As I entered an ancient splendid building West il Balad and made my way up the endless spiral staircase of worn marble and ironworks to the top floor I found a bustling atmosphere of artists, singers, instrumental musicians and spectators spanning all the lands of Egypt. Forty young Egyptian singers, men and women, three rababa players from Upper Egypt and two tabla players readied themselves. Stick dancers stood by with stick in hand.
The New Hermopolis is a cultural village, which is the vision and creation of the social alchemist Dr. Mervat Nasser. Coined by Nasser, social alchemy refers to transmutation of society through the Unity of Being as a fundamental principle that leads one to the desire of helping humanity to evolve into greater perfection.
The New Hermopolis aims to capitalize on the unique spiritual and cultural heritage of this ancient city towards the economic, spiritual and cultural revival of a largely neglected and impoverished fragile fragment of Egypt.
Alchemy, which originally comes from the Arabic word “Al Kimiya” (300 BC) literally means “the transmutation” was adopted by the Arabs from the Alexandrians and thence spread to Europe via Spain in 711 AD. Nasser was drawn to this spiritual location, once the ancient city of Hermopolis, located near Tuna El Gebel, Mallawi, El Minia.