Transpersonal Alchemy 101: A Guide to Personal Transformation

Updated: Apr 26

In this article, I would like to outline the process for complete personal transformation of one's character, deeds, and ways of life. This is what I call 'Transpersonal Alchemy.' I have used this myself for nearly a decade and have been able to heal & process all sorts of childhood traumas and more recent traumas through this process. I have also taught numerous classes, workshops, and intensives using this same formula to teach others how to perform transformation themselves.

Dennis William Hauck's book: The Emerald Tablet: Alchemy for Personal Transformation was the source that led to me teaching my own version of 'Transpersonal Alchemy' and it will be clear to those who are familiar with his work that though I have drawn inspiration from his data, my approach is not a repeat of his work at all. I have framed the lessons in an altogether different way that mirrors Spagyric labwork and I have even altered the names of the processes to be more congruent with Spagyria. Dennis himself drew the inspiration for his book from Gottlieb Latz, so it's not entirely unique to him, either. Though the overall theme remains pretty similar, this work is definitely my own take on things and this is why I have come to call it 'Transpersonal Alchemy'.

In Hauck’s book, he shows how the cornerstone of all Alchemical Literature, known as the Emerald Tablet, contains the secrets to transforming ALL ENERGY, whether we're talking about things in the laboratory, trauma from our past, or our even thought patterns. It is equally applicable to ecology, gardening, or even the creation of stars and planetary systems from an Astrophysical perspective. Though all these applications seem very vastly different at a first glance, they all abide by a holographic and fractal pattern that can be easily understood and applied to every circumstance. In that way, these Seven Steps of Transformation are Universal Archetypal Processes that govern ALL ENERGY. And by that same token, if people are to understand life/nature and how to best steward themselves and their environments, then the information in this article is crucial.

I like to put it like this, "Energy can neither be created nor destroyed; it is constantly changing form”. That means that all energy is in a perpetual state of transformation. Alchemy is the Art and Science of Transformation, and therefore deals with how all energy is ABLE TO change form. To put this in a tangible example: Repressed or Difficult Emotions are energy. We know that they exist energetically because they have a magnetic charge to them, and this much can be observed in the brain. So if you want to transform this difficult emotional energy, which is to say, to change a trauma into something more valuable, then Alchemy really needs to take center stage. This DOES NOT mean that you have to invest in laboratory supplies or study archaic texts or huddle over a chemistry set at any point in your life, but what it does infer is that if you truly want to be free of that emotional pain, you can transform the emotional pain by studying and applying the Universal Principles of Transformation in what I like to call "Your Inner Lab." The Inner Lab really consists of nothing more than the plane of thoughts and emotions and determination inside yourself, which you already use, and have used, daily since you were a child. You are already familiar with this "Lab Space", the only thing you must now learn is how to efficiently use that lab space to perform Transformation instead of allowing that same space to hold you back and limit your potential.

The first four Processes of this 7 step Transformational Journey are vital towards Changing Your Daily Thoughts and Emotions in order to drastically alter your personal relationship to yourself. These processes work with the Alchemical Archetype of "Salt," which is THE CORPUS of your Transpersonal Being. Purifying the Corpus of a substance is very critical because unless the BODY is purified, it is unable to be an adequate receptacle for the Energy of Dynamic SPIRIT and the unfettered SOUL. So these first four processes set the tone for you to be able to develop Disciplines that will enable you to Enact the Soul's Volition. This is critical because unless you are doing EXACTLY what your Soul is beckoning you to do, you will ALWAYS have a tendency towards depression (& mental dis-ease) and physiological illnesses because of the incongruence that exists between Body and Soul. That said, let's look at each of the processes:

1. Calcination - Works with the Archetype of Fire -

This first phase of the work is about finding your faults and using the Fire of Self-Scrutiny and Awareness to burn your ego's perception of "why you are the way you are" down to an Ash. This process begins very easily: You just need a red pen, a black pen, and a notebook. The color of the ink is very important and symbolic to which phase you're in, so be sure to follow the directions carefully for maximum effect. First part of calcination involves using your RED PEN and writing down the main problems you find with yourself. These can be faults that you acknowledge consciously or they can also be things about yourself or memories that you want to transform. Some ideas include: I am Overweight; I have lots of Health Problems; My Emotional Traumas are holding me back; I feel like am not Loved; I am a Burden to others; etc. Hopefully you get the jist. Spend some time deeply reflecting and write down ALL the things you would like to change about yourself on a page. Your statements should be very succinct and direct, because this phase of the work is like choosing which herb or material you're going to use. The name of the herb is very simple, and in that same way, the 'Transpersonal Material' you choose to work with should have a simple name, too.

