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Alchemy was an early kind of proto-chemistry. Practitioners, using some of the same lab equipment we do today, experimented with transforming matter from one state to another. Melting metal, turning liquids into gas, reducing solids to ashes. They also believed that if they could transform matter, why not also the spirit, or the self? That last part is what’s attracting new followers today, like Sara Durn, as she told Charles Monroe-Kane.