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The Perennial Gospel: A Source Guide for Defending the Gospel of Our

Faith against the Heathen

2014 by D.N. Boswell

I believe in God,
The Father almighty,
Creator of heaven and earth,
And in the Qrst, His begotten son, our Lord,
Who was conceived by a holy spirit,
Born of a virgin meri,
Suffered under the pompous Typhon,
Was killed, crucified, and was buried;
On the third day he rose again from the dead;
He ascended into heaven,
And was seated at the hand of God the Father almighty;
He descended into hell;
From there he will judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the holy congregation,
The communion of saints,
The forgiveness of sins,
The resurrection of the body,
And life everlasting.

- Author unknown

Table of Contents
Faith under Fire....................................................8
Understanding Progressive Revelation ........................... 9
Concerning the Holy Scriptures of the Funerary Literature .... 18

Chapter 1: I Believe in God, the Father Almighty,

Creator of Heaven and Earth
Who Is God?...................................................... 37
God in Three Persons, Blessed Trinity .......................... 42
He that Hath Seen the Son Hath Seen the Father ............. 44
The Firstborn of All Creation ..................................... 48
Behold, a Virgin Shall Conceive ................................. 54
There is but One God, the Father, of Whom are All Things ... 73

Chapter 2: And in the Qrst, His Begotten

Son, our Lord
In the Beginning ................................................ 103
The Ennead..................................................... 113
King of Kings and Lord of Lords ............................... 117
God was Manifest in the Flesh ................................ 124
Is not this the Carpenters Son? ............................... 134

Chapter 3: Who was conceived by a Holy Spirit,

Born of a Virgin Meri
Like Father, like Son ........................................... 142
His Glory is like the Firstling of His Bullock ................... 146
The Firstling of a Cow They are Holy ....................... 161
Egypt is like a very Fair Heifer ................................. 164
....................................................... 175
Touch-Born ..................................................... 184
There shall the Vultures be Gathered ......................... 199

Chapter 4: Suffered under the evil Typhon, was

Killed, Crucified, and was Buried
And the Brother shall Deliver up the Brother to Death ....... 203

Seventy-Two.................................................... 208
Baptized into His Death ........................................ 209
And the Sun was Darkened.................................... 217
Thou Shalt Surely Die .......................................... 218
By this Time He Stinketh ....................................... 234
This is My Body, Which is Broken ............................. 240
This is My Blood ................................................ 261
..................... 274
This is My Body, Which is Given for You
He was Known of Them in Breaking of Bread ................ 284
He that Eateth My Flesh, and Drinketh My Blood,
Hath Eternal Life ............................................... 288
By the Blood of the Lamb ...................................... 294
Whom They Slew and Hanged on a Tree .................... 301
The Tree Grew, and Was Strong .............................. 303
She is a Tree of Life to Them that Lay Hold upon Her ....... 305
Hew Down the Tree, and Cut Off His Branches .............. 308
Take Up the Cross ............................................. 312
They Took Him Down from the Tree, and
Laid Him in a Sepulchre ....................................... 341
Chapter 5: On the Third Day He Rose
Again from the Dead
He was Buried, and that He Rose Again the Third Day ...... 346
The Moon shall be Darkened .................................. 353
They knew not the Scripture,
That He must Rise Again from the Dead ..................... 357
Bring up Flesh upon You, and Cover You with Skin,
and Put Breath in You, and Ye shall Live ..................... 366
I Shall Give Up the Ghost ...................................... 368
He Was Transfigured Before Them ........................... 405
He is Like unto a Man
Beholding his Natural Face in a Mirror ........................ 410
Handle Me and See; for a Spirit hath not Flesh and Bones,
as Ye See Me Have ............................................ 429
Ye are Risen with Him through the Faith of the Operation ... 467
Came Out of the Grave after His Resurrection,

and Went into the Holy City .................................... 478
That He May Depart from Hell Beneath ....................... 501

Chapter 6: He Ascended into Heaven

He Descended into Hell
He that Descended is the same also that Ascended ......... 507
Are there not Twelve Hours in the Day? ...................... 520
And in the Evening He Cometh with the Twelve ............. 524

Chapter 7: He will Judge the Living and the Dead

Thou art Weighed in the Balances ............................ 552
He that Judgeth Me is the Lord. ............................... 558
The Lake of Fire ................................................ 564
He shall Save His People from their Sins ..................... 568
The End of the World .......................................... 576

Chapter 8: The Bright and Morning Star

Even as We are One ........................................... 580
These also Doeth the Son likewise ........................... 582
In Winter shall It Be ............................................ 590
We have Seen His Star in the East ........................... 600
In the Reeds by the Rivers Bank ............................. 609
Ye must be Born Again ........................................ 612
How shall this Be, Seeing I Know not a Man? ................ 615
I may Present You as a Chaste Virgin ........................ 630
They Saw the Miracles which He Did ......................... 642
One King shall Be King to them All ............................ 647
Twelve Apostles ................................................ 657
He is Risen from the Dead ..................................... 662
The Lord hath Reigned from the Wood ....................... 673
My Flesh is Meat indeed, and My Blood is Drink indeed ..... 675
Summary ....................................................... 681

Chapter 9: I will Be Exalted among the Heathen

By my Name the Lord was I not Known to Them ............. 683
When the Feast of Bacchus was Kept ........................ 688
Behold Women Sat there Mourning for Adonis ............... 774
Let the Eunuch Say, Behold, I Am a Dry Tree ................ 820
The Sun Shineth in His Strength .............................. 858
Who Maketh Thee to Differ from Another? ...................942
Bibliography ................................................. 983
List of Illustrations ...................................... 1050

Faith under Fire

In these latter days of the age of grace, lawlessness and iniquity

abound, and in seemingly greater abundance than at any other time in
history. Our faith is being tested like never before, as we are being
attacked on all fronts by the blasphemy of unbelieving heathen. It seems
as though everywhere we turn we are bombarded by their persistent and
obstinate denial of the most foundational tenets of our faith as outlined in
the creed of the Perennial Gospel (see p. 4), including everything from
the virgin birth of Gods chosen son to his death & resurrection. Be it
laymen on the internet or revered scholars and university professors, we
are constantly met with skeptics from all walks of life and their incessant
demands for evidence from primary source material and support from
modern scholarship that affirms the tenets of our Lords Creed. In
particular, they have a fixation on demanding that the evidence either
pre-dates, or is at least no later than, the first century of the Common
Era. Some even go one step further than merely demanding the evidence,
and will go so far as to outright deny that such evidence even exists, in
spite of the abundance and ever increasing availability of such evidence
to the general public.
I have also observed, much to my disappointment, that in spite of
such abundant evidence and its increasing accessibility, defenders of the
tenets of the Perennial Gospel often fail to meet the demands of the
nonbelievers. This usually serves only to further assure the heathen of his
or her skepticism and blasphemy. Hence is the need for a work such as
this. My objective will be, as best I can, to meet the demands of the
heathen and to refute their errors, by providing and organizing all of the
evidence from primary sources and scholarly literature which I have
accumulated over the years in my personal research. However, before
diving into this evidence, it is necessary to cover some preliminary
concepts necessary for properly understanding the nature of some of the
evidence, and also for understanding why many of the contentions of the
heathen are in error.

Understanding Progressive Revelation

Unfortunately, it is not the case that God just handed down the creed
of His gospel to mankind directly from His own hand, in complete form
all at one and the same moment. It is also unfortunate that the
nonbelievers are apparently ignorant of that fact. Many of them seem to
expect that the revelation of the Lords gospel & creed came by way of
one single consolidated source that was written down at the beginning of
time, which remained perfectly preserved and was passed down in
exactly the same form from generation to generation on down until
today. The reality, however, is that, as is the case with all areas of
knowledge for mankind, the truth was realized progressively in stages
through out history. The collective knowledge that has come down to us
today passed through various locations and cultures, with each
generation building upon and refining the material left behind by the
previous generation, until finally the full revelation of Gods truth was
realized and perfected. This is what is meant here by progressive
This understanding of progressive revelation for all areas of
knowledge, be it math, science, or art, etc., is so obvious that theists of
many various faiths and religions have acknowledged it. As scientist and
Stanford University emeritus professor, Dr. Richard H. Bube, once
Progressive revelation means that God has given His revelation
of Himself to men in ever increasing clarity, fullness, specificity,
and detail, adopting at each stage of mans development that form
of the revelation and that content of the revelation which is the
most meaningful and the most useful. 1
Or as psychologist Dr. Ronan M. Kisch has observed:
It is based on a concept called progressive revelation. God
presents himself to man as man is able to understand God. It

Richard H. Bube, A Perspective on Scriptural Inerrancy, Journal of the
American Scientific Affiliation 15.3 (1963): 86-92.
started a long long time ago with tribal religion because the human
psyche could only understand God in those ways. 2
Thus the fact of progressive revelation is clearly evident, and
especially so for anyone familiar with the history of Gods chosen
people. The Lord unveiled His wisdom to His servants incrementally
throughout the centuries as necessary for each particular dispensation.
Further and more precise truths were given only as the peoples hearts
and minds became ready to receive it. In those dispensations of the past,
the Father winked at such ignorance, but now commands all people
everywhere to repent.
For the reader who might be unaware, there were indeed various
dispensations by which the history of Gods chosen people are now
almost universally categorized. The dispensational eras covered under
the time period most relevant to this current work are as follows:
The Predynastic Period c.5000-3100 BCE
The Early Dynastic Period c.3100-2686 BCE
The Old Kingdom c.2686-2181 BCE
The First Intermediate Period c.2181-2040 BCE
The Middle Kingdom c.2040-1795 BCE
The Second Intermediate Period c.1782-1550 BCE
The New Kingdom c.1550-1069 BCE
The Third Intermediate Period c.1069-656 BCE
The Late Period c.664-332 BCE
The Macedonian and
Ptolemaic Dynasties c.332-30 BCE
The Roman and
Byzantine Period c.30 BCE-639 CE3
Therefore, the primary source materials referred to in this book often
come from a wide variety of dates, locations, and cultures, and thus

Ronan M. Kisch, The Miraculous Achievements Of Bodywork: How Touch Can
Provide Healing For The Mind, Body, And Spirit (Bloomington: iUniverse, 2011),
Robert G. Morkot, Egypt: Land of the Pharaohs, (Hong Kong: Odyssey Books &
Guides, 1989-2005), 37-53.

many of the details contained in them also vary significantly. Sometimes
the differences are even logically irreconcilable with each other.
Progressive revelation therefore often requires the separating of wheat
from among the tares. Nevertheless, I assure you, there is an abundance
of wheat to be found. There are large areas of overlap among primary
sources. There is still a common thread running through the material
from all of these dispensational eras. I simply bring up the fact that
differences can be found in order to inform the reader and help avoid
confusion. The fact that differences exist is one of the major reasons for
the folly of the skeptics among the heathen. All too often I have
witnessed ill-informed antagonists citing only one version of a particular
story and prop it up as though it is the only version there ever was, and
thus in their mind anyone presenting an alternative version of the story
must be mistaken and repeating something that is false. The fact of the
matter is that the versions which will be presented in this book do exist
and are supported by primary source material and scholarly testimony,
and the existence of different versions does not negate the existence of
the ones that will be presented in support of the Perennial Gospel, nor
does it somehow invalidate them or make them non-canonical. Such
thinking is an anachronistic projection into the past, and such a
projection is unwarranted when dealing with the culture and mythology
of such a highly syncretistic population as that of the ancient
Mediterranean world. Differences and even logically irreconcilable
contradictions were not necessarily viewed as antithetical.
As historian Dr. Elizabeth Vandiver has stated in one of her lectures
on mythology:
First of all, lets think about literature. Even in as well
documented and well studied a society as classical Greece, the
written versions of myths involve several problems for a scholar of
myth. First of all, most obviously, written myths are frozen. By that
I mean that once a version of a myth is written down, its fixed,
there it is. And we, literate people, have a strong tendency to
assume that that means that version is somehow the myth, the real
myth, the only way the myth was ever told. But thats not how
traditional tales work, in any oral setting. If I asked every one of
you watching this lecture to tell me the story of Little Red Riding
Hood, I would get as many slightly different versions as there are
people watching this lecture. Thats how a living oral tradition

works. Once a story is written down, when our only access to it is
through writing, we tend to assume thats the real story.
I can give a clear example of what I mean by this. Everyone
knows the story of Oedipus the King, how he killed his father,
married his mother, without knowing who they were. When he
discovered the terrible thing that he had done, after his mother
hanged herself, Oedipus blinded himself, went into exile, never
returned home to Thebes again, right?
Well, right according to Sophocles, who wrote the play
Oedipus the King. In Homer, in The Odyssey, theres a very brief
reference to Oedipus which agrees that, yes, he killed his father
and married his mother. Yes, his mother killed herself after the
truth came out, but Oedipus, says Homer, continued to rule in
Thebes many years thereafter.
Which is the real version of the Oedipus myth?
They both are.
Sophocles version dominates our understanding of the myth
because it is such a marvelous play, and because its so famous.
And this is the kind of thing we have to guard against. Often we
have only one version of a myth. We have to remember there
probably were others.4
So ancient peoples (here specifically, the Greeks) apparently did not
have a dichotomy of either right or wrong when it came to variations in
mythology. Both versions of the Oedipus tale are considered the real
version. Thus it would be unjustified to prop up one version to the
exclusion of the other as though the other either did not exist or was
somehow invalid or does not count. Vandiver goes on to state:
Another problem is that only a fraction of ancient Greek
literature has survived. Most of what was written is now lost, and
often the things that survived do not tell us what we would
particularly like to know. They werent written for us, so they dont
give us the details that would be most helpful to us. One book we
will use a great deal in this course is called The Library of Greek
Mythology. It was written by a man named Apollodorus, about
whom we know absolutely nothing except that he wrote this book.
He lived in the first or second century AD, probably, and he
compiled brief summaries of all the myths he knew at a time when

Elizabeth Vandiver, Classical Mythology (Chantilly: The Teaching Company
LLC, 2000), Lecture 1. (Emph. added.)
some of those myths were starting to fragment or be forgotten. So
thats very useful for us. Well use Apollodorus as a sourcebook,
but even there we have to remember that hes giving usually only
one or at most two versions of myths, and that there may have been
myths he chose not to recount or didnt know, and there may have
been other versions of the ones he did recount. So much for
Later, Dr. Vandiver concludes:
So where does this leave us? Is this a hopeless endeavor?
Should we just give up at this point and say theres no way to study
classical mythology? Obviously, I dont think so, but I think we
need to bear these difficulties in mind as we start our survey of
classical mythology. We need to remember that we are studying
only particular variants of the myths. Sometimes we can reconstruct
a fairly full version of how the myth must have operated in its
original society when we have all sorts of variants to work from.
Other times we cant. Other times well have only one version of a
myth and no others. Some references remain tantalizingly obscure.
Sometimes we really just dont know what a characters name or
what a snippet of a story refers to.
Occasionally a work of art preserves what is clearly a very
different version from the only ones known to us by literature.
Theres a beautiful classical Greek painting, vase painting, of a
character who is quite clearly Jason, Jason who got the golden
fleece after his voyage on the Argo. The golden fleece is there on a
tree behind Jason; the tree is guarded by a dragon. All of these
elements point to the fact that this is very clearly Jason, and yet in
this painting the dragon is either swallowing Jason or spitting him
back out again. Jason is halfway out of the dragons mouth. His
arms and head are visible outside the dragons mouth.
In no written version of Jasons story that has survived for us
does the dragon eat Jason, or attempt to eat Jason. The whole point
is that Jason is helped by Medea, who gives him magic potion so
that he can overcome the dragon without being eaten. If this vase
painting had not survived, we would not know that there had ever
been a variant in which Jason was eaten by the dragon. Because we
have the painting, we know this variant existed, but thats all we
know about it. We have no written description of that version of
Jasons story.5
To make this point more relevant specifically to Gods chosen
people of Kemet, we have the following statements from Egyptologist

Dr. Joann Fletcher, in her book Exploring the Life, Myth, and Art of
Ancient Egypt:
Egyptian religion was highly complex and involved the
worship of the many gods and goddesses whose painted, incised,
and sculpted images can still be seen today adorning tombs and
temples and a great range of everyday artifacts. It was above all,
except during the Amarna period, a tolerant, all-encompassing
belief system, which was able to embrace apparently contradictory
myths and legends. Every story about the gods had its local
variations, but each was regarded as no less valid than the next.
Even such a fundamental myth as the story of the creation of the
world came in three strikingly differentbut equally accepted
Further corroborating with that is the following from Egyptologist
Edmund S. Meltzer, in the entry for Horus in The Oxford Encyclopedia
of Ancient Egypt, Vol. 2:
The roles, local cult foundations, and titles or epithets of
Horus are sometimes correlated with distinct or preferred forms in
iconography: for example the falcon, the falcon-headed man, the
winged disk, and the child with a sidelock (sometimes in his
mothers arms). Egyptologists therefore often speak of distinct,
sometimes originally distinct, Horuses or Horus-gods.
Combinations, identifications, and differentiations were, however,
possible for Horus, and they are complimentary rather than
antithetical. A judicious examination of the various Horuses and
the sources relating to them supports the possibility that the roles in
question are closely interrelated, and so they may be understood as
different aspects, or facets, of the same divine persona.7
Dr. John G. Griffiths also comments:
The proliferation of Horus-forms, for instance, is a complexity
which arises, as far as cult is concerned, from the identification of
various falcon-gods with the original Horus-falcon who was
associated with the King.8

Joann Fletcher, Exploring the Life, Myth, and Art of Ancient Egypt, (New York:
The Rosen Publishing Group, Inc., 2010), 37.
Edmund S. Meltzer, Horus, in The Oxford Encyclopedia of Ancient Egypt, ed.
D.B. Redford, Vol. 2 (New York: Oxford University Press, Inc., 2001), 119.
John G. Griffiths, The Origins of Osiris and His Cult (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1980), 17.
(Emph. added.)
As for the following final quotation concerning this point, it should
be noted that, due to the date of publication (1918), the book wherein it is
contained is now considered out-dated as far as academic value is
concerned. However, this specific quotation is being included here
because I think that it sums up this point the most explicitly. It is from
Dr. Wilhelm Max Mller, in the 12th volume of The Mythology of all
As for the kaleidoscopic character of the mythology, there
never was a rationalizing wish to change it. We children of an over-
rationalistic age too easily forget that most mythologies once had
this indistinctness of character and that to the ancient mind it was
not a disadvantage, but a beauty . In like manner the Egyptians,
proud of the wealth of fanciful variants which distinguished their
mythology above those of all the neighboring countries were careful
not to correct this mystic confusion , which we find so bewildering.
Even in Plutarchs systemizing account of the Osiris-myth we see
how seldom the necessity of harmonizing contradictory variants was
So, to summarize again: scholars acknowledge that many variations
of myths exist, even some with logically irreconcilable contradictions,
yet no one particular variant was considered more canonical than the
others. The ancient Egyptians did not see this as a problem demanding a
resolution. It almost seems as though even back then they were aware on
some level, even if only subconsciously, of the principle of progressive
revelation. Thus they were open to receiving variants from other
locations which might contain certain truths that the traditions of their
own location did not, and vice-versa. Also, if even the Egyptians
themselves did not utilize only one variant exclusively and deny all of
the others, then it is wrong for anyone today to try and do so, as we see
many among the heathen attempt to do.
Although, I have witnessed some antagonistic heathen going to the
opposite extreme and accuse their opponents of taking advantage of the
availability of so many variations of certain myths, picking and choosing
from one or another as they please, in order to present a custom made
version of characters such as Horus or others. Yet, as Dr. Meltzer stated

W. Max Mller, Development and Propagation of Egyptian Religion, in The
Mythology of all Races Vol. XII, eds. L.H. Gray and G.F. Moore (Boston: Marshall
Jones Co., 1918), 216-17.
in the afore-cited quotation, the Egyptians themselves often took
originally distinct versions of Horus and subjected them to various
combinations and identifications. So actually, that is exactly what
they did; they picked and chose from different versions and combined
them to make new custom versions. Ancient peoples clearly had no
problem playing Mr. Potato Head with their gods and mythical figures.
For example, this is how gods such as the Hellenized Serapis evolved.
The Ptolemies, so the story goes10, essentially picked & chose aspects of
Egyptian gods such as Osirisas the Apis (Osorapis)11and Greek gods
such as Hades, et al., and combined them to form what can be considered
a new version of each.12 So while Serapis can be correctly said to be a
distinct god with his own cult, at the same time it is equally correct that
the people of the Hellenistic Era still identified Serapis with his original
source gods such as Osiris and Hades.13
Osiris has been given the name Sarapis by some and some
say that Sarapis is the god whom the Greeks call Pluto.
Diodorus of Sicily, Library of History 1.25.2 (1st cen. BCE.) 14
In fact, men assert that Pluto is none other than Serapis and
that Persephone is Isis, even as Archemachus of Euboea has said,
and also Heracleides Ponticus who hold the oracle in Canopus to
be an oracle of Pluto. It is better to identify Osiris with Dionysus
and Serapis with Osiris, who received this appellation at the time
when he changed his nature.
Plutarch, Moralia 361F, 362E (1st cen. CE15) 16

Stefan Pfeiffer, The God Serapis, His Cult and The Beginnings of the Ruler
Cult in Ptolemaic Egypt, in Ptolemy II Philadelphus and his World, eds. P.
McKechnie and P. Guillaume (Leiden: Koninklijke Brill NV, 2008), 387-408.
Ibid. 389-90.
Ibid. 392-93, 407.
R. G. Morkot, The Egyptians: An Introduction (New York: Routledge, 2005), 55.
Pfeiffer (2008), 391-92.
Diodorus of Sicily, Library of History, in Diodorus Siculus: Library of History,
Books 1-2.34, trans. C.H. Oldfather (London: William Heinemann Ltd., and
Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1933-67), 79.
Matthew Bunson, Encyclopedia of the Roman Empire, Revised Edition (New
York: Facts On File, Inc., 1994-2002), 437.
It is worth pointing out that Plutarch cited Archemachus and
Heraclides as his sources; the former being dated to 3rd cen. BCE, and the
latter being dated to the fourth. Therefore, even as early as the 4th cen.
BCE, Serapis was simultaneously distinct from, yet also identical with,
the source gods from which he was derived.17 Such is also the case for
Mercurius Ter Maximus, a very popular god during the Roman era who
was a combination of older gods such as Hermes, Asclepius, Thoth,
Anubis, etc.18 This is akin to how a certain popular shepherd god from
the Levant, henceforth referred to as The Good Shepherd,19 was
considered both a distinct entity and yet also the same entity as other
heathen deities of the Fertile Crescent such as Eloh, 20 Yaho,21 and
Elyon,22 or even Greek deities such as Logos23 and Zeus,24 etc.

David Furley, Cosmology, in The Cambridge History of Hellenistic Philosophy,

eds. K. Algra et al. (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999-2002), 433.
Gary B. Miles, Livy: Reconstructing Early Rome (Ithaca: Cornell University Press,
1996), 105.
Beverley C. Southgate, History: What and Why? Ancient. Modern, and
Postmodern Perspectives (London: Routledge, 1996-2001), 40.
Gillian Vogelsang-Eastwood, Textiles, in Ancient Egyptian Materials and
Technology, eds. P.T. Nicholson and I. Shaw (Cambridge: Cambridge Univesity
Press, 2000-06), 269.
Plutarch, Moralia, in Plutarchs Moralia: Volume V, trans. F.C. Babbitt,
(London: William Heinemann Ltd., and Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University
Press, 1936-62), 67. (Emphasis added.)
John E. Stambaugh, Sarapis Under the Early Ptolemies, (Leiden: E.J. Brill,
1972), 1, 4, 10, 29. 34.
Reginald E. Witt, Isis in the Ancient World (Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins
University Press, 1971-97), 208.
Cf. Book of the Dead, Spell 142 S 2.
Recall The Good Shepherds famous cry to Eloh during his crucifixion- Eloh,
Eloh, lama sabachthani.
"I and my Father are one. ... Thou, being a man, makest thyself God."
"He that hath seen me hath seen the Father ... I am in the Father, and the
Father in me."
Yaho is my strength and song, and is become my salvation.
They remembered that Elyon was their redeemer.
In the beginning was Logos, and Logos was with God, and Logos was God.
And Logos was made flesh, and dwelt among us.
Thus Serapis stands as one of the more shining examples, among
many, which demonstrates this point that ancient peoples, especially the
Egyptians and Greeks, were known to select different aspects from
various myths & traditions and merge them to form new custom
versions. Like an all-you-can-eat buffet, everything on the table was
available for them to choose from, regardless of how many options there
were or how much those options differed from each other. Likewise,
such a buffet was also available for much later cultures to choose from to
form their own custom traditions as well, such as (just to throw out a
completely random example) the traditions revolving around The Good
Shepherd. Such a highly syncretistic environment was perfect for
allowing a natural flow of progressive revelation throughout the various
dispensations, which would ultimately lead to the realization of the
complete creed of the Perennial Gospel.

Concerning the Holy Scriptures of the Funerary Literature

The next preliminary concept necessary for understanding the nature

of some of the evidence that will be presented in this book concerns the
holy scriptures of the funerary literature as primary sources for ancient
Egyptian mythology, and especially for the mythology of the god Osiris.
In particular, the main three sources I will be drawing from most often
will be the big three, the three most famous collections within the
corpus of the funerary literature- and they are the Pyramid Texts, the
Coffin Texts, and the Book of the Dead.25
The Pyramid Texts date to the Old Kingdom, beginning in the latter
Fifth Dynasty with Pharaoh Unas, who reigned from around 2375-45
BCE26 (although some authorities place him at around 2353-23 BCE27).

For in him (Zeus) we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of
your own poets have said, For we are also his (Zeus) offspring.
A. Rosalie David, The Experience of Ancient Egypt (New York: Routledge,
2000), 43-44.
Lorna Oakes and Lucia Gahlin, Ancient Egypt: An Illustrated Reference to the
Myths, Religions, Pyramids and Temples of the Land of the Pharaohs (London:
Anness Publishing Ltd, 2002-05), 400.
They are the oldest extant religious writings from Ancient Egypt, and
interestingly enough, they are also the best preserved.28 The Pyramid
Texts were a series of magical spells, rituals, hymns, prayers, etc., that
were inscribed on the walls of the pyramids of some deceased kings
during the late Old Kingdom and on into the First Intermediate Period,
and their intended function was to ensure a kings bodily resurrection and
then his safe passage to the Egyptian netherworld.29
The purpose of these royal texts then was to guarantee the
deceased kings resurrection and new birth, his transfiguration and
divinity, his successful journey to heaven, and his immortality there
with other gods.
Dr. Samuel A.B. Mercer, The Pyramid Texts in Translation and
Commentary, Vol. 1 30
While they are relatively complex, the primary mechanism by which
the texts were thought to achieve their purpose was that of identification
of the deceased king with the god Osiris. By becoming one with Osiris,
the kings were then believed to have shared in Osiris power.
The first, the Pyramid Texts, are texts found inscribed on the
walls of pyramids from the Old Kingdom (2686-2125 BCE). The
inscriptions include instructions to guide the dead king to the
afterlife, and magic spells to assist and protect him. In the afterlife
the king will share the role of Osiris , who ruled over the kingdom
of the dead.
Dr. Glenn S. Holland, Gods in the Desert: Religions of the
Ancient Near East 31

James P. Allen, The Ancient Egyptian Pyramid Texts (Atlanta: Society of
Biblical Literature, 2005), 15.
Raymond O. Faulkner, The Ancient Egyptian Pyramid Texts (London: Oxford
University Press, 1969), v.
A. Rosalie David, The Ancient Egyptians: Beliefs and Practices (Brighton:
Sussex Academic Press, 1998), 106-07.
A. Rosalie David, Pyramid Builders of Ancient Egypt: A Modern Investigation of
Pharaohs Workforce (London: Routledge, 1986-96), 33-34.
Bob Brier and A. Hoyt Hobbs, Daily Life of the Ancient Egyptians (Westport:
Greenwood Press, 2008), 45.
Morkot (1989-2005), 139.
Samuel A.B. Mercer, The Pyramid Texts in Translation and Commentary, Vol.
1 (New York: Longmans, Green and Co., 1952), 3.
First, since the deceased had become one with Osiris, he or
she would have some of the power of the gods.
Patricia Remler,32 Egyptian Mythology: A to Z 33
In the Pyramid Texts, the dead king is frequently identified
with Osiris or his stellar counterpart, Sah (Orion).
Dr. Geraldine Pinch, Egyptian Mythology: A Guide to the
Gods, Goddesses, and Traditions of Ancient Egypt 34
In the latter part of the Old Kingdom the deceased king
became identified with Osiris, a god of the dead standing in a
special relationship to the kingship.
Dr. Barry J. Kemp, in Ancient Egypt: A Social History 35
The king identified himself at death with Osiris , and his heir
became Horus, the son and avenger of Osiris.
Dr. Ann Rosalie David, The Ancient Egyptians: Beliefs and
Practices 36
Each successive pharaoh was Horus in life and became one
with Osiris in death.
Dr. Walter M. Ellis, Ptolemy of Egypt 37
The ideology of kingship not only encompasses the world of
the living but also gives the king a critical function beyond the
grave: the living king is the embodiment of Horus and rules the
living; the deceased king is Osiris, king of the dead .
Dr. Ian Shaw, The Oxford History of Ancient Egypt 38

Glenn S. Holland, Gods in the Desert: Religions of the Ancient Near East
(Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc., 2009), 66. (Emph. added.)
Far Horizons Archaeological and Cultural Trips Inc., Our Scholars, (accessed April 17, 2013).
Patricia Remler, Egyptian Mythology: A to Z (New York: Chelsea House, 2000-
10), 109. (Emph. added.)
Geraldine Pinch, Egyptian Mythology: A Guide to the Gods, Goddesses, and
Traditions of Ancient Egypt (New York: Oxford University Press, 2002-04), 178.
(Emph. added.)
Barry J. Kemp, Old Kingdom, Middle Kingdom and Second Intermediate
Period c. 2686-1552 BC, in Ancient Egypt: A Social History, eds. B.G. Trigger et
al., (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1983-2001), 72. (Emph. added.)
David (1998), 76. (Emph. added.)
Walter M. Ellis, Ptolemy of Egypt (London: Routledge, 1994-2005), 28. (Emph.
His renewed life is indeed the theme of numerous allusions,
and they are often related to the dead King who assumes the
blessings experienced by Osiris through direct identification with
the god. ... Osiris was certainly identified with the dead Pharaoh ...
That idea is most effectively explained by seeing him as a king of
the dead with whom the dead Pharaoh was equated.
Dr. John G. Griffiths, The Origins of Osiris and His Cult 39
An interchange of purely Osirian and general funerary usage
is, at the same time, natural, since the deceased was identified with
Dr. John G. Griffiths, Apuleius of Madauron: The Isis-Book
(Metamorphosis, Book XI) 40
The identification of the dead with Osiris even goes so far that
finally the name of the God becomes a common indication, a title
of each person deceased. 'Osiris N.N.' is the deceased who
possesses the power of resurrection which Osiris has. The mystery
of eternal life is identical for men and gods in every respect.
Dr. Jan Zandee, Death as an Enemy: According to Ancient
Egyptian Conceptions 41
Now to bring this point back around specifically to the holy
scriptures of the funerary literature such as the Pyramid Texts, Dr.
Harold M. Hays writes:
There is no doubt but that, in the Old and Middle Kingdoms,
the dead expected to assume the role of Osiris . This is clear from
sacerdotal and personal texts alike, in both Pyramid and Coffin
Texts, where the text owner is several times identified as this god by
statements of a predicative kind. The predicative statements are not
susceptible to reinterpretation of ambiguous grammatical syntax.
(And, conversely, there are no statements to corroborate a genitival
interpretation, nor would there be for another twelve centuries.) In

Ian Shaw, The Oxford History of Ancient Egypt (Oxford: Oxford University
Press, 2000-03), 371. (Emph. added.)
Griffiths (1980), 2, 4.
John G. Griffiths, Apuleius of Madauron: The Isis-Book (Metamorphosis, Book
XI) (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1975), 316-17.
Jan Zandee, Death as an Enemy: According to Ancient Egyptian Conceptions,
trans. W.F. Klasens (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1960), 7.
short, the predicative statements, along with other details, indicate
that the formula was appositival at its advent .42
As stated previously, having become one with Osiris, the dead
acquired the divine powers of the god as well. This would, by default,
include the power to resurrect the flesh, since Osiris, as the first to bodily
return from the dead, was the primary god of resurrection and afterlife.
Therefore, like Osiris, these deceased kings also rose from the dead and
were raptured away to Osiris kingdom where they live & reign with him
for all of eternity. This was accomplished by placing the deceased in the
role of Osiris and then reciting & re-enacting the myths of Osiris
In his essay Saviour and Judge: Two Examples of Divine
Ambivalence, religious scholar Reverend Samuel G.F. Brandon
We shall begin our enquiry by investigating the Egyptian
evidence, which incidentally comprises some of the earliest
religious texts that have been preserved to our time. These are the
Pyramid Texts, which were inscribed on the interior walls of the
pyramid-tombs of certain pharaohs of the Fifth and Sixth Dynasties
(c. 2425-2300 B.C.), for the purpose of facilitating the passage of
the dead kings to the next world. In these texts Osiris appears as
the focal figure in a complex mortuary ritual designed to save the
deceased from the physical disintegration of death and to raise
them to a new life. This salvation was achieved by a technique of
ritual assimilation whereby the dead kings were identified with
Osiris in terms of a mythos which told of the death and
resurrection of Osiris at some undefined time in the past. The
origin of this mythos has been the subject of much scholarly
discussion, which is likely to remain inconclusive in view of the
nature of the extant evidence. But what is certain is that Osiris was
believed to provide, by virtue of his own resurrection, the means or
opportunity for others to obtain immunity from the dread
consequences of death and enjoy immortal life. In this ritual
process of vicarious salvation Osiris appears to play a passive role.43

Harold M. Hays, The Organization of the Pyramid Texts: Typology and
Disposition, Vol. 1 (Leiden: Koninklijke Brill NV, 2012), 168. (Emph. added.)
Samuel G.F. Brandon, Saviour and Judge: Two Examples of Divine
Ambivalence, Liber Amicorum: Studies in Honour of Professor Dr. C.J. Bleeker,
ed. C.J. Bleeker (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1969), 44-45. (Emph. added.)
Elsewhere, the late professor stated:
This ritual technique of salvation was an amalgam of two
processes: a process of chemical embalmment designed to prevent
or arrest the physical decomposition of the corpse; and a ritual
process based on the principle of sympathetic magic , reinforced by
invocations for divine assistance. The rationale of this complex of
practical and ritual action was the mythos of Osiris, which both
authorized and explained the faith and practice involved.44
Further down, Brandon continued:
Further on in the liturgy, although he remains a passive agent
in the achievement of the pharaohs resurrection, Osiris is
requested to direct his attention to Unasthe request appears as a
kind of afterthought, suddenly felt to be necessary since Osiris,
though passive, is the pivotal agent of the transaction . Then, as if to
leave nothing uncertain, Osiris is reminded of the implication of
the assimilation of the dead Unas to himself:
In the royal mortuary ritual, preserved on the Pyramid Texts,
Osiris thus appears as the focal figure in a soteriological scheme
calculated to save the dead king from the consequences of death,
and to endow him with immortality. Osiris may, accordingly, be
described as a passive Saviour. His death and resurrection invested
him, as it were, with the power to communicate a like resurrection
to one ritually assimilated to him.
Osiris gradually became the savior of all who could afford to
be buried with at least the minimum requirements of the Osirian
obsequies. The original pattern of ritual assimilation of the
deceased to Osiris continued, becoming so fundamental a concept
that in the funerary literature the dead person was automatically
designated Osiris so-and-so.
In the extant literature Osiris appears suddenly to acquire the
role of the awful post-mortem judge, and he exercises it while still
remaining the savior he had originally been, through assimilation
with whom the dead are resurrected to a new eternal life.
There are no references to Osiris as the post-mortem judge;
but in the Pyramid Texts he does appear to play the passive role of
the prototype of the innocent one, unjustly accused, who is
vindicated after death by a divine tribunal, after the manner of his
passive role of prototype of the resurrected dead. Once more the
rationale is provided by the Osirian mythos.45

Ibid. 46. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 46-49. (Emph. added.)
In a separate essay, Brandon again reiterated the point:
As we have already noted, the salvation which Osiris afforded
to his devotees was salvation from death and its consequences , and
this situation has to be taken quite literally. As the mythos of Osiris
told how the physical decomposition of his corpse had been
reversed and he had been revivified physically, so was a like
restoration looked for by his devotees. This restoration, in a
practical manner, was achieved by the Egyptian ritual of
embalmment. The ritual was patterned upon what was believed to
have been done originally by Isis and Nephthys and other deities
such as Anubis and Horus, for Osiris, in order to preserve his body
and raise him from the dead. In fact, the whole mortuary ritual was
presented as a re-enactment of the transactions that secured the
resurrection of Osiris, and in this re-enactment the deceased was
ritually identified with, or assimilated to, Osiris . In other words, the
principle of the Osirian ritual technique of salvation was that of
sympathetic magic.
How far any doctrine of intention was involved here, either on
the part of the dead or of the officiant of the rite is unknown. It is
more likely that the efficacy of the ritual was imagined, in so far as
there was conscious thinking about the matter, as functioning ex
opera operato, i.e. by virtue of its actual performance. However,
since reference is continually made to Osiris, and either he, or
Atum-Re, or other deities are invoked in the utterances, we may
safely conclude that the Egyptians believed that the saving efficacy
of this Osirian mortuary ritual ultimately stemmed from the divine
savior himself, whose primordial experience made such salvation
To return again to Mercer concerning the Pyramid Texts:
And while there are clearly three outstanding elements in
them, namely, solar theology, religion and myths of Osiris, and the
political unification of Upper and Lower Egypt, yet the following
seven points may be taken to represent the whole collection with
fair general accuracy: 1) A funerary ritual of mortuary offerings,
connected with the corporeal reconstitution and resurrection of the
deceased king, 2) Magical formulae to ward against harm and evil,
3) A ritual of worship, 4) religious hymns, 5) Mythical formulae,
identifying the deceased king with certain deities , 6) Prayers and

Samuel G.F. Brandon, Redemption in Ancient Egypt, in Types of
Redemption: Contributions to the Theme of the Study-Conference held at
Jerusalem, 14th to 19th July, 1968, ed. C.J. Bleeker and R.J.Z. Werblowsky
(Supplements to Numen 18; Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1970), 39. (Emph. added.)
petitions on behalf of the deceased king, and 7) The greatness and
power of the deceased king in heaven.47
So the point is madein these funerary texts, the deceased is ritually
identified with Osiris by vicariously fulfilling the role of Osiris in
retelling and re-enacting the myths of Osiris, and hence, these texts do
indeed serve as primary sources for the mythology of Osiris. As in the
previous comment by Rev. Brandon, this was part of the principle of
sympathetic magic. Egyptologist Dr. Bob Brier elaborates:
This was sympathetic magic in which the deceased was
associated with Osiris. By sympathetic magic, the figure took the
place of the person it represented.48
Magic is an important key to properly understanding the nature of
Egyptian resurrection as well as the nature of the gods. It will come up
again later throughout this book. One of the primary components by
which magic operated in ancient Egyptian culture was via the spoken
word. As Brier also points out:
Three elements are essential to the magical act: the spell, the
ritual, and the magician. The spell is what must be said for the act
to have its desired effect. It may be crucial that the words be uttered
properly, with a certain intonation. To the ancient Egyptian, words
were extremely powerful: The word was the deed; saying
something was so made it so.49
Elsewhere he wrote:
Our earliest known writings about resurrection were found on
the walls of the royal pyramid of Unas, the last king of the Fifth
Dynasty, and include hundreds of magical inscriptions in vertical
lines running from ceiling to floor. These hieroglyphic
utterances, referred to as the Pyramid Texts, detail the three
stages of a pharaohs transition to the next world: The principle
behind all the spells is the same: the word is deed. Saying
something, or having it inscribed on a pyramid wall, made it so. 50
Dr. Robert. K. Ritner likewise affirms:

Mercer (1952), 2. (Emph. added.)
Bob Brier, Ancient Egyptian Magic (New York: Quill, 1980-2001), 86, 169.
Ibid. 11. (Emph. added.)
Brier and Hobbs (2008), 42.
In the Metternich Stela, Isis conjoins the terms in what may
allude to the best explanation of their ultimate relationship:
ink As.t ntr.t nb(.t) HkAir HkA Ax Dd mnx mdw
I am Isis the goddess, the possessor of magic, who performs
magic, effective of speech, excellent of words.
Expressing the notion of effectiveness, Ax serves as an
attribute of magical speech; as the noun Axw, it embodies that
attribute in a literary synonym for the basic term HkA. The quality of
effectiveness is thus seen as fundamental to magic, and the
equation is often emphasized by textual statements that spells,
amulets, and rites are Ax-effective for the one who does them.
The preceding statement of Isis is also of value for its clear
declaration of the tripartite nature of magic, being viewed as an
inherent quality or property to be possessed, an activity or rite to
be performed, and as words or spells to be spoken.
Interestingly, to each of these aspects corresponds an element in
the Egyptian creation myths: the spoken evocation of the cosmos,
the physical separation of heaven and earth, and the origin of man
as the tears of the sun god. The intrinsic association of magic and
word is noted above, and lies at the heart of modern Egyptologys
obsession with the spell as the sine qua non of magic. This almost
exclusive interest in the spoken and written spell is quite
understandable in view of the many Egyptian statements which also
stress this aspect of HkA.51
To include a primary source, there is Coffin Text Spell 298 IV, 51:
A god says what he desires, and coming into being is brought about by
it.52 So in ancient Egypt, saying that something was so made it so. In
other words, the gods and magicians could calleth those things which be
not as though they were, even to the point of quickening the dead.
Hence the declarations repeated throughout the funerary texts such as
Rise up, O King, for you have not died.53 Verbally denying death
rebuked death and thus made the king alive again, just like Osiris. And
therefore one can see now why the procedure was necessary, within these

Robert K. Ritner, Mechanics of Ancient Egyptian Magical Practice (Chicago:
University of Chicago Press, 1993-2008), 34-35.
Raymond O. Faulkner, The Ancient Egyptian Coffin Texts, Vol. I (Warminster:
Aris & Phillips, Ltd, 1973), 221. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1969), 124 (Utt. 373 657).
funerary spells & rituals, to repeat the mythological narratives of Osiris
with the deceased in the place of Osiris. Verbally calling the deceased
Osiris is what made it so and therefore passed on the attributes of
Osiris onto the deceased, the most important of which were bodily
resurrection and eternal life.
Explaining all of this is necessary in order to avoid confusion when
citing these funerary texts as primary sources for the mythology of
Osiris. For, no doubt, some people who read this book will wish to check
the references, such as the Pyramid Texts, for example. When doing so,
if some should end up using a version such as that of James P. Allen
(which retains the names of the deceased), they will find that for some of
the utterances cited the fuller context uses the name Unas, or Pepi, or
Teti, etc., instead of just explicitly Osiris. Therefore, no doubt, such
readers might become confused and perhaps even claim that such a
passage is not about Osiris and thus is being misquoted and cannot be
used as a source for the Osirian mythos. However, the scholarly citations
already given h previously have demonstrated beyond dispute that in
such passages the deceased is being used in the place of Osiris in order to
gain his power. Although, even without such scholarly explanations,
simply reading the texts from beginning to end will make it abundantly
clear that such is the case, for many of the attributes mentioned in such
passages are attributes primarily, or even exclusively, identified with
Osiris himself. Such texts include those which refer to the deceased in
the following ways (as per Dr. R.O. Faulkner,54 emphasis added):
as the brother of Isis and Nephthys,
O King, I have given to you your sister Isis, P.T. Utterance 4,
O King, I have given to you your sister Nephthys, Utt. 5;
as the father of Horus,
O King, I am your son, I am Horus, Utt. 106 69;
as the firstborn son of Nut,
The King is my eldest son who split open my womb,
Utt. 1 1;
as rent to pieces by Seth,
O King, Isis has reassembled you, it is Horus who will
make good what Seth has done to you, Utt. 357 590, 592;

Faulkner (1969).
or as the king of the netherworld,
May you arise, O King, protected and provided as a god,
equipped with the form of Osiris upon the throne of the
Foremost of the Westerners (the Egyptians having believed that
the primary entrance to the netherworld was in the West where
the sun set), Utt. 421 759.
Moreover, if one simply reads all of the texts, one will inevitably
come across the passages (and notes, etc.) in which the deceased is
explicitly identified as Osiris himself (also per Faulkner, emphasis
The King is Osiris in a dust-devil, Utt. 258 308,
Utt. 259 312;
This King is Osiris, whom [Nut] bore, Utt. 650 1833;
Behold, the King is at the head of the gods and is provided as a
god, his bones are knit together as Osiris, Utt. 687 2076-77;
The king as Osiris is adjured to join his son and protector
Horus, Utt. 214, n.3;
The king takes over the role of Osiris as king of the dead, Utt.
218, n.5;
The king is identified with Osiris, Utt. 219, title;
Osiris and the king are associated, Utt. 577, title;
Osiris=the King, Osiris=the dead king, Utt. 670, n.13, n.21.
The same can also be seen in the Coffin Texts of the Middle
Kingdom, which descend from the Pyramid Texts,55 as well as in The
Book of the Dead of the New Kingdom, which descends from both.56
One brief example being Coffin Text Spell 227:
am Osiris, I indeed am the Lord of All, I am the Radiant One, the
brother of the Radiant Lady; I am Osiris, the brother of Isis. My
son Horus and his mother Isis have protected me from that foe
who would harm me; they have put cords on his arms and fetters

Oakes (2002-05), 402.
Ibid. 404.
on his thighs because of what he has done to me. I indeed am
Dr. Thomas G. Allen states the following in regards to the Book of
the Dead:
To insure application to the person for whom it was intended,
each spell had to contain the beneficiarys name. This was usually
preceded by Osiris, the name of the god of the dead with whom
the deceased person had already tended to become identified in
the Coffin Texts. The beneficiary was usually further defined by
parentage, titles, or both.58
Therefore, one should not become confused by references to the
deceased within these scriptures. This does not detract from the fact that
they do indeed tell the tales of Osiris. However, readers shouldnt let this
fact convolute their understanding into yet more confusion when they
encounter passages that refer to the deceased as still distinct from Osiris.
This likewise does not detract from the fact that the deceased is playing
the role of Osiris in these texts. Dr. Hays clarifies:
But above all the text owner is identified as the god Osiris . It is
important to consider their relationship because, as has been
indicated, some sacerdotal texts in their prior forms were personal
services to a deity, composed so as to be performed by the text
owner. Thus in some texts the text owner is found as Osiris , and in
others one may expect him to interact with Osiris as an entity
separate from him, as was also seen in the Book of the Dead.
Alongside the statements of identity and the appositival
formula Osiris NN, in the Pyramid Texts the name wsir Osiris
often stands as an entity separate from the text owner. The tension
between identity and distinction created a fluid situation,
contributing to the role transplantation of PT 477 discussed above.
It was mentioned that there are other texts exhibiting this kind of
transformation, where the text owner as officiant is moved into the
role of Osiris as beneficiary.59
So the places where the two are distinct pose no problem
whatsoever, and are still fluid with the nature of the texts. This is one

Faulkner (1973), 179.
Thomas G. Allen, The Book of the Dead or Going Forth by Day (Chicago:
University of Chicago Press, 1974), 3.
Hays (2012), 167-68. (Emph. added.)
reason why I will be primarily using Raymond Faulkners English
translation of the Pyramid Texts, as opposed to Samuel Mercers or
James P. Allens translations. Faulkners is more recent than Mercers,
and Mercer uses a more archaic style of English. As for Allens, while
the most recent English translation, his layout is personally less
appealing and reader friendly than Faulkners. Allen presents his texts
king by king, and he preserves the names of the kings, and thus is often
very redundant. Whereas Faulkner refers to the deceased by the generic
term King, and presents the texts in a structure that reads much more
like one consistent narrative, one in which Osiris is the protagonist.
Faulkner admitted in his preface that this was part of his intention with
his layout:
The cartouches of the royal dead have been rendered simply
as King or the King; to write King W.T.M.N and the like is ugly
and clumsy, while King X is not much better. Confining myself to
the simple title has the advantage of stressing the fact that these
texts have in origin no personal application to one particular king,
but are chosen out of an existing corpus. In arranging the
translation I have not split it up into short sentences corresponding
to the numbered sections of Sethes text as did Sethe himself and
Mercer; I have reproduced the prose passages in a continuous text
and have confined short lines to poetical texts and litanies, the
section numbers being noted in the margin in all cases. My hope is
that this procedure will not only make the translation easier to read
but will also give some notion of the literary character of a text.60
Furthermore, Allen translates certain words that traditionally are only
transliterated, and vice-versa. For example, in texts using the name of the
sun god Re, Allen translates every instance as the Sun. Therefore, if
one were to do a word search in his translation for texts concerning Re,
the search will yield zero results, which from personal experience can be
said to quickly become very frustrating.
Also, at the time of the writing of this book, Allens translation was
still relatively new (2005), and thus Faulkners translation is still the one
(of these three) most often cited in English-written scholarship of the last
quarter to half century, and it is the one that is personally most familiar.
All around, it is simply more convenient at this current time to use
Faulkners translation. This book will also be using Faulkners

Faulkner (1969), vii.
translation of the Coffin Texts as well, and the reason is obvious, because
it is the only complete English translation currently available.
As for the Book of the Dead, I will be breaking form and will be
using Thomas George Allens The Book of the Dead or Going Forth by
Day, as opposed to Faulkners translation. Not only is this volume by
T.G. Allen more recent (albeit only slightly), but it is far more complete,
including several spells that are not found in Faulkners version. Plus I
have also encountered several statements by scholars which prefer T.G.
Allens over Faulkners, such as Dr. Edmund S. Meltzer61 or Carleton T.
That aside, another potential point of confusion that should be
addressed is a particular power possessed by the gods, including Osiris
and the deceased who emulate him, and that is their power to shape-shift.
Renowned Egyptologist Erik Hornung explains:
In addition, transformation spells (inter alia, spells 268-
295) dealt with the deceased kings ascent to the sky in the
desirable form of a bird but also served to transform the deceased
into various deities (spell 290: into every god into which one might
desire to transform); into fire, air, or grain; or into a child or
crocodile. Indeed, in this period, the most popular amulet was the
scarab beetle, the hieroglyphic symbol for transformation.
spells 76-88, which serve to transform the deceased into various
forms, such as a falcon (77-78), the god Atum (79) or the god Ptah
(82), a lotus blossom (81), a benu-heron (83), the ba (soul) of Re
(85), a swallow (86), a serpent (87), and a crocodile (88). 63
Returning again to Dr. Brier:
One of the puzzling sections in the Book of the Dead deals
with magical transformation. This section consists of about a dozen
magical spells that, if recited, will cause the deceased to change into
various gods, animals, plants, or other animate things. All the spells
have the same basic format. The deceased is told to say that he is
the god, animal, or plant he desires to be, and then he lists the

Edmund Meltzer, Book of the Dead: Faulkner vs. Budge, Glyphdoctors (May
1, 2005),
Calvin W. Schwabe, Joyce Adams and Carleton T. Hodge, Egyptian Beliefs
about the Bulls Spine: An Anatomical Origin for Ankh, Anatomical Linguistics
24, no. 4 (1982): 447.
Erik Hornung, The Ancient Egyptian Books of the Afterlife, trans. D. Lorton
(Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1999), 9, 19.
attributes he especially wishes to have. For example, if the deceased
wants to be Sobek, the crocodile god, he says:
I am the crocodile who is terrifying. I am the crocodile god. I
bring destruction. I am the great fish in Qemay. I am the lord of
homage in Sekhem; lord of homage in Sekhem.
In all these spells, the basic principle is that the word is the
deed. Saying it makes it so. What is curious in this particular group
of spells is that the deceased should want to be all of these things.
His prime concern is immortality. While being terrifying as a
crocodile might help him survive the rigors of entering the
netherworld, one of the spells is for transformation into a lotus
flower, and how this could help is difficult to see. The only possible
explanation lies in the property associated with being a lotus in the
spell. Since the lotus was a sign of purity, perhaps this would help
the deceased pass the test in the Hall of the Double Truth.64
There is also the following from Dr. A. Jeffrey Spencer:
There are also a large number of transformation spells by
which the deceased could assume the form of various divinities or
animals. Spell 290 contains the ultimate assurance in this respect,
for it concludes with the words: The man shall be transformed into
any god the man may wish to be transformed into.65
So the gods, including Osiris, as well as the divinized deceased who
are identified with him, can transform themselves into any form
whatsoever that they desire. That form can be any animal or plant,66 and
inanimate objects such as stars,67 water, or even the intangible subtle
elements.68 This also included the power to shape-shift into the form of
any god that they desired to. As indicated by Brier above, changing into
these various forms was in order to gain a particular power or quality of
that form, such as changing into a bird to gain the power of flight. And

Brier (1980-2001), 139-40.
A. Jeffrey Spencer, Death in Ancient Egypt (Harmondsworth: Penguin Books,
1982), 142.
T.G. Allen (1974), Spell 20 T1, 86 b T, 99 c S3 & T, 142 P1, Pleyte 166 S3.
Faulkner (1969), Utt. 215, 216, 248, 265 357, 269 380, 302, 320, 328, 412
723 732, 432, 437 802 805, 441 818, 442, 461, 464, 466, 467 889, 473
930, 474 940, 480 998 n.5, 481 1000-01, 503 1080, 509 1123, 515
1182, 519 1207 1216, 520 1223, 536 1295, 537 1301, 554, 570 1454-
58, 571, 609 1707, 624 1760, 676 2014, 739.
For water (Nile), see Faulkner (1973), CT Spell 317; for fire, see Spell 284; for
air, see Spell 223 n.1 and Spell 288.
so, taking on the form of a god gives the shape-shifter the power of that
god. As Coffin Text Spell 30: I, 86-88 affirms: when they see N69
proceeding peacefully on the beautiful paths of the West in his god-like
shape,70 having acquired all powers when the great ones who preside
over the horizon spoke to him.71 For instance, in the example Brier
quoted above, the deceased can change into the form of the god Sobek,
and according to Coffin Text Spell 285, since he is lord of the waterway,
becoming Sobek gives the shape-shifter power over the waters of Egypt:
WATERWAY. I am the throwstick of the fen, I traverse the lakes,
I am alert when I traverse the shores, There have been given to
me the northern swamp-lands for my waterside settlements the
Xdw-fish which are in the water protect me, I am he who
emerges, the Lord of water.72
Or as Spells 75-83 indicate, one could shape-shift into the form of
Shu, god of the air, in order to gain his power to control the wind:
SHU. I am merged in the god, I have become he. I am he who
calmed the sky for himself, I am Shu, Come joyfully at
meeting the god in me, for I am Shu whom Atum fashioned, and
this garment of mine is the air of life . A cry for me went forth(?)6
from the mouth of Atum, the air opened up upon my ways. THAT
Throughout Egyptian history we find a common practice of
persons identifying themselves with other beings as a way of taking
on the desired qualities of those beings. For example, if one were
bitten by a snake, one might invoke a spell that insists that the
person bitten by the snake has become Horus. This identification
is valuable since Horus was believed to have survived a poisonous
snake bite. By becoming Horus, a person hoped to take on his
ability to survive what is normally a deadly experience. This
tendency toward identifying oneself with the preternatural is

A generic term for the coffin owner who has been identified with Osiris, see
Faulkner (1973), NOTES TO READERS.
Ibid. 19 n.7. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 19. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1973), 213. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 72-88. (Emph. added.)
expressed in desires to be identified with both divine and famous
Dr. Kerry Muhlestein, Journal of the Book of Mormon 74
Therefore, in order to gain various powers, gods can sometimes take
on the forms of other gods, such as in Spell 333, where the bA of Shu
shape-shifts into Re, and Re does vice-versa.75 This is important to
understand, so that one will not get confused when one is told that the
deceased is Osiris, and yet comes across passages where the deceased is
also referred to with the names or attributes of other gods. For example,
Pyramid Text Utterance 650 identified the king as Osiris, yet also called
him Anubis, and Utt. 734 described the king as having the face of a
canine like Wepwawet.76 This is merely shape-shifting, e.g. Book of the
Dead Spell 179 a S: (I take) the Form (of Anubis).77 Dr. Rune Nyord
3.3.3. Identifications of the face of the deceased
In a manner similar to the ideas discussed in the previous
section, a large number of examples are found where the face of
the deceased is identified with (that of) various other beings. In
transformation spells, the status of the face of the deceased is
sometimes stressed, so that when becoming Shu, the face of the
speaker is identified with HD-wrt var. mHt-wrt. In a Sobek spell, the
face is that of a crocodile, and in a spell for transformation to a
falcon, the face is accordingly said to be knit on as (that of) a
falcon. Other divine identifications of the face of the deceased
include Re-Atum, Nun, the unique akh with centipede-face,

Kerry Muhlestein, The Religious and Cultural Background of Joseph Smith
Papyrus I, in Journal of the Book of Mormon and Other Restoration Scripture
22, no. 1 (2013): 24.
Ibid. 257.
Faulkner (1969), 268, 314. These might also be references to the usage of a
jackal-shaped mask, perhaps to aid in the spell. See Terence DuQuesne, The
Egyptian Attitude to Animals, in Anubis, Upwawet, and Other Deities: Personal
Worship and Official Religion in Ancient Egypt, eds. W. El Sadeek and S.A. Razek
(Cairo: Supreme Council of Antiquities Press, 2007), 12, 14.
T.G. Allen (1974), 190. (Emph. added.)
Khensut, Wepwawet, Horus the Elder, Re, Sakhmet, the Great
One, and Horus.78
So referring back to the canine form mentioned above, this
corroborates with what Diodorus of Sicily wrote in his Library, 1.88.6:
Osiris came from Hades to help his son and his wife, having
taken on the guise of a wolf; and so, upon the death of Typhon, his
conquerors commanded men to honour the animal upon whose
appearance victory followed.79
Dr. Griffiths also adds:
There is some tangible evidence that Osiris too, in his
Abydene form, was theriomorphic and was imagined as a jackal. In
a spell addressed to the deceased King, found only in the pyramid
of Neferkare, occur these words:
[Hail, O King], equipped as a god, thy face is (that of) a
jackal, like Osiris; this ba which is in Nedyet, he is the
power who is in the Great City. (Pyr. 2108a-b. N.)
Hence must mean thy face is (that of) a jackal, like Osiris,
implying that the King has become identified with Osiris and so
now possesses the gods jackal-face. Professor L. Kkosy calls my
attention to the representation of Osiris as a jackal in the temple of
Hibis: see Norman de Garis Davies, The Temple of Hibis in el
Khrgeh Oasis, III. The Decoration (New York, 1953), pl. 4, reg.
5. There is indubitably an Osiris in the form of a jackal. 80
So these descriptions of Osiris and the deceased as having attributes
of other gods in no way detract from the fact that here the deceased is
Osiris, and that these texts are relaying the mythology of Osiris. As
Osiris, the deceased likewise has that gods power of shape-shifting. Its
as simple as that. Osiris still remains the primary identification for the
deceased and thus remains the primary protagonist. Returning to
Griffiths, he wrote:
Since the name of Osiris is the only name joined with that of
the deceased King in the Pyramid Texts to imply identification or
close association, he is the funerary god par excellence in these
texts. ... The identification with Osiris stands out . Its thoroughness

Rune Nyord, Breathing Flesh: Conceptions of the Body in the Ancient Egyptian
Coffin Texts (Copenhagen: Museum Tusculanum Press, 2009), 169.
Diodorus of Sicily, in OIdfather (1933-67), 303. (Emph. added.)
Griffiths (1980), 143-46.
contrasts with the many other identifications made, and three ways
of establishing it are followed. The Kings actions are said to be like
those of Osiris; and in all religions the power of ergon is stronger
than that of logos.81
With all of those preliminary points having been addressed in this
introduction, it is now possible to move on to the creed of the Perennial
Gospel itself.

Ibid. 44, 218. (Emph. added.)
Chapter One
I believe in God,
The Father Almighty,
Creator of Heaven and Earth

Who is God?
From the earliest ages of recorded history on down to our own time,
if mankind has been able to seemingly agree on at least one thing,
regardless of differences in language, culture, race, or environment, etc.,
that one thing, that one axiomatic universal truth, is that there is a God.
The specific characteristics of this God have certainly been subject to
countless different interpretations throughout the ages. However, it
would appear that the most consistently recurring theme concerning
interpretation of the divine is that there is at least one God that is the
progenitor of all that exists.
For the chosen people of the Holy Land of Kemet, from at least the
New Kingdom onward, this God was understood to be the unseen,
hidden force that is transcendent and yet animates the entire universe. In
effect, one might say of Him that verily thou art a hidden God, the God
of Kemet, and that He is before all things, and by Him all things consist
and are held together, that He is the King eternal, immortal, invisible,
the wise God to whom be honor and glory forever and ever, Amen. And
such is His name, Amen, an Egyptian word meaning hidden.
Such is affirmed by the famous Egyptian priest of the 3rd century
BCE,82 Manetho in regards to this name:
But Manetho of Sebennytus thinks that the meaning
concealed or concealment lies in this word.
Plutarch, Moralia 354E-D 83

Gerald P. Verbrugghe and John M. Wickersham, Berossos and Manetho:
Native Traditions in Ancient Mesopotamia and Egypt (Ann Arbor: The
University of Michigan Press, 1996-2003), 96.
Plutarch, in Babbitt (1936-62), 25.
The name Amen, meaning hiddeness, indicated the
unknowable essence of the god, whose power and authority were
far beyond human understanding.
Dr. Glenn Holland, Religion in the Ancient Mediterranean
World 84
Thebes celebrated a different major godAmun, the Hidden
Onewith powers so great he could not be visualized.
Dr. Bob Brier and Dr. A. Hoyt Hobbs, Daily Life of the
Ancient Egyptians 85
Amuns name seems to be connected with the word meaning
to conceal and it is indicative of the Egyptians own ideas on the
gods nature to interpret it as the hidden one. Thus the Greek
writer Plutarch appears on target when he quotes from the Egyptian
priest-chronicler Manetho the name Amun as meaning what is
concealed or invisible. Another possibility is that the gods name
comes from the ancient Libyan word aman meaning water. But
except for vague references to the Nile or Mediterranean Sea this is
not a prominent facet of the gods nature. For the Egyptians Amun
could only be understood as permeating the cosmos, occasionally
illuminated by an epithet that attempts to conceptualise his
universality. Since they were unable to pin the god down to one
explanatory nomen, the Egyptians stressed his complexity by
calling him asha renu or rich in names.
Similarly the human iconography of the god is really an
admission by the Egyptians that his true shape eludes visual
representation hidden of aspect, mysterious of form is one
description of the god. According to hymns even other deities are
unaware of his true appearance, none of them being in existence
before him. It is also stated that his image is absent from the
hieroglyphs which only give the phonetic signs comprising his
name; other gods often have their names involving a major
manifestation, e.g. an ibis or crocodile, but the stark consonantal
structure of Amuns name offers no such visual clue. The concept
of the gods invisibility admirably suits his association with the
breeze or the notion of Amun as an unseen demiurge.
Dr. George Hart, The Routledge Dictionary of Egyptian Gods
and Goddesses 86

Glenn S. Holland, Religion in the Ancient Mediterranean World (Chantilly: The
Teaching Company LLC, 2005), Lecture 7.
Brier and Hobbs (2008), 36.
Referring now to Dr. James P. Allens guide to Middle Egyptian

The name Amun ( jmn, more fully

jmnw) means hidden. Unlike all the other Egyptian gods, who
were immanent in the phenomena of nature, Amun was
transcendent; he existed above and apart from the universe,
hidden from the created world. This quality of Amun is
sometimes reflected in an epithet jmn(w)-rn.f He
whose identity (literally, name) is hidden (a nfr Hr construction:
6.5) and it is occasionally referred to in religious texts of the New
Kingdom. The clearest statement of Amuns transcendence,
however, comes from an essay on the god that was written in the
19 Dynasty, probably during the reign of Ramesses II, on a
papyrus that is now in the Netherlands National Museum of
Antiquities in Leiden.87
The Book of the Dead, written during the New Kingdom, states in
Spell 165 S 1:

O Amon, thou hidden of aspect, mysterious of form.88

That papyrus is the Leiden Papyrus I 350, dated to the 13th century
BCE or so.89 In chapter 80 it reads:
You being Single.
Secret was Your body among the elders,
and You kept Yourself hidden as Amun,
at the head of the gods.90
Then in chapter 90 it says:

George Hart, The Routledge Dictionary of Egyptian Gods and Goddesses (New
York: Routledge, 1986-2005), 14.
James P. Allen, Middle Egyptian: An Introduction to the Language and Culture
of Hieroglyphs (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000-10), 186.
T.G. Allen (1974), 161.
Jacobus J. Janssen, Two Ancient Egyptian Ships Logs: Papyrus Leiden I 350
Verso and Papyrus Turin (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1961), 4.
Wim van den Dungen, Ancient Egyptian Wisdom Readings (Antwerp: 2011),
181. Available online at
(Emph. added.)
You emerged first, You inaugurated from the start.
Amun, whose name is hidden from the gods.
Oldest elder, more distinguished than these. 91
In chapter 100:
The One who initiated existence
on the first occasion,
Amun, who developed in the beginning,
whose origin is unknown.
No god came into being prior to Him.
No other god was with Him
who could say what He looked like.92
In chapter 200:
Secret of manifestation and sparkling of shape.
One is Amun,
who keeps Himself concealed from them,
who hides Himself from the gods,
no one knowing His nature.
He is more remote than the sky,
He is deeper than the netherworld.
None of the gods knows His true form.
His image is not unfolded in the papyrus rolls.
Nothing certain is testified about Him.
He is too secretive
for His Majesty to be revealed,
He is too great to be enquired after,
too powerful to be known.
People immediately fall face to face into death
when His Name is uttered
knowingly or unknowingly.
There is no god able to invoke Him by it.
He is Soul-like, hidden of name,
like His Secrecy.93
From chapter 300:

Ibid. 183. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 185. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 187-8. (Emph. added.)
His identity is hidden as Amun.94
Dr. Allen also states:
Unlike the other gods, Amun is not part of the created world
(He is farther than the sky, he is deeper than the Duat) and is
therefore hiddennot just from human understanding but even
from the knowledge of the gods themselves, who are also part of
the created world. Although Amun himself cannot be known,
however, his existence can be deduced from the very fact that the
world exists.95
Another primary source affirming the hidden nature of Amen as
being beyond both human and divine perception is the Great Amen
Hymn at the Temple of Hibis, constructed during the 27th Dynasty in
around the 6th century BCE.96 As translated by Egyptologist David
O Amun-Re,
Who hides himself in his iris!
Ba who illumines by means of his oracular wedjat-eyes.
who manifests a manifestation:
sacred one, who cannot be known.
Brilliant of visible forms,
who hides himself with his mysterious akh-eyes.
mysterious one, whose secrets cannot be known.97
There is also the Invocation Hymn, which states:
[Leading] the secret [rit]es of Amun which are upon the slates of
Words spoken by (one),
Horus having [purified] him, and Thoth having censed him,
in order to do everything good and pure
for Amun-Re Lord of the Thrones of the Two Lands,
for Amun-Re, Lord of Hibis, mighty of scimitar,
[according to] all his mysterious titularies,

Ibid. 191. (Emph. added.)
J.P. Allen (2000-10), 186. (Emph. added.)
David Klotz, Adoration of the Ram: Five Hymns to Amun-Re from Hibis
Temple, Yale Egyptological Studies 6 (New Haven: Yale Egyptological Seminar,
2006), 1-2.
Ibid. 199. (Emph. added.)
which are hidden from his children.
At this point, Klotz references note D, which reads:
Amun (Imn) is commonly referred to as hidden; covered;
remote (imn qAi sSm) or as one who actively covers himself, with
the result that nobody might know his form or color (imn, HAp,
StA). Sethes discussion of the invisibility of Amun, he notes that
this additional epithet, hidden of name, heightens the
transcendence of Amun by making him both a dues invisibilis and
a dues ineffabilis. Thus Amun is ineffable, incomprehensible, as
well as indomitable, given the power the Egyptians attributed to
knowing a certain deitys name.98
The Hibis Hymn to the Bas of Amen states: His voice is heard, but
he is not seen.99
Theres also the following from the Decree of Amen for Princess
Neskhons, dated to the early 21st dynasty (11th to early 10th cen. BCE100):
Secret of form, who is unknown,
Who has hidden himself from all the gods,
Who has set himself apart as the solar disk, yet who is unknown,
Who has concealed himself from what has come forth from

God in Three Persons, Blessed Trinity

The mention of the sun as His visible representation leads into the
next point. Although the true God is one God (as cited earlier- You
being Single), He is one God revealed in three persons. To return to the
Leiden Papyrus I 350, chapter 300:
All gods are three: Amun, Re, Ptah, without their equal.
His identity is hidden as Amun,
he is Re in appearance,

Ibid. 16-17. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 195.
Robert K. Ritner, The Libyan Anarchy: Inscriptions From Egypts Third
Intermediate Period (Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature, 2009), 145.
Ibid. 151-153 .
and his body is Ptah.102
The Great Amen Hymn also affirms:
So did you establish your throne in Ankhtawy,
As Amun-Re, Ba Lord of the firmament,
These (both) mean: your form in the initial moment,
When you arose as Amun-Re-Ptah.103
Klotz also adds the following:
This is another example of a three-tier world or, more
appropriately, of a trinity. These three deities appear together at
Hibis as recipients of a Maat-offering scene. Noting the Graeco-
Roman correspondances of Egyptian deities (Amun = Zeus, Osiris-
Ptah = Hades, Re = Helios) one should compare the following
Orphic statement quoted by both Macrobius and Julian: Zeus,
Hades, Helios Serapis: three gods in one godhead! More explicitly
dealing with Egyptian religion, Iamblichus aptly described the
various aspects of the demiurge (Kneph):
The demiurgical intellect, master of truth and wisdom, when
he comes in the creation and brings to light the invisible power
of hidden words, is called Amun , but when he infallibly and
artistically, in all truth, creates every thing, he is called Ptah (a
name which the Greeks translate Hephaistos, only observing
his ability as an artisan).104
Amen is the one true God. Yet He is revealed in three persons
through which He can physically interact with, and be perceived by, the
natural world.

Klotz (2006), 123. Dungen (2011), 191.
Klotz (2006), 207.
Ibid. 123-24. (Emph. added.)
Fig. 1: The Holy Trinity of God, depicted here as Ptah, Re-Horakhti, and Amen-Re;
Stela of Chia, dated to the New Kingdom, currently at the Louvre Museum in Paris.