Once you have all your materials written out and laid out on a page in front of you, choose ONE of them to work with. Just like I have built an apothecary with hundreds of herbs by performing the process on each one individually, you will be doing essentially the same thing using 'Transpersonal Materials' instead of herbs. But you will get overwhelmed and discouraged very quickly if you try to work on more than one project at a time until you become very proficient and fluent with the processes involved. This first material will be the hardest one to get through because there is a learning curve. So you only want to bite off what you can chew. Choose ONE 'Transpersonal Material' to work with from your list to start with. Then with the RED PEN again, on a new sheet of paper, I want you to write out the problem followed by the word "because...." For instance, I'll use the 'Transpersonal Material of "I feel like I am not Loved" as an example. Your sentence would look like: I feel like I am not loved because.... After the "because...", this is where you get to journal things out and write out all the experiences you may have had that cause you to feel that way. For example: I feel like I am not loved because my mother put more time and effort into having partners than showing me love. And then starting when I was a teen and going through adulthood, I've had a series of relationships where I was constantly being used, either for money or sex or both. Nobody every truly SAW me or LOVED me or MET me where I needed to be seen, loved, or met. And most recently, my birth parents don't want to have anything to do with me or my children…. And all of this leads me to believe that I am not loved. Don't hold any details back from yourself. This could take an hour, a few hours, or even a few days. The time-frame is not important, per se. What is important is that you're thorough in your journaling and that, to the best of your ability, you include EVERY instance that you can remember that aggrandizes your belief.

When you have a complete journal entry on this 'Transpersonal Material', then the next goal is to use your RED PEN again on a completely new sheet of paper in the journal to succinctly write down each of those instances that were brought up in your journal entry. My example above is already pretty succinct, so I will continue using those. You will want to write them out in chronological order from most recent memories or experiences to the oldest memories and experiences. Don't get too hung up on the chronological listing, but it helps if they are in chronological order as you'll see. So for instance,

1. My Birth Parents have told me that they don't want to have anything to do with me or my children.

2. My former partners have not treated me well and I feel used and unloved by these interactions.

3. When I was a kid, my parents were always focusing on themselves and didn't offer enough time or attention to make me feel loved.

When those experiences are written out clearly, then it is time for you to, one by one, ask yourself "Why" those things happened. Journal each topic listed on a separate page in RED PEN. For instance, My Birth Parents don't want to have anything to do with my children and I because.... This may be a simple reason, but it's usually complex involving numerous circumstances that are unique to your experiences and interactions with them. Be as elaborate as you can.

Now comes the interesting and effective part of the process...You have to realize that everything that comes after the "because..." is actually a 'Crystallized' story that you have bought into in order to justify your belief that you are not loved. No matter how true the circumstances were about what has transpired, it is YOUR INTERPRETATION of those circumstances that create the story that you have built up in your head about yourself. Your goal at this phase is to realize that there is a deeper level to why you interpreted their thoughts, words, or actions in that particular way. For instance, using the example above, you may come to find that you already had experiences in the past that caused you to feel unloved, perhaps even with those same characters. So this is where you will draw upon the chronological listing you made and try to identify the first instance[s] of you feeling unloved by your parents. Then you must make the connection that your interpretation of their actions, words, behaviors, [or lack thereof sometimes, too] are what are responsible for 'Crystallizing' the trauma into your being. One thing that is really important here is not to use 'Spiritual Escapism' to avoid the problem. What is necessary is to really dive into PERSONAL ACCOUNTABILITY for letting these memories impact you emotionally the way they have. So again, in RED PEN, you will want to write down a sentence that re-frames the trauma, but in the context of you taking accountability for interpreting the circumstances in such a way that it developed Trauma. For instance, Even though my parents were not there for me and often neglected me, I didn't feel loved because I needed more time, attention, and love than they were able to or willing to provide. In this way, you can finally release your parents as being the problem, since you have absolutely NO CONTROL whatsoever over your parents NOR do you have any real control over what happened in the past. What you do have control over are the aspects of YOU that need[ed] to be fulfilled. And that's what this phase of the work does. It puts the ball back into YOUR court, so you have power over the situation again.

