Recently when I read the book about Alchemy, I feel the final pursuit of alchemist and who practice Taoism in a way  is kind of similar.

I put two parts below :

” What here said by Chuang Tzu describes the man who has achieved absolute happiness.He is the perfect man, the spiritual man, and the true sage. He is absolutely happy, because he transcends the ordinary distinctions of things. He also transcends the distinction between self and the world, the ‘me’ and the ‘non-me.’ Therefore he has no self. He is the one with Tao. The Tao does nothing, and therefore also has no achievements. The sage is one with the Tao and therefore also has no achievements.He may rule he whole world, but his rule consists of just leaving mankind alone, and letting everyone exercise her own natural ability fully and freely. the Tao is nameless and so the sage who is one with the Tao is also nameless.”

Feng Youlan< A short history of Chinese philosophy >


“He who would find the answer, not  only intellectually but as a way of Life indeed as a way to Life—must begin by taking a long, hard, unblinking look at himself. He will, if he is honest, see that the root cause of all of his troubles lies in his almost total ignorance of that which matters most: his true self.”

“We shall understand the world when we understand ourselves; for it and we are inseparable halves of one whole. We are Children of God, divine seeds. One day, we shall be what our Father is.’

Stanislas Klossowski de Rola <alchemy the secret art>


“Therefore he has no self.”  “self” here in Taoism should equal “ego” in Alchemy. “The sage is one with the Tao and therefore also has no achievements.”   “achievements ” here means no practical achievements such as fame, fortune. which is quit similar to alchemist’s pursuit, in the fist step of Great Work is to detach ego from material world.

And about the final goal, Taoism and Alchemy they both pursuit transcendence, even a bit different, to reach the truth of the universe, to be at one with the world.