He that Hath Seen the Son Hath Seen the Father

He is Re in appearance. Re was the primary god of the sun in
ancient Egypt. So although as Amen this God is hidden, as Re He can be
visibly seen through His sun disk. Hence the sun is often likened to an
eye, in particular that of Amen-Re Himself, such as in the Great Amen
Hymn quoted earlier which references how His eyes both hide Himself
and illuminate the world. Klotz again elaborates:
Amun hiding himself in his iris is a perfect expression of the
differences between Amarna and Ramesside solar theology.
Whereas Akhenaten worshipped the sun disk (Aten) itself, the later
theology stresses the hidden and imperceivable aspect of Amun-Re.
Amun-Re is not the physical sun that one perceives, but the

hidden Ba, who travels within the sun disk, radiating his divine
power throughout the universe.105
The sun is the eye of Amen-Re, it is the visible image of the
unseen God. This only makes sense, given that the eye is the organ of
sight, and sight is made possible by the light of the sun. It would seem
such an observation was also later acknowledged by the famous Greek
philosopher Socrates, in a dialogue he allegedly had with Glaucon. As
recorded by his protg, Plato, in Republic 508a:
Whose is that light which makes the eye to see perfectly and the
visible to appear?
You mean the sun, as you and
all mankind say.
May not the relations of sight to
this deity be described as follows?
Neither sight nor the eye in which
sight resides is the sun?
Fig. 2
No. For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro
throughout the whole earth.
Yet of all the organs of sense the
eye is the most like the sun?
By far the most like.
And the power which the eye possesses is a sort of effluence which
is dispensed from the sun?
Then the sun is not sight, but the author of sight who is recognized
by sight?
True, he said.
And this is he whom I call the child of the good, whom the good
begat in his own likeness, to be in the visible world , in relation to

Ibid. 176.
sight and the things of sight, what the good is in the intellectual
world in relation to mind and the things of mind.106
So the sun is the likeness of the Good (i.e. the true God107) in this
visible world, just as the hymns to Amen declare. Not only is the sun the
brightness of His glory, and the express image of His person, but
Socrates also observed that the sun is the child of the true God. So the
sun of God is also the Son of God, and the Son is the very image of the
Father. The Father is revealed in the Son. He that hath seen the Son
hath seen the Father, for the Son is in the Father, and the Father is in
the Son. He and His Father are one. Re is indeed one with Amen and is
Amen Himself, and not only is He also the sun god of Amen, as has been
demonstrated, but Re is also the Son of Amen. Hence He is His own
Father and His own Son, the self-created God. As Coffin Text Spell 133
II, 158 declares: I am Re, the father of Re. The Invocation Hymn at
Hibis likewise affirms:
the one most-secret of visible forms,
in his manifestations of Re.
Transforming into Re,
Having been ma[de as the god] who came about by himself. 108
In the Creator Hymn, columns 8-9 read:
He [came forth?] as a child, who rejuvenates himself at his proper
As a youth [who b]ore the Ogdoad,
A baby who radiates [morning-light?].109
The Hymn to the Bas of Amen states:
You are Amun,
you are Atum,

Plato, Republic, in The Dialogues of Plato Vol. II, trans. B. Jowett (Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press, 1871-2010), 343. (Emph. added.)
Corpus Hermeticum XI., Nous to Hermes, in Hermetica: The Greek Corpus
Hermeticum and the Latin Asclepius in a New English Translation with Notes
and Introduction, trans. by B.P. Copenhaver (Cambridge: Cambridge University
Press, 1992), 37. The essence (so to speak) of god is the good. (Emph.
Klotz (2006), 196-97.
Ibid. 213.
you are Khepri,
you are Re.
You are the one who built his body with his own hands, in
every form of his desire.110
Here we have reference to Re by His morning and evening names as
well. The Pyramid Texts confirm this, in Utterance 606 1695:
Re in this his name of Khoprer; Re in this his name of Re;
Re in this his name of Atum.111
In The Legend of Isis and the Name of Re from the Turin Papyrus
(19th Dynasty, 13th-12th cen. BCE), Re says to Isis:
I am Khepri in the morning, Re at noon, and Atum who is in
the evening.112
Chapter 200 of P. Leiden I 350 states:
Amun, begetter of Re. He completed himself as Atum,
being of one body with him.113
Since Atum is another name for Amen-Re, His evening name, and as
covered earlier, since Amen-Re is also Ptah, for He is a trinity, this leads
to another text affirming that God the Son is His own Father who begat
Himself. That text is known as The Memphite Theology, originally dated
to the Old Kingdom Period.114 Beginning at section 48, it reads:
The gods who came into being in Ptah:
Ptah-on-the-great-throne ------.
Ptah-Nun, the father who made Atum.115
The Son of God also is God. Amen is both the God of the sun and
also Father of the sun. Hence it is the case that the Lord God is a sun and
yet at the same time He is the Lord which giveth the sun for a light by
day. He shall be as the light of the morning, when the sun riseth, and

Ibid. 191. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1969), 251.
Robert K. Ritner, The Legend of Isis and the Name of Re {1.22} (P. Turin
1993), in The Context of Scripture: Canonical Compositions from the Biblical
World, Vol. 1, eds. W.W. Halo and K.L. Younger (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1997), 34.
Dungen (2011), 187. (Emph. added.)
Miriam Lichtheim, Ancient Egyptian Literature Volume I: The Old and Middle
Kingdoms (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1973-2006), 51.
Ibid. 54.
shall shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of the Father. His face doth
shine as the sun, and His countenance was as the sun shineth in His

The Firstborn of All Creation

So the fact is firmly established from the evidence that long before
the Common Era this God was known to be one God in three persons,
who is both His own Father and His own Son. Not only that, but it is also
the case that His mother is His own daughter. Thats rightas Re, He
had a mother. In fact, Re had two mothers, one for the inaugural birth,
the other for His rebirth, but more on that later.
Now, before going over Res first birth and His mother who
delivered Him, I would first like to cover some genealogy. After bringing
Himself into existence, according to several traditions, the first thing
Amen created was the Nun, which is the living ocean of the primordial
chaos. It is the source of the material world, from which the rest of the
cosmos was created. Amen is the Father which brought forth the Nun
from within Himself, hence it is a part of Him, a manifestation of His
An inscription from the sanctuary of the Small Temple of Medinet
Habu illustrates this fact in the following manner: Amun-Re of Medinet
Habu, Nun the Elder who came about in the beginning, Bull who
ejaculates Nun. This expression is paralleled at the temple of Deir el-
Shelwit: One who begets gods, bull who ejaculates Nun.116
Dr. Klotz adds that:
The bull is an ideal hypostasis of Amun-Re to ejaculate Nun;
not only because of his virility, but also because of the connection
between bulls and water. thus we have Re the bull, who
ejaculates light as well as the primeval waters from which he will
ultimately be reborn. As noted above, this is closely related with the
engendering form of Amun-Kamutef (Bull of his Mother), the
ejaculating bull who begets himself. This mytheme, as found at
Hibis, is not a far cry from the Ptolemaic Ogdoad theology: in both
cases, Amun himself creates the primordial chaos (Hibis: the Nun-

Klotz (2006), 24.
waters; Ptolemaic: the Ogdoad), which in turn gives birth to the
sun, which in both cases is Amun himself. 117
The Hibis Creator Hymn states:
He [founded] this great land, with Nun, the Great Circular Sea
and the Surrounding Seas surrounding it. The one whom [the
Nile] brings, having opened the two caverns, having shot out Nun-
waters from his grotto.118
A hymn to Amen-Re in the Hunefer Papyrus reads:
It is you who created the primeval waters, fashioned the
Nile, Who created the floods, caused those who are in them to live,
Praises to you, Amun-Re! resting in Maat as you ferry across
Returning to Leiden Papyrus I 350, this time from chapter 600, it
His belly is Nun, and that which is in it is the Nile, giving birth
to all things that are, and making to live all that exists. He blows
breath into every nose.120
So out of Amens belly flow rivers of living water, or as Samuel
Mercer put it: his belly is the heavenly ocean.121 Those are the life-
giving waters of Nun which give birth to all that exists, and Amen
breaths into our nostrils the breath of life. So this text demonstrates the
point that it was through the living waters of the Nun that the rest of
creation arose.
The first beings to arise from the Nun were the many creator gods
who became the agents of Amens creative power and finished producing

Ibid. 24-25.
Ibid. 150, 162. (Emph. added.)
John. L. Foster, Hymns, Prayers, and Songs: An Anthology of Ancient
Egyptian Love Poetry (Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1995), 86. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 45 n.255.
Adolf Erman, The Literature of the Ancient Egyptians, trans. Aylward M.
Blackman (New York: Benjamin Blom Inc., 1927-71), 301.
Alexandre Piankoff, The Litany of Re, Bollingen Series XL.4 (New York: Pantheon
Books, 1964), 44-45.
Samuel A.B. Mercer, The Religion of Ancient Egypt (London: Luzac & Co.,
1949), 308.
the rest of the cosmos with Him. Examples of such creator gods include
Khonsu122, the Ogdoad123, and above all, the Holy Mother goddess Neith.
Just as Amen is the Father of all creation, Neith is the Mother of all
creation, who formed herself within the waters of the Nun. Professor
Harold Scheub writes:
Neith (Net) was the mother goddess, She was a creator
goddess who formed all things. In the beginning, she found herself
in the watery waste of Nun, and she formed herself when the world
was still in shadow and when there was no earth on which to rest,
when no plant grew.124
As revealed in traditions such as those of Sais and Esna, Neith was
the first being to emerge from Nun.125 In a New Kingdom text known
as The Contendings of Horus and Seth, the scribal god Thoth wrote a
letter to Neith in which he addressed her as Neith, the eldest,
the Mother of the gods, who shone in the primeval time.126 Seeing as
how Amen was imperceptible and hidden from even the gods
themselves, it is only natural that some came to believe instead that Neith
was the eldest. She was the eldest of those who arose out of the Nun.
As Thoth stated, Neith is indeed the blessed Mother of the gods.
Now concerning her first-born child, there is a statue currently at the
Vaticans Gregorian Egyptian Museum which dates to the time of the
Persian rule of Egypt, specifically the early reign of King Darius I, c. 519

Lszl Kkosy, Egyptian Healing Statues in Three Museums in Italy, Serie I
Monumenti e Testi 9 (Turin: Ministero per I Beni e le Attivit Culturali
Sopintendenza al Museo delle Antichit Egizie, 1999), 76, 86, 106.
J.P. Allen (2000-10), 130-31.
Harold Scheub, A Dictionary of Mythology: The Mythmaker as Storyteller
(New York: Oxford University Press, 2000), 172.
Edward Bleiberg, Arts & Humanities Through the Eras: Ancient Egypt 2675-
322 B.C.E. (Detroit: Thomson Gale, 2005), 216. (Emph. added.)
Klotz (2006), 41.- "223 el-Sayed, RdE 26 (1974): 76, n. 12; this play on words is
particularly striking in Esna III, 305,18 (= Sauneron, Esna V, 202): ink (N.t) nt ir
nty omA wnn.t nb I (Neith) am the water surface, who made what is and
created all that exists."
R.T. Rundle Clark, Myth and Symbol in Ancient Egypt (New York: Thames &
Hudson Inc., 1959), 198. (Emph. added.)
BCE.127 It is a depiction of Udjahorresnet, a Saitic physician and priest of
Neith (Fig. 4). The inscriptions on this statue contain several adorations
to Neith, and one line in particular, located under the right arm, reads:
I let his majesty know the greatness of Sais, that it is the seat of
Neith-the-Great, the mother who bore Re and inaugurated birth
when birth had not yet been.128
So, the first-born Son of Neith, the first-born of all creation, was
none other than Re, who is also Amen Himself, who created the Nun
from which Neith created her self. Therefore, as stated earlier, Amen is
not only His own Father and Son, but His mother is also His daughter.

Miriam Lichtheim, Ancient Egyptian Literature Volume III: The Late Period
(Berkeley: University of California Press, 1980-2006), 36-7.
A. Rosalie David, Religion and Magic in Ancient Egypt (New York: Penguin
Books, 2002), 313.
Lichtheim (1980-2006), 38. (Emph. added.)
Fig. 3

Fig. 4

Behold, a Virgin Shall Conceive

Another interesting fact pointed out by the aforementioned

inscription is that this was the first birth in history. Therefore Neith was
all alone. No one else had yet been born. No one else was there with her
yet- no one except for Amen, who was hidden from her. Therefore she
had no one to mate with. There could be no copulation to bring about this
birth when the only potential mate is entirely imperceptible to her. This
conception and birth of Re from His mother Neith, the first birth ever,
came about by parthenogenesis. In other words, this was a virgin birth.
Neith was a creator goddess, and she did not need a partner in
order to conceive and give birth.
Dr. Olaf E. Kaper, The Egyptian God Tutu 129
In Sais in the Delta, for example, there was a virgin goddess
who gave birth to the sun at the beginning of time by some form of
Dr. John D. Ray, Reflections of Osiris: Lives from Ancient
Neith did not depend on a male partner for her creative
powers, which encompassed the entire universe of gods, animals,
and humans.
Dr. Barabara S. Lesko, The Great Goddesses of Egypt
Another primary source affirming that Re was born of a virgin is a
statue of His mother Neith that was once located at her temple in Sais.
Though it is now no longer extant, its existence and inscription was
documented by a couple of writers from antiquity. Reconstructing it from
quotes by Plutarch132 and Proclus,133 the inscription said:

Olaf E. Kaper, The Egyptian God Tutu: A Study of the Sphinx-God and Master
of Demons with a Corpus of Monuments (Leuven: Peeters Publishers, 2003),
John D. Ray, Reflections of Osiris: Lives from Ancient Egypt (New York:
Oxford University Press, 2002), 63.
Barbara S. Lesko, The Great Goddesses of Egypt (Norman: University of
Oklahoma Press, 1999), 50.
Plutarch, Moralia, 354C.
I am what is, and what will be, and what has been,
No one has lifted my veil.
The fruit I bore was the sun.134
Dr. Erik Hornung comments that the veil having never been lifted
clearly refers to sexual union,135 and the obvious lack thereof.
Egyptologist Jan Assmann states, concerning the inscription:
It refers not to an epistemological dilemma, the absolute
unattainability of truth, but to the parthenogenesis of the sun out of
the womb of a maternal All-Goddess.136
So intimately linked was Neiths identity with parthenogenesis/virgin
motherhood that eventually she became widely identified with the
Greco-Roman patron deity of virginity itselfthe celibate warrior
goddess known as Athena (Minerva to the Romans137). Plato recorded
the words of Critias in Timaeus 21E, c. 360 BCE138, in regards to Sais:
This city was founded by a goddess whose name was Neith in
Egyptian and (according to the people there) Athena in Greek.
They are very friendly to Athens and claim to be related to our
people somehow or other.139
Cicero (c. mid-1st century BCE), writing of various versions of the
Athena/Minerva mythology, states:

Proclus, On the Timaeus of Plato, I.98.
Erik Hornung, The Secret Lore of Egypt: Its Impact on the West, trans. D.
Lorton (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2001), 134.
Jan Assmann, Periergia: Egyptian Reactions to Greek Curiosity, in Cultural
Borrowings and Ethnic Appropriations in Antiquity, ed. Erich S. Gruen (Stuttgart:
Franz Steiner Verlag, 2005), 47.
Michael Gagarin, The Oxford Encyclopedia of Ancient Greece & Rome, Vol. 1
(New York: Oxford University Press, 2010), P-Q.97.
David T. Runia, Philo of Alexandria and The Timaeus of Plato (Leiden: E.J.
Brill, 1986), 3, n.1.
Plato, Plato: Complete Works, ed. J.M. Cooper and D.S. Hutchinson, trans.
Donald J. Zeyl (Indianapolis: Hackett Publishing Company, Inc., 1997), 1229.
As for Minervas, the first is the one who we said was the
mother of Apollo. The second, the daughter of the Nile, is
worshipped by Egyptians at Sais.140
It is interesting that Cicero also notes there was a tradition in which
Athena was also the mother of Apollo, who was one of the solar deities
of the Greco-Roman world.141 In that respect, such a fact adds to the
parallels between Athena and Neith, for as already covered, Neith was
also the mother of a sun god. Other parallels supporting the identification
between Neith and Athena include the fact that both were believed to
have been born in sacred waters (Neith from out of the Nun of Amen, as
stated earlier, and Athena, in one version, was born in the Lake Tritonis
of Poseidon142), and both were depicted as warrior goddesses.143 Both of
them were also begotten by the Most High god. As already covered,
Neith was ultimately begotten of Amen, and Athena was begotten of
Zeus, a.k.a. Jupiter or Jove, the king of the gods and of heaven, who was
identified by the ancient Greeks and Romans with Amen Himself.144
The most relevant parallel, for the point at hand, is that they were
both virgin mothers of a divine serpent. One of the more essential
physical manifestations or hypostases of Amen-Re was that of the
chthonic serpent Kematef.145 It is by way of this ophidian form that Lord

Cicero, The Nature of the Gods, trans. P.G. Walsh (Oxford: Oxford University
Press, 1998), 3.59/129.
Fritz Graf, Apollo (London: Taylor & Francis, 2008-09), 121-23.
Herodotus, Histories, in The Landmark Herodotus: The Histories, ed. R.B.
Strassler, trans. A.L. Purvis (New York: Anchor Books, 2009), 356.
Homer, The Odyssey, in The Odyssey of Homer, trans. T.E. Lawrence (New York:
Oxford University Press, 1932-91), 39.
B.S. Lesko (1999), 50.
Susan Deacy, Athena (London: Taylor & Francis, 2008), 3, 7-10, 18, 28, 30, 32,
35-44, 58, 82, 90, 112, 118, 120-21, 131, 135, 148, 158.
Herodotus, in Strassler (2009), 129 n.2.29.7b, 134, 142. The Egyptians call
Zeus by the name of Ammon.
Plutarch, in Babbitt (1936-62), 25. Moreover, most people believe that Amoun
is the name given to Zeus in the land of the Egyptians, a name which we, with a
slight alteration, pronounce Ammon.
Klotz (2006), 3, 31, 49, 144.
Hart (1986-2005), 20-21.
Oakes (2002-05), 306.
Amen rejuvenates Himself, and His Ogdoad as well, thereby sustaining
the universe which He created.146 The scriptures tell mankind of that
fiery serpent, that when he looketh upon it, shall live: Everyone lives
by seeing his rays.147 It is no wonder then that ancient Egyptians used
the image of a serpent, and in particular a serpent lifted up on a staff, in
association with resurrection and eternal life (Fig. 6 & 7), and even today
is still being used as a symbol for life and healing (Fig. 8).

Fig. 5: The Creator in hypostasis as both primeval serpent and newborn sun
god; based on a vignette of the Brooklyn Magical Papyrus 47.218.156, c. 5 th century
BCE. He came forth as a child, who rejuvenates himself at his proper time as a
youth who bore the Ogdoad, a baby who radiates morning-light, who shines in his
mHn.t-serpent which encloses him.148

Lanny Bell, The New Kingdom Divine Temple: The Example of Luxor, in
Temples of Ancient Egypt, ed. B.E. Shafer (Ithaca: Cornell University Press,
1997), 178.
Lszl Trk, The Image of the Ordered World in Ancient Nubian Art: The
Construction of the Kushite Mind (800 BC 200 AD) (Leiden: Koninklijke Brill
NV, 2002), 36.
Dieter Arnold, The Encyclopedia of Ancient Egyptian Architecture (New York:
I.B. Tauris & Co Ltd, 2003), 144.
Dirk van der Plas, The Veiled Image of Amenapet, in Effigies Dei: Essays on
the History of Religions, ed. Plas (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1987), 3-4.
Klotz (2006), 144.
Fig. 6: Based on a relief block from a building of Amenemhat I, c. 1981-1952 BCE,
currently at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The scene depicts Horus giving an ankh
cross, the symbol for life, to the king (or his bA) in the form of a falcon. To the right is a
serpent lifted up on a staff (i.e. the was-scepter) and bearing a shen ring around its neck,
the symbol for eternity. Thus the cross and the serpent on the staff give eternal life.

Fig. 7: Statue of Anubis, c. 1st century CE, currently located at the Vaticans Gregorian
Egyptian Museum. Anubis is an Egyptian mortuary god who oversees the process of
mummification & resurrection. He is depicted here holding a staff entwined with two
serpents, no doubt to aid in restoring life to the deceased.

Fig. 8: The caduceus insignia for the United States Navy Hospital Corpsmen. Even in
our own time the image of the serpent on the staff remains a symbol for the restoration of
life & health. The legacy of Kemet lives on.

Fig. 9: Based on a Luna marble relief from a temple of Hephaistos, currently at the
Museum of Ostia. The scene depicts the virgin birth of Erichthonius in the form of a
serpent accompanied by his parents, Athena and Hephaistos (the head is damaged).

May that life-giving serpent of God be exalted and lifted up: that
whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.
Since Neith is the Holy Mother of God, Amen-Re, she is by default the
mother of His hypostases as well. Thus by extension Neith was the virgin
mother of a divine serpent.
In the Greek mythology of Athena, there existed a version in which
she was the mother of Ericthonius, sometimes called Erechtheus. This
myth is referenced to at least as far back as Homer (8th cen. BCE).149 The
two most detailed accounts include the version preserved in the work
known as The Library of Apollodorus (1st cen. CE150), 3.14.6, as well
as the version of Euripides (5th cen. BCE151), as preserved by Hyginus in
Astronomica 2.13, and alluded to in Euripides own work Ion, 1.20-26,
268-74, 999-1009, & 1428-29. Based on those accounts, the story goes
that Hephaistos/Vulcan attempted to rape Athena, but in an effort to
preserve her virginity, she fought him off, and he ejaculated on her thigh.
She wiped away the seed and buried it in the earth. Apparently, the
mingling of her skin flakes with the seed of Hephaistos gave rise to
Ericthonius, who sprang forth out of the earth.
Because he came forth from the earth, some versions depict the earth
goddess, Gaia, acting as Athenas surrogate, returning Ericthonius back
to his true mother as soon as he is born.152 In other versions, he arises

Homer, The Iliad, trans. Ian Johnston (Arlington: Richer Resources
Publications, 2006-07), 45. Athens, land of proud Erectheus, whom Athena
raised, after he was born out of the harvest land.
Michael Simpson, Gods & Heroes of the Greeks: The Library of Apollodorus
Translated with Introduction and Notes (Amherst: University of Massachusetts
Press, 1976), 1.
Luke Roman, Monica Roman, Encyclopedia of Greek and Roman Mythology
(New York: Facts On File, Inc., 2010), 301.
Wendy Cotter, Miracles in Graeco-Roman Antiquity: A Sourcebook (New York:
Taylor & Francis, 1999-2003), 13, 26.
Giannis Stamatellos, Introduction to Presocratics: A Thematic Approach to
Early Greek Philosophy with Key Readings (Oxford: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.,
2012), 119.
Larissa Bonfante, Nursing Mothers in Classical Art, in Naked Truths:
Women, Sexuality, and Gender in Classical Art and Archaeology, eds. A.O.
Kolowski-Ostrow and C.L. Lyons (London: Taylor & Francis, 1997-2004), 189 n.4.
directly from out of the soil in the form of a serpent (Fig. 9), thus serving
as somewhat of a parallel to Neiths virgin motherhood of Amen-Re and
his hypostasis as the Kematef serpent. This can be seen in the statue
known as Athna la ciste, located in the Louvre Museum in Paris,
France (Fig. 10). It is a Roman replica of a late 5th century BCE Greek
original, in the style of the artist Cephisodotus. The statue depicts Athena
standing upright, while holding in her left arm a basket, or ciste, which
contains an infant serpent. The basket along with the state of infancy
makes the identity obviousthe serpent here is Erichthonius, as the
museum affirms.153 The serpent form of the son of Athena is also verified
by the giant statue once located at the Parthenon commonly referred to as
the Athena Parthenos. The original was sculpted by the famous artist
Pheidias in around 438 BCE.154 While this work is no longer extant, its
general appearance has been preserved through descriptions in texts and
replications on coins, plates, statues, and other works. It depicts Athena
in warrior mode, clad in armor, with shield and spear, accompanied by
her serpent child. Among the earliest examples of such a replica is a
terracotta disk (Fig. 11), dated to around 400-375 BCE.155 As Dr. Jeffrey
M. Hurwit describes it:
Camp, 1996, announced the discovery in the Agora of an early
fourth-century terracotta token or disk with a small version of the
Athena Parthenos in relief. This image one of the earliest extant
representations of the statue shows the Athena without a

Liz Locke, Eurydices Body: Feminist Reflections of the Orphic Descent Myth in
Philosophy and Film (Bloomington: Indiana University, 2000), 126.
Muse du Louvre, Athna la
(accessed October 14, 2012).
Pierre Brl, La fille dAthnes: La religion des filles Athnes lpoque
classique (Paris: Mythes, cultes et socit, 1987), 69-70.
Jenifer Neils, Phidias, in The Oxford Encyclopedia of Ancient Greece and
Rome Vol. 4, eds. M. Gagarin and E. Fantham (New York: Oxford University
Press, 2010), 242.
John M. Camp, The Archaeology of Athens (New Haven: Yale University
Press, 2001), 80.
supporting column beneath the outstretched right hand; instead,
the snake appears there.156
Another early depiction of the Athena Parthenos can be seen in
Figure 12. It illustrates a proxeny decree in honor of Philiskos Lykou of
Sestos, is currently at the National Archaeological Museum of Athens,
and dated to around 354 BCE.157 Although significantly damaged, the
serpent can still be seen behind the shield of Athena, beneath her left arm
where she is holding a figure of Nike, Athena herself being positioned in
the center of the scene.158 A more detailed replica of Pheidias statue is
also to be found at the aforementioned museum. It is known as the
Varvakeion Athena and it is a Roman reproduction dated to the 2nd
century CE,159 illustrated in Fig. 13. Once again, the serpent can be seen
located behind the shield. The identity of Pheidias serpent was
preserved by Pausanias, and it was indeed explicitly known to be that of
her son, Ericthonius:
As you enter the temple that they name the Parthenon, The
statue of Athena is upright, with a tunic reaching to the feet, and on
her breast the head of Medusa is worked in ivory. She holds a
statue of Victory about four cubits high, and in the other hand a
spear; at her feet lies a shield and near the spear is a serpent. This
serpent would be Erichthonius.160
While the means by which Athena produced Ericthonius might at
first glance seem slightly convoluted when reading accounts of it, the
fact that this ancient myth was indeed understood to be a virgin birth by a
celibate goddess is affirmed by the 1st century sage, Apollonius of Tyana.

Jeffrey M. Hurwit, The Athenian Acropolis: History, Mythology, and
Archaeology from the Neolithic Era to the Present (Cambridge: Cambridge
University Press, 1999), 330 n.78.
Carol L. Lawton, Athenian anti-Macedonian sentiment and democratic
ideology in Attic document reliefs in the second half of the fourth century B.C.,
in The Macedonians in Athens: 322-229 B.C., eds. O. Palagia and S.V. Tracy,
(Oxford: Oxbow Books, 2003), 119.
Hurwit (1999), 53, 330 n.78.
John Freely, Strolling Through Athens: Fourteen Unforgettable Walks
Through Europes Oldest City (London: I.B. Tauris & Co. Ltd, 1991-2004), 290.
Pausanias, Description of Greece: Books 1-2, trans. W.H.S. Jones (London:
William Heinemann Ltd., and Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press,
1918-92), 123-25. (Emph. added.)
Fig. 10: Athna la ciste, on her left bosom can be seen her infant son Erichthonios,
again in serpent form.

Fig. 11

Fig. 12

Fig. 13

According to his disciple Damis,161 as later preserved by Philostratus,
the following conversation occurred while Apollonius was in prison:
Another man said that he was under indictment because when
sacrificing in Tarentum, where he was a magistrate, he had not
added to the public prayers the fact that Domitian was the son of
Athena. You, said Apollonius, thought that Athena could not
have children as a perpetual virgin, but you seem to have forgotten
that this goddess once gave birth to a snake for the Athenians.162
So not only was Athena considered a virgin mother of a divine
serpent as early as the 5th century BCE, but even during the 1st century
CE there was a belief that she also gave virgin birth to human kings as
well. Also, in his letter to Sais, this same Apollonius affirmed that
Athena was identical to Neith:
To the people of Sais: You are descendants of the Athenians,
so Plato says in the Timaeus. They however banish from Attica the
goddess whom they share with you, called Neith by you and
Athena by them.163
Thus, by extension, he affirmed that Neith was indeed a virgin mother,
the very same whom he claimed had borne a serpent child.
The association between serpents, parthenogenesis, and divine birth
is a recurring theme in mythology, several examples of which will come
up again throughout this book. One possible origin for this serpentine
connection to virgin birth is nature itself. In fact, just recently the
scientific journal Biology Letters, of The Royal Society, published a
paper affirming the occurrence of facultative parthenogenesis in snakes
in the wild.164 Of course, this had already been observed among snakes

Philostratus, Apollonius of Tyana, Volume II: Life of Apollonius of Tyana,
Books 5-8, ed. and trans. Christopher P. Jones (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard
University Press, 2005), 261.
Ibid. 269-271. (Emph. added.)
Apollonius of Tyana, Apollonius of Tyana, Volume III: Letters of Apollonius,
Ancient Testimonia, Eusebius Reply to Hierocles, ed. and trans. Christopher P.
Jones (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2006), 65.
Warren Booth et al., Facultative Parthenogenesis Discovered in Wild
Vertebrates, Biology Letters 8, no. 6 (2012): 983-5.
in captivity.165 Thus it is not unreasonable to suspect that ancient people
far preceding the Common Era likewise observed this phenomenon, and
hence why imagery of the serpent was so often used in myths involving
miraculous conception and birth. For example, the Latin poet Ovid,
writing at the turn of the Common Era, recorded a legend in which
serpents were born from the drops of blood that fell from Medusas
severed serpentine head as Perseus carried it across Libya.166 Ovid, as
well as the 1st century historians Pliny the Elder and Plutarch, also wrote
of a belief in which serpents were born from the coagulating marrow of
human corpses.167 Pliny also reported of serpents allegedly born from the
blood of birds, and others born from the viscera of sacrificial victims,
and of a particular breed from Tiryns which was said to be born from the
earth itself.168 Plutarch likewise documented the belief that serpents were
born in full form from out of the earth,169 as did Herodotus (circa 5th
century BCE).170 An obviously related variant, also recorded by Ovid,
told of how the first serpent, Python, was produced parthenogenetically
from the earth goddess, Gaia, when she was impregnated by the heat
from the rays of the sun:

Warren Booth et al., Consecutive Virgin Births in the New World Boid Snake,
the Colombian Rainbow Boa, Epicrates maurus, Journal of Heredity 102, no. 6
(2011): 759-63.
Michael Kearney, Matthew K. Fujita, Jessica Ridenour, Lost Sex in the Reptiles:
Constraints and Correlations, in Lost Sex: The Evolutionary Biology of
Parthenogenesis, eds. I. Schn and K. Martens (Berlin: Springer, 2009), 447-474.
Ovid, Metamorphoses, trans. Stanley Lombardo (Indianapolis: Hackett
Publishing Company, Inc., 2010), 111.
Ibid. 429.
Plutarch, Lives, in Plutarchs Lives: Volume X, trans. B. Perrin (London: William
Heinemann Ltd. and Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1921-59),
Pliny the Elder, Natural History, in Pliny: Natural History, Books 8-11, trans. H.
Rackham, (London: William Heinemann Ltd., and Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard
University Press, 1940-67), 411-13.
Ibid. 159, 381, 555.
Plutarch, Moralia, in Plutarchs Moralia: Volume VIII, trans. P.A. Clement and
H.B. Hoffleit (London: William Heinemann Ltd., and Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard
University Press, 1969), 153.
Herodotus, in Strassler (2009), 45.
So when Mother Earths diluvian mud
Again grew warm under the rays of the sun,
She brought forth innumerable species, restoring some
Of the ancient forms, and creating some new and strange.
She would have rather not, but Earth begot you then,
O Python, greatest of serpents and never before seen,
And a terror to the new people, sprawling over
Half a mountainside.171
Very interesting, given that, as mentioned previously, some myths
portray Gaia as also involved in the virgin birth of Athenas serpent
child. There was also reference here to light from heaven as the
mechanism for conception, which is another recurring motif that will
come up again later on. Like Athena, Gaia also shares a few noteworthy
parallels with Neith. Gaia too was the first female, brought forth at the
beginning of time from the primordial chaos. Since this was at the
beginning, much like Neith, Gaia had no suitable mate with which to
procreate, therefore she brought forth her first children on her own. In
other words, it was yet another legend of virgin birth of divine children.
As per Hesiods Theogony, c. 8th century BCE:
Sing the glories of the holy gods to whom death never comes,
the gods born of Gaia and starry Ouranos,
Chaos was born first and after it came Gaia
the broad-breasted, the firm seat of all
the immortals who hold the peaks of snowy Olympos,
Gaia now first gave birth to starry Ouranos,
her match in size, to encompass all of her,
and be the firm seat of all the blessed gods.
She gave birth to the tall mountains, enchanting haunts
of the divine nymphs who dwell in the woodlands;
and then she bore Pontos, the barren sea with its raging swell.
All these she bore without mating in sweet love.172
It should be noted here, in anticipation of what some antagonistic
heathen might try to retort with, that the translator here, Dr. Apostolos

Ovid, in Lombardo (2010), 18.
Hesiod, Theogony, in Hesiod: Theogony, Works and Days, Shield, trans. A.N.
Athanassakis (Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1983-2004), xii,
14. (Emph. added.)
Athanassakis, clarified that To Hesiod, Earth (Gaia), Sky (Ouranos),
and Sea (Pontos) are not mere elements but gods.173 Therefore any
attempts to try and dismiss this tale of virgin-born gods, far predating the
Common Era, by claiming that these primordial deities of Hesiod are just
abstract elements and thus not comparable to other virgin-born gods
are futile attempts. Regardless, getting back to the point, this is explicitly
stated by Hesiod to be conception without mating. It is only later, after
Gaia has produced several children by herself, does she then select a
mate to further reproduce with. That mate being her first born son,
Uranus, god of the stars, with whom she bore the famous twelve
Titans.174 In that respect, Neith has a similarity with Gaia that she does
not have with Athena, since Neith also did not remain perpetually a
virgin forever,175 unlike Athena, who was typically regarded as eternally
celibate, as previously quoted from Apollonius of Tyana. Neith too was
in some traditions believed to have later taken up consorts.176
Nevertheless, their sexual activity later on in their mythology does not
negate the fact that very ancient sources explicitly regarded these
goddesses as having given virgin births to their first offspring.
Another fact about Neith that is relevant here is that her symbol was
originally the click beetle177 (although later on, due to the similarity of
shape, it came to be identified as a shield).178 Click beetles are now
known to bury their eggs in soil, and once they hatched, the larvae
remain underground for years. It is only when they have matured into

Ibid. 1. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 14.
B.S. Lesko (1999), 58.
Ibid. 270.
Faulkner (1969), 232 (Utt. 577 1521).
Diana C. Patch and Marianne Eaton-Krauss, Dawn of Egyptian Art (New York:
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2011), 150-51, 198-200.
Hans W. Mller and Eberhard Thiem, Gold of the Pharaohs (Ithaca: Cornell
University Press, 1999), 33.
Erik Hornung and Betsy M. Bryan, The Quest for Immortality: Treasures of
Ancient Egypt (New York: Prestal-Verlag, 2002), 106.
Patch (2011), 200.
Pinch (2002-04), 170.
B.S. Lesko (1999), 46, 50.
adults that they emerge from the ground.179 Therefore, to the unaware
observer, it can appear as though the beetles were being born from the
earth itself, without the need for copulation. In other words, click beetles
were likely perceived to be autogenic/parthenogenetic, and thus it is no
wonder that this animal came to be associated with Neith, who also had
these properties.180 Just as Neith was associated with a self-regenerating
beetle, so too was her Son Re, which further corroborates with the fact of
her virgin motherhood. As established earlier, one of Res alter egos was
that of Khepri. As Khepri, Re took on the form of a scarab beetle (Fig.
16), or alternatively, a scarab-headed human (Fig. 17).181 The Egyptians
believed the scarab was androgynous or unisex, and thus by necessity, it
reproduced parthenogenetically. As Plutarch stated in reference to Egypt,
there is no such thing as a female beetle, but all beetles are male.182
This translation specifies in note 51 that this is in reference to The
Egyptian scarab, or sacred beetle. Dr. Bob Brier also affirms this:
Another reason the scarab was held in special regard is that the
ancient Egyptians believed that the beetle had offspring without the
union of male and female. This false belief arose simply because
the Egyptians never saw them copulating. 183
Regarding a depiction of divine birth in a vignette of the corpus
known as the Book of the Earth from the tomb of Ramesses VI (12th cen.
BCE), Dr. Joshua Roberson writes:
Two goddesses minister to an irregularly shaped oval The
oval is identified as nnw.t, a word that originally signified the dung
ball of the scarab beetle. Its use here was doubtless to evoke the
beetles own (perceived) parthenogenesis, and the associated
concepts of solar re-birth.184

Maurice Burton and Robert Burton, International Wildlife Encyclopedia, 3rd
Edition (New York: Marshall Cavendish Corporation, 2002), 466-67.
Susan T. Hollis, 5 Egyptian Goddesses in the Third Millenium BC: Neith,
Hathor, Nut, Isis, Nephthys, KMT: A Modern Journal of Ancient Egypt 5, no. 4
(1994-95): 46-51, 82-85.
Holland (2009), 27, 69.
Plutarch, in Babbitt (1936-62), 29.
Brier (1980-2001), 146.
Joshua Roberson, The Book of the Earth: A Study of Ancient Egyptian
Symbol-Systems and the Evolution of New Kingdom Cosmographic Models
(PhD diss., University of Pennsylvania, 2007), 148-50. (Emph. added.)
It only makes sense then that Re would take on the form of an animal
that was likewise thought to be virgin born, and that He would do so at
dawn, the time of day when He was born again. So Neith was associated
with a parthenogenetic beetle, and her virgin born Son was also
associated with a parthenogenetic beetle.
So the Lord God Amen-Ra created Himself through the agency of a
divine virgin, whom He also created, and thus He is His own Father.
However, this is not the only thing He created. As the Perennial Gospel
declares, He is the almighty Creator of heaven and earth.

Fig. 14: A pair of click beetles, an ancient emblem of Neith, signifying her virgin
motherhood; based on a corner fragment of a cosmetic palette dated to the early 3 rd
millennium BCE, currently at the Cinquantenaire Museum.

Fig. 15: The virgin birth of the scarab from the sun disk of its dung ball (as the
ancient Egyptians perceived it, hence one reason it became a symbol of Re-Khepri).

Fig. 16: A pendant of Khepri from the tomb of Tutankhamun.

Fig. 17

There is but One God, the Father, of Whom are All Things
Amen created the cosmos. He is the omnipotent progenitor of all that
exists. He also created the other gods, who in turn helped contribute to
the act of creation, including the forming of mankind. Thus Amen-Re is
ultimately the all powerful Father of us all, of both god and man alike.
The Great Cairo Hymn to Amen-Re, dated as early as the Second
Intermediate Period,185 declares:
Hail to you, Amon-Re,
Oldest One of heaven, Eldest of earth,
Lord of what exists, enduring all things.
Unique One, like whom among the gods?
Goodly bull of the Ennead,
Chief of all the gods,
Lord of Truth, Father of the gods,
Who made mankind, who created the flocks,
Lord of what exists, who created the tree of life,
Who made the herbage, who vivifies the herd,
Goodly Power, whom Ptah engendered,
Youth, beautiful of love,
To whom the gods speak praise,
Who made what is below and what is above,
illuminating the Two Lands,
Ferried across the sky in peace,
King of Upper and Lower Egypt, Re,
triumphant, Chief of the Two Lands,
Great of strength, Lord of respect,
Chief who made the land in its entirety .
Whose plains are more exalted than those of any god,
At whose beauty the gods rejoice.
Further along in the hymn, it reads:
Jubilation to you, who made the gods,
Who suspended heaven, who laid down the ground !
Awake soundly, Min-Amon,

Robert K. Ritner, The Great Cairo Hymn of Praise to Amun-Re {1.25} P. Cairo
58038 (P. Bulaq 17), in The Context of Scripture: Canonical Compositions from
the Biblical World, Vol. 1, eds. W.W. Halo and K.L. Younger (Leiden: E.J. Brill,
1997), 37.
Lord of eternity, who made endlessness,
Lord of praise, foremost of the [Ennead].
Whose horns are firm, whose face is beautiful,
Lord of solar rays, who made brightness,
To whom the gods speak jubilation,
Who extends His arms to the one He loves,
Hail to you, Re, Lord of the Two Truths,
Whose shrine is hidden, Lord of the gods,
Khepri in the midst of His bark,
Who issued command that the gods might be,
Atum, who made the common man,
Who distinguished their forms, who made their lives,
Who separated the races, one from another,
Who hears the prayer of the one who is in distress,
Graciously disposed when He is entreated.
Who rescues the fearful from the hand of the brazen,
Who judges the wretch and the ruined,
Lord of perception, with effective utterance on his mouth,
Lord of sweetness, rich in love,
Coming so that the common man might live,
Who gives movement to every eye,
Formed in the Abyss,
Whose grace created brightness,
At whose beauty the gods rejoice,
Their hearts living when they see him.
Re, revered in Karnak,
Sovereign life, prosperity, health! Lord of all the gods,
Falcon(?) in the midst of the horizon,
Chief of patricians of the Land of Silence,
Whose name is hidden from His children
In this His name of Amon.
So here is yet another scripture that affirms that Re is Amen, just as
He is Ptah. They are merely different names for the One True God. Here
it is also mentioned that Amen separated the races, i.e., Amen hath
made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the
earth, and has determined the times before appointed, and the bounds
of their habitation. The hymn continues:
Hail to you who are in peace,
Lord of joy, powerful in appearances,
Lord of the uraeus, lofty of plumage,
With beautiful fillet, lofty of White Crown,
You, whom the gods love to see,
The Double Crown fixed on Your brow,
Love of You pervading the Two Lands,
Your rays shining in the eyes.
The patricians are happy when You rise;
The flocks languish when You shine,
Love of You is in the southern heaven,
Your sweetness in the northern heaven.
Your beauty captivates hearts,
Love of You wearying the limbs,
Your beautiful form relaxing the hands.
Thoughts go astray at the sight of you,
You are the Sole One, who made [all] that exists,
One, alone, who made that which is,
From whose two eyes mankind came forth,
On whose mouth the gods came into being .186
Not only does this hymn declare that Amen-Re created all that exists,
and is the Father of the all the gods, but it makes known that He created
everything by the power of His Word. It was upon His mouth that the
gods came into being, for He has effective utterance on His mouth.
He spoke creation into existence. In the beginning was His Word. When
He says Let there be light, there shall be light, for He is Lord of solar
rays, who made brightness.
Returning to the aforementioned Funerary Decree of Amen for
Princess Neskhons, it states:
This noble god, lord of all the gods,
Amon-Re, Lord of the Thrones of the Two Lands, Foremost of
The noble ba-spirit who came into being in the beginning,
The great god who lives on Maat,
The first primeval one, who bore the primeval ones,
From whom every god came into being,
The singly unique one who made what exists,
Who began the earth in the first instant .
Secret of birth and numerous of forms,
Whose hidden image is unknown,

Ibid. 38-39. (Emph. added.)
August power, beloved and revered,
Mighty in his glorious appearances,
Lord of magnificence, powerful of form,
From whose form all forms were formed,
Who began formation, when there was nothing but him ,
Who enlightened the earth in the first instant.
Great solar disk, with streaming rays,
Presenting himself so that everyone might live,
He who crosses the firmament without wearying,
Morning by morning, his custom is fixed.
Elderly one, rising as a youth in the early morning,
Who attains the limits of eternity,
Encircles the firmament and traverses the underworld,
To enlighten the Two Lands, which he has created.
Divine god, who fashioned himself,
Who made heaven and earth in his heart,
Greatest of the great, grandest of the grand,
Great one, greater than the gods,
Youthful bull, with sharp-pointed horns,
At whose great name the Two Lands tremble,
Under whose might eternity comes about,
Who brings an end to infinity,
Great god, who began creation,
Who seized the Two Lands with his strength.
Elsewhere in the text, the decree states:
Lord of strength, sacred of dignity,
Whose body his radiance has hidden,
Whose right eye and left eye are the solar disk and the moon,
Heaven and earth being compounded with his radiant beauty,
Excellent King, who does not slack,
Concerned for rising and setting,
From whose two divine eyes mankind came forth,
And the gods from the utterances of his mouth,
Who made foodstuff, who initiated nourishment,
Who created all that exists.
Eternal one, who traverses the years,
Without limits to his lifespan,
Aged and rejuvenated, who traverses eternity,
Elderly one, who begets his youth,
Who grants the lifetime and doubles the years for the one in his
A good helper for the one who places him in his heart ,
A protector forever and ever,
The King of Upper and Lower Egypt, Amon-Re, King of the Gods,
Lord of heaven, earth, water, and the mountains,
Who began the earth by his transformation ,
Greater is he, more distinguished is he, than all the gods of the first
primeval time.187
Along with yet more affirmation of Gods role as creator of all
existence, there is also mention here once again of the creative power of
His spoken Word, having brought forth the gods with the utterances of
His mouth. It is also important to note here that this scripture makes it
known that in order to receive the Lords help one must invite Amen-Re
into his or her heart. Only then will He become ones personal Lord and
Savior. This can also be seen in the Hymn to Ptah on the Votive Stela of
Neferabu from the New Kingdom Period:
May he give life, prosperity, health,
Alertness, favors, and affection,
And that my eyes may see Amun every day,
As is done for a righteous man,
Who has set Amun in his heart !
Beware of Ptah, Lord of Maat!
Behold, he does not overlook anyones deed!
Refrain from uttering Ptahs name falsely,
Lo, he who utters it falsely, lo he falls!
He caused me to be as the dogs of the street,
I being in his hand;
He made men and gods observe me,
I being as a man who has sinned against his Lord .
Righteous was Ptah, Lord of Maat, toward me,
When he taught a lesson to me!
Be merciful to me, look on me in mercy!188

Ritner (2009), 151-54. (Emph. added.)
Miriam Lichtheim, Ancient Egyptian Literature Volume II: The New Kingdom
(Berkeley: University of California Press, 1976-2006), 104, 109-10. (Emph.
So in His role as Ptah, it is Amen alone Who grants mercy to sinners,
and grants life to those that have invited Him into their hearts. This
scripture also establishes that it is a sin to take the name of the Lord our
God in vain.
Getting back to the point of His role as creator, there are the Karnak
inscriptions of Roma-Roy, a high priest of Lord Amen during the reign
of Ramesses II in the 13th century BCE189:
Giving praise to Amun-Re,
kissing the ground before his perfect face,
by the high priest of Amun,
Roma, true of voice;
He says: I have come before you, lord of the gods, Amun,
who came into being first,
divine god, creator of what exists.190
Dr. Jan Assmann offers the following text from Thebes:
The exalted ba as king of the gods continues
to spend endless time,
while endless duration is before you.
He is the exalted ba, who arose at the beginning
The creator of heaven, earth and the underworld
Who creates life, namely, wind, light, water
and fire of life, from which everything lives.191
Referring again to The Legend of Isis and the Name of Re of the 19th
dynasty, Amen as Re tells the following to Isis:
I am the one who made heaven and earth, who knit together
the mountains, who created that which exists upon it. I am the
one who made the hours so that the days came into being. I am the
one who divided the year, who created the river. I am the one who
made living fire, in order to create the craft of the palace. 192

Elizabeth Frood, Biographical Texts from Ramessid Egypt (Atlanta: Society of
Biblical Literature, 2007), 46.
Ibid. 56. (Emph. added.)
Jan Assmann, Egyptian Solar Religion in the New Kingdom: Re, Amun and the
Crisis of Polytheism, trans. A. Alcock (London: Routledge, 1995-2009), 188-89.
(Emph. added.)
Ritner (1997), 34.
The Coffin Texts, Spell 1130:
Words spoken by Him whose names are secret, the Lord of
All, I made the four winds that everyone might breathe in his
time. I made every man equal to his fellow, and I forbade them
to do wrong, but their hearts disobeyed what I had said. I created
the gods from my sweat, and mankind from the tears of my eye.193
Aside from acknowledging Him as our Creator, and thus our Father,
this scripture also notes that the Lord made every human being to be
equal. Discrimination and prejudice towards our fellow man is not of
God. Moreover, this scripture also teaches that the Lord condemns sin,
yet mans heart, or his very nature, is already inclined to disobey. It is as
though the heart of the sons of men is full of evil and they are by nature
the children of wrath.
The Instruction to King Merikare, dated to somewhere between the
21st to 20th centuries BCE,194 states:
Well tended is mankindgods cattle,
He made sky and earth for their sake,
He subdued the water monster,
He made breath for their noses to live.
They are his images, who came from his body,
He shines in the sky for their sake.195
It is interesting to learn here that God made heaven and earth for us,
for mankind. We are His cattle, and He is our Pastor. He also subdued
the water monster, so the Lord shall punish leviathan the piercing
serpent, even leviathan that crooked serpent; and He shall slay the
dragon that is in the sea. It is also affirmed here that God created man
in His image, in the image of God created He him, and (once again) that
He breathed into his nostrils the breath of life. This scripture was
written in the 2nd millennium BCE, long before any other such text from

Raymond O. Faulkner, The Ancient Egyptian Coffin Texts, Vol. III
(Warminster: Aris & Phillips, Ltd, 1978), 167. (Emph. added.)
Harco Willems, The First Intermediate Period and the Middle Kingdom, in
A Companion to Ancient Egypt Vol. 1, ed. A.B. Lloyd (Oxford: Blackwell
Publishing Ltd., 2010), 83-84.
Lichtheim (1973-2006), 106. (Emph. added.)
the Mediterranean coastal lands containing similar statements was ever

Fig. 18: Slaying the sea monster, that great leviathan, by the command of the Lord.

Fig. 19
Returning to The Memphite Theology of the Old Kingdom Period,
the Lord Amen, in his identity as Ptah, is thus described beginning with
section 53:
For the very great one is Ptah, who gave [life] to all the gods
and their kas through this heart and through this tongue, Sight,
hearing, breathingthey report to the heart, and it makes every
understanding come forth. As to the tongue, it repeats what the
heart has devised. Thus all the gods were born and his Ennead was
completed. For every word of the god came about through what
the heart devised and the tongue commanded .
Thus all the faculties were made and all the qualities
determined, they that make all foods and all provision, through this
word. Thus justice is done to him who does what is loved, and
punishment to him who does what is hated. Thus life is given to
the peaceful, death is given to the criminal. Thus all labor, all crafts
are made, the action of the hands, the motion of the legs, the
movements of all the limbs, according to this command which is
devised by the heart and comes forth on the tongue and creates the
performance of every thing.
Thus it is said of Ptah: He who made all and created the
gods. And he is Ta-tenen, who gave birth to the gods, and from
whom every thing came forth, foods, provisions, divine offerings,
all good things. Thus it is recognized and understood that he is the
mightiest of the gods. Thus Ptah was satisfied after he made all
things and all divine words.196
Here it is seen yet again that the Lord created everything by His will
(devised by the heart) through His spoken Word. It can be said that in
the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the
Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things
were made by Him; and without Him was not any thing made that was
made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men.197

Ibid. 54-55.
James P. Allen, The Celestial Realm, in Ancient Egypt, ed. D.P. Silverman
(New York: Oxford University Press, 1997-2003), 124-25. THE WORD OF GOD
When the creator utters his command, Ptah transforms it into the reality of
the created world This concept of a divine intermediary between creator and
creation is the unique contribution of the Memphite Theology. It preceeded
the Greek notion of the demiurge by several hundred years; it had its ultimate
It is also shown here that all good things are from God, who is also
Amen-Re, God of the sun. Since the Lord God is a sun and no good
thing will He withhold from them that walk uprightly, it may thus be
said that every good and perfect gift is from above, and comes down
from the Father of lights (Fig. 20). As the very next scripture declares,
He is Maker of light for mankind. This is from The Prayers of Paheri,
from around the 15th century BCE,198 which also states:
Amun, Lord of Thrones-of-the-Two-Lands,
King of eternity, lord of everlastingness,
Ruler, lord of the two great plumes,
Sole one, primordial, eldest,
Primeval, without [equal],
[Creator] of men and gods,
Living flame that came from Nun,
[Maker] of light for mankind.199

Fig. 20: Every good & perfect gift comes down from the Father of lights.

expression a thousand years later: In the beginning was the Word, and the
Word was with God, and the Word was God.
Lichtheim (1976-2006), 15.
Ibid. 16. (Emph. added.)
A statue of Montemhet at Karnak of the 7th cen. BCE200 contains the
following inscription:
Hail to you, Amun,
Maker of mankind,
God who created all beings!
Beneficent king,
First one of the Two Lands,
Who planned the eternity he made.
Great in power,
Mighty in awe,
Whose forms are exalted above other gods.
Mighty of strength.201
This inscription contains even more affirmation of God as the Maker
of man, and of all creatures, thus He is Father of all. What is also
recorded here is the fact that the Lord had planned out all eternity before
He made it, i.e., it was foreordained before the foundation of the world,
Amen having declared the end from the beginning, and from ancient
times the things that are not yet done. As that Maker of mankind, it is
revealed that Lord Amen-Re took on His form known as Khnum, in
which state He fashioned man on His potters wheel (Fig. 21). Amen-
Re can be seen identified as Khnum in one of the creator hymns at Hibis
Temple of the 6th cen. BCE, which states:
Great, Secret Hymn to Amen-Re,
Most primeval of the gods,
Eldest of the primeval ones,
Builder of builders,
Renenet of Reneneta,
Khnum, who made the Creator Gods,
effective counsel,
open (?) and sharp of face,
lord of all that exists, who predetermined every event .202
Along with the identification of Khnum as a form of Amen-Re, here
is another reference to divine predestination. Dr. Klotz also comments
that a large portion of this hymn describing Amun-Re as creator

Lichtheim (1980-2006), 29.
Ibid. 30.
Klotz (2006), 136, 142. (Emph. added.)
reappears in various hymns to the similar Khnum-Re of Esna.203 So
turning to those hymns, dated to the Ptolemaic Period,204 the Morning
Hymn to Khnum reads:
Wake well in peace, wake well in peace,
Khnum-Amun, the ancient.205
Now moving to The Great Hymn to Khnum, it states:
Another hymn to Khnum-Re,
God of the potters wheel,
Who settled the land by his handiwork;
Who joins in secret,
Who builds soundly,
He has fashioned gods and men,
He knotted the flow of blood to the bones,
Formed in his workshop as his handiwork,
So the breath of life is within everything,
Blood bound with semen in the bones,
To knit the bones from the start.
Formed all on his potters wheel,
For the lord of the wheel is their father too,
Tatenen who made all that is on their soil.
All your creatures give you thanks,
You are Ptah-Tatenen, creator of creators,
Who is Iunyt brought forth all that is.
He made mankind, created gods,
Beneficient god,
Contenting god,
God who forms bodies,
God who equips nostrils,
God who binds the Two Lands,
So that they join their natures.
They206 are concealed among mankind,
Creating all beings since gods time,
They are alive and abiding,

Ibid. 135.
Lichtheim (1980-2006), 109-10.
Ibid. 110. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 115 n.14. Lichtheim clarifies: As above, Their and They refer to the
manifestations of Khnum.
Like Re rising and setting.207
As the 25th chapter of The Instruction of Amenemope (13th-11th cen.
BCE208) observes:
Man is clay and straw,
The god is his builder.209

Fig. 21: We are the clay, and He our Potter.

Ibid. 112-15. (Emph. added.)
Lichtheim (1976-2006), 147.
Ibid. 160.
Therefore, it is fitting to say of Lord Amen-Re that He is our
Father; we are the clay, and He our Potter, and we all the work of His
hand. Remember, I beseech you, that He hast made us as the clay. For
the Lord God formed man of the clay of the earth, and breathed into
his nostrils the breath of life. I also am formed out of the clay. So
cannot He do with you as this potter? Behold, as the clay is in the
potters hand, so are you in His hand. Hath not the potter power over
the clay? Thus we have this treasure in clay vessels, that the excellency
of that power may be of God, and not of us.
The next scripture is The Instruction of Insinger, also dated to the
Ptolemaic Period.210 Beginning in the 24th instruction, it states:
The teaching of knowing the greatness of the god, so as to put it in
your heart.
Heart and tongue of the wise man, the greatness of their dwelling-
place is being that of the god.
He who says It cannot happen should look to what is hidden.
How do the sun and moon go and come in the sky?
Whence go and come water, fire, and wind?
Through whom do amulet and spell becomes remedies?
The hidden work of the god, he makes it known on the earth daily.
He created light and darkness in which is every creature.
He created the earth, begetting millions, swallowing (them) up and
begetting again.
He created day, month, and year through the commands of the
lord of command.
He created summer and winter through the rising and setting of
He created food before those who are alive, the wonder of the
He created the constellation of those that are in the sky, so that
those on earth should learn them.
He created sweet water in it which all the lands desire.
He created breath in every egg though there is no access to it.
He created birth in every womb from the semen which they
He created sinews and bones out of the same semen.
I have not burned to do evil , my heart, the god knows [it].

Lichtheim (1980-2006), 184.
I have not taken vengeance on another; another has not suffered
on my account.
The sin which I have committed unwittingly, I beg [forgiveness for
I call to the god to have mercy on me and give me sweetness ---.
He removes the worry about prosperity, without there being a
He gives lifetime without despair and a [good] burial.
He relies on your heart on its way in its time ---.211
He created birth in every womb, this might remind one of a text on
the stela of Pianchi (8th cen. BCE). In it, Amen says:
It was in the belly of your mother that I said concerning you
that you were to be ruler of Egypt; it was as a seed and while you
were in the egg, that I knew you, that (I knew) you were to be
Therefore before He formed us in the belly He knew us; and before
we came forth out of the womb He sanctified us. The Lord has called
us from the womb; from the bowels of our mother has He made
mention of our name. Amen is He that took me out of the womb: He
didst make me hope when I was upon my mothers breasts. I was cast
upon Him from birth: He is my God from my mothers womb. By Him
have we been held up from the womb: it is He that took us out of our
mothers bowels: our praise shall be continually of Him. His eyes did
see our unformed fetus, yet being unperfect; and in His book all our
members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as
yet there was none of them. When it pleased Amen, He separated us
from our mothers womb, and called us by His grace.
That is why He is the heavenly Father, our Father, of both men and
gods, and of all that He has made. Hence the Berlin Hymn to Ptah (10th-

Ibid. 209-213.
Gregory Glazov, The Bridling of the Tongue and the Opening of the Mouth in
Biblical Prophecy (Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press Ltd, 2001), 185.
8th, but possibly 13th-11th, cen. BCE213) declares of the Lord in His name
of Ptah:
Greetings, Ptah, father of the gods,
Ta-tenen, eldest of the originals,
who begot himself by himself, without any developing having
who crafted the world in the design of his heart,
when his developments developed.
Model who gave birth to all that is,
begetter who created what exists.214
A cartouche from Amarna of the 14th century BCE likewise says of
Lord Amen-Re, in his form as the sun disk or Aten:
Life to Re, ruler of the two horizons, who rejoices in the
horizon in his name Re, the father who is come as Aten.215
Chapter 80 of the previously cited Papyrus Leiden I 350 says of
Father Amen:
You returned in fathers, maker of their sons,
to make an excellent heritage for your children.216
Our Begetter, our Father is He, just as the Perennial Gospel hath
declared. His essence is made manifest in His offspring. Returning to the
Decree for Neskhons:
Secret of birth and numerous of forms,
From whose form all forms were formed,
He of ba-spirit, who became manifest forms,
His distinctive essence in every god.217

James P. Allen, Genesis in Egypt: The Philosophy of Ancient Egyptian
Creation Accounts, Yale Egyptological Studies 2 (New Haven: Yale University
Press, 1988), 38.
Ibid. 39-40. (Emph. added.)
Peter R.S. Moorey, Ancient Egypt (Oxford: Ashmolean Museum Publications,
1970-92), 27. (Emph. added.)
Erik Hornung, Akhenaten and the Religion of Light, trans. D. Lorton (Ithaca:
Cornell University Press, 1995-99), 76-77.
Hart (1986-2005), 39.
Dungen (2011), 181. (Emph. added.)
Ritner (2009), 151-153. (Emph. added.)
Dr. Glenn Holland comments:
Amun became the dominant god of Egypt during the five
hundred years of the New Kingdom, and among his other
attributes he was designated the transcendent creator . As with
Atum in the Heliopolis creation story, Amun (Hiddenness or
the one who conceals himself) was believed to be the divine
essence present in all the gods , making all the gods essentially
projections or manifestations of Amun .218
Elsewhere Holland adds:
Another sun god was Amen, a primeval deity who was
originally part of the Ogdoad, but who later gained supremacy as
Amen-Re and became the object of widespread, almost exclusive
worship. Amen was very early on a god of Thebes, as weve seen,
together with the god Mantu, the god of war. As Thebes became
politically prominent at the end of the First Intermediate Period,
Amen also became more powerful, and before 2000 BCE, he was
already given the name Amen-Rea composite name that
represented the two aspects of the god.
The name Amen, meaning hiddeness, indicated the
unknowable essence of the god, whose power and authority were
far beyond human understanding. The name Re indicated the
revealed aspect of the god, who shone over the two kingdoms in
the shining radiance of the sun.
After the establishment of the native dynasty following the
expulsion of the Hyksos, the worship of Amen-Re became an
expression of Egyptian power. And two new major shrines were
built for Amen-Re at this time, one at Luxor and the other at
Karnak. During the New Kingdom, Amen-Re was designated king
of the gods, and the other gods were often presented as personified
facets of his divine being. So at times, the worship of Amen-Re
came close to monotheism in practice, if not in theory, as his
worship became almost exclusive and the gods, the other gods that
is, were understood as manifestations of Amen-Re himself.219

Holland (2009), 35. (Emph. added.)
Holland (2005), Lecture. (Emph. added.)
Dr. James P. Allen concurs:
As the only god who is independent of the universe, he is the
true creator: the pre-existing god who thought of the world
through the heart and commanded it to be through the tongue.
For this reason, all other gods of creationAtum and his Ennead,
Ptah-Tatenen, and even the Ogdoad of Hermopolisare really just
aspects of Amun himself.220
Allen also comments on P. Leiden I 350:
Chapter 90 continues the theme of Amuns preeminent
causative role by explaining how the various developments of the
creation in fact derive from, and are manifestations of, Amun
himself. The entire pantheon is nothing more than the sum total
and image of the creator, whose existence precedes theirs (lines C2-
6). The first elements of the creationthe Primeval Mound and the
sunas well as the pre-creation universe that surrounded them, all
emanate from the creation (lines C7-9). The primordial Monad,
and its first development into the void and the sun, are also his
manifestations (lines C10-17). And his was the voice that
pronounced the first creative utterance , shattering the stillness of
nonexistence and setting the entire process of creation in motion
(lines C18-26).221
He elsewhere remarks of the same papyrus:
As he exists outside nature, Amun is the only god by whom
nature could have been created. The text recognizes this by
identifying all the creator gods as manifestations of Amun , the
supreme cause, whose perception and creative utterance, through
the agency of Ptah, precipitated Atums evolution into the world.
The consequence of this view is that all the gods are no more than
aspects of Amun.222
Egyptologist Vincent A. Tobin writes:
During the New Kingdom, the theology of Amun-Re at
Thebes became very complex. His position as king of the gods
increased to a point that approached monotheism . In Amun-Res

J.P. Allen (2000-10), 186.
J.P. Allen (1988), 51-52. (Emph. added.)
J.P. Allen (1997-2003), 127.
most advanced theological expressions, the other gods became
symbols of his power or manifestations of him he himself being
the one and only supreme divine power. This absolute supremacy
of Amun-Re was eloquently expressed in the sun hymns found in
the eighteenth dynasty tombs at Thebes. As Amun, he was secret,
hidden, and mysterious; but as Re, he was visible and revealed.
Although for centuries Egyptian religion had been flexible and
open to contradictory mythological expressions, the Theban
theology of Amun-Re came close to establishing a standard of
orthodoxy in doctrine.223
So getting back to that text, Leiden I 350, chapter 80 reads:
The Eight were your first manifestation,
until You completed these,
You being Single.224
In chapter 90:
The Ennead combined is your body:
Every god joined in your body is your image .
You emerged first, You inaugurated from the start.
ta-Tenen, who formed [Himself] by Himself as Ptah:
The toes of His body are the Eight.
He appeared as Re,
His are the effective forms of the Ennead. 225
Chapter 200 adds:
Re himself is united with His body.
He is the Great One in Heliopolis.
He is called ta-Tenen.
Amun, who comes out of the Nun,
to guide the peoples.
Another of His forms are the Eight ,
primeval one of the primeval ones,
begetter of Re.

Vincent A. Tobin, Amun and Amun-Re, in The Oxford Encyclopedia of
Ancient Egypt: Volume 1, ed. D.B. Redford (New York: Oxford University Press,
2001), 84.
Dungen (2011), 181. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 183. (Emph. added.)
He completed himself as Atum,
being of one body with him. 226
Also recall the previously quoted passage from chapter 300:
All the gods are three:
Amun, Re and Ptah, without their seconds. 227
Thus far it has been shown that the eight gods of the Ogdoad, the
nine gods of the Ennead, and indeed, all the gods, are part of the body of
Amen and are made in His image. All gods are but parts of the whole,
that Whole being the Triune Godhead- Lord Amen-Re-Ptah.
Now returning yet again to the hymns from the Hibis temple, the
Hymn to the Bas of Amun states:
You are Amun,
you are Atum,
you are Khepri,
you are Re.
Sole one who made himself into millions,
Tatenen who came about in the beginning.
You are the one who built his body with his own hands,
In every form of his desire.
You are the great winged-scarab within Nut.228
The Creator Hymn likewise declares:
Great, secret hymn to Amun-Re.
The Ogdoad says:
o sole god, who made himself into millions,
whose length and breadth are [without limit. 229
Dr. Klotz adds:
This description of Amun-Re whose length and width are
without boundaries, yet who is also remote and mysterious of
visible form, as the source of millions should be compared with
the following Hermetic description of god:

Ibid. 187. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 191. (Emph. added.)
Klotz (2006), 191. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 211. (Emph. added.)
For this is his body, neither tangible nor visible nor measurable
nor dimensional nor like any other body; it is not fire nor
water nor air nor spirit, yet all things come from it .230
Returning to The Legend of Isis and the Name of Re, Re speaks the
following words:
I am a noble, son of a noble, the fluid of a god come forth
from a god. I am a great one, son of a great one. My father thought
out my name. I am one who has numerous names and numerous
forms. My form exists as every god.231

Ibid. 138. (Emph. added.)
Ritner (1997), 33. (Emph. added.)
Fig. 22: A pillar from the tomb of Thutmose III, 15th cen. BCE, depicting several
different gods. The accompanying texts reveal that all are just manifestations of Re

A few examples of those forms, aside from those already mentioned,

such as Khnum, are named in the following portion of The Great Hymn
to Khnum:

The diverse forms of Khnum
In First-of-towns he is Ba-of-Re,
At Iunyt he is Ba-of-Shu,
In Shah-hotep he is Ba-of-Osiris,
In Herwer he is Ba-of-Geb,
He is Horus-Metenu in Semenhor,
He changes his form to Lord-of-the-booth,232
He changes his form to Suwadjenba of Pi-neter,
He alters his form to beneficient Nourisher. 233
Other forms are also named here in The Memphite Theology of the
Old Kingdom Period, which states:
The gods who came into being in Ptah:
Ptah-on-the-great-throne ------,
Ptah-Nun, the father who [made] Atum.
Ptah-Naunet, the mother who bore Atum.
Ptah-the-Great is heart and tongue of the Nine [Gods].
[Ptah] ------ who bore the gods.
[Ptah] ------ Nefertem at the nose of Re every day.
There took shape in the heart, there took shape on the tongue
the form of Atum. For the very great one is Ptah, who gave [life] to
all the gods and their kas through this heart and through this
tongue, in which Horus had taken shape as Ptah, in which Thoth
had taken shape as Ptah.
Thus heart and tongue rule over all the limbs in accordance
with the teaching that it (the heart, or: he, Ptah) is in every body
and it (the tongue, or: he, Ptah) is in every mouth of all gods, all
men, all cattle, all creeping things, whatever lives, thinking whatever
it (or: he) wishes and commanding whatever it (or: he) wishes.
His (Ptahs) Ennead is before him as teeth and lips. They are
the semen and the hands of Atum. For the Ennead of Atum came
into being through his semen and his fingers. But the Ennead is the
teeth and lips in this mouth which pronounced the name of every
thing, from which Shu and Tefnut came forth, and which gave birth
to the Ennead.234

Lichtheim (1980-2006), 114.
Lichtheim (1973-2006), 54.
Here can be seen yet more affirmation that the nine gods of the
Ennead are manifestations of aspects of the Lord Himself. It is also
added that Horus and Thoth are also manifested forms of the One True
God as well. This scripture teaches that His Heart is in every body and
that the Word of God is in the mouth of all living creatures. It relates
how all created things are but manifestations of the wishes and thoughts
of His Heart and are given form by His spoken Word. This was also
stated previously from another portion of the Memphite theology, which
declared that everything that takes place is devised by the heart of God
and comes forth on the tongue and creates the performance of every
thing. In other words, it might be said that all things begin as, and are
merely images of, Ideas in the realm of the Intellect of The Good. All
creation emanates from God Himself and thus part of His substance is
within us all. This notion is also expressed in the Harris Magical
Papyrus (c. 13th cen. BCE235):
Greetings, you sole one who makes himself into millions,
who extends in length and breadth without bounds,
equipped power that created itself,
King Amun-Re, may he live, prosper, and be healthy, the self-
Akhty, the eastern Horus,
The one who rises blazing with light,
the light that shines upon the gods.
You have hidden yourself as Amun, the great one,
you have distanced yourself in your embodiment as sun,
Tanen, who elevates himself above the gods:
the self-rejuvenating old one who traverses neheh,
Amun, who abides in all things,
this god who founded the earth through his decision. 236
It cannot be stated any more explicitly than that- Amen abides in all
things. So obvious is this truth that even among those nations outside of
Gods chosen people of Kemet this fact was acknowledged. First, recall

Jan Assman, Magic and Theology in Ancient Egypt, in Envisioning Magic: A
Princeton Seminar and Symposium, eds. P. Schfer and H.G. Kippenberg
(Leiden: Koninklijke Brill NV, 1997), 10.
Jan Assmann, The Search for God in Ancient Egypt, trans. D. Lorton (Ithaca:
Cornell University Press, 1984-2001), 243. (Emph. added.)
how on page 51 it was established that in the ancient Mediterranean
world Lord Amen was identified with the Greco-Roman king of the gods
and of heaven- Zeus, a.k.a. Jupiter, Jove, etc., often times even referred
to collectively as Zeus-Ammon (Fig. 23). That being the case, the Greek
playwright Aeschylus of the 5th century BCE, in his play known as
Daughters of Helios, wrote the following:
Zeus is sky, Zeus is earth, Zeus is heaven;
Zeus is everything and all that is beyond these things. 237

Fig. 23
The Stoic Cleanthes of Assos expressed similar sentiments in his
famous Hymn to Zeus (c. 3rd cen. BCE). For this translation, the editors
begin by adding the following commentary:
The Hymn to Zeus, the longest and most famous of these
fragments, shows how Cleanthes unites philosophical material with
traditional Greek theology and myth by equating Zeus with logos
(reason, the divine power that, according to Stoic cosmology,
permeates the whole universe and orders and controls all things.
Also important for this poem is the Stoic idea of divine providence,
whereby all things in the world are predetermined. Even morally
base actions (and their punishments) have a part in the divine plan.

Stephen M. Trzaskoma et al., Anthology of Classical Myth: Primary Sources
in Translation (Indianapolis: Hackett Publishing Company, Inc., 2004), 5. (Emph.
Thus, to Cleanthes mind, Zeus is nothing other than this logos, the
supreme divine force guiding our world, put into mythical form.
The text itself reads:
Most honored of immortals, many-named, all-powerful always,
Zeus! Source of all things, directing all things according to law,
hail! It is right for all mortals to address you
since you provided the power of speech to them
alone of all things that live and crawl along the earth.
For this I will hymn you without end and sing of your power.
This whole universe spinning about the earth
obeys you, wherever you lead it, and meekly accepts your mastery.
Such is the servant you hold in your unconquerable hands,
the double-edged, fiery, everlasting thunderbolt.
Everything is brought to pass beneath its threat.
With it you guide the universal force that pervades everything ,
intermixed with both great and small lights.
With it you have become the supreme king for time eternal.
Nothing happens apart from you, God,
on earth or in the divine vault of heaven or the sea,
save for what wicked men do in their folly.
But yours is the skill to make the uneven even,
the disorderly orderly and the unpleasing pleasing to you.
Thus you have harmonized all goodness and wickedness into one,
so that there is for all things a single, everlasting force,
which every wicked mortal flees and rejects. 238
Other ancient Stoics shared in such views, such as Zeno of Citium
(4 cen. BCE), Chrysippus of Soli (3rd cen. BCE), Antipater of Tarsus

(2nd cen. BCE), Posidonius (2nd-1st cen. BCE), and Bothus of Sidon (2nd
cen. BCE),239 as preserved by the 3rd century historian Diogenes Lartius.
In his seventh book on the Lives and Opinions of the Eminent
Philosophers, section 147, he wrote:
The deity, say they, is a living being, immortal, rational, perfect
or intelligent in happiness, admitting nothing evil [into him], taking
providential care of the world and all that therein is, but he is not of

Ibid. 84-85. (Emph. added.)
John Sellar, Stoicism (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2006), 159-
human shape. He is, however, the artificer of the universe and, as it
were, the father of all, both in general and in that particular part of
him which is all-pervading, and which is called many names
according to its various powers. They give the name Dia ()
because all things are due to () him ; Zeus () in so far as he
is the cause of life () or pervades all life ; the name Athena is
given, because the ruling part of the divinity extends to the aether ;
the name Hera marks its extension to the air ; he is called
Hephaestus since it spreads to the creative fire ; Poseidon, since it
stretches to the sea ; Demeter, since it reaches to the earth.
Similarly men have given the deity his other titles, fastening, as best
they can, on some one or other of his peculiar attributes.
The substance of God is declared by Zeno to be the whole
world and the heaven, as well as by Chrysippus in his first book Of
the Gods, and by Posidonius in his first book with the same title.
Again, Antipater in the seventh book of his work On the
Cosmos says that the substance of God is akin to air, while Bothus
in his work On Nature speaks of the sphere of the fixed stars as the
substance of God.240
Next will be the 1st century BCE241 Latin poet Publius Vergilius
Maro, or simply Virgil. In his work known as the Ecalogues, beginning
at 3.60, it is declared that all things are full of Jove. He cares for the
earth, and my songs are dear to him.242 Then in Georgics 4.221-27,
Virgil writes:
For God (they hold) pervades
All lands, the widespread seas, the abysms of unplumbed sky:
From Whom flocks, herds, men, every wild creature in its kind
Derive at birth the slight, precarious breath of life:
To Him, therefore, all things return at last and in Him
Are reabsorbedno room for deathand they soar to join

Lois P. Pojman and Michael Rea, Philosophy of Religion: An Anthology, Sixth
Edition (Boston: Wadsworth, 2003-12), 10. (Emph. added.)
Thomas K. Hubbard, The Pipes of Pan: Intertextuality & Literary Filiation in
the Pastoral Tradition from Theocritus to Milton (Ann Arbor: The University of
Michigan Press, 1998 ), 85.
Ibid. 73, 170-71. (Emph. added.)
The stars immortal muster, and reach the heights of heaven. 243
Hence it can be said that in Amen we revere that Jupiter of whom
Virgil says that All things are full of Jove, that is to say, the spirit of
life that vivifies all things. It is not without reason, therefore, that
Varro believed that this same God was worshipped, although called
by another name, even by those who worship one God alone without
any image (after all, Amen is hidden) ... and he judged that it
mattered not what name was employed, provided the same subject was
understood under it. It might also be said that the same almost are the
opinions also which are ours, for we both know and speak of a God,
Amen, who is parent of all. Just as certain also of other poets have said,
For we are also His offspring, For in Him we live, and move, and
have our being.
These poets are, of course, Aratus and Epimenides, the former of
which wrote Phaenomena in the 3rd century BCE, and it states:
From Zeus let us begin; him do we mortals never leave
unnamed; full of Zeus are all the streets and all the market-places
of men; full is the sea and the havens thereof; always we all have
need of Zeus. For we are also his offspring .244
Epimindes wrote Cretica in around the 6th century BCE.245 In it, the
character Minos offers the following rebuke to the Cretans and their
claims that, much like in the tales of Attis and Adonis, Zeus was once a
mortal human who was killed by a boar, and that his dead body was
buried there in Crete:
The Cretans carve a Tomb for thee, O holy and high! liars!
evil beasts, and slow bellies; for thou art not dead for ever; thou art

Virgil, in Virgil: The Eclogues, The Georgics, trans. C.D. Lewis (Oxford: Oxford
University Press, 1940-83), 116. (Emph. added.)
Aratus, Phaenomena, in Callimachus: Hymns and Epigrams, Lycophron,
Aratus, trans. G.R. Mair (London: William Heinemann Ltd., and Cambridge,
Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1921-89), 207. (Emph. added.)
Hugh Bowden, Classical Athens and the Delphic Oracle: Divination and
Democracy (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005), 110.
alive and risen; for in thee we live and are moved, and have our
Thus even the heathen have confessed, albeit by various names, that
He be not far from every one of us, for all things are full of Him. Amen
is before all things, and by Him all things consist. Can any hide
himself in secret places that Amen shall not see him? Does not He fill
heaven and earth? Whither shall we go from His spirit? Or whither
shall we flee from His presence? If we ascend into heaven, He is there:
if we make my bed in hell, behold, He is there. If I take the wings of the
morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; even there shall
His hand lead me, and His right hand shall hold me.
He is that one to whom, in the midst of Mars hill at Athens, was
dedicated an altar with this inscription- To The Unknown God.
Whom therefore the heathen did ignorantly worship, Him declare I
unto you. This Unknown God, attested to by Apollonius, Pausanias,
and Lucian,247 is none other than Lord Amen, for as already shown, his
very name means hidden, which indicated the unknowable essence of
the god. It is Amen who the scriptures declare is secret of form, who is
unknown, who has hidden himself from all the gods, who has set himself
apart as the solar disk, yet who is unknown and secret of birth and
numerous of forms, whose hidden image is unknown and whose origin
is unknown.
It is that Unknown God, Amen, that created all things from out of
His own self, and thus we each have a portion of Him within us.
Therefore it is through Amen that all of the gods are ultimately

Epimenides, Cretica, in The Commentaries of Ishodad of Merv, Bishop of
Hadatha (c. 850 A.D.) In Syriac and English Vol. 4, ed. M.D. Gibson (Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press, 1913-2011), 29. (Emph. added.)
Jones (2005), 101.
Jones (1918-92), 7.
Pausanias, Description of Greece: Books 3-5, trans. W.H.S. Jones and H.A.
Ormerod (London: William Heinemann Ltd., and Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard
University Press, 1926-93), 463.
Lucian, Philopatris, in Lucian: Volume VIII, trans. M.D. MacLeod (London:
William Heinemann Ltd., and Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press,
1967-79), 465.

connected, and not only the gods, but all of us are connected by Amen
our Father as well. Just like the scriptures testify that the Ennead, the
Ogdoad, and even every god is joined in [Amens] body, so also we
are members of His Body, of His Flesh, and of His Bones. What?
Know ye not that your body is the temple of His Holy Spirit which is in
you, which ye have of Amen, and ye are not your own? Now ye are the
Body of Amen, and members in particular. Amen, I say unto you, for
the sake of the race of men, because it is material, has torn Himself
asunder and brought unto them all the mysteries of the Light, that He
may purify them. May He gather that torn Body together; gather His
children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her
wings. May Amen save all His Members (Limbs), which since the
foundation of the world have been scattered abroad in all the rulers,
ministers, and workmen of this on, and gather them all together and
receive them into the Light, so that in the dispensation of the fullness
of times He might gather together in one all things in Himself, both
which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in Him.
So we should all pray that He should gather together in one the
children of God that were scattered abroad. Pray that He gather
together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the
other. Just as bread, even the bread of our holy communion, was once
grain that was dispersed over the mountains, and being collected
became one, so may His congregation be gathered together from the
ends of the earth into His kingdom. That we all may be one; as Thou,
Father, art in Your Son, and Your Son in You, that we also may be one
in You, that we may be one, even as You both are One. For as the body
is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body,
being many, are one body: so also is Amen.
Let us pray that God hath tempered the Body together, having given
more abundant honor to that part which lacked, that there should be
no schism in the Body; but that the members should have the same
care one for another. Endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit of
Amen in the bond of peace. There is one Body, and one Spirit, even as
ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one
baptism, One God and Father of all- Amen, Who is above all, and
through all, and in you all.

