ALCHEMY o Sect of Christianity o Purest form = Spiritual Path to Return Fallen Man to his State of Perfection in.
2 ALCHEMY ~ Sect of Christianity of Purest form = spiritual path to return fallen man to his state of perfection in the Garden of Eden o Man essentially spirit, then soul, then physical body ➡ fell from Grace, lost the interconnectedness of these elements ➡ became lead (the physical body). o The alchemical process ➡ purification through obedience and meditation
➡ achieves Philosopher’s Stone (immortality)
3 “To invent this wizard world, I’ve learned a ridiculous amount about alchemy. Perhaps much of it I’ll never use in the books, but I have to know in detail what magic can and cannot do in order to set the parameters and establish the stories’ internal logic.” | J.K. Rowling
4 The Philosopher’s Stone ➡ A legendary substance that supposedly could turn inexpensive metals such as lead into gold and/or create an elixir that would make humans younger, thus delaying death. Nicolas Flamel: a French alchemist who lived in the 14th century. He is alleged to have been the most accomplished of the European alchemists, and it is claimed that he succeeded at the two magical goals of alchemy — that he made the Philosopher’s Stone which turns lead into gold, and that he and his wife Perenelle achieved immortality.
5 THE ALCHEMIST ➡ Hermione finds out about Nicholas Flamel Hermione finds out about Nicholas Flamel “Dumbledore is particularly famous for…his work on alchemy with his partner Nicolas Flamel.” –from Dumbledore’s Chocolate Frogs card
6 SEPARATIO ➡ Separatio ➡ Separatio is the alchemical process that involves, as its name suggests, the separation of elements. Sometimes this is represented in a gentle way, like sorting and organization. Sometimes it’s violent, like cutting. becoming aware of the opposites that exist within oneself In alchemy, it has to do with becoming aware of the opposites that exist within oneself.
7 The alchemist uses catalysts and purifying agents to affect changes in the materials—and in himself. These materials break down and reinvent or rejuvenate a base material (“lead”) into a pure one (“gold”). Vitriol —often referred to as “the green lion”—is associated with the color green. It is the first material applied to crude matter, and it begins the process of breaking down and purifying this matter. The Alchemical Process
8 Next, 2 catalysts applied to the broken down base substance, and these reflect the masculine and feminine polarities of existence: o Alchemical sulfur: the masculine, impulsive, red pole o Alchemical mercury (or “quicksilver”): the feminine, rational, cool complement o Sulfur and quicksilver are often called “the quarreling couple” The Alchemical Process
9 3 STAGES NIGREDO ALBEDO RUBEDO 3 STAGES: 1) THE NIGREDO (OR BLACK) STAGE – the stage of dissolution, of breaking down, of burning away, of destroying in order to rebuild or to make reborn. 2) THE ALBEDO (OR WHITE) STAGE – that of purification, which follows a washing of the material, which causes it to turn a brilliant white. Frequent symbols of this stage are the moon (Luna) and the lily. 3) THE RUBEDO (OR RED) STAGE – that of recongealing or perfection, when the purified matter is ready to be reunited with the soul/spirit. At this point, one attains eternal life. The Alchemical Process
10 CONJUNCTION ➡ The joining of two opposite components, often seen as the union of the male and female, the subtle and gross, or even the elements.
11 Alchemical Symbols Phoenix: Phoenix: “renewal and resurrection signifying the philosopher’s stone, especially the red stone attained at rubedo, capable of transmuting base metals into pure gold”; destruction and recreation/rebirth Lily Lily: purity, immortality, salvation; the lily opens the path to God. James James: the patron saint of alchemists, the Fisher King, who heals the world/reclaims the Wasteland; he embodies the search for God. The Doppelgaenger The Doppelgaenger: a creature’s complementary figure, or shadow, that reveals otherwise unknown aspects of the being. (Examples would be creatures who can change form, who incorporate 2 “natures,” twins, etc.)
12 ANIMALS DOGS ANIMALS: Often used to symbolize the basic components and processes of alchemy. They may be used to symbolize the four Elements such as the lion or ox (Earth), fish or whales (Water), eagles (Air), or salamanders or dragons (Fire). Aerial animals generally indicate volatile principles, while terrestrial animals indicate fixed principles. Whenever two animals are found together, they signify Sulfur and Mercury or some relationship between the fixed and the volatile. DOGS: Signify primitive matter, natural sulfur, or material gold. A dog being devoured by a wolf symbolizes the process of purifying gold using antimony (a metal symbolizing animal nature)..
13 Caduceus This Stone is represented as a golden ball with wings at the top of the caduceus. Caduceus: the magical staff of Hermes, the Messenger of the Gods and revealer of alchemy. The staff is entwined by two serpents representing the solar and lunar forces. Their union is the Conjunction of alchemical principles and their offspring, if it lives, is the Stone. This Stone is represented as a golden ball with wings at the top of the caduceus.
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