And once you have claimed the needs or desires that went unfulfilled and you assume ownership of those qualities, you're now at a phase where you can actually begin to process through the work effectively. Because you can't change the past, you can only change the present and thereby altering your future. You have to use a BLACK PEN and a new sheet of paper in your journal to write about the things that you actually need in order to feel love. This may take some time, and again, the time-frame is not important as long as you are developing yourself and making consistent progress at this work. It might be that you take days/weeks/months in any one of these Transpersonal Processes while absorbing other resources to help you along the way. In the example that I am using, it might be that you read up on books around love, like the 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman, or other books around parenting, trauma, etc.

When you identify the things you need now as well as what you needed as a child, those things get written in Black Pen. These are the things that you will end up making progress towards in your own self development in the following processes. Before moving on to the next step, be sure to tackle your chronological list and perform this same process to each of those items as well, and that will yield your proverbial "Ash" that is ready to have the Crystalline Structure extracted out of it in future phases.

2. Dissolution - The Archetype of Water -

This second phase of the process is actually really easy and may already have happened organically as a result of journaling in Phase 1. This whole step is based upon actually expressing the repressed emotions that you have never felt safe enough to express/feel regarding everything you just journaled about in Phase 1.

What happened already happened, and you can not change the past. Yet, you do have the power to change your future by changing your present state. Magic happens when you fully allow yourself to release pent up/repressed emotions in a safe context. When you cry, tears should flow so that the crystallized memories actually begin to break down. In alchemical cosmology, this is why tears are salty - they actually are dissolving the painful crystallized memories that lock our beliefs and patterns into place, therefore inhibiting our ability to transcend those limiting beliefs. Even if you have cried about these traumas before as a result of the spontaneous pain of remembering the trauma, working with them consciously to fully break down the belief system is a vital and necessary step. When, and only when, you have Calcined and then Dissolved and completely expressed the repressed emotions and all the pain from the situation[s] corresponding to why you feel you are the way you are today, can you move on. So express that emotion, and when you're ready, move to the next step.

3. Separation - The Archetype of Wind -

This third phase is also easy to describe, though it takes much longer to perform. This phase is where you perform 'Resolution Setting' and start to make progress towards becoming a new individual. Your journey on this path of Separation begins with a BLACK PEN and a new journal entry. The task of Separation is done by identifying what types of behaviors, actions, words, feelings, etc; will cause you to feel like you love yourself, or whatever it is that you need to heal as discovered by the Calcination and Dissolution processes. So for instance, after Calcination and Dissolution, you should no longer be burdened by self-limiting beliefs concerning the 'Transpersonal Material' you are working on at the moment. Yet is nothing short of natural to express doubt that you are capable of receiving the types of love that you may want to receive, or whatever else it is you are working on. So in this example, the best course of action would be to develop the qualities in yourself that are Lovable. Become very clear about what your love languages are and start treating yourself in a way that shows that you love yourself. This will do WONDERS for attracting others who treat you the same way. You and you alone, at least in adulthood, set the precedent for how others treat you and how they love you. If you don't love yourself or treat yourself as a lovable person, then others will simply follow suit. This is a perennial principle.

