Stories > Splendor Solis > Plate 18 - The Red King (Luna)
Within a crowned flask now again with sealed top, the King stands on an upturned lunar crescent, with an orb and sceptre in hand, bathed in a golden glow. The chariot of the moon (holding a lunar crescent) is drawn by two girls. Only one set of wheels, representing Cancer. Lunar scenes depicted: traveling, hawking, shooting, fishing. (Stephen Skinner's Splendor Solis commentary)
The Red King vs The Somebody
"This young king is under the sign of the moon, and he is standing on the convex surface of a golden crescent moon. So he is not a symbol of the Masculine only but rather a symbol of the Masculine tempered by the Feminine."
"The maidens pulling the chariot suggests that, at the culmination of the process, the instincts (represented by the animals pulling the chariots in the previous images) have become humanized."
"The culmination of the work contains the two poles of the opposites, sun and moon, Sol and Luna. The kingly presence in the alembic, represented in human form, express the fullness of the rubedo, the red color that represents the end of the process."
"Higher consciousness is from Nature, and yet is something which Nature alone could not create. 'Although the urge to consciousness exist with nature - within the unconscious psyche - an ego is needed to realize fully that natural urge.' This final picture is about mankind using Nature while honoring Nature, so that none of the human activities are really against Nature. Humans recognize themselves as part of nature and try to live in balance with it."
In my drawing of the Somebody the bird that was previously hiding (in the Nobody) is now fully participating in life, with the sun illuminating the whole scene. It also points to wholeness of the personality. Here somebody means being a full person, someone unique, in other words having the ego needed to realize consciousness. And it also means "some" body, in the sense of being a part of something larger, like Nature. Although here Nature is standing tall above the city it's also making room for humanity in the center, or the ego, symbolized by the bird house.
Note: the quotes in italic are from the book by J.L. Henderson and D.N. Sherwood, Transformation of the Psyche: The Symbolic Alchemy of the Splendor Solis

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