Prima Materia

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Prima materia: the common, elemental substance or “first matter,” “found in filth,” the “orphan” sought by the alchemists in their attempt to create the Philosopher’s Stone. The original “chaos” or “sea” that constitutes all matter. Alchemist Gerhard Dorn saw it as a substance within man: “Transform yourselves into living philosophical stones!” Jung interpreted the prima materia as an unconscious content ready to surface but needing the “heat” of awareness to cook it into a conscious experience. Also known as “lead” and “Saturn. (1)

What will you do amidst the chaos?

What will you do once the heat of awareness lifts the prima materia into consciousness?

Will you resist and try to move it back underground?

Can you turn away from that which calls out, to be transformed into something greater than: the Philosopher’s Stone? (2)

When the prima materia is dredged from our unconscious, is heated into our awareness into consciousness, it molds us into who we are to become: our truer selves.  It can feel like it is coming at us like a raging storm; it is uncomfortable, painful even, and shows us who we can be in the face of chaos and the unknown.  Will you deny yourself, fighting, the transformational process?  If so, will this be done out of fear of change, leaving yourself the same as before, or will you allow yourself to move into the uncomfortable space of the new, different, creative?

When the prima materia is called forth, when resistance has served its purpose, do you have a choice to not move forward and heal yourself?




(2) Lapis Philosophorum (Philosopher’s Stone): Also known as the ultima materia, aqua permanens (=its libido aspect), rubedo tinctura, filius macrocosmi or philosophorum, quinta essentia, panacea, medicina catholica, rotundrum, elixir vitae, lapis exilis (stone of no worth), everlasting food): the Philosopher’s Stone, prized goal of alchemy. According to legend, the Stone, a freed form of the spirit of Mercurius trapped within the prima materia or initially unprocessed raw material, grants immortality, heals all disease, and transforms base metals into gold. Jung saw it as a Self symbol–one compensating Christ–and the goal of individuation.