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The Creation, according to Egyptians
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 02, 2004 1:10 pm 
Pharaoh
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Dear friends,
I have just finished Geraldine Pinch's book _Egyptian
Mythology, a Guide to the gods, goddesses, and
traditions of ancient Egypt_.

IMO, a book worth to buy. It contains much details
about gods and goddesses, which are not found in other
books about Egyptian Mythology.

The author divides the mythical history of Egypt into
7 stages :

1) the chaos, before the creation, "before two things
had developed"; the cosmos was not yet divided into
pairs of opposites. The Eight (the Ogdoad) joined
together to be fertilized by the "seed" of the serpent
Amun Kematef.

2) the emergence of the creator, "the unique one in
the Nun". Different myths mention the existence of
Mehet-Weret, the personification of the fertile aspect
of the Nun, the mother of all primeval beings,
including Apophis; the Benu-bird, who brought the
first noise and the first light to the Nun; Tatenen,
the father of the creator. G. Pinch gives an
interesting comment (n4 p94) : the land is said to
rise rather than the waters to fall; this highlights
the emergence, the rising of the primeval mound,
connected to the life-bringing erection of the
earth-god.

The primeval mound has its evil counterpart in the
shifting sandbanks.

3) the creation : the creation of life involves 3
elements,
- the creation of a body
the transfer to that body of some part of the divine
essence of the creator
- the animation of the body by the breath of life.

The following gods and myths belong to/appear in this
stage of the mythical history of Egypt :
- Shu and Amun-Ra, the gods of the unseen breath of
life
- Sia, the power of perception or insight, which
allowed the creator to visualize other forms
- Hu, the power of authoritative speech, which enabled
the creator to bring things into being by naming them
- Heka, the power by which thoughts and commands of
the creator became reality
- Neith, she created the whole world and the 7 magic
words (Esna temple, Roman period)
- Isis, the Mistress of the Word in the Beginning;
this epithet from the Roman period makes her a creator
deity
- Ptah, represents the creative mind
- Khnum, his original role seems to have been as the
divine potter who made things at the command of the
creator
- the hand of Atum, Atum excites his penis with his
hand and takes the semen into his mouth, which acts as
a substitute womb
- Shu and Tefnut, and the myth of the lost children of
the sun god
- the creation of the humanity

4) the direct rule by the creator sun god :
- the creator grows old when living on earth
- myth of the Distant Goddess
- myth of the Destruction of Humanity

5) the period of rule by other gods :
- the murder of Osiris
- the birth and childhood of Horus
- the Contendings of Horus and Seth
- the triumph of Horus

6) the period of rule by kings

7) the return to chaos and the primeval waters

*******

Some "details" I found interesting in the section on
the gods, goddesses and themes (Aker to Wepwawet) :

Anty, a god who was closely associated to Horus and
Seth. The P. Jumilhac mentions that the cult statue of
Anty was made of silver and not of gold because of the
crime Anty committed (probably the decapitation of a
cow goddess) : his skin and flesh were flayed off his
bones made of silver. When Anty has been forgiven, the
cow goddess restored his flesh with her healing milk.

Anubis and the leopard skin : a myth from the 1st
millennium BC tells how Seth approached the body of
Orisis disguised as a leopard. Anubis seized Seth and
branded him oll over with a hot iron; this is how the
leopard got its spots.

Atum : his erected penis is sometimes identified with
the high hill of sand standing for the primeval mound.

Banebdjedet, the Northern equivalent of Khnum, the
Lord of the Sexual Pleasure. Banebdjedet's form as a
ram or goat-headed man has been reinterpreted (by
early Christians in Egypt) as a devil figure who
entered the Western tradition as the Horned King of
the Witches.

Bes and Beset, by the end of the second millennium BC,
they were sometimes identified with the divine
siblings Shu and Tefnut. Beset represented as naked
was meant to overcome the hostile forces by her sexual
power (*).

(*) the sexual power to overcome evil forces can be
found in other deities such as Min : the flail on his
hand might depict him as an apotropaic deity, driving
away evil with his aggressive body language.

Birds and eggs : the remains of the primeval egg were
said to be preserved in the temple of the ibis god
Thot.

Crocodile :
- the god Maga was a crocodile son of Seth, he was the
fearsome opponent for Horus, son of Osiris.
- Penweti was a crocodile through the body of whom the
king has to pass (in NK tombs) to be reborn; he
symbolises the primeval waters.

Heryshef and the sacred lake at Herakleopolis Magna :
Osiris-Heryshef is crowned king at Herakleopolis but
he falls ill because he cannot control the power of
the headdress of Ra, who cures him by letting out the
pus and the blood - creating the sacred lake.

Horus the child and the king : Pepi II seems to be the
first king closely identified with Horus the Child
through his representations, squatting naked with his
finger to his lips, or sitting on his mother's lap.

Nehebkau : in the PT, he feeds the dead king and acts
as his messenger, but only after he has been subdued
by the finger of Atum.

***Does anyone have more details on Atum's finger
subduing Nehebkau?***

Nekhbet : could also appear as the long-horned wild
cow of the marshlands, a dangerous animal.

The Ogdoad, sometimes identified with the "Eastern
Souls", the 8 baboons who helped the sun to rise.

Onuris : the Distant Goddess he brought back to Egypt
as Mehit was Onuris' consort. Shu and Tefnut would
sometimes be identified with the sun and the moon, and
Mehit ("the completed one"), would be the
personification of the full moon. Onuris then becomes
the god who returned the lost lunar eye of Horus and
restored the cosmic balance.

Satet : her animal, the antelope, was renowned for its
ability to find water in the desert.

Seshat : in CT 84, she is said to be angry at a child
she gives birth to (just as later traditions made
Nephthys reject her son Anubis).

