The Alchemist- The Great Way of the Body Explored

Posted on July 23, 2011


“…each mind/body/spirit complex shall and should and, indeed, must perceive each archetype, if you use this convenient term, in its own way. Therefore, you may see that precision is not the goal; rather the quality of general concept complex perception is the goal.”- Ra, Session 77

The Alchemist


Arcanum 19

Way: how something is done or how it happens; the condition of things generally; a journey or passage; a course of conduct

Alchemist: one who was versed in the practice of alchemy and who sought an elixir of life and a panacea and an alkahest and the philosopher’s stone

Alchemy: originally derived from the Ancient Greek word khemia (Χημία) meaning “art of transmuting metals”, later arabicized as al-kimia , is both a philosophy and an ancient practice focused on the attempt to change base metals into gold. Deepak Chopra explains alchemy as the Art of Spiritual Transformation.

Athanor: a furnace that feeds itself so as to maintain a uniform temperature; used by alchemists


What is the Great Way of the Body?


“..the Great Way of the Body must be seen, as are all the archetypes of the body, to be a mirror image of the thrust of the activity of the mind. The body is the creature of the mind and is the instrument of manifestation for the fruits of mind and spirit. Therefore, you may see the body as providing the athanor through which the Alchemist manifests gold.”-Ra, Session 81


“I like to use the term alchemy, which is the soul of the world, or those of Jung’s collective unconscious.  You connect with a space where everything is.”-  Paulo Coelho

“Thanks to his complex convictions, made strong with the forces of animus and anima, the alchemist believes he is seizing the soul of the world, participating in the soul of the world. Thus, from the world to the man, alchemy is a problem of souls.”-Gaston Bachelard (1884 – 1962)

Alchemy and Transformation

By any measure, alchemy is magical. You can’t turn lead into gold by heating it, beating it, molding it into different shapes, or combining it with any known substance. Those are simply physical changes. Likewise, you will never cause an inner transformation by taking your old self and hammering it with criticism, heating it up with exciting experiences, reshaping how you look physically, or connecting with new people.

When you consciously align with the principles, you give yourself an opening for transformation.

Write down the nine principles as they personally apply to you and begin to live them. Carry them around with you; refer to them as reminders every few days. It’s better to focus with intention on one principle a day than trying to include too many at once.

1. The events of my life reflect who I am.

2. The people in my life reflect aspects of myself.

3. Whatever I pay attention to will grow.

4. Nothing is random–my life is full of signs and symbols.

5. At any given moment, the universe is giving me the best results possible.

6. My inner awareness is always evolving.

7. The direction of life is from duality to unity.

8. If I open myself to the force of evolution, it will carry me where I want to go.

9. The fragmented mind cannot get me to unity, but I have to use it along the way.[1]

– Deepak Chopra

[1] Adapted from The Book of Secrets by Deepak Chopra (Harmony Books, 2004).


My two sense

By this point in the study, we have explored the previous 6 concepts and the Great Way of the Mind (the Chariot). The one line we have from Ra about the Alchemist is this:

“…to be a mirror image of the thrust of the activity of the mind. The body is the creature of the mind and is the instrument of manifestation for the fruits of mind and spirit.” -From session 81

Our body is what we use to live on earth, a bio-vehicle and our temple. It is an invention that we all take for granted here on earth. This figure, the Alchemist seems to be the highest form of magical power we can know on earth because not only does he have the ability to create unlimited wealth from the vantage point of Earth, seeming unbound by the laws of physics and everything we have learned about the universe. A man with wings, and limitless power. I think of Neo at the end of the Matrix when he takes flight. The alchemist has reached a state of absolute knowing of his abilities, he can create using his will and heart, he lives life deliberately. He has everything he needs at his ready and is adept enough to use it.

It feels to me that this figure depicts a state of mind, or rather a direct reflection of the state of mind. This also reminds me of the proverbial fruits of the spirit and the notion of “know them by their fruit”. What we create for ourselves in life is indicative of our state of being. It is a reflection of how we see ourselves and others, how we value ourselves, care for ourselves and our overall vibrational being. I say “vibrational” because this encompasses our emotional and physical state as well. This is the body in this life, the one you are in, the one you carry day in and day out. This is but one facit of creation and it exists. It is real. What you put into your body, what comes out. They are all real things from this Earthly perspective. Go ahead and try to hop into another body this time around. You are stuck inside this fleshy body of bone and skin, hair and blood. You have to breathe air every few seconds; there are “rules” like what goes in must come out and you can only be you (unless you’re in a Disney movie, of course).

The alchemist is then both knowledgeable and capable. I take the symbolism of the left side of the body being clothed and covered by the left-wing to mean that the self is protected and cared for, and the naked part being how we presents himself to the world. Someone who is transparent or honest, open or he could just be into togas.