Updated: Dec 6, 2022
Whoever drinks from the fountain of eternal youth becomes young again. So the legend says. The desire to stop aging is of all times. Herodotus is said to have found the source of rejuvenation in Ethiopia, explorer Juan Ponce de León said to have found the treasure in the Bahamas.
For as long as humankind has existed, we have dreamed of ending aging. To permanently rejuvenate oneself would be to remain immune to all diseases. According to contemporary aging experts Ray Kurzweil and Aubrey de Grey, the most threatening disease for humans is aging itself. When aging is cured, we will no longer be susceptible to diseases. According to experts, science is currently making huge strides. Kurzweil and De Grey argue that there are already people on earth who will no longer die of aging.
Knowledge of ways to extend human life stretches back to ancient times. For as long as humans have dreamt of eternal youth, clever minds have been working to develop an antidote to ageing. A remedy that guarantees smooth skin, promotes hair growth, rejuvenates organs… A drug that enables you to maintain the perfect condition of someone in their 20s…
In ancient times, druids and alchemists were the specialists in health and rejuvenation. Alchemists searched for the prima materia, the primal substance from which all other substances are made. That substance was also called the ‘philosopher’s stone’ or ‘elixir of immortality.’
Alchemists were chemists who used secret formulas to mimic and accelerate natural processes. Their books show how they turned lead into gold. Their goal was to complete the Great Work – an alchemical term for discovering the philosopher’s stone – which would contain the secret of immortality.
Legend has it that there are alchemists who have long since accomplished this task. They have lived among us for thousands of years, without ageing and without their identities having been revealed. It sounds like an exciting fairy tale, yet it may just be true that the prima materia – the substance that makes up all matter in our universe – has long been discovered. So suppose imbibing this primary substance actually does stop ageing?
Based on current knowledge, carbon most closely qualifies as the prima materia the alchemists were seeking. After oxygen (56%), carbon is the most abundant atom in the human body, accounting for 23%.
That name was only introduced after chemistry had succeeded alchemy as a science, in the late eighteenth century. Alchemists had their own language. They employed symbols and metaphors, ensuring that their knowledge was only accessible to initiated researchers.
Colloidal gold and silver
Alchemists were long seen as a threat by the church. They were not only concerned with perfecting matter; they also strove for spiritual growth. Through perfection of the mind they aimed to achieve enlightenment. The church condemned this ‘competition with God,’ which is why alchemy was banned for centuries. The knowledge of transforming lower metals into higher metals, like silver and gold, was guarded by alchemists as the holy grail.
Even the last great alchemist, Sir Isaac Newton, secretly sought the philosopher’s stone in an effort to achieve enlightenment and become immortal. He never found it. He did, however, indirectly contribute to the invention of electrolysis. In later times, this made it possible to produce colloidal gold, silver and platinum, which is a blessing for today’s alchemist. By simply incorporating the colloidal precious metals in their diet, both mind and body are rejuvenated.