Chapter Two
And in the Qrst,248
His Begotten Son, our Lord

In the Beginning
These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when
they were created, in the time that the Lord God Amen made the earth
and the heavens. In the beginning God created the heavens and the
earth. Amen-Re-Ptah is His name.249 He became Ogdoad, the Eight.250
The One gives way to four pairs of primordial creatures, the
Ogdoad, whose names indicate that they belong to the realm of the
uncreated: primeval flood, hiddenness, endlessness, the
undifferentiated ones.
Dr. Erik Hornung, Idea Into Image: Essays on Ancient
Egyptian Thought 251
Ultimately, according to the account of P. Berlin 13603, all
eight members of the Ogdoad are assimilated within a single being
who incorporates both the male and the female members. That
being in question is Amun. One finds this identification already in
the hymn to that god preserved in P. Leiden I 350 (temp.
Ramesses II), where he is told Xmny.w Xprw=k tpy r km=k nn iw=k
waty, The Ogdoad were your initial form, until you completed
these, being one. Elsewhere in the same papyrus, it is said of the
god: ky Xprw=fm Xmny.w, Another of his forms is the Ogdoad.
In a further passage, Amun is called wa waw nTri imn rn=f imy nTr
A, the sole unique one, divine, who concealed his name among the
eight gods.
Dr. Mark J. Smith, On the Primeval Ocean 252

See p.329, n.994.
See pp.42-44, 88-92.
See p.90-91.
J.P. Allen (2000-10), 186.
Dungen (2011), 187.
Erik Hornung, Idea Into Image: Essays on Ancient Egyptian Thought, trans. E.
Bredeck (New York: Timken Publishers, Inc., 1989-92), 41. (Emph. added.)
They were called the [Ogdoad] Here are their names:
Amun, Amaunet, Heh, Hauhet, Kek, Kauket, Nun, [and Naunet].
These again are [the names] of the eight divinities.
Papyrus Carlsberg 302 (1) 253
Amun and Amaunet were hiddenness, Huh and Hauhet were
formlessness, Kuk and Kauket were darkness, and Nun and
Naunet were the watery abyss.
Dr. Leonard H. Lesko, in Religion in Ancient Egypt: Gods,
Myths and Personal Practice 254
O you Eight Chaos-gods, being veritable Chaos-gods in
chaos, in the Abyss, in darkness and in gloom.
Coffin Texts, Spell 80 I, 27 255
This pre-creation universe was the subject of speculation quite
early in Egyptian history. Viewing it as the opposite of the known,
created world, theologians codified several of its essential features,
in a series of abstract concepts: wateriness ( nwj), or inertia (nnw),
the most basic qualities, enshrined in the names of the waters (Nu,
Nun); infinity (hhw); darkness (kkw); uncertainty (tnmw, literally
lostness) or hiddenness (jmnw). These four qualities first appear
as a group in the funerary Coffin Texts ca. 2000BCE and two of
its divine pairs (Nun and Naunet, Amun and Amaunet) appear in
the Pyramid Texts from ca. 2350BCE.
Together with the universal waters, the gods of the Ogdoad
were thought to have existed before the creation. The theologians
of Hermopolis viewed the qualities that they represented as a
negative image of the created world. The pre-creation universe was
watery, inert, infinite, dark and uncertain or hidden, in contrast to
the created world, which was dry, active, limited, light and tangible.
These contrasts formed a dynamic tension between the negative
potentiality of the universe before creation and the positive reality
of the created world. To the theologians of Hermopolis, this
tension contributed to the inevitability of creation itself. As a result,
the gods of the Ogdoad were venerated as creator-deities: the

Mark J. Smith, On the Primeval Ocean (Copenhagen: Museum Tusculanum
Press, 2002), 51. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 32.
Leonard H. Lesko, Ancient Egyptian Cosmogonies and Cosmology, in
Religion in Ancient Egypt: Gods, Myths, and Personal Practice, ed. B.E. Shafer
(Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1991), 95.
Faulkner (1973), 83. (Emph. added.)
fathers and mothers who were before the original gods, who
evolved first, the ancestors of the sun.
Dr. James P. Allen, in Ancient Egypt 256
In the Middle Egyptian city of Hermopolis (Khemenu), an
emphasis was placed on the great abyss of nothingness out of which
creation came. This primordial chaos, the primeval waters or abyss,
was made up of the four pairs that together were the Hermopolitan
pantheon of eight, the Ogdoad.
Dr. David A. Leeming, Jealous Gods and Chosen People: The
Mythology of the Middle East 257
Now the important thing about this myth is to gather what, just
what, are the Egyptians trying to tell us. Eight gods in the water?
No, theyre telling us more. Think about the attributes-
formlessness, darkness, hiddenness. In the beginning was chaos.
These are not, sort of, user friendly termshiddenness, darkness,
formlessnesstheyre not positive attributes. Theyre negative. So in
the beginning we have chaos, and thats the Eight. Thats the
beginning of the universe.
Dr. Bob Brier, History of Ancient Egypt 258

J.P. Allen (1997-2003), 120-21.
David A. Leeming, Jealous Gods and Chosen People: The Mythology of the
Middle East (New York: Oxford University Press, 2004), 69-70. (Emph. added.)
Bob Brier, History of Ancient Egypt (Chantilly: The Teaching Company LLC,
1999), Lecture 3.
Fig. 24: Illustrating Amen as the Primordial Chaos

So all was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face
of the deep. And the breath of God moved upon the face of the waters.
From those living waters rose Neith, the Mother of God.259 The Lord
divided the waters and let the dry land appear. Thus arose the primeval
mound, that great pyramidion- the Benben stone.260 There that blessed
virgin delivered Re, God the Son, begotten of Amen,261 who became Re-

See pp.50-72.
Nicolas Grimal, A History of Ancient Egypt (Oxford: Blackwell Publishers Ltd,
1988-2001), 42, 124, 127, 396, 401.
Charlotte Booth, Travellers Guide to the Ancient World: Egypt in the Year 1200
BCE (Hove: Quid Publishing, 2008), 74, 82, 150, 152.
Remler (2000-10), 28-29, 138, 154, 156, 157.
Pinch (2002-04), 180, 227.
Morkot (2005), 39.
See pp.44-48, 89-90.
Atum.262 Atum, the eldest of the Ennead and Father of the gods, hatched
forth from that great Benben stone.
O Atum-Khoprer, you became high on the height, you rose up
as the bnbn-stone in the Mansion of the Phoenix in On.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 600 1652 263
Among the many forms of the Egyptian cosmogonies is the
familiar figure of the cosmic egg, a substitute for the primeval
waters or the primeval mound. There were people who believed in
the cosmic egg as the soulperhaps the male soul, Atum or Shuof
the original maternal waters One variant of the cosmic egg
version teaches that the sun god, as primeval power, emerged from
the primeval mound, which itself stood in the chaos of the primeval
In spite of a constant development over the centuries, certain
aspects of an Egyptian creation myth can be said to be relatively
constant. These include a source of all things in the primeval
waters, themselves a remnant of the Great Mother , and the
presence of an Eye, the sun, that creates cosmos within the chaos
of the surrounding waters. The sun, whether Atum, Re, or Ptah, is
also associated with a primeval mound or hill, much like the little
fertile mounds left by the receding Nile after the annual floods and
perhaps like the early sun coming over the horizon. The mound
was symbolized by the great pyramids. The people of Heliopolis
said their city was the primal mound; the center of creation.
Some ancient Egyptians considered the cosmic egg to be the
soul of the original primeval waters of creation. One story has it
that the sun god, as ultimate power, emerged from the primeval
mound, itself a version of the cosmic egg resting in the chaos of the
primeval sea.
Dr. David A. Leeming, Creation Myths of the World:
An Encyclopedia 264
In the Neith cosmogony at Esna, the sun god is said to emerge
from an egg fertilized in the Primeval Ocean, one which contains
the exudations of the body of Neith.

Faulkner (1969), 246.
David A. Leeming, Creation Myths of the World: An Encyclopedia (Santa
Barbara: ABC-CLIO, LLC, 1994-2009), 104-05, 313. (Emph. added.)
Dr. Mark J. Smith, On the Primeval Ocean 265
You are Amun,
you are Atum
while rising from Nun within the primeval mound.
Your ancient throne is the mound of Hermopolis,
It is from the lake of Two Knives that you reach land.
It is from the water surface that you appear in the hidden egg,
Amunet being with you.
The Hibis Hymn to the Bas of Amun 266
At Hermopolis, four male and female pairs of divine beings
representing aspects of the cosmos before creation comprised an
ogdoad (eight gods), which produced an egg that developed on an
island that appeared in the middle of the Nile as the flood receded;
from this egg, the creator god was born.
Dr. Leonard H. Lesko, in Encyclopedia of the Archaeology of
Ancient Egypt 267
The Primeval Mound was the first land to rise above the
primeval ocean at the dawn of time. The Primeval Mound was the
place where the spirit of the creator could take on a form and begin
the work of creation. The mound remained the center of the
cosmos and a place of continuous creation. It could be shown as a
rounded or stepped mound. The pyramidion-shaped benben stone
of Heliopolis may also have been an image of the Primeval
Mound. The god who embodied the Mound was Tatjenen
Mounds featured in many different creation myths. In
Memphis, Tatjenen was worshipped as a form of the creator god
Ptah. At Thebes he became a form of Amun. A high hill of sand is
mentioned in the cosmology of Heliopolis. Atum, or his erect
penis, was sometimes identified with this hill. At Hermopolis, the
primeval forces known as the Ogdoad came together to form a
mound or an island as a place for the primeval egg.

Smith (2002), 60. (Emph. added.)
Klotz (2006), 191, 203.
Leonard H. Lesko, Mythology, in Encyclopedia of the Archaeology of
Ancient Egypt, ed. K.A. Bard (London: Routledge, 1999), 663.
Dr. Geraldine Pinch, Egyptian Mythology: A Guide to the Gods,
Goddesses, and Traditions of Ancient Egypt 268
For Egyptians creation was imagined in terms of the inundating
waters of the Nile as they receded each year to reveal hillocks of
mud that quickly teemed with life under a tropical sun. The
moment when existence differentiated itself from nonexistence was
termed the first time and was represented as a mound or hill
emerging from the watery void. On this hill the creator first
manifested himselfan event that could be represented
iconographically as a child emerging from an egg or from an
opening bud of a lotus flower, or as a bird perched upon the
moundthen he created the world as well as the divine pantheon.
The place where creation began was given various names
primeval hill, sacred mound, place of coming forth,and its
symbolism was potent and ubiquitous in Egyptian writing as well as
in artistic representation. The pyramid was intended to
reproduce not only the shape of the primeval hill, but also its ability
to rejuvenate. The hill was early fetishized as a conical stone, called
bn-bn. Via a series of verbal and iconic similarities the bn-bn
could be associated with the sun-god: wbn means to shine, and
the stone emerging from the waters resembled the sun rising on the
eastern horizon. The sun-god, too, could be portrayed as emerging
from an egg that sat upon this hill, or as the bnw-bird (probably a
heron) perched upon the bn-bn.
Dr. Susan A. Stephens, Seeing Double: Intercultural Poetics
in Ptolemaic Alexandria 269
The creator drifts in this primeval morass without finding a fast
hold. But gradually the mud of the primordial flood becomes a
single mass and rises as a hillan image that the Egyptians had
before their eyes every autumn, when the annual Nile floods
receded. Firm ground separates itself from the watery mass; the
creator can stand on such ground, and his work can begin. The
sun emerges from the center of these beings, and as it rises for the
first time it signals the beginning of the world. The motif of
emergence, associated with the image of a mound of earth, is
reflected in the pyramids.

Pinch (2002-04), 180.
Susan A. Stephens, Seeing Double: Intercultural Poetics in Ptolemaic
Alexandria (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2003), 59. (Emph. added.)
Dr. Erik Hornung, Idea Into Image: Essays on Ancient
Egyptian Thought 270
At one particular moment, the eight components of the
Ogdoad interact to break the laws governing chaos and out of the
new order they generate the primeval mound of silt on which the
sun god, Amun, in a new role, is to be born from a cosmic egg.
This mound later becomes Hermopolis.
Dr. William G. Doty, Myth: A Handbook 271
Thus the first male born in creation arose from the land or earth
and was named Atum. That sounds somewhat similar to other legends of
creations first-born male arising from the earth, and had a similar
sounding name. It would also seem that similar legends of a creator
gathering the primordial waters together to cause dry land to form were
inspired by Gods natural metaphor of the receding of the Nile (or other
inundating bodies of water) after the flood season.

Hornung (1989-92), 41.
William G. Doty, Myth: A Handbook (Westport: Greenwood Press, 2004), 56.
(Emph. added.)
Fig. 25: The birth of the sun upon the primeval mound, surrounded by the waters of the
Nun. The Ogdoad can be seen terraforming the mound; from the Book of the Dead of
Khensumose, 11th-10th century BCE.

After His own birth, Re-Atum took His creative organ in His hand
and drank of His own divine seed, then spit it out into the void. From that
spittle He begot Shu and Tefnut, god of the air and goddess of moisture.
Thus the atmosphere was born. (Also born was the motif of divine spittle
having creative and regenerative powers.) As the scriptures have
O Atum you spat out Shu, you expectorated Tefenet, and
you set your arms about them as the arms of a ka-symbol, that your
essence might be in them.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 600 1652-3 272

Faulkner (1969), 246.
Atum is he who (once) came into being, who masturbated in
On. He took his phallus in his grasp that he might create orgasm by
means of it, and so were born the twins Shu and Tefenet.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 527 1248 273
Shu then separated the Ogdoad of Amen and gave them form.
O you Eight Chaos-gods, being veritable Chaos-gods, who
encircle the sky with your arms, who gather together sky and earth
for Geb, Shu fashioned you in chaos, in the Abyss, in darkness and
in gloom.
Coffin Texts, Spell 80 I, 27-8 274
In the beginning, the Ogdoad existed only as a force of power
but then took the form of frogs and serpents.
Patricia Remler, Egyptian Mythology: A to Z 275
These deities were represented anthropomorphically at a
much later date, but in their original conception seem to have been
chthonic at least and perhaps better considered as elements of pre-
creation chaos.
Dr. Leonard H. Lesko, in Encyclopedia of the Archaeology of
Ancient Egypt 276

Shu also begot by Tefnut his children Nut and Geb. The Lord then
made there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide
the waters from the waters. And God made the firmament, and divided
the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which
were above the firmament: and it was so.277 And God called the

Ibid. 198.
Faulkner (1973), 83. (Emph. added.)
Remler (2000-10), 140. (Emph. added.)
L.H. Lesko (1999), 663.
Book of the Dead, Spell 17 a S 12.
J.P. Allen (1988), 1, 4-5, 7, 19-20, 56-58.
J.P. Allen (2000-10), 21-22, 148.
Eliana M. Laborinho, Nun, The Primeval Water According to the Coffin Texts,
in Lacqua nellantico Egitto: Proceedings of the First International Conference
for Young Egyptologists, eds. A. Amenta, M.M. Luiselli, and M.N. Sordi (Rome:
Lerma di Bretschneider, 2005), 221.
firmament Heaven, or sky. He made Nut to be goddess over the sky,
and He made Geb to be god over the earth. Thus the heavens and the
earth were finished, and all the host of them.

Fig. 26: Shu raising the sky of Nut, seen here in bovine form, and sets it in place as a
firmament separating the waters above from the waters below. Assisting him are the
eight members of the Ogdoad, now separated and given anthropoid forms. Along the
belly sails the barque of the sun god; based on the Book of the Celestial Cow, 14th-11th
century BCE.

The Ennead

These are the generations of the Great Ennead.

The best-known and most important such group is the ennead

of Heliopolis, which has a clear genealogical structure spanning
four generations. At the top is Atum, the sun-god of Heliopolis,
who created his progeny Shu, god of air, and Shus wife Tefnut out
of himself. The third generation consists of Geb, god of the earth,
and Nut, goddess of the sky. Together with the fourth generation

Osiris, Seth, Isis, and Nephthysthey make up a group that does in
fact consist of nine members.
Dr. Christian Leitz, in Religions of the World: A Guide 278
O you Great Ennead which is on On, (namely) Atum, Shu,
Tefenet, Geb, Nut, Osiris, Isis, Seth, and Nephthys; O you
children of Atum.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 600 1655 279
For the Ennead of Atum came into being through his semen
and his fingers. But the Ennead is the teeth and lips in this mouth
which pronounced the name of every thing, from which Shu and
Tefnut came forth, and which gave birth to the Ennead.
The Memphite Theology, 55-56 280
I am Shu who came forth from Atum.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 360 603 281
O Geb, son of Shu, this is Osiris the King; may your mothers
heart quiver over you in your name of Geb, for you are the eldest
son of Shu, his first-born.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 592 1615 282
Nut the great Your father Shu knows that you love the King
more than your mother Tefenet.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 7 5 283
Recitation by Nut, the greatly beneficent: The King is my
eldest son who split open my womb; he is my beloved, with whom
I am well pleased.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 1 1 284

Christian Leitz, Deities and Demons: Egypt, in Religions of the Ancient
World: A Guide, ed. S.I. Johnston (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press,
2004), 394.
Faulkner (1969), 247.
Lichtheim (1973-2006), 54.
Faulkner (1969), 117.
Ibid. 243
Ibid. 2.
O Osiris the King, Your mother Nut has borne you.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 366 626 285
O Osiris the King, you are the eldest son of Geb, his first-born
and his heir.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 641 1814 286
[I have protected] Osiris from his brother Seth.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 485B 1034-5 287
Geb has brought your two sisters to your side for you, namely
Isis and Nephthys.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 356 577 288
Osiris The two sisters who love you are Isis and Nephthys.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 691B 2127 289
O Geb, this one here is your son Osiris
O Nut, this one here is your son Osiris
O Isis, this one here is your brother Osiris
O Seth, this one here is your brother Osiris
O Nephthys, this one here is your brother Osiris.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 219 170-4 290

Thus concludes the generations of the Great Ennead, and of Osiris,

being (as was supposed) the son of Geb, the son of Shu, the son of
Atum, who was also Re, the Son of God.

Ibid. 1. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 120.
Ibid. 265.
Ibid. 172.
Ibid. 114.
Ibid. 301-02.
Ibid. 46-47.
Fig. 27

King of Kings and Lord of Lords
As the One True God, Amen is naturally the Lord and King of all
creation. As the hypostasis and first begotten Son of God, Re-Atum
shares this authority with His Father Amen, ruling with Him upon His
throne as coregent.
So did you establish your throne in Ankhtawy,
As Amun-Re, Ba Lord of the firmament.
The Great Amen Hymn at Hibis 291
Hail to you, Amon-Re,
Lord of what exists, enduring all things.
Chief of all the gods,
Lord of Truth, Father of the gods,
Who made mankind, who created the flocks,
Lord of what exists, who created the tree of life.
Lord of eternity.
Hail to you, Re, Lord of the Two Truths,
Whose shrine is hidden, Lord of the gods,
Khepri in the midst of His bark,
Who issued command that the gods might be,
Atum, who made the common man, ...
Sovereign life, prosperity, health! Lord of all the gods.
The Great Cairo Hymn to Amen-Re 292
This noble god, lord of all the gods,
Amon-Re, Lord of the Thrones of the Two Lands.
The King of Upper and Lower Egypt, Amon-Re, King of the Gods,
Lord of heaven, earth, water, and the mountains.
The Funerary Decree of Amen for Princess Neskhons 293
I have come before you, lord of the gods, Amun.
Inscriptions of High Priest Roma-Roy at Karnak 294
Words spoken by Him whose names are secret, the Lord of All.
Coffin Texts, Spell 1130 VII, 461 295

See p.43.
See pp.74.
See p.75, 77.
See p.78.
See p.79.
Amun, Lord of Thrones-of-the-Two-Lands,
King of eternity, lord of everlastingness,
Ruler, lord of the two great plumes.
The Prayers of Paheri 296
Great, Secret Hymn to Amen-Re,
lord of all that exists, who predetermined every event.
The Creator Hymn at Hibis 297
Re-Horakhty, great god, lord of the sky.
Giza Stela of Tia, overseer of the treasury, Face 1 298
Re-Horachty-Atum, Lord of the Two Lands, the Heliopolitan,
the Great God, Lord of heaven.
Gebel Es-Silsilah Quarry Stela No. 100, 19-22 299
Atum, Lord of Heliopolis, great god, Lord of heaven.
Bubastis Temple Inscriptions: Bastet Temple,
Label for Atum 300
Lord Re-Atum eventually chose a successor of His own to pass on
His authority to. That successor was Geb, the god of the earth.
O Geb, son of Shu you are the sole great god. Atum has
given you his heritage, he has given to you the assembled Ennead,
and Atum himself is with them, whom his eldest twin children
joined to you; he sees you powerful chiefest of the gods, you
standing on earth that you may govern at the head of the Ennead.
May you have power over the Ennead and all the gods you
having appeared as King of Upper and Lower Egypt and having
power over all the gods.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 595 1615-26 301

See p.82.
See p.83.
Frood (2007), 162-63.
Ritner, (2009), 189.
Ibid. 245.
Faulkner (1969), 243.
In turn, Geb then chose a successor of his own as well, which was
his eldest son Osiris- the Qrst.302
O Osiris the King, you are the eldest son of Geb, his first-born
and his heir. O Osiris the King, you are he who succeeded him,
and the heritage was given to you by the Ennead, for you have
power over the Ennead and every god. [I give you the crown of
Upper Egypt, the Eye which went up from your head; I give you
the crown of Lower Egypt, the Eye] which went up from your head.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 641 1813-16 303
Stand up in front of the gods, O eldest son, as heir, as one
upon the throne of Geb.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 578 1538 304
Recitation by Nut the great who dwells in the Lower Mansion:
The King is my beloved son, my first-born upon the throne of Geb,
with whom he is well pleased, and he has given to him his heritage
in the presence of the Great Ennead.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 3 2 305
Rise early in the morning, for the noble one appears, the heir
of the Two Lands. There is given [] all of it, the thrones of Geb.
Coffin Texts, Spell 54 I, 243-44 306
Osiris was established on the throne of Geb.
The Saqqara Tomb of the Chief Goldsmith, Amenemone, 20A 307
After having inherited the earthly throne of Geb, Osiris was
said to have civilized Egypt and then went out to do the same to the
rest of the world.
Noreen Doyle, in National Geographic: Essential Visual History of
World Mythology 308

See p.329, n.994.
Faulkner (1969), 265.
Ibid. 234.
Ibid. 1.
Faulkner (1973), 53. Faulkner adds in note 2 that the reference to the heir
of the Two Lands in the next clause suggests that here Osiris as heir of Geb is
Frood (2007), 131.
Touching on that last point there, one often overlooked, and sparsely
attested to, feature of Osiris is that he was a travelling teacher, an
itinerant sage of sorts. It was reported that he brought wisdom, morality,
and religion to mankind.
After Osiris married Isis and succeeded to the kingship he did
many things of service to the social life of man. He also made
golden chapels for the rest of the gods mentioned above, allotting
honours to each of them and appointing priests to have charge over
these thus in eager rivalry brought the country under cultivation,
and they made images to the gods and magnificent golden chapels
for their worship.
Osiris, they say, was also interested in agriculture the
discovery of the vine, they say, was made by him near Nysa, and
that, having further devised the proper treatment of its fruit, he was
the first to drink wine and taught mankind at large the culture of
the vine and the use of wine, as well as the way to harvest the grape
and to store wine.
Of Osiris they say that, being of a beneficent turn of mind, and
eager for glory, he gathered together a great army, with the
intention of visiting all the inhabited earth and teaching the race of
men how to cultivate the vine and sow wheat and barley; Osiris
in this way visited all the inhabited world and advanced community
life by the introduction of the fruits which are most easily
cultivated. And if any country did not admit of the growing of vine
he introduced the drink prepared from barley, which is little
inferior to wine in aroma and strength. On his return to Egypt he
brought with him the very greatest presents from every quarter and
by reason of the magnitude of his benefactions received the gift of
immortality with the approval of all men and honour equal to that
offered to the gods of heaven.
Diodorus of Sicily, Library of History 1.13.5-20.5 309
One of the first acts related to Osiris in his reign was to deliver
the Egyptians from their destitute and brutish manner of living.
This he did by showing them the fruits of cultivation, by giving

Noreen Doyle, Egyptian Mythology, in National Geographic: Essential
Visual History of World Mythology, ed. J. von Laffert et al. (Washington:
National Geographic Society, 2008), 76.
Diodorus, in Oldfather (1933-67), 48-65. (Emph. added.)
them laws, and by teaching them to honour the gods. Later he
travelled over the whole earth civilizing it without the slightest need
of arms, but most of the peoples he won over to his way by the
charm of his persuasive discourse combined with song and all
manner of music.
Plutarch, Moralia 356A-B 310
In that respect, Osiris might be called a prince of peace, for he
converted people to his way not by the sword, but by his words, by his
preaching or persuasive discourse. It is also interesting that much of
his teaching revolved around agriculture of grain and the grape vine.
Getting back on track, since Osiris inherited the throne of Geb, which
Geb had inherited from Re-Atum, by extension Osiris inherited the
throne of Amen-Re himself. Thus Osiris received the authority of Amen-
Re, which is the highest authority, making Osiris Lord of all. Osiris
became King of Kings and Lord of Lords. He was seated next to Amen-
Re, ruling at His side as coregent. Him hath God exalted with His right
hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, Who is gone into heaven, and is on
the right hand of God; angels and authorities and powers being made
subject unto him. As the Amen Hymn hath declared, he is Osiris Sokar,
our Lord.
Worship of Osiris Wennefer,
the Great God who dwells in the Thinite Nome,
King of Eternity, who passes millions of years in his lifetime;
All that exists is ushered in to him in his name of
the Two Lands are marshaled for him as leader in this
his great name of Seker;
his might is far-reaching,
one greatly feared in this his name of Osiris;
he passes over the length of eternity in his name Wennefer.
Hail to you, King of Kings, Lord of Lords, Ruler of Rulers .
Papyrus of Ani, Introductory Hymn to Osiris 311

Plutarch, in Babbitt (1936-62), 35. (Emph. added.)
Nicolas Wyatt, Space and Time in the Religious Life of the Near East, trans.
R.O. Faulkner (Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 2001), 248. (Emph. added.)
Osiris presiding over the west O my Lord, living through
eternity, thou who shalt exist forever; Lord of Lords, king of kings.
Book of the Dead, Spell 185E b S 1 312
There is yet another oriental civilization where the title was in
common use - ancient Egypt. ... The earliest example known to me
is from the nineteenth dynasty, when Osiris is described on a
Theban tomb as King of Kings, Chief of Chiefs.
Dr. John G. Griffiths, in Classical Philology 313
Isis moaning greatly and Nephthys weeping because of this
god, Lord of the gods.
Coffin Texts, Spell 49 I, 215 314
O you gods, come with these kindred of mine, be vigilant as
regards this god who is unconscious this god, the Lord of the
Coffin Texts, Spell 52 I, 238-39 315
I cry out in [the Sacred Booth] because of this god, the Lord
of the gods. See, you are more soul-like, effective and powerful
than all the gods.
Coffin Texts, Spell 54 I, 243-44 316
He puts his hands on the Lord of the gods, who is joyous of
appearing on the thrones of Geb and to whom is given praise in
Djedu. Horus, pre-eminent in Khem, rejoices at Osiris Onnophris
who has come safely to the West with all the gods in his train. See,
you are at the bow of the Bark, and a throne in the shrine is given
to you; see, you are king of the sky. Those who are on their thrones
shall come to you, for it is you who rule them.
Coffin Texts, Spell 50 I, 224-25 317

T.G. Allen (1974), 206. (Emph. added.)
John G. Griffiths, Remarks on the History of a Title, in Classical Philology
48.3 (Jul., 1953), 150-51. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1973), 45. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 51. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 53. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 47. (Emph. added.)
O Osiris this King they tell Re that you have come, O King,
as the son of Geb upon the throne of Amun.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 579 1539-41 318
I sit upon the throne of Re.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 695 2157 319
I am heir(?) of Re-Atum. I act on behalf of his desire.
Coffin Texts, Spell 212 III, 169-70 320
I am Osiris, son of Geb, the successor to Re.
Coffint Texts, Spell 313 IV, 92 321
He exalts my shape above the gods, he has set me at the head
of his Enneads in my dignity of successor to Re.
Coffin Texts, Spell 317 IV, 120 322

You have appeared as Lord of the West at the head of all the
gods, oblations are given to you as to Re. Spacious is your seat
within the Disk, you weigh in the balance like Thoth, your
character is recognized by Him who is in his Disk as that of a god
who is in his presence.
Coffin Texts, Spell 47 I, 205-09 323
I eat of what Re bites, I sit on the thrones of the sunshine.
Coffin Texts, Spell 177 III, 63 324
Re has commanded that you shall be there as ruler of his
thrones, for he is the chiefest of his nobles.
Coffin Texts, Spell 763 VI, 393 325

Faulkner (1969), 234. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 303.
Faulkner (1973), 170.
Ibid. 235.
Ibid. 242.
Ibid. 42-43. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 151. (Emph. added.)
Raymond O. Faulkner, The Ancient Egyptian Coffin Texts, Vol. II (Warminster:
Aris & Phillips, Ltd, 1977), 294. (Emph. added.)
The face of the god is open to me, and I sit on the great throne
beside the god.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 271 391 326
I sit on your great throne, you gods, and I am side by side with
Atum between the Two Wands.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 524 1241 327
O my father Osiris the King, upon the throne of Re-Atum, that
you may lead the sun-folk. Take possession of the heritage of
your father Geb. They guide you to these fair and pure seats of
theirs which they made for Re when they set him on their thrones.
They will install you upon their thrones at the head of all the
Ennead(s) as Re and as his representative.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 606 1686-95 328

God was Manifest in the Flesh

So the scriptures refer to Osiris explicitly as the representative of
Re, and he rules in Res stead with all the authority of the Most High. It
may thus be said that Osiris is a vicarius Filii Dei, a vicar of the Son of
God. In this role, Osiris has a very special and most important function,
which is to be an avatar for Lord Amen-Re when He traverses the
netherworld. After each sunset when Re descends beyond the horizon, at
a certain point He literally merges with Osiris to become one single
being. The reason for why this takes place will be expounded upon in a
later chapter, but for now the point is that during this time Osiris is the
embodiment of Amen-Re. Osiris becomes an incarnation of God Himself
in the flesh. As just previously quoted from the Pyramid Texts, Osiris
rules over the Enneads as Re. In fact, the same utterance also tells
Osiris sit on the throne of Re that you may give orders to the gods,
because you are Re.

Faulkner (1969), 79. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 197. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 250-51. (Emph. added.)
Fig. 28: The union of Re and Osiris into a single form; from the Litany of Re in the tomb
of Nefertari, 13th century BCE.

Fig. 29: Another fusion of Osiris and Re, in the fifth hour of the Amduat, as seen in the
tomb of Thutmose III, 15th century BCE.

It is Re alone who sets as Osiris and Osiris who sets as Re.
Book of the Dead, Spell 15B3 var. i S 329
I cause Re to set as Osiris, Osiris having set as Re.
Book of the Dead, Spell 182 a S 2 330
O Osiris, art thou in the Sky? Come in thy Glory as Re,
equipped (as) the God.
Book of the Dead, Spell 142 T var. 331
Come, [Osiris], lord of the throne (of) the Sky. Nut bears
thee as Re. Osiris who came forth at the beginning.
Book of the Dead, Spell Pleyte 168 S 1, 33-4 332
My head is (that of) Re; the total of me is Atum. I have
recalled the words of Atum my Father in my utterance.
Book of the Dead, Spell 82 d S 333
You are Re.
He shall not perish for many millions of eternities,
while sailing the heavens,
and going through the Netherworld daily,
(from) the desire to unite with Osiris as Ruler of Igaret,
You are Amun,
you are Atum,
you are Osiris.
The Hibis Hymn to the Bas of Amun 334
I have become the essence of Re.
Coffin Texts, Spell 317 IV, 127 335

T.G. Allen (1974), 25.
Ibid. 196.
Ibid. 120. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 218-19. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 71.
Klotz (2006), 191-93. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1973), 242.
O Osiris, foremost in the West, you endure in the sun disk in
the sky every day. O Osiris, foremost in the West, you will enter
the sound eye daily.
Papyrus BM 10507, I, 11-12 336
O Osiris, foremost in the West, raise yourself up (twice). Do
not be weary, for your son Horus overthrows your enemies so that
you might rise up to the sky and unite with Re.
Papyrus BM 10208, II, 9-10 337

Namely, the sun whom they called respectively Osiris

Osiris has been given the name ... Ammon by others.
Diodorus of Sicily, Library of History 1, 11.1, 25.2 338
Father Phoebus339 bestow your love and favour upon Junos
fields, whether tis best to call you rosy Titan in the fashion of the
Achaemenian race, or Osiris the grain-bringer.
Statius, Thebaid 1.696, 715-19 340

There are some who without reservation assert that Osiris is

the Sun.
Plutarch, Moralia 372D 341
It is no secret that Osiris is none other than the sun.
Macrobius, Saturnalia 342

Smith (2002), 121.
Diodorus, in OldFather (1933-67), 37, 79.
Phoebus was an epithet for the sun god, meaning the shining one. See
Fernando N. Antolin, Lygdamus, Corpus Tibullianum III.I-6: Lygdami Elegiarium
Liber (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1996), 291-92.
Statius, Thebaid, in Statius: Thebaid, Books 1-7, trans. D.R.S. Bailey
(Cambridge, Mass: Harvard University Press, 2003), 91-93. Bailey comments in
n.76 that Osiris too appears here as a sun god by conflation with Re-Horus.
(Emph. added.)
Plutarch, in Babbitt (1936-62), 129.
Macrobius, The Saturnalia, trans. P.V. Davies (New York: Columbia
University Press, 1969), 142.
In the middle of the night the Sun merged with Osiriss body;
through this union, the Sun received the power of new life while
Osiris was reborn in the Sun.
Dr. James P. Allen, The Ancient Egyptian Pyramid Texts 343
In a longer prayer, Osiris is invoked as the sun; his essence has
merged fully with that of the sun god Re, for his disk is your disk,
his image is your image, his majesty (shefyt) is your majesty. This
solution builds on intimations in the Litany of Re, and it would
result in a total amalgamation of the two gods on the coffins of
Dynasty 21.
Dr. Erik Hornung, Akhenaten and the Religion of Light 344
Thus the union of Osiris (Sokar was seen as another aspect of
him) and Re, already anticipated, is performed in the oval
netherworld. According to the text, in the well-protected cave of
Sokar we find the feet of Sokar (= Osiris, No. 393) illuminated by
the light of the eyes of the great god (= Re, No. 394), the three-
headed multicoloured serpent, as the text says. This first union of
Sokar-Osiris with Re brings back the very first indication of light
and new life.
Dr. Erik Hornung & Dr. Theodor Abt, Knowledge for the
Afterlife: The Egyptian Amduat A Quest for Immortality 345
Assailed by dangerous negative forces, Ras task is to unite
himself with Osiris, allowing him to be regenerated and reborn
come the dawn.
Dr. Steven Snape, Ancient Egyptian Tombs: The Culture of
Life and Death 346
Some compositions depict how, in the middle of the night, the
sun god descends into the deepest regions of the underworld and is

J.P. Allen (2005), 8.
Hornung (1995-99), 98.
Theodor Abt and Erik Hornung, Knowledge for the Afterlife: The Egyptian
Amduat A Quest for Immortality (Zurich: Living Human Heritage Publications,
2003), 71.
Steven Snape, Ancient Egyptian Tombs: The Culture of Life and Death
(Chichester: Blackwell Publishing, 2011), 182.
fused with its ruler Osiris. The resulting image is captioned both
Ra who sets in Osiris and Osiris who rests in Ra.

Dr. John Baines & Dr. Geraldine Pinch, in World Mythology 347

The Book of Caverns depicts Osiris as the giant eastern

mummy with the solar falcons head, the unified Re and Osiris
about to be reborn.
The large, central figure on the first side of the shrine, Osiris in
appearance and labeled as Re, is a depiction of the unified Re-
Osiris, and image of the gods Re and Osiris at the moment of their
combining at the eastern horizon.
He is an omnipresent, universal deity, an important aspect of
Re-Osiris filling the eastern horizon.
With Hry.t the sky of day and Htmy.t the lower world in its
entirety, the annotation to the figure of the giant deity on the
enigmatic wall in the tomb of Ramesses IX is a description of the
unified Re-Osiris as the highest deity of the cosmos.
Like the ancient solar mystery of Osiris and Re becoming one
the Incarnation and the Resurrection were appropriate to the
luminal nature of cryptography.

Dr. John C. Darnell, The Enigmatic Netherworld Books of the

Solar-Osirian Unity 348

In the New Kingdom (1550-1069 BC) the cult of Osiris

developed in unprecedented ways. This ushered in a religious
innovation: monotheism. For the first time in history the idea was
expressed that there was only one god. Monotheism changed
religion forever. In the aftermath of the monotheistic revolution,
the myth of Osiris merged with the religion of Ra, and Osiris
became an enlightened savior-god. Once again, history shaped the
fate of the myth.

John Baines and Geraldine Pinch, Solar Myths: The eternal cycle of
renewal, in World Mythology, ed. R.G. Willis (New York: Henry Hok and
Company, LLC, 1993), 47.
John C. Darnell, The Enigmatic Netherworld Books of the Solar-Osirian Unity:
Cryptographic Compositions in the Tombs of tutankhamun, Ramesses VI and
Ramesses IX (Fribourg: Academic Press Fribourg, 2004), 73, 81, 374, 378, 481.
In the sixth hour Ra encountered Osiris in the judgment hall.
He permeated the body of Osiris and the two gods became the
United One, a single deity that transcended all divisions.
Dr. Bojana Mojsov, Osiris: Death and Afterlife of a God 349
The main theme of the Litany of Re is the meeting of
opposites, Re and Osiris, who become united and form an entity.
Dr. Alexandre Piankoff, The Litany of Re 350
Horemhebs hymn differs widely from all other hymns to
Osiris known from the period before the Nineteenth Dynasty in
that it describes Osiris as the nocturnal manifestation of Re, and
gives a cosmic interpretation of the myth of Osiris. The theme itself
is not new: it is already present in the Coffin Texts and the Book of
the Dead. Thus Osiris becomes Re, and illumines the darkness
of the Duat as nocturnal sun god.
Dr. Jacobus van Dijk, in The Memphite Tomb of Horemheb,
Commander-in-chief of Tutankhamn, Vol. I 351
It is amusing to discover that there exist many heathen who believe
that they know better than these scholars and their sources.352 Anyway, it
was established previously (ch. 1) that the Triune God included Amen,
Re, and Ptah as well. That being the case, the union of Osiris with Lord
Amen-Re naturally led to the Lord as Ptah also being identified with
Osiris and as his Father (Songs of Isis and Nephthys 16:24). Therefore
such sources attesting to this identification further affirm Osiris role as a
primary avatar for the One True God.
My head is (that of) Re; the total of me is Atum. I have
ascended, my tongue is that of Ptah.
Book of the Dead, Spell 82 d S 353
Osiris Ptah the Lord of Life.

Bojana Mojsov, Osiris: Death and Afterlife of a God (Malden: Blackwell
Publishing, 2005), 54, 86.
Piankoff (1964), 10.
Jacobus van Dijk, An early hymn to Osiris as nocturnal manifestation of Re,
in The Memphite Tomb of Horemheb, Commander-in-chief of Tutankhamn,
Vol. I, ed. G.T. Martin (London: Egypt Exploration Society, 1989), 62.
T.G. Allen (1974), 71. (Emph. added.)
Book of the Dead, Spell 142 S 1 354
Ptah-Osiris, ruler of eternity, king of Busiris, lord of Abydos.
Tomb of Ptahmes, Pl. XXIX b 4 355
Further, accomplishing the rites. Litany of offerings to Ptah-
Sokar-Osiris in all his names..Ptah, beautiful of face, who is on
his great throne, Ptah-Sokar-Osiris..Ptah-Osiris.
Papyrus Louvre N. 3176, III 19 sqq. 356
Ptah-Osiris has become one god and Osiris has been
especially identified with the Memphite mortuary god Sokar. The
same is the case in BD 15, Budge 37.11, Osiris, Ptah-Sokar, Atum
in Heliopolis, lord of the Memphitic necropolis (ityt), he joins 1t-
kA-PtH (= Memphis). As time went on Ptah became a mortuary
god. That brings him near to Osiris. Ptah has been also
identified with the local mortuary god Sokar and has developed
into the combination Ptah-Sokar-Osiris. Louvre N 3176 (P.
Barguet, Le Papyrus N. 3176 (S) du musee du Louvre, Le Caire
1962) dates from the end of the 4th century B.C. It contains among
other things The coming in procession of Ptah-Sokar-Osiris. The
text is directed sometimes to Osiris, sometimes to Ptah, but it is
clear that the three gods have undergone a complete fusion.
Dr. Jan Zandee, in Ex Oriente Lux, XV 357
By the Middle Kingdom, prayers are addressed to the tripartite
deity Ptah-Sokar-Osiris.
Dr. George Hart, The Routledge Dictionary of Egyptian Gods
and Goddesses 358
During the Old Kingdom (c.2686-c.2181 BC) Ptah was
merged with the Memphite hawk-headed funerary deity Sokar,

Ibid. 118.
Jan Zandee, An ancient Egyptian crossword puzzle: An inscription of
Nebwenenef from Thebes, Mededelingen en verhandelingen van het
Vooraziatisch-Egyptisch Genootschap Ex Oriente Lux, XV (Leiden: E.J. Brill,
1966), 47.
Ibid. 47-48.
Ibid. 47.
Hart (1986-2005), 149.
creating the god Ptah-Sokar. This composite deity went on to
become Ptah-Sokar-Osiris in the Late Period.
Dr. Lorna Oakes and Lucia Gahlin, Ancient Egypt 359
Ptah and Sokar could be paired as creator deity and god of the
dead as Ra and Osiris often were. As early as the Old Kingdom,
Sokar was said to be the name of Osiris after he was murdered by
his brother Seth. Statuettes of Ptah-Sokar-Osiris placed in tombs
sometimes contain copies of the Book of the Dead.
Dr. Geraldine Pinch, Egyptian Mythology: A Guide to the
Gods, Goddesses, and Traditions of Ancient Egypt 360

Fig. 30: Painting of Osiris Sokar merged with Ptah and receiving libation from Ramesses
III, based on a scene from his tomb, KV11, 12th century BCE.

Oakes (2002-05), 292.
Pinch (2002-04), 203. (Emph. added.)
Fig. 31: Gilded statue of Ptah-Sokar-Osiris.

The One True God became embodied in Osiris. Therefore let this
mind be in you, which was also in Sokar Osiris: Who, being in the form
of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: and took upon
him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And
being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became
obedient unto death. Without controversy great is the mystery of
godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of
angels, preached unto the masses, believed on in the world, received up
into glory.

Is not this the Carpenters Son?
It was covered in the previous chapter that the triune Lord God is the
creator of all that exists. Therefore He is the master builder, the celestial
architect and carpenter who designed and constructed the entire universe.
Great, Secret Hymn to Amen-Re,
Most primeval of the gods,
Eldest of the primeval ones,
Builder of builders.
The Hibis Creator Hymn 361
May the divine words purify you,
may your mouth be opened by the chisel of Ptah.
May the pieces of carpentry be granted to you by Ptah.
Theban Tomb 23 362
Even in his earliest attestations, Ptah is associated with the
mineral elements of the created worldmetal ores and stoneand
with the art of fashioning these elements into artifacts. He is shown
with the same close-fitting skullcap that craftsmen wear in Old
Kingdom tomb reliefs, and his high priest has the title wr x rp H
mwt the chief one who manages craftsmanship. Ptah was
especially revered as the patron of metal-workers, sculptors, and
Dr. James P. Allen, Middle Egyptian: An Introduction to the
Language and Culture of Hieroglyphs 363
The god Ptah is well attested in the role of creator. His creative
activity is said to take various forms in Egyptian sources. Some
texts, notably the so-called Memphite Theology, characterize it as
an intellectual process, what exists coming into being as the result
of a thought conceived by the deitys heart and expressed by his
tongue. Others describe the god as a master craftsman, forming or
fashioning all things.
Dr. Mark J. Smith, On the Primeval Ocean 364

Klotz (2006), 136, 142. (Emph. added.)
Jan Assmann, Death and Salvation in Ancient Egypt (Ithaca: Cornell
University Press, 2001-05), 323. (Emph. added.)
J.P. Allen (2000-10), 176. (Emph. added.)
Typically, the Memphite Theology also mentions other
models of creation, such as the concept of the creator as Divine
Craftsman or as the biological source of all life.
The Divine Craftsman. Two deities, Ptah and Khnum, were
sometimes credited with physically fashioning the world and its
inhabitants. Ptah was the patron god of craftsmen and artists. He
was particularly associated with sculpture and metalworking. Ptah
was said to have invented the Opening of the Mouth ritual in which
an adze and other tools were used to bring to life statues and
mummies. Hymns to Ptah speak of him designing and crafting the
world and smelting the Two Lands (Egypt).
Dr. Geraldine Pinch, Egyptian Mythology: A Guide to the Gods,
Goddesses, and Traditions of Ancient Egypt 365
As also covered in the previous chapter, because of His role as
Creator of all that is, ultimately He is Father to us all and we are all His
offspring, both gods and men. Behold, what manner of love the Father
hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God.
Historically, many cultures apparently have had no problem referring
to extended family by terms that in our culture today are thought of as
exclusive to immediate family.366 There are numerous examples of
ancient authors referring to distant ancestors as their fathers, and
referring to themselves as the sons of their ancestors, e.g., Art thou
greater than our father So-and-so, which is dead, or whatever else. Even
today there are certain cultures that still practice this, and even have
childrens songs to the effect of- Father So-and-so had many sons, many
sons had Father So-and-so, I am one of them and so are you! Likewise,
sometimes the sacred texts of such cultures refer to cousins, nieces,
nephews, aunts, and uncles as brothers and sisters, e.g., he brought back
all the goods, and also brought again his brother So-and-so. Some
societies had no choice since they did not yet have distinct words for
such specific family relations like nephew.367

Smith (2002), 36. (Emph. added.)
Pinch (2002-04), 62.
Jack D. Eller, Cultural Anthropology: Global Forces, Local Lives (New York:
Routledge, 2009), 195-98.
The ancient Egyptians were no exception to this practice. For
example, in the Pyramid Texts, the god Seth is referred to as a brother of
Horus,368 even though he is the uncle of Horus.369 Nephthys is referred to
as one of Horus mothers alongside Isis, even though she is actually his
aunt (although, to be fair, she is also his nurse, which is certainly a
motherly duty).370 Also, Osiris is referred to as the son of Shu and
Tefnut,371 even though they are the grandparents of Osiris generation.372
That having been clarified, one should not become confused when
reading references to a character as both an uncle and a brother to
another character, or references to a single character having multiple
other characters named as his or her father, etc. Such terms were simply
used as generic terms to indicate either preceeding, contemporary, or
succeeding generations of extended family.373 Hence we may all be
called sons of God.
For Osiris, however, the situation was different. Not in that he wasnt
also a descendent of God, in fact, its just the opposite. Osiris is special
in that he is one of the few who is an immediate offspring of God
Almighty. Thus to call Osiris a son of God is not to merely indicate a
generic kinship to God in the same sense as we are ultimately descended
from the Creator, but rather it means that Osiris was indeed begotten
directly from God Himself. Thats right. Osiris true father was Re
Himself. Also, the deceased who emulated Osiris sought to inherit this
attribute of Osiris and be treated as the son of Re.
Hail, Re! Osiris King N is thyself, and reciprocally.
Hail, Re! Thy Soul is the Soul of Osiris King N, thy going is
his going in the Netherworld. Hail, Re! His resting place is the
Netherworld; what he traverses is the Beautiful West. Such as thou
art, such is Osiris King N; thy glory, O Re, is the glory of Osiris
King N. Osiris King N adores those of the West, he exalts their
souls. Thy course is indeed the course of Osiris King N, thy

Faulkner (1969), 256.
Ibid. 193.
Joris F. Borghouts, The Magical Texts of Papyrus Leiden I 348 (Leiden: E.J.
Brill, 1971), 37-39.
Faulkner (1969), 46.
See pp.111-16.
Eller, loc. cit.
passing is indeed the passing of Osiris King N. the Great God, he
at the head of the Netherworld. O, One of the Disk, great of rays!

Thou indeed, O Re, givest birth to King N , thou Greatest King
N like thyself, O One of the Horizon. The births of King N are the
births of Re in the West, and reciprocally. The births of King N on
high are the births of the Soul of Re on high, and reciprocally. The
lives of King N are the lives of the Soul of Re, and reciprocally.
The breathing of his bodies is the breathing of the bodies of Re,
and reciprocally. Re conceived, Atum gives birth to King N, the
suckling, the Becoming One of Nut. She tends King N, she rears
King N as the Soul of Re who is in her.
Litany of Re, Ch.I 77; IV 1.1 374
It was Re who created me as his son, he modeled me in
stonework(?). He exalts my shape above the gods, he has set me at
the head of his Enneads in my dignity of successor to Re.
Coffin Texts, Spell 317 IV, 119-20 375
The shroud of Osiris was ordered by his father Re.
Coffin Texts, Spell 335 (b) Part II, IV, 315 376
O Father, Most Hidden of the Hidden Ones, Father who art
in heaven, watch over this corpse of thy Son Osiris N., that thou
keep him sound in the gods domain.
Book of the Dead, Spell 162 T 4 377
O my Father Osiris, mayest thou do for me what thy Father Re
did for thee.
Book of the Dead, Spell 175 b S 3 378
Come, [Osiris], lord of the throne (of) the Sky. Thou shalt
be son of the United One, sprung from Re whom Re begot in
the Bnbn-House.
Book of the Dead, Spell Pleyte 168 S 1, 43 379

Piankoff (1964), 30, 35. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1973), 241-42.
Ibid. 265.
T.G. Allen (1974), 158.
Ibid. 184.
I am Osiris I am Orion to Osiris Orion Orion the son
of Re and Nut who bore the gods.
Book of the Dead, Spell 69 a S 2, 3; 142 S 1; 172 S 6 380
O Osiris who has brought his attributes unto the nether
world and traverses what is there in, son of Re, who came forth
from Atum.
Book of the Dead, Spell 180 S 6 381
I come to thee, son of Nut, Osiris, ruler of eternity thy
father Ptah-(Ta)tenen Thy father Re makes sound thy body,
while thy Ennead gives thee praise.
Book of the Dead, Spell 183 a S 1, 2, 4 382
Osiris presiding over the west, Unnofer The Two Lands
have been given thee in the presence of thy father Atum.
Book of the Dead, Spell 185E b S 1 383
Unnofer (whom Re begot after wrath,) while thou continue
to abide in the womb of Nut.
Book of the Dead, Spell 182 c S 2 384
Osiris presiding over the west, Osiris N., beside Re beautiful
art thou on the shoulders of the Sky with the ornaments of thy
Father Re.
Book of the Dead, Spell Pleyte 169 a S 1, 2 385
O King, your messengers go, your heralds run to your father,
to Atum.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 215 140 386
It is pleasant for me and for them,

Ibid. 218-19.
Ibid. 63, 118, 180.
Ibid. 191.
Ibid. 200-01.
Ibid. 206.
Ibid. 197.
Ibid. 220.
Faulkner (1969), 42.
Within the arms of my father,
Within the arms of Atum.
Pyramid Texts. Utterance 216 151 387
O Re-Atum, your son comes to you, the King comes to you;
raise him up, enclose him in your embrace, for he is the son of
your body for ever.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 217 160 388

The glory of the King is in the sky,

His power is in the horizon
Like his father Atum who begot him.
He begot the King,
And the King is mightier than he.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 273-4 395 389
O my father Atum in darkness!
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 362 605 390
You shall reach the sky as Orion there is a welcome for you.
O King, by your father, there is a welcome for you by Re.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 412 723, 726-27 391
I am the well-beloved son of Re;
I was begotten for Re;
I was conceived for Re;
I was born for Re.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 539 1316-18 392
The Kings mother was pregnant with him, (even he) who was
in the Lower Sky, the King was fashioned by his father Atum.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 571 1466 393

Ibid. 44.
Ibid. 45.
Ibid. 80.
Ibid. 118.
Ibid. 135.
Ibid. 207.
O my father Re, this is what you have said: O for a son,
glorious, shining, besouled, strong, mighty, far-reaching, far-
striding! Here am I, I am your son; here am I, I am the King.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 691 2120-21 394
Osiris your father Atum; he causes you to be well-provided
among the gods.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 694 2144, 2146-47 395
Zeus who is called Ammon by some Osiris, they say, was
also interested in agriculture and was reared in Nysa, a city of
Arabia Felix near Egypt, being a son of Zeus. The fatherhood of
the child he attributed to Zeus, in this way magnifying Osiris.
Diodorus of Sicily, Library of History 1, 13.2, 15.6, 23.6 396
There is also a tradition that Osiris and Arueris were sprung
from the Sun.
Plutarch, Moralia 356A 397
Now, this might confuse some readers, since it has already been
mentioned that Geb is also referred to as the father of Osiris. However, in
much the same manner as Horus aunt Nephthys is also called his mother
alongside Isis, so too Geb is referred to as the father of Osiris right
alongside Re as well. Clearly their mutual parenthood was no problem
for the ancient Egyptians.
Hail to thee, Osiris, thou first son of Geb, eldest of the 5 gods,
who came forth from Nut; great first-born of his father Re.
Book of the Dead, Spell 185B a S 1 398
Thy father Re makes sound thy body, There has been
given thee the kingship of Geb. He is thy father, Sokar-Osiris,
thou first Son of Geb, great First-born of his Father Re.
Book of the Dead, Spell 183 a S 4; c S 1 399

Ibid. 226.
Ibid. 300-01.
Ibid. 303.
Diodorus, in Oldfather (1933-67), 47, 51, 75
Plutarch, in Babbitt (1936-62), 33.
T.G. Allen (1974), 205.
[ I have come to you, my father,] I [have come] to you, O
Re, I have come to you, my father, I have come to you, O Geb.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 485A 1029-31 400
Obviously, Geb was a father of Osiris by way of marriage to his
mother Nut. Geb might be described as a sort of step-father, or perhaps
an adoptive father. Although, later in the story, Osiris ends up born
from Geb, in a manner of sorts, and thus technically becomes his bodily
son. That, however, will be covered in chapter 5. The point for now is
that references to both Re and Geb as the fathers of Osiris should be no
cause for confusion. One is a father by blood, while the other is a father
by marriage. It is as simple as that. One might be reminded of other
examples in Near Eastern folklore in which a god or demigod is said to
be both a son of God and son of man, because such characters likewise
have one father by blood and another by marriage. Also, sometimes such
characters are made out to have a second father by marriage in order to
place them in a royal lineage and give them a lawful claim to a throne.
For instance, certain characters might have been considered the son of
God while also being (as was supposed) the son of a human carpenter
who descended from an ancient king. Just as Osiris being the son of Geb
made him the lawful successor to Gebs throne, in the lineage of Lord
Amen Himself.
Regardless of the relationship of Osiris to Geb, the fact remains that
Re is his biological father, his true father. He was begotten directly from
Re Himself. Of course, it only makes sense that Re wished to handle the
matter personally and bring about the birth of Osiris by His own hand.
This was of special interest to Lord Amen-Re, since it was the making of
His very own avatar through which He would accomplish His most
dangerous and most vitally important task. Now, as for how this
begetting of Osiris Sokar, His begotten son, our Lord came about, that
will be covered in the next chapter.

Ibid. 201-02.
Faulkner (1969), 172.
Chapter Three
Who was Conceived by a Holy Spirit,
Born of a Virgin Meri

The so-called Osiris is produced without intercourse.

Theophrastus of Eresus, Fr. 380: On Living Creatures,
Book 5 (4th cen. BCE) 401

Like Father, like Son

It is common knowledge that progenitors pass on their traits to their

progeny. A child is often described as a reflection or spitting image
of its parents, both in appearance and in personality or behavior. This
often results in not only physiological parallels, but also in parallel life
experiences between ancestor and descendant as well. Parallel fates or
destinies, if you will. This could be likened, perhaps, to the concept of
ancestral archetypes, like those proposed by the psychologist Carl Jung.
In ancient Egypt, there was a similar sort of belief in an archetypal
essence402 or reflection between members of a family bloodline. This
concept was known as ones ka.403
Ka/kA was used in reference to both the source of ones ancestral
essence as well as ones individual share which he or she inherited from
said source.404 This individual portion was typically depicted as an exact
refkection, or double,405 of its owner (Fig. 32), indicated with its
hieroglyphic symbol- a pair of raised arms.406 Just as a persons arms are
mirror images of each other, so also are the kA and its owner. To a certain

See pp.173-5.
Faulkner (1969), vii.
Assmann (2001-05), 44, 101, 351.
David O. Connor, Abydos, North, ka chapels and cenotaphs, in Encyclopedia
of the Archaeology of Ancient Egypt, ed. K.A. Bard (London: Routledge, 1999),
Ibid. 100.
Faulkner, loc. cit.
Assmann (2001-05), 44.
extent, so also was a son considered to be a mirror image of his father.
Often times a father or other ancestor was likewise referred to as the
offsprings kA, since that ancestor was a source that passed on the kA to
that offspring.407 Thus Osiris is sometimes referred to as the kA of his son
Horus, since he is the source from which Horus inherited his own kA.408
In turn, Re is likewise referred to as providing the kA of His chosen son
Osiris the King.409 Hence both Osiris and Horus proclaim I am the
image of my father, Re.410 This kA was believed to influence the
owners fate or destiny.
The origin of the ka seems to have been as a persons inner
force, yet was also connected to their essential personality or even
their destiny.
Dr. Steven Snape, Ancient Egyptian Tombs: The Culture of
Life and Death 411
The ka became closely connected with the idea of destiny.
Dr. Rogrio Ferreira de Sousa, in Egyptology at the Dawn of the
Twenty-First Century, Volume 3 412
The offerings for the deceased are meant for the ka, that is, for
his or her individual destiny (another meaning of ka) granted by the

Mark Lehner, The Fractal House of Pharaoh: Ancient Egypt as a Complex
Adaptive System, a Trial Formulation, in Dynamics in Human and Primate
Societies: Agent-Based Modeling of Social and Spatial Processes, eds. T.A.
Kohler & G.J. Gumerman (New York: Oxford University Press, Inc., 2000), 319.
Pyramid Texts, Utt. 364 610-11, 356 582, 370 647, 589 1609, 649
Ibid. Utt. 50 37, 214 136-37.
Papyrus Louvre N. 3279, II. xxx-xxxvi, trans. T.M. Dousa, in The Orphic Gold
Tablets and Greek Religion: Further Along the Path, ed. R.G. Edmonds III
(Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2011), 155. (Emph. added.)
Snape (2011), 20. (Emph. added.)
Rogrio Ferreira de Sousa, The Notion of the Heart and the Idea of Man:
The Effect of Anthropological Notions of Medical Practices, in Egyptology at
the Damn of the Twenty-First Century, Volume 3: Language, Conversation,
Museology, ed. Z. Hawass (Cairo: The American University in Cairo Press, 2003),
Dr. Andreas Schweizer, The Sungods Journey through the
Netherworld: Reading the Ancient Egyptian Amduat 413
Osiris is the Ka of Horus because he is his father and the
source of his fortune. In the ritual, however, Horus puts his arms
around Osiris body, thus acting as his fathers Ka. Each is, or
mediates, the Ka of the other. This is why, on paintings in
Tutankhamuns tomb, Osiris and the late king embrace one
another, and, in the pyramids: King Pepi has come to you, his
father ... Osiris! he has brought you this Ka of yours, while
elsewhere: Horus has not kept away from you, for you are his Ka.
R.T. Rundle Clark, Myth and Symbol in Ancient Egypt 414

Andreas Schweizer, The Sungods Journey through the Netherworld: Reading
the Ancient Egyptian Amduat (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1994-2010), 216.
(Emph. added.)
Rundle Clark (1959), 234. (Emph. added.)
Fig. 32: Tutankhamun (center) posthumously going to his kA (right) to retrieve it from
the original source from which it came- his ancestor Osiris (left), whom he embraces;
from the rear wall of his burial chamber, KV62, 14 th cen. BCE.

Fig. 33: Osiris Sokar (right) is a reflection or spitting image of his father, Re (left);
taken from the Papyrus of Ani (right) and the stela of Djed-Djehuty-ef-Ankh (left).

Given that the kA is inherited from ones ancestors and has an

influence on the fate/destiny/fortune of the owner, it is only natural that
fathers and sons who share in the same kA likewise share similar fates or
destinies. Hence when researching the legends of many ancient gods and
heroes, several recurring parallels begin to emerge. The stories of Re and
His son Osiris are no exception. One of the more significant archetypes
shared between these two is that which first came up on pp.48-72 of ch.1
concerning Lord Re. It is the archetype of the virgin birth.

His Glory is like the Firstling of His Bullock

Countless characters in folklore are said to have theriomorphic forms

or hypostatic manifestations. Some are born that way, others obtain it
through supernatural means such as magical shape-shifting abilities, like
that possessed by Egyptian gods and the divinized deceased who emulate
Osiris (see pp.31-36). For Osiris himself, it was both. While he is
typically recognized and depicted in anthropoid form, it turns out that
Osiris often manifests in, and was apparently born in, the form of a bull.
It is his shape-shifting ability that allows him to change into a human
form, and back again.
Going out into the day and assuming human shape. O Bull, I
lift up your bonds; O Bull, I give you your loosened fetters.
Coffin Texts, Spell 105 II, 112 415
Sometimes a theriomorphic manifestation was referred to as ones
ba. The concept of the ba/bA will be elaborated upon in greater detail in
chapter 5. For now, the bA that is of interest here is the bA of Osiris- his
bovine form, known as Apis (whose mascot on earth was the bull in
Ba was also the term used for what might be described as the
physical manifestations of certain gods, so that the Memphite Apis
bull was the ba of Osiris.
Dr. Ian Shaw, Exploring Ancient Egypt 416
The term bA often denotes the theriomorphic incarnation of a
god, e.g. the Apis is the bA of Osiris.
Dr. Alan B. Lloyd, in Hommages a Maarten J. Vermaseren
Vol. II 417
The Ba of Osiris is the Apis-Bull.
Dr. John G. Griffiths, in Lexikon der gyptologie: Band IV
Meggido-Pyramiden 418
The Ptolemies placed the animal cult at the very inmost heart
of Egyptian religions. Every cult now had a triangular base:
cosmic/solar manifestation
(Re form)
e.g., Apis-Osiris
living incarnation transfigured immortalization

Faulkner (1973), 102. (Emph. added.)
Ian Shaw, Exploring Ancient Egypt (New York: Oxford University Press,
2003), 21.
Alan B. Lloyd, Strabo and the Memphite Tauromachy, in Hommages a
Maarten J. Vermaseren, Vol. II, eds. M.B. de Boer and T.A. Edridge (Leiden: E.J.
Brill, 1978), 618.
John G. Griffiths, Osiris, in Lexikon der gyptologie:Band IV Megiddo-
Pyramiden, eds. W. Helck and W. Westendorf (Wiesbaden: Otto Harrassowitz
GmbH & Co. KG, 1982), 629.
(animal form) (mummy as Osiris figure)
e.g., Apis bull e.g., Osiris-Apis
Dr. Jan Assmann, The Mind of Egypt: History and
Meaning in the Time of the Pharaohs 419
In life, the Apis bull was honored as the physical manifestation
of Ptah; in death he was worshipped as a form of Osiris.
Dr. Geraldine Pinch, Egyptian Mythology: A Guide to the
Gods, Goddesses, and Traditions of Ancient Egypt
Originally the Apis bull was a symbol of fertility. It was sacred
to the lunar deity Ptah-Seker-Osiris, god of the necropolis of
Memphis and the local form of Osiris; and for this there is
abundant evidence in the Egyptian sources expressed in the form
of the names Apis-Osiris and Osiris-Apis. From the latter name
comes the form Sarapis.
Dr. Anne Burton, Diodorus Siculus, Book 1: A Commentary 421
The fertility aspect was emphasized by the association of Osiris
at Memphis with the Apis bull, an association that developed in the
Ptolemaic and Roman periods into the cult of Serapis, a
combination of Osiris and Apis.
Dr. David A. Leeming, Creation Myths of the World:
An Encyclopedia 422
The kings power animal, associated with Osiris in the
netherworld ... Osiris-Apis, a composite god promoted by the
Ptolemies. ...
In time, the cults of Apis, Ptah, and Osiris merged and Apis
was seen as the divine incarnation (ka) of Ptah. ... After death the
bulls were mummified and buried with pomp like Osiris and their
bandages inscribed with the title of Osiris-Apis.
Dr. Bojana Mojsov, Osiris: Death and Afterlife of a God 423
The Apis was an avatar of Egyptian Osiris.

Jan Assman, The Mind of Egypt: History and Meaning in the Time of the
Pharaohs, trans. A. Jenkins (New York: Henry Holt and Company, LLC, 1996-
2002), 374-75.
Pinch (2002-2004), 105.
Anne Burton, Diodorus Siculus, Book 1: A Commentary (Leiden: E.J. Brill,
1972), 242, n.2.
Leeming (1994-2009), 405.
Mojsov (2005), xiv, xvii, 24.
Dr. Benjamin Acosta-Hughes and Dr. Susan A. Stephens,
Callimachus in Context: From Plato to the Augustan Poets 424
The Apis was a specially marked bull, who was worshipped as
the incarnate manifestation of Osiris.
Dr. Susan A. Stephens, in Callimaque: Sept exposs suivis de
discussions 425

The Nile River god Osiris was worshipped in the form of a

bull, called Apis.
Dr. William W. Batstone, in Latin Lyric and Elegiac Poetry:
An Anthology of New Translations 426
Tibullus avowed reverence for the Nile coexists alongside his
assessment of Egyptians as barbarian worshippers of Osiris
incarnation, the bull god Apis.
Dr. Eleni Manolaraki, Noscendi Nilum Cupido: Imagining
Egypt from Lucan to Philostratus 427
Apis is associated with Osiris Lunatus, the big Black Bull,
who was identified with the Nile and inundation.
Dr. Ren L. Vos, in Egyptian Religion: The Last Thousand
Years, Part 1 428
Sarapis was promptly identified with the Osiris-Apis which had
been worshipped there by Egyptians for centuries, and by Greeks
in the fourth century.
Dr. John E. Stambaugh, Sarapis Under the Early Ptolemies 429

Benjamin Acosta-Hughes and Susan A. Stephens, Callimachus in Context:
From Plato to the Augustan Poets (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press,
2012), 186.
Susan A. Stephens, Egyptian Callimachus, in Callimaque: Sept exposs
suivis de discussions, eds. F. Montanari and L.A. Lehnus (Geneva: Fondation
Hardt, 2002), 249.
William W. Batstone, Notes and Comments: Tibullus, in Latin Lyric and
Elegiac Poetry: An Anthology of New Translations, eds. D.J. Rayor and W.W.
Batstone (New York: Garland Publishing Co., 1995), 205.
Eleni Manolaraki, Noscendi Nilum Cupido: Imagining Egypt from Lucan to
Philostratus (Berlin: Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co. KG, 2013), 34.
Ren L. Vos, Varius coloribus. Some remarks on the colours of Apis and
other sacred animals, in Egyptian Religion: The Last Thousand Years, Pt. I, eds.
W. Clarysse, A. Schoors, H. Willems (Leuven: Peeters Publishers, 1998), 716.
The Apis bull represents the divine and ever renewing force of
Osiris. And ever since the Ptolemies both forces of Osiris and Apis
were united and combined into the new Hellenistic divinity Sarapis
who with Isis conquered the whole Mediterranean world and later
on the whole Roman Empire.
Bronze statuette (H. 0.19): head of Apis, sun-disc with uraeus
between the horns, triangle on the forehead, on a human body, left
leg forward, standing on a quadrangular base with an Egyptian
inscription: Osiris-Apis. 26th dynasty (633-525 B.C.).
Cairo, Egyptian Museum, inv. no 38589.
G. J.F. Kater-Sibbes and Dr. Maarten J. Vermaseren, Apis, I: The
Monuments of the Hellenistic-Roman Period from Egypt 430
Your folk, who for the bull of Memphis weep,
Worship you in the god Osiris shape.
Tibullus, Poem I.7.27-28 (1st cen. BCE) 431
Memphis itself, the royal residence of the Aegyptians, is also
near Babylon; for the distance to it from the Delta is only three
schoeni. It contains temples, one of which is that of Apis, who is
the same as Osiris; it is here that the bull Apis is kept in a kind of
sanctuary, being regarded, as I have said, as god.
Strabo, Geography XVII, 1.31 (1st cen. BCE-CE) 432
Most of the priests say that Osiris and Apis are conjoined into
one, thus explaining to us and informing us that we must regard
Apis as the bodily image of the soul of Osiris.
Plutarch, Moralia 362D 433
Enacting the opening of the mouth ritual for his father Osiris-
Apis by the pillar of his mother-priest, the pure one in the great
house [...]

Stambaugh (1972), 91.
Gertruda J.F. Kater-Sibbes and Maarten J. Vermaseren, Apis, I: The
Monuments of the Hellenistic-Roman Period from Egypt (Leiden: E.J. Brill,
1975), ix, 9.
Tibullus, Poem I.7., in Latin Lyric and Elegiac Poetry: An Anthology of New
Translations, trans. Rachel Hadas, eds. D.J. Rayor and W.W. Batstone, (New
York: Garland Publishing Co., 1995), 41. (Emph. added.)
Strabo, Geography, in The Geography of Strabo Vol. VII, trans. H.L. Jones
(London: William Heinemann Ltd., and Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University
Press, 1932-82), 87. (Emph. added.)
Plutarch, in Babbitt (1936-62), 71.
Anubis, who is in the mummy bandages, foremost of [the
divine embalming booth.] Performing ministrations for Osiris-Apis,
four times.
Gebel Es-Silsilah Quarry Stela No. 100, Label for the
Memphite High Priest, Label for Anubis 434

Osiris-Apis, Foremost of the West, the (great) god.

Third Serapeum Votive Stela of Padiese, Louvre Stela IM
3736, Label for Apis 435

O Osiris-Apis, Foremost of the West, (great) god, may he

cause that there remain the name of the Gods Father of Ptah.
Serapeum Votive Stela of Gods Father Padja, Louvre Stela
IM 3441, Main Text 436
An Offering that the king gives (to) Osiris-Apis, Foremost of
the West, who gives life (to) the Gods Father and kings
Serapeum Votive Stela of Painmu, Louvre Stela IM 3424,
Main Text 437
The living Apis, Osiris, Foremost of the West. Thus I have
given to you all life and dominion.
First Serapeum Stela, Louvre SIM 3733, Label for Apis 438
[... I have come to you, my father,] I [have come] to you, O
Re, a calf of gold born of the sky, a fatted calf of gold which HzAt
created. ... I may ascend to the sky to my mother Nut.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 485A 1029-31 439
Cross the Milky Way(?), smite the ball in the meadow of Apis!
Oho! Your fields are in fear, you iAd-star, before the Pillar of the
Stars, for they have seen the Pillar of Kenzet, the Bull of the sky, 440
and the Ox-herd is overwhelmed before him.

