Memory, Medieval Bestiaries, and the Gates

What follows is speculative, but if you’re up for a bit of a ramble, you might find this post quite fun. You will, of course, be familiar with the old trope that in Egyptian art, everyone looks like everybody else, and that the only way of telling one person apart from another is to look … Continue reading “Memory, Medieval Bestiaries, and the Gates”

The Book of Gates as it appears on the Sarcophagus of Seti I

The primary source for my translation of The Book of Gates was the alabaster sarcophagus of Seti I, which these days lives in Sir John Soane’s Museum, London.  Its carvings were published in full in Bonomi, Joseph and Samuel Sharpe. The Alabaster Sarcophagus of Oimenepthah I., King of Egypt. London: Longman, Green, Longman, Roberts, and Green, 1864.  Wonderfully, … Continue reading “The Book of Gates as it appears on the Sarcophagus of Seti I”

Introducing: The Book of Gates

About a month before we were due to finish the massive project that was the Quareia course, Josephine and I started chatting about what we might do after it was all done. She was just starting work on writing the final module, and I was about a module behind that in my copyediting. Now, a … Continue reading “Introducing: The Book of Gates”

Bloodhound books 2: Doubles, Shadows, and Cannibals

I have written before about what I call bloodhound books: books that collect together large numbers of clues pertaining to the Mysteries.  I call them bloodhound books because, like a bloodhound, they have a very well-developed nose for magic, but they do not necessarily view their content from a magical point of view.  A bloodhound can track … Continue reading “Bloodhound books 2: Doubles, Shadows, and Cannibals”

The Amduat II: Unity of Opposites

…their philosophy, which, for the most part, is veiled in myths and in words containing dim reflexions and adumbrations of the truth, as they themselves intimate beyond question by appropriately  placing sphinxes before their shrines to indicate that their religious teaching has in it an enigmatical sort of wisdom. —Plutarch, Isis and Osiris, 354 C. tr. … Continue reading “The Amduat II: Unity of Opposites”

The Amduat, or, Backstage at the Theatrum Mundi

All the world’s a stage, And all the men and women merely players —Jacques, As You Like It, Act II Scene 7. In this post I want to share some long, rambling thoughts about the long, rambling title of a very strange ‘book’ painted on the tomb walls of some eighteenth- to twentieth-dynasty kings, the first … Continue reading “The Amduat, or, Backstage at the Theatrum Mundi”

Conversing with gods: propaganda or vision?

In this blog entry I’d like to ram home a couple of general points that have wide explanatory power and are not talked about enough. And when they are broached as subjects, it is often to minimize their importance rather than to appreciate it. These are they: The ancients did not think like we do. Even … Continue reading “Conversing with gods: propaganda or vision?”

Hands-on with your innards

The [right arm and hand] of this Meryre is that of the western [ba, as] he emerges [and ascends to the sky. The left arm and hand] of Pepi is that of the eastern ba, as he emerges and ascends to the sky. . . This Meryre’s lower legs are those of the two bas … Continue reading “Hands-on with your innards”

Plugging holes in Creation with Sunken Cities

It’s an exciting time in Egyptology for mystics and magicians. Now more than ever, the interested amateur has a good chance of accurately unpicking the gnomic imagery and allusions of the Ancient Egyptian mystics—and thereby successfully visiting their headspace. Of course, mystics and magicians have been doing inner plane archaeology for centuries. (For details on … Continue reading “Plugging holes in Creation with Sunken Cities”

New Mysteries for Old

When Josephine suggested that I write an Egyptian reference book for magicians, one thing she particularly wanted me to cover was the development…and degeneration…of Egyptian magical knowledge through time. I have yet to reach a point where I can start writing that chapter, but I have already found some very interesting things in my research … Continue reading “New Mysteries for Old”