Magic Mushrooms: The Real Philosopher's Stones?
3 min

Magic Mushrooms: The Real Philosopher's Stones?

3 min

There is a lot of evidence out there to suggest that the philosopher’s stone is real, it's just not what most people have come to expect.

Throughout history, the philosophers stone has been a fabled myth, synonymous with the holy grail. In fact, to alchemists, it is the holy grail of their profession. We are not talking Harry Potter here either - although the philosophers stone in the books is undoubtedly an interpretation of the real deal. No, while the philosophers stone is purported to impart immortality to the user, it is not a stone. It is in fact, a mushroom - magic mushrooms to be precise.

While it may sound outlandish, there is a lot of logic and reasoning behind the claim. To begin with, it is important to understand that at its core, alchemy is a philosophical science, relying on the spiritual connections between earth and minerals. The main goal is to achieve wisdom and immortality through the use of compounds that join "Sol" and "Luna" - the figurative sun and the moon.

This, already, makes a direct and literal interpretation of immortality and the philosophers stone hard to achieve. In alchemy, the term stone refers to a salt that can be extracted or produced from a plant source, or in some cases, the plant itself. It has led to the belief that there are in fact many sources for the stone. In the Alchemical axiom, it is stated that the philosophers stone is "not of stone, not of bone, not of metal." This quite literally means the philosophers stone is not sourced from mineral, animal, or metal. It leaves few options but for the stone to lay in the world of plants.


Next comes the main criteria of the stone - the ability to give the user immortality. One of the reasons the philosophers stone is seen as a myth is because of the literal interpretation of this criteria. Most people see this to mean immortality of the body; to live forever. However, this is not what alchemists pursue. Mythologist Joseph Campbell explained it as such,

"[the] search for physical immortality proceeds from a misunderstanding of the traditional teaching. On the contrary, the basic problem is: to enlarge the pupil of the eye, so that the body with its attendant personality will no longer obstruct the view. Immortality is then experienced as a present fact…"

It suggests that the philosopher stone is, in fact, the search for our very own immortal soul, to see the wisdom and truth of ourselves without the burdens of ego and personality. Sounds a lot like tripping on hallucinogens to us. It is, in large, why the philosophers stone is also known as the stone of projection, as it allows our inner being to become unshackled and explore the workings of the universe.


Those who have used magic mushrooms know first-hand the ability they have to disconnect us from ourselves and allow us to see the wider picture, finding wisdom and insights within our souls.

In the Secret Doctrine, it is said that a person who uses the philosophers stone "finds himself both linked to his external body, and yet away from it in his spiritual form. The latter, freed from the former, soars for the time being in the ethereal higher regions, becoming virtually ‘as one of the gods."

Once again, it shows that the interpretation of immortality is more philosophical than literal, and likely obtained through an entheogenic experience. Ancient alchemists claimed that the stone gave the user the ability to leave behind his "own identity [and] become at home with the Gods."

While a light trip skirts around the boundaries of this, a full blown mushroom trip can easily achieve this feeling of oneness with the universe, and for the spiritually inclined, the Gods.

Magic mushrooms, or more specifically psilocybin, fits the bill to be classed as the stone. It is of the plant kingdom, it can be extracted, and its use imparts the interpretation of immortality in the way the old alchemists described it.

Of course, it could be argued that other hallucinogens could also be classified as the philosopher’s stone, and surely they could. The philosophers stone was never defined as one substance, and obtainable through multiple avenues. The old writings that say it must come from a plant may have simply been decided from the knowledge available at the time, as DMT - arguably the most potent hallucinogen known to man - can be obtained from animal sources.


Even knowing that there are more potent hallucinogens out there, why is it maintained that mushrooms are the true philosophers stone? It all comes back to the spiritual significance of the material and its connection with Earth, Sol and Luna - something other hallucinogens may lack. In Hitchcock's study Remarks Upon Alchemy it is noted:

“the Secret of our Stone…shall shew itself forth as though it bloomed sweetly upon the dunghill. And if you shall ask me what it resembles – I shall say to you that it lives and is to be found in the likeness and form of many things in Nature. For it can be as the Moon as has been said – If they say the Moon is blue, we must believe that it is true. – But this only if molested, for the colour of the Moon is white in its naturalistic State.”

Conveniently, magic mushrooms, such as Psilocybe cubensis grow in nature, upon dung. They also resemble the moon, having pale round caps, unless "molested" in which they turn blue.

Maybe, just maybe, the suppression of psychedelics like magic mushrooms is a Knights Templar conspiracy, of whom were renowned for searching out the truth of alchemy and the philosopher's stone - if you are into those kinds of theories. Either way, the old interpretations of the philosopher’s stone, and the immortality it imparts, all strongly point to the use of magic mushrooms. There are many more riddled references to the philosopher’s stone as a mushroom - some more obscure than others. But they all suggest that magic mushrooms are the key to immortality. So what are you waiting for?

Luke Sumpter
Luke Sumpter
With a BSc (Hons) degree in Clinical Health Sciences and a passion for growing plants, Luke Sumpter has worked as a professional journalist and writer at the intersection of cannabis and science for the past 7 years.
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