Ritner (2009), 187.
Ibid. 397.
Ibid. 400.
Ibid. 445.
Ibid. 588.
Faulkner (1969), 172. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 65, n.14, Again the king.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 254 279-80 441
The King is the Bull of the sky.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 273-4 397 442
Behold, you have become the enduring Bull of the wild bulls
against him.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 306 481 443
I who have no equal, the heir of my father Geb ... I have come
for you, for I am the wild bull of the wild grassland, the great-faced
bull which came out of On; I have come for you, a wild bull of the
wild grassland.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 307 483, 486 444
The King is the Bull with radiance in the midst of his eye.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 319 513 445
Turn, turn yourself about, O Great Bull!
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 393 689 446
The King is the Bull of the Ennead.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 409 717 447
I am the Great Wild Bull.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 470 913 448

The King is established at your head as the enduring bull of

the Wild Bulls.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 480 998 449

I am the Great wild Bull who went forth as Foremost of the


Ibid. 63. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 80.
Ibid. 94.
Ibid. 95.
Ibid. 101.
Ibid. 129.
Ibid. 159.
Ibid. 168.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 510 1146 450
O my father Osiris this King, I have smitten for you him who
smote you as an ox; I have killed for you him who killed you as a
wild bull.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 580 1544 451
O Osiris the King ... wake up and hear [what] Horus [has done
for] you. He has smitten him who smote you as [an ox], he has
slain for you him who slew you as a wild bull.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 670 1975-77 452
The King is a bull [...] the King is a bull.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 694 2156 453
O you whom the Bull begot, O you whom the Bull begot, pull
off the bonds of the Bull.
(The Bull is presumably Osiris, whom his son Horus is
summoned to rescue.)454
Coffin Texts, Spell 15 I, 16 455
Your cleanliness is by means of natron and incense, milk of
the mother of Apis.
Coffin Texts, Spell 21 I, 62-63 456
I will cause N to see the birth of the Apis-bull in the byres of
the dappled cattle, I will cause N to see Osiris in Djedu in his
dignity of Bull of the West.
Coffin Texts, Spell 31 I, 98-100 457
O Osiris, Bull of the Great ones, controller of the living.
Coffin Texts, Spell 36 I, 135 458

Ibid. 186.
Ibid. 234.
Ibid. 285.
Ibid. 303.
Faulkner (1973), 9, n.1.
Ibid. 9.
Ibid. 12.
Ibid. 20.
Ibid. 25.
Hail to you, Osiris in Djedu, in your dignity of Bull of the
Coffin Texts, Spell 37 I, 151 459
O Osiris, son of Nut, Bull of the West, Foremost of the Great
Coffin Texts, Spell 42-43 I, 179 460
You shall have life, O Lord of the West, you son of Harakhti,
Bull of his mother Nut.
Coffin Texts, Spell 51 I, 237 461
I am Apis who is in the sky, long of horns, fair of names.
Coffin Texts, Spell 204 III, 140 462
I am the bull of the dappled cows.
Coffin Texts, Spell 211 III, 167 463
I am the Bull of the Ennead who goes forth from the horizon.
Coffin Texts, Spell 212 III, 169 464
I have become the Bull of the Conclaves; because I am at the
head of the Westerners.
Coffin Texts, Spell 214 III, 173 465
I am the curly-haired bull who guides the sky.
Coffin Texts, Spell 218 III, 196 466
Hail to you ... offspring of Osiris in the Pure Place who
mourns the Bull of the West.
Coffin Texts, Spell 229 III, 294 467
Hail to you, Mourner of Osiris, Companion of the Bull of

Ibid. 28.
Ibid. 34.
Ibid. 50.
Ibid. 166. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 169.
Ibid. 170.
Ibid. 171.
Ibid. 182.
Coffin Texts, Spell 237 III, 312 468
I am Osiris, Bull of the West, King of those who are not.
Coffin Texts, Spell 314 IV, 94 469
O Osiris, Bull of the West at the head of the Great Ennead!
Coffin Texts, Spell 556 VI, 156 470
I have come here from the land of the living to my place of
vindication, says Osiris the Bull of the West.
Coffin Texts, Spell 609 VI, 223 471
Here comes my son the Bull of the sky, the Bull of the eye-
painted bulls, Lord of the West!
Coffin Texts, Spell 619 VI, 232 472
I am the bull presiding over the fields; I am he. I am Osiris.
Book of the Dead, Spell 31 b S 473
I am the horned bull who rules the sky.
Book of the Dead, Spell 53 a S 474
I am the (white) bull in the field. It is I, Osiris.
Book of the Dead, Spell 69 a S 4 475
Osiris ... thou abidest as bull of the west.
Book of the Dead, Spell 78 S 15 476
Osiris the black bull dwelling in Athribis.
Book of the Dead, Spell 142 S var. 2 477
Lord of the sacred land, Osiris, bull of the west ... Raise
thyself, bull of the west.

Ibid. 186.
Ibid. 235.
Faulkner (1977), 166.
Ibid. 197.
Ibid. 202.
T.G. Allen (1974), 41.
Ibid. 52.
Ibid. 63.
Ibid. 69.
Ibid. 119.
Book of the Dead, Spell 182 b S 1, c S 2 (18 th-21st Dyn.) 478
Hail to Thee, Sokar-Osiris, thou first Son of Geb ... Hail to
Thee, Bull of the West.
Book of the Dead, Spell 183 c S 1-2 479
[Hail to thee Osiris-Unnofer] presiding over the west ... bull of
the nether world.
Book of the Dead, Spell 185F a S 480
Hail to thee, Osiris, bull of the west.
Book of the Dead, Spell 185H S 481

Fig. 34: Depiction of Fig. 35: stela of Apis from Saqqara, 26th Dynasty,
Osiris in his form of Apis. currently at the Louvre Museum.

Ibid. 197.
Ibid. 202.
Ibid. 207.
Ibid. 208.
Fig. 36: Osiris as Apis.

Fig. 37: Osiris-Apis, based on a replica currently at the Cond Museum in Chantilly;
original from Hadrians Villa, currently at the Vaticans Gregorian Egyptian Museum.

Fig. 38: Antinous portrayed as Osiris-Apis (see p.211-12) emerging from a lotus flower;
from the Serapaeum of the Canope (also located at Hadrians Villa), currently at the
Vaticans Gregorian Egyptian Museum.

Fig. 39: Bust of Apis from Memphis, 3rd - 2nd cen. BCE.

Fig. 40: Statues of Apis; left- currently at the Louvre Museum, right- based on a bronze
statue from the Saqqara Serapeum, Old Kingdom Period.

Fig. 41: Ushabti figurines of Apis, 19 th Dynasty, currently at the Louvre Museum.

The Firstling of a Cow They are Holy

So Osiris is a bull, and in that form is known as Apis (and the

deceased who identify with Osiris by extension identify as Apis as well).
This is yet another point of comparison to The Good Shepherd, for the
scriptures about him state that The calf is The Good Shepherd; the
sinful men offering it are those who brought him to be slain. Anyway,
this bovine form of Osiris only makes sense, given that his mother was
known as the Celestial Cow. Even his fathers Re and Geb were at times
granted bovine epithets as well.
O Geb, Bull of the sky, I am Horus, my fathers heir.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 260 316 482
An address to the sun-god: Hail to you, Bull of bulls, when
you rise!
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 336 547 483
O Re ... the Bull of the sunshine.

Faulkner (1969), 69.
Ibid. 108.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 467 887, 889 484
If the Apis bull was so highly revered, it is not surprising that
his mother, the cow, would enjoy similar veneration. The sacred
cow was identified with ... Nut.
Dr. Arthur C. Aufderheide, The Scientific Study of Mummies 485
I have joined my mother the Great Wild Cow. O my mother,
the Wild Cow which is upon the Mountain of Pasture.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 271 389 486
Your mother is the great wild cow who dwells in Nekheb.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 412 729 487
You are a son of the Great Wild Cow.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 554 1370 488

It is my mother the great Wild Cow ... who has lifted me up to

the sky.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 582 1566 489
Nut the Great puts her hands on him, (even) she the long-
horned, the pendulous of breast. She suckles this King and does
not wean him.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 548 1344-45 490
O King, you have no human father who could beget you, you
have no human mother who could bear you; your mother is the
Great Wild Cow who dwells in Nekheb.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 675 2002-3 491
Bring me this [...] son of the Cow-goddess [...].
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 696 2167-8 492

Ibid. 156.
Arthur C. Aufderheide, The Scientific Study of Mummies (Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press, 2003), 399.
Faulkner (1969), 79.
Ibid. 135.
Ibid. 214.
Ibid. 236.
Ibid. 211. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 289.
[And so] Nut became [a cow].
Book of the Heavenly Cow, 30-34 493
Nut had several important associations. In the earliest texts,
she was seen as having power over the gods. In some instances she
is portrayed as cow goddess of the sky.
Patricia Remler, Egyptian Mythology: A to Z 494
The Egyptians visualized her mainly as human in form but she
can appear as the Sky Cow.
Dr. George Hart, Routledge Dictionary of Egyptian Gods and
Goddesses 495
Nut takes the form of a cow to carry Ra up into the heavens.
Dr. Geraldine Pinch, Egyptian Mythology: A Guide to the
Gods, Goddesses, and Traditions of Ancient Egypt 496

Fig. 42: Nut, sky goddess and mother of Osiris, is seen here in the form of a cow; from
the Book of the Celestial Cow in the tomb of Seti I, KV17, 13 th cen. BCE.

Ibid. 304.
Edward F. Wente Jr., The Book of the Heavenly Cow, in The Literature of
Ancient Egypt: An Anthology of Stories, Instructions, Stelae, Autobiographies,
and Poetry, ed. W.K. Simpson (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2003), 292.
Remler (2000-10), 137.
Hart (1986-2005), 110.
Pinch (2002-04), 174.
Fig. 43: Nut the Great she the long-horned; scene from the Temple of Kom Ombo.

Egypt is like a very Fair Heifer

Traditionally, the term heifer implied that a cow was a young virgin.
Not always, but generally that was the inference made. Anyway, along
with being known as the Celestial Cow, Nut had another very important
epithet that is relevant to this chapter. It is the title of Hwn.t wr.t, that is
to say- The Great Virgin.
We find the expression the great virgin to denote the kings
mother already in the Pyramid Texts.
Dr. Anders Hultgrd, Leschatologie des Testaments des Douze
Patriarches I: Interprtation des textes 497

Anders Hultgrd, Leschatologie des Testaments des Douze Patriarches I:
Interprtation des texts, Acta Universitatis Upsalienses: Historia Religionum 6
(Stockholm: Almqvist & Wiksell Int., 1977), 219. (Emph. added; trans. by Google
The Egyptian words for girl, virgin, are dd.t, rnn.t, and
especially Hwn.t. This last word is already attested to in the
Pyramid Texts, including the expression, the girl in the eye, i.e.,
the pupil. It means girl, virgin, in a general sense, but can also
denote the young marriageable woman in particular. The Pyramid
Texts speak of the great virgin (Hwn.t wr.t) three times (682c,
728a, 2002a, cf. 809c); she is anonymous, appears as the
protectress of the king, and is explicitly called his mother once
Dr. Jan Bergman and Dr. Helmer Ringgren, in Theological
Dictionary of the Old Testament, Vol. 2 498
1wn.t girl, virgin.
Dr. Aharon Dolgopolsky, The Nostratic Macrofamily and
Linguistic Palaeontology 499

(Hwnt wrt). An epithet of Nut.

Dr. James P. Allen, The Ancient Egyptian Pyramid Texts 500
The Great Maiden [Hwn.t wr.t] who dwells in On has placed
for you her hands on you, because there is no mother of yours
among men who could bear you, because there is no father of
yours among men who could beget you. Your mother is the great
wild cow who dwells in Nekheb.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 412 728-29 501
You have no human fathers and you have no human mothers;
your father is the Great Wild Bull, your mother is the Maiden
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 438 809-10 502

Jan Bergman and Helmer Ringgren, bethlh, bethlm, in Theological
Dictionary of the Old Testament, Volume II, eds. G.J. Botterweck, H. Ringgren,
trans. J.T. Willis (Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1972-99),
338-39. (Emph. added.)
Aharon Dolgopolsky, The Nostratic Macrofamily and Linguistic
Palaeontology (Cambridge: The McDonald Institute for Archaeological
Research, 1998), 89.
J.P. Allen (2005), 431.
Faulkner (1969), 135. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 145. (Emph. added.)
Now, at this point some antagonistic readers might be thinking
something to the effect of Aha! You just debunked your own point! The
four previous passages just quoted didnt use virgin! So ha! But alas,
there is no dichotomy or contradiction here. In language, there exists a
concept known as synonyms, i.e. words that can be exchanged with one
another yet still convey the same meaning. Such an example would, of
course, be the English terms virgin and maiden, as the following
dictionaries affirm.
Definition of maiden
1 archaic an unmarried girl or young woman:
two knights fought to win the hand of a fair maiden
a virgin.
Oxford Dictionaries Online (US) 503
maid \md\ n [ME maide, short for maiden] (13c) 1: an unmarried
girl or woman esp. when young : VIRGIN 2 a: MAIDSERVANT
b: a woman or girl employed to do domestic work
maiden adj (14c) 1 a (1): not married a aunt (2): VIRGIN b
of a female animal (1): never yet mated (2): never having borne
young 2: of, relating to, or befitting a maiden 3: FIRST,
EARLIEST a ships voyage the flight of a spacecraft
maid-en-head \m-dn-hed\ n [ME maidenhead, fr. maiden + -hed
hood; akin to ME hod hood] (13c) 1: the quality or state of
being a maiden : VIRGINITY 2: HYMEN
Merriam-Websters Collegiate Dictionary 504
celibate adj *unmarried, single, virgin, maiden
maiden adj 1 *unmarried, single, celibate, virgin
Ana *youthful, virginal, juvenile
2 *youthful, juvenile, virgin, virginal, puerile, boyish
Maiden holds much the same implications as virgin
virgin adj 1 *unmarried, single, celibate, maiden

Oxford Dictionaries Online (US), (accessed June 10,
2013). (Emph. added.)
Merriam-Websters Collegiate Dictionary: Eleventh Edition, ed. F.C. Mish et
al. (Springfield: Merriam-Webster, Inc., 2004), 748-49. (Emph. added.)
2 also virginal maiden, boyish, *youthful, juvenile, puerile
Maiden in its extended sense carries an even stronger suggestion
than virgin or virginal of youthful lack of experience.
Merriam-Websters Dictionary of Synonyms 505
maiden adjective
2 never having had sexual relations only maiden girls were
allowed to serve as priestesses in that temple in ancient Roman
Synonyms maiden, virginal
Dictionary and Thesaurus - Merriam-Webster Online 506
maiden [meIdn] n 1. Archaic or literary a. a young unmarried
girl, esp when a virgin
Collins English Dictionary 507
maid (md) n. 1a. An unmarried girl or woman. b. A virgin.
maiden (mdn) n. 1a. An unmarried girl or woman. b. A virgin.
maidenhead (mdnhd) n. 1. The condition or quality of being
a maiden; virginity.
virgin (vrjn) n. 1. A person who has not experienced sexual
intercourse. 2. A chaste or unmarried woman; a maiden.
The American Heritage Dictionary of the English
Language 508
maid md, n an unmarried woman, esp one who is young (archaic
and poetic); a virgin (archaic);
maiden mdn, n a maid; adj unmarried; virgin; female; relating
to a virgin

Merriam-Websters Dictionary of Synonyms, ed. P.B. Gove et al. (Springfield:
Merriam-Websters, Inc., 1984), 133, 515, 846, 862, 885. (Emph. added.)
Dictionary and Thesaurus - Merriam-Webster Online, http://www.merriam-[adjective] (accessed June 10, 2013).
Collins English Dictionary: Complete and Unabridged, 6th Edition, ed. J.
Butterfield et al. (Glasgow: HarperCollins Publishers, 2003). (Emph. added.)
The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language: Fourth Edition,
ed. M.S. Berube et al. (Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 2000-09), 1054,
1921. (Emph. added.)
The Chamber Dictionary 509
MAIDEN, ma-dn, s. (A.S.) A maid. a. Pertaining to a young
woman or virgin
Comprehensive Dictionary of the World 510
So the term maiden can and has been employed to convey never
having had sexual relations, just as the term virgin can be. Hence the
example given by the dictionaries cited above, a common expression still
used today, in which a virgin ships first time at sea is called the
maiden voyage- analogous to a maidens first time at intercourse. The
same application to sexual virginity extends to related terms as well, such
as maidenhead, as shown earlier, which can refer to an intact hymen.
Even certain characters venerated by our heathen opponents are referred
to as maidens to indicate the belief that they were virgin mothers, e.g.,
ever maiden and maiden before conception, maiden in conception,
maiden after conception.
Given that Hwn.t can be used (as per Bergman and Ringgren) to refer
to virgin in a general sense (i.e. sexual inexperience), and/or to a
young marriageable woman, and/or to potential motherhood,511 how
then can one determine what combinations of these traits are being
invoked when using Hwn.t? Its simple- by context. While there certainly
exist many alternative versions of Osirian mythology, as covered on
pp.9-18, differing versions do not cancel each other out, and not every
version is canon. So while different stories might exist about Osiris
lineage and how he was conceived, the context that is of interest here is
the context of the particular version already referenced- the tradition in
which Nut was called the Great Virgin. Much like how there exist
different versions of heathen myths as well, even versions in which their
venerated ever maiden virgin mothers were depicted not as conceiving
via parthenogenesis, but rather through sex with men, angels, or gods.
Such versions do not deter the faith and creeds of the heathen, and the
same goes for us.

The Chambers Dictionary, ed. E. Higgleton et al. (Edinburgh: Chambers
Harrap Publishers Ltd., 1998-2006), 968. (Emph. added.)
Comprehensive Dictionary of the World: Vol. III, Part 2, ed. T. Wright (New
Delhi: Mittal Publications, 1992), 698. (Emph. added.)
Bergman, loc. cit.
Therefore, when examining the context of the tradition in which the
mother of Osiris is the Great Virgin, which application of Hwn.t is
indicated? It may be ruled out that it refers to potential motherhood,
since Nut has already obtained motherhood. Nor can Hwn.t here be
referring to a young marriageable woman, since Nut is married to Geb
and thus no longer marriageable.
And on that point, there are some heathen who have contended that
since in this context Nut is married, that somehow by default
incontestably renders Osiris ineligible for classification as virgin-born.
Mere marriage in itself does no such thing, and many of the same
heathen who make such an objection unwittingly admit that it does no
such thing. First of all, the Merriam-Websters Dictionary of Synonyms
cited earlier also states:
Virgin tends to stress a pure unsullied state of chastity. It
usually applies to the unmarried but it may also be referred to the
married when the marital relation has not been consummated,
usually on grounds of choice.512
Second of all, most of those heathen believe in similar stories from
the Fertile Crescent which also claim that a virgin was married and yet
was still a virgin when she bore her first child. That aside, even staying
within the context of ancient Egypt, there is the example of Queen
Ahmose. Returning to Bergman and Ringgren, they wrote:
In the Legend of the Birth of Hatshepsut, Queen Ahmose is
characteristically presented to Amon as a virgin (Hwn.t) and the
most beautiful of all women. In this context it is to be observed
that her husband is called a young child, which apparently means
that the young king was not able to consummate the marriage; thus
the queen, although married, is a virgin. Therefore, the sole
fatherhood of Amon cannot be doubted. 513
Marriage in itself did not void the virgin status of Ahmose, nor void
that of certain virgin mothers in heathen myth. Likewise, Nuts status as
the Great Virgin was not annulled by her marriage to Geb. The usage
of marriage as an objection fails.

Gove (1984), 846. (Emph. added.)
Bergman, loc. cit. (Emph. added.)
It is perhaps also proper here to briefly address the other portion of
Nuts epithet in the Perennial Gospel- virgin meri. This is simply an
ancient Egyptian word often translated as beloved.
I have become new (mA), young (rnp), swift (wn), akh, ba [...]
mighty (wsr), favoured (Hsi), beloved (mri), endowed (mTn),
protected (mki), saluted (tri), and have appeared (xai) as a young
Coffin Texts, Spell 941 VII, 153 514
mr-Imn ... beloved of Amon.
Theban Nile Level Records, Osorkon I, Text No. 2 515
Sxm.y aA.(t) mr.(t) PtH
Sakhmet the great, beloved of Ptah.
A Memphite Land Sale Under Siamon, Label for Sakhmet 516
Nut is certainly beloved by many. A virgin meri is she. Returning to
the main point, since it is impossible that the aforementioned usage of
Hwn.t in reference to Nut means potential motherhood or young
marriageable woman, what other meaning is left? The very first one
Bergman and Ringgren mentioned, which was girl, virgin, in a general
Is there evidence to indicate this is the intended meaning of Hwn.t
here? Indeed there is. First, recall the images in Fig. 26 & 42 on pp.113
& 163. They depict the classic scene of Shu, god of the air, holding up
the XAt (khat), or body, of his daughter Nut, goddess of the sky. Much
like Greek tales of Atlas and Hercules, Shu and Nut must forever hold up
the firmament above the sky. In fact, the Greeks often identified Shu
with their own Hercules/Herakles.517 Shu is also often depicted as
supported from beneath by the body of his son Geb, god of the earth. Shu
remains in between, keeping them forever separated, never the twain

Nyford (2009), 518. (Emph. added.)
Ritner (2009), 35.
Ibid. 162.
Herodotus, in Strassler (2009), 136, n.2.43.3a
A. Burton (1972), 79-80.
Keyne Cheshire, Alexander the Great - Greece & Rome: Texts and Contexts
(Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009), 121.
shall meet. This reflects how the atmosphere is always affixed in its
position between the sky above and the earth below, and never can the
sky come down and make direct contact with the earth.518 Nuts
khat/body must maintain its position, unable to even lift her arms, always
aiding Shu in holding up the firmament above. This circumstance
unfortunately forced Nut into a period of celibacy, as stated by the holy
I am the well-beloved son of Re ...
I was conceived for Re ...
Nut: she can neither copulate nor use her arms;
I will ascend and rise up to the sky.
Geb: he cannot overleap his path(?);
I will ascend and rise up to the sky.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 539 1316-17, 1321 519
There is no ambiguity there or room for personal interpretation. The
scriptures explicitly declare that Nut can NOT copulate, therefore her
epithet of Hwn.t wr.t/the Great Virgin means exactly that- virgin. Osiris
was born of a virgin mother. So how then did Nut become pregnant if
she was a celibate virgin? She was impregnated by the power of Re,
through the holy spirit or Ax520 that was in her.
O Re, make the womb of Nut pregnant with the seed of the
spirit which is in her.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 479 990 521
It can now be seen why it is the case, as covered in the previous
chapter, that it is actually Re who is the true biological father of Osiris,
and also why the kings of Egypt who succeeded Osiris and became
identified with Osiris upon their death likewise identified themselves as
sons of Re and Nut. So having established the fact that Osiris is the Apis
bull (whose earthly mascot resided in Memphis), and that Nut was his
mother cow and a virgin, and having established the fact that Re is his

Stephens (2003), 199.
Diodorus, in Oldfather (1933-67), 25.
Faulkner (1969), 208. (Emph. added.)
The nature of the Ax(akh) concept will be addressed in further detail in ch.5.
Faulkner (1969), 167.
father- it is now time to cover the mechanism by which the triune Lord
God impregnated this celestial cow.
This Apis is the calf of a cow which is never afterwards able to
have another. The Egyptian belief is that a flash of light descends
upon the cow from heaven, and this causes her to receive Apis.
Herodotus, Histories 3.28.2 522
Thats five centuries before the Common Era. Also, it is entirely
corroborative with the holy scriptures.
Here am I, O Re; I am your son ... (even I) a star of gold, the
flash of the Bull of the sunshine.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 467 887, 889 523
Apisa black bull, marked by particular spots and different
from other bulls in his tail and in his tongueis the divinity of all
the Aegyptian peoples. He is born only rarely, conceived not from
mating cattle, as they say, but miraculously in a celestial fire. The
day of his birth is particularly festive to the whole people.
Pomponius Mela, Description of the World, 1.9.58 (mid 1st
cen. CE) 524
The Apis, they say, is the animate image of Osiris, and he
comes into being when a fructifying light thrusts forth from the
moon and falls upon a cow in her breeding-season
Plutarch, Moralia, 368C 525
Among the Egyptians Apis is believed to be the god whose
presence is most manifest. He is born of a cow on which a flash of
light from heaven has fallen and caused his engendering.
Aelian, On the Characteristics of Animals, 11.10 526
Apis was believed to be incarnate in a bull, born to a virgin
cow which was supposed to have been impregnated by Ptah

Oakes (2002-05), 102. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1969), 156. (Emph. added.)
Pomponius Mela, Description of the World, trans. F.E. Romer (Ann Arbor:
University of Michigan Press, 1998), 51, 3. (Emph. added.)
Plutarch, in Babbitt (1936-62), 105. (Emph. added.)
Aelian, On the Characteristics of Animals, in Aelian: On Animals, Books 6-11,
trans. A.F. Scholfield (London: William Heinemann Ltd., and Cambridge, Mass.:
Harvard University Press, 1959), 367. (Emph. added.)
through the agency of fire from heaven (perhaps a bolt of
Dr. John H. Taylor, Death and the Afterlife in Ancient Egypt 527
Said to be the calf of a virgin cow, engendered by a flash of
lightning, Apis was distinguished by special markings on his black
Dr. Abdel H. Zayed, Egyptian Antiquities 528
Apis became incarnate in a specially chosen bull after the god
Ptah impregnated a virgin cow with the power of his lightning.
Dr. Donald K. Sharpes, Sacred Bull, Holy Cow: A Cultural Study
of Civilizations Most Important Animal 529
Herod., III, 28 shows acquaintance with the Egyptian tradition
according to which the holy bull of Apis was born of a virgin cow,
which was fructified by a beam of light from heaven (or the moon).
Dr. Hermann Kleinknecht, in Theological Dictionary of the New
Testament 530
It is incontestable. Apis, who is also Osiris, was born of a virgin after
the Lord God impregnated his mother with flaming light from heaven.
The most explicit statement, however, from an ancient source that attests
to this aspect of Osiris was recorded by Theophrastus of Eresus, in the 4th
century BCE. It is preserved in Fragment 380, in an epitome on
Aristotles History of Animals by Aristophanes of Byzantium (3rd-2nd cen.
BCE). It reads as follows:
Woman alone of two-footed creatures brings forth live young;
other two-footed creatures produce eggs. Woman alone of
creatures that bring forth live young (rather than eggs) produces
offspring without being impregnated. Theophrastus bears witness

John H. Taylor, Death and the Afterlife in Ancient Egypt (London: British
Museum Press, 2001), 247.
Abdel H. Zayed, Egyptian Antiquities (Cairo: Le Scribe gyptien S.A.E., 1962),
Donald K. Sharpes, Sacred Bull, Holy Cow: A Cultural Study of Civilizations
Most Important Animal (New York: Peter Lang Publishing, Inc., 2006), 58-59.
Hermann Kleinknecht, , A I-IV, in Theological
Dictionary of the New Testament: Abridged in One Volume, eds. G. Kittel & G.
Friedrich, trans. G.W. Bromiley (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.,
1968-95), 342.
that Aristotle said that the so-called Osiris is produced without
intercourse, in the fifth book of On Living Creatures. 531
There it is, clear as crystal. If the previous material in this chapter
wasnt already enough (which it is) to establish the fact, the quotation
above has summed it all up the most concisely. Osiris was produced
without intercourse. No ambiguity there, no room for misinterpretation.
The Egyptians (and Greeks) knew it, at least four centuries before the
Common Era- Lord Osiris had a virgin birth.
While there is no dispute over the citation of Theophrastus as the
source here, it is worth noting the commentary of one of the editors of
this translation. In a subsequent volume in this series on Theophrastus,
Dr. Robert W. Sharples explained his reasons for suspecting that the
citation of Theophrastus comment on Osiris was not made by
Aristophanes himself, but instead was actually a scribal gloss.532 That is
to say, it was an explanatory footnote added by a copyist which later
became integrated into the main body of the text. Sharples traces its
terminus ante quem back to the time of Pamphilus of Alexandria533 in
the mid 1st century CE.534 So while the alleged insertion of this so-called
scribal gloss still (just barely) predates certain other texts that also
contain rival legends of a virgin birth, even if it didnt, the main point
here is that it still cites Theophrastus as its source. The attribution to
Theophrastus is one thing the editors of this translation did not contest,
and Theophrastus far predates Pamphilus of Alexandria.
Sharples also clarifies that it is likely that Theophrastus intent was
just to note that Aristotle was merely reporting that such a belief existed,
rather than Aristotle endorsing the belief itself. The very preface of so-

Aristiphanes of Byzantium, Epitome, in Theophrastus of Eresus: Sources for
his Life, Writings, Thought & Influence, Part Two, eds. W.W. Fortenbaugh et al.
(Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1992), 185. (Emph. added.)
Robert W. Sharples, Theophrastus of Eresus: Sources for his Life, Writings,
Thought & Influence, Commentary Volume 5, Sources on Biology (Leiden, E.J.
Brill, 1995), 115-17.
Ibid. 119.
Frederick G. Meyer, Appendix 9: Fuchs Literary Sources, in The Great
Herbal of Leonhart Fuchs: De Historia Stirpium Commentarii Insignes, 1542, eds.
and trans. F.G. Meyer, E.E. Trueblood, J.L. Heller (Stanford: Stanford University
Press, 1999), 792.
called before the name of Osiris does seem to indicate a cautionary
skepticism to the claim. This would be more in line with Aristotles more
scientifically oriented worldview.535 Dr. Sharples does, however,
acknowledge that there was absolutely an ancient Egyptian belief in the
parthenogenetic birth of Osiris- A so-called Osiris was indeed said to
be born without intercourse.536

What is also relevant here is that not only was Nut associated with
virgin motherhood and with bovine, but also with bees. This is
particularly interesting in light of the phenomenon traditionally known as
bougonia, meaning ox-born (a description that would certainly seem to
apply to Osiris as well.) Bougonia was believed to be the spontaneous
generation of bees from the bodies of bulls and cows. Therefore, in
ancient times, bees were believed to be produced without intercourse, i.e.
parthenogenetically. Given this belief that cows could literally produce a
type of offspring without mating, it is no wonder that the story of a cow
goddess giving virgin birth can be found in the literature of ancient
Egypt. This is yet another natural metaphor the Lord has used to reveal
part of His gospel.
There are also peculiarities concerning the similarities and
differences in animal species, and in the manner of their births,
such as the fact that in Egypt if you bury an ox in certain places, so
that their horns emerge above the surface, and then later saw them
off, they say that bees will fly forth. For these creatures are the
result of the oxs decomposition. And this is a subject that seems to
have interested Philitas, who was of a particularly enquiring cast of
mind, since he calls them born of an ox when he says:
With long strides first you reach the ox-born bees.
Antigonus of Carystus, Collection of Wonderful
Tales (3rd cen. BCE) 537

Sharples (1995), 116.
Ibid. 117 and n.359.
Antigonus of Carystus, Collection of Wonderful Tales, in Hellenistic
Collection: Philitas, Alexander of Aetolia, Hermesianax, Euphorion, Parthenius,
Bees were born from the carcass of a calf that had fallen dead
in the glades.
Nicander of Colophon, Theriaca 445-50 (2nd cen. BCE) 538
It was from the putrefied body of this animal that there spring
the sweetest bees, those honey-mothers from which the Greeks
therefore call bees the ox-sprung ().
Varro, On Agriculture, 2.5.5 (1st. cen. BCE) 539
Four bulls of excellent body
With as many heifers whose necks have never felt the yoke:
When the ninth day has dawned,
Sends funeral gifts to Orpheus and goes to the thicket again.
Here, to be sure, a miracle sudden and strange to tell of
They behold: from the oxens bellies all over their rotting flesh
Creatures are humming, swarming through the wreckage of their
Huge and trailing clouds of bees, that now in the treetops
Unite and hang like a bunch of grapes from the pliant branches.
Virgil, Georgics, 4.50-58 540
Havent you seen that whenever corpses
Putrefy over time or in liquefying heat
They turn into tiny creatures? Bury the corpses
Of slaughtered bulls (this is well-known)
Down in a ditch, and honeybees will be born
From the rotting entrails. Like their parents
They are busy in the fields and hope for harvest.
Ovid, Metamorphoses, Book 15 541
He orders every sacrifice to be offered without honey or
leaven. Both these substances he considers unfit to be brought to
the altar: honey perhaps because the bee which collects it is an

ed. J.L. Lightfoot (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2009), 53-55. (Emph.
Nicander of Colophon, Theriaca, in Poems and Poetical Fragments, eds.
A.S.F. Gow and A.F. Scholfield (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1953-
2010), 123, 125.
Varro, On Agriculture, in Cato and Varro on Agriculture, trans. W.D. Hooper,
H.B. Ash (London: William Heinemann Ltd., and Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard
University Press, 1934-93), 369.
Virgil, in Lewis (1983), 127.
Ovid, in Lombardo (2010), 428.
unclean animal, bred from the putrescence and corruption of dead
oxen, we are told.
Philo of Alexandria, On Those Who Offer
Sacrifice VI (1st cen. CE) 542
Now Democritus, Mago and likewise Vergil have recorded
that bees can be generated at this same time of year from a slain
bullock. Mago indeed also asserts that the same thing may be done
from the bellies of oxen.
Columella, On Agriculture 9.19.6 (1st cen. CE) 543

Fig. 44: Bougonia.

Philo of Alexandria, On Those Who Offer Sacrifice, in Philo: Volume VII, trans.
F.H. Colson (London: William Heinemann Ltd., and Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard
University Press, 1937-58), 269.
Columella, On Agriculture, in Columella: On Agriculture, Books 5-9, trans.
E.S. Forster, E.H. Heffner (London: William Heinemann Ltd., and Cambridge,
Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1954), 485.
Fig. 45: Bodies of cows producing offpring (bees) parthenogenetically.

Aristotle knew not only that bees can reproduce without

copulation but also that the offspring so produced was unlike the
mother. The difference refers to the sex of the parthenogenetic
Dr. Ursula Mittwoch, in New Scientist 544
Pliny refers to kings (reges), and like Aristotle uses the simplex
bee to denote the worker; indeed his reference to true bees
(verae apes) in the above passage underlines the impression that
they are bees par excellence. As to the manner of reproduction,
Plinylike Aristotlerefers to belief by some in a type of
parthenogenesis, and by others in bisexual reproduction.
D.E. Le Sage, in Bee World 545
On the subject of the generation of bees there is by no means
unanimity of opinion. Some maintain that bees neither copulate
nor bring forth young: they fetch them in, so it is alleged ... Others
maintain that the bees fetch in the brood of drones from one of
the plants mentioned above, while the brood of bees is generated
from the leaders.

Ursula Mittwoch, Virgin Birth, New Scientist 78, no. 1107.35 (1978): 751.
D.E. Le Sage, Bees in Indo-European Languages, Bee World 55, no. 1
(1974): 22.
Aristotle, History of Animals, 5.21 (4th cen. BCE) 546
Bees were believed to be parthenogenetic ... Belief in the bees
parthenogenesis led to its being a symbol of the Virgin.
Dr. Hope. B. Werness, The Continuum Encyclopedia of Animal
Symbolism in World Art 547
So the bee was a symbol of virginal generation from sacred bovine.
Such being the case, Nut was not only portrayed as a parthenogenetic
cow, but was also depicted as a sacred bee. This detail further
strengthens her identity as a virgin mother.
The Egyptians visualised her mainly as human in form but she
can appear as the Sky Cow. In an early text Nut is imagined as a
bee wielding great power over the gods.
Dr. George Hart, The Routledge Dictionary of Egyptian Gods
and Goddesses 548
O Nut, you have appeared as a bee; you have power over the
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 444 824 549
O Nut ... You are the daughter, mighty in her mother, who
appeared as a bee.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 429-31 779-81 550

Adding all of this together, it is only natural that Nuts association

with parthenogenetic bee bougonia extends to her bougens son, Osiris-
Apis. Likewise, these details further strengthen his identity as a virgin-
born god.

Aristotle, History of Animals, in Aristotle: History of Animals, Books 4-6,
trans. A.L. Peck (London: William Heinemann Ltd., and Cambridge, Mass.:
Harvard University Press, 1970-93), 187-89. (Emph. added.)
Hope. B. Werness, The Continuum Encyclopedia of Animal Symbolism in
World Art (New York: The Continuum International Publishing Group Inc.,
2006), 17, 40.
Hart (1986-2005), 110. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1969), 148.
Ibid. 142.
Figures of Bes and Beset (in high relief) were discovered in a
room at the right of the entrance to the Necropolis of Memphis
(H.I.50). At the left of these figures a female figure of much smaller
proportions is standing, above the head of which is a painting. Of
the representation only the tail and the hindlegs of an Apis bull are
preserved. The bull is standing to the left before an altar, probably
in a naos, amid a decoration of bees on a vine.
G. J. F. Kater-Sibbes and Dr. Maarten J. Vermaseren, Apis, I: The
Monuments of the Hellenistic-Roman Period from Egypt 551
In 1653 the tomb of Childric, a Merovingian king who died
in 481, was opened in Tournai. The burial deposit included a
bulls head adorned with a solar disk and more than three hundred
gold bees that had been used to decorate his equipage. ... The
bulls head with the solar disk is Apis. But the bees are a different
matter. In this context they are not obviously markers of kingship,
but symbols of rebirth linked to the Apis bull through an etymology
of Apis/apis. The bees reflect a belief in the spontaneous creation
of bees from the carcass of a dead bull, the so-called bougonia.
Dr. Susan A. Stephens, Seeing Double: Intercultural Poetics
in Ptolemaic Alexandria 552

Fig. 46: Depiction of the golden bees of the Apis bull from the tomb
of King Childric.

Kater-Sibbes (1975), 12. (Emph. added.)
Stephens (2003), 4.
The Egyptians said that the bee arose from Apis, the sacred
bull of Egypt and embodiment of Osiris, god of resurrection. A
buried bull (or one suffocated and shut in a sealed room) was
thought to engender new bees.
Dr. Claire Preston, Bee 553
The Bougonia at the end of book 4, which begins with the
violent death of cattle and the disfigurement of their corpses, and
culminates in the miracles of new life, is strikingly similar to the
death of Osiris, his mangled corpse, and his eventual restoration as
ruler of the dead and giver of the means of sustaining life. And of
course, this method of acquiring a new hive of bees, Vergil tells us,
is Egyptian.
Dr. Patricia A. Johnston, in Mystic Cults in Magna Graecia 554
What for Greeks fell into the category of marvel in Virgil takes
on characteristics of an expiatory rite. He claims that omnis in hac
certam regio (Egypt) iacit arte salutem (4.294). As Virgil describes
it, the bulls death comes to resemble a famous religious ritual that
functioned to insure the fertility of Egypt: the commemoration
doubtless bizarre to the Romansof the death, mummification, and
rebirth of the Apis bull. The death of the bull was an occasion for
national mourning; the new Apis was regarded as a rebirth of the
old, whose wellbeing was linked to that of the land itself. Virgils
first bugonia is rather like mummificationthe animals orifices are
closed up and he is enclosed in a small sarcophagus-like space and
covered with fragrant herbs. A connection between bougens and
the Apis was not unprecedentedit had already been made by
Dr. Susan A. Stephens, in Rituals in Ink: A Conference on
Religion and Literary Production in Ancient Rome 555
In Egypt, the bull god Apis was associated with bees, and the
Latin word for bee, apis, derives from that source. Bees were also
a symbol in Egypt of Osiris, the sun god.

Claire Preston, Bee (London: Reaktion Books LTD, 2006), 86.
Patricia A. Johnston, The Mystery Cults and Vergils Georgics, in Mystic
Cults in Magna Graecia, eds. G. Casadio and P.A. Johnston (Austin: University of
Texas Press, 2009), 264-65.
Susan A. Stephens, Whose Rituals in Ink?, in Rituals in Ink: A Conference on
Religion and Literary Production in Ancient Rome, eds. A. Barchiesi, J. Rpke,
and S.A. Stephens (Wiesbaden: Franz Steiner Verlag, 2004), 159.
Katherine Correa, in Symposium: The Adelphi Honors College
Journal of Ideas 556
Now, in view of all of this multifarious concern on the part of
men of all ages with the affairs of bees, it is utterly
incomprehensible that the same people could profess belief in the
spontaneous generation of bees from the carcass of a defunct ox;
yet such was indeed the case. In Greece these bees were called
bugonia, from bous, ox, and gony, progeny; the Latin terms were
Bugenes melissa or Taurigena apes (taurus, bull). Wheeler traces
this myth back to Egypt, and in this land Apis denoted a bull
instead of a bee; so at the start of our account we meet with this
strange affinity between bees and bulls, which rapidly transcends
the merely philological and becomes intimately biologic.
The Egyptian god, Apis, in the form of a bull, was a
reincarnation of Ptah, and later of Osiris, the sun god, one of those
symbols was the bee. ... A living bull was selected by the priest caste
to serve as Apis during its life; as each Apis died another was
chosen for the role.
Elsewhere in the article, the author continues:
Apis was produced by an immaculate conception that
foreshadowed the human counterpart ... According to one account
the mother cow was fertilized by a ray from heaven, and the calf,
always a black male, was found by means of certain cryptic
markings (and much priestly hokum). ... Because of the cult of
Apis-worship, all bulls came to take on a significance denied to
other animals. The bull was the supreme sacrificial beast, and the
slaying of a bull, at first an act denoting strength and courage,
became more and more formalized and survives as the great sport
and spectacle of Spanish peoples everywhere, the corrida de toros,
or bullfight, with its elaborate pageantry.
So when valuable honeybees were seen issuing from the body
of a slain bull, it was an easy matter for the priests, and through
them the populace, to believe that they had been sent by a divine
providence to furnish honey, a dietary item always rated as a great
luxury. Life from deatha dim foreshadowing of the now
commonly known nitrogen and carbon cycles in naturewas a
concomitant to the familiar ashes-to-ashes philosophy. Like the
periodical flooding and retreat of the Nile, like the fleur-de-lis, the
bugonia came to stand as a symbol of resurrection.

Katherine Correa, Artemis Ephesia and Sacred Bee Imagery in Ancient
Greece, in Symposium: The Adelphi Honors College Journal of Ideas, Vol. 12,
eds. K. Correa et al. (Garden City: Adelphi University, 2012), 75.
Numerous writers in ancient and medieval times have
described the ritualistic performance that grew into standard
practice if a swarm of bees was desired through the sacrifice of an
ox. ... From Egypt, the bugonia legend spread throughout the
ancient world, becoming more elaborate and formalized as time
passed. The Greeks, Carthaginians, and Romans all speak of
producing bees in this manner as a commonplace occurrence.
Dr. Julian D. Corrington, in Bios 557
The bee as a magico-religious figure can be found as far back
as ancient Egypt. Many Egyptian texts and tomb monuments show
the bee as a common hieroglyph for the Pharaoh as king of Lower
Egypt from ca. 3500 B.C. until Roman times. ... Various
Alexandrian writers such as Callimachus, Philetos, Nicander, and
Antigonos of Karystos mention the bougonia, Antigonos in
particular placing it in Egypt. From Herodotus II.41 we hear that
when cattle died in Lower Egypt the females, sacred to lsis, were
thrown back into the river, while the males were buried in the
suburbs with one or both horns appearing above the ground to
mark the place. When the bodies decayed a boat came from
Prosopitis on the Delta to collect the ox bones. In V.114
Herodotus tells how the severed head of Onesilus became
occupied by a swarm of bees who filled it with a honeycomb. In
consequence of this the townspeople felt it necessary to consult an
oracle. From tales of this sort it seems natural to deduce that, when
native Egyptians found insects, particularly bees, beginning to breed
in dead bodies, being unacquainted with principles of animal
generation, they assumed that the bees, symbols of the king of the
Delta, had arisen by some mysterious, magical means. lf the dead
body were that of an ox or bull a possible mental connection with
the sacred Apis bull could only heighten an assumption of
spontaneous, divine generation. So the tale of the miracle must
have passed throughout Egypt to the lands beyond the Delta. Thus
the bougonia was a familiar part of traditional, Mediterranean lore
available to Virgil from a variety of sources.
Dr. Geraldine T. Thomas, in Vergilius 558

Julian D. Corrington, Bees, Bulls and Bugonia, Bios 27, no. 2 (1956): 99-
Geraldine T. Thomas, Religious Backgrounds for Virgils Bee Symbol in the
Georgics, in Vergilius, Vol. 24, ed. J.M. Benario (Wallingford: The Vergilian
Society, 1978), 34.

Another detail that further strengthens the fact that Osiris was
understood to have had a virgin birth from a celibate cow is his
syncretism with other characters of myth & legend born of
parthenogenesis. This would include the ancient Greek character known
as Epaphus. Firstly, at least as early the 5th century BCE, the Apis was
conflated with Epaphus, as can be seen in the testimony of Herodotus
and Aristogoras (as preserved by Aelian).
Apis in Greek is Epaphos. ... After Cambyses had arrived back
at Memphis, an epiphany of Apis, who is called Epaphos by the
Hellenes, occurred among the Egyptians.
Herodotus, Histories 2.153, 3.27.1 559
Among the Egyptians Apis is believed to be the god whose
presence is most manifest. He is born of a cow on which a flash of
light from heaven has fallen and caused his engendering. The
Greeks call him Epaphus and trace his descent from his mother
the Argive Io, daughter of Inachus. ... Herodotus and Aristogoras
adduce evidence and tokens of this.
Aelian, On the Characteristics of Animals, 11.10 560
Like other Egyptian gods, Apis had his Greek equivalent. He
was equated with the Greek hero Epaphos. The Greeks believed
Epaphos was one of the mythical pharaohs of Egypt and the
founder of the pharaonic capital of Memphis.
Dr. Michael Pfrommer, Greek Gold from Hellenistic Egypt 561
Io, supposed to be an ancestress of Kadmos, was turned into a
cow and bore Epaphos, who was identified with the Egyptian Apis-
Dr. Cora A. Sowa, Traditional Themes and the
Homeric Hymns 562

Strassler (2009), 189, 219.
Aelian, in Scholfield (1959), 367. (Emph. added.)
Michael Pfrommer, Greek Gold from Hellenistic Egypt (Los Angeles: Getty
Publications, 2001), 30.
Cora A. Sowa, Traditional Themes and the Homeric Hymns (Wauconda:
Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers, Inc., 1984-2005), 29.
It may not be irrelevant that the Apis calf was identified by the
Greeks with Epaphus, the child of Io who combines human and
bovine forms.
Dr. Robert W. Sharples, Theophrastus of Eresus: Sources for his
Life, Writings, Thought & Influence, Commentary Volume 5,
Sources on Biology 563
Epaphos, son of Io and Zeus, is evidently the Egyptian bull-
god Apis.
Dr. Barry B. Powell, Writing and the Origins of
Greek Literature 564
Secondly, since Apis is a form of Osiris, this by extension identifies
Epaphus with Osiris as well. That alone is satisfactory enough. However,
by the 3rd century BCE, the conflation is made even more explicit when
Epaphus is directly identified with Osiris himself, rather than by
extension via his theriomorphic form as Apis. This was recorded by
Mnaseas of Patrae, as attested to by Plutarch.
I leave out of account Mnaseass annexation of Dionysus,
Osiris, and Serapis to Epaphus ... The fact is that the peculiarities
already mentioned regarding the festival and sacrifices carry a
conviction more manifest than any testimony of authorities.
Plutarch, Moralia 365F 565
Osiris or Egyptian Dionysos, Sarapis, and Egyptian Epaphos
were a single being.
Dr. Sydney H. AuFrre, in Light Against Darkness: Dualism in
Ancient Mediterranean Religion and the Contemporary
World 566

Sharples (1995), 118.
Barry B. Powell, Writing and the Origins of Greek Literature (Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press, 2002-07), 41.
Plutarch, in Babbitt (1936-62), 91. (Emph. added.)
Sydney H. AuFrre, Dualism and Focalization in Alexandrian Religious
Thought in Egypt at the Beginning of the Ptolemaic Period: Manetho of
Sebennytos and the Argive Myth, in Light Against Darkness: Dualism in
Ancient Mediterranean Religion and the Contemporary World, eds. A. Lange
and E.M. Meyers (Gttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht GmbH & Co. HG, 2011),
52 n.66. (Emph. added.)
Some (e.g. Ovid, Apollodorus, Eusebius and other later
writers) regarded him both as son of Io and founder of Memphis,
and as Pharaoh. According to Mnaseas (quoted by Plutarch) he was
... Osiris.
Dr. Reginald E. Witt, Isis in the Ancient World 567
So Osiris was conflated with Epaphus. The significance of this is that
Epaphus mother, Io, was a virgin at the time of his conception & birth.
Not only that, but like Osiris virgin mother, Io was also impregnated
while in the form of a cow.
Enter Io, a young woman transformed into a cow. ... [564-65]
Do you hear my voice, the voice of the cow-horned girl? ... [601]
You lucky, lucky girl, why stay a virgin, when you have the chance
to make the greatest marriage? Zeus is inflamed by the arrow of
desire to join with you in love. Dont reject his bed, child, but go
out to Lernas deep meadow and your fathers herds, so the eye of
Zeus may gain relief from longing. ... [664-69]
Theres a city, Canopus, at the edge of the land,
by the Niles mouth, where the river drops its silt.
There Zeus will bring you to your senses, with
a gentle touch, a hand you need not fear.
Your son, dark Epaphus, born from that touch
and named for it, will harvest all the land
irrigated by the broadly flowing Nile. ... [850-56]
Never, never, long-lived Fates,
may you see me sharing the bed of Zeus.
No marriage with one of the heavenly sort for me.
Im frightened when I see Io,
a virgin who shunned a husband,
destroyed by Heras hard traveling. [901-06]
Aeschylus, Prometheus Bound 568
Here Io is still referred to as a celibate virgin. This being done even
after she was already said to have borne a son around fifty lines earlier in
the play.

Witt (1971-97), 320. (Emph. added.)
Aeschylus, Prometheus Bound, in Aeschylus: Prometheus Bound, trans. D.H.
Roberts (Indianapolis: Hackett Publishing Company, Inc., 2012), 27, 28, 34, 42-
44. (Emph. added.)
The Danaids merge Ios impregnation and her childbirth
because they want to suggest the impossible: that Io had conceived
their ancestor already in Argos but also that she was a virgin
throughout her wanderings. The first contention makes their tie
with the host city stronger; the second bears out their advocacy of
virginity. In contrast to the Suppliants, Prometheus Bound
emphasizes Ios rejection of marriage as the only cause of her
wanderings. Io wanders because she remains a virgin when she is
ripe to become a wife and a mother.
Dr. Silvia Montiglio, Wandering in Ancient Greek Culture 569
Io is not just in the service of Hera, she is the first priestess of
Hera, beginning a succession that led down to historical times - the
same list that provided the backbone of Hellanikos work and was
considered by Thucydides. But the priestess at Argos was not a
young maiden: she was a woman, presumably a virgin, who held
the post for life.
Dr. Ken Dowden, The Uses of Greek Mythology 570
The miraculous, non-sexual conception of Ios divine child came
about by a mere touch of the lightning-bearing hand of Zeus, akin to
Osiris conception through a touch of lightning. As mentioned in some of
the previous quotations, this detail is where Epaphus got his name. It is
from the Greek word epaph, meaning touch. Even his name serves as
a perpetual reminder of the legend of his virgin birth, yet another virgin
birth that far predates the Common Era.
The name Epaphus is treated as a pun on the verb epaphao,
meaning to touch lightly. Ios son is sometimes identified with the
Egyptian god Apis, who took the form of a bull.
Dr. Deborah H. Roberts, Aeschylus: Prometheus Bound 571
Epaphus was named from his being fathered by Zeus with a
Dr. Robert W. Sharples, Theophrastus of Eresus: Sources for his
Life, Writings, Thought & Influence, Commentary Volume 5,
Sources on Biology 572

Silvia Montiglio, Wandering in Ancient Greek Culture (Chicago: University of
Chicago Press, 2005), 23. (Emph. added.)
Ken Dowden, The Uses of Greek Mythology (London: Routledge, 1992-2005),
78. (Emph. added.)
Roberts (2012), 42 n.62.
Io conceived Epaphos through the touch and breath of Zeus.
Dr. Froma L. Zeitlin, in Cabinet of the Muses 573
It must be significant also that the touch () of Zeus by
which Io conceived Epaphus, so far from implying violence, could
be imagined by Aeschylus (Supp. 40-48, 315) as a breath (
Dr. Leonard Woodbury, Transactions and Proceedings of the
American Philological Association 574
The story of the virginal Io, whose son was begotten by
Zeus mere caress, is a sacred myth to the suppliants, a holy
miracle. It is never allowed to sink from the consciousness of the
audience. Twice the story is actually told (although it is a familiar
one), once during the conversation with Pelasgus and the second
time in a detailed version during the second stasimon. The
passages By the breathing caress of Zeus; by gentle touch;
held by the breath of Zeus; seeds mighty of solemn mother;
the several mentions of the name of Epaphus; the appeals to
Zeus, the ancestor; in fact, the very name of Zeus, forever
recurring, act as a leitmotif throughout, bringing to mind the
origin of this claim to virginity.
Their hubris is their claim to virginity. This claim of a fate
that sets them apart from womanhood is arrogance indeed. It
stems from their own interpretation: Calf of Zeus born with a
fateful name: Epaphus, Caress.
Dr. Hedwig Spier, in the Classical Journal 575
Another point of parallel with Egyptian lore is to be found in the
imagery of this scene of the conception of Epaphus. Recall the fact that
the Greeks identified Zeus with Lord Amen.576 Given that fact, it is
interesting to find that Egyptian imagery likewise depicts Amen as
impregnating virgins with a mere touch of a hand. This can be seen in

Sharples, loc. cit.
Froma L. Zeitlin, Patterns of Gender in Aeschylean Drama: Seven against
Thebes and the Danaid Trilogy, in Cabinet of the Muses , eds. M. Griffith and
D.J. Mastronarde (Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1990), 111.
Leonard Woodbury, Apollos First Love, Transactions and Proceedings of
the American Philological Association 103 (1972): 565.
Hedwig Spier, The Motive for the Suppliants Flight, The Classical Journal
57, no. 7 (1962): 316.
See pp.56 (and n.144), 97-100, and 140.
Figures 47 and 48. The first of these is a drawing of a vase dated to the
5th century BCE, currently at the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna. It
depicts Zeus impregnating Io through the touch of his hand. As can be
seen, there is nothing sexual about this touch. The second illustration is
of a scene from the Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut, 15th cen. BCE,
which depicts the alleged conception of Hatshepsut Makara (or Ramaka).
Lord Amen is seen impregnating her mother with but a touch, as he holds
an ankh, the Egyptian symbol for life, up to the mothers nose. Since
Zeus was considered to be Amen, the similarity seen in these two
illustrations is conspicuous, and further strengthens the fact of their

Fig. 47: Zeus impregnating a virgin with a mere touch of his thunder-weilding hand as
Hermes kills her captor Argus.

Fig. 48: Amen impregnating a virgin with a touch of the hand.

Along with conception by a touch of the hand, another parallel is that

each of these touch-born children had a cow for a mother. Naturally,
for Epaphus, this was Io. For Hatshepsut Makara, this bovine mother was
one of the Seven Hathors, possibly even Nut, as the texts call this Hathor
lady of the sky. One might be prompted to ask that if the queen of
Egypt gave birth to Hatshepsut, how then can a cow goddess be her
mother too? The answer is because she was believed to have been born
again, this time from a Hathor cow. This was perhaps a memory of the
Opet Festival, instituted during her reign,577 or one of the several other

Hosam Refai, Notes on the Function of the Great Hypostyle Hall in the
Egyptian Temple: A Theban Approach, in Egyptology at the Dawn of the
Twenty-First Century, Volume 1: Archaeology, ed. Z. Hawass (Cairo: The
American University in Cairo Press, 2003), 394.
Peter I. Bogucki, Encyclopedia of Society and Culture in the Ancient World:
Volume 1 (New York: Facts on File, Inc., 2008), 464.
festivals which involved a ritual rebirth of the reigning king. 578 From
then on, she (or more likely, her ka, of which the Hathor had become the
source) was said to be reborn and rejuvenated on a daily basis. Therefore,
similar to how Osiris had two fathers, Hatshepsut Makara had two
mothers. One of those mothers having been a cow, also like Osiris, and
Epaphus as well.
Hathor, she reneweth her birth. Thebes is in joy. Ramaka, while
endures the sky, thou endures.
A gift to thy ka, Hathor, queen of the gods, giving life, by the King
Ramaka and the King Menkheperra, like Ra, eternally.
Said by Hathor, the lady of Hermonthis, the lady of heaven, queen
of the gods, who resides in Serui; my daughter, the beloved
Ramaka, I have come my daughter of my bowels, Ramaka,
my (child) of gold. I am thy mother with a sweet milk. I have
suckled thy Majesty with my breasts; they impart to thee life
and happiness. I kiss thy hand, I lick thy flesh with my gentle
tongue coming out of my mouth. Thou art born and renewed
every day, on the arms of thy father Amon, who grants that all
the lands may be under thy feet.
Said by Hathor, the protectress of Thebes, the divine cow, the
divine mother, the lady of the sky, the queen of the gods, who
looks at her (child), who licks the [child] she brought forth. I
have come to thee, my daughter, my beloved king Ramaka.
I am thy mother, who formed thy limbs and created thy

Ann M. Roth, Hatshepsuts Mortuary Temple at Deir El-Bahri: Architecture as

Political Statement, in Hatshepsut: From Queen to Pharaoh, eds. C.H. Roebrig,
R. Dreyfus and C.A. Keller (New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2005),
151 n.3.
Lana Troy, Religion and Cult during the Time of Thutmose III, in Thutmose III:
A New Biography, eds. E.H. Cline and D.B. OConnor (Ann Arbor: The University
of Michigan Press, 2006), 140.
Betsy M. Bryan, Antecedents to Amenhotep III, in Amenhotep III:
Perspectives on His Reign, eds. D.B. OConnor, E.H. Cline (Ann Arbor: The
University of Michigan Press, 1998-2004), 30.
Bell (1997), 157, 179.
Remler (2000-10), 141.
Shrine of Hathor at Deir El Bahari 579

Fig. 49: The touch-born Hatshepsut being nursed by her cow mother, much like the
touch-born Epaphus and his cow mother, both of whom had connections to Osiris.

In addition to nonsexual hand-touch conception and bovine birth, yet

another parallel here is that the mothers of both Epaphus and
Hatshepsutat least up to this point in their respective storieswere
identified as virgins. Thats right. Hatshepsuts mother was none other
than Queen Ahmose, the very same Ahmose mentioned on p.169. And as
the scholars Dr. Bergman and Dr. Ringgren stated there, Ahmose was
explicitly referred to as a virgin, in spite of having been married. They
also explained that this is further evidenced by the fact that her husband
was referred to as a young child, too young to consummate. Bergman

Edouard Naville, The Temple of Deir El Bahari: Part IV (London: Egypt
Exploration Fund, 1901), 2-4. (Emph. added.)
and Ringgren also pointed out that these details were included in the
narrative so that the claim of the sole fatherhood of Amen cannot be
disputed. The mother was a virgin at the time of conception.
(Amon, king of the gods of Thebes, sends the messenger god
Thoth to the Temple of Karnak to search for the virgin that was
noticed by him because of her beautiful nature.)
Then Thoth went away.
And he reported to the king of the gods:
This virgin you spoke of, she that shines among the nobles, is
called Ahmose (born of the Moon).
She is more beautiful than all the women in the whole country.
She is the exalted lady of king Thutmose I.
His Majesty is just a boy.
(Thoth leads the king of the gods to the queen.)
There came this glorious God Amon, Lord of the Thrones of the
Two Lands, after he took the form of her husband.
They found her in the beauty of her palace in repose.
She awoke from the scent of God and laughed before his majesty.
He immediately went to her and burned for her.
He lost his heart to her.
She could see him in the form of a god, after he was come near to
She cried to see his beauty.
His love penetrated her limbs.
The palace was flooded by the smell of God.
All of his fragrances were (fragrances) of Punt.
The majesty of this god did to her everything he wanted.
She pleased him by herself, and kissed him.
The Legend of the Birth of Hatshepsut 580
Now, there are several scholars out there who are of the opinion that
this narrative also indicates copulation took place at some point between
Ahmose and Amen (in the form of her husband). While some of the
phrases used in the narrative are certainly ambiguous enough to allow for
such a conclusion if one were so inclined, there are some things to bear
in mind here. First, regardless of whatever the text might allude to, the
imagery that depicts the actual conception itself in a visual manner
obviously does not contain any sexual phenomena whatsoever, as can
clearly be seen in Fig. 48. Secondly, one must also take note of a few

Siegfried Schott, Altgyptische Liebeslieder: Mit Mrchen und
Liebesgeschichten (Zrich: Artemis-Verlag, 1950), 89-90. (Emph. added.)
statements recorded by Plutarch that elaborate upon the Egyptian views
of reproduction between gods and humans. At the very least, they were
the views of the Egyptians by his time- the 1st century CE.
That an immortal god should take carnal pleasure in a mortal
body and its beauty, this, surely, is hard to believe. And yet the
Aegyptians make a distinction here which is thought plausible,
namely, that while a woman can be approached by a divine spirit
and made pregnant, there is no such thing as carnal intercourse and
communion between a man and a divinity.
Plutarch, Lives: Numa 4.4 581
To this Tyndares the Spartan subjoined: it seems no
incredible thing, that the deity, though not after the fashion of a
man, but by some other certain communication, fills a mortal
creature with some divine conception. Nor is this my sense; but the
Egyptians who say Apis was conceived by the influence of the
moon, and make no question but that an immortal god may have
communication with a mortal woman. But on the contrary, they
think that no mortal can beget any thing on a goddess, because they
believe the goddesses are made of thin air, and subtle heat and
Plutarch, Moralia 718A-B 582
The touch of Zeus hand is indeed a different matter from
impregnation by celestial light; but it may be noted that Plutarch,
referring to gods begetting children on mortal women, refers to
them doing so not as a mortal man would but through other
touchings, haphai, and shortly afterwards refers to Apis being
produced by the touch, epaph, of the moon.
Dr. Robert W. Sharples, Theophrastus of Eresus: Sources for his
Life, Writings, Thought & Influence, Commentary Volume 5,
Sources on Biology 583
Plutarch reported that the Egyptians believed there was no such thing
as sexual intercourse between gods and humanity, and that a human can

Plutarch, Lives, in Plutarchs Lives: Volume I, trans. B. Perrin (London:
William Heinemann Ltd., and Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press,
1914-59), 319. (Emph. added.)
Plutarch, Moralia, in Plutarchs Lives and Writings VIII: Essays and
Miscellanies Volume Three, eds. A.H. Clough and W.W. Goodwin (Boston: Little,
Brown, and Co., 1909), 401-02. (Emph. added.)
Sharples, loc. cit. (Emph. added.)
only be impregnated by a god through some other type of contact, e.g., a
touch of the hand to the nostrils, etc. Part of the reason for this was
because certain deities were believed to have bodies made of air, fire,
and water, making copulation with a solid human impossible. This would
seem to include gods such as Shu- god of the wind, or Tefnut- goddess of
moisture, although it would obviously exclude gods such as Geb, whose
very body forms the earth itself. This, however, does seem to apply to
Lord Amen as well, whose true form is hidden and invisible, just like
the wind. Hence Ahmose could only see Him when He was in disguise,
and He only manifests tangibly to the world as Ptah or Re and their
various forms/hypostases. This leads right into another detail worth
touching upon here, which is the reference to Zeus impregnating the
virgin with a breathing caress, i.e. with both his touch and his breath
(see Aeschylus, Suppliants 41-47). Generation by means of divine breath
is another recurring theme to be found in stories about Lord Amen-Re. In
fact, recall His impregnating the virgin cow with a flash of His light/fire.
Well, sources have recorded that His light/fire exudes from His breath,
and that His fiery breath/wind produces life.
This god is in this fashion:
When Re calls out to him,
there comes forth the flame which is in his mouth,
he lighting up by means of that which is in his mouth.
Book of the Solar-Osirian Unity, pl. 20C 584
One of the most important elements in this annotation is the
equation of light and breath; these two life-giving elements are the
results of the call of Re in the fourth scene of the third register in
the Sixth Division of the Book of Caverns, and in the Seventh
Address to Re in the Great Litany. The call of the sun brings light,
for it is the Ax.t-eye of the sun which calls out. The second scene in
the third register of the Second Division of the Book of Caverns,
which parallels this scene in the presence of the sun depicted within
the hn-chest of Osiris, also stresses the breath-giving call of the sun:
Oh divine eye ... whom the Datians see, with the
result that they breathe ...
The breath of the divine mouth can be the light of the sun ,
whose flaming breath the Second Shrine shows pouring into the
necks of the headless mummies. ... Speaking and fire are found in

Darnell (2004), 457. (Emph. added.)
association: of the sun god it is said md.wt=f m Hdy.t, his speech is
Dr. John C. Darnell, The Enigmatic Netherworld Books of the
Solar-Osirian Unity 585
You have made heaven remote, so that you can ascend to it
and see all that you have created, you who are a unique one,
but millions of lives are in you for you to animate them,
for the breath of life to their nostrils is the sight of your rays.
Amarna Short Hymn 586
Your skin is the light,
your breath is the fire of life (enxt),
all precious stones are united on your body.
Your limbs are the breath of life to every nose,
inhaling you brings life.
Hymn of Ramesses III 587
These gods in this form,
their corpses upon the mound,
they, placing their heads in front of the mysteries,
receiving the light of the Re,
and breathing by means of its ray(s):
It is, however, by means of Res voice when he calls to them, that
they become bright.
Book of the Earth, R6.B.1.73, Text 36 588
The Eye of Re Burns in Its Coffin
An oval containing a disc just above the register line. A tongue
of flame, designated brilliance (Ax), emerges from the center of
the oval, with two smaller tendrils, represented as dotted lines,
spreading outward from it. Four gods flank the oval, with their arms
extended downward, toward it. The text explains that the gods hold
their hands above the eye of Re and the mysterious sarcophagus,
which is beneath the brilliance of his eye, and that the flame
(rkH) rises up from the sarcophagus, after the gods have been
permitted to breath that which is inside of it.

Darnell (2004), 100-01, 113, 365. (Emph. added.)
Assmann, (1995-2009), 81. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 181-82. (Emph. added.)
Roberson (2007), 639. (Emph. added.)
Dr. Joshua Roberson, The Book of the Earth: A Study of Ancient
Egyptian Symbol-Systems 589
Amen-Re can even transmit this breath through His Mehen serpent,
the ouroboros-snake that protrudes from the solar-halo on Res head.590
The blessed dead can be said to be reborn from the coils of
the Mehen-snake, and from the fiery breath of the serpent as well.
For this reason fire emanates from the noses of the snakes, for this
flaming breath appears to have been expelled through the serpents
nostrils. Before each of the rising, mummiform beings is a disk
shining light onto the foreheads of the mummies.
Dr. John C. Darnell, The Enigmatic Netherworld Books of the
Solar-Osirian Unity 591
The fiery breath of Amen-Re is light, and it is life, even causing the
dead to be reborn into life. If His breath can cause re-birth, then it stands
to reason that it can cause birth as well. Of course, it has already been
shown that it can, given the fact that His flashing light caused the birth of
Osiris-Apis. Yet this generative property of His breath is attested to
elsewhere as well.
The disks in the bellies of the goddesses and the light entering
their mouths recall a portion of the Coffin Texts chapter 1099:
Dr ntt rn n Ra m Xt nt N tn saH=f rn=s
for the name of Re is in the belly of this N, and his
honor in her mouth
The goddesses represent the Netherworld as the womb of the
sun, impregnated through their mouths by the rays of the sun.
Book of the Solar-Osirian Unity, pl. 13B 592
Compare the hymn to Amun at Hibis temple where the
Ogdoad say of that deity: Ha.w=f m swH, His limbs are the wind.
Similarly, in the hymn to Amun-Re in the temple of Ramesses III
at Karnak, that king says to the deity: ha.w=k tAw r fnd nb, Your
limbs are the breath for every nose. ...
The egg in our text is mentioned in conjunction with the wind,
which is well attested in Egyptian sources as a prerequisite of life. A

Ibid. 238. (Emph. added.)
Hornung (1999), 78.
Darnell (2004), 122.
Ibid. 148.
number of texts refer to the generative or life-quickening powers
believed to be inherent in that element. See, for example, the
account of the birth of the divine child as a result of the union of
wind and fire preserved in the mammisi of Kom Ombo. In the
mammisi at Edfu, Khnum is said to be sipy sA m X.t nf nfr m rA=f,
the one who fashions the son in the womb (with) the fair breath
from his mouth. ...
Of the deities mentioned thus far in our cosmology, Amun is
the one most closely associated with the wind. He can be identified
with the four winds, or they can be said to constitute his diadem.
Numerous Egyptian sources attest to his role as the incarnation of
this element or the god who dispenses its life-giving power. In the
mammisi of Nekhtnebef at Dendera, for example, Amun is
addressed thusly: ntk di TAw r fnD nb .... ntk sanX TA m-Xn StA.t=f,
It is you who gives breath to every nose ...., it is you who causes the
fledgeling to live within its egg. Similarly, in the New Kingdom
hymn to that god in P. Boulaq 17, he is called rdi Taw.w n nty m
swH.t, giver of breath to the one who is in the egg. Among other
epithets, Amun is addressed as swH mn m x.t nb, the wind that
endures in all things.
Dr. Mark J. Smith, On the Primeval Ocean 593
The Egyptians apply the name Zeus to the wind.
Plutarch, Moralia 365E 594
Conception of life through divine breath seems to be indicated in the
story of Hatshepsuts conception as well, via the repeated references to
her virgin mother Ahmose breathing in the fragrance of Amen, being
awakened by it, feeling it. The visual depiction shows Amen (whose
limbs are the wind) impregnating her by touching His limb to her nose,
an appendage responsible for breathing, further indicating that Ahmose
was impregnated by inhaling the life-giving breath/vapors of Amen into
her nostrils. No copulation was even necessary.
So given all of this, had Plutarch or anyone else living in the 1st
century CE inquired of Egyptians as to the conception of Hatshepsut by
Amen, no doubt such a person would have been told that Hatshepsut was
indeed born of a virgin, regardless of however Hatshepsuts scribes
might have originally intended the text to come across. Moreover, the
ancient Egyptians were not bashful about sex, so one has to wonder why

Smith (2002), 59, 60, 63. (Emph. added.)
Plutarch, in Babbitt (1936-62), 91.
there would even be any ambiguity in the text, especially when the
accompanying picture has no ambiguity at all- it is entirely nonsexual. So
corroborating that ambiguity in the text with-
Plutarchs testimony,
the accompanying picture of the conception,
the idea that inhaling divine breath/wind could impregnate,
the idea that Amens limbs were made of wind,
Ahmoses inhalation of Amens fragrance,
the explicit reference to Ahmose as a virgin,
and the Hatshepsut-Epaphus birth parallels
-then one is well justified in interpreting Hatshepsuts birth here as a
virgin birth, even if the matter is not absolutely conclusive beyond all
dispute. At the very least, it can be said with absolute certainty that
Hatsheput did indeed have a nonsexual conception by a virgin mother,
even if ones opinion is that Ahmose was subsequently deflowered by
this form of Amen prior to Hatshepsuts actual birth. So yes, this legend
is definitely a virginal conception, but only likely to be a virgin birth (yet
definitely understood as a virgin birth by at least the 1st century CE).

There shall the Vultures be Gathered

Another piece of evidence to corroborate with all of this is the fact

that Ahmose is shown in Figure 50 wearing the vulture cap. This is
significant because of certain alleged Egyptian beliefs about the
reproductive qualities of vultures.

The Egyptians fable the whole species [of vultures] is female,

and they conceive by receiving the breath of the East Wind, even as
the trees do by receiving the West Wind.
Plutarch, Moralia 286C 595

Plutarch, Moralia, in Plutarchs Moralia: Volume IV, trans. F.C. Babbitt
(London: William Heinemann Ltd., and Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University
Press, 1936-99), 141. (Emph. added.)
The belief that the vulture represented femininity and
motherhood, and the related ideas that there were only female
vultures and that they were virgin born, without a male begetter,
thus appears to come from Egypt. In an Egyptian Demotic papyrus
from the second century CE, we can read the following words of
the goddess Mut: I am the noble vulture (nryt) of the male
brother, the lord of Thebes, i.e. the noble vulture of which no male
exists. This Egyptian statement that there were only female
vultures is confirmed by various Graeco-Roman writers.
Dr. Herman Te Velde, in Servant of Mut: Studies in Honor of
Richard A. Fazzini 596
They say, too, that among vultures there are only females,
which become parents alone.
Tertullian of Carthage, Adversus Valentinianos 4.10 597
It is said that no male vulture is ever born: all vultures are
female. And the birds knowing this and fearing to be left childless,
take measures to produce them as follows. They fly against the
south wind. If however the wind is not from the south, they open
their beaks to the east wind, and the inrush of air impregnates
them, and their period of gestation lasts for three years.
Aelian, On the Characteristics of Animals 2.46 598
I have to say that the Creator showed in the birth of various
animals that what He did in the case of one animal, He could do, if
He wished, also with others and even with men themselves. Among
the animals there are certain females that have no intercourse with
the male, as writers on animals say of vultures; this creature
preserves the continuation of the species without any copulation.
Why, therefore, is it incredible that if God wished to send some
divine teacher to mankind He should have made the organism of
him that was to be born come into being in a different way instead
of using generative principle derived from sexual intercourse of

Herman Te Velde, The Goddess Mut and the Vulture, in Servant of Mut:
Studies in Honor of Richard A. Fazzini, ed. S.H. DAuria (Leiden: Koninklijke Brill
NV), 244. (Emph. added.)
Tertullian of Carthage, Adversus Valentinianos, in The Ante-Nicene Fathers:
Volume III, eds. A. Roberts and J. Donaldson, trans. A. Roberts (Peabody:
Hendrickson Publishers, 1885-1994), 509.
Aelian, On the Characteristics of Animals, in Aelian: On Animals, Books 1-5,
trans. A.F. Scholfield (London: William Heinemann Ltd., and Cambridge, Mass.:
Harvard University Press, 1958), 145.
men and women? Moreover, according to the Greeks themselves
not all men were born from a man and a woman.
Origen Adamantius, Contra Celsum 1.37 599
Amen, Mr. Adamantius, amen; it couldnt have been stated any
better. The Lord God provided a natural metaphor for the miracle of
virgin birth in the example of the vulture. Since it was believed to be
exclusively female, by default it could only reproduce
parthenogenetically, as per that belief. As Dr. Te Velde affirmed, this
means that for the Egyptians the vulture was a symbol of femininity and,
of course, virgin motherhood. Thus it is fitting to see the virgin Ahmose
donning the cap of the vulturethe symbol for parthenogenesis, for
virgin motherhoodduring the moment of her impregnation. Also, just
as vultures were believed to have been impregnated by inhaling
breath/wind, Ahmose was impregnated by inhaling through her nostrils
the breath/wind of the limbs of Amen. These facts combined with all the
material just previously covered concerning the birth legend of
Hatshepsut even further strengthens the idea that this legend was meant
to be understood as a virgin birth.
Now, to bring this back around to the virgin birth of Osiris, do recall
the image in Fig. 42 on p.163. It shows the mother of Osiris, Nut,
likewise wearing the vulture cap. The reason is obvious- it is because
Nut too was understood, in at least some traditions, to have given virgin
birth just as vultures were believed to have done. And the mechanism for
her impregnation was a flash of light from the fiery breath of Re, just as
virgin vultures were said to be impregnated by breath. It should surprise
no one then to read the following scripture:
A vulture has become pregnant with the King in the night at
your horn, O contentious(?) cow.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 352 569 600
This Utterance brings it all together- the King, the cow, the vulture,
and pregnancy. The mother of the King, who represents Osiris, was

Origen Adamantius, Contra Celsum, trans. Henry Chadwick (Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press, 1953-2003), 36. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1969), 112.
already identified as early as Utterance 1 as Nut, who is the Great Wild
Cow. The King split open her womb. As Griffiths states:
Since it is Osiris who was the son of Nut and Geb, the King
here enjoys another transferred blessing ... Cf. Pyr. 1428d-e: This
King does not know his first mother whom he has known. It was
Nut who bore both this King and Osiris. 601
Here his mother Nut is also likened to a vulture, and in the context
of pregnancy. In fact, this Pyramid Text sounds just like a description of
Fig. 43- the vulture is said to be at the horns of the cow, and that is
exactly what is seen in Fig. 43 where the vulture of Nuts headdress is
situated directly beneath her horns. Thus this is apparently a reference to
a pregnant long-horned Nut wearing the vulture cap, a symbol of virgin
birth, which further indicates that her conception of Osiris should be
understood as parthenogenetic just like a vulture. This was another
Osirian attribute the deceased wished to emulate. Just as Nut was
associated with the bee, another symbol of parthenogenesis, Nut the
long-horned, Great Virgin who cannot copulate also dons the
vulture upon her head as a sign of her virgin motherhood.
Some antagonists might wish to complain about quoting Plutarch
because he wrote in the 1st century CE, which was very late in respect to
ancient Egyptian history. However, it should be kept in mind that
because Plutarch lived during that time, the same sources available to
him were also available to any other authors who might have written of a
virgin birth in the 1st century. This would include certain virgin birth
legends revered by many of those same antagonists. And unlike those
heathen, we still have plenty of sources, many of which have already
been referenced, that far pre-date Plutarch and yet corroborate with him.

