The Mystical Islamic Essence of the Sacred Art of Alchemy

John Eberly

Hillsdale, NY: Sophia Perennis, 2004.
136 pages
ISBN: 0-900588-48-9
Price: $18.95 US
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ISBN: 1-59731-010-7
Price: $33.95 US
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Al-Kimia: The Mystical Islamic Essence of the Sacred Art Of Alchemyby John Eberly presents a condensed history of Alchemy told through concise biographies of early Sufi Masters. Chapters examine occult areas of alchemical and spiritual interest such as jafr, an exegetical Qur’anic science akin to Hebrew Kabbalah; the Qiyamat or ‘Great Resurrection’, of the heretical Ismaili sect; the contrary path of the saintly Malamatiyya or ‘blameworthy ones’; Hermetic color theory, and ‘hidden’ art history. A glossary of transliterated terms is appended that will greatly help the beginner as well as the advanced student of these subjects.

Table of Contents



Khalid ibn Yazid—Jafar as-Sadiq—Jabir ibn Hayyan—Abu'l-Faiz Thauban ibn Ebrahim al-Mesri: Dho l'Nun
Abu Bakr Muhammad Zakariyya ar-Razi—Hakim Abu 'Ali al-Husayn abd Allah ibn Sina—Ismailis, Sufis, Malamatiyya, and al-Kimia


Shu'ayb ibn al-Husayn al-Ansari abu Madyan—Al-Kimia: The Sacred Art

Appendix I: An Operation of Ancient Al-Kimia: The Tingere and al-Aksar—Appendix II: The Emerald Tablet—Glossary of General Transliterated Islamic—Sufi Terms and Phrases—Bibliography


Al-Kimia is a sound scholarly treatment of the Islamic contribution to the art of alchemy, a rich compendium of Sufi, Shi'ite, and Hermetic lore, and a string of spiritual meditations so concentrated and poetic as to be 'operative', God-willing, on the subtle materia of the reader's psyche. It even ends with a recipe for an actual beginner's alchemical operation. In density and lucidity, a real 'gem'.
Charles Upton, author of The System of Antichrist.

The appearance of John Eberly's consummate Al-Kimia: The Mystical Islamic Essence of the Sacred Art of Alchemy is indeed cause for celebration. Readers already devoted to alchemical research are rewarded by Eberly's lucid presentation of the great adepts and their relationship to the various lineages and schools. For those less familiar with the Sacred Art, in this time of ever heightening crisis, Eberly's text provides an urgently needed opportunity to appreciate the rich and diverse history and culture of the Islamic world.
Jay Bremyer, author of The Dance of Created Lights: A Sufi Tale

About the Author

John Eberly born in Texas in 1954, is the author of Al-Kimia: The Mystical Islamic Essence of the Sacred Art of Alchemy and Love is the Mirror: Symbolism in Sufi Poetry, as well as articles, essays, poems, bibliographies, and indexes. His artwork has appeared in exhibits and publications around the world, including paintings used for two book covers for Sophia Perennis (his own Al-Kimia and Luc Benoist's The Esoteric Path). As a professional musician and songwriter, John has released two solo CDs, Imagination (2004) on the Top Tone Records label, and Retox (2006). A new CD, Beautiful Dream, is scheduled for release in late 2008. John resides in Kansas with his wife Katherine and three children.