Hark the Herald Isis and Nephthys Sing

It’s all go with copyediting the Quareia course and writing my Egypt book at the moment, so this week I haven’t had much time to spend putting together a blog article.  Instead I wanted to share a piece of silliness I put together just before Christmas for my own amusement. Part of my research for … Continue reading “Hark the Herald Isis and Nephthys Sing”

Let’s Learn Hieroglyphs 3: Bag your Biliterals

So you’ve got your textbook and have memorized your monoliterals and the order in which they appear in the Egyptian alphabet.  Now it’s time to tackle the steepest part of the first mountain to climb when learning Egyptian: memorizing those tricky biliterals. This is the mountain faced with which many give up.  It took me … Continue reading “Let’s Learn Hieroglyphs 3: Bag your Biliterals”

How to bleach linen: a Theosophist ‘explains’ Egyptian mythology

On a bookshelf in my home there are two books by G. A. Gaskell.  One is called A Dictionary of all Scriptures and Myths, and the other Egyptian Scriptures Interpreted.  In them G. A. Gaskell fits various myths into the Theosophist worldview. Egyptian Scriptures Interpreted will be the focus of this post. I really, really … Continue reading “How to bleach linen: a Theosophist ‘explains’ Egyptian mythology”

Ankh-af-na-Khonsu’s dancing on the ceiling

Oh, what a feeling! When we’re dancing on the ceiling… —Lionel Richie The name Ankh-af-na-Khonsu will immediately give you tingles if, like me, you at some point imbibed a heady dose of Crowley.  For those of you who haven’t partaken, Ankh-af-na-Khonsu was the chap whose funeral stela Crowley’s wife, Rose Edith Kelly, pointed out to … Continue reading “Ankh-af-na-Khonsu’s dancing on the ceiling”

Faulknerese: a mild case of traduttore, traditore

When you delve into the subject of Egyptian magic, you very quickly discover how much you must rely on translations of primary sources.  Almost as quickly you discover how much those translations differ depending on their age and the translator’s worldview. E. A. Wallis Budge, for example, did not have the advantage of our modern … Continue reading “Faulknerese: a mild case of traduttore, traditore”

Utterances, forces, and beings in Egyptian magic

As I research my book I have been struck by the extent to which the Ancient Egyptians personified forces as beings, and depersonified beings as utterances.  Have a look, for example, at this description from Coffin Text Spell 261: I am he whom the Sole Lord made before there came into being the two meals … Continue reading “Utterances, forces, and beings in Egyptian magic”

The Shabaka Stone

This will be a blog mainly about my research in Ancient Egyptian magic, with special attention paid to the difficult bits: the bits that don’t seem to fit, that are tangled up, or that don’t seem to make much sense.  Often it’s the wrinkles that give the best clues about what lies beneath. I expect … Continue reading “The Shabaka Stone”