Spiritual Alchemy

Alchemy is an ancient mystical process of transmuting common substance, usually of little value, into a substance of great value.

In common language we refer to someone as an Alchemist if they are able to transform their lives or aspects of their lives from gutter to glory.

The practice of Alchemy was predominant in China, India, Europe, and parts of the Muslim world. Contemporary thoughts and discussions on alchemy are usually split into analysis of its exoteric practical applications and esoteric spiritual aspects.For the sake of this article we will focus on the esoteric spiritual aspects, specifically spiritual alchemy.

Basically, spiritual alchemy refers to spiritual refinement with the goal of transforming from gross material desires to training focus on the more subtle spiritual realm. The ultimate goal is to attain peace, contentment, self actualization, and spiritual re-birth.

The process of spiritual alchemy is broken down into seven progressive stages as follows:

1. Calcination
Calcination refers to the burning down of our worldly desires into ashes. In a spiritual context, it refers to detachment from our material desires like wealth, status, and the egotistical need to seek validation of our identities from others. This should not be misconstrued to mean that seeking some of these things is bad, only that there are moments where they can be an impediment in the process of developing a higher level of consciousness.

Calcination also refers to the burning off of all the superfluous aspects of ourselves that no longer serve us. This could be our preconceived notions about identity and beliefs.

When fire purifies us, the hardened and dead part of ourselves are burned away which as a consequence leads to the awakening of the spirit.

This stage is also known as The Dark Night of The Soul where our former worldview is dismantled and we experience some sort of existential crisis.

2. Dissolution
This stage involves dissolving the ashes from Calcination stage in water.

Water in this context signifies the hidden parts of ourselves that we are afraid to face and explore. It is during this stage of the process that we free ourselves from inauthentic and acquired sense of identity.

Since the predominant symbol in this stage is water it is also associated with intense emotions as the water in this case signifies a reservoir of emotions suppressed within.

In this stage of the process, repressed emotions from past traumatic events that have been pushed down the psyche are freely expressed. It gives us a platform to free ourselves from past painful experiences.

3. Separation
In this stage of the process, there is separation of an individual’s pure essence from all the mix-up they have acquired through out their life. In a spiritual or psychological context it can be understood as separation from one’s habitual thought patterns or emotional trigger responses.

Going through this stage of the process offers us an opportunity to liberate ourselves from self resentment and resentment towards others, a liberation from negative emotions, thoughts, and thoughts patterns; in so doing we take a step closer our higher selves.

The separation process happens when we no longer identify with the role we have been playing and instead we transform into the awareness itself ; awareness of our own thoughts, feelings, and desires but without actually identifying with them or becoming attached to them.

After experiences of emptiness and suffering during calcination in the first stage, and feelings of fear accompanying waves of intense emotions in the dissolution stage of the process; the separation stage comes as a welcome relief as an individual experiences the stillness that comes with being separated from low vibration experiences.

4. Conjunction
Conjunction refers to the process of combining all elements from the previous three stages.

After purification by fire, water, and air, polarised elements are brought together under the earth element. A process of embodiment begins.

Somebody going through this process could experience feelings of a unified body and soul in its initial stages.

Disparate elements cease their conflicts and come together; harmony is achieved between the different elements, like for example; body and soul, male and female, spirit and matter, and so on.

5. Putrefaction/ Fermentation
This stage of the process is what can be referred to as the rebirth. The previous four stages involved discarding the old inauthentic self and drawing together the inauthentic elements within us.

In this stage of the process an individual could experience a more refined authentic self which could metaphorically be likened to the proverbial phoenix rising from the ashes.

This stage is intense because it is here that we are forced to let our old selves and any part of us that identify with it to go. It is difficult because most of us are scared of letting our identities go even though they no longer serve us. Probably this is because it is the only part of us that we identify with and letting it go could trigger strong feelings of depression from loss related to the grief.

The upside of this stage however, is that we get to see the world in a new luminescent way, and as a result we can experience feelings of bliss, inner peace, and contentment.

6. Distillation
Compare this stage with the distillation process in chemistry where a liquid is boiled until it evaporates and as steam condenses, the essence is liberated from matter. Through this analogy , we are simply implying the liberation of our essence from matter.

In other words, in spiritual alchemy, distillation is a metaphor for the actualisation of one’s spirit. At this stage, the ego is no longer in control and we tend to listen to the soul more.

7. Coagulation
This is the final stage of the process. Coagulation in literal sense refers to the process through which a liquid, typically blood solidifies; it usually occurs when we are cut in order to form a scab.

In spiritual alchemy, coagulation involves integration of our true self and in a literal sense can be compared to a healing wound.

This stage of the process is about integration of disparities; spirit and matter, body and soul, masculine and feminine, to form a complete whole. It is in this stage that the higher self emerges.

PS: Are you a spiritual seeker, for how long have you been on this path , in the seven stages highlighted above, which one do you identify with at the moment. Share your thoughts with us at: admin@777infinite-soul.com

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