If we have completed the operation of separation successfully, we will have a clear consciousness of who we truly are and what elements should be carried forward into the next phase.
This next phase, conjunction, requires the mixture or joining of the separated elements left over from the last step.
However, it involves more than rejoining and carrying forward discrete elements such as our true desires, our talents and gifts and the highest elements of who we are.
At its core, the phase of conjunction is one in which the opposites are united within ourselves.
It is typically spoken of as the union of the masculine and the feminine, or the “marriage of the sun and moon.” It is the integration of the logos with eros, or the union of spirit with soul.
This mysterium coniunctionis, or alchemical marriage, involves uniting two different yet complementary ways of perceiving and being in the world.
The Ancient Egyptians believed the resulting synthesis spirit and soul produced a third type of consciousness, which they called “the Intelligence of the Heart.”
To medieval alchemists, it became known as “the Philosopher’s child,” and was considered evidence of successful completion of the white phase of alchemy resulting in the Lesser Stone.
It was thought that once this was achieved, the alchemist would from then on know exactly what was needed to ensure the final realization of the Great Work.