Sobek : as fish eater - many fishes were regarded as
creatures of chaos - Sobek was helping to establish
order.

Sokar, as chthonic deity, Sokar had to be appeased
when canals were dug, fildes were ploughed, or
underground tombs were built.

Sopdu : the Slaughter Yard of Sopdu was the place
where evil dead was butchered.

Thot : according to one account, Thot had to ask the
Distant Goddess to come home 1,077 times. He was given
Nehemtawy, a pacified version of the Goddess, as his
consort


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Huh!
PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2004 11:09 pm 
Tomb Robber
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Sorry, but I'm not gonna buy the whole thing about Neith creating the whole world and creating the 7 magic words. Ms. Pinch got that from a Roman era temple. That explains why it doesn't make any sense!


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 25, 2004 6:31 am 
Pharaoh
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Does any of their creation myth make sense? It is a myth, and for a civilisation that lasted for 5000 years I dont think any change in relgious meaning is particularly strange! Look at the different "denominations" (or sects) there are in christianity, and that is merely 1700 years old! If you check your history/mythology books you will realise that there are literally dozens of Egyptian creation myths and the rise of Hellenistic/Roman culture brought about new beleifs, new Gods and new ideas. How can you say it doesn't make sense when in fact it makes perfect sense. For goodness sake, how many creator Gods did the Egyptians have? I can think of at least 6 without even thinking properly! There are creator Gods for almost every major temple in Egypt! How can you say that beacause one version is different from all the other different versions it is wrong?


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 3:31 am 
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Sorry dear Maya, but you have to review all your knowledge about ancient egyptian gods! Neith has always been the most important goddess since old kingdom, creating the other gods and the human being....she does not belong to roman period.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 03, 2005 9:01 am 
peasant
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Sobek as a fish eater!
EEK!!! No wonder Isis couldn't find Osiris's phallis!
He ate it!

Does this make Sobek what he eats?
If vulgarity was allowed, I would answer.

Another reason as to "why" egyptian priest didn't eat fish!

YUK! I don't eat fish either!
That would be like eating a Pisces or feet. Stinky feet for that matter! Considering the astrology aspect of fish "Pisces and its meanings regarding man's faith, being the base for his religion. As the feet is what helps man to stand.

Which reminds me, Man as a fish I can't drown; but fish as a Man I can. A thought that came from an old dynastic goddess whom was known as Hat-Mehit, and her name means "She who is in front of all the fish". (Esna was an old cult of the gigantic Nile perch, late Niloticus).

Thanks for the info you've shared Osi. I found the sexually referances to be of great use for my research.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 03, 2005 9:11 am 
Pharaoh
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Have I eaten to much sugar or do I need to read that again? wtf? lol


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 03, 2005 9:55 am 
peasant
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Si-amun wrote:
Have I eaten to much sugar or do I need to read that again? wtf? lol



You haven't eaten enough I'd say!

I know the malice of Sobek is in reference of him being a D**K to begin with. Considering he symbolized the physical strength of the king, which is seen by other dieties having an erected phallis, maybe Sobek is perhaps a interpretation of the phallis, being a dick or dink in a ambivalent way?!


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 03, 2005 2:02 pm 
Pharaoh
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That is an interesting thoguht, I haven't really come across that ideology before. I ams still unsure how you get from the phallus of Osiris being eaten by a particular species of fish (abhorred by the Egyptians and thus not eaten) and Sobek, the crocodile son of Seth and Neith.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 03, 2005 5:42 pm 
peasant
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Si-amun wrote:
That is an interesting thoguht, I haven't really come across that ideology before. I ams still unsure how you get from the phallus of Osiris being eaten by a particular species of fish (abhorred by the Egyptians and thus not eaten) and Sobek, the crocodile son of Seth and Neith.


Hmmm, do you know of anything about the earliest "royal" mortuary cults and temples? These cults were based on perserving the single pharoah significant accomplishments and to be maintain after his death. But with each successor the "usurped" by changing the name, to divert all its divine benefits to the new pharaoh was always accuring by wilful destruction, recarving or any other alterations took place.

To explain at a partical level, man's strength was his "Phallis" and woman's magical power is held in what looks like the Hedjet crown called a clitorus.
When I'm finish writting my book of foot-notes, I'll explain then.
Till than I can say that Horus is guilty of FGM which is still in existance. Considering Set ruled the genitilia area and was in power at one time before Horus. How simple to see Isis representing the earth being the "throne" and to dethrone Set was to remove him from the land beginning with Isis being the body of the land and her magical power to be transferred to Horus which became the meaning of its shape the Hedjet known as Isis magical power. The transfer was probably the act or ritual of FGM. Considering to ancient egyptians, woman's "magical" power was contain in the genitilia area and by punishing the woman as a way to control her and a way to obtain her magical power. Reassuring Horus to take control of his mother diadem and made sure she stayed faithful to him and Osirius. Nevering having the pleasures of Set or the parts of the body he rules! And is passed on from one woman to another over the last past thousands of years! Known today as Pharonic Circumcision.


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PostPosted: Sun May 15, 2005 12:06 pm 
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The Edfu Texts circa 2500BC talk about some egg creation myth.


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PostPosted: Sun May 15, 2005 1:55 pm 
Pharaoh
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Heh! The Great Cackler- Geb!

NB. Doesn't this depend entirely on which creation myth you are studying? As far as I am aware there is not one single myth that was believed by all.


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PostPosted: Wed May 18, 2005 6:18 am 
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http://www.egyptianmyths.net/geb.htm
"The religious center of Geb seems to be Heliopolis (near Cairo), where he and Nut produced the Great Egg from which the Sun-god sprang."


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