Griffiths (1980), 48, n.39.
Chapter Four
Suffered under the pompous Typhon,
Was Killed, Crucified, and was Buried

And the Brother shall Deliver up the Brother to Death

Once the chosen son of Lord Amen-Re came into this world, a
mysterious voice was heard proclaiming The Lord of All advances to
the light.602 The scriptures tell that his mother Nut, goddess of Heaven,
spoke (from Heaven, naturally) the words The King is my eldest son
who split open my womb; he is my beloved, with whom I am well
pleased.603 Time passed and the virgin-born child increased in wisdom
and stature, and in favour with God and man. At the age of 28, he
ascended to the throne of Egypt and had a glorious reign of 28 years,
paralleling the ~28 day orbit or life cycle of the moon.604 He went on
to do many great things, such as traveling the world teaching mankind
about religion, law, sowing and reaping of grain and wine, etc., etc.605 It
was a golden age. However, not everyone was happy about that. In a tale
as old as time, the eldest son was made heir to the fathers estate,
provoking jealousy in the younger sibling, who sought out to usurp his
brothers birthright. Seth, known to the Greeks as Typhon, is the younger
brother of Osiris. It is said that he came out red, all over like an hairy
garment, like an ass, so it could be said he was as a wild ass among
men;606 these being two recurring details in the archetypal stories of the
striving brothers. Seth was next in line to inherit the throne after his
brother Osiris, and it seems that envy and impatience got the better of
him as he plotted a conspiracy to assassinate Osiris.
Typhon contrived a treacherous plot against him and formed a
group of conspirators seventy-two in number. He had also the co-

Plutarch, in Babbitt (1936-62), 33.
Faulkner (1969), 1. (Emph. added.)
Plutarch, in Babbitt (1936-62), 37, 103.
See pp.120-21.
Diodorus, in Oldfather (1933-67), 301.
Plutarch, in Babbitt (1933-62), 73-75.
operation of a queen from Ethiopia who was there at the time and
whose name they report as Aso. Typhon, having secretly measured
Osiriss body and having made ready a beautiful chest of
corresponding size artistically ornamented, caused it to be brought
into the room where the festivity was in progress. The company was
much pleased at the sight of it and admired it greatly, whereupon
Typhon jestingly promised to present it to the man who should
find the chest to be exactly his length when he lay down in it. They
all tried it in turn, but no one fitted it; then Osiris got into it and lay
down, and those who were in the plot ran to it and slammed down
the lid, which they fastened by nails from the outside and also by
using molten lead. Then they carried the chest to the river and sent
it on its way to the sea through the Tanitic Mouth.
Plutarch, Moralia 356C 607
They have found Osiris, his brother Seth having laid him low
in Nedit; when Osiris said Get away from me, when his name
became Sokar.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 532 1256 608
You shall obey Horus.
It is he who has restored you. ...
It is he who saved you from every ill
Which Seth did to you.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 587 1588, 1595 609
Has [Seth] slain you or has his heart said that you shall die
because of him?
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 306 481 610
It is Horus who will make good what Seth has done to you.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 357 592 611
Hear [what] Horus [has done for] you ... he has slain for you
him who slew you.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 670 1976-77 612

Ibid. 37. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1969), 200. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 239-40. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 94.
Ibid. 115.
Ibid. 285. (Emph. added.)
You have relieved Horus of his girdle, so that he may punish
the followers of Seth. Seize them, remove their heads.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 535 1286 613
O Osiris the King, take the severed(?) heads of the followers
of Seth.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 136 614
Isis moaning greatly and Nephthys weeping because of this
god, Lord of the gods, conspiracy being in seeing him in the Great
Place by him who would harm him ... Injury has been done to him
in his castle by him who would harm him . Seize the Evil One who
is in darkness, execute sentence upon his confederates ... and
execute sentence on him who harmed you.
Coffin Texts, Spell 49 I, 215, 220-21 615
O my father Osiris, here am I; I have come to you, for I have
smitten Seth for you, I have slain his confederacy, I have smitten
them who smote you, I have cut down them who cut you down.
Coffin Texts, Spell 303 IV, 56 616
I have felled your foes for you, I have driven off for you
those who rebelled against you, I have warded off Seth for you, I
have spat on his confederacy for you.
Coffin Texts Spell 315 IV, 97 617
Seth has fallen because of me, I have made his confederacy
slip(?) because of that on account of which he wandered.
Coffin Texts Spell 316 IV, 105 618
I have set a limit to the confederacy of Seth, I have effected
their slaughtering, I have put them in the place of execution.
Coffin Texts Spell 595 VI, 213 619
Horus who is at the head of the living protects his father

Ibid. 203. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 27. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1973), 45-46. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 222. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 237. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 239. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1977), 192. (Emph. added.)
Osiris, he has stopped the movements of him who slew his father.
Coffin Texts Spell 16 and 17 I, 51-52 620
What he shall kill is Seth the enemy of his father Osiris.
Coffin Texts Spell 148 II, 213 621
Horus has caused the Children of Horus to muster for you at
the place where you drowned. O Osiris the King , take your natron
that you may be divine.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 33 25 622
Horus has mustered the gods for you, and they will never
escape from you in the place where you drowned.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 364 615-16 623
Your eldest sister is she who ... found you on your side in the
river-bank of Nedit.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 482 1008 624
[...] says Isis; I have found, says Nephthys, for they have seen
Osiris on his side on the bank [...]. Arise [...] my brother, for I have
sought you.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 694 2144-45 625
O Thoth, vindicate Osiris against his foes in ... The great
tribunal which is in the Two Banks of the Kite(?) on that night of
the drowning of the great god in Andjet.
Coffin Texts Spell 337 IV, 331 626
He (Seth) let him (Osiris) be drowned.
Coffin Texts Spell 227 III, 261 b 627
May I have power over the water as Seth had power when he

Faulkner (1973), 10. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 125.
Faulkner (1969), 7. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 119. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 169-70. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 303. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1973), 272. (Emph. added.)
Herman Te Velde, Seth, God of Confusion: A Study of His Role in Egyptian
Mythology and Religion, trans. G.E. van Baaren-Pape (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1967-
77), 85.
harmed (awA) Osiris in that night of the great confusion.
Coffin Texts Spell 353 IV, 396 a, b 628
Gebs words to Horus: Go to the place in which your father
was drowned. ... Osiris was drowned in his water. Isis and
Nephthys looked out, beheld him, and attended to him. Horus
quickly commanded Isis and Nephthys to grasp Osiris and prevent
his drowning (i.e., his submerging).
The Memphite Theology, 11a, 62 629
Oh, fair youth, who departed at the wrong time; young man,
whose time it was not! ... Ihay! You are protected, you who were
drowned in the nome of Aphroditopolis!
Bremner-Rhind Papyrus, Songs of Isis and Nephthys
1.14-15 & 6.2 630
Osiris, drowned one, Ptah, Nut ... Isis.
Greek Magical Papyrus XII.80 631
Are you the byssus robe of Osiris, the divine Drowned, woven
by the hand of Isis, spun by the hand of Nephthys?
Demotic Magical Papyrus xiv. 160 632
According to another tradition, Osiris drowned in the Nile.
Dr. George Hart, Egyptian Myths 633
He was shut in a chest or sarcophagus and dumped in the Nile

Ibid. (Emph. added.)
Lichtheim (1973-2006), 52, 55.
Steve Vinson, Through a Womans Eyes, and in a Womans Voice: Ihweret
as Focalizor in the First Tale of Setne Khaemwas, in Ptolemy II Philadelphus
and his World, ed. P. McKechnie & P. Guillaume (Leiden: Koninklijke Brill NV,
2008), 328.
Papyri Graecae Magicae, XII.14-95, in The Greek Magical Papyri in
Translation Including the Demotic Spells, Volume One: Texts, Second Edition,
ed. H.D. Betz, trans. H. Martin, Jr. (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press,
1986-96), 156 n.21.
Papyri Demoticae Magicae, xiv. 150-231, in The Greek Magical Papyri in
Translation Including the Demotic Spells, Volume One: Texts, Second Edition,
ed. H.D. Betz, trans. J.H. Johnson (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press,
1986-96), 204. (Emph. added.)
George Hart, Egyptian Myths (Austin: University of Texas, 1990-97), 39.
by his brother Seth. The drowned one floated down the river
through one of the mouths of the delta into the Mediterranean Sea.
Arthur Cotterell, Oxford Dictionary of World Mythology 634
In the Pyramid Texts, Osiris is said to have been smitten by his
brother Seth in a place called Nedyet or Gehestey; the episode
should perhaps be connected with the traditions that Osiris was
then drowned by Seth.
Dr. John G. Griffiths, in The Oxford Encyclopedia of
Ancient Egypt: Volume 2 635


Okay, so there are a couple of points to touch upon here. The first
one is that the numbering of the assassins who conspired with Seth was
72. There are many natural metaphors to the gospel story which have
been, and will be, mentioned in this book, and there is likewise one that
involves the number 72.
Moreover also the parts of some constellations have an
influence of their own ... being divided at an enormous height into
72 signs, that is, shapes of things or of animals into which the
learned have mapped out the sky. In them they have indeed noted
1600 stars as being specially remarkable for their influence or their
Pliny the Elder, Natural History, 2.41 636
The ancients of the Mediterranean world divided the 1,600 stars of
special significance documented up to that point into 72 constellations.
The parallels between the story of Osiris and certain stellar phenomena
will be covered later, but the fact that there are such correlations supports
the notion that this parallel is significant and deliberate as well. It also

Arthur Cotterell, Oxford Dictionary of World Mythology: The Ideal Quick
Reference Guide to Deities, Spirits, and Myths (Oxford: Oxford University Press,
1979-97), 41.
John G. Griffiths, Isis, in The Oxford Encyclopedia of Ancient Egypt: Volume
2, ed. D.B. Redford, (New York: Oxford University Press, Inc., 2001), 188.
Pliny the Elder, Natural History, in Pliny: Natural History, Books 1-2, trans. H.
Rackham (London: William Heinemann Ltd., and Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard
University Press, 1938-67), 251-53.
suggests that the occurrence of this number in other legends and myths of
the ancient world might also be due to an association with the 72
constellations. This would include other myths from the Fertile Crescent
area which tell of a god or demigod who was betrayed and killed in a
conspiracy involving a group of 72 members (although sources vary,
some claiming 71 members), and/or a god or demigod, perhaps even the
same one, likewise having a group of 72 followers of his/her own.

Baptized into His Death

The second point to touch on concerning this portion of the gospel

tale is the fact that the death of Osiris came by way of drowning, i.e. by
submersion in water. Because of Osiris role as the way to resurrection
and afterlife via identification with and emulation of him, the way in
which he died was considered a special, sacred type of death which was
revered. Death by drowning, or even posthumous submersion, was
believed to be one method for divinizing the deceased and raising them
to new life.
The Lower Register637
The Rescue of the Drowned Ones
In the water rectangle, bodies in various positions are floating
in the water, until Horus helps them to come ashore, and prevents
them from decomposing and decaying, although they have not
been given a regular burial. They share the fate of Osiris, who was
dismembered and thrown into the water by his murderer Seth,
before being rescued by Isis. Here we have the consoling part of
the Amduat, that even those whoby a natural accidentdo not
have the benefit of ritual preparation for the afterlife are preserved
by the divine intervention of Horus.
Dr. Erik Hornung & Dr. Theodor Abt, Knowledge for the
Afterlife: The Egyptian Amduat A Quest for Immortality 638
A special problem was posed by people who drowned in the
Nile and were devoured by crocodiles. In such cases, probably not
very rare, the body was lost and could not be mummified; the
deceased was deprived of the protective mummy form. Several

Of KV34 Amduat Hour 10- see Fig. 50.
Abt (2003), 122. (Emph. added.)
passages in the Books of the Netherworld show that the drowned
reached the shores of the Beyond directly from the Nile, arriving
from the primeval waters and thus into the depths of the world. In
Roman Egypt the drowned were revered and considered especially
blessed, and here the analogy to Osiris, who was thrown into the
water, played an important role. Parts of the tenth hour of the
Amduat and the ninth hour of the Book of Gates resemble one
another in their detailed treatment of this theme. In a large
rectangular poolrepresenting the primeval water, Nunswim
several groups of naked drowned, in quite different positions: some
on their backs, others on their bellies, still other on their sides. In
the Amduat, Horus calls to them from the riverbank, while in the
Book of Gates it is the passing sun god himself who promises that
they will be able to breathe in the water and that their bodies will
not decompose: Your members are not putrefied, your flesh is not
decomposed! Their souls are also provided for, and their bodies
can land uninjured on the shores of the Netherworld, where they
may benefit from all the Beyond has to offer, even without the
ritual burial ceremonies. ... The tomb of Ramesses VI contains a
scene of the deification of the drowned that is similar to that in the
Dr. Erik Hornung, Valley of the Kings: Horizon of Eternity 639
At the beginning of the lower register, we see the falcon-
headed Horus presiding over the scene of apotheosis by
drowning, as Egyptologists call it. The corpses of the drowned are
depicted floating in the primeval waters of Nun. The intent of the
scene is to affirm that despite their unusual fate, these deceased
individuals are among the blessed dead. The mythological model
for death by drowning is Osiris, who was slain by Seth and cast into
the waters of the Nile. The text accompanying the scene states:
Words spoken by Horus to the drowned,
to the upturned, to the outstretched
who are in Nun and belong to the netherworld:...
Rowing for your arms without your being held back!
You prepare the way in Nun with your legs,
without your knees being hindered.
You go forth to the flood and come near to the
You float [to] the great inundation, that you moor
(or: land) at its shores.

Erik Hornung, Valley of the Kings: Horizon of Eternity, trans. D. Warburton
(New York: Timken Publishers, Inc., 1982-90), 138, 145. (Emph. added.)
Your body has not decayed, your flesh has not
decomposed. ...
You are those who are in (the waters of) Nun,
floating in the following of my father,
so that your ba-soul may live!
Dr. Andreas Schweizer, The Sungods Journey through the
Netherworld: Reading the Ancient Egyptian Amduat 640
It is legitimate to associate with this tradition the belief of a
later period that death by drowning was blessed because it was like
the death of Osiris. In the Pyramid Texts the rite of carrying Osiris
in the water is sometimes mentioned, and as Seth is made to do
this, it is reasonable to infer that he is regarded as the enemy who
not only smote Osiris on the bank of Nedyet but also drowned him
in the same place. ... The death by drowning, which is stressed in
the Memphite Theology, seems to be connected with the funerary
rite of carrying the corpse on the Nile, a task which is assigned to
Seth as a punishment, Seth being viewed as embodied in the
barque which bears the shrine and sarcophagus.
Dr. John G. Griffiths, The Origins of Osiris and His Cult
The most significant testament to the journey was the founding
of the Greek city of Antinoopolis, memorializing the drowning of
Hadrians youthful lover, Antinous. According to Egyptian
theology, such a death entailed a special identification with the
drowned Osiris, god of the underworld. Under Augustus,
deification by drowning had provided the rationale for the native
hero cults at the remote temple of Dendur, but Hadrians
Egyptianizing cult of Antinous was extended throughout the
Dr. Robert K. Ritner, in The Cambridge History of Egypt:
Volume One 642
During the Late period (747-332 B.C.), drowning in the Nile
was sometimes reason enough for deification, as was the case with
Pehor and Pehesi, who drowned in the Nile in Nubia at Dendur.
Antinous, the companion of the emperor Hadrian, also was deified
after he drowned in the Nile, and the town of Antinoopolis, the cult

Schweizer (1994-2010), 168-69. (Emph. added.)
Griffiths (1980), 9, 22. (Emph. added.)
Robert K. Ritner, Egypt under Roman rule: the legacy of Ancient Egypt, in
The Cambridge History of Egypt: Volume One, ed. C.F. Petry (Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press, 1998-2008), 15. (Emph. added.)
center for the worship of Antinous, was built on the banks of the
Nile where he died.
Patricia Remler, Egyptian Mythology: A to Z 643
Did this life-giving power of the Nile extend to the gift of
eternal life? For dynastic Egypt the answer must be yes. ... A
second set of data requiring attention in this connection are those
texts which speak of apotheosis by drowning in the Nile .
According to a variety of Pharonic and even late Egyptian sources,
anyone who drowned in the Nile was divinized in a very special
way. Such a person became a Hsy, a Blessed Drowned Osiris.
Dr. Robert A. Wild, Water in the Cultic Worship of Isis
and Sarapis 644
In Egyptian culture, death by drowning had long been
associated with the mythology of Osiris, and conferred special
status on the deceased as a praised one (Egyptian hesy).
Herodotus reports that those who drowned in the Nile were treated
as a special category of dead, as though something more than
human. ...
Herodotus 2.90: When anyone, be he
Egyptian or stranger, is known to have been carried
off by a crocodile or drowned in the river itself, such
a one must by all means be embalmed and tended
as fairly as may be and buried in a sacred coffin by
the townsmen of the place where he is cast up; nor
may any of his kinsmen or his friends touch him, but
his body is deemed something more than human,
and is handled and buried by the priests of the Nile
Dr. Ian Moyer, in Initiation in Ancient Greek Rituals and
Narratives: New Critical Perspectives 645
The Nile waters provide life. Thus for the dead to be submerged, i.e.
baptized, in those waters could preserve and regenerate their bodies, raise

Remler (2000-10), 49-50.
Robert A. Wild, Water in the Cultic Worship of Isis and Sarapis (Leiden: E.J.
Brill, 1981), 97-98. (Emph. added.)
Ian S. Moyer, The Initiation of the Magician: Transition and Power in
Graeco-Egyptian Ritual, in Initiation in Ancient Greek Rituals and Narratives:
New Critical Perspectives, eds. D.B. Dodd and C.A. Faraone (London: Routledge,
2003), 221, 232 n.12.
them from the dead, and grant them eternal life. All of this occurs in
emulation of Osiris, who was killed and buried in those waters, only to
later rise to eternal life. This baptism of the dead represents the death,
burial, and resurrection of a son of God. The sources quoted above
prove that, thus silencing the filthy tongue of the heathen who try to
belittle any significance of baptism in ancient Egypt. Many of them try to
claim that there only existed washings for purification rituals (Fig. 53)
which were so generic that most cultures had similar rites, thus making
such Egyptian rites of no significance. They also deny that any such rites
had a meaning behind them which involved death, burial, and
resurrection. But alas, that was exactly the meaning which the Egyptian
baptism of the dead entailed (and it also far predated the Common Era
and even the 14th cen. BCE). Therefore it may be said that so many of
us as were baptized into Osiris were baptized into his death. Therefore
we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Osiris was
raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also
should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in
the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his
resurrection: Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen
with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised
him from the dead.

Fig. 50: Twelve followers of Osiris baptized into his death and then received into
eternal life by Horus; based on the tenth hour of the Book of Amduat as seen in the tomb
of Thutmose III, KV34, 15th century BCE.646

See p.209, n.637.
Fig. 51: Horus posthumously baptizing Osiris. The waters bear ankh and was symbols,
representing life and power, thus this baptism aids in restoring Osiris to fullness of
life after death. Horus has cleansed you with cold water.647

Fig. 52: The anointing of Ramesses IV, from the Temple of Khonsu at Karnak, 12th
century BCE, invigorating him with holy water.

Faulkner (1969), 150.
And the Sun was Darkened

Continuing with the death of Osiris, recall how earlier it was

mentioned that there are stellar phenomena that parallel certain details of
the gospel story. Well, after Osiris had died it was as though nature itself
cried out in mourning. The scriptures report that at some point even the
sun itself turned dark after Osiris died and made his journey to the West.
It would continue to do so in cycles thereafter, as it still does even today.
No doubt this was a gesture from Lord Re in homage to His son. And so
this was yet another Osirian detail which the deceased tried to emulate.
May the dark(ened sun) make Osiris blessed on earth and
powerful in the west.
Book of the Dead, Spell 168 A b S 10 648

Fig. 53: The dark sun mourning over Egypt, in remembrance of the death of Osiris.

T.G. Allen (1974), 164-65. (Emph. added.)
Thou Shalt Surely Die

When the topic of the death and resurrection of Osiris is discussed

with the heathen, often times they will try their best to deny this. While
there are several different arguments in circulation which they employ in
their blasphemy against this fact, the argument of relevance at the
moment is the bizarre claim that in Egyptian lore Osiris never died at
all.649 And since he never died then obviously he never resurrected, thus
this claim undermines the most important tenet of the Perennial Gospel
and of our faith- the hope of bodily resurrection from death and eternal
life. The scriptures, however, utterly refute this falsehood of the heathen.
Nut puts her hand on me just as she did for Osiris on the day
when he died.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 505 1090 650
An offering text in which the sacrificial ox represents Seth
Address to the ox by the priest impersonating Horus
O you who smote my father, who killed one greater than you,
you have smitten my father, you have killed one greater than you.
Address to the dead king
O my father Osiris this King, I have smitten for you him who
smote you as an ox; I have killed for you him who killed you as a
wild bull.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 580 1543-44 651
O Osiris the King, you have gone, but you will return, you
have slept, [but you will awake], you have died, but you will live.
Stand up and see what your son has done for you, wake up and
hear [what] Horus [has done for] you. He has smitten for you him

F. Harold Smith, Article V, The Church Quarterly Review 95, no. 189 (1922):
95. But Osiris was not really dead.
Kleo Kay, The Gods & Goddesses of Ancient Egypt,
goddesses-of-ancient-egypt/ (accessed July 13, 2013).
undo,Did Osiris really die? Above Top Secret (September 22, 2006),
Faulkner (1969), 181. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 234. (Emph. added.)
who smote you as [an ox], he has slain for you him who slew you as
a wild bull.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 670 1975-77 652
Is there someone who would carry off his brother after the
Great Mooring?* See, Seth has come in his own shape and has
said: I will cause the gods body to fear, I will inflict injury on him, I
will slaughter him.
*I.e. death; perhaps more specifically the death of Osiris.
Coffin Texts, Spell 50 I, 227 653
O you gods, come with these kindred of mine, be vigilant as
regards this god who is unconscious.*
*Here a euphemism for dead.
Coffin Texts, Spell 52 I, 238-39 654
I live and I die, I am Osiris.
Coffin Texts, Spell 330 IV, 168 655
I died yesterday, I raised myself today, I returned today, and a
path has been prepared for me.
Coffin Texts, Spell 513 VI, 100 656
I have died the death, (yet) I am more alive than the Ennead.
Coffin Texts, Spell 515 VI, 102 657
I died yesterday; (I raised myself today) and have returned
Book of the Dead, Spell 179 a S 658
Give your whole attention to the Mourned One, now that he is
dead for lack (of breath after) his Brother slew (him). Geb made
him (i.e., the brother, Seth) into a kT-crocodile with not one to
lament him.
Book of the Dead, Spell Pleyte 166 S 1 659

Ibid. 285. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1973), 47, 49 n.29. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 51, n.2. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 254. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1977), 145. (Emph.added.)
Ibid. 156. (Emph. added.)
T.G. Allen (1974), 190. (Emph. added.)
That last text obviously is referring to Seth murdering Osiris by
drowning him in the Nile. So that covers the fact that Osiris was indeed
believed to have died, in just the same sense as the pharaohs or any other
creature had died. And in some of those texts quoted, his death was
juxtaposed with the fact that he lived again, showing that there was a
perceived contrast between the two; they were not the same state. They
were clearly understood to be two entirely distinct, and in fact opposite,
states of being.
However, some antagonists in their obstinacy will dig in their heels
and rebut with something to the effect of yeah, yeah, we know that there
are texts that use the word dead in reference to Osiris, but what we
mean is that he did not really die in the truest sense of the word, you
know, the way we mean it when we talk about mortals dying. This they
claim on basis of yet another claim that the gods of ancient Egypt were
immortal, and thus their bodies were allegedly impervious to change.
Some argue as though Osiris was merely called dead in word only, as
sort of a citizenship status required for residency in the netherworld.
They claim he was merely rendered temporarily incapacitated after being
dismembered by Seth, since he could not move, but was still clinically
alive the entire time and immediately regained control of his faculties
upon being reconstituted. Somewhat like the popular novel series
Twilight, in which the vampires are likewise only incapacitated by
dismemberment and can only be truly destroyed by being burned to
ashes to avoid reconstitution. A few heathen have even likened Osiris to
a Lego set and Frankensteins monster in this regard.660 Since, as per this
argument, his dead status was in word only, he never actually
biologically died in the same sense as mortals do, but rather his so-called
death was more like a state of suspended animation similar to when
Captain America was frozen for several decades in the recent film The
Avengers. As evidence for such alleged distinctions it has even been
claimed that Osiris dead body neither rotted nor decomposed.661 And
that statement right there truly reveals the foolishness of the heathen, for
that claim is, as they say, complete and utter bulls**t.

Ibid. 215. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. (Emph. added.)
Now, it may be that such foolishness happens on account of
ignorance more than deliberation, since, as covered on pp.9-18 & 168,
there are variations in Egyptian lore, just as heathen lore has been no
exception to variation and alteration either. Egyptian lore is also so
extensive that it is understandable that one cant keep up with it all. Just
as many of these same heathen would admit that many people are
misinformed about their own religion on account of such variations,
variations have also led to much confusion and disagreement about
Egyptian lore and religion as well. So while there might exist a story or
two out there somewhere that gives an impression in line with some of
these heathen arguments- to go so far as to claim that no source exists
that confirms the contrary is fallacious, e.g. to think that Osiris never
died, or rotted, or decomposed, etc., when there are a multitude of
scriptures that explicitly state just the opposite.
Anyway, as for the aforementioned heathen arguments, the first to be
addressed will be the assertion that Osiris was only ever called dead in
word only, even though all the while he has been what mortals would
consider alive. Some have even explained it as though residency in the
realm of the dead as judge of the dead was allegedly conditional
upon having died, so Osiris simply had his citizenship status marked as
dead and has kept it as such ever since, in spite of physically being
quite alive and well and healthy same as any other god. I have even
observed a satire video by a certain Carpenter apologist662 state: But
strangely, Osiris family makes an unusual request of Dr. E, and it
astonishes her. If you can believe it, the family tells me they want Osiris
declared dead. Hes walking around and talking, and they want him
declared dead? Unbelievable! The mystery is explained when Osiris
reveals that upon his death he was offered a job as the judge of the
dead, contingent upon him being dead. Bewildered, Dr. E signs Osiris
death certificate, and the case is closed with no autopsy. The so called
resurrection of Osiris isnt a resurrection at allin other words, it is
not the restoration of a formerly dead body to a glorified state.663
Oh, but indeed it was. The subsequent glorified state will be
addressed in the next chapter, but it is indeed attested to in ancient

Egyptian sources and by scholarly literature. For the current chapter, the
concern is with the false claims that it is not a restoration of a formerly
dead body and thus merely declared dead. In particular the latter, to
which the video also added that Osiris was actually still reckoned to be
dead even after his reanimation Dr. E closes the case of Osiris with
some final thoughts. You know, this is the first time Ive ever had
someone walk out of my morgue declared dead. And he actually
seemed happy about it.664
Actually, things were just the opposite. Osiris death was considered
a taboo topic in ancient Egyptian society. Now his resurrection, that was
a good thing and something they repeatedly mentioned to no end. But his
death, this was regarded as somewhat of a dark and closely guarded
secret. Not that it wasnt common knowledge, but rather the fact that it
was something they did not wish to give any credence to, and death in
general was something they did not wish to even give any power to
(unless it was towards their enemies, of course). In this respect one might
liken it to how saying the name of Voldemort in the popular Harry
Potter novels and films was likewise taboo. There was a certain dark
magic that was associated with saying his name, and the protagonists of
the series did not wish to lend any power to that magic, so they avoided
saying his name and substituted it with he who must not be named.665
Everyone certainly knew Voldemorts name, they just refused to give it
any acknowledgement. This was similar to how the Egyptians treated
death and especially the death of Osiris in particular.
This is rooted in the concepts covered on pp.23-26, that of
sympathetic magic and the power of the spoken word. To repeat Dr. Bob
Brier once again:
Three elements are essential to the magical act: the spell, the
ritual, and the magician. The spell is what must be said for the act
to have its desired effect. It may be crucial that the words be uttered
properly, with a certain intonation. To the ancient Egyptian, words
were extremely powerful: The word was the deed; saying
something was so made it so.666

Ibid. (Emph. added.)
J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (New York: Scholastic
Inc., 2007), 273, 280, 312, 389, 445, 448-49.
Brier (1980-2001), 11. (Emph. added.)
Words have power, thus even the mere acknowledgement of death
lent power to death, however minute, and that was something the ancient
Egyptian wished to avoid. Likewise, the denial of death removed death,
while the acknowledgment of life, resurrection, immortality, etc. lent
power to those things and aided in making them a reality. Perhaps one
could liken such a belief to, in a very broad sense, the so-called law of
attraction that is popular today in certain schools of thought, such as the
New Age movement, and promoted in best-selling books like The Secret.
Or one might also liken it to certain religious ideas about faith vs. doubt.
Having faith even the metaphorical size of a mustard seed can manifest
something into reality, so it is claimed, or cause one to literally walk on
water. Yet even the slightest of doubt can quickly cause one to sink
beneath the waves. Because of this belief that words and images have
such power, there are only a handful of ancient Egyptian texts that ever
explicitly acknowledge the death of Osiris while there are literally
countless passages that acknowledge his resurrection and subsequent
immortality, as well as that of the deceased who identified with him.
Death is an undesired situation which stands in contrast with
the good life on earth (anx). The texts which are sent along with the
dead into his tomb, deny with the greatest emphasis that he has
died. These texts have a magical effect. By denying death they
annihilate him and revive the dead. In the meantime these texts
show that death as an absolute destruction is feared.
Dr. Jan Zandee, Death as an Enemy: According to Ancient
Egyptian Conceptions 667
The essential feature of Egyptian mortuary beliefs and customs
was the denial of death and the continued affirmation of eternal
Dr. Ann Rosalie David, in Encyclopedia of the Archaeology of
Ancient Egypt 668
Death as termination of life is denied and the king is with Nut
living in the sky. In his primary raison dtre he is king of those
who are not, namely the dead envisaged as living in Duat. In the
New Kingdom we meet more and more with Osiris as Lord of the

Zandee (1960), 46. (Emph. added.)
A. Rosalie David, mortuary beliefs, in Encyclopedia of the Archaeology of
Ancient Egypt, ed. K.A. Bard (London: Routledge, 1999), 644. (Emph. added.)
Living (in this case clearly emphasizing the Egyptian denial of
death since it refers to those in the Underworld), Lord of the
Universe and Ruler of Eternity.
Dr. George Hart, The Routledge Dictionary of Egyptian Gods
and Goddesses 669
The construction of graves in cemeteries, aimed at defeating
the annihilation of individuals, contributed to a collective denial of
death, the termination of physical existence in the here and now, as
the epitome of chaos.
Dr. Janet Richards, Society and Death in Ancient Egypt:
Mortuary Landscapes of the Middle Kingdom 670
Afterlife in the kingdom of Osiris received much greater
emphasis in a later period, but the Egyptian denial of the finality of
death is apparent even at this early stage. A well-known utterance of
the Pyramid texts states O King, you have not departed dead, you
have departed alive (Faulkner, 1969, p.40). Such denial, however,
should not be understood as a simplistic negation of the fact of
death but as an orientation towards the notion that the chaos of
death could not overrule the order of life . The myth of Osiris
showed how death could be reordered and rearranged so as to
reconstitute life; not ordinary life, but transfigured, divine life.
Dr. Angela Sumegi, Understanding Death 671
To the end of affirming mans hope of immortality, the
Egyptian texts often appear to deny the reality of death itself. The
dead are even spoken of as being the living ones (anxw). For
example, Spell 36 of the Coffin Texts says of the deceased: Today
he has arrived in the land of the living. In like manner, Spell 76
has in one version the title of Becoming a living god (pr m ntr
nfi). Other texts also quite clearly deny the very fact of death, Spell
144 having two such denials within its text:
You have departed living: you have not departed dead.
Rise up to life, for you have not died.

Hart (1986-2005), 112, 118. (Emph. added.)
Janet Richards, Society and Death in Ancient Egypt: Mortuary Landscapes of
the Middle Kingdom (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005), 61.
(Emph. added.)
Angela Sumegi, Understanding Death: An Introduction to Ideas of Self and
the Afterlife in World Religions (Chichester: Wiley Blackwell, 2014), 57.
This denial of the effective power of death indicates that in the
mind of the Egyptian death was in fact the beginning of life.
Dr. Vincent A. Tobin, Theological Principles of Egyptian
Religion 672
The violent death of Osiris at the hands of Seth is so well
known that we may happily omit to document it in detail. But
references to it are characteristic of the restraint with which the
Egyptians report the death of their gods . Texts speak of the tomb
and the resurrection of Osiris, and both are even depicted
pictorially; there are allusions to what his enemies did to him, his
deathly tiredness, and the laments of his sisters, Isis and
Nephthys, are mentionedbut Egyptian texts of the pharaonic
period never say that Osiris died. In the cult celebration of the
Osiris myth at the festival at Abydos this detailthe gods violent
deathremains unmentioned. Again and again we find this
avoidance of explicit statements that a god died , whoever the god
may be; for the text, and still more the image, would fix the event
and even render it eternal. In the Egyptian view it is unthinkable
that the death of Osiris or his dismemberment by Seth should be
represented pictorially and thus be given a heightened, more
intense reality. So we must content ourselves with allusionswhich
are, however, clear enough. Plutarchs De Iside et Osiride, which is
free from Egyptian restraint, informs us even about the gory details
of the story; a century before him Diodorus (I, 22) mentioned the
burial of Isis.
Dr. Erik Hornung, Conceptions of God in Ancient Egypt 673
Although the Egyptian texts do not ever specifically say that
Osiris diedalmost certainly because such a statement would be
believed to magically preserve the reality of the gods deaththey,
and later Classical commentators, do clearly show that Osiris was
slain at the hands of his antagonist Seth, and was mummified and
Dr. Richard H. Wilkinson, The Complete Gods and
Goddesses of Ancient Egypt 674

Vincent A. Tobin, Theological Principles of Egyptian Religion (New York:
Peter Lang Publishing, Inc., 1989), 130. (Emph. added.)
Erik Hornung, Conceptions of God in Ancient Egypt: The One and the Many,
trans. by J. Baines (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1971-96), 152-53. (Emph.
Egypt was one of the cultures of denial, one of the societies
that do not accept death and thus, in their concept of man, draw a
sharp boundary between the spirit, immortality, uniqueness, and
the remainder of nature. Egyptians certainly did not accept
death, but they also did not repress it. It was on their minds in
many ways, unlike us, who also do not accept it. In Egyptian
culture, as in no other, we may observe what it means not to accept
death and yet to place it at the center of every thought and deed,
every plan and act, to make it in every possible way, the theme of
the culture they created. The Egyptians hated death and loved life.
In ancient Egypt, more so than in any other culture, we
encounter death in many forms, in mummies, statues, reliefs,
buildings, and texts; but these were not images of death , they were
counterimages, articulations of its negation, not of its affirmation.
This is my second thesis. If we wish to learn something about the
experience of death in Egypt, we must turn these images inside out.
They depict the deceased as he appeared in life the Egyptians
assumed toward this experience an attitude based on trust in the
power of counterimages, or rather in the power of speech, of
representation, and of ritual acts, to be able to make these
counterimages real and to create a counterworld through the
medium of symbols.
The world of Egyptian mortuary religion was indeed a
counterworld. Egyptian culture was one of those societies that do
not accept death but rather rebel against death as an empirical fact
with all the power at their disposal. This rebellion assumed the
form of religion, that is, the creation of a counterworld.
Dr. Jan Assmann, Death and Salvation in Ancient Egypt 675
Therefore, much like how the name of Voldemort was substituted to
avoid actually saying it, so also the death of Osiris was substituted with
analogous concepts to avoid acknowledging it as much as possible. Most
of all this included the analogy of sleep, an analogy also often employed
in the religious literature of the heathen.
Death indeed is not usually admitted. As Osiris, the tired god,
was able to revive from his sleep, so the King will awake and stand
and take possession of the body which temporarily had left his
control. Death is really only a sleep, then, a phase of tiredness; and
the firm denial of it in other references shows that it is denied both

Richard H. Wilkinson, The Complete Gods and Goddesses of Ancient Egypt
(New York: Thames & Hudson Inc., 2003), 20. (Emph. added.)
Assmann (2001-05), 17-19. (Emph. added.)
as a state and as an occurrence. Awake, thou that sleepest and
arise from the dead.
Dr. John G. Griffiths, The Origins of Osiris and His Cult 676
This cyclical concept reflects the unending process of the
bodys life in death as though in sleep. As Osiris is revived in sleep,
so is the king, in this denial of death.
Dr. Frederick E. Brenk, in Illinois Classical Studies 677
Death and sleep concur in many respects: in lying down
without motion, the unconsciousness. The ancients saw
congeniality in them: full life was suspended. The position of the
corpse, on its side or squatting, was the position of sleep. Turning
to the other side is awakening, resurrection.
A.8.a. wrD, to be tired.
The title of a spell reads: In order not to allow to be tired of
heart in the realm of the dead. About the dead Osiris it is said:
Tiredness, tiredness in Osiris, tiredness of limbs in Osiris. They
are not tired. They do not waste away. The deceased does not
remain dead: Osiris N.N. does not hasten. He does not become
tired in this country for ever. The dead Osiris is called wrD ib,
tired of heart. WrD as an equivalent of death occurs in the
Lebensmde. I alight, after you have got tired (i.e., are deceased),
the soul says to the man. In a song of the harpers it is said about the
dead: How tired is this just, noble one.
A.8.a. bAn, to sleep.
How near is sleep, how far is the passing away. Kd is
favourably used here of a sleep, from which one can awake, bAn is
unfavourable. This great (Osiris) lies down, while he has passed
away. Oh N.N., great of sleep, great of lying down. This great one
lies down, while he has passed away. The dead are spoken of as
the tired ones. Oh tired one, oh tired one, who sleeps, oh tired
one in this place, which you do not know.
Dr. Jan Zandee, Death as an Enemy: According to Ancient
Egyptian Conceptions 678
The ancient Egyptians despised death and sought any means they
could to avoid it. They cherished life and wanted it to last forever. They
refused to give death any validity and little-to-no acknowledgement.

Griffiths (1980), 66-67.
Frederick E. Brenk, A Gleaming Ray: Blessed Afterlife in the Mysteries,
Illinois Classical Studies 18 (1993): 154.
Zandee (1960), 81-83.
They certainly did not wish to lend it any of the power they believed was
contained in words and images. Hence, in quite the contrary fashion to
the afore-cited satire video, the holy scriptures record how Osiris death
was actually once considered a closely guarded secret and that all who
found out about it must themselves be put to death.
This is Horus who has come that he may recognize his father
Osiris the King. It is dangerous to him that the Kings death should
be proclaimed(?) in the establishments of Anubis, and no one who
hears this shall live. O Thoth, have no pity on anyone who hates
the King. O Thoth, go and see if the King is proclaimed as dead(?),
for it is dangerous to him.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 542 1335-36 679
Although the priests of Osiris had from the earliest times
received the account of his death as a matter not to be divulged, in
the course of years it came about that through some of their
number this hidden knowledge was published to the many.
Diodorus of Sicily, Library of History 1.21.1 680
The taboo subject of the murder of Osiris could be alluded to
by saying that Seth had laid the djed on its side.
Dr. Geraldine Pinch, Egyptian Mythology: A Guide to the
Gods, Goddesses, and Traditions of Ancient Egypt
The Mystery of Osiris
Every reader of Herodotus Histories has been struck by the
extreme care with which this author avoids mentioning the name of
Osiris. He imposes no comparable taboo on any other divine name
or any other religion, only on Osiris and only on Egyptian religion.
Neither the other classical writers nor the Egyptian texts themselves
know of such a taboo regarding a divine name. It is evidently a
matter of a misunderstanding. Nevertheless, Herodotus was
entirely correct in surrounding this particular god with the aura of
special mystery. While the cult of Osiris knew no taboo regarding
the gods name, it was filled with other taboos. One, the most
important, we have already encountered in a Coffin Text: outcry,

Faulkner (1969), 210. (Emph. added.)
Diodorus, in Oldfather (1933-67), 65. (Emph. added.)
Pinch (2002-04), 128. (Emph. added.)
Osiris was lord of silence, and no one was to raise his voice in his
So it is seen here that even outside of Egypt it was understood that
there was a special air of secrecy regarding Osiris.
All the taboos and mysteries surrounding the god Osiris had
something to do with death. There were many of these in the
institution of the Abaton, a sacred grove containing a tomb of
Osiris, which was so inaccessible that even birds could not alight on
its trees. In the later periods of Egyptian history, all the larger
temples seem to have had such an Abaton. It was the locus of the
reliquary cult of the parts of Osiris body, which had been torn
asunder by Seth and then buried by Isis in each of the nomes. In
this connection, Diodorus relates a story that anticipates Lessings
parable of the ring. Isis desired that Osiris tomb be secret and yet
revered by all the inhabitants of Egypt. She therefore created a
corpse in the form of Osiris around each individual limb and
prepared the priesthood of each nome by disclosing that she had
entrusted to them alone the burial of her husband under conditions
of strictest secrecy. Each nome thus believed it possessed the true
corpse and guarded this knowledge as a great mystery. It is not the
name but the death of Osiris that Diodorus designates as
aporrhetos, a mystery not to be spoken of. This word is aptly
chosen. The rituals that had to do with the death and
resurrection of Osiris were shrouded with mystery, for the corpse
had to be protected from attacks by Seth (Greek Typhon). The
mystery of Osiris was the fact of his death. In this connection,
death and mystery obviously went hand in hand. The condition of
Osiris demanded the strictest secrecy.
Dr. Jan Assmann, Death and Salvation in Ancient Egypt 683
Everything on the last several pages completely contradicts the
aforementioned heathen assertion that Osiris was merely declared dead
in word only. It was the exact opposite- declaring him dead was
forbidden and the fact that he had ever been dead at all was a forbidden
secret not to be declared, on penalty of execution. While he most
certainly did physically, biologically die just the same as any other living
organism, and while that fact was well known in ancient Egypt, it was to
be treated as a sacred mystery. And as shall be seen in the next chapter,

Assmann (2001-05), 189-90. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. (Emph. added.)
after returning from the deadquite contrary to still being declared
dead thereafterOsiris was in fact referred to as the Living One and
lord of the living.
Next in debunking the heathen dismissal of the death of Osiris is to
address the nature of the mortality and immortality of the ancient
Egyptian gods. As mentioned previously, there are some antagonists who
argue that the Egyptian gods were all immortal by nature, and thus could
never and have never died, at least, not in the same sense as humans and
other organisms do. Needless to say, without a true death, there can be no
The trouble with this argument is that while the gods of ancient
Egypt were indeed understood to have possessed what we would
consider immortality, they were not innately immortal. They had to
obtain immortality, same as mankind. Thats right, the gods entered into
existence just as mortal and temporal as humans. Perhaps less fragile and
vulnerable, but they were still just as susceptible to death. The only
exception one could argue for is Lord Amen, as His true self, but since
He manifests as Re and Ptah, He too experiences mortality.
The gods are mortal, but the ultimate forces of disorder stand
outside space and time and might be termed immortal.
Dr. John Baines, in Ancient Egyptian Kingship 684
Old age and death
The example of the murder of Osiris taught earlier students of
religion that Egyptian gods can be mortal. This phenomenon fitted
badly with ideas about the nature of gods which were then current
gods simply had to be immortal.
Chapter 17 of the Book of the Dead states that every god must
go down into the west, the realm of the dead, on the orders of Re--
who is himself mortal. New Kingdom texts, which place gods and
men on a par by stating that both must go down into the realm of
Osiris, show that the gods in such statements are not just the
blessed dead. In chapter 154 of the Book of the Dead the fate of
death, which is referred to as decay and disappearance, is
claimed to await every god, every goddess, all animals, and all
insects, and there is a similar statement at the beginning of the

John Baines, Kingship, Definition of Culture, and Legitimation, in Ancient
Egyptian Kingship, eds. D.B. OConnor, D.P. Silverman (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1995),
11. (Emph. added.)
Book of Gates, in which the sun god assigned (mankind) to the
hidden place, to which men and gods, all animals and all insects
whom this god created betook themselves.
It has become clear that the Egyptian gods are indeed, as
Plutarch maintained, neither unbegotten nor imperishable. They
begin with time, are born or created, are subject to continuous
change, age, die, and at the end of time sink back into the chaotic
primal state of the world. The nature of the Egyptian gods, whose
temporal limitations we have just learned, is finite in other respects
Dr. Erik Hornung, Conceptions of God in Ancient Egypt 685
Even gods can die
A number of Egyptian texts show that although the gods were
not considered to be mortal in the usual sense, they could
nevertheless die. This is clearly implied in the so-called Cannibal
Hymn of the Pyramid Texts, and is of great importance in the
development of even some of the greatest cults of Egyptian religion-
particularly those of the netherworld god Osiris and the sun god
Divine Demise
The principle of divine demise applies, in fact, to all Egyptian
deities. Texts which date back to at least the New Kingdom tell of
the god Thoth assigning fixed life spans to humans and gods alike,
and Spell 154 of the Book of the Dead unequivocally states that
death (literally, decay and disappearance) awaits every god and
every goddess. Thus, when the New Kingdom Hymn to Amun
preserved in Papyrus Leiden I 350 states that his body is in the
west, there can be no doubt that this common Egyptian
metaphorical expression refers to the gods dead body. From the
Egyptian perspective life emerged from death just as death surely
followed life and there was no compelling reason to exempt the
gods from this cycle. This idea was aided by the fact that the
Egyptians distinguished two-views of eternity: eternal continuity
(djet) and eternal recurrence (neheh). This is clear in statements
such as that found in the Coffin Texts, I am the one Atum created
- I am bound for my place of eternal sameness - It is I who am
Eternal Recurrence (CT 15). The gods could thus die and still
remain in the ongoing progression of time.

Hornung (1971-96), 151, 157, 165. (Emph. added.)
Dr. Richard H. Wilkinson, The Complete Gods and
Goddesses of Ancient Egypt 686
Notice that Hornung explicitly stated there that the gods are subject
to continuous change, which is exactly the opposite of being
impervious to change.687 However, the claim that the gods were
immortal and had bodies impervious to change688 is not entirely
inaccurate, but it is only made possible through the same mechanism that
likewise grants humans immortality and divine bodies- magic. And if our
opponents would read the sources they cite carefully, and pay attention,
they would realize that said sources corroborate689 with this and thus
pose no contradiction to what we preach about mortality.
As for Isis, the Egyptians say that she was the discoverer of
many health-giving drugs and was greatly versed in the science of
healing; consequently, now that she has attained immortality, she
finds her greatest delight in the healing of mankind she
discovered also the drug which gives immortality, by means of
which she also made [Horus] immortal.
Diodorus of Sicily, Library of History 1.25.2-6 690
Thus Isis and Horus were not born immortal; they had to become
immortal after Isis discovered a magical means to do so. Only then were
their bodies made impervious to change. Only then, after having
obtained eternal life, were they able to survive such experiences cited by

Wilkinson (2003), 20-21.
Holding, op. cit.
Dimitri Meeks and Christine Favard-Meeks, Daily Life of the Egyptian Gods,
trans. G.M. Goshgarian (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1993-96), 57. Thus
divine bodies were thought to be impervious to change: that is why even Osiris
dead body could not really rot or decompose.
Ibid. 80. This reconstitution did not bring the corpse back to life. To
accomplish that, all Thoths knowledge and Isiss magic had to be brought into
play. Compare to the previous quote from Meeks p.57. Magic was the
necessary mechanism to reverse the death of Osiris and render him
impervious to change thereafter. See also p.451 of the present work. It
should also be noted that Meeks pp.4-5 confesses to attempting to reconcile
admittedly different & diverse texts into one somewhat cohesive portrayal of
Egyptian mythology. While thats his prerogative, as explained on pp.9-18 of
the present work, such attempts are unnecessary and ultimately unsuccessful.
Diodorus, in Oldfather (1933-67), 81-83. (Emph. added.)
the heathen as examples of this magical imperviousness. Most
commonly this includes non-canonical tales of surviving head
transplants.691 Some even involve Horus and Isis as the recipients, which
of course should be no problem since both had partaken of Isis magic
potion of immortality as shown above. Oddly enough though, some of
the other examples cited by our antagonists arent even circumstances
that are necessarily fatal, and thus being impervious to change would
not even be necessary, such as the castration of Seth.692 Humans have
survived castrations just fine for millennia, so it shouldnt require
anything more impressive for gods to do the same. Another such
example is one that shall come up again later, and that is when Seth
plucked out Horus eye and Horus later retrieved it. First of all, again this
needs no supernatural power since even humans have survived losing
eyeballs and having eye transplants, etc. Second of all, this is a story that
shows how Horus was indeed susceptible to change at one point. And
again, he needed the use of magic to rectify the situation. The scriptures
state how Horus needed King Osiris (portrayed here by the deceased
king) to heal his damaged eye for him.
O King Spit on the face of Horus for him, that you may
remove the injury which is on him; pick up the testicles of Seth,
that you may remove his mutilation.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 215 140-42 693
Horuss eye and Seths testicles were injured in their struggle
against one another for the throne of Osiris. Spitting was
considered an effective method for preventing or removing injuries.
Dr. James P. Allen, The Ancient Egyptian Pyramid Texts 694
The power transmitted by such purifications may also cure and
resuscitate. Examples of medical spitting are common
throughout the funerary literature , being used within mythological
contexts to cure baldness and weak vision, injuries of the shoulders,
arms and legs, wounds from animal bites, and even instilling breath
in a newborn child. Within these texts, the use of curative spittle is

Holding, op. cit.
Faulkner (1969), 42. (Emph. added.)
J.P. Allen (2005), 62. (Emph. added.)
not limited to the primary gods, but may be applied toand bythe
divinized deceased.
May you spit on the face of Horus for him so that you
may remove the injury which is upon him.*
*Compare also the Abydos stela of Ramses IV, 1.20 (Kitchen
1983b, p.24/2): O Horus, I have spit on your eye after it was taken
by its conqueror.
Dr. Robert K. Ritner, The Mechanics of Ancient Egyptian
Magical Practice 695
So here sight is restored to a blinded eye through the use of spittle.
And this was recorded millennia before the Common Era. This was
actually quite a common motif in ancient Egypt.696 More importantly,
Horus and Seth here were physically damaged, susceptible to injury, and
needed to be healed by an external agent, and through the use of magic.
This proves that they were not understood as innately immortal and
impervious to change, in spite of being born as gods. In fact, both Horus
and Seth even went on to be killed. While thats a story for another time,
this was the case with many gods, because all of them are born mortal.
As cited previously by Hornung and Wilkinson, the Book of the Dead
Spell 154 S 2 states:
Thou hast made to (decay) every God and every goddess, all
quadrupeds, and all worms.697

By this Time He Stinketh

This leads right into the next antagonistic argument that was
mentioned earlier, which is that the supposed evidence that Osiris never
really died is that Osiris body allegedly neither rotted nor
decomposed. As the kids say these days- Epic Fail. Unlike the mere fact
of death itself, which the ancient Egyptians avoided acknowledging, the
rot & decay of Osiris (and of the deceased humans & gods who emulated
him) is very widely attested. In fact, opposite to death itself, rot was
actually considered a type of bitter sweet because the emissions of

Ritner (1993-2008), 79, n.358. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 73-110.
T.G. Allen (1974), 154. (Emph. added.)
putrefaction were considered to have beneficial properties that brought
forth new life and rebirth. No doubt this was observed from natural
metaphors such as the alleged spontaneous generation of various
creatures from decaying corpses, such as the ox-born bees mentioned on
pp.175-83. I will circle back around to this point eventually, but for now
its time to proceed to the holy scriptures.
You shall not tread on the corruption of Osiris.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 412 722 698
Your efflux which issued from the putrefaction of Osiris is yours.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 553 1360-61 699
I have immersed the waterways as Osiris, Lord of corruption.
Coffin Texts, Spell 467 V, 374; 468 V, 385 700
Those waters in which it is dragged are the final putrefaction
from under the ribs of my father Osiris.
Coffin Texts, Spell 479 VI, 38 701
My dissolution* was caused yesterday, I have returned today
I am the Red One.702
*WsT, lit. dilapidation.
Coffin Texts, Spell 513 VI, 98 703
I am Anubis as one who fosters the place of embalming, who
embalmed the god in the hidden place. I have come that I may
cover up corruption and deal with the mummy wrappings, and that
I may pour away the putrefaction after death.
Coffin Texts, Spell 644 VI, 265 704
You have your cold water the putrescence which issued
from Osiris.
Coffin Texts, Spell 833 VII, 34 705

Faulkner (1969), 135. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 213. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1977), 96, 99. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 121. (Emph. added.)
An epithet for the unified Re-Osiris. See Darnell (2004), 199.
Faulkner (1977), 145, n.1. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 220. (Emph. added.)
Osiris indeed(?) is devoid of his flesh, and Isis has stopped for
herself his flesh and his efflux from falling to the ground.
Coffin Texts, Spell 838 VII, 40 706
This is Osiris. The gods come [to you ] in putrescence.
Coffin Texts, Spell 839 VII, 707
Your mother comes to you; see, Nut has come so that she may
join your bones together, knit up your sinews, make your members
firm, take away your corruption.
Coffin Texts, Spell 850 VII, 54 708
I have come that I may see Osiris, and I will live beside him
and putrefy beside him.
Coffin Texts, Spell 1131 VII, 473 709
Give me a good road to the gate of the nether world, (for I) am
acting in behalf of him who is yonder, exhausted, so that he who is
full of pus may reconstitute himself.
Book of the Dead, Spell 64 S 13 710
Horus came from his Fathers seed while the former was
undergoing decay.
Book of the Dead, Spell 78 S 16 711
Bring me the putrid effluent of Osiris.
Book of the Dead, Spell 94 712
I have plunged into [the lakes] like [Osiris], lord of decay.
Book of the Dead, Spell 110 a 6 S 1 713
I come unto thee, son of Nut, Osiris [Thoth] does away with
the evil that clings to thy body by the spells he utters.
Book of the Dead, Spell 183 a S 1 714

Faulkner (1978), 22. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 26. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 27. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 34. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 169. (Emph. added.)
T.G. Allen (1974), 57. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 69. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 77. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 89. (Emph. added.)
O corpse of He-hidden-of-ba, Osiris, ruler of the West,
secret of flesh, hidden of efflux,
whom the dead cannot approach,
who enlivens those within the West by inhaling its (scil.
the corpses) putrefying stench.
Book of Caverns, Division 3 715
To think that Osiris never rotted or decomposed is untenable, and
laughable. The scriptures cant paint any more explicit an image than to
state that his flesh was leaking pus and falling off of his bones. Thus
when the antagonists cite a source claiming that Osiris did not really rot
or decompose,716 emphasis on really, their source does not contradict
the numerous primary sources quoted above but actually corroborates
with them,717 because it is true that Osiris did not completely rot away to
nothing. The rotting that he most certainly did undergo was eventually
reversed and then permanently removed thereafter- all thanks to the use
of magic, such as mummification rituals or the following magical spells
specifically designed for that vey purpose.
Not to rot and not to do work in the realm of the dead.
Coffin Texts, Spell 432 V, 280; 433 V, 281 718
DEAD. The members of Osiris are inert, but they shall not be
inert, they shall not putrefy or shake. [May the putrefaction] of
Osiris [be stopped(?)].
Coffin Texts, Spell 755 VI, 384-85 719
N has made Osiris grow, he has seen his seats which are in the
upper sky, he has purged his efflux.
Coffin Texts, Spell 766 VI, 396 720

Ibid. 200. (Emph. added.)
Colleen Manassa, The Late Egyptian Underworld: Sarcophagi and Related
Texts from the Nectanebid Period (Wiesbaden: Otto Harrassowitz GmbH & Co.
KG, 2007), 40, 47. (Emph. added.)
Meeks (1993-96), 57. (Emph. added.)
See p.237-38.
Faulkner (1977), 73.
Ibid. 288-89.
Ibid. 295.
Remove the efflux which exuded(?) from your flesh, you being
filled and provided with the eye of Horus.
Coffin Texts, Spell 785 VI, 414 721
N is Osiris, Lord of burial, N will not putrefy.
Coffin Texts, Spell 810 VII, 12 722
THE EARTH. [My] corpse will not putrefy in the earth.
Coffin Texts, Spell 822 VII, 23 723
No harm shall happen to thy body, for though art sound; thy
flesh shall not decay.
Book of the Dead, Spell 6C S 1 724
Does a member weary, namely (a member of) Osiris? It has
not wearied, it has not rotted. AS FOR THE ONE WHO
Book of the Dead, Spell 45 S, T 725
Hail to thee, my father Osiris. Thy members shall continue to
exist. Thou hast not decayed, thou hast not rotted, thou hast not
turned to dust, thou hast not smelled, thou has not decomposed.
Thou shalt not become rotten.
Book of the Dead, Spell 154 S 3 726
Again, through the magic power of the spoken word one could
calleth those things which be not as though they were, and make it so.
Denial of the decay of Osiris reversed the decay of Osiris, which of
course would only have been necessary if Osiris actually decayed in the
first place. Which he did, and many a scholar has testified as much.
Isis is able to reverse the decomposition of Osiris body, and
she uses magical spells and breathes life into Osiris.
Dr. Rivka Ulmer, Egyptian Cultural Icons in Midrash 727

Ibid. 307.
Faulkner (1978), 6.
Ibid. 13.
T.G. Allen (1974), 9.
Ibid. 50.
Ibid. 154.
Osiris rested close to a desert dune, where the burning sun
caused his body to decompose. As decomposition progressed,
parts of Osiris body fell away and floated to the north.
Dr. Martin Bommas, in The Oxford Handbook of
Roman Egypt 728
The Osiris myth conjures up the terrors of death only to
conjure them away; the worst forms of decay, after all the worms
have finished their work (Book of the Dead, spell 154), become
an essential condition for resurrection. When the late books
concerning the Netherworld deal with the decay and putrefaction
of Osiris, referring to him as corrupt, the lord of stench, this is
understood in a positive fashion, and the oozing secretions of the
corpse are assumed to be particularly powerful.
Dr. Erik Hornung, The Valley of the Kings: Horizon of
Eternity 729
The unifying element of the scenes and annotations on the
type I sarcophagi is the reconstitution of disparate parts, and since
no ancient title is known, this decorative scheme is here entitled the
Book of Resurrection through Decomposition.
Numerous religious allusions appear in the scenes and texts
surrounding the sarcophagus, but the disparate images all converge
at a central theme: decompositionof the eye of Horus, of the
Osirian corpse, and even of time itselfas a prerequisite to
regeneration and resurrection.
The annotation to an ithyphallic Osiris in the Third Division
of the Book of Caverns describes inhaling the stench of the rotting
Osirian corpse
The scenes on Sides Two and Three apply these cosmic cycles
to the deceased himself through the archetype of Osiris and two
specific processes: the decomposition of the body as a prerequisite
to its resurrection, and the union of the ba and shade with the

Rivka Ulmer, Egyptian Cultural Icons in Midrash (Berlin: Walter de Gruyter
GmbH & Co. KG, 2009), 118. (Emph. added.)
Martin Bommas, Isis, Osiris, and Serapis, in The Oxford Handbook of
Roman Egypt, ed. C. Riggs (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012), 424.
Hornung (1982-90), 116. (Emph. added.)
The rotting corpse of Osiris is often said to have beneficial
results the corpse of Osiris is said to already be rotting when
Horus is born
The long walls (Sides Two and Three) portray and describe
the decomposition and reunification of the body of Osiris.
Dr. Colleen Manassa, The Late Egyptian Underworld 730
Osiris is present in several different forms at once, as will often
be the case in subsequent phases of the journey. His
dismemberment, decomposition, and rebirth are summarized here
by a round object containing a relic of his body, a god personifying
his rotting corpse
In it lies the rotting body of a god who is at one and the same
time Osiris, the sun, and even the deceased king.
The accompanying text explains that this is the corpse of
Osiris ruler of the West, whose decay(ing flesh) is mysterious,
whose decomposition is hidden, whom the dead may not
approach, although those who dwell in the West live on the odor of
his decay.
Dr. Dimitri Meeks and Dr. Christine Favard-Meeks , Daily
Life of the Egyptian Gods 731

This is My Body, Which is Broken

The woes of Osiris were not over yet, however. Isis eventually
recovered his corpse which Seth buried in the waters and reversed its
decomposition. Getting wind of what was going on and what it was
leading to, Seth tracked down the whereabouts of the corpse and, to
ensure that there could be no resurrection, he tore the body into pieces
and scattered them across the earth. His sisters Isis and Nephthys
searched for and collected the dismembered fragments of his broken
body. Then with the aid of the other gods, Isis managed to reassemble
the corpse and make it whole again, preserving it through
O King, your head is knit to your bones for you, and your
bones are knit to your head for you.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 355 572 732

Manassa (2007), 5, 15, 45, 65, 66, 140, 442. (Emph. added.)
Meeks (1993-96), 153, 155, 156. (Emph. added.)
O Osiris the King, Geb has given you your eyes Horus has
reassembled you Isis has reassembled you.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 357 583-84, 592 733
O Osiris the King the gods have knit up your face for you.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 364 609-10, 369 640-43 734
Horus has reassembled your members for you, and he will
not let you perish; he has put you together.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 364 616-17 735
Horus has reassembled your limbs and he has put you
together, and nothing in you shall be disturbed.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 367 635 736
O King; receive your head, collect your bones, gather your
limbs together.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 373 654 737
Your mother comes she will give you your head, she will
reassemble your bones for you, she will join together your
members for you, she will bring your heart into your body for you.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 447 827-28, 450 834-35 738
O Nut, set your hand on me with life and dominion, that you
may assemble my bones and collect my members. May you gather
together my bones at(?) [ there is no limb of mine] devoid of
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 485C 1036-38 739
I have put my brother together, I have reassembled his
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 631 1789 740

Faulkner (1969), 113.
Ibid. 114-15.
Ibid. 118, 122.
Ibid. 119.
Ibid. 121
Ibid. 123.
Ibid. 148-49.
Ibid. 173.
Ibid. 262.
Osiris has filled himself with the Eye of Him whom he begot.
It will raise up your bones, it will reassemble your members for
you, it will gather together your flesh for you.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 637 1800-02 741
O Osiris the King, knit together [your] limbs, reassemble your
members, set your heart in its place!
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 664C 1890-91 742
O King, gather your bones together, resume your members!
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 665A 1908 743
O King, collect your bones, assemble your members, whiten
your teeth, take your bodily heart.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 666 1916-17 744
O King, collect your bones, gather your members together.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 667C 1952 745
Osiris A libation for you is poured out by Isis, [Nephthys
has cleansed you, even your two] great and mighty sisters who
gathered your flesh together, who raised up your members, and
who caused your eyes to appear in your head.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 670 1981 746
Gather together your bones, make ready your members, throw
off your dust O Osiris.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 676 2008-10 747
Behold, the King is at the head of the gods and is provided as
a god, his bones are knit together as Osiris.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 687 2076-77 748
This King comes provided as a god, his bones are knit
together as Osiris.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 690 2097 749

Ibid. 263-64.
Ibid. 274.
Ibid. 275.
Ibid. 277.
Ibid. 282.
Ibid. 286.
Ibid. 289.
Ibid. 296.
My sister, says Isis to Nephthys, this is our brother. Come, that
we may raise his head. Come, that we may reassemble his bones.
Come, that we may rearrange his members.
Coffin Texts, Spell 74 I, 306-07 750
I reassemble the limbs of Osiris, I gather his bones together I
gather the bones of Osiris together and I make his flesh to flourish
Coffin Texts, Spell 80 II, 38, 41-42 751
I am Horus who gathered together these bones of Osiris.
Coffin Texts, Spell 175 III, 61 752
Hail to you, Lady of offerings at whom Osiris rejoices who
gathered together his arms and legs, who laid Osiris down I am
Osiris my members are gathered together.
Coffin Texts, Spell 241 III, 325-26 753
I am Osiris O you who split open my mouth for me and
gathered together for me what issued from my flesh, grant to me
Coffin Texts, Spell 828 VII, 28-29 754
My members are gathered together Join my members
Coffin Texts, Spell 830 VII, 31 755
Take the Eye of Horus which combines your flesh and pulls
together your members.
Coffin Texts, Spell 862 VII, 65 756
I was with the mourners of Osiris I was with Horus on the
day of wrapping the Dismembered One.
Book of the Dead, Spell 1 S 3 757

Ibid. 298.
Faulkner (1973), 69.
Ibid. 84-85.
Ibid. 150.
Ibid. 189-90.
Faulkner (1978), 17.
Ibid. 20.
Ibid. 41.
T.G. Allen (1974), 5. (Emph. added.)
I am put together, renewed, and rejuvenated. I am Osiris.
Book of the Dead, Spell b S 758
I have come unto thee, Osiris (I have) united (for him) his
bones and assembled (for him) his members.
Book of the Dead, Spell 147 g S 5 759
When Osiris was ruling over Egypt as its lawful king, he was
murdered by his brother Typhon, a violent and impious man;
Typhon then divided the body of the slain man into twenty-six
pieces and gave one portion to each of the band of murderers,
since he wanted all of them to share in the pollution and felt that in
this way he would have in them steadfast supporters and defenders
of his rule.
Diodorus of Sicily, Library of History 1.21.2 760
As they relate, Isis proceeded to her son Horus, who was being
reared in Buto, and bestowed the chest in a place well out of the
way; but Typhon, who was hunting by night in the light of the
moon, happened upon it. Recognizing the body he divided it into
fourteen parts and scattered them, each in a different place. Isis
learned of this and sought for them again, sailing through the
swamps in a boat of papyrus. This is the reason why people sailing
in such boats are not harmed by the crocodiles, since these
creatures in their own way show either their fear or their reverence
for the goddess. The traditional result of Osiriss dismemberment
is that there are many so-called tombs of Osiris in Egypt; for Isis
held a funeral for each part when she had found it.
Plutarch, Moralia 358A 761

Ibid. 50. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 139.
Diodorus, in Oldfather (1933-67), 65. (Emph. added.)
Plutarch, in Babbitt (1936-62), 45.
Fig. 54: Depiction of the death and dismemberment (upper-left corner) of Osiris.
Typhon kills Osiris by a ruse, after which he scatters his limbs far and wide, but the
famous Isis collects them.762

H.M.E. de Jong, Michael Maiers Atalanta Fugiens: Sources of an Alchemical
Book of Emblems (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1969), 273.
Fig. 55: Reassembling the broken body of Osiris; from the Temple of Isis at Philae.

While Isis and her search party managed to recover and reconstruct
Osiris sufficiently for resurrection, she still failed to recover one final
portion of his corpse- the phallus. As the symbol of creative power and
manhood, this was unacceptable. Isis therefore fashioned a prosthetic
replica. No doubt this was related to the aforementioned principle of
sympathetic magic in ancient Egypt, but more on that in chapter 8.
Now Isis recovered all the pieces of the body except the
privates but the privates, according to them, were thrown by
Typhon into the Nile because no one of his accomplices was
willing to take them. Yet Isis thought them as worthy of divine
honours as the other parts, for, fashioning a likeness of them, she
set it up in the temples, commanded that it be honoured, and
made it the object of the highest regard and reverence in the rites
and sacrifices accorded to the god. Consequently the Greeks too,
inasmuch as they received from Egypt the celebrations of the orgies
and the festivals connected with Dionysus, honour this member in
both the mysteries and the initiatory rites and sacrifices of this god,
giving it the name phallus.
Diodorus of Sicily, Library of History 1.21.5, 22.6-7 763

Diodorus, op. cit. 67, 71.
Of the parts of Osiriss body the only one which Isis did not
find was the male member, for the reason that this had been at
once tossed into the river, and the lepidotus, the sea-bream, and
the pike had fed upon it; and it is from these very fishes the
Egyptians are most scrupulous in abstaining. But Isis made a
replica of the member to take its place, and consecrated the
phallus. In fact, the tale that is annexed to the legend to the
effect that Typhon cast the male member of Osiris into the river,
and Isis could not find it, but constructed and shaped a replica of it,
and ordained that it should be honoured and borne in
processions, plainly comes round to this doctrine, that the creative
and germinal power of the god, at the very first, acquired moisture
as its substance, and through moisture combined with whatever was
by nature capable of participating in generation.
Plutarch, Moralia 358B, 365C 764
Uncover for him my injured privy parts, let him see my
woundsso says Osiris.
Coffin Texts, Spell 36 I, 142 765
So all of the pieces of Osiris, in one way or another, were accounted
for and the corpse was completed, ready for resurrection. But the
breaking of the body of our Lord Osiris was not just a side detail
included only for dramatic effect, it had great significance. First, there is
the natural metaphor to it which God placed in the cycles of the moon.
Hence Osiris is often likened to the moon, and like his Father Re, he is
occasionally referred to as both the sun766 and the moon- for the moon
reflects the light of the sun, acting as the sun of the night.767
The moon is the Ba of Osiris.
Dr. Louis V. abkar, A Study of the Ba Concept in Ancient
Egyptian Texts 768
O King you are born in your months as the moon.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 412 727, 732 769

Plutarch, op. cit. 47, 89.
Faulkner (1973), 26. (Emph. added.)
This is due to his fusion with Re during nighttime as Res avatar for the
netherworld. See pp.124-30.
Ulmer (2009), 277.
Louis V. abkar, A Study of the Ba Concept in Ancient Egyptian Texts
(Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1968), 14.
Osiris the King may you be manifest at the New Moon.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 483 1012 770
O you Sole One who shines as the moon.
Coffin Texts, Spell 93 II, 64 771
O you Sole One who rises in the moon, O you Sole One who
shines in the moon.
Coffin Texts, Spell 152 II, 260 772
Coffin Texts, Spell 155 II, 308 773
(O) Osiris (Where, pray, art thou on blacked-out-moon day
while the corpse is silent?)
Book of the Dead, Spell 64 variant S 18 774
Hi, Osiris. Thou dawnest as the Moon.
Book of the Dead, Spell 162 variant S 2 775
August Mummy, Osiris Raise thyself, Moon that circles the
Two Lands.
Book of the Dead, Spell Pleyte 168 S 52, 54 776
Ho you of On, you rise for us daily in heaven!
We cease not to see your rays!
Thoth, your guard, raises your ba,
In the day-bark in this your name of Moon.
You come to us as child in moon and sun,
We cease not to behold you!
Lamentations of Isis and Nephthys 4 777

Faulkner (1969), 135.
Ibid. 170.
Faulkner (1973), 93.
Ibid. 131.
Ibid. 133.
T.G. Allen (1974), 59.
Ibid. 158.
Ibid. 219-20.
Lichtheim (1980-2006), 118. (Emph. added.)
In this section Osiris is viewed as a cosmic god manifest in
both sun and moon.
Dr. Miriam Lichtheim, Ancient Egyptian Literature Volume
III: The Late Period 778
The wood which they cut on the occasions called the burials
of Osiris they fashion into a crescent-shaped coffer because of the
fact that the moon, when it comes near the sun, becomes crescent-
shaped and disappears from our sight.

Fig. 56: Coffer barque of Osiris, crescent-shaped like the waning moon; from the Temple
of Seti I at Abydos, 13th century BCE.

