Alchemy + Story: What Hermes Forgot

To fully immerse yourself into a game, a performance, or even a dream, a level of forgetfulness makes it all the worthwhile. A bit of amnesia allows you to believe in many things… anything. Welcome to this reality, where the truth of it all was forgotten in order to have an experience. But the truth is always in plain sight IF you’ve the eyes to see and ears to hear the crumb trails left by the Alchemists and their ability to articulate the processes that leads one back to the beginning of it all (the One) through story and laboratory operations.
In the beginning there was no-thing (void) and chaos (pure potential and possibility out of Infinity) from which God created a thing. That thing separated itself into the Two which immediately became the Three Principles, birthing forth the four elementals, the seven archetypes/chakras/planets, and the twelve performers/alchemical processes. You can find this all over the world through many cultures and practices but all are based on Spirituality (the Mercury) or the Material (the Salt) and operational alchemy seems to be the one whose sole path is directly to the Soul/Sulfur, not through Hermetics, not through magic, not through science, and not through spirituality because that's the Mind seeking more Mind although the Mind is Key. 
It may be that this is not for everyone, the remembering of what Hermes forgot, but alas we are offering an opportunity for Hermes to come and play with the crumb trails it's left coded and so secretly hidden for so long. 



Join us for the week of the Summer Solstice // June 19th - 23rd // in the high desert of Tesuque, NM

Raven Israel, Kalin Rodgers, and Christine Jones will guide an intimate group of 10 through the entire process of creating and experiencing a complete plant Spagyric from beginning to end. 

Enrollment is now open!

Reserve your spot here or by emailing us at: subject line "plant alchemy".


Exchange: $1500 


  • Operational alchemical course curriculum
  • Beautiful retreat setting in the Tesuque Roundhouse temple
  • Daily local, organic breakfast and lunch provided
  • Daily meditation
  • Materia Proprius journal
  • Checklist to build an at-home lab set-up 
  • Suggested resources and reading material

note: Students will be paired into groups of two and will have access to a complete laboratory set-up in order to complete each day's operation.

*This is an immersive offering and so we ask that you provide your own accommodations and travel. Please contact us for suggestions and local resources.



Within these lab processes, we will use ancient alchemical methods as they merge with modern technology to bring body and mind into resonance with the soul. We will guide each practitioner through selection and harvesting of a plant subject, distillation, fermentation, rectification, calcination, lixiviation, cohobation, and maturation of a spagyric beginning to end.
During the course, we will relate/correspond Jungian archetypes, mythology/storytelling, operational alchemy, and some elements of physics/science/chemistry in order to better understand how "Consciousness relates to Matter" and how we can apply these new concepts to our daily lives.




DAY 1: History & Correspondence

    • History, Definition, & Philosophy
    • Alchemy across cultures
      • Egyptian Alchemy
      • Rasa Shastra (Indian Alchemy)
      • Chinese Alchemy
    • The Philosopher’s Stone & Correspondence
      • 1 - The One Thing
      • 3 - The 3 Principles
      • 4 - The 4 Elements
      • 7 - The 7 Planets
      • 12 - The 12 Processes
    • Types of Spagyrics
      • Tinctures
      • Essences
      • Elixirs
    • Volatile & Fixed 
      • Animal > Plant > Mineral > Metal
    • Introduction to storytelling through Spagyria
    • Begin macerating our material

DAY 2: Distillation - the separation of the soul from the mind and body

    • Definition & qualities of a Sulfur
    • Volatile Sulfur vs Fixed Sulfur
    • Conducting experiments with “living” materials
    • 3 types of distillation & the difference in oils
      • Steam Distillation + separatory funnel
      • Hydro Distillation
      • Clevenger Apparatus
      • Base, mid, & top notes in perfumery
    • Selecting the appropriate distillation for the different parts of the plant
    • Phytochemical constituents
    • Emphasize the importance of detailed note-taking & begin Materia Medica page on the material at hand
    • Introduction to Fermentation & begin fermentation process

 DAY 3: Fermentation - the release of spirit through putrefaction and rectification thereof (separating and purifying the mind from the body and the emotions)

    • Definition & qualities of the Mercury
    • Examples of solvents & alchemical Menstruums
      • Polarity of most common solvents (Alcohol & Vinegar)
      • Deliquescence & Oil of Tartar
      • VRM
      • Glacial Acetic Acid
    • How to extract from plants without volatile sulfur
    • Distillation of spirit, & proper cleaning through rectification
    • Seeding intelligence with philosophical wine spirit
    • Creating a hermetic seal
    • Introduction to Calcination & drying of plant material

DAY 4: Calcination - the purification of the body through fire; Cohobation

  • Definition & qualities of Salt
  • Salts of Salt
  • Salts of Sulfur
  • Spagyric Anatomy of Plants
  • Cohobation - adding hot salts to cold sulfur
  • Spagyrics as Prodrugs
  • Measuring, labeling, and testing 
  • Proper Storage of Spagyrics 

DAY 5: Animal & Mineral Alchemy; Integration of processes into lifestyle

  • Introduction to the secretive Animal Alchemy
  • Introduction to the realm of Mineral/Metallic Alchemy
  • Discussion on the importance of Vegetable Works prior to Metallics
  • Mind, Body, & Soul; Living an Alchemical daily lifestyle through praxis
  • Recap on works from Day 1-4
  • Mini lectures talks from featured practitioners corresponding the alchemical lifestyle
  • Q&A with students
  • Open mic where students share their experiences and effects of the course
  • Party Time.


Ultimately it is as we gather in the the lab that we set the stage or the setting of our story. Through observation and laboratory practices we begin to identify and know the archetypes and all of their patterns within mythology, religion, ritual, cinema, literature, business, mathematics, physics, and every system created or known by humankind. We begin to predict with accuracy how each character will perform with one another on every level of reality from the cellular to the societal to the agricultural to the solar system. It is through the quiet observation and the repetition of separation and purification that we can recombine and recognize the story elements. This is the moment when we begin to understand the nature of all things.

This is the moment when we begin to remember what - we - forgot.