Alchemy and Enlightenment

The Alchemy Website was created by Adam McLean, a well known authority on and enthusiast for alchemical texts and symbolism, the editor and publisher of over 40 books on alchemical and Hermetic ideas. One of the many, many fascinating articles on the Alchemy Website is The Alchemical Process of Transformation, written by Nigel Hamilton in 1985. Here is an excerpt:

“Now apart from a few of the most enlightened alchemists, most practitioners in medieval times believed that they could literally transform lead into gold. The literature shows that the frustrated would-be goldmakers became entangled in a subterranean labyrinth of fantasies, hallucinations, visions, and dreams. Thus, what appeared to be the greatest mistake of the majority of “alchemical hopefuls” turned out to condition their greatest achievement: in the darkness of their blind alley the “sons of Hermes” had come to discover, through their activated imaginations, the unconscious.”

“Carl Jung discovered that many of the dreams and states of consciousness that his clients reported corresponded remarkably to the descriptions recorded in the alchemical texts. Jung subsequently felt that the knowledge of Alchemy could be used in understanding the process of psychological and spiritual transformation as a tool for use in psychotherapy.”

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