Alchemism is more a philosophy than a religion. It is a way of looking at the world which considers all things to be built of the same components, with only the shape of those components changing what it appears as to our eyes, ears, touch, and other senses. With a bit of coercive magic and perhaps a droplet of a few various kinds of solvents and acids, the shape of those fundamentals can be altered, to bring about a new, possibly more favorable state. Many Alchemists, however, have fallen into a habit of altering states which perhaps result in more drunken stupors and glassy eyes than cures to ailments.
The founder of Alchemism as a sect is one Aleas Krunnel, a charismatic gnomish man who still lives in the Duchy of Reflaen even today.