiritual sense? What does purifying an already pure and stable like gold spiritually mean?
As Philalethes stated:
“Our Stone is nothing but gold digested to the highest degree of purity and subtle fixation…Our gold, nor longer vulgar, is the ultimate goal of Nature.”
What would that mean spiritually? In other words, how would we start with an already pure spiritual consciousness (gold) and then purify further? How would that look? What spiritual alchemical process would be involved?
I entitled this piece the Supra-Alchemical. The term Supra is in reference to the subject of the following piece seeking to answer that question: the great 20th century spiritual philosopher Sri Aurobindo. Aurobindo spoke of the Supramental. Supra here meaning “above, higher than”. The Supra-Alchemical is this second form and intent of alchemy that Philalethes spoke of: gold digested to the highest degree of purity and subtle fixation.
I believe there is a spiritual counterpart to this deeper alchemy just as there was (and is) a spiritual dimension or application to the more conventional understanding of alchemy. I believe Aurobindo’s work offers us, one of, if not the, clearest examples of this spiritual supra-alchemy. In the companion piece I want to explore that topic.
* This commonality leads to an obvious question of whether one of these streams came first and the others were derived from it? Or whether all spring from an older common source?
** Farrell himself bases this aspect of his research on Laurence Gardner’s book Lost Secrets of the Sacred Ark.