Making resolutions, especially simple ones that you can achieve and perform daily or weekly with consistency, is the ONLY way that you can achieve your goals. So if you feel like in order to show love to yourself that you need to have more confidence in your appearance, then taking daily actions to alter your appearance is necessary. If you feel that in order to show love to yourself, that you need to have the love language of gifts present in your life, then it is up to you to gift yourself things on a regular basis. The key is that you have to fulfill your love language and begin to feel worthy of your own love. And remember, you have to make consistent progress towards performing those things to reinforce new memories, new behaviors, and new feelings. Neurochemistry is your best friend if you know how to use it on your side. GABA, Dopamine, Serotonin, and other neurotransmitters responsible for "good feelings" are triggered best by attaining feelings of SELF SATISFACTION. The more you satisfy your own inner needs, the more your brain gets used to operating in new ways that are infinitely healthier and more conducive to you feeling the way you would like to feel. And with just 28 days of consistent progress in this regard, you will have begun developing a HABIT that will set the precedent for all future experiences. You will find that IF others don't treat you the way you have become accustomed to treating yourself, they are people you will organically have 0 interest in maintaining a relationship with. So we call this phase Separation partially because you not only separate out the behaviors and actions that have perpetuated the undesirable experiences of the past, but also people who are no longer congruent with your new phase of evolution will also fall away from your life and therefore be separated from you. As enough people and old experiences that tied you to your old habits and self-defeating thoughts + behaviors fall away, you will have a solution that can be crystallized into something completely new, which leads us to our next phase

4. Crystallization - The Archetype of Earth

DW Hauck calls this conjunction, but his whole take on this really doesn't make sense in the laboratory despite his attempt to make it so. So I have called this crystallization instead. It's more or less the same transpersonal process, it's just that it is holographic enough to fit into labwork without changing context. In this phase, it's time for you to actually make progress in removing yourself from the safe incubator of loving yourself and performing Inner Work, and you will begin instead to offer yourself again to the world. This might come by way of putting yourself 'on the market again' to date someone or it might just be developing relations with others who see this "new you" as you are and treat you the way that you want to be treated. There are thousands of ways that crystallization can manifest itself based on how thoroughly you were able to perform the last 3 processes. But the end result will be that you finally attain the Love that you crave[d] from childhood and it is reflected in the ways you treat yourself and the ways other people treat you. And when you feel fulfilled in this regard for long enough, the Transpersonal Corpus of these first four phases is complete.

If you still happen to attract people or circumstances or have self-limiting beliefs about yourself, then you just have to go back to your journal entries and pick another one of the 'Transpersonal Materials' to work with and see it through to this phase as well. It can take working on 4 or 5 materials sometimes before people start to see the types of progress they really want out of life, so it's important to pace yourself and be patient and kind to yourself and realize that all the trauma that has compounded over the years didn't happen in just a month or two months. It took 20+ years to develop in most cases, and so even if it takes you a year or two to get to the place where you feel confident and fulfilled with the basest needs and requirements you have, you are making EXCELLENT progress!!!! And this is where your journal is REALLY awesome because it will reflect back to you exactly how much you have already processed any time you might start to "get down" about your situation. Remember that life has very little purpose if we are not evolving and transforming - the whole purpose of life is SOLELY to grow and evolve based on the crises that present themselves in our life. Crisis is actually what drives evolution and no life would be worth living without it. There is a Druid Axiom from the Book of Pheryllt in the Welsh Tradition that translates to, "I will be as a Bluestar upon a field of green, spiraling upwards towards a Golden Sun." This axiom has always been a great comfort to me anytime I have felt that my traumas were too great to undertake or when I felt I wasn't making progress "quickly enough" to meet my own expectations. It helped me realize that the Bluestar doesn't grow 4' tall in a single day or even in a single month. It takes consistent nourishment from the Rains that Heavens provide and the Nutrients that the Soil Provides in order to support its growth, and most importantly, it takes the right amount of light and darkness to nurture that growth. And that's where I have come to realize that my expectations are often times what are out of balance with Natural rhythms. When I look to my journals, I can SEE and FEEL the progress that has been made, and it offers great comfort to know that even though I am not where I "want to be" that I am where I "need to be" at any given moment.