Wherefore there are many things in the Apis that resemble

features of the moon, his bright parts being darkened by the
shadowy. Moreover, at the time of the new moon in the month of
Phamenoth they celebrate a festival to which they give the name of
Osiriss coming of the Moon, and this marks the beginning of the
spring. Thus they make the power of Osiris to be fixed in the
Moon, and say that Isis, since she is generation, is associated with
him. There are some who would make the legend an allegorical
reference to matters touching eclipses; for the Moon suffers eclipse
only when she is full, with the Sun directly opposite to her, and she
falls into the shadow of the Earth, as they say Osiris fell into his
Plutarch, Moralia 368A-E 779

Ibid. 121 n.5. (Emph. added.)
Plutarch, in Babbitt (1936-62), 103-07.
Fig. 57

Also, during the new moon phase of the lunar cycle, the sun and
moon appear as though they merge into one entityespecially during
solar eclipsesjust as Osiris repeatedly merges with Re into one entity
as covered earlier. Another interesting point of union between the sun
and moon is that the lunar year synchronizes with solar year in cycles of
33 years.
The lunar year recedes approximately 11 days each solar year,
with the result that in each 33 years it passes through all the solar
Dr. Ziauddin Sardar, in New Scientist 780
Some means of coordinating the lunar and solar cycles was
necessary. Otherwise, these festivals would soon become divorced

Ziauddin Sardar, The astronomy of Ramadan, in New Scientist 94, no. 1311
(June 24, 1982): 854.
from their original agricultural contexts and run throughout the
year every 33 years or so.
Dr. Robert Hannah, Time in Antiquity 781
With a 354-day year, the same day of the monthly calendar
would fall on the same day of the solar year once every 33 years.
Dr. Nicholas Postgate, Bronze Age Bureaucracy: Writing and the
Practice of Government in Assyria 782
Lunar cycles ... fall about 10 days earlier on the Western
calendar than they did the previous year, and complete an entire
circuit on the Western calendar every 33 years.
Dr. Carol Delaney, Investigating Culture: An Experiential
Introduction to Anthropology 783
Every sequence of 12 consecutive months (technically known
as "lunar year") which then rotates through all seasons, accumulating
in about 33 years a deficit of about one solar year.
Dr. Otto E. Neugebauer, A History of Ancient Mathematical
Astronomy 784
Lunar years of 354 days, each consisting of 12 lunar months,
which in 33 years run through all the seasons.
Dr. Anton Pannekoek, A History of Astronomy 785
How fascinating. After thirty-three years the life cycle of the moon
reunites with the life cycle of the sun. In terms of Egyptian
astrotheology, it would appear as though Osiris returned to live along
side his Father Re at the end of thirty-three years, just as the heathen god
The Good Shepherd was later said to have returned to his father to live
alongside him after having departed thirty-three years earlier. Anyway,
there is great overlap in the cycles of the moon and the sun, hence there

Robert Hannah, Time in Antiquity (London: Routledge, 2009), 31.
Nicholas Postgate, Bronze Age Bureaucracy: Writing and the Practice of
Government in Assyria (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013), 52 n.27.
Carol Delaney, Investigating Culture: An Experiential Introduction to
Anthropology (Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell, 2004-11), 88.
Otto E. Neugebauer, A History of Ancient Mathematical Astronomy (Berlin:
Springer-Verlag, 1975), 354.
Anton Pannekoek, A History of Astronomy (New York: Dover Publications,
Inc., 1951-89), 27.
is no conflict in regarding the same deity as both a solar and a lunar god.
These two celestial bodies are some of the signs God placed in the
heavens to tell the gospel story of Osiris.
It was already touched upon earlier on p.203 how the 28 years of the
reign of Osiris as king over Egypt, beginning when he was 28 years old,
is paralleled by the ~28 day orbit786 of the moon. Thus it is
approximately 14 days787 from full moon to new moon and vice versa.
Fourteen days from a complete moon until there is no moon left in the
sky at all. One piece of the moon is metaphorically broken off each day
until finally no more pieces remain- the moon has vanished, buried in the
darkness of the night. So also the body of Osiris was broken into 14
pieces and scattered until there was no more Osiris left, he too had
vanished, by the hand of his brother Seth. And just as Isis and the gods
sought out the pieces, collected them and put them back together one by
one until Osiris was made whole again, the moon is reassembled piece
by piece, one piece a day everyday until all 14 pieces have been put back
together and made whole again. Hence the following from Plutarch in
Moralia 368B:
The dismemberment of Osiris into fourteen parts they refer
allegorically to the days of the waning of that satellite from the time
of the full moon to the new moon. And the day on which she
becomes visible after escaping the solar rays and passing by the sun
they style Incomplete Good; for Osiris is beneficent, and his
name means many things, but, not least of all, an active and
beneficent power, as they put it. The other name of the god,
Omphis, Hermaeus says means benefactor when interpreted. 788
A similar numerical parallel seems to be implied by Diodorus, in this
case correlating to the full ~28 days rather than just ~14 (26 pieces
shared by the conspirators + 1 piece for Seth + 1 discarded phallus = 28).
Other texts also vary in the exact number of pieces, but 14 does appear to

It is 27.33 to be more precise, although it is common knowledge that
traditionally this has been rounded up to an even 28 days.
Peter T. Wlasuk, Observing the Moon (London: Springer-Verlag London Ltd.,
2000), 5.
Plutarch, in Babbitt (1936-62), 103.
be the most commonly given, as seen in sources such as the Dendera
Temple inscriptions789 or the Jumilhac Papyrus.790
A list in the temple of Denderah gives the parts together with
the nomes to which they were distributed, and agrees with Plutarch
in numbering them as fourteen.
Dr. John G. Griffiths, Plutarchs de Iside et Osiride 791
During the festival of Choiak such a dramatic performance
took place. It is described, not in its entire ritual context, but in
certain directions for the moulding of an image of Osiris,
reproduced on the walls of an Osiris chapel in Dendera. The
image, which is called Sokaris (in Dendera rituals this god is often
identified or intermingled with Osiris) is made of various
substances and moulded into a form. The various ingredients have
to be carefully measured in fourteen parts of the divine body:

head feet arm heart breast thigh [eye?] hand

finger phallus vertebrae ears neck shinbones

The preparation of the image of Sokaris was thus a ritual
reenactment of the gathering of the limbs of Osiris.
Dr. J. Podemann Srensen, in Rethinking Religion: Studies in
the Hellenistic Process 792
The 14 pieces of the body of Osiris sound like the 14 days of
the waning, or dying moon, and on the main ceiling of the
Dendera temple are inscriptions and pictorial reliefs that leave no

mile Chassinat, Le Mystre dOsiris au mois de Khoiak (Cairo: French
Institute for Oriental Archaeology, 1966-68), 493, col. 55-56.
Jacques Vandier, Le Papyrus Jumilhac (Paris: Centre National de la
Recherche Scientifique, 1961) 136-37.
John G. Griffiths, Plutarchs de Iside et Osiride: Edited with an Introduction,
Translation and Commentary (Cambridge: University of Wales Press, 1970),
J. Podemann Srensen, Attis or Osiris? Firmicus Maternus, De errore 22, in
Rethinking Religion: Studies in the Hellenistic Process, ed. J.P. Srensen
(Copenhagen: Museum Tusculanum Press, 1989), 83-84.
doubt. In one panel,793 an eye, installed in a disk, is transported in
a boat. The eye, we know, was a symbol of the sun or moon.
Thoth, the ibis-headed scribe god of wisdom and knowledge, pilots
the barge. Thoth was closely associated with the moon and counted
the days and seasons. The text for this panel refers to the period
after full moon, and 14 gods accompany the eye in the disk. Next
to the portrayal of the waning moon, another carved panel794
represents the 14 days of the waxing moon. A staircase with 14
steps, a god on each, leads up to the same eye and disk, and
hieroglyphics verify the gods association with days of the growing
moon. Osiris, it is written, is luminous, as the god of the moon.
Finally, a third, adjacent panel795 shows Osiris in a boat with lsis
and her sister Nephthys. Goddesses of the four cardinal directions
support the sign of heaven, on which the boat floats, and
the inscription says Osiris is the moon.
Dr. Edwin C. Krupp, Echoes of the Ancient Skies: The
Astronomy of Lost Civilizations 796
Dr. Mark J. Smith explains it all quite nicely:
The full moon is connected with the body of Osiris, which was
dismembered into fourteen parts by Seth and subsequently made
whole again. Osiris may be said to enter the sound eye in two
distinct but related senses. According to the Egyptian view, on each
of the fourteen successive days during the period of the moons
waxing, a different divinity was thought to merge with that celestial
body and restore one of its missing parts. 797 These divinities
constitute the Greater and Lesser Enneads which are said to have
been created and equipped by Isis for the benefit of the sound eye
in the passage from P. BM 10208 cited three paragraphs above.
The parts or components which they supply are called dbH.w, a
term used indifferently of the constituent elements of the moon
and those of the body of Osiris. The work of these deities is
completed by Thoth on the fifteenth day of the lunar month. 798 At
this time, restored to a state of wholeness through their actions,
Osiris may be said to enter the sound eye.

Fig. 58.
Fig. 59.
Fig. 60.
Edwin C. Krupp, Echoes of the Ancient Skies: The Astronomy of Lost
Civilizations (Mineola: Dover Publications, Inc., 1983-2003), 18-19.
Fig. 61-62.
In astronomical terms, full moon day is when the sun and the
moon are in opposition. The Egyptians referred to this as the
union of the two bulls (snsn kA.wy). They believed that, on the
day in question, the rays of the two celestial bodies mingled
together. More specifically, the greater light of the sun was thought
to enter and illuminate the moon. Thus, texts speak of the latter as
receiving (Ssp) the former or being supplied with (aprm) its rays.
The moon is said to be illuminated (Ssp.ti) by the sun, or the rays
of the latter to pervade (Abx) the former.799

Fig. 58: The far north panel of one of the registers on the ceiling of the Temple of
Hathor at Dendera illustrates the 14 days of the waning moon as the 14 seated figures
that accompany the celestial eye in the lunar disk.800

Smith (2002), 122-23.
Krupp (1983-2003), 19.
Fig. 59: On the same register that portrays the waning moon, the middle panel
represents the 14 days of the waxing moon as 14 gods, each positioned upon a stairway
that ascends to the disk of the moon. 801

Fig. 60: Osiris is identified unambiguously with the moon in the third and southernmost
panel from the ceiling of the main hall at Dendera. He is joined in a celestial boat by the
goddesses Isis and Nephthys, and the boat is sailing upon a symbol for the sky, itself
supported by four goddesses. The accompanying texts say that Osiris has stepped into the
full moon and that he is the moon.802

Ibid. 20. Cf. Fig. 57, Plutarchs Moralia 368A.
Fig. 61: From the Temple of Khnum at Esna, a group of 14 gods are accompanied by 14
circles which no doubt represent the aforementioned 14 pieces of the moon and body of

Fig. 62: Also from the Esna Temple of Khnum, the scene directly to the right of Fig. 61
shows the moon fully reconstructed and merging with the sun disk, inside of which
stands the sun god in the form of Re-Khnum, thus a version of the solar-Osirian unity.

Dr. Smith continues:

This belief is given visual expression in Egyptian paintings and
reliefs which show the disk of the full moon with the right, or solar
eye, representing the suns light, inside it. In the Later Period,
Osiris was frequently identified with the sun as well as with the
moon. There is a marked emphasis upon this solar aspect in texts
and representations concerned with his entry into the sound eye
when the moon is full. It is as a solar deity, therefore, as well as in
his capacity as a resurrected god, that Osiris can be said to enter the
eye on the fifteenth day of the lunar month.
As Gutbub had noted, the effect of the entrance of a divinity
into a celestial body is to enhance its light. Accordingly, other
deities apart from Osiris can be said to enter or unite with the
moon if they perform such a function for it. Thus, the divinities
who progressively restore that celestial body to fullness during the
period of its waxing are described in some sources as entering it
(ao). Thoth, who completes their work, can be said to enter the
sound eye (ao r tA wDy) and become one with the moon. The same
action can be predicated of sacred animals. Finally, the sun god

himself, for reasons explained in the preceding paragraph, can be
said to enter and become one with the full moon. 803 In a text from
the temple of Edfu describing the phases of the moon, for instance,
it is said with respect to Horus-Re: imA=f iaH m snsn kA.wy, He
merges with the lunar disk at the union of the two bulls (= full
moon day). The god who enters the sound eye/full moon
possesses all the powers and attributes of a lunar deity.804
So in merging with these celestial bodies, the gods perpetually
reenact stories such as the passion of Osiris, on the stage of the heavens,
forever perennially retelling the gospel to their audience below.
Conspicuously, some of the lunar aspects in this story also show up in
some heathen myths as well, such as certain gods/demigods whose
passion allegedly also culminated on the fourteenth day of their lunar
month. Regardless of that, the broken body of Osiris contains other
symbolism as well, beyond just the celestial associations.
When the pieces of his body were scattered by Seth, each piece was
hidden in a different territory or sepat of the land of Kemet, or as they
are known today- the nomes of ancient Egypt. As Isis & her crew
discovered each piece, she had a false tomb set up in that nome where it
was found so that the true and final burial place would be kept a secret
from Seth and prevent him from desecrating the corpse again. Because of
this, there developed a close association between the nomes of Egypt and
the pieces of the body of Osiris. While differing traditions vary in the
exact number of nomes involved, the tale of his dismemberment and
reconstitution also came to be thought of as analogous to the division and
unification of the various nomes into one united kingdom of ancient
When Osiris was later dismembered, his limbs were
distributed among the members of Typhons gang who scattered
them throughout the 14 or 16 nomes of Egypt.
Dr. Russell E. Gmirkin, Berossus and Genesis, Manetho and
Exodus: Hellenistic Histories and the Date of the Pentateuch 805

Fig. 62.
Ibid. 123-24.
Russell E. Gmirkin, Berossus and Genesis, Manetho and Exodus: Hellenistic
Histories and the Date of the Pentateuch (New York: T & T Clark International,
2006), 202. (Emph. added.)
The body of Osiris was divided into fourteen parts; and a list
in the temple of Dendea confirms that the number of parts and the
nomes in which they lay was fourteen.
Dr. Anne Burton, Diodorus Siculus, Book 1: A Commentary 806
Ptolemaic temples provide texts mentioning fourteen, sixteen
and forty-two parts the latter enabling a part of the gods body to
rest in every nome or administrative district of Egypt. Sites claiming
pieces of Osiris include:
Sebennytos upper and lower leg
Herakleopolis thigh, head, two sides
and two legs
Athribis heart
Abydos head
Edfu leg
Biga Island left leg
Dr. George Hart, The Routledge Dictionary of Egyptian Gods
and Goddesses 807
They interpret the body parts as representations of the nomes
or nome capitals, so that the ritual restoration of Osiris physical
and spiritual integrity also symbolizes the reunification of the entire
land. The Egyptians equated the dismembered body of Osiris
with the multiplicity of the nomes, in order to celebrate the
wholeness and integrity of the land in a ritual of reconstitution. The
motive was concern for the continuing existence of Egyptian
civilization in the face of a crisis that was interpreted and ritually
enacted as a disintegrating force.
Dr. Jan Assmann, The Mind of Egypt: History and Meaning in
the Time of the Pharaohs 808
The offering is subjected to a double sacramental explanation.
One explanation refers the offering to the specific limb of Osiris
body that is brought in it as a contribution by the respective nome
to the restoration of the gods body. On the second level, the limb
is explained as the nome and its capital, with the result that the
body of Osiris, restored and brought back to life, represents the
entirety of the land of Egypt. This point is expressed clearly in the
speeches of the king, who accompanies this procession:

Burton (1972), 89. (Emph. added.)
Hart (1986-2005), 124. (Emph. added.)
Assmann (1996-2002), 410-11.
I bring you the cities and nomes as your limbs.
The gods are assigned to your body as your mystery.
The divine limbs are the nome gods in their true form.
I bring you the company of the gods of Upper Egypt in their
Your divine limbs are gathered in their place.
I bring you the capitals of the nomes: they are your limbs,
they are your ka, which is with you.
I bring your name, your ba, your shadow, your form (oj=k),
your image, and the cities of your nomes.
I bring you the chief gods of Lower Egypt, united together.
All the limbs of your body, they are united.
Dr. Jan Assmann, Death and Salvation in Ancient Egypt 809
So in a metaphorical and spiritual sense, the body of Lord Osiris is
his Kingdom, and the limbs or members that compose that body are the
members of his kingdom- the chosen people of the holy land of Kemet.
Therefore, much like how we are all members composing the body of
God the Father (see pp.96-102), so also, as concerns Lord Osiris, the
chosen people are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.
They are the body of Osiris, and members in particular. They being
many, are one body in Osiris, and every one members one of another.
And although Seth said I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep of the
flock shall be scattered abroad, God said I have gathered thy
children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her
wings! Even as this broken body was scattered over the hills, and was
gathered together and became one, so let thy congregation be gathered
together from the ends of the earth into thy kingdom. For as the body
is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body,
being many, are one body: so also is Osiris, and his kingdom.
God hath tempered the body together, having given more abundant
honor to that part which lacked, that there should be no schism in the
body; but that the members should have the same care one for another.
For Osiris did pray save all my members (limbs), which have been
scattered abroad in all the rulers, ministers, and workmen of this on,
and gather them all together and receive them into the Light. I have
recognized myself and gathered myself together from all sides. I have

Assmann (2001-05), 364.
gathered together my limbs that were scattered abroad, and I know thee
who thou art. Thus the body of Osiris is not only analogous to the
moon, but also to the land of Egypt as well. Or as Dr. Assmann put it,
this aspect of Osiris is like the Pauline concept of the church as the body
of 810 The Good Shepherd, of whom it is said the Lamb of God is
dismembered and distributed, he that is dismembered yet not divided,
who is always eaten yet never consumed, but sanctifies those who

This is My Blood

As covered earlier, upon drowning in the Nile waters, Osiris dead

body began to decompose. As is well known, when as a corpse putrefies,
it begins to leaks out bodily fluids such as pus, and of course, blood.
Being a god, Osiriss body had divine properties. Therefore when his
bloody emissions leaked into the Nile, those fluids caused the waters of
the Nile to rise significantly. They rose so much, in fact, that the Nile
began to flood the arable lands flanking its banks. This was the inaugural
Nile inundation season.
You have your water, you have your flood, the fluid which
issued from the god, the exudation which issued from Osiris.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 436 788 811
O King, your cool water is the great flood which issued from
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 460 868 812
Your water is yours, your flood is yours, your efflux which
issued from Osiris is yours.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 536 1291 813
Your water is yours, your flood is yours, your efflux which
issued from the putrefaction of Osiris is yours.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 553 1360 814

Assmann (2001-05), 361.
Faulkner (1969), 143.
Ibid. 153.
Ibid. 205.
When the season of Inundation comes, provide the efflux
which issued from Osiris
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 667A 1944 815
You have your water, you have your flood, you have your
efflux which issued from Osiris.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 676 2007 816
The king possesses his bodily fluids
You have your water, you have your efflux, you have your
flood which issued from Osiris.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 679 2031-32 817
I have quenched my thirst with the efflux of my father Osiris.
O Isis, [I have quenched] my thirst with the high Nile, with the
flood of Osiris.
Coffin Texts, Spell 362 V, 22 818
Those waters in which it is dragged are the final(?) putrefaction
from under the ribs of my father Osiris.
Coffin Texts, Spell 479 VI, 38 819
The waters have overflowed for him the efflux of Osiris
flooded out when he was buried, and N is one who turned aside
toward it for life, welfare and health.
Coffin Texts, Spell 680 VI, 306 820
You have your water, you have your cold water, the efflux
which issued from the god, the putrescence which issued from
Coffin Texts, Spell 833 VII, 34 821
The river is (as) filled (with) thickets as (is) the flood with the
efflux that came forth from Osiris. May I gain access to water, may

Ibid. 213.
Ibid. 281.
Ibid. 289.
Ibid. 292.
Faulkner (1977), 5.
Ibid. 121.
Ibid. 245.
Faulkner (1978), 22.
I have abundance of water, like this god who is in the mound of
Book of the Dead, Spell 149 n S 1 822
Hi, Osiris. Thou comest as the inundation that waters; thou
providest for the fields.
Book of the Dead, Spell 162 variant S 2 823
Raise thyself, Inundation, Osiris who came forth at the
beginning and fills the earth with his efflux. Raise thyself, thou
who hast dawned as the inundation Raise thyself, (Inundation),
Great Green (Sea).
Book of the Dead, Spell Pleyte 168 S 34, 38, 42 824
O Osiris N.,
take this libation
that comes from Elephantine,
this discharge that comes from Osiris,
which Sothis (the goddess of the new year) brings with her own
as she associates Khnum with you.
A great Nile inundation has come to you,
its arms filled with rejuvenated water,
to bring you gifts
of all fresh things at their time,
with no delay.
Libation Situla of High Priest Wsjr-wr 825
The efflux of the body of Osiris, in its turn, was nothing less
than the inundating Nile.
Dr. Harco Willems, The Coffin of Heqata 826
His body was the land of Egypt, which was divided into
provinces, each containing a relic of his limbs. He was also present
in the waters of the Nile, which flooded and gave life each year to
the earth of the Nile valley.

T.G. Allen (1974), 146.
Ibid. 158.
Ibid. 219.
Assmann (2001-05), 359-60.
Harco Willems, The Coffin of Heqata (Cairo JdE 36418): A Case Study of
Egyptian Funerary Culture of the Early Middle Kingdom (Leuven: Peeters
Publishers, 1996), 138.
Dr. John D. Ray, Reflections of Osiris 827
The rotting corpse of Osiris is often said to have beneficial
resultsthe rDw-fluids are even the source of the life-giving
inundation waters. These floodwaters are not only the place in
which the sun is born each day, but may also be an allusion to the
putrefaction of Osiris as the source of the inundation. The mummy
not only creates the space for the floodwaters, but also could be the
source of the precious liquid.
Dr. Colleen Manassa, The Late Egyptian Underworld 828
According to the myth, the Nile inundation had its origin in
the exudations of the corpse of Osiris. The inundation is called
rejuvenated water, and the passage ends by making this
expression a name of the deceased himself, for he is indeed Osiris,
from whose corpse the inundation flowed. The idea of a cycle is
crucial to this association of ideas. With the water, life-fluid is
returned to the deceased, life-fluid that has flowed out of him, out
of Osiris. The water is a discharge that is returned in the offering.
The concept of rejuvenation results from this idea of a cycle.
Egypt symbolized the body of Osiris. When the reuniting and
revivification of Osiris were celebrated during the annual Osiris
mysteries, Egyptians were reassured of the unity of the land. In this
mythic concept, all Egypt constituted the body from which the Nile
inundation gushed forth like a bodily humor that brought life. We
thus see that a correspondence of microcosm and macrocosm
underlay the designation of water as the discharge of Osiris. The
world--or Egypt, at least--was conceived of as a body, and the water
of the Nile as an elixir of life that gushed forth from it. In this
system of assigning body parts to parts of the land, the wounded leg
belonged to elephantine. This was the place where the life juices
flowed out of Osiris and flooded Egypt, giving rise to all the means
of life. When it was offered to him in the cult, the water of the
inundation, which had flowed out of the body of the slain god,
made it possible to restore life to him, as well as to all the dead,
who were equated with him.
Dr. Jan Assmann, Death and Salvation in Ancient Egypt 829
As for the next text, although it does not concern the inundation, it
still demonstrates that the blood and pus of Osiris were understood to
give rise to bodies of water.

Ray (2002), 156.
Manassa (2007), 66, 373.
Assmann (2001-05), 358, 361.
Then Suty came, his head bowed, forehead touching the earth,
(for) he saw what [...] had done against him [... the blood] that
dripped from his nose. Then Osiris fertilized (the earth with) the
blood that came forth in Heracleopolis.
[...] to see Osiris, he found him seated in his house, his head
swollen, because of the burning (of) [...Then said Osiris]:
Put pressure on these swellings, forcing blood and putrid pus out of
them in the marshland.
Book of the Dead, Spell 175 c S 1-2 830
Blood and pus together appear in a positive context in Book of
the Dead Chapter 175, which describes the atef-crown injuring the
head of Osiris; Re takes the blood and pus from this injury to
create the waters of the Faiyum.
Dr. Colleen Manassa, The Late Egyptian Underworld 831
The newfound excess of water provided abundant irrigation never
before seen in Egypt. And since pus & blood contain organic minerals,
the divine emissions provided nourishing fertilization as well. All of this
resulted in a surplus of new botanical growth throughout the land, the
most desired of which was arguably that of the grapevine. The reason for
that is obvious- wine. As such, Osiris was credited as being responsible
for this bounty, and as being the source of wine.
Osiris appears The Lord of wine in flood, his seasons have
recognized him, his times have remembered him, and the King is
recognized by his seasons with him, his times with him have
remembered him.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 577 1520, 24 832
Behold, Osiris has come as Orion, Lord of Wine in the WAg-
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 442 820 833
Wine was often an important item in funerary and temple
cults. From as early as the Old Kingdom, wine was regularly
mentioned in offering lists as part of the funerary establishment. In
temple rituals, wine was also often offered to various deities. In the

T.G. Allen (1974), 184-85.
Manassa (2007), 47 n.244.
Faulkner (1969), 232-33. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 147. (Emph. added.)
pyramid temple of Fifth Dynasty king Sahura, for example, the king
was shown offering wine to the goddess Sakhmet. Besides its
general significance as an item that pleased the deities, the offering
of wine took on certain specific religious and mythological
associations. Already in the Pyramid Texts, Osiris was mentioned
as the Lord of Wine in the Wag Festival (PT Spell 442: 820a).
The Wag Festival was celebrated at the beginning of the
inundation, on the 17th, 18th, or 19th of Thoth, the first month of
inundation. The festival itself was a funerary feast that was probably
aimed at the celebration of the resurrection of life that the
inundation brought. Since Osiris epitomized resurrection, there
may be a certain connection between Osiris as the god of
vegetation and rejuvenation and the symbolic coming to life of the
grapevine. The fact that wine production depended upon the
coming of the inundation might therefore have fostered the
meaning of wine as a symbol of life and rejuvenation. A text in the
Ptolemaic temple of Edfu contains the following sentence: The
vineyard flourishes in Edfu, the inundation rejoices at what is in it.
It bears fruit with more grapes than [the sand of] the riverbanks.
They [the grapes] are made into wine for your storage . . . .
(Chassinat and Rochemonteix: Edfou VII: 278). Thus the
relationship between the inundation and the production of wine is
clearly stated.
Dr. Mu-chou Poo, in UCLA Encyclopedia of Egyptology 834
Also, when the bloody fluids of Osiris corpse leaked into the Nile,
they changed the color of the water into a shade of red, like that of wine.
The Lord left a memorial of this life-giving event by causing the annual
inundation thereafter to also turn the Nile waters red every year. Much
like how Osiris bloody fluids saturated the water with nourishing
minerals, the subsequent inundations likewise cause a surplus of minerals
to permeate the Nile as mountain streams located further south wash
sediment downstream. The iron-rich soil from which the sediment came
imbues the Nile with a reddish hue, like blood, and of course, like wine.
This led to the belief that the blood of Osiris turned water into wine.
Hence the deceased, identified with Osiris, says in Pyramid Text
Utterance 210 130:
You gods, my water is wine like that of Re.835

Mu-chou Poo, Liquids in Temple Ritual, in UCLA Encyclopedia of
Egyptology, ed. W. Wendrich (Los Angeles: 2010), 1-2.
This is echoed in the Book of the Dead:
N.s flood is in the Field of Offerings. His gifts are among
(you, O) gods; N.s water is wine like Re(s). Triumphant is
Osiris N.
Book of the Dead, Spell 178 f S 2 836
Not only the Nile, but every form of moisture they call simply
the effusion of Osiris; and in their holy rites the water jar in honour
of the god heads the procession. They regard the Nile as the
effusion of Osiris
Waters that flow through a mountainous and stony country are
clearer than those of the marshes and plains, since they do not
carry off much earth. The Nile, encompassed by soft terrain, or
rather interspersed through it as blood is through flesh, has the
benefit of its sweetness, and is filled with fluids that are heavy and
nourishing; but in its flow it is impure and turbid. If it is roiled, this
is even more the case, for motion mixes mud and liquid, but when
the river is quiet the mud sinks and disappears, because of its
weight. This is why they draw water at night, but also in order to
anticipate the sun, which by continually evaporating the finest and
lightest element in the liquid, causes deterioration.
Plutarch, Moralia 365B, 366A, 725 837
Even the heathen have acknowledged the reality of this phenomenon.
The inhabitants of Egypt worship water, supplicate water,
venerate water with an everlasting series of superstitious vows.
Osiris is worshipped and Typhon is shunned. Vain is your
supposition that this water which you worship is at times of benefit
to you. Quite another thing is the water by which human beings are
renewed and reborn. This water which you worship every year
why, a different power dries it up by overheating the channels of its
veins; or at any rate the calamitous blood of your king [Osiris]
befouls it.
Firmicus Maternus, The Error of the Pagan Religions 2.1-5 838

Faulkner (1969), 39. (Emph. added.)
T.G. Allen (1974), 187. (Emph. added.)
Plutarch, in Babbitt (1936-62), 87, 93. (Emph. added.)
Plutarch, Moralia, in Plutarchs Moralia: Volume IX, trans. P.A. Clement and
H.B. Hoffleit (London: William Heinemann Ltd., and Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard
University Press, 1969), 157. (Emph. added.)
When the water was made wine, was performed on about the
same eleventh day thirty years later. And even to this day this
happens in many places as a testimony to unbelievers because of
the miracle which was wrought at that time, as streams and rivers in
many localities testify by being changed to wine. The stream at
Cibyre, the chief city of Caria [bears witness] at the same time of
day at which the servants drew the water And the stream at
Gerasa in Arabia testifies in the same way. I have drunk from the
one at Cibyre myself, and my brethren have drunk from the
stream in the martyrium at Gerasa. And in Egypt too many give
this testimony of the Nile. Thus in Egypt itself, and in many
countries, everyone draws water on the eleventh of the Egyptian
month Tybi, and stores it up.
Epiphanius of Salamis, Panarion 51, 29.7-30.3 839
And academia affirms it all as well, of course.
The inundation of the Nile, which made the Nile so crucial to
the survival of Egypt, is caused by rains which fall in Central Africa
and by the melting snow and the rainfall from the Ethiopian
highlands. By the end of May, the river Nile was at its lowest level
in Egypt. During the month of June the Nile, between the first
cataracts and Heliopolis, began to rise and some greenish water
appeared at this time. During later July and August the river rose
rapidly and its waters assumed a reddish, muddy color, which was
due to the presence of red earth brought into the Nile by two
rivers, the Blue Nile and the Atbara River.
Dr. Rivka Ulmer, Egyptian Cultural Icons in Midrash 840
Wine was a prestigious drink; it was used in religious rituals as
an offering to Egyptian deities, and scenes of wine-offerings are
ubiquitous on temple walls of all periods. In the Pyramid Texts,
Osiris was mentioned as the Lord of Wine, presumably from his
relationship with the annual inundation of the Nile, the seasonal
revival of vegetation in general, and the vine in particular . Many
Greco-Roman authors noted that the color of the Nile was red
during the inundation, and a story mentioned that the Nile water

Firmicus Maternus, The Error of the Pagan Religions, trans. C.A. Forbes (New
York: Newman Press, 1970) 44-45, 146 n.30. (Emph. added.)
Epiphanius of Salamis, Panarion, in The Panarion of Epiphanius of Salamis,
Books II and III. De Fide, trans. F. Williams (Leiden: Koninklijke Brill NV, 1994-
2013), 62. (Emph. added.)
Ulmer (2009), 52. (Emph. added.)
once turned into winemost likely a mythological interpretation of
a natural phenomenon caused by the iron-rich red alluvium washed
into the Nile from the Atbara branch during the flood season.
Wine in daily life was an enjoyable drink, whereas in myth and
theology it was symbolic of blood and the power of rejuvenation .
Dr. Mu-chou Poo, in The Oxford Encyclopedia of Ancient
Egypt: Volume 3 841
As Greek and Roman authors noted, the Nile water turned
red during the inundation, which suggests the color of wine. The
color of wine, when it was red, and even disregarding its association
with the mythological story, already suggested an association with
blood and the life-giving force of nature. As this association was not
limited to ancient Egyptian culture, it is all the more possible to
believe that the symbolic association of wine and blood did exist in
Dr. Mu-chou Poo, in UCLA Encyclopedia of Egyptology 842
The grape harvest started just before the summer flooding
season (Akhet) which occurred in the middle of July. The
reappearance of the star Sothis in the sky (about 18 th of July)
announced that soon the Nile flooding, which would give great
fertility to the land was going to arrive. For this reason, ancient
Egyptians related the grape harvest and the new seasons
winemaking with the Nile flooding. At these times the Nile water
acquired a reddish colour due to the ferrous alluvium of the Blue
Nile and the Atbara rivers coming from the Ethiopian land. The
Nile flood was related to the resurrection of the god Osiris who,
according to mythology was found dead in the Nile after being
killed by his brother Seth. The blood of Osiris was related with the
new seasons wine. Wine symbolism is first documented in the
Pyramid Texts of the Fifth Dynasty. Osiris was the first god who
returned to life and like him Egyptians had to be resurrected after
death in order to progress to the afterlife. As can be seen in the
Theban tomb of Sennefer, the tomb ceiling has been decorated
with a painted vine symbolizing the rebirth of the dead. The grapes
and the wine were considered the symbol of resurrection.
Dr. Maria R. Guasch et al., in Proceedings of the Ninth
International Congress of Egyptologists: Volume 1 843

Mu-chou Poo, Wine, in The Oxford Encyclopedia of Ancient Egypt: Volume
3, ed. D.B. Redford (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2001), 503. (Emph.
Poo (2010), 2. (Emph. added.)
When the inundation arrives the water becomes reddish and
assails these dykes like a young man in love, as the texts put it. At
particular spots all along the river, cuttings are made to allow the
silt-charged water to spread over the plain. Plutarch remarked that
the waters of the flood mingle with the soil like blood with flesh.
Like a living body, the Nile is bled throughout its length, a kind of
pelican that pierces its own flanks to feed its young.
Dr. Jean L. Krisel, The Nile and Its Masters: Past, Present,
Future 844
The annual inundation amazed the Egyptians, who had no
explanation for the rivers sudden great swelling, nor the change in
its color from red to green. At first the silt suspended in the water
caused the Nile to look red, and the slow moving vegetation
floating on top made it look green.
Patricia Remler, Egyptian Mythology: A to Z 845
The water of the inundation was also association with red wine.
Dr. Lszl Trk, Between Two Worlds 846
It is the dismemberment of the body of Osiris and its
scattering all over Egypt that conveys associations with ritual
fertilizing of the land. Blood was transubstantiated into water and
water enveloped the earth to penetrate it and create new life. The
red hue of the river, brought on by oxide sediments during the
inundation, to this day is compared with blood. Was this the blood
of Osiris? Life was reborn from the saturated, black earth. Osiris
came back, his flesh as green as the plants in the valley. The
mystery of creation was enacted every year since the beginning of
time. This was the form of Him whom one may not name, Osiris
of the Mysteries, who springs from the returning waters.
Dr. Bojana Mojsov, Osiris: Death and Afterlife of a God 847

Maria R. Guasch et al., Scientific Research on Archaeological Residues from
Ancient Egyptian Wines, in Orientalia Lovaniensia Analecta: Proceedings of the
Ninth International Congress of Egyptologists: Volume 1, eds. J.C. Goyon, C.
Cardin (Leuven: Peeters Publishers, 2007), 851-52. (Emph. added.)
Jean L. Krisel, The Nile and Its Masters: Past, Present, Future, trans. P.
Cockle (Rotterdam: A.A. Balkema Publishers, 1999-2001), 38. (Emph. added.)
Remler (2000-10), viii.
Lszl Trk, Between Two Worlds: The Frontier Region between Ancient
Nubia and Egypt 3700 BC 500 AD (Leiden: Koninklijke Brill NV, 2009), 4.
Mojsov (2005), 7-8.
Wine is called the blood of Osiris, a process of
Dr. John G. Griffiths, Apuleius of Madauron: The Isis-Book 848
This natural metaphor of sediment runoff giving water a blood red
color is not unique to just the Nile.
A certain Byblian who seemed to be telling the truth gave
another explanation. His account was this: The river Adonis,
stranger, passes through Lebanon, and Lebanon has very yellow
soil. Strong winds which arise on those days carry the earth, which
is red in the highest degree, into the river, and it is the earth that
makes it bloody. So the reason for the phenomenon is not the
blood, as they say, but the terrain. So said the man of Byblos; but
even if what he said was right, the winds timing seemed to me to be
miraculous indeed.
Lucian of Samosata, On the Syrian Goddess 8 849
Then did Athene, the clear-eyed, summon up for them a
favouring breeze, a brisk following West Wind which thrummed
across the wine-dark sea.
Homer, The Odyssey 2.461-62 850
In summary, it was believed that the blood of Osiris turned water
into wine, and that, as the source of water for the grapevine, ultimately
his blood literally became wine as well. Thus wine became a symbol for
his blood. And not only was his bloody inundation considered the source
for the wine of grapes, but also for the wine made from Egypts other
staple crop, as Herodotus put it- the wine of grain, i.e. beer.
These Egyptians eat bread made from spelt, and they call
these loaves kyllestis. The wine they drink is made from barley.
Herodotus, Histories 2.77.4 851
Their beer is wine.
Book of Gates, 7th Hour, Scene 43 (16th-11th cen. BCE) 852

Griffiths (1975), 316-17.
Lucian of Samosata, On the Syrian Goddess, in Lucian: On the Syrian
Goddess, trans. J.L. Lightfoot (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003), 251-53.
Homer, in Lawrence (1932-91), 26. (Emph. added.)
Strassler (2009), 150, n.2.77.4b.
O Flood, I have come to you that you may give me bread
when I am hungry and give me beer when I am thirsty.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 494 1063 853
You have your water, you have your inundation, you have your
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 424 774 854
O Osiris the King, take the ferment(?) which issued from you
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 49 37 855
Your beer has flooded in, even the efflux of which came out of
Coffin Texts, Spell 68 I, 291 856
At times this grain and beer was said to be red in color, just like
wine, also likely signifying the color of the very blood from which it was
May you swallow beer of red emmer at the pure place.
Coffin Texts, Spell 225 III, 236 857
My beer is of red barley.
Book of the Dead, Spell 52 b S 2 858
[I] sip beer [of] red [wheat] of the Inundation in the pure
Book of the Dead, Spell 68 S 4 859
The color of the Nile during inundation, furthermore, suggests
the color of wine, or the red-colored beer.
Dr. Muchou Poo, Wine and Wine Offering in the Religions
of Ancient Egypt 860

Erik Hornung and Theodor Abt, The Egyptian Book of Gates (Zurich: Living
Human Heritage Publications, 2014), 140.
Faulkner (1969), 176. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 141. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 10. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1973), 65.
Ibid. 117. (Emph. added.)
T.G. Allen (1974), 52. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 62. (Emph. added.)
The yearly celebration at Dendera coincided with the
inundation of the Nile during the summer, when reddish, iron-rich
soils were washed down from the Atbara River in the Sudan, giving
the waters the appearance of red beer. Papyri and inscriptions
refer to many different kinds of ancient Egyptian beer, including
dark beer, sweet beer, iron beer (perhaps distinctively colored
Dr. Patrick E. McGovern, Uncorking the Past: The Quest for
Wine, Beer, and Other Alcoholic Beverages 861
Egyptian texts speak of sweet beer, red beerthe most
commonand black beer, which must have been the most
Dr. Edda Bresciani, in Food: A Culinary History from
Antiquity to the Present
Both barley and wheat beers were brewed in this manner,
sometimes with such additives as date juice for a sweetener or red
dye for special holidays.
Dr. Bob Brier and Dr. A. Hoyt Hobbs, Daily Life of the
Ancient Egyptians 863

Fig. 63: Wine made from grapes watered by the inundating blood of Osiris.

Muchou Poo, Wine and Wine Offering in the Religions of Ancient Egypt
(London: Kegan Paul International, 1995-2009), 157. (Emph. added.)
Patrick E. McGovern, Uncorking the Past: The Quest for Wine, Beer, and
Other Alcoholic Beverages (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2009), 246.
(Emph. added.)
Edda Bresciani, Food Culture in Ancient Egypt, in Food: A Culinary History
from Antiquity to the Present, eds. J.L. Flandrin, M. Montanari, and A.
Sonnenfeld, trans. C. Botsford et al. (New York: Columbia University Press,
1996-99), 40. (Emph. added.)
Brier and Hobbs (2008), 112. (Emph. added.)
Fig. 64

This is My Body Which is Given for You

The growth of grain and other vegetation which resulted from the
death of Osiris not only came about through the inundation caused by his
bloody fluids, but grain also came directly from his person. Time and
time again ancient Egyptian scriptures and other sources declare that ears
of grain were known to have sprung forth and grown directly from the
dead body of Osiris himself.
May you cause me to eat of the grain which grew there, like
Osiris on the Great Flood.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 493 1059 864
I am the living one who is on his neck and my throat is made
to flourish, (even I) whom Atum made into the Grain-god when he
caused me to go down into this land, to the Island of Fire, when I
became Osiris the son of Geb.
Coffin Texts, Spell 80 II, 40-41 865
It is this god of smoked(?) grain who lives after his death.

Faulkner (1969), 175.
Faulkner (1973), 85. (Emph. added.)
Coffin Texts, Spell 99 II, 95 866
of life which went forth from Osiris to grow on the ribs of Osiris.
Coffin Texts, Spell 269 IV, 6 867
BECOMING NEPER [the grain] I live and I die, I am
Osiris I live and I die, for I am emmer.
Coffin Texts, Spell 330 IV, 168-69 868
Osiris pre-eminent in goodly grain, Osiris the lord of grain.
Book of the Dead, Spell 142 S 2 869
Brilliance for your barley when grain grows, Osiris emerges.
Book of Gates, 7th Hour, Scene 46 (16th-11th cen. BCE) 870

Osiris is being buried at the time when the grain is sown and
covered in the earth and that he comes to life and reappears when
plants begin to sprout.
Plutarch, Moralia 377B871
In a scene from a Third Intermediate Period coffin, the light
of the disk causes grain to spring forth from the mummy of Osiris.
Dr. Colleen Manassa, The Late Egyptian Underworld 872
Thriving are the fields of the Netherworld,
As Re shines over the body of Osiris.
At your rising the plants appear.
These verses are well illustrated on a painted coffin of Dynasty
21 showing ears of grain ripening out of Osiriss body873 below a
solar disk embraced by a pair of arms.
Dr. Erik Hornung, The Valley of the Kings: Horizon of Eternity 874

Ibid. 97.
Ibid. 205. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 254, n.1. (Emph. added.)
T.G. Allen (1974), 119. (Emph. added.)
Hornung and Abt (2014), 258-59.
Plutarch, in Babbitt (1936-62), 153.
Manassa (2007), 416 n.37.
Fig. 67.
Hornung (1982-90), 118. (Emph. added.)
The libation is mentioned in the former as the cause of the
growth of barley and emmer, exactly the types of corn stored in the
granaries on F of A1C, and which, in their turn, can of course be
regarded as a manifestation of Osiris.
The efflux of the body of Osiris, in its turn, was nothing less
than the inundating Nile, on which the growth of barley and emmer
was dependent. As a corollary to providing the deceased with his
efflux, he therefore also received an offering of grain, and this is
rendered by the granaries depicted on F.
This happened when the Nile became lower in February and
March, a natural feature that symbolized the death of Osiris. It is
probably significant that this was also the time when barley and
emmer - the cereals symbolizing Osiris - were harvested. Possibly, a
Ssp.t itrw was also celebrated at other times of the year, such as the
period when the Nile rose again in summer.
Some scholars have argued that the Osirian deceased who
washes the quay is here compared with the Nile. Although this
does not remove all the obstacles to our understanding of this
passage, the succeeding remark that the speaker lives on white
emmer affords some support, for elsewhere on the southern
Egyptian coffins, emmer and barley have turned out to be related
to libation offerings symbolizing the efflux of Osiris body, i.e., the
fertilizing inundation of the Nile.
Dr. Harco Willems, The Coffin of Heqata 875
From at least as early as the Middle Kingdom, the death and
regeneration of Osiris had been specifically linked to the annual
cycle of the sowing and harvesting of food crops. Barley was said to
spring from the ribs of his body, and the donkies who threshed
corn with their hooves and carried grain on their backs were reviled
as creatures of Seth. The use of the wedjat eye measurement for
grain ties in with the idea that crops came from the body of Osiris
after it was regenerated through the presentation of the eye of
Dr. Geraldine Pinch, Egyptian Myth: A Very Short
Introduction 876
In Egypt the dead were purified so that they could enter a new
life in the underworld. The dead Osiris is sprinkled causing blades
of grain to sprout from his body. Like Osiris, to be drowned in the

Willems (1996), 130, 138, 221, 245. (Emph. added.)
Geraldine Pinch, Egyptian Myth: A very Short Introduction (Oxford: Oxford
University Press, 2004), 117. (Emph. added.)
river is to enter into connection with the god and thus to be
Dr. Hannah K. Harrington, Holiness: Rabbinic Judaism and
the Graeco-Roman World 877
In the early dynastic period, Osiris also became identified with
the new grain that rises from the earth, fructified by the Niles
waters. He is pictured lying as a mummy beneath the grain, which
sprouts from his body, while a priest pours water on him. Mats of
earth with sprouting grain were placed in tombs of the dead, thus
making the connection between the grain that rises yearly from the
earth and immortal life that rises in the resurrected Osiris.
In a story found in the theology of Memphis, Osiris falls into
the risen Nile and drowns. The young Horus entreats the
Goddesses Isis and Nephthys to rescue Osiris. They draw him
from the waters and install him in the Great Seat, the temple of
Ptah at Memphis, called the mistress of all life, the Granary of the
God through which the sustenance of the Two Lands is prepared.
Here, Osiris is explicitly identified with the grain drowned in the
waters of the Nile and then risen to new life.
Dr. Rosemary R. Ruether, Goddesses and the Divine Feminine: A
Western Religious History 878
Osiris, as is evident in so many of the mortuary texts, was
manifest in the phenomena of the life of nature. He was seen in the
growing grain and the vegetation of the land; he was seen also in the
waters of the Nile, for it was these waters, the great efflux of Osiris,
which brought fertility to the land and allowed it to produce its
Dr. Vincent A. Tobin, Theological Principles of Egyptian
Religion 879
New life, in the form of a crop of grain, sprouts from the body
of the dead Osiris and completes another cycle in the circuit order.
Osiris embodies the principle of rebirth and resurrection and is
associated with everything that follows the pattern: the sun, the

Hannah K. Harrington, Holiness: Rabbinic Judaism and the Graeco-Roman
World (London: Routledge, 2001), 178. (Emph. added.)
Rosemary R. Ruether, Goddesses and the Divine Feminine: A Western
Religious History (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2005), 63-64. (Emph.
Tobin (1989), 111.
moon, the stars, the river, the plants, and the soul. He is Lord of
Dr. Edwin C. Krupp, Echoes of the Ancient Skies: The
Astronomy of Lost Civilizations 880

Fig. 65: Based on a limestone bas-relief from Karnak, 15th century BCE.

Fig. 66: Grain sprouting from the body of Osiris; from the Jumilhac Papyrus, currently
at the Louvre Museum.

Krupp (1983-2003), 21. (Emph. added.)
Fig. 67: Another scene showing ears of grain growing from the corpse of Osiris; from the
coffin of Nespawershepi, 10th century BCE.

This feature of Osiris body was the inspiration for the ancient
customs known as Osiris beds and corn mummies. These involved
making effigies of Osiris composed of grain. These effigies were
regularly watered (i.e. baptized), eventually causing new ears to sprout
forth from the effigies, just as they sprouted forth from the body of Lord
From the New Kingdom onwards, Osiris beds (wooden
outlines of the god filled with soil) and corn mummies were also
placed in tombs. They were sometimes watered during the funeral
so that the seeds would sprout after the tomb was closed. Such
symbolism helped to incorporate the human dead in a great cycle
of death and regeneration that encompassed all created beings and
things. The human dead were also expected to play an active role
in the maintenance of the cycle initiated by the creator.
Dr. Geraldine Pinch, Egyptian Myth: A very Short
Introduction 881
One of the most interesting magical objects in this room was a
wooden mold in the shape of Osiris. This mold was lined with
linen and filled with rich topsoil deposited by the Nile. Seeds,
mostly for grain, were planted in the topsoil. When they sprouted,
they would be a green, living representation for Osiris, symbolizing
resurrection. Tutankhamen had sought to identify himself with
Osiris in that way and bring about his resurrection.
Dr. Bob Brier, Ancient Egyptian Magic 882

Pinch (2004), 117.
During the Khoiak-festival, a snw-vase was placed under the
Osirian corn-mummy. The mummy was daily sprinkled with water
to make the corn grow. Some of it trickled down through the clay
figure and dripped into the vessel. In a religious sense, this was, of
course, not just water. It was nothing less than the bodily efflux of
Osiris, interpreted as a source of fertility and life.
Dr. Harco Willems, The Coffin of Heqata 883
Further references to Osiriss vegetative power are found in the
Osiris beds of royal and private burials in the Valley of the Kings.
These consisted of a wooden base in the form of the gods
silhouette covered with fertile soil and sown with grain, the green
shoots bringing to life the mythical revival of the lord of the
Beyond, and vicariously that of the deceased himself.
Dr. Erik Hornung, The Valley of the Kings: Horizon of
Eternity 884
Beginning in the late Third Intermediate Period (the second
half of the eighth century B.C.) a specific subcategory of corn
mummies emerged: figures placed in hawk-headed coffins. After
the figure had been formed, a coating of oils, resins, wax, and gum
was applied to the bandages or cover shroud to more closely
simulate a genuine mummy. Representations of and references
to corn mummies have been found on coffins of genuine
mummies, and the process of their manufacture during the Khoiak
festival, as well as their subsequent burial, is described and depicted
on temple walls.
Dr. Regine Schulz, in The Walters Art Museum Journal 885

Brier (1980-2001), 197.
Willems (1996), 119.
Hornung (1982-90), 118.
Regine Schulz, A Corn Mummy Decoded, in The Walters Art Museum
Journal 63 (2005): 5.
Fig. 68: An Osiris bed used for sprouting grain in the form of Osiris; from Thebes, 6 th
century BCE.

Fig. 69: Another example of an Osiris bed; from the tomb of Horemheb, KV57, 13 th
century BCE.

Fig. 70: An Osiris bed after sprouting, illustrating how the flesh of Osiris became grain;
from the tomb of Maiherpri, KV36, 14th century BCE.

Fig. 71: A grain-mummy effigy of Osiris, currently at the National Museum of

Antiquities in Leiden.

Fig. 72

Fig. 73: Another Osirian grain-mummy with sarcophagus (the lid is seen in Fig. 72), from
the Late Period; currently at the Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum in San Jose.

He was Known of Them in Breaking of Bread

So his inundating blood produced the grain which fed all of Egypt,
but also, even part of the very flesh of Osiris himself was transformed
into grain. How did this Osirian grain feed the chosen people of ancient
Kemet? Well, as shown earlier, one medium was beer. The other medium
is known as the most popular dietary staple in the history of human kind-

of life which went forth from Osiris to grow on the ribs of Osiris
and to nourish the plebs, which makes the gods divine and
spiritualizes the spirits[Axw],886 which provisions the owners of
doubles and the owners of property, which makes cakes for the
spirits[Axw], which causes the living to grow, and which makes firm
the bodies of the living.
Coffin Texts, Spell 269 IV, 6-7 887
There it is, right there straight from the holy scriptures- the grain
which grew from the body of Osiris was used to make cakes of bread, i.e.
part of his flesh literally became bread and was eaten. The body of Osiris
was transubstantiated into bread, bread which imparted divine power and
The term corn in Egyptology (as in English biblical usage)
designates grain in general. Botanical analysis of a group of corn
mummies in a Polish collection has identified the grain used as
emmer or barley, which formed the basis of the most important
foods of the Egyptians: bread and beer.
Dr. Regine Schulz, in The Walters Art Museum Journal 888
Barley was said to spring from the ribs of his body ... Since
bread made from corn and beer made from barley were the basic
foodstuffs for all Egyptians, the regeneration of Osiris was
important to the whole nation.
Dr. Geraldine Pinch, Egyptian Myth: A very Short
Introduction 889
Moret discusses the Heliopolitan and Osirian connotations
possible for the term DfAw; DfA and kA.w foodstuffs are said to have
been made by Osiris, and to consist of his body Osiris is called
Df(A) kAw xn.ty psD.t, Provision, Food, Foremost of the Ennead.
Dr. John C. Darnell, The Enigmatic Netherworld Books of the
Solar-Osirian Unity 890

Akhs- see chapter 5 for more details.
Faulkner (1973), 205. (Emph. added.)
Schulz, loc. cit. (Emph. added.)
Pinch, loc. cit.
Darnell (2004), 315. (Emph. added.)
Such being the case, it became customary at certain festivals to bake
loaves of bread in the shape of the body of Osiris, and then divide, or
break, the bread into individual body parts in remembrance of how his
body was broken by Seth.
It so happens that scented loaves of bread accompany the
Sokar figure in the Osirian mysteries described at Dendera. Called
qfnloaves, they are baked in special molds that mark them as
representations of Osiris body parts, and they too are made of
wheat flour (bdt, emmer wheat) mixed with aromatic substances
(listed in columns 47-48).
Dr. Joseph D. Reed, in Transactions of the American
Philological Association 891
1.8. I bring together to you the gods of the North and present
to you all of the parts of your divine body, assembled in their
place (Dendera, translated from Chassinat (1966-68: II, 624)).
1.9. The bread mold... made of wood... The sixteen
members are carved on it, each of them designated by its name ...
his shin-bones [qs.w]... his phallus [D.t], his spinal column [pst]...
his neck [At] (Dendera, translated from Chassinat. (1966-68: II,
365)). This graphic portrayal of the assemblage of parts is repeated
at Dendera with the mold of Sokaris, which has fourteen segments.
Of these one is psd (Chassinat lchine, earlier medical usage back,
another At (Chassinat la nuque, earlier medical usage spine (1966-
68: II, 493-7)).
Dr. Calvin W. Schwabe, Dr. Joyce Adams, and Dr. Carleton
T. Hodge, in Anthropological Linguistics 892
Each vase contains a limb from the body of the slain Osiris,
out of which the body will be ritually put back together. Among the
directions for carrying out the festival of Khoiak, there are exact
instructions for preparing the limbs of Osiris body. They were
made of a special dough that was baked in wooden molds. We may
thus presume that along the Nile water, each of the vases contained
one of these limbs. The accompanying texts repeatedly make
mention of the discharges of Osiris.
Dr. Jan Assmann, Death and Salvation in Ancient Egypt 893

Joseph D. Reed, Arsinoes Adonis and the Poetics of Ptolemaic
Imperialism, Transactions of the American Philological Association 130 (2000):
331. (Emph. added.)
Schwabe (1982), 448. (Emph. added.)
Fig. 74: The broken body of a bread man, analogous to the ritual
breaking of the bread body of Osiris.

Fig. 75: The harvesting of grain, which of course grows from the inundating blood
of Osiris; from the tomb of Nakht, TT52, 14th century BCE.

Assmann (2001-05), 364. (Emph. added.)
Fig. 76: The making of bread from grain, which, like all grain, was produced by the
flesh and blood of Osiris; based on a scene from the tomb of Ramesses III, KV11, 12 th
century BCE.

He that Eateth My Flesh, and Drinketh My Blood, Hath Eternal Life

So it has now been proven beyond all possibility of dispute that the
blood of Osiris became wine and part of his broken body became bread.
As such, his body was consumed to sustain life, not only life in Egypt
(makes firm the bodies of the living), but also life beyond earth
(makes the gods divine and akhifies the akhs). The growth of grain and
grape after Osiriss death demonstrated that there could in fact be life
after death, and that the substance of Osiris body aided in providing it.
Thus it became a necessary part of funerary rituals to eat his flesh and
drink his blood in the form of specially consecrated bread and wine/red
beer. Even Osiris himself engaged in this act, in order to restore his life
essence which had been transferred into the grain and grape,
strengthening his body after resurrection. The deceased who sought to
identify with him in death also emulated this act, in remembrance of him,
that they too might have life restored to their bodies after death. This also
aided in identification with Osiris, for consuming his flesh meant that
they literally had a part of him inside themselves. They had literally

become one with Osiris. All of this was done in an effort to obtain
eternal life like him.
O Osiris the King, your mouth is split open with that of which
you have full measure--wine, a hATs-jar of white mnw-stone.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 48 36 894
O Osiris the King, take the ferment(?) which issued from you--
beer, a Hnt-bowl of black mnw-stone.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 49 37 895
O you who are put under the earth and are in darkness!--an AH-
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 52 38 896
O King, take the ferment(?) which issued from Osiris--beer, a
Hnt-bowl of black mnw-stone.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 55 39 897
I provide you with the ferment(?) which issued from you--a jar
of beer.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 95 64 898
O Osiris the King, take that which should be on you--2 HT-
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 113 73 899
O Osiris the King, I bring to you that which resembles(?) your
face--2 nHr-loaves.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 114 74 900
O Osiris the King, I have set your eye in place--4 dpt-loaves.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 115 74 901

Faulkner (1969), 10. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 11. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 22. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 25. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. (Emph. added.)
O Osiris the King, receive what should be on you--4 Sns-
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 117 75 902
O Osiris the King, take your eye, take possession of it--4 imy-
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 118 75 903
O Osiris the King, provide yourself with the ferment(?) which
issued from you--2 bowls of beer.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 148 90 904
O Osiris the King, provide yourself with the ferment(?) which
issued from you--2 bowls of sxpt-drink.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 149 90 905
O Osiris the King, provide yourself with the ferment(?) which
issued from you--2 bowls of px(A)-drink.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 150 90 906
O Osiris the King, provide yourself with the ferment(?) which
issued from you--2 bowls of Nubian beer.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 151 91 907
O Osiris the King, your mouth is split open by means of it--2
bowls of Lower Egyptian wine.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 153 92 908
O Osiris the King, open your eyes that you may see with them-
-2 bowls of zizyphus-bread.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 167 99 909
Geb has given you your eyes, that you may be content--a table
of offerings. O Osiris the King, you are his double--a qHA-loaf.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 175-76 102 910

Ibid. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 29. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 30. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 32. (Emph. added.)
Take the ferment(?) which issued from Osiris --2 jars of Hbt-
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 183 105 911
O Osiris the King, take the water which is in you--I give Horus
to you--[2(?)] jars of Tnm-beer.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 184 106 912
O my father the King, take the ferment(?) which issued from
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 202 117 913
Raise yourself to this bread of yours which knows no
mouldiness and your beer which knows no sourness, that you have
a soul thereby, that you may be effective thereby, that you may be
powerful thereby.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 457 859 914
You eldest son of Geb He who presides over Khem raises
you and has given a t-wr loaf and this grape-juice.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 610 1710, 23 915
The Valley gives you bread from the burial of her father
Coffin Texts, Spell 22 I, 64-65 916
Your xnfwloaves are Osiris.
Coffin Texts, Spell 67 I, 282 917
May you live on bread of red emmer, may you swallow beer of
red emmer at the pure place.
Coffin Texts, Spell 225 III, 236 918

Ibid. 33. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 34. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 37. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 152. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 253-54. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1973), 13. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 62.
Ibid. 177.
I write the news: a thousand of bread and beer on the altars of
my father Osiris.
Coffin Texts, Spell 278 III, 281-82 919
I am Osiris the gods live on me. I am emmer.
Coffin Texts, Spell 330 IV, 168-69 920
My blood is drunk, (even) my redness.
Coffin Texts, Spell 394 V, 67 921
My bread is in Pe and my beer in Dep, 922 and this power of
mine belongs to me. My power is bread and beer, my power is life,
prosperity, and health.
Coffin Texts, Spell 404 V, 198 923
I live on bread of white wheat, and my beer is of red barley.
Book of the Dead, Spell 52 b 2 924
I live in bread of red wheat of the Inundation in the pure
place; [I] sip beer [of] red [wheat] of the Inundation in the pure
Book of the Dead, Spell 68 S 4 925
Because my bread is of white wheat and (my) beer of red
Book of the Dead, Spell 102 b S 926
Because (my) bread is of white wheat and my beer of red
Book of the Dead, Spell 124 b S 927

Ibid. 181. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 254. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1977), 19.
See BOTD Spell 173 b 4.
Ibid. 50. (Emph. added.)
T.G. Allen (1974), 52.
Ibid. 62. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 83.
Ibid. 96.
O Osiris, I am thy son Horus. I have come; I have made thy
bread in Pe of red wheat. O Osiris, I am thy son Horus. I have
come; I have made thy beer in Dep of white barley.
Book of the Dead, Spell 173 b 4 928
I live on bread of white wheat and beer of red barley.
Book of the Dead, Spell 189 b S 2 929
While the next two spells are not funerary texts and are from late
papyri (though the contents are earlier930), they likewise continue in the
tradition of all the afore-cited scriptures of equating wine with the blood
of Osiris at his death. And they do so most explicitly.
I am this figure of One drowned, that testifieth by writing, that
resteth on the other side [?] here under the great offering-table of
Abydos; as to which the blood of Osiris bore witness to her [?]
name of Isis when it was poured into the cup, this wine . Give it,
blood of Osiris that he gave to Isis to make her feel love in her
heart for him night and day at any time, there not being time of
deficiency. Give it, the blood of [name] born of [name] to give it to
[name] born of [name] in this cup, this bowl of wine to-day, to
cause her to feel love for him in her heart, the love that Isis felt for
Osiris, when she was seeking him everywhere.
The London-Leiden Magical Papyrus, Col. XV 12-17 931
You are wine; you are not wine, but the guts of Osiris.
Greek Magical Papyrus VII.645-46 932

Ibid. 182.
Ibid. 211.
This especially applies to the first one, The London-Leiden Magical Papyrus.
See Dr. John M. Hull, Hellenistic Magic and the Synoptic Tradition (London: SCM
Press, 1974), 25-26. Behind the Greek lay an even older Egyptian original.
The written forms lying behind the present redaction of the papyrus are
therefore roughly late first century AD with older fragments, and the magical
procedures are very much older in some cases. (Emph. added.)
Brier (1980-2001), 288. (Emph. added.)
Papyri Graecae Magicae, VII.643-51, in The Greek Magical Papyri in
Translation Including the Demotic Spells, Volume One: Texts, Second Edition,
ed. H.D. Betz, trans. E.N. ONeil (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1986-
96), 136.
By the Blood of the Lamb

Now as for the next scripture from the Coffin Texts, Spell 226, a
brief preface is in order.
Osiris, foremost of the West, perfect of face, high of Atef-
crown; lord of the two horns mysterious ram-form.
Tomb of Imiseba, TT65, pl. 38A (12th cen. BCE) 933
Osiris was to remain the Mendesian bAi, the precious deity
rejuvenated as the ram (Dendera X, 288:12) and Banebdjed to
become, through Osiris, the living bai of the gods. In the
beatification text on the only inscribed ram-sarcophagus lid yet to
be found at Mendes, Banebdjed as Osiris is described in a
distinctly solarized form.
Dr. Susan Redford and Dr. Donald B. Redford, Divine
Creatures: Animal Mummies in Ancient Egypt
Ram gods were often regarded as manifestations of other
deities. Banebdjedet could be shown with four rams' heads
representing the four bas of the creator sun god. This linked
Banebdjedet with Osiris, who was often named as a ba of the sun
Dr. Geraldine Pinch, Egyptian Mythology: A Guide to the
Gods, Goddesses, and Traditions of Ancient Egypt 935
Another funerary god who appeared in the scenes was
Banebdjedet. This god was the local deity of the Delta city of
Mendes, called Pr Banebdjedet, the capital of the Sixteenth Lower
Egyptian Nome. He was represented as a ram with a strong body
and long curved horns. His name meant the soul of the lord of
djedt. This god was also called the lord of Djedet and was regarded
as the ba of the god Osiris.
Dr. Abeer el-Shahawy, The Funerary Art of Ancient Egypt: A
Bridge to the Realm of the Hereafter 936

Darnell (2004), 398.
Susan Redford and Donald B. Redford, The Cult and Necropolis of the
Sacred Ram at Mendes, Divine Creatures: Animal Mummies in Ancient Egypt,
ed. S. Ikram (Cairo: The American University in Cairo Press, 2005), 165.
Pinch (2002-04), 114.
So in addition to the animal forms of Osiris such as the bovine Apis
and the avian Sokar, he also had an ovine form- the sheep Banebdjed(et),
which indicated his union with his Father, Lord Amen-Re. And just as
the earthly mascot of Osiris-Apis was the bull of Memphis, the earthly
mascot of Banebdjed was the ram937 in Mendes. This is much like how,
aside from the red calf and the dove,938 the earthly mascot of The Good
Shepherd was the lamb of Salem sacrificed each spring.
The ram of Mendes is the ba of Osiris.
Book of the Heavenly Cow, 85-90 939
A god is manifested in sacred animals. The ram of Mendes is
the Ba of Osiris. Sokar, Harsaphes, the ram of Mendes, and the
sacred bull Apis, all of them, under different aspects, represent the
Ba of Osiris.
Dr. Louis V. abkar, A Study of the Ba Concept in Ancient
Egyptian Texts 940
There is a hymn to the Mendesian Ram (the bAram form of
Re-Osiris941), at the conclusion of which the speaker identifies
himself with this deity.
Dr. David Klotz, Adoration of the Ram: Five Hymns to
Amun-Re from Hibis Temple 942

Abeer el-Shahawy, The Funerary Art of Ancient Egypt: A Bridge to the Realm
of the Hereafter (Cairo: Farid Atiya Press, 2005), 70. (Emph. added.)
There is little doubt today that the Mendesian animal was a sheep.
Redford (2005), 169.
See also Salima Ikram, Choice Cuts: Meat Production in Ancient Egypt (Leuven:
Peeters Press, 1995), 17.
See p.161, and Fig. 147.
Wente (2003), 296.
abkar (1968), 13. (Emph. added.)
See Fig. 28, p.125.
Klotz (2006), 33.
Fig. 77: Banebdjed, the sheep form of Osiris; relief from the temple of Esna.

Fig. 78: Banebdjed surrounded & worshipped by four beasts (strikingly similar to a
scene later attributed to The Good Shepherd); from the Hypocephalus of Tasheritkhons
of the Ptolemaic Period, currently located at the British Museum.

That Osiris manifested as a ram, i.e. a male sheep, and that his
mascot was in Mendes in particular is interesting in light of a comment
made by Herodotus in Histories 2.42.2:
Egyptians do not all worship the same gods in the same way.
Only the gods Isis and Osiris are worshiped in the same manner
by all Egyptians. For example, those who have a sanctuary of
Mendes or are of the Mendesian district sacrifice sheep but not
He notes that in Mendes they sacrificed sheep, and this right after
mentioning the universal worship of Osiris, who himself was worshipped
as a sheep in Mendes. How conspicuous. It seems as though this slaying
of sheep in Mendes was done in remembrance of the slaying of the sheep
Banebdjed- Osiris himself. Thus it may be said that Osiris was the lamb
of God that was slain, but through his shed blood death will passover us,
so that we may passover into the kingdom of everlasting life. Lo, in the
midst of the throne and of the four beasts,944 sat a Lamb as it had been
slain, having eight horns and eight eyes.945 Worthy is the Lamb that
was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and
honour, and glory, and blessing. Let every creature which is in heaven,
and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and
all that are in them, be heard saying: Blessing, and honour, and glory,
and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the
Lamb for ever and ever. May we overcome death by the blood of the

Strassler (2009), 136.
Fig. 78.
Ibid. See also Fig. 77.
lamb, and by the word of our testimony. And speaking of his shed
blood, the point in even bringing up this fact about Osiris identity as a
ram is because of Coffin Text Spell 226. Concerning this spell,
Egyptologist Dr. William Ward wrote the following:
The emphasis on ram-gods here suggests that the Great God
whose name is unknown is none other than the Ram of Mendes
which did not possess a name but was known only as the Ram. 946
It being the case that the ram of this spell is indeed the ram of
Mendes, i.e. the symbol of Osiris ovine form, then this is yet another
text which involves drinking the blood of Osiris and eating his bread.
Eat your portion, consisting of this pure bread which is issued,
namely the collected loaves of this great god whose name is
Ho N! Drink your portion, consisting of this pure water which
issued upon this plateau of the citizens, for that Ram who is in his
blood has given to you what is in his redness. May you eat bread
and drink beer.
Coffin Texts, Spell 226 III, 257-59 947
Yet in spite of the irrefutable amount of evidence presented here,
both from primary texts and scholarly literature, the heathen remain
ignorant and/or obstinate. I have witnessed several of them claiming that
all cultures eat grain and drink juice and fermented beverages, and
therefore this is something generic. Some have even alleged that these
Egyptian rituals have no significance and certainly no association with
the flesh and blood of a dying god, and that any of us who claim such an
association are repeating a lie. I recall one heathen in particular alleging:
Okay, now Ive already mentioned the whole thing about the, um, that
yes there were in fact ritual meals all over the world so its not really an
issue. Now the whole thing about the body and blood of Osiris-
wrong! Youre just flat out wrong. The source for that, again, is Gerald
Massey who made it up. [I] defy you to find an Egyptologist that will, a
current Egyptologist that will, back that. It is complete and utter

William Ward, The Four Egyptian Homographic Roots B-A: Etymological and
Egypto-Semitic Studies (Rome: Biblical Institute Press, 1978), 159. (Emph.
Faulkner (1973), 179. (Emph. added.)
nonsense. The only source you find is Massey. There are no primar
there is no primary source evidence for it. The earliest source that Im
aware of is Massey. I may be able to find it in an earlier person into
pagan parallels, but [who] actually pre-dates the Rosetta Stone, but the
only one Ive been able to find it in so far is Massey. Its the earliest one.
And it has no basis- end of story.948
Elsewhere, the same source claimed: Lots of religions had feasts,
meals, meals [that the] people in that religion [would] engage in, um, and
one of them with Osiris had bread and beer. Uh, but theres no evidence
of anything about it being his body and blood and some of his uh,
Ive said Id like to see this evidence. They never produce it.949
Until today, until here in this present work- however, the evidence
produced herein has been progressively made available in literature and
media across the last century or more. The foolishness of the previous
heathen statements has already been exposed in this chapter, but as one
final courtesy regarding this topic (since the heathen defied us to find a
current Egyptologist that will back that), I return again to Dr. Mojsov,
as interviewed by Dr. Robert Beckford:
Beckford: Egyptologist Dr. Bojana Mojsov is an expert in the
ancient cult of Osiris. I met her in Abydos, in Upper Egypt,
at the 3,300 year old temple dedicated to the cult of Osiris.
Can you tell me what happened here?
Mojsov: The eating of corn bread as the body of Osiris, because
corn came about through the sacrifice of Osiris, so this whole
eating of bread and drinking of beer that issued from the risen
god is also paralleled
Beckford: So the corn bread and the beer are paralleled today by
having the bread and the wine?
Mojsov: Exactly.950

949 (Emph. added.)
Bojana Mojsov, in Egyptologists prove zeitgeist is right, video, 9:05, posted
by micap20078, June 19, 2010, dir. David Batty (London: Juniper
Communications, 2007),
So as has been seen, there are current Egyptologists and other
scholars who back that, and for good reason- because there are primary
sources that corroborate with it. Also, as has been seen, this eating of
bread and wine/red beer in these texts was not mundane or generic- it
had a very specific meaning. This bread and wine/beer both literally and
symbolically contained the flesh and blood of the broken body of the god
for which it was eaten in remembrance of. They are also consumed in an
attempt to gain eternal life. And while various other festivals and
funerary rituals involve the eating of various other kinds of foods beyond
just bread and wine, it is the bread and wine/beer which is given special
significance, and which is used the most frequently.
The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the
blood of Osiris? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of
the body of Lord Osiris? For we being many are one bread, and one
body: for we are all partakers of that one bread. For as often as ye eat
this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lords death till he come.
Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the
Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But
let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink
of that cup. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and
drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lords body. Except
ye eat the flesh of the son of Re, and drink his blood, ye have no life in
you. Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to
the glory of God.

Fig. 79

Whom They Slew and Hanged on a Tree

After having been slain, at some point in the story between death and
resurrection, it is said that the corpse of Osiris was hung on a tree. The
chronology given by Plutarch has the suspension in a tree taking place
prior to the dismemberment of Osiris, and thanks to Plutarch this is the
most often repeated chronology in modern publications. However, the
Egyptian sources I have so far encountered, which predate Plutarch,
indicate that this hanging upon a tree took place after the
dismemberment and reassembling of the corpse yet just prior to the
resurrection. In fact, this even seems to have been a necessary phase in
preparing the body to be resurrected. Rituals such as those at Dendera
and Edfu were performed to reenact this event by hanging an effigy of
Osiris upon a sycamore tree.

