Alchemy and Hermeticism as the Basis of Progressive Civilisation


Alchemy and Hermeticism, in its purest and most logical form, is the nearest Western teaching to that of Chinese transformative Daoism, particularly Alchemy and Hermeticism has many general and specific similarities to the ‘neidan’ teachings found within the Daoist Philosophical School (Daojia). It represents the material and immaterial development of the human-being, and the perfection of consciousness, body and environment. The material and immaterial realms are not different but represent two frequencies of exactly the same energy expression. Indeed, Sir Isaac Newton – the British genius who single-handedly invented modern science – was a very spiritual person, and an argument can be made that his knowledge of Alchemy and Hermeticism led directly to his ability to isolate, observe and measure material reality. Underlying this reality for Newton was a profound spirituality which university-led mainstream science has played-down, and expunged from the observable record. The policy of which was designed to permanently ‘separate’ religion (immateriality), from scientific processes (materiality). Chinese science does not do this, and neither does Alchemy and Hermeticism. Chinese science, of course, even in its most modern and progressive manifestation in the material realm, never loses sight of the ‘immaterial’ basis of human perception. Immateriality represents that world which cannot be perceived with the human senses unaided by technological innovation. In other words, the human senses (and the mind) may not be able to directly perceive everything that exists, but can, through the right kind of psychological and physical training, gain an intuitive understanding of these realities – which with regards to material science – can be confirmed as existing beyond the senses through the use of modern technology (such as the telescope and the microscope). Furthermore, the immaterial mind can envision realities beyond the senses through the use of mathematics and algebra. Even the most hardened materialist scientist has to admit that technology and mathematics has revealed realities beyond the ordinary sensory realm. It is an irony to consider that Newton spent much more of his life studying Alchemy and Hermeticism, than he did material science.

Within the Chinese language, Alchemy and Hermeticism is written as ‘炼金术’ (Lian Jin Shu), or ‘Refining Gold Technique’. Chinese language sources report that alchemy and Hermeticism has existed in many different countries throughout time, including ancient Egypt, ancient India, ancient Greece, Rome, South America, North America, China, Japan, Korea, Persia and the later Islamic civilisation. It is thought that teachings from ancient Egypt are observable in the philosophical works of the Greek philosopher Democritus in the 1st century CE, and that this demonstrates a transmission of the teachings of Alchemy and Hermeticism from ancient (Black) Egypt into the Western minds of the Greeks. This process eventually led to the work of Sir Isaac Newton and the founding of modern science. There is also a school of thought which suggests that perhaps ‘logical thinking’ arrived in ancient Greece from Egypt, and facilitated an outpouring of rational thought the like of which is considered unique in the world. Just as Newton separated Alchemy from material science, some ancient Greeks also separated logic and reason from Alchemy, effectively creating a new tradition of thought and use of the mind. If this is correct, then the entire edifice of Western civilisation rests upon the teachings of Alchemy and Hermeticism. This may even be true for the theology of Judeo-Christianity, which represents a splitting away from an all-embracing original teaching.

There is an ongoing debate as to whether ancient Africa had direct contact with ancient China, with Chinese scholars being very much in favour of this idea. Which way the culture and information flowed is also a matter of great debate. Did China’s ancient developmental culture influence the development of African understanding, or did advanced African thinking influence China’s development? No one is sure, but it is obvious that ancient Africa possessed a rich tapestry of progressive and advanced understandings. Of course, there could well have been an ‘equal’ transmission and appreciation. There are some Chinese scholars who believe that Black African travelers visited and settled in China thousands of years ago, and that their DNA (and culture) is now part of the ‘Chinese’ genotype. Perhaps this is also true of ancient ‘Han’ Chinese people traveling to Africa and settling on that great continent, before integrating with the indigenous population. Whatever the historical case may be, another name for Chinese Alchemy is ‘黄白术’ (Huang Bai Shu), or ‘Yellow White Technique’. This refers to a technical language that talks of ‘smelting’ gold and silver, but this is not to be taken literally, but rather as a ‘coded’ instruction that only a truly initiated master already knows and can explain. Smelting gold and silver refers to specific psychological and physical processes that are transformed through the great heat associated with an intense meditative process. Chinese Alchemy is also referred to as ‘炼丹家’ (Lian Dan Jia), or ‘Cultivation Energy Field Family’. This refers to the three ‘energy centres’ or ‘dan’ that exist in the mind and body, and their opening and transformation through seated meditative practice, and various methods of ‘moving’ meditation (such as through the techniques of profound martial arts practice).

Chinese Language References:黄白术炼金术

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