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Coagulation is part 7/7 and marks the last step of the Alchemical process.

Corresponding to the Sun and the metal gold, this step is represented by the everlasting substance and sustenance of vital life force. Both the Sun and gold have been revered and worshiped more than any other deity or material. They reflect their power through one another on a psychic and physical level. The Sun is a symbol of immortality and regeneration, much like gold represents indestructible power and purity.

The Sun, as the center of all, maintains the balance of the entire galaxy. The effect of coagulation is like the gravitational pull that keeps all of the stars of our inner sky in equilibrium so that we may have contact with the divine. This can be seen by the golden scales in perfect balance amidst contrasting imagery.

This red phase, or Rubedo, is most closely associated with unity, and the reconciliation of the opposites. At the center of all opposites is the eternal light of the Sun and the Self as a whole. Dark and light, spirit and soul, the conscious and unconscious, each is just one half of a whole.

This is beautifully represented by the phoenix, a symbol of individuation through adaptability. The phoenix rises from his own ashes to burn a new, glorious light, eventually returning to ash to begin the cycle again. This dance refines his unique light of Self with every transformation. In this way, the phoenix is a perfect symbol of alchemy itself. Alchemy is the Mercurial process of fixing the volatile, or bringing spirit into matter. This is represented by the image of squaring the circle, a symbol of the Great Work.

To be clear, this climax of the alchemical journey is fleeting. However, it has the effect of opening the channel of consciousness, the third eye, that is aligned with divine consciousness. When this happens, one suddenly finds clarity in the mystery, and a medicinal treasure where there was once the weight of metaphorical lead. This is where we attain the Philosopher’s Stone, the discovery and understanding of one’s true Self and one’s true Will.

Every time we move through the alchemical journey to reach coagulation, our Philosopher’s Stone becomes stronger and more accessible.

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