The one who is upon his sycamore,
O brightness of the banks, the one who is upon his imA tree,
O Lord of green fields.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 403 699 951
On Khoiak 24th is the [day] when Osiris is buried in the
embalming workshop ... As for the [last day] of Khoiak, erection of
the djed pillar at Busiris, the day of the funeral of Osiris ... From
Khoiak 24th until the last day (of the month), the god is lain on the
branches of a sycamore at the door of the High Busiris.
The Dendera Chapel of Osiris, Col. 94-96 952
On the twenty-fourth day [of Khoiak] when the boats returned
the effigy of Osiris was removed, placed in a coffin of mulberry
wood, and laid in a grave two hours after sunset. At the ninth hour
of the night the image of the previous year was put in the branches
of a sycamore tree. On the thirtieth day of the month, when the
inundation was due to subside and the sowing of the grain to begin,
the effigy in its box was taken to a subterranean chamber and
placed on a bed of sand, there to rest until the ceremony was re-
enacted the following year with its successor.
Dr. Edwin O. James, Seasonal Feasts and Festivals 953
A text from Dendera speaks of placing the statue of Osiris
on branches of sycamore for seven days, to symbolize seven
Dr. John G. Griffiths, Apuleius of Madauron: The Isis-Book 954

Tobin, loc. cit. (Emph. added.)
Sylvie Cauville, Le Temple de Dendera: Les chapelles osiriennes, Bibliothque
dtude 118 (Cairo: French Institute for Oriental Archaeology in Cairo, 1997),
223. (Emph. added.)
Edwin O. James, Seasonal Feasts and Festivals (London: Thames & Hudson
Inc., 1961-93), 56-57. (Emph. added.)
Griffiths (1975), 36.
Fig. 80

The Tree Grew, and Was Strong

His mummy hung upon the tree for so long (seven months) that the
tree began to grow around Osiris, embracing him within its self.
Hail to you, you tree which encloses the god which sends
out the pains of death.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 574 1485-86 955

Faulkner (1969), 229. (Emph. added.)
I am the tousled one who came forth from his iAttree (I
am) Osiris.
Book of the Dead, Spell 179 a S, b S 2 956
Osiris is often represented wrapped as a mummy with a green
face. In tomb 373, he is represented as a human being. In another
scene of the same tomb (P1.63) he is represented standing within a
tree, to whom the deceased is giving praise. His body is destroyed,
but his green face is still preserved.
Dr. M. Abdul-Qader Mohammed, The Development of the
Funerary Beliefs and Practices Displayed in the Private Tombs of
the New Kingdom at Thebes 957
The coffin enclosing his corpse had lodged itself in the
branches of an Erica tree, which had then quickly grown up around
it and enclosed it.
Dr. Patricia A. Johnston, in Mystic Cults in Magna Graecia 958
The chest washes ashore in Byblos; and it is blown by a storm
into the branches of a tree. The tree grows to tremendous
proportions, encompassing the chest in the trunk.
Dr. Rivka Ulmer, Egyptian Cultural Icons in Midrash 959
This erica (Plutarchs ) cedar, or Sycamore tree is said to
enclose or enfold Osiris (PT 1485).
Dr. Samuel A.B. Mercer, The Religion of Ancient Egypt 960
The body of Osiris could also be shown regenerating inside a
Dr. Geraldine Pinch, Egyptian Mythology: A Guide to the Gods,
Goddesses, and Traditions of Ancient Egypt

T.G. Allen (1974), 190. (Emph. added.)
M. Abdul-Qader Mohammed, The Development of the Funerary Beliefs and
Practices Displayed in the Private Tombs of the New Kingdom at Thebes (Cairo:
General Organization for Government Printing Offices, 1966), 196. (Emph.
Johnston (2009), 258.
Ulmer (2009), 117.
Mercer (1949), 104.
Pinch (2002-04), 179.
She is a Tree of Life to Them that Lay Hold upon Her

The aspect of regeneration mentioned there by Pinch leads right into

the next point. This embrace occurred because apparently the one who
placed the corpse of Osiris upon this tree was his mother Nut, who
manifested hypostatically as the tree (as she was often known to do 962)
specifically for this purpose. This was an act of the mother embracing
her child, and then resealing him inside of her womb so that he could
once again gestate within her. This allowed for healing and restoration of
the body, making it ready to, quite literally, be born again after death.
This too was another thing emulated in funerary ritual by the deceased.
I have embraced the sycamore, and the sycamore has
sheltered me.
Book of the Dead, Spell 64 S 17 963
A text from Denderah speaks of placing the statue of Osiris
on branches of sycamore for seven days, to symbolize seven
months in the womb of Nut, goddess of the sycamore . Here, at any
rate, is the symbolic equation of days and months.
Dr. John G. Griffiths, Apuleius of Madauron: The Isis-Book 964
Yes, the tree is frequently connected with the mother-goddess,
who is often worshipped as a tree, but there is an even closer
relationship: for instance Osiris who hung in his coffin in a tree.
There the tree is what one generally in mythology calls the death-
mother. The coffin in the tree, and the dead person being put in
the coffin, was interpreted as being given back to the mother, put
back into the tree, the death-mother.
Dr. Marie-Louise von Franz, The Problem of the Puer
Aeternus 965

See Fig. 81-82.
T.G. Allen (1974), 58.
Griffiths, loc. cit. (Emph. added.)
Marie-Louise von Franz, The Problem of the Puer Aeternus (Toronto: Inner
City Books, 1970-2000), 59.
Fig. 81: Nut in hypostasis as a sycamore tree, nursing the royal child; from the tomb of
Thutmose III, KV34, 15th century BCE.

Fig. 82

Nut had the symbolic form of a sycamorethe tree into which

was laid, and subsequently buried, a figure of Osiris, made of earth
mixed with grain.
Dr. Karol Myliwiec, Eros on the Nile 966
According to the Dendera Text, the god would lay in state
during the remaining week of the year, until new spring, that is for
the seven days of Osiris stay in the womb of his mother Nut,
when she was pregnant with him. A day stands for a month: the
sycamore boughs represent Nut.
Dr. Christian Roy, Traditional Festivals: A Multicultural
Encyclopedia, Volume 1 A-L 967

Karol Myliwiec, Eros on the Nile, trans. G.L. Packer (Ithaca: Cornell
University Press, 1998-2004), 61.
Christian Roy, Traditional Festivals: A Multicultural Encyclopedia, Volume 1
A-L (Santa Barbara: ABC-CLIO, Inc., 2005), 226.
The sycamore tree was a manifestation of Nut. The leaves
shielded the dead Osiris and the branches were said to have
restored his soul.
Charles R. Coulter and Patricia Turner, Encyclopedia of
Ancient Deities 968
It is expressly stated that the seven days during which the old
corn-mummies lay on sycamore branches stood for the seven
months Osiris lay in his mothers womb. If we leave aside the
significance of the number seven for Osiris, it seemed, at least to a
late Egyptian theologian, that to lie on sycamore branches was to be
reborn of Nut: for the sycamore of the underworld was the tree of
Nut, heavenly mother though she might be. For Osiris the
equation chest = coffin = tree = mothers womb and means of
rebirth, seems virtually certain.
N.M. Holley, in The Journal of Hellenic Studies 969
The hanging of Osiris upon this tree was done to further regenerate
his body and thus, to borrow the words of one heathen, this event most
indubitably sets the stage for the resurrection.970 What initially
appeared to be a tree of woe actually became a tree of life. Thus it may
be said of the Great Mother Nut that she is a tree of life to them that lay
hold upon her: and happy is every one that retaineth her. Length of
days is in her right hand.

Hew Down the Tree, and Cut Off His Branches

A symbol came to be used to represent this tree upon which Osiris

hung, which is known today as the djed, or tet. This symbol was a cross,
a cross composed of a vertical beam with four horizontal beams (Fig. 85
& 86). These are said to represent the trunk and branches. Some even
claim that the tree itself, the very same one in which Nut manifested and

Charles R. Coulter and Patricia Turner, Encyclopedia of Ancient Deities (New
York: Routledge, 2000-12), 353.
N.M. Holley, The Floating Chest, The Journal of Hellenic Studies 69 (1949):
44. (Emph. added.)
Albert, crucifixion dodgeball, King David 8 .com (April 13, 2012),
her son was rejuvenated, was hewn down and carved into the very first
Hail to you tree which encloses the god Your top is beside
you for Osiris when the Ddpillar of the Great One is loosed.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 574 1485-86 971
DJED-PILLAR: Cult object resembling a tree trunk with
lopped-off horizontal branches, sacred to Osiris, Ptah, and Sokar.
Dr. Eva Von Dassow, in The Egyptian Book of the Dead: The
Book of Going Forth by Day, Being the Papyrus of Ani 972
The sacredness of vegetation in Egypt is expressed
mythologically and ritually in the characterization of Osiris, who is
perhaps basically a water deity in the special sense of the water as
source of fertility for the soil. In this way he becomes associated
intimately with vegetative life itself and variously is linked with
grain, with the persea and the sycamore, and with the acacia trees
that grow in the eastern Delta. The most ancient symbol of this
deity, who can almost be called a tree god, is the so-called Djed or
Stability column. This emblem, presumably arising in the Delta
home of Osiris, was perhaps his only embodiment in the earliest
The Djed symbol represents the transformation of a tree to a
sacred post. In its classic form, supposedly representing a tree with
lopped-off branches, it has the appearance of a pillar with four
superimposed ledges or capitals, one above the other.
Dr. Carol L. Meyers, The Tabernacle Menorah: A Synthetic
Study of a Symbol from the Biblical Cult 973
One amulet found on almost every mummy and made from
materials as varied as precious metal, stone, glazed composition,
glass and wood was the curiously shaped djed-pillar with its
distinctive four short cross-bars at the top. One suggestion is that
originally it represented a stylized tree trunk with its branches
lopped off.

Faulkner (1969), 229. (Emph. added.)
Eva Von Dassow, A Glossary of Common Terms and Concepts, in The
Egyptian Book of the Dead: The Book of Going Forth by Day, Being the Papyrus
of Ani, ed. E. Von Dassow (San Francisco: Chronicle Books LLC, 1994-2008), 173.
Carol L. Meyers, The Tabernacle Menorah: A Synthetic Study of a Symbol
from the Biblical Cult (Piscataway: Gorgia Press LLC, 2003), 109-10. (Emph.
Dr. Carol Andrews, Egyptian Mummies 974
In its nature and origin the Ddpillar is no doubt the leafless
tree, the tree or plant of life corporalizing the vegetation deity
Osiris and the king, who is identical with him.
Dr. Ivan Engnell, Studies in Divine Kingship in the Ancient
Near East 975
The Djed may have well originated as a kind of lopped tree, so
that the verdant colours green and blue are appropriate.
Dr. John G. Griffiths, in Ex Orbe Religionum 976

Fig. 83: Representations of the djed cross of Osiris. The left is based on a painted wooden
stela of the Ptolemaic Period. The right is from the reign of Ramesses IX, 12 th century
BCE, from the Saqqara Serapeum and currently at the Louvre Museum.

Carol Andrews, Egyptian Mummies (Cambridge: Harvard University Press,
1984-2004), 41. (Emph. added.)
Ivan Engnell, Studies in Divine Kingship in the Ancient Near East (Oxford:
Basil Blackwell, 1943-67), 10-11.
John G. Griffiths, The Symbolism of Red in Egyptian Religion, in Ex Orbe
Religionum: Studia Geo Widengren Oblata I, ed. B. Layton (Leiden: E.J. Brill,
1972), 86.
Fig. 84: The cross of The Good Shepherd is often portrayed in a form comparable to the
much older djed cross of Osiris. The left djed is from the 6th century BCE and the right is
from the New Kingdom Period, both are currently at the Walters Art Museum.

Therefore the tree from which Osiris hung was turned into a cross.

Take Up the Cross

So that being the case that the djed was the symbol (and final form)
of the tree of Osiris, the tree which regenerated his body and aided in his
resurrection, it became customary to annually raise a djed on the day
when Osiris was resurrected in remembrance of him. Hence this cross
was a symbol for both death and resurrection.
The ritual of erecting the Djed (9d) was an annual event
included in Egyptian temple calendars dating from the New
Kingdom to the Ptolemaic and Roman periods. This ritual episode
took place on the last day of the ten-day Osiris festival held from
the 21st to the 30th of the Egyptian month Khoiak, and in this
context, the rite was equated with the resurrection of Osiris and his
ultimate triumph over his enemies.
Dr. Ian S. Moyer, Egypt and the Limits of Hellenism 977
The scenes on the walls in this area depict the rites which
culminated in the raising of the djed-pillar, which probably
symbolized the climax of the festival, when the god was believed to
return to life. The djed-pillar came to represent strength and
permanence to the Egyptians and to be an essential symbol of the
gods resurrection.
Dr. Ann Rosalie David, The Ancient Egyptians: Beliefs and
Practices 978
In Busiris, these funeral services were accompanied by another
important ceremony, the erecting of the divine column, or Djed,
that signaled the gods resurrection.
Dr. Dimitri Meeks and Dr. Christine Favard-Meeks, Daily
Life of the Egyptian Gods 979
The idea it presents is that in standing firmly upright, it affirms
the existence of living plants and of all life; to be upright is to be
alive, to defy the inert forces of death and decay. The cultic setting
of the Djed symbol is related closely to the myth of Osiris; the Djed

Ian S. Moyer, Egypt and the Limits of Hellenism (Cambridge: Cambridge
University Press, 2011), 175. (Emph. added.)
David (1998), 109.
Meeks (1993-96), 173. (Emph. added.)
is set upright on the day of his rebirth, at the time of the annual
renewal of nature.
Dr. Carol L. Meyers, The Tabernacle Menorah: A Synthetic
Study of a Symbol from the Biblical Cult 980
In Egypt the oldest emblem of Osiris, the Djed-column, has
the appearance of the pillar, either as a tree with the branches
lopped off, probably a conifer The probability is that originally it
was a sacred tree devoid of its branches, and that its ceremonial
raising at the autumnal festival indicated his restoration from the
grave at the Season of Coming Forth when the fructifying waters
of the Nile were beginning their annual renewal of the soil and its
Dr. Edwin O. James, The Tree of Life: An Archaeological
The raising of the Ddpillar thus denotes the resurrection of
Osiris, and thereby also the kings restoration to life, his
Dr. Ivan Engnell, Studies in Divine Kingship in the Ancient
Near East 982
The taking up of said djed cross resulted in imagery comparable to
that seen in the raising of Roman crosses. In fact, even to this day it is a
common practice to erect a cross at ones burial, which is likewise
comparable to the erecting of the djed to commemorate the burial (and
resurrection) of Osiris.

Meyers, (2003), 110. (Emph. added.)
Edwin O. James, The Tree of Life: An Archaeological Study (Leiden: E.J. Brill,
1966), 38, 40. (Emph. added.)
Engnell (1943-67), 11. (Emph. added.)
Fig. 85: Taking up the cross of the djed in rememberence of Osiris; from the chapel of
Osiris at the Temple of Seti I in Abydos, 13 th century BCE.- similar to the much later
scenes of the taking up of The Good Shepherds cross.

Fig. 86: Another depiction of taking up the djed cross of Osiris; based on a scene from
the tomb of Kheruef, TT192, 14th century BCE.

Fig. 87: Taking up the Roman cross, in The Crucifixion of Philip by Filippino Lippi.

Fig. 88: Even today, crosses are taken up at burial sites to commemorate death and the
hope of resurrection.

Fig. 89: The djed cross of Osiris flanked by circular ankh crosses (c. 1350 BCE)
compared to the Roman cross of The Good Shepherd flanked by circular Coptic crosses.

As a form of the tree from which he hung, sometimes images of
Osiris were placed upon the djed cross, with the cross positioned along
the back of Osiris. The resulting image was somewhat comparable to
Roman crucifixion, which likewise involved affixing a person to a cross
vertically along the back. Because of this, the djed eventually came to
also represent the backbone of Osiris, and by extension, stability. Also,
yet again, the deceased who identified with Osiris emulated this feature,
so that they too could be on the cross with him.
Kindle flame in secret, that the darkness may depart from
before thee, while the hand that it conceals erects the 9dPillar
behind thee.
Book of the Dead, Spell Pleyte 171 S 983
Represented as the bare trunk of a tree stripped of its leaves
the pillar might well be interpreted as the back-bone of Osiris and
its raising on New Years Eve the enactment of his resurrection.
Dr. Edwin O. James, The Tree of Life: An Archaeological
The tree trunk origin seems highly likely. Later, however,
Osiris, god of the dead, adopted the djed as one of his symbols and
from that time onwards it was looked upon as a stylized
representation of the gods backbone.
Dr. Carol Andrews, Egyptian Mummies 985
The coffin is mummiform but is placed on a pedestal, as if the
mummy had been converted into an image that was mounted on a
base. It is supported by a pillar along the back, just as is found in
statuary. Once again, the deceased is transformed into an image of
a sah. The pillar was painted with a djed and emphasized the
deceaseds relationship with Osiris.
Dr. Salima Ikram, Death and Burial in Ancient Egypt 986
The headless statuette987 MMA 30.8.74 (pl. IV, 1-2) is another
of this type in dark serpentine, where in jubilee/Amarna attire, his

T.G. Allen (1974), 221. (Emph. added.)
James (1966), 40.
Andrews (1984-2004), 42.
Salima Ikram, Death and Burial in Ancient Egypt (London: Longman, 2003),
123. (Emph. added.)
Fig. 92.
hands clasped before him, Amenhotep III with the djed-pillar at
his back is associated with the god Osiris.
Dr. W. Raymond Johnson, in The Journal of Egyptian
Archaeology 988
One special festival depicted on the walls of the Abydos
temple is that of Raising the Djed-pillar. The ceremony referred
to the resurrection of Osiris and the djed motif is often found
painted on the bottom of coffins so that the backbone of the
deceased would rest on the image of the backbone of Osiris. Its
restorative power would then ensure that the dead would return to
life, just as Osiris had in mythology.
Dr. Lorna Oakes and Lucia Gahlin, Ancient Egypt 989
By the New Kingdom, the djed was closely associated with the
mythology of Osiris. The taboo subject of the murder of Osiris
could be alluded to by saying that Seth had laid the djed on its
side. Scenes in temples or royal tombs show the god Horus (or
the king playing the role of Horus) raising the djed column to help
his father Osiris to rise from the dead. The Book of the Dead
contains a spell to be spoken over a gold djed amulet hung round
the neck of a mummy. This spell promises that the dead person
will get back the use of his or her spine and be able to sit up again
like Osiris. A djed column was sometimes painted on the bottom
of coffins for the same reason.
Dr. Geraldine Pinch, Egyptian Mythology: A Guide to the Gods,
Goddesses, and Traditions of Ancient Egypt

W. Raymond Johnson, Amenhotep III and Amarna: Some New
Considerations, The Journal of Egyptian Archaeology 82 (1996): 70.
Oakes (2002-05), 165. (Emph. added.)
Pinch (2002-04), 128. (Emph. added.)
Fig. 90: Osiris affixed to his djed cross, representing the tree on which he was hung;
based on a bronze statuette from the 6 th-5th century BCE, currently featured by The
California Institute of World Archaeology in Santa Barbara.

Fig. 91: Another such statue depicting Osiris with a djed cross upon his back.

Fig. 92: Amenhotep III likewise portrayed with the djed cross of Osiris affixed to his
back, in an attempt to identify himself with the god;991 based on a damaged statue of the
14th century BCE, currently at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

See p.318-19 above.
Fig. 93: Ptah-Osiris992 affixed to the djed cross; based on a scene from the rear north
wall of the tomb of Horemheb, KV57, 13th century BCE.

See pp.130-33.
Fig. 94: Ptah, seen here again with a djed cross placed at his back like Osiris; from the 5 th
century BCE, currently at the Walters Art Museum.

Fig. 95: Depictions of coffins with the djed cross along the back, in emulation of Osiris.

Fig. 96: Another example of the djed cross placed along the back of a coffin, this time on
the interior; currently at the Louvre Museum.

This placing of the djed cross on ones coffin or sarcophagus is
somewhat reminiscent of the tradition, still practiced today, of placing
Roman, Celtic, and other crosses on coffins and sarcophagi.

Fig. 97

Fig. 98

Fig. 99

Fig. 100

Fig. 101

So the effigy of Osiris was literally affixed to a cross and by
definition was indeed crucified. The Osirified deceased who emulated
this on their coffins and sarcophagi were, in effect,993 being crucified
with him in burial. Thus they may say I am crucified with Qrst:994
nevertheless I live.
Some worshippers of Osiris, however, quite literally took up their
crosses, when they were persecuted by the Romans and martyred via
When Tiberius had fully informed himself by examining the
priests, he crucified both them and Ida, for the hellish thing was
her doing and it was she who had contrived the whole plot against
the lady's honor. Moreover, he razed the temple and ordered the
statue of Isis to be cast into the Tiber River.
Flavius Josephus, Antiquities 79 (1st cen. CE) 995
There are heathen who try to object to the usage of the word
crucifixion to describe the relationship of Osiris and the djed and his tree.
For some reason, many of them seem nervous about the idea that such a
story existed centuries or even millennia prior to the Common Era, and
even more nervous at the suggestion that this imagery is comparable to

Recall the use of sympathetic magic; see pp.23-26, 222, and 246.
An Egyptian word meaning burial, coffin, or sarcophagus (quite
appropriate here), and thus it was also a special epithet for Osiris Sokar as Lord
of Burial. See also p.575.
See also Edward Brovarski, Sokar, in Lexikon der gyptologie: Band V
Pyramidenbau-Steingefe, eds. C. Meyer and R. Schichting (Wiesbaden: Otto
Harrassowitz GmbH & Co. KG, 1984), 1058.
Mark Collier and Bill Manley, How to Read Egyptian Hieroglyphs: A Step-by-Step
Guide to Teach Yourself (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1998), 12, 64,
Hedvig Gyry, The Story of the Gamhud Excavations, in Orientalia
Lovaniensia Analecta: Proceedings of the Ninth International Congress of
Egyptologists: Volume 1, ed. J.C. Goyon, C. Cardin (Leuven: Peeters Publishers,
2007), 914.
Assmann (1984-2001), 85.
Assmann (1995-2009), 107, 184, 196.
J.P. Allen (2000-10), 366.
Flavius Josephus, Antiquities, in Josephus: Antiquities, Books 18-19, trans.
H.St.J. Thackeray (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1965-96), 57.
that of Roman crucifixion. Why that makes them so nervous is anyones
guess, but regardless, the fact remains that such is the case. Crucifixion
simply means to affix to a cross.996 And back during the infancy of the
Common Era, the period which these heathen seem so concerned about,
the popular terms for crucifixion in use back then, such as ,
had an even broader definition. Such words were used to refer to
Carthaginian crucifixion997 and to things such as the posthumous
hanging of a corpse upon a tree in Egypt.998 The latter, of course, also
being what happened to the body of Osiris. Thus in such a context as the
Mediterranean world of the 1st century CE, both the hanging of Osiris
body on a tree and the placing of his effigy upon the djed cross could
equally be referred to as crucifixion. In fact, there were even several
instances of Roman crucifixion having taken place upon trees that were
still rooted into the ground999 instead of a manufactured cross (Fig. 104).

Larry Sibley, Luke: Gospel for the City (Elgin: David C. Cook Publishing Co.,
1988), 76.
John F. Collins, A Primer of Ecclesiastical Latin (Washington, D.C.: The Catholic
University of America Press, 1985), 130.
Randolph O. Yeager, The Renaissance New Testament (Gretna: Pelican
Publishing Co., Inc., 1985), 205.
Plutarch, Lives, in Plutarchs Lives: Volume III, trans. B. Perrin (London:
William Heinemann Ltd., and Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press,
1916-58), 136-37.
Flavius Josephus, Antiquities, in Josephus: Antiquities, Books 1-3, trans.
H.St.J. Thackeray (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1930-98), 199-201.
Tertullian of Carthage, Apologeticus IX.2, in Tertullian: Apology, De
Spectaculis, trans. T.R. Glover (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1931-98),
Fig. 102: Examples of the kinds of trees used by ancient Romans for crucifixion.

Fig. 103: More illustrations of Roman crucifixion upon trees.

Fig. 104

Fig. 105

As a bystander, I have also observed heathen who, while conceding
the previous points just made, still try to deny that the term crucifixion is
applicable to Osiris in any way, shape, or form by claiming that Osiris
was not hung on a tree, but rather inside of the tree.1000 This is ignorant,
not only because of the sources already covered on the previous pages
here, but also because while Osiris certainly did end up inside of the tree,
he only ended up in that circumstance because he first hung on the tree,
and hung on it for so long that the tree grew around him. This is not an
uncommon occurrence; many objects that remain suspended upon or
bound to trees for an extended period of time become embedded within
the body of the tree itself (Fig. 106).

Fig. 106: An example of an object (a stone cross) which remained on a tree for so long
that the tree has grown around it.

KingDavid8, Re: Exposed, Freethought Nation (March 18,
I recall seeing one heathen in particular who even claimed that there
is a version of the Osiris story in which, after being killed by Seth, his
dead body is put inside a wooden pillar. Mythicists refer to this as a
crucifixion, when it clearly is not - in fact its far closer to a modern
burial, in which someones body is enclosed in a wooden casket!1001
The ludicrousness of this has been thoroughly exposed in this chapter.
What happened to Osiris with the tree was not closer to being enclosed
in a wooden casket, because he had already been placed in such a
chest prior to having been hung upon the sycamore tree. And it is that
chest which Seth had his body stuffed inside of, rather than inside a
wooden pillar. Osiris was indeed hung on a tree, which was
subsequently made into a cross upon which his effigy was placed. And,
unlike that heathen, this chapter here actually provides the imagery of
this to show that it is definitely comparable to imagery of Roman
crucifixion, much more so than it is to being enclosed in a wooden
casket. It is also certainly more similar to Roman crucifixion than
comparisons made by the heathen themselves, such as placing a
sculpture of a snake upon a pole.
In fact, the similarity is further strengthened when the djed cross is
merged with the other popular Egyptian cross known as the ankh, which
was often done in ancient Kemet. As seen in Fig. 110 & 111, the
resemblance is undeniable.

David Anderson, Mythicists and Crucifixion, King David 8 .com (accessed
August 23, 2013),
Fig. 107: Illustrations of djed-ankh crosses. The left is based on a votive faience amulet
from the 8th7th century BCE, currently located at the British Museum. The right is
likewise based on a faience amulet from the Third Intermediate Period.

Fig. 108: An illustrated example of Roman crosses in Egypt, cf. Fig. 107.

Not only is this form of the djed cross even more conspicuously
parallel to the Roman cross, but it also has a strong similarity to certain
styles of early Celtic and Ethiopian crosses as well, some of which even
have multiple cross-bars just like the djed itself. The latter is particularly
interesting given that since ancient times Ethiopia was known to indulge
in the worship of Osiris.1002

Fig. 109: Some ancient Celtic crosses.

Herodotus, Histories 2.29.7, in Strassler (2009), 129, n.2.29.7b.
Fig. 110: An assortment of Ethiopian crosses, conspicuously similar to the shapes of the
djed and djed-ankh cross. Simply remove the main horizontal cross-bar, and what
remains essentially is a standard djed.

Having previously established that there was a tradition of placing
images of Osiris (and those identified with him) upon djed crosses, just
imagine the result when such a custom is done with the above form of
the djed from Fig. 110.

Fig. 111

One final thing to note here concerning the cross is that it is now
known that some of the mummy effigies are made of wooden crosses.
At times the effigies used for magical spells were rather
elaborate. One which [Dr. Brier] recently unwrapped was made of
two sticks tied together to form a cross. These sticks were padded
with course cloth to give them the general shape of a person, and
then three small tunics of three different kinds of cloth were tied on
the figure.
Dr. Bob Brier, Ancient Egyptian Magic 1003

Fig. 112: An example of the cruciform mummy effigies mentioned by Dr. Brier above.

So not only did the ancient Egyptians place effigies in trees and upon
crosses, but at times the effigy itself was a cross made from a tree as
well. No wonder Tertullian of Carthage once wrote in Apologeticus 16.7:
We have said that in the first instance your gods are moulded
by the sculptors on a cross.1004
And likewise Minucius Felix, in The Octavius 29.6, stated:
It is very possible that as you consecrate gods of wood, you
adore crosses of wood because they form part of your gods.1005
Alas, the heathen arguments previously mentioned affirm that the
preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness. They are the

Brier (1980-2001), 127. (Emph. added.)
Tertullian, in Glover (1931-98), 83.
Minucius Felix, The Octavius, trans. G.W. Clarke (New York: Paulist Press,
1974), 106.
enemies of the cross. But unto us which are saved, it is the power of

They Took Him Down from the Tree, and Laid Him in a Sepulchre

Eventually the corpse of Osiris finally came to rest in his tomb and
was buried. This, of course, is not something typically contested by the
heathen, but nevertheless, it is the final clause of this particular portion of
the Perennial Gospel covered in this chapter.
O you who are put under the earth and are in darkness!
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 52 38 1006
O Osiris the tomb is your barrier against me.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 223 215-16 1007
Your tomb(?), O Osiris, your shade which is over you, O
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 574 1487 1008
O Osiris I have mourned you at the tomb.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 690 2111-12 1009
I am your son, O you who are greatly sleepy and mightily
weary, who buried his father, Lord of the West. I am your son
Coffin Texts, Spell 44 I, 183, 190
As for the Tnntshrine, it is the tomb of Osiris.
Coffin Texts, Spell 335 (b) IV, 325 1011
They were stationed by Anubis as magical protection of
[Osiris] coffin. VARIANT: back of Osiris tomb. The Tnnt
sanctuary is Osiris tomb.

Faulkner (1969), 10.
Ibid. 52.
Ibid. 229.
Ibid. 299.
Faulkner (1973), 36-37. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 266.
Book of the Dead, Spell 17 S 13, b S 5 1012
Hail to thee, Osiris Unnofer lord of the tomb.
Book of the Dead, Spell 128 a S 1 1013
Come, [Osiris] great one (aA) of the Crypt, tomb-dweller.
Book of the Dead, Spell Pleyte 168 S 1, 8 1014

Fig. 113: The corpse of Osiris at rest in his tomb; from the Temple of Hathor in Dendera.

Fig. 114

T.G. Allen (1974), 29, 31.
Ibid. 104.
Ibid. 218.
Fig. 115

Fig. 116

Fig. 117

Fig. 118

Fig. 119

Thus concludes this chapter. But alas, though they came and took up
his corpse, and laid it in a tomb, God hath said O death, I will be thy
plagues; O grave, I will be thy destruction. For He hath brought to
pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. O
death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?

Chapter Five
On the Third Day He Rose Again from the Dead

He was Buried, and that He Rose Again the Third Day

Even in death, the body of Osiris could not rest in peace; it endured
many trials- decomposition, dismemberment, reconstitution, seventy
days of mummification, suspension upon a tree for seven months, etc.
But eventually, after going through all of that, Osiris was finally laid to
rest in his tomb. This involved many funerary rites, such as a great
procession with the singing of lamentation hymns, and most importantly,
the reciting of the magical spells of the holy scriptures which were
inscribed on the tomb walls.
We must assume that the Pyramid Texts are an exact replica,
on the subterranean walls of the tomb, of the texts recited during
the mummification and burial rituals.
Dr. Jan Assmann, The Mind of Egypt: History and
Meaning in the Time of the Pharaohs 1015
The texts were inscribed to be read from the burial chamber
to the antechamber, understood as the horizon, and would have
accompanied the deceased pharaoh from the tomb to the sun, a
journey also symbolized by the architecture.
Dr. Andrea Vianello, in Cognitive Archaeology as Symbolic
2371-2350 King Unas includes the first known Pyramid Texts
(spells recited during the royal funeral) carved inside his pyramid at
Dr. Edward Bleiberg, Arts & Humanities Through the
Eras: Ancient Egypt 2675-322 B.C.E. 1017

Assman (1996-2002), 89. (Emph. added.)
Andrea Vianello, The Ship and Its Symbolism in European Prehistory, in
Cognitive Archaeology as Symbolic Archaeology, eds. F. Coimbra and G.
Dimitriadis (Oxford: Archaeopress, 2008), 29. (Emph. added.)
Bleiberg (2005), 2. (Emph. added.)
Most believe that the spells are intended to be read from the
antechamber inward, concluding with the burial chamber. This
order is logical if the spells were to be recited by the priests at the
time that the body of the pharaoh was carried into the burial
Dr. Bob Brier, Ancient Egyptian Magic 1018
The day of the burial was traditionally the day the magical spells and
rituals of the tomb were performed. Osiris did not remain in this tomb for
long, however, for the primary objective of these spells was to raise him
(and those later identified with him) from the dead. The texts state that
this occurred on the third day after this burial.
Raise yourself as Osiris the three-day festival is celebrated
for you, you are pure for the New Moon, your appearing is for the
monthly festival.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 437 793-94 1019
Raise yourself, Osiris the King May you be pure at the
monthly festival, may you be manifest at the New Moon, may the
three-day festival be celebrated for you.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 483 1012 1020
O my father Osiris the King Awake, [stand up(?) at yonder]
eastern [side] of the sky at this place [where the gods] are born,
[when there comes this time of tomorrow and this time of the third
day; my father the King] will be born [on] yonder eastern side of
[the sky] where the gods are born, when there comes this time of
tomorrow and this time of the third day.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 556 1382-84 1021
Raise yourself, you eldest son of Geb for whom the three-
day festival is celebrated! May you appear for the monthly festival,
may you be pure for the New Moon festival.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 610 1710-11 1022

Brier (1980-2001), 113.
Faulkner (1969), 144. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 170. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 216. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 253. (Emph. added.)
O King, there comes this time of tomorrow and this time of
three days; a stairway to the sky is [set up] for you among the
Imperishable Stars.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 667 1941 1023
These three days were remembered in ritual, as recorded on the Stela
of Ikhernofret, 19th century BCE. On the day of the Great Procession,
Osiris was buried in his tomb. There he remained through the next day,
the night of the Haker Festival, when Horus finally defeated Seth. And
there Osiris continued to remain on into the following day after that, the
third day of burial- the day on which he was resurrected and brought into
his temple.
The text is of unusual interest because it provides an account,
albeit a veiled one, of the annually performed mysteries of Osiris.
Holding high office under Sesostris III, Ikhernofret was charged
with the organization of the annual festival of the god in which the
statue of Osiris journeyed between his temple and his tomb amid
scenes of combat which reenacted the gods kingship, death, and
Dr. Miriam Lichtheim, Ancient Egyptian Literature Volume I:
The Old and Middle Kingdoms 1024
I acted according to everything His majesty commanded in
making effective what my lord commanded for his father, Osiris-
Foremost-of-the-Westerners, lord of Abydos, the great powerful
one within the Thinite Nome. I performed (the duty of) his
beloved son for Osiris-Foremost-of-the-Westerners, I making
effective (for him?) the great (barque?), eternal and enduring. I
assigned the hourly priests of the temples to carry out their duties
and I had them know the rituals of each day and the festivals of the
beginnings of the year.
Stela of Ikhernofret 10-14 1025

Ibid. 280. (Emph. added.)
Lichtheim (1973-2006), 123. (Emph. added.)
William K. Simpson, The Stela of Iykhernofret, in The Literature of Ancient
Egypt: An Anthology of Stories, Instructions, Stelae, Autobiographies, and
Poetry, ed. W.K. Simpson (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2003), 426.
(Emph. added.)
Ikhernofret mentions the rituals that pertain to each day and
the festivals at the start of the seasons. Each day evidently had its
ritual requirements.
Dr. Martyn Smith, Religion, Culture, and Sacred Space 1026
I conducted the great procession following the god at his
footsteps. I caused the gods barque to sail on, with Thoth leading
the voyage. I cleared the gods paths to his cenotaph tomb in
front of Poqer.
Stela of Ikhernofret 18-20 1027
II. The Great Procession in the Neshmet-barque: What is
described here is the funeral procession of Osiris.
Dr. Jan Assmann, Death and Salvation in Ancient Egypt 1028
I avenged Wen-nofer on that day of the great fighting, and I
felled all his enemies on the sand banks of Nedit.
Stela of Ikhernofret 21 1029
That day of battle alludes to the contending of Horus and
Seth, that part of the festival drama which is called the night of the
battling Horus or the night of the Haker festival in other texts.
In the mortuary cult, this night corresponds to the night of
vindication, when the Judgment of the Dead occurred at the
conclusion of the embalming process. On this night, a wake was
Dr. Assmann, op cit. 1030
I had him proceed within the Great Barque and it carried his
beauty, gladdening the eastern deserts and [creating] joy in the
heart of the western deserts when they saw the beauties of the
neshmet-barque as it put to land at Abydos and as it brought back
[Osiris-Foremost-of-the-Westerners, lord of] Abydos to his palace.
And I followed the god into his temple, his purication done, his
throne widened.
Stela of Ikhernofret 22-24 1031

Martyn Smith, Religion, Culture, and Sacred Space (New York: Palgrave
Macmillan, 2008), 54. (Emph. added.)
Simpson (2003), 427. (Emph. added.)
Assmann (2001-05), 228.
Simpson, loc. cit. (Emph. added.)
Assmann, op. cit. 228-29.
The last act of the festival was the return of the god to the
temple. Just as the procession to U-poqer was celebrated as a
funeral procession and the night spent there as the night of
vindication, so the return was interpreted as a triumphal entry of
the vindicated and resurrected Osiris into his palace.
Assmann, op cit. 1032
A series of processions at Abydos was carried out in proper
order: I conducted the Great Procession, following the god in his
steps in his beautiful regalia he proceeded to the domain of
Peqer I made him enter the Great Barque it brought [Osiris]
to his palace. This ritual sequence, often referred to as the
Mysteries of Osiris, appears to be a form of passion play, re-
enacting the death and rebirth of Osiris in a mythical environment.
Dr. Steven Snape, Ancient Egyptian Tombs: The Culture of
Life and Death 1033
After the chest was buried the death of the god was mourned
for three days and nights. The festival culminated with the
celebration of the resurrection. The pillar of Osiris the ancient
symbol of the harvesters was erected in the temple court to the
jubilant rejoicing of the assembled crowds and the living image of
the resurrected one brought out on a portable boat and displayed.
The Egyptian phrase for a religious festival was gods appearance.
Merriment and dancing concluded the weeklong gathering.
Ikernofret, an official at the court of Senusret III, wrote the earliest
account of the festival.
Dr. Bojana Mojsov, Osiris: Death and Afterlife of a God 1034
An orgy lasting for three days was centered around a funerary
feast to Osiris, who was called The Lord of wine through [or
during] the inundation, a title that had first been applied to this
resurrection and fertility god in the Old Kingdom Pyramid Texts.
Dr. Patrick E. McGovern, Ancient Wine: The Search for the
Origins of Viniculture 1035

Simpson, loc. cit.
Assmann, op. cit. 229. (Emph. added.)
Snape (2011), 129. (Emph. added.)
Mojsov (2005), 51-52. (Emph. added.)
Patrick E. McGovern, Ancient Wine: The Search for the Origins of Viniculture
(Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2003), 135. (Emph. added.)
Further corroborating with this is the fact that Egyptian barley, which
symbolized the body of Osiris,1036 was said to likewise rise from out of
the earth on the third day after being buried- just like Osiris.
Barley in Egypt is said to come up on the third day.
Theophrastus of Eresus, Enquiry into Plants 8.1.6 (4th cen. BCE)
In Egypt leguminous plants emerge on the third day. In barley
one end of the grain sends out a root and the other a blade, which
flowers before the other corn.
Pliny the Elder, Natural History 28.10 (1st cen. CE) 1037
Brilliance for your barley when grain grows, Osiris emerges.
Book of Gates, 7th Hour, Scene 46 (16th-11th cen. BCE) 1038
Osiris is being buried at the time when the grain is sown and
covered in the earth and that he comes to life and reappears when
plants begin to sprout.
Plutarch, Moralia 377B1039
This is quite similar to the holy feasts of The Good Shepherds
religion, especially those which allegedly symbolize his death &
resurrection. His ancestors had a feast celebrating the day they were
passed over by Death, which was also the day on which Mr. Good
Shepherd later died. Then on the third day his ancestors celebrated the
Feast of First-Fruits, in which they reaped their first growth of grain as
an offering to begin the harvest season.
Now at this point it is perhaps necessary to address the likelihood
that some antagonists will attempt to claim that this does not count as
three days since it not a full 72 hours. Such an objection is ignorant of
the method of time measurement known as inclusive reckoning, which
was in heavy use in ancient times, and is still used in certain areas of the
world even today. Inclusive reckoning includes a unit of time in the sum
total so long as any portion of the unit falls within the stretch of time

See pp.274-88.
Pliny the Elder, Natural History, in Pliny: Natural History, Books 17-19,
trans. H. Rackham (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1961), 223. (Emph.
Hornung and Abt (2014), 258-59.
Plutarch, in Babbitt (1936-62), 153.
being measured. Thus an event that overlaps 3 calendar days is counted
as three days, even if the overlap does not include all 24 hours of the first
or last day. By inclusive reckoning, a newborn infant is classified as a 1
year old, since the child is already in the first year of his/her life, even
though it is only the 1st rather than the 365th day of said year. As a matter
of fact, many heathen even believe in stories which likewise use
inclusive reckoning to claim that demigods rose from the dead after three
days, since such demigods were buried on a Friday- day 1, remained
there through Saturday- day 2, and then resurrected on Sunday- day 3.
Inclusive reckoning noun a method of counting in which
both the first and last term is counted by inclusive reckoning,
Easter Sunday is the third day after Good Friday.
Chambers 21st Century Dictionary 1040
There are also stories in heathen folklore in which the inclusive
reckoning method is laid out in unambiguous terms, to the effect of- I
cast out devils, and I do cures to day and to morrow, and the third day I
shall be perfected. Elsewhere are words along the lines of- he hath
smitten, and he will bind us up. After two days will he revive us: in the
third day he will raise us up, and we shall live in his sight. In the same
manner, the holy scriptures of ancient Kemet used such unambiguous
language to indicate inclusive reckoning, and did so much earlier than
the aforementioned heathen stories.
Come and pass the day in happiness,
Tomorrow, and the day after tomorrow,
Even for three days, sitting beneath my shade.
The Turin Love Songs: Songs of the Orchard 1041
So today + tomorrow + the day after = three days. The afore-
cited Pyramid Texts were just as clear, explicitly stating this time of
tomorrow and this time of the third day. To bring this point to a close,

Chambers 21st Century Dictionary, eds. M. Robinson and G. Davidson et al
(London: Chambers Harrap Publishers Ltd., 1996-2008), 684.
Vincent A. Tobin, Love Songs and the Songs of the Harper, in The
Literature of Ancient Egypt: An Anthology of Stories, Instructions, Stelae,
Autobiographies, and Poetry, ed. W.K. Simpson (New Haven: Yale University
Press, 2003), 322. (Emph. added.)
the ancient usage of inclusive reckoning can also be seen in the following
scholarly examples.
26 Post diem tertium: 17 March (see Phil. 1.1. die n.), which
was the third day after the murder of Caesar on the 15th by
inclusive reckoning, two days later in our parlance.
Dr. John T. Ramsey, Cicero: Philippics I-II 1042
I think its pretty remarkable that so many men of such
intelligence, after so many years, still cant make up their minds
whether to say on the third day* or the day after tomorrow
*The Romans used inclusive reckoning; we would say on the
second day.
Cicero and Dr. James E.G. Zetzel, in Cicero: Ten Speeches 1043
Celsus draws attention to the use of inclusive reckoning
when he states that the 11th day is not the fourth but the fifth after
the 7th .
Dr. William F. Richardson, Numbering and Measuring in the
Classical World: An Introductory Handbook 1044
By the system of inclusive reckoning, when one states two
years ago one means, in effect, last year.
Dr. Tim G. Parkin, Old Age in the Roman World: A Cultural
and Social History 1045

The Moon shall be Darkened

The fact of the three days of burial preceding the resurrection is yet
another event for which the Lord God has given a natural metaphor in
the heavens. Recall how on pp.247-58, it was established that Osiris was

John T. Ramsey, Cicero: Philippics I-II (Cambridge: Cambridge University
Press, 2003), 291. (Emph. added.)
Cicero, Pro Murena 28, in Cicero: Ten Speeches, trans. J.E.G. Zetzel
(Indianapolis: Hackett Publishing Company, Inc., 2009), 138, n.37. (Emph.
William F. Richardson, Numbering and Measuring in the Classical World: An
Introductory Handbook (Auckland: St. Leonards Publications, 1985), 11.
Tim G. Parkin, Old Age in the Roman World: A Cultural and Social History
(Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2003), 28.
foremost of the lunar gods of Egypt. The moon, the night-time sun,1046
was one of his bA manifestations. Thus many attributes of the moon
parallel events in the life of Osiris, perennially preaching his gospel
story in the skies. Just as Osiris was buried in the darkness of his tomb
and was not seen for three days, so too the moon is buried in darkness
and is not seen by the naked eye for three nights during the transition
from old moon to new moon.
When the moon first appears on the third day, it becomes
visible as full moon on the sixteenth. It wanes the remaining time
(of the month) during 13 days.
Heraclitus of Ephesus, Commentary on Odyssey XX,
Oxyrhynchus Papyrus 3710 col. iii, 7-11 (6th-5th cen. BCE) 1047
It indicates fair weather if the outline of the moon on the third
day is bright.
Theophrastus of Eresus, On Weather Signs 51 (4th cen. BCE) 1048
From them thou canst learn touching the month that is begun.
If she is slender and clear about the third day, she heralds calm: if
slender and very ruddy, wind; but if thick and with blunted horns
she show but a feeble light on the third and fourth night, her beams
are blunted by the South wind or imminent rain. If on the third
night neither horn nod forward or lean backward, if vertical they
curve their tips on either side, winds from the West will follow that
night. The signs of the half Moon are followed by those of the
fourth day from the end of the waning month, and they in their
turn by those of the third day of the new month.
Aratus of Soli, Phaenomena 780-810 (3rd cen. BCE)1049
Numerous reports trace the day on which the moon
disappears (UD.N.A, m bubbuli). According to SAA VII 346,

Ulmer (2009), 277.
Andrei V. Lebedev, The Logos of Heraclitus: a Reconstruction of his Thought
and Word (St. Petersburg: Nauka Publishers, 2014), 31. (Emph. added.)
Theophrastus of Eresus, On Weather Signs 51, in Theophrastus: Enquiry Into
Plants and Minor Works on Odours and Weather Signs, Vol. II, trans. A. Hort
(London: William Heinemann, 1916), 427. (Emph. added.)
Lycophron, Alexandria, in Callimachus, Lycophron, Aratus, trans. A.W. Mair
(London: William Heinemann, 1921), 441-43. (Emph. added.)
the moon ideally vanishes on day 27 and remains covered for a
maximum period of three days.
Dr. Jonathan Ben-Dov, Head of All Years: Astronomy and
Calendars at Qumran in Their Ancient Context 1050
The Sun is always the same, but the Moons appearance to us
on Earth changes waxing, waning, disappearing, then returning
after three nights.
Hamish Lindsay, Tracking Apollo to the Moon 1051
The Moon then disappears for about three days, lost in the
light of the Sun at the new moon.
Robin Heath, Sun, Moon, & Earth 1052
The Moon is in turn a symbol of death and resurrection, the
eternal recurrence. The Moon remains the high symbol of the
dead and resurrecting god three days in the tomb, just as the
Moon is three days dark.
Joseph Campbell, Myths of Light: Eastern Metaphors of the
Eternal 1053
Observation of the four pillars on mountain Picchu enabled
the Incas to define the day when the sun sets in the anti-Zenith
position and a monthlong period around the date of August 18.
With this observation they fixed within the solar year a synodic
lunar year of twelve months counted from June 6, starting with
three days of invisible moon.
Dr. R. Tom Zuidema, in Archaeoatronomy in the New
World: American 1054

Jonathan Ben-Dov, Head of All Years: Astronomy and Calendars at Qumran
in Their Ancient Context (Leiden: Koninklijke Brill NV, 2008), 179.
Hamish Lindsay, Tracking Apollo to the Moon (London: Springer-Verlag
London Limited, 2001), 1.
Robin Heath, Sun, Moon, & Earth (Markham: Fitzhenry and Whitside, 1999-
2001), 14.
Joseph Campbell, Myths of Light: Eastern Metaphors of the Eternal (Novato:
New World Library, 2003), 16.
R. Tom Zuidema, The Sidereal Lunar Calendar of the Incas, in
Archaeoatronomy in the New World: American Primitive Astronomy, ed. by A.F.
Aveni (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1982-2009), 103. (Emph.
The Yolngu people call the Moon Ngalindi and he too travels
across the sky. Originally, he was a fat lazy man (corresponding to
the full Moon) for which he was punished by his wives, who
chopped bits off him with their axes, producing the waning Moon.
He managed to escape by climbing a tall tree to follow the Sun, but
was mortally wounded, and died (the new Moon). After remaining
dead for 3 days, he rose again, growing round and fat (the waxing
Moon), until, after two weeks his wives attacked him again. The
cycle continues to repeat every month. Until Ngalindi first died,
everyone on Earth was immortal, but he cursed humans and
animals so that only he could return to life. For everyone else,
death would thereafter be final.
The Arnhem Land stories go much further, even explaining
why the Moon is associated with tides. When the tides are high,
water fills the Moon as it rises. As the water runs out of the Moon,
the tides fall, leaving the Moon empty for three days. Then the tide
rises once more, refilling the Moon. So, although the mechanics
are a little different from our modern version, the Yolngu people
obviously had an excellent understanding of the motions of the
Moon, and its relationship to the tides.
Dr. Ray P. Norris, in Astronomy and Cosmology in Folk
Traditions and Cultural Heritage 1055
May I renew my youth like the moon.
Inscription of the Statue of Montemhet from Karnak 11 (7th
cen. BCE) 1056
Hence the Pyramid Texts state, as quoted earlier- Raise yourself,
Osiris the King may you be manifest at the New Moon, may the
three-day festival be celebrated for you. Because of this feature of the
moon, it became a universal symbol for resurrection/rebirth/renewal.
Through his identity as the moon, even the heathen have unwittingly
acknowledged Osiris resurrection from the dead.
If you wish to behold a still more marvelous sight, taking place
to provide proof of resurrection not only from matters on earth but
also from those in heaven, consider the monthly resurrection of the
moon, how it wanes, dies, and rises again.

Ray P. Norris, Searching for the Astronomy of Aboriginal Australians, in
Astronomy and Cosmology in Folk Traditions and Cultural Heritage, ed. J.
Vaiknas (Klaipda: Klaipda University Press, 2009), 248. (Emph. added.)
Lichtheim (1980-2006), 31. (Emph. added.)
Theophilus of Antioch, Ad Autolycum 1.13 1057
Readorned also are the mirrors of the moon, which her
monthly course had worn away. The whole, therefore, of this
revolving order of things bears witness to the resurrection of the
Tertullian of Carthage, De Resurrectione Carnis XII 1058
Take further a manifest proof of the resurrection of the dead,
witnessed month by month in the sky and its luminaries. The body
of the moon vanishes completely, so that no part of it is any more
seen, yet it fills again, and is restored to its former state; and for the
perfect demonstration of the matter, the moon at certain
revolutions of years suffering eclipse and becoming manifestly
changed into blood, yet recovers its luminous body: God having
provided this, that thou also, the man who art formed of blood,
mightest not refuse credence to the resurrection of the dead, but
mightest believe concerning thyself also what thou seest in respect
of the moon.
Cyril of Jerusalem, Lecture XVIII.10 1059

They knew not the Scripture, that He must Rise Again from the

Just as the moon comes back from the dead, so too did Osiris. The
moon does not stay dead. It does not go away permanently never to
return again. It does not discard its former body and merely continue on
as some incorporeal ghost. And neither did Osiris, yet the heathen would
have us all believe just the opposite. Of all the tenets of the Perennial
Gospel, none do they oppose more vehemently than the most important
tenet of them all- the resurrection.

Theophilus of Antioch, Ad Autolycum, trans. R.M. Grant (Oxford: Clarendon
Press, 1970), 1.13.
Tertullian of Carthage, De Resurrectione Carnis, in The Ante-Nicene Fathers:
Volume III, eds. A. Roberts and J. Donaldson, trans. P. Holmes (Peabody:
Hendrickson Publishers, 1885-1994), 553.
Cyril of Jerusalem, Catechetical Lectures, in Nicene & Post-Nicene Fathers,
2nd Series: Volume VII, eds. P. Schaff and H. Wace, trans. E.H. Gifford
(Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1894-1996), 136.
It was covered in the previous chapter how some heathen try to
undermine the fact of Osiris resurrection from the dead by attempting
(and failing) to argue that Osiris never truly died, as though without a
real death there can be no resurrection. Once that ridiculous argument
fails themas it inevitably always willsome antagonists shift gears
and argue instead that while Osiris did die, every bit as much as mortal
humans die, he also stayed dead like mortal humans do too. They claim
he was not a resurrected god, just a dead god- an outdated notion that
only persists by repeating the errors of obsolete 19th century literature
(sadly a problem that even plagues some scholars of today). But as Dr.
Jan Assmann explicitly states- he is not dead.1060 Dr. John G. Griffiths
likewise explains:
Osiris was certainly identified with the dead Pharaoh; but it
does not follow that he himself was a dead king. 1061
Indeed, Osiris did not remain a dead god. It was even covered in
the previous chapter how the occurrence of the death of Osiris was a
closely guarded secret not to be mentioned, and that the power of death
was to be explicitly denied in word and deed in order to bring about
resurrection. The scriptures state in no ambiguous terms that Osiris most
indubitably did resurrect from the dead back to life. Few other things in
all of scripture are more widely attested.
The king is identified with Osiris
O Atum, this one here is your son Osiris whom you have
caused to be restored that he may live. If he lives, this King will live;
if he does not die, this King will not die; if he is not destroyed, this
King will not be destroyed.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 219 167 1062
O Osiris the King, arise, lift yourself up!
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 366 626 1063
O Osiris the King Horus will not let you perish, for Horus
has set your foe under your feet for you; may you live.

Assmann (2001-05), 66. (Emph. added.)
Griffiths (1980), 4. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1969), 46.
Ibid. 120. (Emph. added.)
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 368 636-37 1064
O Osiris the King, awake!
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 372 651 1065
O Nut, cause the King to be restored, that he may live.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 444 824 1066
O Nut, if you live, then the King will live.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 445 824 1067
As just seen, Osiris is every bit as much alive as Nut is alive. He is
no more a dead god than Nut is a dead goddess, which she isnt.
The king is restored to life Stand up! Raise yourself!
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 459 867 1068
A resurrection text
O King, mighty in waking and great in sleeping, for whom
sweetness is sweet, raise yourself, O King, for you have not died.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 462 875 1069
A resurrection text
Raise yourself, Osiris the King, you first-born son of Geb, at
whom the Great Ennead tremble!
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 483 1012 1070
An Osirian text adapted for the king
If he lives among the living, then will Sokar live among the
living; if he lives among the living, then will the King live among the
living. O King, come, live your life here from season to season in
these years when you are content and your desire is at ease.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 535 1290 1071

Ibid. 121. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 123.
Ibid. 148. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 153.
Ibid. 154.
Ibid. 170.
O my father Osiris the King, raise yourself up to me. O Osiris
the king, betake yourself to me.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 547 1342 1072
May you live for me, O King, for ever!
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 552 1352 1073
A resurrection text
O my father Osiris the King, to 1m and 4mt, that they may
ferry my father the King. Awake, [stand up(?) at yonder] eastern
[side] of the sky at this place [where the gods] are born.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 556 1382 1074
Osiris and the king are associated
Possessing life; you live because the gods have ordered that
you shall live.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 577 1528 1075
The king is summoned to rise
I am Horus, O Osiris the King, I will not let you suffer. Go
forth, wake up for me and guard yourself!
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 620 1753 1076
The dead king is summoned to rise again
Wake up, wake, O King, wake up for me! I am your son; wake
up for me, for I am Horus who wakes you. Live, be alive.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 665 1898-99 1077
O Osiris the King, you have gone, but you will return, you
have slept, [but you will awake], you have died, but you will live.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 670 1975-77 1078

Ibid. 204. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 211.
Ibid. 212.
Ibid. 215-16.
Ibid. 233.
Ibid. 257.
Ibid. 274.
Ibid. 285. (Emph. added.)
Die and live are contrasted against each other here, so they are
clearly not the same state, thus Osiris does not remain dead.
A resurrection text
O King, you have your soul with you [...] as Osiris. O King,
live, for you are not dead.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 703 2201 1079
Raise yourself, that you may be vindicated against your foes.
Coffin Texts, Spell 2 I, 8-9 1080
As for anyone who shall commit any evil robbery against N, N
will use an arm upward and downward against their great ones in
On in the presence of the risen Osiris.
Coffin Texts, Spell 16-17 I, 53 1081
O Osiris, Bull of the Great Ones, controller of the living,
behold N has come to you.
Coffin Texts, Spell 36 I, 135 1082
You have departed living, you have not departed dead. You
have appeared as Lord of the West, having ruled the Egyptians
who are on earth. Rise up to life, for you have not died. I am
your son Horus, and I enclose you within the arms of your mother
Nutmay you live for ever!
Coffin Texts, Spell 44 I, 187, 189-90 1083
You have appeared as Lord of the West Raise yourself to
life for ever!
Coffin Texts, Spell 47 I, 205, 211 1084
Thus said Anubis to Osiris: Awake to life, observe your
accession, and execute sentence on him who harmed you.
Coffin Texts, Spell 49 I, 221 1085
You shall have life, O Lord of the West, you son of Harakhti,
Bull of his mother Nut. Awake to life, for you have not died!

Ibid. 306.
Faulkner (1973), 1.
Ibid. 10. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 25. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 36-37, n.11.
Ibid. 42-43.
Ibid. 46.
Coffin Texts, Spell 51 I, 237 1086
O my lord, [stand up] to life; behold, the earth is bright.
Coffin Texts, Spell 58 I, 247 1087
O my father Osiris, raise yourself.
Coffin Texts, Spell 72 I, 298 1088
O Osiris, live, O Osiris!
Coffin Texts, Spell 74 I, 307 1089
It is this grain-god who lives after death.
Coffin Texts, Spell 101 II, 100 1090
Going forth into the day and living after death. O you Sole
One who rises in the moon.
Coffin Texts, Spell 152 II, 260, 265 1091
Coffin Texts, Spell 156 II, 312 1092
Since the dead are already dead and thus cannot die again, for one to
prevent dying another time one must by default not be dead currently.
Also, the fact that a magical spell must here be invoked in order to
prevent any more deaths in the future once again proves the point made
in the previous chapter, which is that the gods are not innately immortal
but instead must become immortal through magic. This is also seen in
spells such as 402 & 423:
Not dying again and giving a mans magic to him.1093 NOT

Ibid. 50.
Ibid. 54.
Ibid. 67.
Ibid. 69.
Ibid. 99.
Ibid. 131.
Ibid. 134. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1977), 46. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 69. (Emph. added.)
The north-wind east-wind west-wind south-wind is the
breath of life, and what it has granted to me is that I may live by
means of it.
Coffin Texts, Spell 162 II, 391-98 1095
I have gone forth from Sehel exercising authority over the two
she-asses of Shu I eat life, I live by air, I live again hereafter.
Coffin Texts, Spell 173 III, 52, 57 1096
So it seems there was a triumphant ride upon two asses after the
triumph over death.
I spend eternity alive Raise me up [] live for ever, because
I am one powerful of speech who came forth from Geb.
Coffin Texts, Spell 238 III, 319 1097
NOT DYING AGAIN. O you great living one who are
detained on your staff, throw out the bow-warps of the
Coffin Texts, Spell 267 III, 397 1098
O you who hate sleep but who were made limp, arise, O you
who were in Nedit! 1099
Coffin Texts, Spell 349 IV, 383-84 1100
I am one beloved of my father, whom my father greatly loves. I
am he who awoke my sleeping father.
Coffin Texts, Spell 397 V, 79 1101
Lion, older than Atum, having received the throne of the West I
live again after death daily like Atum. May I be one alive among
those who have died again; I come into being as Re, 1102 and I live
after death.

Faulkner (1973), 140.
Ibid. 148-49. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 188.
Ibid. 203. (Emph. added.)
See pp.204, n.608, 206, n.624, 349, n.1029, 462 n.1374, 478-81.
Faulkner, op. cit. 283. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1977), 24, n.6.
See pp.121-27.
Coffin Texts, Spell 438 V, 290-91 1103
My dissolution was caused yesterday, I have returned today
I died yesterday, I raised myself today, I returned today.
Coffin Texts, Spell 513 VI, 98, 100 1104
May you breathe and exchange greetings; raise yourself, O my
father Osiris.
Coffin Texts, Spell 603 1105
[O Osiris], make me hale even as you make yourself hale;
may you release, may you loose me.
Coffin Texts, Spell 691 VI, 322 1106
Rise up, Osiris Live, Osiris!
Coffin Texts, Spell 837 VII, 37-38 1107
Stand up, Osiris, living for ever and ever!
Coffin Texts, Spell 839 VII, 45 1108
You being renewed and young in this your name of Fresh
Water, you being raised up on this happy day in which you
appeared in glory. Your mother Nut comes to you in it with your
sister Nephthys.
Coffin Texts, Spell 840 VII, 45 1109
NOT TO DIE AGAIN. O you living one who are in the
horizon, O Osiris!
Coffin Texts, Spell 920 VII, 125 1110
I have restored Osiris to health.
Coffin Texts, Spell 1036 VII, 284; 1073 VII, 343 1111
I have come that I may remove the humiliation from upon

Ibid. 76.
Ibid. 145.
Ibid. 194.
Ibid. 256. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1978), 24.
Ibid. 28.
Ibid. 29. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 64. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 132, 146.
Coffin Texts, Spell 1075 VII, 346; 1184 VII, 521 1112
Rise up that you may live.
Coffin Texts, Spell 1123 VII, 454 1113
It was I who restored Osiris to health
Coffin Texts, Spell 1147 VII, 498 1114
I will restore Osiris to health I am he who saved Osiris.
Coffin Texts, Spell 1183 VII, 520 1115
I have come that I may drive out pain, ease the suffering of
Osiris, and establish offerings in Abydos.
Coffin Texts, Spell 1185 VII, 521 1116
I am risen as King of the gods; I shall not die again.
Book of the Dead, Spell 44 b S 1117
Book of the Dead, Spell 46 P 1 1118
Behold, I am come unto thee risen.
Book of the Dead, Spell 105 S 1 1119
O Osiris, I have come unto thee; I am (thy son) Horus. (I)
have saved thee alive on this day Pray raise thyself, Osiris.
Book of the Dead, Spell 128 b S 1 1120
Raise thyself, that thou mayest become mighty, Osiris, in
Book of the Dead, Spell 147 a S 2 1121

Ibid. 146, 189.
Ibid. 165.
Ibid. 180.
Ibid. 189.
T.G. Allen (1974), 50.
Ibid. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 84.
Ibid. 104.
Ibid. 137.
To be said by Nephthys: I have encircled my brother Osiris; I
have come that I may be thy magical protection. (Thou) hast
been vindicated by the gods; raise thyself.
Book of the Dead, Spell 151 c P, S 1-2 1122
Spell for a headrest (to be put under the head of Osiris N.).
Doves awake thee from sleep Raise thyself, (for) thou dost
triumph over what was done against thee.
Book of the Dead, Spell 166 P, S 1-2 1123
[I am] Nut. Rise, Osiris N. Thou art the Son of Geb, first
(son) of his father.
Book of the Dead, Spell 168 B MMA 35.9.19 a S 3 1124
O Nut, raise me (who am) Osiris N.
Book of the Dead, Spell 168 B c S 1 1125
Thy face is (toward the sky), Unnofer. Raise thyself, bull of the
west. Osiris has endured as a living one.
Book of the Dead, Spell 182 c 2-4 1126
O Osiris N., raise thyself.
Book of the Dead, Spell Pleyte 167 e S 1 1127
Raise thyself, awake, Osiris lord of life.
Book of the Dead, Spell Pleyte 168 S 13 & 27 1128

Bring up Flesh upon You, and Cover You with Skin, and Put Breath
in You, and Ye shall Live

The scriptural fact of the resurrection of Osiris from death to life is

irrefutable. Yet in spite of the overwhelming amount of primary sources
(of which the previous eight pages worth are but an infinitesimal
sample), and in spite of how undeniably clear they all are, there are still

Ibid. 148. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 162.
Ibid. 169. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 173.
Ibid. 197.
Ibid. 217.
Ibid. 218. (Emph. added.)
many people who are ignorant enough and/or obstinate enough to try and
deny the resurrection anyway. The most common approach to attempt
such denial is to treat the afore-cited texts with hand-wave dismissals,
sometimes even rolling their eyes, and retorting to the effect of: Yeah,
yeah, yeah, we all know there were such texts that said things like that,
which sound similar to resurrection. But thats really not resurrection at
all, because what were talking about is physical resurrection of the
body! And there is absolutely nothing whatsoever in any of those quoted
passages which indicate that Osiris physical body, the exact same body
which had died, came back to life in the exact same way it was before it
had died! Such persons are merely following in the erroneous footsteps
of the likes of Bart Ehrman, Jonathan Z. Smith, Gary Habermas, and
many an outdated 19th century author whose legacy of ignorance lives
on in the ever dwindling number of publications that naively continue to
parrot them rather than look to the more updated data within the field of
Egyptology, and even more importantly, to the unambiguous words of
the primary sources. The errors of these antagonists and those they are
parroting extend from two major problems which will each be dealt with
in greater detail in the following order.
1. First & foremost, the biggest & most common mistake lay persons
and certain scholars not specializing in Osirian religion make is the
assumption that the Egyptians even believed in a spirit or a soul. They
did not. They didn't even believe in any parallel concepts. The terms
often translated by outdated scholarship as spirit and soul are
actually uniquely Egyptian concepts (bA, kA, Ax/akh) that
do not correspond to the functions of our concept of a soul or spirit. The
ancient Egyptians did not even have the concept of a body-soul or
corporeal-incorporeal dichotomy. They were entirely monistic in their
conception of man and his existence. The Western Greco-Roman concept
of the spirit & soul were anachronized backwards onto indigenous
Egyptian culture by foreign civilizations who conquered Egypt after
its Late Period era, a bit of Egyptosophy if you will (to borrow a
phrase from Dr. Erik Hornung). Hence any continued life after death for
an ancient Egyptian would by default be physical, bodily life, for they
could conceive of no other mode of existence for man.
2. The second problem is, quite frankly, just flat out ignorance of the
indigenous Egyptian primary source texts (and of their operation under

the concept of sympathetic magic1129). Most people who likewise commit
the errors of these aforementioned apologists rely exclusively on the
interpretation of much later foreign sources outside of Egypt such as
Greek and Roman writers of Antiquity, without cross referencing them
with authentic ancient Egyptian sources to cut away the dross. On the
one hand, I can cut them a little bit of slack because the corpus of ancient
Egyptian literature is so overwhelmingly vast that no mortal could
possibly be familiar with all of it. But on the other hand, the resurrection
of Osiris is arguably the most widely attested mythological/religious
motif within ancient Egyptian literature. (As Herodotus observed, only
the gods Isis and Osiris are worshiped in the same manner by all
Egyptians.1130) The wording in the primary sources leave absolutely no
ambiguity or room for interpretation, they are utterly explicit in their
portrayal of the resurrection of Osiris, and of those deceased who
emulated him, as a bodily, physical, corporeal resurrection of the same
body that died & began to decompose, a resurrection which occurred in
their tombs here on earth in the world of the living, and which was
followed by a transfiguration & ascension into heaven.

I Shall Give Up the Ghost

Fig. 120

See pp.23-26, 222.
Herodotus, in Strassler (2009), 136.
So first things first, when approaching the subject of ancient
Egyptian Osirian/funerary lore, you have to give up the ghost- the
concept of it, that is. They didn't have it. No doubt a few of you will run
to the stacks of books or Google snippets of past scholars & translations
throwing around such English terms as spirit, soul, ghost,
spiritual, etc, when writing about ancient Egypt. But such terms are
misnomers in that context, misnomers popularized by 18th & 19th
century scholars who had an inferior understanding of ancient Egypt than
we do today (their field was still in its infancy) and had the bias of
viewing things through their filter of Western, Romanized thinking.
Folks who continue employing such misnomers are keeping company
with long since discarded & debunked authors such as E.A. Wallis
Budge or Gerald Massey, etc. While there were a handful of scholars
from that era who already began to see the problems with using such
terms for ancient Egyptian thought, the tide really began to turn with the
monumental work of the late great Dr. Louis V. abkar titled A Study of
the Ba Concept in Ancient Egyptian Texts, dealing especially with the
most abused Egyptian term concerning this subject- the bA.
It appears that both Spiegel and Fairman consider Unas burial
ritual as a resurrection ritual. Spiegel often speaks of the
resurrection of the soul, but on closer inspection it becomes
evident that by that term he means the coming-forth of the soul
from the grave. It seems to us that he should have used
the latter term throughout his description and avoided the
expression resurrection of the soul. First of all, the soul
or, more correctly, the Ba never died, and without death there can
be no resurrection. But there is another problem here. The
Pyramid Texts state emphatically that the king never died: (Unas)
did not die, he departed alive. Unas certainly died, but to the
Egyptian mythopoeic mind his death was but a transition to a new
life: Thou sleepest, thou awakest; thou diest, thou livest. This is
the idea that lies behind the statement: Atum, that son of yours is
this here, Osiris ... he lives and this Unas lives; he did not die, and
this Unas did not die. Spiegel understands these words as being
addressed to the Ba of the king, but the Ba is not mentioned at all.
The comparison is between the dead king and Osiris. Just
as Osiris was killed and rose to new life, so the dead king, identified
with Osiris, through the recitation of the spell is made alive again.