5. Extraction - The Archetype of the Soul -

DW Hauck calls this process fermentation, but fermentation is just one method of extraction - there are MANY forms of extraction, and so I changed the name of this to fit the lab work more congruently as well, but the perennial principles involved in the process remain more or less the same. After the first four processes, you will have sufficiently altered the traumas that have been holding you back in life and preventing you from feeling fulfilled on the level of your basest needs and desires. But over time, the desire for the human individual to grow beyond their current situation will creep up on you. You may come to realize that even when you have a loving partner, full financial stability, and maybe even a new relationship with your parents, that you STILL are not fully satisfied with your life. Perhaps it's because the job that provides you with financial stability is stale and monotonous and has absolutely NOTHING to do with what you REALLY want to do. When we're traumatized, we're just looking to stabilize ourselves enough to survive without compounding more trauma; but as soon as a person is out of the survival mindset for any length of time, they turn their attention towards being fulfilled in other ways that satisfy the soul. For instance, you may have always loved art and wanted to become an artist. But the necessary requirements for you to turn your attention to that were so heavily drowned out by the necessity for survival that you had no time or energy to throw at that goal. So this phase is about reclaiming, or perhaps even discovering for the first time, what it is that you REALLY want to do that will fulfill your psyche. This also involves using a BLACK PEN in your journal to determine what thing or things you are interested in doing that will fulfill your soul. For instance, for me, it's making an impact on others and helping them by providing tools to help achieve sanity of body, mind, and spirit. Whatever it is that really DRIVES you and EXCITES you is what you'll be focusing on DREAMING ABOUT.

This phase is all about DREAMING and working to get a raw material that contains the Essence of your dreams. For instance, when I first went through these Transpersonal Processes, I wanted to make an impact on people by helping them achieve sanity of Body, Spirit, and Soul - the Dream I had of how this was possible was owning a Metaphysical Store that was holistic and unified in its approach. I wanted to offer classes and products that would help people do exactly that. And in my head, this produced such a state of happiness that I knew for a fact that this is what I wanted to do. So I wrote about it and dreamed about it until my dream was very clear.

A person has to be careful to not go out and achieve their dreams straight away, though, because dreams are very elusive and there is very little tangible substance to them. They are mostly filled full of imagery that helps us imagine the feelings of being fulfilled, but those images ARE NOT AT ALL the end product. And if a person goes out and tries to make their dreams happen without distilling it down further, then it can cause just create new crisis and new types of trauma.

For instance, less than a month after I made my journal entry, I found a couple who just started a new metaphysical center who had absolutely no idea what they were doing. I got hired as an Energy Worker at their location but I had no incoming business. I had a bunch of ideas that they could employ to help draw in business, and it ended up that they really like my ideas and asked for my help to transform their center into the vision I had for my own. So we transformed their business into what was in my head. But even though I was doing all the things EXACTLY the way that I had dreamed and journaled about, life was very tough. I was working 16+ hour days, had to perform accounting, take care of taxes, deal with an accountant whom I absolutely detested, and I was no longer at home. My daughter had just been born about 7 months prior to me doing all this, and I was missing out on A LOT of her early development and kept telling myself that this was all for the best and it was just temporary. And my ex-wife, who was then my current wife, felt neglected and was experiencing postpartum symptoms that she was not open with me about. I was no more satisfied after working hard on that business than I was BEFORE I ever got involved. And all my sacrifices were in vain, as I soon had to take lots of time off work to salvage a relationship with my wife and to be present in my daughter's life, which caused the business to fold because the couple that owned it knew NOTHING about metaphysics or how to run a business. Everything was on my shoulders. And ultimately in the end, all that time spent on the business didn't make me any money and only caused my relationship to end due to irreparable damages made through neglect. My life tumbled down around me. And this same thing happens to EVERYONE who foolishly and blindly tries to follow their dreams.

The dream is simply a container that tells you how you really want to feel; it is not telling you how you should do things to feel that way. This is the biggest thing you should keep in mind during this phase. And this leads us to our next phase....

6. Distillation/Refinement - The Archetype of Spirit -

This phase is about developing disciplines that help you accomplish the feelings that you want to feel about your own life. I was told one time by a Tibetan Lama named Tsering that everybody claiming to do spiritual work is simply aggrandizing their ego and working with their soul's desires and they are doing nothing to cultivate spirit. I didn't know what he meant at the time, but now I do. True Spirituality has nothing to do with what you claim to be interested in, it has EVERYTHING to do with the disciplines and daily actions that give your Soul's Desires energy to be fulfilled. Spirit, therefore, moves through us when we are performing actions that make the way we want to feel a reality. So here I am, about a decade later after having recuperated from my failed Metaphysical Business Venture, actually feeling spiritually and psychologically fulfilled in my work. Even though I am still teaching and offering products and helping people achieve sanity in Body, Soul, and Spirit - two things are true about the differences. 1. I had to spend years distilling out the dream I had and determining that I needed to do things that made me feel fulfilled. If something didn't make me feel fulfilled, I stopped doing it and I kept performing that process until I achieved my own sense of Spiritual satisfaction. 2. I had to spend years in my lab developing the products that now line my shelves to make my current business a remote venture that wasn't cutting corners to keep up with demand. The truth is that when I was developing products to keep up with demand, I was always stressed and never felt fulfilled because I was not able to exercise my own creativity or to fulfill my inner desires around the work. It took a long time to realize that I didn't need to have my own Metaphysical Store to teach from or to carry my products. I was very limited in my beliefs, and those beliefs were in turn limiting my potential. I had to completely calcine those beliefs and walk myself through the entire Transpersonal Alchemy process again and again in order to arrive at the conclusion that if I just stayed true to what brings me the most pleasure and satisfaction, that I am on the right path and other people will naturally be attracted to that. It had taken years and years and years, but I have finally achieved that goal.

So this whole process really is just about identifying the ways that you want to feel based on the ways that your dreams from the Extraction process make you feel, while simultaneously dropping and ridding yourself of all the false imagery in the dream. Concentrate your energy then, on performing tasks and developing disciplines that actually create spiritual fulfillment, which is to say provide a sense of TRUE SATISFACTION for the day's work. Knowing that your actions today made an impact on your self worth can get you one step closer to feeling truly fulfilled as an individual. This takes time. And Journaling in Black Pen all along the way of this journey is important. You might have to go through several rounds of distillation in order to obtain the purity of Spirit that you might be seeking. But eventually, if you keep at it and do the work slowly, with full awareness, and ensure that the way you FEEL about your work is always satisfying, you are on the right path. That DOES NOT MEAN that things are going to be instantly successful for you. It is my experience that it can sometimes take many years of cultivating the spirit to feel fully fulfilled. And if you were to suddenly feel fully fulfilled without having the experiences and trials and growth that leads to that, then your life would not have much purpose. Those who are Rich in Spirit have learned to perpetually overcome adversity and obstacles, and it is their determination and resolution to stick with their disciplines, even when they are hard, that created that Richness and depth in the first place.

7. Coagulation - The Process of Combining Body, Soul, and Spirit -

Coagulation is only ready to occur when you have:

A: processed traumas & self limiting beliefs, and overcome the obstacles in your way that inhibited your body from being a proper vessel to hold the purified Soul and Spirit. This is characterized by Steps 1-4. This is the Body or Salt as called in the Laboratory.

B: performed introspection and "soul searching" with enough seriousness and intensity that you are absolutely certain of the types of things that bring you psychological satisfaction in life. This is the soul or the Sulfur as called in the Laboratory.

C: performed clarification of your dreams and developed the necessary habits and behaviors to give life to the aspects of your psyche that are looking to be fulfilled. This is the Spirit or Mercury as called in the Laboratory.

Once these processes have been completed and you hold all three purified substances, then their Recombination into a Single Unified Whole is called for. This looks different for each individual, but it will be characterized by your entire life taking on new meaning that is self-driven and personally relevant and completely fulfilling on all levels. Your body will be healthy and be a vehicle for the Spirit to enliven it and give the energy necessary to enact the volition of the soul. This is Coagulation. And once performed, an individual will have fully TRANSFORMED themselves.

Transformation is far different than change. I can change a vase by throwing it on the ground and shattering it. But if I want to transform the vase, I might first have to smash it, get the small shards, melt them down, and re-cast them into a shape that is no longer recognizable as a vase. In that way, and only in that way, has the vase transformed as it no longer serves any of the roles or performs any of the functions that it initially did. It's purpose is entirely different and the feeling people have when around it are totally different. This is transformation. And everyone and everything is looking to perform this process. It is the ultimate goal of all things to evolve towards the end of being holistically unified in this way. So what makes an Alchemist capable of transformation, not just change, is that they understand and utilize these 7 principles for the purpose of their own self-evolution.

With all that being said, it is my hope that you now take these processes and apply them to your own personal situation[s] in life to evolve and transform yourself. You are SO worth it and nothing else is more important or worth your time than self-evolution!

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