In other words, what we have here is the bodily resurrection of the
dead king and not the resurrection of his Ba, which never died.1131
Here I must interrupt and say it astounds me when I not only see
people deny that last statement by Dr. abkar there, that what we have
here is bodily resurrection, but I've even seen attempts to quote this very
work of abkar to support such a denial! E.g. one Edwin Yamauchi, who
cited abkar in support of his statement that the Egyptians did not
believe in a bodily resurrection from the dead.1132 Wow, that could only
be done by someone has not read abkar's book here (which apparently
would also include our apologist friends as well). Anyway, continuing
where we left off, with Dr. abkar stating the exact opposite of
Yamauchi or our apologist pals:
In other words, what we have here is the bodily resurrection of
the dead king and not the resurrection of his Ba, which never died.
To be sure, the body was in the grave, but it did not remain there
inert or inanimate; special spells were recited to call it back to life:
His limbs which were in the secret place when he joined those
who are in Nun are (now) united; he spoke his last words in
Heliopolis. Unas comes forth on this day in the real form of a
living Akh in order that he may break up the fight and punish the
quarrel. Unas comes forth as a guardian of Maat; he brings her, as
she is in his possession. The same idea of bodily resurrection lies
behind another statement: Thy body is the body of this Unas,
thy flesh is the flesh of this Unas, thy bones are the bones of this
Unas; thou goest and this Unas goes, thus Unas goes and thou
goest. This passage refers to Osiris, with whom the pharaoh is
identified, as Sethe observed. Through the recitation of these spells
and the effectiveness of the ritual, Unas becomes alive in his
true physical corporeality. Only as such can he be transformed
into a Ba or an Akh, traverse the earth and the heaven, find his
place among the stars, and be in command of other glorified dead

abkar (1968), 81-82. (Emph. added.)
Edwin M. Yamauchi, Life, Death, and the Afterlife in the Ancient Near
East, in Life in the Face of Death: the Resurrection Message of the New
Testament, ed. R.N. Longenecker (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing
Co., 1998), 27.
abkar (1968), 82. (Emph. added.)
So what we see here is that it is the physical body which must be
resurrected, and after such corporeal resurrection that same body is
transformed into a bA and Ax. BA and Ax therefore are not one's soul and
spirit, they are forms the body changes into after it has been
resurrected. They do not represent immaterial disembodied vehicles of
consciousness, they are not incorporeal ghosts, they are physical states of
ones physical body which give that body new physical powers. As shall
be demonstrated later, they are a transfiguration & shape-shifting of
one's body. In Egyptian thought, your bA is you, not a part of you, it
is you. Your bA is your alter ego, so to speak, not your soul.
It is also amusing here that Dr. abkar yet again directly contradicted
the aforementioned fellow who cited him when that fellow also wrote in
that same place that the persons corpse remained in the tomb. abkar
had stated that the corpse did not remain there in the grave and that
once resurrected & transformed, it could traverse the earth and the
heaven. Anyway, continuing:
With this idea of bodily resurrection we reach perhaps the
most ancient stratum of the Egyptian conception of the afterlife,
that is, a continuation of life as a physical corporeality - a
conception common to other religions at the earliest stage of their
belief in survival. Certainly long before the period of the Pyramid
Texts speculative theologians first attempted to elaborate this
primitive belief in bodily survival by differentiating more precisely
between various forms of existence in the hereafter: an
effective body, an Akh, a Ba as well as other transformations the
deceased could undergo. The Akh (belongs) to heaven, the corpse
(belongs) to the earth is an emphatic statement indicating an
advanced stage of this differentiation. It is to be remembered,
however, that at all stages the body of the deceased was
considered not as inert and lifeless matter but as a living entity
which, with all its physical and psychic faculties, fully lived in all
other forms of transformation and without the effective role of
which no continuation of life could be conceived. Truly, then, the
Egyptian concept of man in his afterlife knew nothing of his
spiritual constituents as opposed to his physical ones.1134
So again, no dichotomy of physical/spiritual, thus a resurrection
could only ever be a bodily resurrection. Continuing in that line of
thought, abkar wrote:

Ibid. 82-83. (Emph. added.)
The corpse (At) is just as alive and active as the Ba, the
Shadow, the Ka, etc. The texts repeatedly promise that the
deceased will have power over his entire body, especially over
his legs, in order that he may achieve fullness of movement and
life. Not only the body but also the Ba and cognate entities (Ka,
Akh, Shadow) are endowed with physical vitality: Thou (i.e.,
Anubis) hast caused my Ba, my Shadow, and my form to go with
their feet to the place wherein that man is (CT V 242 d to 243 a).
The fact that in each of these forms (body or corpse, Ba, Ka, Akh,
Shadow) the deceased acts and lives as a full individual points to
a monistic concept of man as opposed to the idea, traditionally
attributed to the Egyptians, of a man as a composite of a material
and a spiritual element. Even though the Ka and some of these
other entities coexisted with the individual during his lifetime, they
were, each one of them, considered to
be full physical entities and not spiritual components of a human
So even the other concepts such as kA are physical forms, unlike
the traditional Greco-Roman notion of spirit & soul, but we'll circle back
around to that later on. Anyway, elsewhere abkar added:
Man is not a composite of the body and soul, and
death does not mean a separation of the soul from the body. Here
Herodotus, like some early and late Egyptologists, falls
into error. References have often been made to a number of
Egyptian texts to prove the dualistic concept of man in ancient
Egypt, and to distinguish between the spiritual and material or
physical elements in man. Akh to heaven, corpse to the earth, a
spell to remove the ba from the corpse, the expression heaven
to thy ba, the underworld to thy corpse occurring in its many
versions in the New Kingdom tombs, and the wish that the ba may
not depart from the body but reach the corpse or rest upon it,-
these are the favorite examples of those who propound the dualistic
interpretation of Egyptian mortuary texts. We take a definite
exception to such an understanding of Egyptian religious texts. As a
closer study of Spell 94 as well as the other Coffin Texts will reveal,
the expression to remove the ba from the corpse means to make
it emanate from the corpse, to make it come into existence, and
represents one of the several answers which speculative theologians
gave to the question of the origin of the ba. The Egyptian scribe or
theologian himself interpreted the first part of the title of Spell 94
by saying that it was just another book or version of coming forth

Ibid. 97. (Emph. added.)
by day, a technical term which in the Coffin Texts and the Book
of the Dead signifies unlimited freedom of movement and action
performed interchangeably by the individual dead or his ba.1136
Take note here that a bA comes into existence by emanating from the
corpse, i.e. the bA is actually a form of, and thus a part of, the biological
body. The bA is the deceased himself- it is his alter ego (see abkar et al.
below). In terms of modern culture, the bA of Clark Kent is Superman,
the bA of Bruce Banner is the Hulk, etc. This will come up again a little
later. Continuing:
The expression akh or ba to heaven, corpse to the
underworld does not stress the dualistic view of man either. As an
akh the deceased may belong to heaven; as a ba to heaven, this
earth, and even, though rarely, to the underworld; as a corpse he
belongs to the underworld. But the heaven is not the only abode of
the ba or akh. We read in the Spell 163, vs. 7 of the Book of the
Dead that heaven holds his (scil. Osiris) ba, the earth his form,
while vs. 3 of the same spell tells us that his ba rests within his
corpse. Numerous tomb inscriptions and vignettes of the Book of
the Dead represent the ba alighting on the branches of the trees
and enjoying the amenities of a cool pool in a garden, while the
stelas of all periods implore that the ba may come forth by day to
see the sun, follow the sun-god on his journey across the sky, alight
upon the corpse, go in and come out in the underworld. Thus the
expression the ba to heaven does not indicate that the ba as the
spiritual element goes to heaven as the permanent abode of the
soul upon the separation from the body, but merely reveals an
aspiration on the part of the deceased that his ba may enjoy
unlimited freedom of movement in the sky in the company of the
sun-god- an action for which it is, in its quality of a ba-bird, perfectly
fit. Furthermore, the deceased is just as living and active in
his corpse as he is in his ba, ka, shadow, and other manifestations
in which he may appear.1137
Returning to the previous work:
The Ba is not a soul, neither an internal nor an external one.
There is no internal dualism in man, opposing the spiritual element
to the material, and consequently there is no internal soul. The Ba
does not exist as a separate external entity during the life of an

Louis V. abkar, Herodotus and the Egyptian Idea of Immortality, Journal
of Near Eastern Studies 22, no. 1 (1963): 60-61. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 61. (Emph. added.)
individual, for is it a spiritual entity after his death, and there it is
not an external soul.
The dualistic view that man is constituted of two distinct elements,
in the sense of the Orphic, Platonic, Gnostic, and Scholastic
philosophies, is alien to the Egyptian concept of man. Though the
ancient Egyptian was thought to live after death in a multiplicity of
forms, each of these forms was the full man himself. For this
reason we consider the Egyptian concept of man to
be monistic. Thus the Ba is not a part nor an element of a man but
is one of the forms in which he fully lives after death; the Ba is the
man himself, his personified alter ego.1138
Ultimately, Dr. abkar concluded:
The dead lives a full life as a ba, ka, akh-or any other form he
may wish to assume- just as he does as a living body, capable
of all physical functions in a glorified and blessed existence. This is
what we call a monistic concept of man, specific to the Egyptian
doctrine of the after-life, and its corollary is, that the Egyptian
notion of paradise or hell knew nothing of the disembodied
spirit of a man. It is impossible to identify the ba, ka, or akh with
the spiritual element, in opposition to the body as its material or
physical element. The Egyptian concept of man knows no such
distinction. Not only are these terms not described in the texts as
spiritual elements, but in the Coffin Texts and elsewhere we see
them performing certain functions typical
of physical and not spiritual agents. To translate the ba or any of
the words here discussed as soul, or to speak of multiple
souls would be a matter of grave inaccuracy and misconception; it
would mean reading into the Egyptian concept of man notions
which were foreign to it. If we carefully read the transformation-
spells we will notice that they do not speak of the soul which at the
death leaves the body, but of the man himself, who, even though
being a corpseafter an authoritative and efficacious ritual has been
performedis risen and made whole, as Spell 77 of the Book of
the Dead states. He becomes an effective being, an akh, externally
manifested as the ba-bird, phoenix, heron, golden falcon, lotus-
flower, man or god. In full possession of all his physical qualities,
effective in any animal, human or divine form, he enters upon a
new glorified life, conceived in purely physical termsfrom this an
Egyptian could hardly ever dissociate himself, and this he
could never sublimate or spiritualize.1139

abkar (1968), 113. (Emph. added.)
abkar (1963), 61-62. (Emph. added.)
Now before any antagonistic readers start to murmur that this is the
word of only one scholar, this conclusion is not unique to just abkar. As
I stated previously, this work of his really began to turn the tides and
since his time many other prominent scholars have followed in his wake.
And of course, they have no choice but to do so, for that is where the
research leads. First up are the testimonials affirming the absence of a
physical/spiritual-corporeal/incorporeal dichotomy.
The Egyptians did not know the western opposition of body and
Dr. Erik Hornung, History of Ancient Egypt: An
The interpretation of the ba being particularly controversial.
Not infrequently it has been translated into English as 'soul', but this
rendering is seriously misleading in that it ignores the fact that the
Egyptians did not think in terms of body and spirit ... in their
conceptual world all things were material and perceived as
Dr. Alan B. Lloyd, Ancient Egypt: State and Society1141
According to Herodotus, Pythagoras and the Orphics obtained
their doctrine of from Egypt (II, 123). This is
certainly incorrect. Not only is there no evidence of this idea in
Egypt but it is fundamentally opposed to the Egyptian mentality.
The idea of metempsychosis is inseparably linked with the concept
of the dual nature of man--body and soul--and the idea that the soul
is required to purify itself from corporeal dross in a series of re-
incarnations until it can be released from the cycle of births. The
Egyptian concept was very different. Certainly man is composed of
several ingredientsbody, b, kbut there is no fundamental
dualism between body and spirit and they can never be
permanently separated.
Dr. Alan B. Lloyd, Herodotus Book II: Introduction1142

Erik Hornung, History of Ancient Egypt: An Introduction, trans. D. Lorton
(Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1978-99), 36. (Emph. added.)
Alan B. Lloyd, Ancient Egypt: State and Society (Oxford: Oxford University
Press, 2014), 210. (Emph. added.)
Alan B. Lloyd, Herodotus Book II: Introduction (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1975-94),
57-58. (Emph. added.)
To understand why the life, death, and resurrection
of Osiris were so significant, one must first grasp how the ancient
Egyptians conceived of the human being. Their conception was
essentially a monistic one. They did not divide the person into a
corruptible body and immortal soul. They did, however, perceive
each individual as having a corporeal self and a social self. For
both, connectivity was an essential prerequisite. Just as the
disparate limbs of the human body could only function effectively
as parts of a properly constituted whole, so too could the individual
person only function as a member of a properly structured society.
Dr. Mark J. Smith, in UCLA Encyclopedia of Egyptology1143
It was stressed above that the Egyptian conception of the
human being was a monistic one. The Egyptians did not divide the
individual into separate components like a body and a soul. But the
references in the preceding paragraphs to terms like akh, ba, ka,
and Osirian form, may appear to contradict this statement. In fact,
there is no contradiction. It must be emphasized that terms like ba,
ka, and so on do not denote constituent parts of a complete
person. Rather, each denotes the complete person, only viewed
from a slightly different aspect to the others. These aspects do not
split the individual into smaller units. What they really do is
connect the individual to groups of other beings or other spheres of
existence within the cosmos.
Instead of fragmenting the self, they extend it. This illustrates
once again the importance of social integration in the Egyptian
conception of resurrection. The principle of connectivity was just
as central in the next world as it was in this one.
Dr. Mark J. Smith, in The Human Body in Death and

Mark J. Smith, Osiris and the Deceased, in UCLA Encyclopedia of
Egyptology, ed. W. Wendrich (Los Angeles: 2008), 2. (Emph. added.)
Mark J. Smith, Resurrection and the Body in Graeco-Roman Egypt, in The
Human Body in Death and Resurrection, eds. T. Nicklas, F.V. Reiterer, and J.
Verheyden (Berlin: Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co. KG, 2009), 35-36. (Emph.
Fig. 121: Diagram inspired by Dr. Mark J. Smith1145 illustrating that bA, kA, and AX, are
not pieces of a person, but rather forms or roles that a person fulfills as they participate
in various realms. Therefore...

Fig. 122

As the Egyptians conceived it, there was a crucial aspect of

human personality that did not develop from the inside to the
outside, but in the opposite direction, from the outside to the
inside. They made the essential distinction within the totality of a
person not that between the body and the soul , but that between
the individual self and the social self.
Dr. Jan Assmann, Death and Salvation in Ancient Egypt 1146
When god is designated ba, he is seen as a dynamic being in
the act of manifesting himself - the god who comes into
being. This ba-power can manifest itself as animate and inanimate
objects, as well as other gods. In the cosmogony the ba of Horus
appears as the Winged Disk (Cpj): it is the Flying Ba (B-dd).
This feature points to another aspect of ba: ba links the god
with his own pre-being. It is the ba that effects the transition from
the underworld (dt). Structurally, ba therefore corresponds to the
transcendent soul of dualistic systems, and this is why the word
sometimes has been translated soul. However, the translation
is not satisfactory because ba is not equivalent to soul in modern
European sense. Egyptian anthropology conceives of god (and
man) as a unit of faculties that can be classified as psychical and
physical. The dualistic paradigm of a being constituted by the
complementary soul and body has no place in Egyptian thought.
Thus, ba (and ka - which is also sometimes translated soul) refers
to the entire personality, and person or self might in many
cases be the nearest equivalents to the terms. The ba can be
invisible (namely, in the underworld ( dt) where it is not seen) or
manifested (the perceptible, cosmic phenomenon), but this
distinction does not coincide with the categories of soul and body.
Dr. Ragnhild B. Finnestad, Image of the World and Symbol of the
The Egyptians did not embrace the Cartesian dichotomy of
body and soul as separate and distinct spheres. They
did not subscribe to a rationalization, comparable to the Western
concepts of internal and external, in respect to the origins of
thoughts and emotions, spirituality or self-determination.

Assmann (2001-05), 14. (Emph. added.)
Ragnhild B. Finnestad, Image of the World and Symbol of the
Creator (Wiesbaden: Otto Harrassowitz GmbH & Co. KG, 1985), 135. (Emph.
Dr. Lynn Meskell, Private Life in New Kingdom Egypt 1148
And for good measure, theres the testimony of an actual Egyptian
priest, Chaeremon of Alexandria (1st cen. CE):
We had Chaeremon as a witness that the Egyptians believed in
nothing prior to the visible world nor in any other gods than the
planets and the other stars, and that they interpreted all things as
referring to the visible parts of the world and nothing in reference
to incorporeal and living beings. ... Chaeremon and most of the
others believed in nothing else prior to the visible worlds and gave
the Egyptians pride of place, for these interpreted all things as
referring to the physical world and nothing in reference to
incorporeal and living beings.
Eusebius, Praeparatio Evangelica 3.9, 13 1149
Chaeremon and the others do not believe in anything prior to
the visible worlds, stating that the basic principles are the gods of
the Egyptians ... they interpret everything as referring
to physical things and nothing reference to incorporeal or living
Porphyry, Epistula ad Anebonem 2.12-13 1150
Next up are the testimonials affirming the physical, biological,
bodily nature of the bA.
Ba. One of several Egyptian words associated with our concept
of soul, but It maintains a physical existence, and thus is not a
real soul.
Dr. Erik Hornung, The Valley of the Kings: Horizon of
Eternity 1151
A further consequence of the rites of mummification was the
awakening or animating of the ba of the deceased. The word ba
means literally what is immanent, i.e. visible manifestation. In
Greek, it can be rendered . Egyptian texts often contrast

Lynn Meskell, Private Life in New Kingdom Egypt (Princeton: Princeton
University Press, 2002), 58. (Emph. added.)
Chaeremon of Alexandria, in Chaeremon, Egyptian Priest and Stoic
Philosopher: The Fragments Collected and Translated with Explanatory Notes,
trans. P.W. Van Der Horst (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1984), 15. (Emph. added.)
Erik Hornung, Valley of the Kings: Horizon of Eternity, trans. D. Warburton
(New York: Timken Publishers, Inc., 1982-90), 206. (Emph. added.)
the ba of a deceased person and his body, but one
should not conclude from this that the former was regarded as a
soul or disembodied spirit. The ba is not an element or component
of an individual. Rather, it is the whole person, but as seen from a
particular aspect: the form in which the deceased was manifested in
the physical world.
As a ba, the deceased could leave the realm of the dead and
travel anywhere on earth or in the sky. In fact, mobility was one of
the most salient characteristics of this aspect of an individual. Bas
were corporeal; they ate and drank and could even engage in sexual
activity. They also had the capacity to assume non-human
forms. This not only enhanced the deceaseds power, but brought
them into closer communion with the gods as well, since by
assuming the form of a particular creature they could join the
following of the deity with whom it was associated. The belief that
the ba could adopt multiple modes of appearance probably
explains why, in some sources, an individual is said to possess more
than one. After undergoing a transformation of the type described
above, or engaging in other sorts of activity, the ba of a dead person
was believed to merge with his body in the underworld each night,
alighting and breathing upon it, thereby maintaining it in a state of
Dr. Mark J. Smith, in The Human Body in Death and
Resurrection 1152
The ba is, however, not exclusively a spiritual-psychic being.
The translation psyche is not really possible then: revelation or
manifestation is more acceptable. The ba is an alter ego of humans
both in a psychic and in a corporeal sense.
Dr. Herman Te Velde, in Concepts of Person in Religion and
Thoughts 1153
To the physical sphere belonged, naturally, the concepts of
body, limbs, and corpse, as well as ba and shadow.
Dr. Jan Assmann, Death and Salvation in Ancient Egypt 1154

Smith (2009), 33-34. (Emph. added.)
Herman Te Velde, Some remarks on the concept person in the ancient
Egyptian culture, in Concepts of Person in Religion and Thoughts, ed. H.G.
Kippenberg, Y.B. Kuiper, A.F. Sanders (Berlin: Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co.
KG, 1990) 92. (Emph. added.)
Assmann (2001-05), 89. (Emph. added.)
The fact of death did not make man immortal. A soul was
made, not born. Strictly speaking, there is no concept in ancient
Egypt which corresponds to our idea of the soul: an invisible,
nonmaterial dweller within the flesh which animates the body
during life and leaves it after death to seek whatever fate its owners
deeds and beliefs have destined it for. The word ba is often
translated as soul; but as a rule it did not come into existence
until after death, and even then only as a result of special
ceremonies which were designed to make a man into a ba.
Dr. Barbara Mertz, Red Land, Black Land: Daily Life in Ancient
Egypt 1155
The ba, although translated as soul, represents
the physical manifestation and power of the god. Thus, the bas of
the sun god were the many forms he could take, one of which was
the phoenix, which is called the ba of Re and into which the
deceased wished to transform by means of BD spell 83.
Dr. Foy Scalf, in Between Heaven and Earth: Birds in Ancient
Egypt 1156
Equating the ba-bird with the 'soul' of the deceased would be
misleading. Interpretations of the ancient texts point to a different
meaning ... and to the ancient Egyptians represented the complete
whole of the deceased and not a being separate from the body.
Dr. Elaine A. Evans, McClung Museum: Research Notes 1157
Now back to abkar:
It would be difficult to find a text which would better indicate
that the deceased enjoyed the afterlife both as a Ba and as a
revivified body, or indeed, as any form he might assume, than does
a well-known inscription in the tomb of Paheri: (Thou shalt)
transform into a living Ba and truly it will have power over bread,
water, and air; (thou shalt) make transformation into a phoenix, a
swallow, a falcon, a heron, as thou pleases. Thou shalt cross in the
ferry boat without being turned back. Thou shalt sail on the waters
of the flood and thy life shall begin anew. Thy Ba shall not depart

Barbara Mertz, Red Land, Black Land: Daily Life in Ancient Egypt (New York:
HarperCollins Publishers, 1966-2008), 312-13. (Emph. added.)
Foy Scalf, The Role of Birds within the Religious Landscape of Ancient
Egypt, in Between Heaven and Earth: Birds in Ancient Egypt, ed. R. Bailleul-
Lesuer (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2012), 35. (Emph. added.)
Elaine A. Evans, Ancient Egyptian Ba-Bird, in McClung Museum: Research
Notes (Knoxville: University of Tennessee), 1993. (Emph. added.)
from thy corpse, thy Ba shall be divine with the Akhs. The
excellent Bas shall speak to thee; thou shalt be equal amongst
(them) in receiving what is given upon earth. Thou shalt have
power over water, breathe air, and drink according to the wish of
thy heart. Thine eyes shall be given to thee to see, thine ears to
hear what is said, thy mouth speaking, thy feet walking. Thine
arms and thy shoulders shall move for thee, thy flesh shall be firm
and thy muscles shall be strong and thou shalt have enjoyment
of all thy limbs. Thou shalt examine thy body (which will
be) whole and sound, without any evil whatsoever being attached to
thee. Thy heart will truly be with thee, thy former heart will belong
to thee. Thou shalt go forth to heaven, thou shalt penetrate the
underworld in any form that thou pleasest. ... In the mortuary
texts of these periods the meaning of the Ba is predominately that
of the alter ego of the deceased. ... This Ba is the personification of
the vital forces, physical as well as psychic, of the deceased, his alter
ego, one of the modes of being in which and as which he continues
to live after death. This Ba comes into existence at or after death,
is corporeal in nature, performs physical activities such as eating,
drinking, and copulating, and has wide-ranging freedom of
movement through the realms of the afterlife. Moreover, this Ba is
not a part of the deceased but is in effect (as referred to in some
texts) the deceased himself in the fullness of his being, physical as
well as psychic. All these characteristics make it obvious that the Ba
was not a soul in any of the connotations associated with this
So as seen above, a bA has to be deliberately created, rather than it
coming into being spontaneously. And just what is it that gets created?
An alter ego. And how is one made? Through magic, in particular, spells
which transform the man himself into a bA. As stated, the bA comes into
existence as an emanation from the body. In other words, the bA is a
form of, a hypostasis of, and a part of, the biological body itself after the
magical spells transform that physical, biological body into a bA, into its
alter ego. Hence, as stated earlier, if applied to modern mythology,
the bA of Clark Kent would be Superman. The bA of Bruce Banner would
be the Hulk. The bA of Billy Batson would be Captain Marvel, etc. and so
on. Using magical spells to transform the deceased into his bA are like
using the magical spell Shazam! to transform Batson into Captain
Marvel, or like when Clark jumps into a phone booth to transform into

abkar (1968), 155-56, 160, 162. (Emph. added.)
Superman. Superman is a form of Clark. He is not Clark's soul, he is
Clark's hypostasis, he is Clark's true form & identity- the state in which
his power is manifest. They inhabit the same body, for they are one & the
same entity. Hence the Egyptian expression bA to heaven, body to earth
would be Superman to heaven, Clark Kent to earth. When Clark
ascends to heaven like the gods, he does so in the form of his bA, in the
form of Superman- his alter ego. Superman is just as physical, corporeal,
and alive as Clark, because he is Clark. And just as Superman or Captain
Marvel or the Hulk all emanate from the same physical, biological bodies
of their human alter egos, so too the bA of an Egyptian human or god
emanates from his/her physical, biological body. Hence images in
Egyptian artwork depicting a person and his bA in the same scene should
not be any more confusing for us than when we see the same spacial
constraints used in comic books which portray both a human and his
superhero alter ego in the exact same scene. As seen below, the Hulk is
not some disembodied soul of Banner leaving Banner's corpse, he is a
physical form of Banner himself emanating from that same body, as is
often seen of the Hulk in his comic book series1159 or of Superman in his
respective series as well.1160

Fig. 123: Bruce Banner and his bA, the incredible Hulk. The Hulk is not Banners soul or
spirit, but merely his alter ego.

Fig. 124: Steve Rogers looks back at his bA, Captain America.

Fig. 125: Dr. Jekyll transforms into his bA/alter ego, Mr. Hyde.

Fig. 126: Billy Batson transforming into his bA, Captain Marvel, through the use of
magical incantation, much like what the ancient Egyptians believed. Billy and his bA are
still one & the same corporeal entity, in spite of often being visually depicted visvis
one another.1161

Fig. 127: And the same goes for Clark Kent and his bA, Superman. (And just as the
aforementioned Egyptian phrase declares: the bA Supermanis up in heaven, and the
bodyClark Kentis down on earth.)

Fig. 128: And the same goes for Nefertari and her bA.

Fig. 129: And the same goes for Ani & his wife Thuthu and their bA, just as it goes for
any ancient Egyptian.

Fig. 130: Thetis vs. Peleus; based on an Athenian red-figure kylix, 6th-5th century BCE,
currently at the Staatliche Museum in Berlin. As per the myth, 1162 to escape the lustful
embrace of Peleus, Thetis shape-shifts into various forms- a lion, a serpent, a bird, a tree,
water, fire, etc. Here Peleus embraces Thetis in her human form, yet is also attacked by
her in lion form and serpent form. All of these are forms of Thetis herself which occur at
later moments in chronological sequence, yet in this depiction they all appear
simultaneously due to spatial limitations. The sequence of different metamorphoses the
goddess undertakes in the myth is visualized by the simultaneous appearance of several
different animals.1163

Sophocles, Fr. 150, 618, in Sophocles: Fragments, trans. H. Lloyd-Jones
(Harvard: Harvard University Press, 1996-2003), 61, 306.
Ovid, in Lombardo (2010), 303.
Apollodorus, in Simpson (1976), 177.
Annetta Alexandridis, Shifting Species: Animal and Human Bodies in Attic
Vase Painting in the 6th and 5th Centuries B.C., in Bodies and Boundaries in
Graeco-Roman Antiquity, eds. T. Fgen, M.M. Lee (Berlin: Walter de Gruyter
GmbH & Co. KG, 2009), 275. (Emph. added.)
See also Beth Cohen, The Colors of Clay: Special Techniques in Athenian Vases
(Los Angeles: Getty Publications, 2006), 322.
Thomas Mannack, The Late Mannerists in Athenian Vase-Painting (Oxford:
Oxford University Press, 2001), 92.
Spell for going forth by day ... letting him enter and leave the
god's domain and assuming the form of a living b.
Book of the Dead, Spell 180 P 1 1164
In this respect, perhaps the best illustration of the bA concept is that
of the character Tyler Durden in the film Fight Club, directed by David
Fincher. In this story, Tyler Durden (played by Brad Pitt) is merely the
alter ego of the narrator & main protagonist, Jack (played by Edward
Norton). Jack often sees and interacts with Tyler as though he is a
physically distinct entity, occasionally even physically interacting with
Tyler via fist fights or sharing beers, etc. Yet they are one in the same
person, the very same physical body. Tyler is not Jack's soul or
spirit. When Jack is physically harmed, so is Tyler. If Jack dies, Tyler
dies. Tyler does not live on in some disembodied state like a ghost
should Jack die. Tyler has no existence apart from Jack, in any capacity.
The only way for Tyler to live again is for Jack to live again, since
Tyler is Jack. In fact, Tyler is even more mortal than Jack, because Jack
is actually the one who lives on (physically, of course) after Tyler dies.
For Tyler is merely his alter ego.1165

Fig. 131: Tyler Durden interacts with Jack, in spite of being literally the same
person as Jack. Seeing Tyler interact with Jack externally does not mean Tyler is Jacks
disembodied soul in some state of astral projection or other o.b.e., etc. Such is also the
case when Egyptians portray their bA. Tyler is not Jacks soul or spirit at all, he is Jacks
alter ego, he is Jacks bA.

T.G. Allen (1974), 190. (Emph. added.)
As Dr. abkar wrote, the deceased thus is a bA and owns a bA.1166
You have your b, you being a b.
Coffin Texts, Spell 279 IV, 26 1167

Fig. 132: Inherkhau interacting with his bA, in spite of the fact that he actually is that
very bA, just as Jack can still interact or even fight with Tyler Durden and at the same
time still be Tyler Durden.

Fig. 133: Ani interacting with his bA, yet at the same time he is that bA.

abkar (1968), 51. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1973), 210. (Emph. added.) See also Spell 216, n.1.
This can be seen illustrated in Fig. 134-35, in which Osiris is
seen as his bA -form, Apis,1168 and yet elsewhere is seen with his bA,
Apis. The same occurs in Fig. 136-37, where Osiris appears as his bA-
form of Sokar,1169 but in another instance is shown with his bA in the
form of Sokar. In fact, in Fig. 138, Osiris is actually manifested as
both bA-forms simultaneously, appearing as Sokar and Apis at the same
time. In Fig. 139-40, Isis is off to the left in human form (always
identifiable by her trademark throne-shaped crown), yet the kite hovering
above the mummy is also Isis, thus clearly a usage of the bA. The fact
that a living body can be portrayed in a distinct location from its bA even
further distances the bA from the Greco-Roman idea of soul/spirit, which
allegedly animates the body and thus would render the body comatose or
dead upon its departure.

Fig. 134: Osiris as his bA (Apis).

See pp.147-61.
abkar (1968), 13, 84-85.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 532 1256.
Book of the Dead, Spell 183 c S 1-2.
Fig. 135: Osiris seen here with his bA, Apis, as Horus takes vengeance on Seth.1170

Fig. 136: Osiris seen here in the form of his bA known as Sokar.

Joseph Campbell, The Mythic Image (Princeton: Princeton University Press,
1974), 24.
Fig. 137: Osiris seen here with his bA- Sokar.

Fig. 138: Osiris seen both as his ba, Sokar, and yet also with his bA, Apis. Recall-
You have your b, you being a b.

Fig. 139: To the left stands Isis in human form, while simultaneously she is hovering
above Osiris in bird form, thus clearly a usage of her bA.

Fig. 140: Same as before- Isis is to the left in human form, yet is also above Osiris in
avian form.

Fig. 141: Recall Dr. Smith's diagram above (Fig. 121).

Now continuing with the above analogy, there have been plenty of
instances in the corpus of Marvel & DC Comics in which superheroes
have in fact occasionally had their alter egos physically split apart from
the original body, thus causing the heroes to occupy two different points
in space simultaneously, and even physically interacting with their
alternate selves (such as fighting each other), yet they both still split from
& merge back into one & the same physical body. This is often seen in

official Marvel & DC media concerning Superman & Clark Kent1171 or
the Hulk & Bruce Banner,1172 etc.

Fig. 142: Clark Kent and his bA, Superman, physically manifest in different locations
simultaneously, in spite of being one & the same entity, as seen in the film Superman III.

Fig. 143: Clark Kent physically interacts with his bA, Superman, in spite of being one &
the same entity composed of the same flesh & blood.

Likewise, an Egyptian's bA/alter ego could temporarily split off a
portion from the original body thus allowing that person to occupy
multiple locations simultaneously, even though both are still using the
same physical body. This is seen in the many instances in which an
Egyptian god will maim himself and cut off an appendage from his body,
such as an eye, and then shape-shift that appendage into a different form
& send it out to do that god's bidding.1173 So too can a divine Egyptian,
through the use of magic, remove portions of his own flesh and mold it
into certain forms, or even into an exact replica of himself, and send it
out to act on his own behalf as though it were himself, since, as his alter
ego and his own flesh, it literally is still himself. And in cases when
bodies of different persons merge into one, like during the
aforementioned henosis of Osiris with Re, each body involved may be
referred to as the others bA or alter ego.
Hail to you, Osiris ... Ba of Re, his very body.
Stela of Amenmose 1174
And once again here the bA is explicitly equated with the body, and
not some incorporeal soul or spirit.
O great one who issues from the efflux which comes into being
from the human body. Go, go yonder bA of mine, that yonder
god may see you wherever he is in my form, my shape and my
wisdom you go by means of the efflux of my flesh and the sweat
of my head.
Coffin Texts, Spell 102 II, 106-08 (22nd cen. BCE)1175
In the Coffin Texts, there are portions of a liturgy whose aim
was to enable the ba to separate itself from the corpse and to exit
the netherworld unhindered. Spells 94-96 and 488-500 are part of
this liturgy. Spell 94 is entitled Causing the Ba to Depart from the
Corpse, a sentiment that runs counter to the fear, frequently
expressed in later texts, that the ba might distance itself from the
corpse. In this spell, the ba is still in close contact with the
body. Osiris has created it out of the discharges of his flesh and

Edward F. Wente, Destruction of Mankind, in The Oxford Encyclopedia of
Ancient Egypt: Volume 1, ed. D.B. Redford (New York: Oxford University Press,
2001), 389.
Lichtheim (1976-2006), 81. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1973), 99-100. (Emph. added.)
the semen of his phallus; it is the ba in its blood. From
his bodily fluids, Osiris creates a ba that is to emerge into the light
of day and take sexual pleasure in the world above. This was a role
the deceased wished to play. In spell 96, the deceased calls himself
that great ba of Osiris, on whose behalf the gods have ordained
that he copulate by means of (etc.). The corresponding divine
commandment reads, Come out and copulate by means of
your ba. This concept shows clearly that the ba belonged to
the physical sphere. The ba belonged to the physical sphere of
the deceased, restoring his movement and his ability to take on
form. Here we are clearly in the horizon of the image of death as
corporal vulnerability. This much is shown by the list
of body parts enumerated in the spell: eyes, knees, jb-heart,
heart, ba, corpse, body, throat, and nose. The unity of the person
has collapsed, and it must be restored to the deceased. Even the ba
belongs to this group of physical aspects and elements; it is one of
the personal items that must be returned to the deceased.
Dr. Jan Assmann, Death and Salvation in Ancient Egypt 1176
As just seen, ones bA is a form of & part of the body every bit as
much as the eyes, ears, hands, legs, head, heart, fluids, etc. It is a portion
of the flesh & blood of the deceased. So it makes sense that it needs to
perpetually reunite with the original body from which it came, or as
Assmann said, it must be returned to the deceased, just as Superman had
to reunite with Clark in the scene referenced in Fig. 142-43 above.
The bA is the physical, biological body. It is both the whole body of the
deceased himself after being transformed, and it is any portion of flesh
taken from that same body, which allows the deceased to exist in various
locations and forms all simultaneously. Hence the bA is a consubstantial
hypostatic projection of identity and power.1177 Thus the Egyptian can
be in heaven, on earth, and below the earth, all at the same time- one of
the many perks of the magical power they acquire after being divinized
post-resurrection. Much like the god Osiris whom they emulate to obtain
that resurrection & transfiguration:
Osiris is present in several different forms at once, as will often
be the case in subsequent phases of the journey.

Assmann (2001-05), 93-94, 97, 292. (Emph. added.)
Redford (2005), 165.
Dr. Dimitri Meeks and Dr. Christine Favard-Meeks , Daily Life of
the Egyptian Gods 1178
Thats not unlike certain other Near Eastern gods like The Good
Shepherd1179 & his father, who claim to have the same ability, declaring
that The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool.
Another analogy to help illustrate this aspect of the bA is seen in
the Shonen Jump manga known as Naruto, by Masashi Kishimoto. The
title characters special skill is a magical spell known as kage bunshin
no jutsu. It allows the caster to split himself into multiple perfect
biological replicas of himself which are exactly the same as the caster in
every way. Bunshins can fight on the casters behalf when outnumbered
by the enemy, or they can perform any other task the caster is also
capable of. Once the spell has fulfilled its purpose, the bunshins are then
reabsorbed into the original body, transferring all of the energy,
memories, and experience to the caster. Whenever other characters in the
series interact with one of Narutos kage bunshins, even when they are
aware that it is a bunshin, they treat the bunshin exactly as they would
Naruto himself- because it is Naruto himself.1180 The only difference is
location. The kage bunshin is a consubstanial hypostasis of the caster,
just like the Egyptian bA. And like the bA, a kage bunshin can, through
the spell henge no jutsu, shape-shift into just about any form Naruto
desires, including inanimate objects.1181 Also like Narutos bunshins,
ones bA can be duplicated (I have duplicated your b for your power-
Coffin Texts, Spell 10061182) so that one can manifest multiple bA forms
at once, e.g. Re has at least seven.1183

Meeks (1993-96), 153.
See p.17.
Faulkner (1978), 108.
abkar (1968), 11.
Fig. 144: Through the kage bunshin concept, Naruto can manifest his body in multiple
locations simultaneously, and can even physically interact with himself, and shape-shift
into different forms- which are many of the same powers achieved through the
Egyptian bA concept.

Fig. 145: Re himself begins the middle register as the Eldest One, leaning on a staff. He
encounters four forms of Osiris, the 'lords of the Duat,' and addresses them.1184 Based
on the 3rd tableau of the Book of Caverns, from the cenotaph of Seti I, 13 th century BCE.

Hornung (1999), 87. (Emph. added.)
Fig. 146: A certain other Near Eastern god physically interacts with his own alter
ego/hypostasis, allowing him to be present in several different forms at once just like
Osiris and other Egyptian gods.

Fig. 147: Once again The Good Shepherd is seen physically interacting with his own
hypostasis/alter ego, this time in the form of a bird, as can also be seen of many an
Egyptian bA (see Fig. 135-40).

The ability to become a bA is how a deity like Nut can be in heaven
forever holding up the firmament, and at the same time can manifest on
the earth or in the netherworld as a sycamore tree.1185 And it is how any
of the resurrected and glorified deceased can physically inhabit the
heavens, the earth, and the netherworld all simultaneously. Also recall
how at night Re becomes the bA of Osiris, and vice-versa,1186 yet both are
still corporeal- Hail to you, Osiris BA of Re, his very body.1187
Exultation and rejoicing (are made) for Osiris N., the divine body of
Once a bA of one person merges with a different body, that other
body too can now be referred to as a bA and serve the exact same
function as that bA and with all of the same abilities, since it now is the bA
during this period of unification. Hence Re & Osiris are referred to as
each others bA, the pharaohs were said to be the bas of Horus and Osiris,
and even an entire army could be called the bA of the pharaoh himself.
For another example, as established earlier, the moon is yet another bA
form of Osiris and yet it can also merge with the other lunar gods such as
Khonsu, Min, Ptah, Ra-Horakhti, etc. In Coffin Text Spell 80, the bA of
Shu says I became Osiris,1189 yet in Spell 333 Shus bA says I became
Re.1190 Then in Spell 312 Horus chooses an unnamed son of Atum
(Shu?) to act as his vicar in the netherworld, whom Horus endows with
his bA. This transforms the vicar into an exact replica of Horus, both in
physical appearance and authority. I have made his form as my form,
his gait as my gait, that he may go and come to Djedu, being invested
with my bA, that he may tell you my affairs.1191 On and on it could go
like this with such examples.1192

See pp.305-08.
See also pp.124-30.
Lichtheim (1976-2006), 81. (Emph. added.)
Book of the Dead, Spell 133 b S, in T.G. Allen (1974), 108. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1973), 85.
Ibid. 257.
Ibid. 229-30, n.2.
abkar (1968), 12.
Anyway, the point of all of this is that from now on, when reading a
translation of an ancient Egyptian text, understand that the words
typically translated as soul or spirit are actually bA and Ax, which
means that the text is referring to a corporeal, consubstantial hypostasis
of the deceased, to the deceased himself as his alter ego. Even the main
translations used throughout this book admit as much.
Soul (bA) Ax, blessed one, passim; magic power bA (for a
recent discussion of meaning see Louis V. abkar, A study of the
Ba Concept in Ancient Egyptian Texts.
Dr. Thomas G. Allen, The Book of the Dead or Going
Forth by Day 1193
I am a soul 1. Read bA.
Dr. Raymond O. Faulkner, The Ancient Egyptian Coffin
Texts, Vol. I 1194
Join spirit with spirit 2. Ax spirit.
Dr. Raymond O. Faulkner, The Ancient Egyptian Coffin
Texts, Vol. II 1195
For they have seen the King appearing in power BA, old
perfective of bA be a soul, have power the noun bA certainly
means power or might.
Dr. Raymond O. Faulkner, The Ancient Egyptian Pyramid
Texts 1196
A bA is a form of a corporeal body made of flesh, not some ethereal
soul, spirit, or ghost, etc.

T.G. Allen (1974), 277, 283, 289.
Faulkner (1973), 172-73.
Faulkner (1977), 168.
Faulkner (1969), 80, 83.
And He was Transfigured Before Them

Fig. 148

The bA was not the only form the body of the deceased could obtain
after its resurrection. There was an even better form, an immortal form, a
divine form. To obtain this form, those resurrected from the dead must
also undergo a transfiguration. This transfigured, glorified state is known
as Ax. Again, like the case with the bA, the Ax is not a soul or spirit. It is
still very much physical because it is a form of your body.
The Egyptians believed that by creating a mummy,
the corpse (khat) was able to achieve the ultimate transfigured state
known as akh and thus become like Osiris.
Dr. Lidija M. McKnight, in Mummies Around the World: An
Encyclopedia of Mummies in History, Religion, and Popular
Culture 1197

Lidija M. McKnight, Religion and mummies, in Mummies Around the
World: An Encyclopedia of Mummies in History, Religion, and Popular Culture,
ed. M. Cardin (Santa Barbara: ABC-CLIO, LLC, 2015), 352. (Emph. added.)
It was the au (Axw), or spiritualized, transfigured body (Xet)
which went to heaven (PT 474, cf. 318), a word which is often
translated soul or spirit, but without justification.
Dr. Samuel A.B. Mercer, The Religion of Ancient Egypt 1198
Performing the rites of mummification was believed to restore
the deceased to life, but this was not their only result. Another
consequence was that they elevated him or her to a new, exalted
status, that of akh. The root from which this word is derived refers
to a power or force which operates without visible connection
between cause and effect.
How was this power mobilized in the mummification ritual? It
could be harnessed through the medium of the spoken or recited
word, specifically through a category of spells known
as glorifications or transfigurations. The Egyptian word for
these, sakhu, is derived from the same root as the noun akh and
means literally making or transfiguring into an akh. One becomes
an akh as a result of their recitation. It was precisely spells of this
nature that Isis uttered to restore Osiris to life. Here we have the
answer to our question, how could the deceased hope to emulate
that god? By being glorified or transfigured in the same manner as
he was.
Dr. Mark J. Smith, in The Human Body in Death and
Resurrection 1199
The Egyptians considered their blessed, efficient, and
influential dead (i.e., the akhu) as living, that is, as resurrected.
According to Egyptian ideas on life, death, and resurrection, a
person did not have an akh, he or she had to become one.
Moreover, this posthumous status was not reached automatically.
Human beings had to be admitted and become transfigured or
elevated into this new state. The dead became blessed or
effective akhu only after mummification and proper burial rites
were performed on them and after they had passed through
obstacles of death and the trials of the underworld. Thus, only a
person who lived according to the order of maat, who benefited
from rituals or spells called the sakhuthose which cause one to
become an akh or the akh-ifiersand was subsequently buried,
could be glorified or become transfigured into an akh. Late Old
Kingdom and First Intermediate Period offering formulae attest the
idea that a person was made akh by the lector priest and the
embalmer. After reaching this status, the dead were revived and

Mercer (1949), 46. (Emph. added.)
Smith (2009), 32. (Emph. added.)
raised to a new plane of existence. The positive status of the mighty
and transfigured akhu was mirrored by a negative concept of
the mutu who represented those who remained dead, i.e., the
As early as in the Pyramid Texts (PT 584 - 585, 612, 636,
648, 1712, 2264), Osiris is said to have become an akh (blessed,
justified, glorified, resurrected, mighty, etc.) through the deeds of
his son Horus; in the same way, Horus was believed to have
become akh-effective and was legitimized by his father Osiris.
Dr. J Jank, in UCLA Encyclopedia of Egyptology 1200
A preliminary offering ritual is performed, the numerous rites
of which are called glorifications, or, literally, that which makes
one into an akh (s3w).
Dr. Harold Hays, in UCLA Encyclopedia of Egyptology 1201
The goddesses Isis and Nephthys mourn and praise the
deceased, while glorification texts proclaimand thus enablethe
dead persons successful transition to a transfigured state of being.
Dr. Christina Riggs, in UCLA Encyclopedia of Egyptology 1202
The akh is the human being as a glorified departed one, who
resides in the grave or the realm of the dead, but can also intervene
in life upon earth.
Dr. Herman Te Velde, in Concepts of Person in Religion and
Thoughts 1203
Let me interject here briefly and point out how the fact that, once
transfigured, a resurrected Egyptian could still intervene in life upon
earth contradicts the common dubious objection from apologists which
asserts that after Osiris' death he was forever bound to the netherworld
never to return to the world of the living here on earth. However, this

J Jank, Akh, in UCLA Encyclopedia of Egyptology, ed. W. Wendrich (Los
Angeles: 2013), 2-3, 4. (Emph.
Harold Hays, Funerary Rituals (Pharaonic Period), in UCLA Encyclopedia of
Egyptology, ed. W. Wendrich (Los Angeles: 2010), 8. (Emph. added.)
Christina Riggs, Funerary Rituals (Ptolemaic and Roman Periods), in UCLA
Encyclopedia of Egyptology, ed. W. Wendrich (Los Angeles: 2010), 2. (Emph. added.)
Te Velde (1990) 92. (Emph. added.)
ludicrous objection is even further destroyed on pp.478-86 in vivid detail
with countless scholars & primary sources. Now getting back on track:
They hoped for a transfigured body that resembled its earthly
counterpart yet surpassed it in both size and abilities. Although
once again fully functional, this afterlife body would be free of all
earthly shortcomings; it would even repeatedly rejuvenate itself in
the tomb. All the physical infirmities normally associated with old
age would be overcome in the renewed body. Missing limbs
would regenerate themselves, a severed head even rejoin its torso.
The unlimited capacity for change and regeneration is the
foundation for all ancient Egyptian beliefs about the hereafter.
It is shown always as a mummy, which indicates not merely the
physical body, but the more general concept of divine life-form in
the hereafter. A person can become an akh only after death, and
descriptions of the afterlife differentiate clearly between akhsthe
blessed deadand those dead persons who have been judged and
condemned. Related to the Egyptian verb meaning to illuminate,
the term akh is usually translated as transfigured one, for it is
through a process of ritual transfigurations that the deceased
becomes an akh.
Dr. Erik Hornung, Idea into Image: Essays on Ancient
Egyptian Thought 1204
The Pyramid Texts contain the oldest available references to
mouth-opening rites in Egypt. These are royal texts dating from the
Old Kingdom composed of a funerary ritual of mortuary offerings,
connected with
the corporeal reconstitution, resurrection, spiritualization and
deification of the deceased king, and involving magical apotropaic
formulae, mythical formulae identifying the deceased king with
certain deities, prayer and petitions on behalf of the deceased king
and proclamations of his heavenly transfiguration and greatness.
It is succeeded by a multitude of Utterances, for example,
endowing the deceased with charms to ward off serpents on his way
through the chthonic realm (Ut. 226-43), powers and aids in the
encounter with the ferryman (Ut. 300-311, 503-522), celebrating his
rebirth, resurrection, ascension, transfiguration and life as a God in
Heaven (Ut. 529-90), trailing off with addresses to the deceased
king as a God (Ut. 690; cf. Mercer 1952: I, ix-xi).
Dr. Gregory Yuri Glazov, The Bridling of the Tongue and the
Opening of the Mouth in Biblical Prophecy 1205

Hornung (1989-92), 104, 184. (Emph. added.)
Egyptian thinking deemed that the corporeal self should have
integrity in death. The body wrappings and coffins
were regenerative casings that would allow the transfigured body to
emerge free from earthly imperfections.
Dr. Lynn Meskell, Private Life in New Kingdom Egypt 1206
The akh was the deceased transfigured into an eternal and
unchanging living being of light, frequently associated with the stars.
Dr. Salima Ikram, Death and Burial in Ancient Egypt 1207
Elaborate ritual sequences formed a central part of the system
designed to bring the deceased back to life and keep them
there, i.e. to convert them to akhs, 'luminous ones', members of
the resurrected and transfigured dead.
Dr. Alan B. Lloyd, Ancient Egypt: State and Society 1208
Ritual of the glorification of Osiris
that his ba might become glorified, his corpse become stable,
that his ba might shine in heaven,
that his corpse might endure in the Underworld,
that he might rejuvenate each day of the month,
that his son, Horus, might be secure upon his throne,
being in his office forever.
Ritual for the Glorification of Osiris 1209
The glorified bodies (sw) are rejuvenated.
Temple of Edfu, V 29, line 13 1210

So even with unjustified ad hoc stipulations like the

aforementioned1211 by Mr. Carpenterresurrection is a very specific
idea of a dead person returning in a glorified body. There is no other type
of resurrection if we use the term properly1212which he uses to try

Glazov (2001), 364, 367. (Emph. added.)
Meskell (2002), 184. (Emph. added.)
Ikram (2003), 31. (Emph. added.)
Lloyd (2014), 226. (Emph. added.)
Manassa (2007), 419. (Emph. added.)
abkar (1968), 44, n.285. (Emph. added.)
See p.221.
and distance the resurrection of The Good Shepherd1213 from the much
earlier bodily resurrection of Osiris still fails him in that purpose.
Carpenter man declares: Osiris resurrected? Not if resurrection is
defined as coming back in a glorified body.1214 Actually, as we just saw
in the sources quoted above, yes he was. Osiris, and the deceased
Egyptians who emulated him, most certainly were believed to have been
resurrected in a glorified body, which they called the AX.

He is Like unto a Man Beholding his Natural Face in a Mirror

Fig. 149: KA.

Just like the case with bA & Ax, the word kA too has often been
mistranslated as soul or spirit, and so there is no shortage of books
for obstinate antagonists to run to and say see! Here it says
'soooooouuuuul'!!1! But alas, as with bA & Ax, those too are inadequate,
outdated misnomers to use for kA. Double has likewise been a
traditional translation and is slightly more accurate, but still does not do
it justice. As previously touched upon briefly at the beginning of chapter
3, the kA is your reflection, your image (or appearance), and by
extension (especially in the familial context) your likeness. Just as you

See p.17.
look at the ground in the sunlight and see your shadow, you look in a
mirror or water etc. and you see your kA, your double, your image.
Hence why the hieroglyph for the kA is a pair of arms, since a person's
arms are mirror images of one another.
Like the shadow which cannot be detached from the object,
so, too, the Ka or Double is the reflection of the object as it is
conceived in the mind.
Dr. Andrey O. Bolshakov, Man and his Double in Egyptian
Ideology of the Old Kingdom1215
A mirror can enclose one's double (for example, the
Egyptian Ka).
Dr. Rabun M. Taylor, The Moral Mirror of Roman Art 1216

Andrey O. Bolshakov, Man and his Double in Egyptian Ideology of the Old
Kingdom (Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz Verlag, 1997), 126.
Rabun M. Taylor, The Moral Mirror of Roman Art, (Cambridge: Cambridge
University Press, 2008), 2.
Fig. 150: A maid servant brings a mirror (and ointment) to Senet, which she describes as
For your kA; based on a relief from the tomb of Senet at Thebes, TT60, 20th century

Hence why statues made of yourself are likewise called your kA, they
are images or likenesses of you, just as your reflection in a mirror is.
The external ka is any representation of the person in a graphic
Dr. Glenn S. Holland, Gods in the Desert: Religions of the
Ancient Near East 1217

Holland (2009), 59.
The k is the Double manifesting itself in representations ...
The Double exists only in the unity with its manifestations. ... This
is supported by the interpretation of purchasing servants
representations as buying their k.w.
Dr. Andrey O. Bolshakov, Man and his Double in Egyptian
Ideology of the Old Kingdom1218

Fig. 151: This statue is an image of Hor Awibre (18th cen. BCE), made in his likeness,
and as such it is his kA, as explicitly identified by the double-arm kA symbol upon his

Bolshakov (1997), 157, 262.
Fig. 152: Based on a KA statue of Amenemhet III, 19th cen. BCE.

Fig. 153: KA statue of Djoser, 27th cen. BCE, currently at the Cairo Museum.

Fig. 154: KA statue of Overseer of Works, Middle Kingdom period, currently at the
Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum in San Jose.
Fig. 155: KA statue of a vizier, 18th cen. BCE, currently at the Walters Art Museum in

Fig. 156: KA statue of Nehy, 13th cen. BCE, currently at the Walters Art Museum.

And just as children/offspring resemble their parents & ancestors,
bearing their likeness, or as we often call it, a spitting image of an
ancestor, children/offspring & their ancestors are referred to as kA of
each other, for they bear each other's likeness. Hence why kA was used
as an ancestral term for hereditary traits in Egypt. In the ancestral
context, the Egyptian kA was simply what we today understand as
genetics, as the hereditary traits passed on from generation to generation
through DNA. The Egyptians obviously were not aware of DNA yet, so
they utilized the kA/reflection concept to express that. Thus the Pyramid
Texts speak of Osiris as the kA of his father Geb:
O Osiris the King, you are his k.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 176 102 1219
Each ka was individual, but also, according to Lanny Bell, the
manifestation of a primeval ancestral ka moving from one
generation to another of each family line.
Dr. David O. Connor, in Encyclopedia of the
Archaeology of Ancient Egypt 1220
Summing up, one might call the ka the vital energy of men or
gods or the ability to function as a person. It must be remarked
here that the emphasis is not upon the person as an individual but
on the person as a type, entirely in accordance with the fact that in
Egyptian literature and art and other Egyptian phenomena it is not
the individual but the typical which is stressed. Men and gods have
a ka, have a personality structure that they have usually inherited or
received from their ancestors. In so far as one would wish to go on
ranking the ka among the various conceptions of the soul, the ka is
the ancestral soul, the total of hereditary qualities that an individual
human has received from the ancestors, his typical personal
structure. Hence we can understand that the offering to the dead
made especially by the eldest son and members of the family are
addressed to the ka of the departed. Children resemble their
parents in the structure of their personality. ... Elsewhere
also ka and ancestor are connected with one another. A wish
expressed for the departed is 'that his hand may be taken by his ka-
s, by his fathers'. Gardiner's descriptions of the ka as 'fortune' and
'position' become clearer if one considers the ka as ancestor-soul or
hereditary structure of the person.

Faulkner (1969), 33.
Connor (1999), 100.
Dr. Herman Te Velde, in Concepts of Person in Religion and
Thought 1221
When a man sees his likeness in a mirror, he is seeing his kA. When a
man sees his likeness in his son and/or his father, he is seeing his kA.
When he sees his profile painted by an artist, or a statue of himself
carved by a sculptor, he is looking at his own kA. When he sees his
picture on his driver's license, he looking at his kA, etc. and so on. Hence
the tradition of providing a kA with sustenance. If you happened to walk
by a mirror or a pool while eating an apple, you would likewise see your
reflection/kA eating an apple as well. Hence it was only natural to
conclude that if you ate food then so did your kA. And if the apple you
were eating likewise has a kA/reflection seen in the mirror, then providing
an apple at the tomb of the deceased provided a kA/reflection of that
apple for the deceased person's kA/reflection to eat.
Besides the owners Double, the Doubles of the chair he sits
on, of the table placed before him and of the food lying on it must
exist as well. Does it mean, however, that all the objects on the
earth plane have their Doubles? We have already touched upon
this question in the preceding chapters and the answer quite
logically following from our observations seems to be positive.
Dr. Andrey O. Bolshakov, Man and his Double in Egyptian
Ideology of the Old Kingdom1222
The words for your ka are associated both with offering
alcohol and with offering mirrors. The phrase for your ka might
be taken literally, with the mirror being the depository of the soul.
Each person has his ka a part of his soul and he goes to it when
he dies.
Dr. Carolyn Graves-Brown, Dancing for Hathor: Women in
Ancient Egypt1223
This is observed in a relief from the sarcophagus of Queen Kawit at
Deir El-Bahari in which a servant pours her a bowl of milk while
declaring that it is For your kA, O mistress. Kawit then drinks said
milk herself, but does so while looking into a mirror in her left hand.

Te Velde (1990) 95-96. (Emph. added.)
Bolshakov (1997), 262.
Carolyn Graves-Brown, Dancing for Hathor: Women in Ancient
Egypt (London: Continuum UK, 2010), 167-168. (Emph. added.)
Fig. 157: When Kawit drinks milk, her kA/reflection in the mirror drinks that milk's
reflection too.

Thus it is no wonder that kA was described with exactly the same

physical, bodily, corporeal language as the body was, for it was a
reflection of that body. And thus it makes sense for scholars like Dr.
Smith to say that the kA denotes the complete person, only viewed from
a slightly different aspect, in this case, the different aspect being viewed
is that aspect in a mirror and the like.
The double is no incarnation of a certain component of a
man, but a complete copy of him as an individual.
Dr. Andrey O. Bolshakov, Man and his Double in Egyptian
Ideology of the Old Kingdom1224
You shall not perish and your ka shall not perish, for you are a kA.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 215 1491225
The king is Ka.
The Loyalist Instruction of the Sehetepibre Stela II.15 1226
And that was written in reference to the then reigning, living king
Amenemhat III (19th cen. BCE) who, still being alive, was clearly not
some incorporeal ghost, yet was still a kA. His kA was himself, and not a

Bolshakov (1997), 153.
Faulkner (1969), 43. (Emph. added.)
William K. Simpson, The Loyalist Instruction of the Sehetepibre Stela,
in The Literature of Ancient Egypt: An Anthology of Stories, Instructions, Stelae,
Autobiographies, and Poetry, ed. W.K. Simpson (New Haven: Yale University
Press, 2003),173. (Emph. added.)
certain component of him. When you see your own reflection, you do
not interact with it as though it is a constituent part of you. You do not
interact with it as though it is some separate entity apart from you. And
you certainly do not interact with it as though it is your soul or spirit.
You interact with your reflection as though it is you, your self, your
complete self, the same self that the rest of the world knows you as. You
don't comb your mirror to change your reflection's hair, instead you
comb your hair. You don't shave the mirror or scrub toothpaste on the
mirror, etc. You do these things to yourself, because that reflection, that
image, that kA, is you.
The human ka was never represented as a separate figure,
because any representation itself is the ka.
Dr. Andrey O. Bolshakov, in The Oxford Encyclopedia
of Ancient Egypt, Vol. 2 1227
Just as a dead person casts no shadow, so also a dead person casts no
reflection in a mirror, i.e. no kA. These things were not other modes of
existence for a deceased person, they were indicators that they were in
fact still alive & kicking. If you still cast a shadow, you by default must
be alive & moving, rather than decomposed or sealed away in the
darkness of a tomb. If you still cast a reflection, you by default must be
alive & moving rather than rotted away or locked up in the darkness of a
sarcophagus, etc. This is somewhat reminiscent of the more modern
legends about how vampires lack a reflection because technically they
are dead. Hence an important part of the process of resurrection in
ancient Egypt was known as going to your kA to retrieve it- Someone
has gone to his kA, Osiris has gone to his kA.1228 (And that usually
involved going to one's previously departed ancestors to retrieve it,1229
since they were, after all, the genetic source from which you inherited
that kA and thus the source to which it returned when released by

Andrey O. Bolshakov, Ka, in The Oxford Encyclopedia of Ancient Egypt,
Vol. 2, ed. D.B. Redford (New York: Oxford University Press, Inc., 2001), 216.
(Emph. added.)
Pyramid Texts, Utt. 447 826 & 450 832.
Assmann (2001-05), 99-100.
death.1230) If you have no kA/reflection then you're not truly alive, just
like a vampire. Hence also why Khnum is portrayed as endowing
newborn humans with a reflection/kA when they are created, for without a
reflection/kA, life cannot begin and birth cannot take place.
The Ka corresponded with the shadow in the visible world.
Like the shadow which cannot be detached from the object, so,
too, the Ka or Double is the reflection of the object as it is
conceived in the mind. But the Egyptian did not realize that it was
only a product of the mind. For him, it was as real and material as
the shadow itself; indeed, it was much more material, for it had an
independent existence of its own. It could be separated from the
object of which it was a facsimile and presentment, and represent it
elsewhere. Nay, more than this, it was what gave life and form to
the object of which it was the image; it constituted, in fact, its
essence and personality.
Dr. Andrey O. Bolshakov, Man and his Double in Egyptian
Ideology of the Old Kingdom 1231
The word mirror in ancient Egyptian is the same as that for life.
Dr. Emily Teeter and Courtney DeNeice Kleinschmidt-Jacobsen,
in The Life of Meresamun: A Temple Singer in Ancient Egypt 1232

The ka returns to the social sphere from which it came, to the ancestors
who have already died- Assmann (2001-05), 101.
At death ones ka went to rest, subsumed back into its generic folds, a return
to commonality.- Mark Lehner, Fractal House of Pharaoh: Ancient Egypt as a
Complex Adaptive System, a Trial Formulation, in Dynamics in Himan and
Primate Societies: Agent-Based Modeling of Social and Spatial Processes, eds.
T.A. Kohler and G.J. Gumerman (Oxford: Oxford University Press, Inc., 2000),
Bolshakov (1997), 126. (Emph. added.)
Emily Teeter and Courtney DeNeice Kleinschmidt-Jacobsen, 26. Mirror,
in The Life of Meresamun: A Temple Singer in Ancient Egypt, eds. E. Teeter and
J.H. Johnson (Chicago: The Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago,
2009), 63.
Fig. 158: Khnum fashions the infant Hatshepsut and her kA/reflection upon his potter's
wheel, after which Heqet endows her with the breath of life; based on a scene from the
Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut at Deir El-Bahri, 15th cen. BCE.

Fig. 159: The new born prince is presented to Amen after being endowed with his
own kA/reflection, which is identified as such by the standard above its head (left) bearing
the double-arm kA symbol; based on a scene from the Temple of Luxor, 18th Dynasty.

KA doesn't merely mean your physical likeness, it can also extend to

a likeness of your personality/behavioral traits. Again, this is seen when
family members resemble each other in behavior, e.g. when a mother,
exasperated with the stubbornness of her son, tells him you're just like
your father! That is again because he is a kA or reflection of his father.
This goes back to the genetic link mentioned earlier. The DNA we
inherit from our ancestors not only determines the appearance of our
bodies, it also determines the structure of our brains, i.e. our minds.
Hence we will inherit the behavioral traits or reflections/kA of our
ancestors' personalities as well. When you look like your ancestors and
act like ancestors and live in the same environment as your ancestors, the
odds are good that your life will end up following a similar path as your
ancestors. Hence the Egyptians often used the word kA in relation to what
we would call destiny, fate, fortune, luck, etc. It's only natural that a
king's son was expected or destined to be king of Egypt just like he
was. And similar occupations have similar hazards, hence both a father
and a son who are king of Egypt might both end up as warmongers, or
victims of conspiracies & assassination attempts, etc. That similar life
story or destiny of one generation and the next was likewise credited to
the transference of the same kA from one generation to the next.
KA could designate human individuality as a whole, and in
different contexts it could be translated as character, nature,
temperament, or disposition. Since character to a great extent
preordains the life of an individual, k also means destiny, or
Dr. Andrey O. Bolshakov, in The Oxford Encyclopedia of
Ancient Egypt, Vol. 2 1233
The ka is the most complex concept in the Egyptian idea of
the person. The ka has to do with the individual identity of a
person, his or her character, and the way character determines the
shape and ultimate nature of a person's life.
Dr. Glenn S. Holland, Gods in the Desert: Religions of the
Ancient Near East1234
By extension of this aspect of the kA as the source of one's behavioral
traits, phenomena at large were sometimes associated with a particular
person's kA, because the phenomena was reminiscent or reflective of that
person's behavior. For instance, if a king was a very aggressive
warmonger hell-bent on conquest, then his army or an act of war or a
natural disaster might be associated with that particular king's kA, because
of the resemblance (or reflection) between his aggressive, destructive
nature and destruction caused by those phenomena. Hence the
phenomena of strength, prosperity, nourishment, glory, respect,
effectiveness, permanence, creativity, magical power, etc. were all said
to each be a kA of the god Re.1235 The king was said to be a kA of all the
gods,1236 for he too is divine and thus shares in their nature or likeness.
Likewise, all of creation could even be referred to as the king's kA, since
the chief trait of an Egyptian king was his alleged authority over all
creation. If the king rules over all creation, and arranges it by his
command, then by default that same creation he rules over reflects his

Bolshakov (2001), 215.
Holland (2009), 59.
Hornung (1978-99), 175.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 589 1609.
traits, just as the America under George W. Bush was a reflection of his
leadership and thus was regarded by its citizens as quite a different
America than the one under Bill Clinton. Just as popular culture might
regard the phrase America invaded Afghanistan as essentially
synonymous with the phrase Bush invaded Afghanistan, so too the
ancient Egyptians would've regarded a phrase like the king rules over
all creation as synonymous with all of creation is his kA. E.g.:
What you have commanded is everything that occurs.
Marriage Stela of Ramesses II1237
His ka is everything that exists.
Luxor Inscription of Ramesses II1238
Is everything that exists some incorporeal soul or spirit? Hardly. Just
reach out & touch the corporeal book or screen you're reading from right
now with your corporeal hand of flesh to see that. In an oversimplified
nutshell, the kA concept was an attempt to explain the observed similarity
between things, be it physical or abstract. The primary examples of
course being the similarity between you & images of you such as your
reflection or your profile in artwork, or the similarity between you and
your family members. In effect, your kA was you as an archetype.1239
The ka is the divine counterpart of the deceased, holding the
same relation to him as a word to the conception which it
expresses, or a statue to the living man. It was his individuality as
embodied in the mans name, the picture of him which was, or
might have been, called up in the minds of those who knew him at
the mention of that name
Dr. Andrey O. Bolshakov, Man and his Double in Egyptian
Ideology of the Old Kingdom1240
So knowing all of this, you can see the folly in the apologetic claim
against Osiris that his kA went on to rule the underworld ... when it was

Assmann (1996-2002), 244.
Bolshakov (1997), 126.
Te Velde (1990) 95-96. Recall- It must be remarked here that the emphasis is
not upon the person as an individual but on the person as a type.
Ibid. 125.
over he was still dead. However, his kA was preserved because his body
was preserved.1241 And yet, as quoted earlier:
Someone has gone to his ka, Osiris has gone to his ka.
Pyramid Texts, Utt. 447 826 & 450 832.1242
If Osiris is dead yet he is going to his kA, then what, pray tell, is
doing the going then? The kA is his reflection, not his soul or spirit. Thus
if Osiris is dead, then when you hold a mirror up to his corpse, his
reflection/kA will likewise be a dead corpse. This was covered earlier
when it was shown that a kA likewise needs to eat and eats whenever its
owner eats. If someone starves and emaciates, then when he looks in a
mirror his reflection/kA will also be starved and emaciated. If he is dead,
his reflection will be dead. If he rots away into nothing, his reflection
will likewise vanish as well, and vice-versa (hence the attempts in
ancient Egypt to erase certain persons from existence itself by erasing
anything that bore their image/kA or even their name, e.g. Hatshepsut or
Akhenaten, etc.1243). However, on that same point, if your reflection is
still alive, then you by default must still be alive. The perpetual existence
of one's kA/reflection served as proof that the person's xet/khet or body
which cast that reflection was still alive. As seen in the images of infants
being created & given a reflection by Khnum, the reflection was likewise
an infant- it was in the same state as the xet, just as when you look in a
mirror and your reflection is the same age & same state of health as you.
Osiris' kA/reflection most certainly did live on after death, but that is only
because Osiris himself lived on after death when he was physically,
bodily resurrected and transfigured into immortality. Hence the reflection
cast by that resurrected living body would be living as well. Of course,
no doubt obstinacy may drive some antagonistic readers here to resort to
toggling definitions & attempting to pigeonhole kA into the
children/family are also kA bit expounded upon earlier, but that was
hardly the usage of the word as employed in the apologetic contention
quoted above. But even when humoring that fallacious toggling, is
Horusin his role as a kA/reflection/likeness of his father Osirissome

Faulkner(1969), 148-49.
Ikram (2003), 25-26.
incorporeal ghost? The afore-quoted apologist has stated elsewhere that
Horus was supposed to be the archetype of the living king reigning on
earth,1244 rather than some immaterial kA [that] went on to rule the
underworld. No matter how they try to slice it, they just cannot escape
the fact that kA does not equate to a ghost/soul/spirit or some other non-
bodily posthumous mode of existence. And the same goes for bA & Ax as
Now, since the idea itself of an alter-ego (bA) or a likeness (kA) is
abstract (like all ideas are), then as an idea it is technically non-
physical in that respect, and thus in certain contexts it may be fairly
referred to as such without contradiction with all of the above. To help
grasp this point, the same may be said of a person's name, for example,
the name Rameses. A name itself is abstract, it is an idea, and as such
is something non-physical, and yet if I say Rameses was king of Egypt,
I am not saying that a non-physical entity such as a name or a
disembodied ghost etc. was the king of Egypt. Rameses was very much a
corporeal entity with a living, physical, biological body.
In synopsis:
Ba is an alter ego/form/hypostasis in which a person is
physically manifest and executes his power, e.g. Superman is
the ba of Clark Kent.
Ka is ones image/reflection, which is observed in anything
bearing his likeness, be it his reflection in a mirror, his profile in
artwork (statues, paintings, etc.), photographs or video footage of
him, or family members who look and/or act like him, etc.
Shwt is shadow.1245
Haty is ones heart (as the seat of the cardiovascular system).1246
Ib is ones heart (as the seat of emotion, which is symbolized
today with this- . E.g. she loves him with all her heart, i.e.
she loves him with all her ib).1247

abkar (1968), 135 n.63.
Chester Beatty Papyrus VII.4-6.
Remler (2000-10), 78.
Khet is ones body before death.1248
Khat is ones body after death.1249
Sah is ones body after mummification.1250
Akh is ones body after resurrection & subsequent transfiguration
into a divine state.
None of the above=a soul or spirit.
The above concepts were merely mistranslated as such by the
Egyptologists living in the immediate wake of the decipherment of the
Rosetta Stone (setting that trend of mistranslation for the next few
generations that followed), because before that the knowledge to
translate ancient Egyptian texts had been lost for around two millennia.
Thus the only point of reference those Egyptologists had for interpreting
these strange new (to them) concepts was their Western Romanized
thinking in which they were born, raised, & educated. But a long time
has passed since the Rosetta Stone and now scholars in the field know
better. So with all of that out of the way, we can now finally proceed on
to Osirian resurrection.

Handle Me, and See; for a Spirit hath not Flesh and Bones,
as Ye See Me Have

Ikram (2003), 24.
Fig. 160: Pharaoh Tutankhamun handles the living body of his ancestor Osiris.

Because of the widespread ignorance of the above facts and the

reliance on outdated translations for these uniquely Egyptian concepts,
antagonists often claim that Egyptians did not believe in physical
resurrection. They say that ancient Egyptians believed instead that the
dead simply lived on as disembodied ghosts, and that the same was true
for Osiris. All of the previous material in this chapter debunks that
notion. Yet even in the rare instances when some of these fools
begrudgingly acknowledge that fact, they will still have a tendency to fall
into kettle logic and claim that while Osiris mightve had some manner
of physicality in his posthumous existence, it was all exclusively
confined to the underworld. And in that underworld Osiris & the
deceased were to forever remain with no possibility of escape, and
certainly never to return to this world of the living, and most definitely
never to return here in their physical bodies- so goes the claim. But alas,
this too is debunked by the primary sources and more updated
scholarship, as shall be seen. The sequence of resurrection in ancient
Egypt was firstly mummification of the corpse, followed by burial in a
tomb here on earth that involved magical rituals, then physical
resurrection of that same mummified corpse which had died (a
resurrection which thus took place within that tomb here on earth), and
finally the magical departure of that same body from its tomb here on
earth where it resurrected to ultimately ascend into Heaven & pass over
into the netherworld.
These inscriptions are called the Pyramid Texts. They are
spells that deal primarily with three stages in a kings resurrection:
(1) his awakening in the pyramid; (2) his ascending through the
sky to the netherworld; and (3) his admittance into the company of
the gods.
Dr. Bob Brier, Ancient Egyptian Magic 1251
The deceased kings resurrected in their tombs/pyramids, and it is
common knowledge that those tombs & pyramids, many of which are
still standing today, were located right here on earth. Only
then, after they had already resurrected here, do they then travel to the
netherworld, wherein they dwelled by choice and not by duress. For
contrary to what antagonists allege, Osiris & the deceased could and did
return to the world of the living here on earth, as I cover thoroughly
on pp.478-92. So it is quite amusing to see such antagonists stick their
feet in their mouths with dubious statements like the following (sadly,
some of these are actually from competent scholars in other fields
irrelevant to Egyptology):
Osiris died and stayed dead.1252
A bodily resurrection for Osiris had been exposed as erroneous. 1253
The traditional Egyptian belief was that the body must be preserved
and/or an icon of the body provided in order to assure they would
continue their journey to the afterlife. There was, however, no belief
they would one day return to reclaim their restored body.1254

Brier (1980-2001), 113. (Emph. added.)
Osiris doesnt get resurrected. He doesnt rise from the dead.
Osiris doesnt come back among the living. Horus- he doesnt raise
him from the dead. It has nothing to do with him rising again, it
doesnt happen that way. So Osiris does not join the living, he stays
Osiris didnt actually raise [sic] from the dead but remained burried
[sic] and ruled in the abode of the dead.1256
He was a dead god, not a living/resurrected one.1257
Osiris did not return to earth IN HIS RESURRECTED BODY.
Osiris body was dismembered and REMAINED IN PIECES, while his
DISEMBODIED SOUL sometimes came to earth.1258
Osiris did NOT resurrect back to earth according to the myth
We discovered that there is no tradition to support Mr. Tills thesis that
Osiris followers believed that he bodily rose for a period of time here on
earth. All indications are that Osiris reanimation was limited to the land
of the dead (duat) in the minds of his followers.1259
Osiris did not rise ... His body did not rise from the dead.1260
The Egyptians did not believe in a bodily resurrection from the
dead. Nonetheless, separate aspects of a persons personalityor, as
some have interpreted them, separate modes of a personwere believed
to remain active after death, even though the persons corpse remained in
the tomb.1261
What, for example, is the proof that Osiris returned to life on
earth by being raised from the dead? In fact no ancient source says any
such thing about Osiris.1262

In my reading of the myth of Osiris, he does not rise from the dead
back to life here on earth. Literally, he came from Hades. But this is
not a resurrection of his body. His body is still dead.1263
How do we know Osiris is not raised physically? His body is still a
corpse, in a tomb.1264
My views do not rest on having read a single article by Jonathan Z.
Smith and a refusal to read the primary sources. As I read them, there is
no resurrection of the body of Osiris. And that is the standard view
among experts in the field.1265
Oh, really? Lets just take a look at what many experts in the field
have to say on the matter of Osiris and Egyptian resurrection of the body.
One of the afore-cited heathen was so kind as to define for us just what a
real resurrection entails- the body which DIED was the same body
which was RAISED, and that the person returned to life IN THEIR
ORIGINAL BODY [sic].1266 I have no problem with that, nor would
any ancient Egyptian, and thus nor should any experts in the field. That
being the case, I shall begin first with the physical, corporeal, biological,
bodily nature of this resurrection, and afterwards shall cover the location
of occurrence (i.e. here on earth). To start us off, there is the
aforementioned Egyptologist, Professor Bob Brier, also known as Mr.
Mummy. In 1994, Dr. Brier became the first person in 2,000 years to
mummify a human cadaver in the ancient Egyptian style.1267 He is one
of the worlds foremost experts on the subject of ancient Egyptian
mummification.1268 So if there is anyone who can explain
mummification, what the Egyptians believed about it, and why they
practiced it, that person is Dr. Brier. He states:

The Great Courses, Bob
?pid=101 (accessed September 29, 2013).
Long Island University, Bob Brier,
(accessed April 17, 2013).
The Book of the Dead is the most important of all Egyptian
religious texts. Its main goal was to protect
and reanimate the mummy for continued existence in the next
world. It was actually called The Going Forth by Day because it was
intended to enable the deceased to get up again and resume
activities. ... Aside from general hymns, specific spells described
words to be spoken over the mummy at the time of burial, and
because the Egyptians were resurrectionists, it was important that
the body was intact and functioning. Of all the
spells reanimating the body , perhaps the most important was the
Opening of the Mouth ceremony.
Dr. Bob Brier, in Mummies Around the World: An Encyclopedia
of Mummies in History, Religion, and Popular Culture 1269
Because the next world was going to be a continuation of this
one, you would need pretty much the same stuff you had in this
worldclothing, food, furniture, even your dog. In 1906, the great
Italian Egyptologist Ernesto Schiaparelli discovered the intact tomb
of the architect Kha and his wife Merit. There, neatly folded, were
all the clothes the couple would need for their journey to the
afterlife complete with patches sewn on by Khas wife. In one
corner of the tomb was the board game that Kha and Merit played
in the evenings, and with it the stools they sat on. Because Kha was
an architect, he couldnt think of going to the next world without
the cubit stick he used to measure his building projects. Its all
there in the Egyptian Museum in Torino, Italy, packed by Kha and
Merit for the future. They were literally going to take it with them.
But what good were all the clothes you had packed for eternity if
you couldnt wear them? You needed your body. Enter
Dr. Bob Brier and Dr. Jean-Pierre Houdin, The Secret of the
Great Pyramid: How One Mans Obsession Led to the Solution of
Ancient Egypts Greatest Mystery 1270
There were two aspects to the preparation of a body for
eternitythe physical and the magical. At the same time
various physical stages of preparation were being completed,
magical rites were enacted. Only a prescribed combination of the

Bob Brier, The Book of the Dead (anthology), in Mummies Around the
World: An Encyclopedia of Mummies in History, Religion, and Popular Culture,
ed. M. Cardin (Santa Barbara: ABC-CLIO, LLC, 2015), 36, 38. (Emph. added.)
Bob Brier and Jean-Pierre Houdin, The Secret of the Great Pyramid: How
One Mans Obsession Led to the Solution of Ancient Egypts Greatest Mystery
(New York: HarperCollins Publishers LLC, 2008), 13. (Emph. added.)
two could preserve the body for eternity. To fully understand the
rites of mummification, one must know the Egyptian myth of the
god Osiris, who is the archetype of all mummies .
Dr. Bob Brier, Ancient Egyptian Magic 1271
So now this comes back around to Osiris specifically.
[Isis] hovered over Osiris body and brought him back to life
by saying magical words. From this myth came the practice of
mummification. The Egyptians were preoccupied with the dead
body and with the notion that it must be intact and have a proper
burial for resurrection. Even the practice of burying the dead in
anthropoid coffins may have come from the part of the myth about
the chest constructed to Osiris measurement. Osiris, who achieved
immortality, became the god of the dead, and all Egyptians wished
to join him. This is why in the Book of the Dead and in other
magical spells dealing with the dead the deceased is often called
Osiris or his name is joined with that of Osiris (for example, Osiris-
Ani). This is so that the deceased, too, will resurrect.
So again, as covered in the previous chapter, Osiris was not innately
immortal. He had to acheive immortality, hence why he even died in the
first place.
Isis hovers over a complete body. Finally, and most important,
she speaks the proper words and he resurrects. He retains the
same body he inhabited while alive.
Dr. Bob Brier, Egyptian Mummies: Unraveling the Secrets of
an Ancient Art 1272
Read that again. Let it really sink in.
He retains the same body he inhabited while
alive. Mummification thus becomes essential to immortality;
the body must be preserved for the afterlife.
It doesnt get any more explicit than that. What was that again which
one of the afore-cited antagonists claimed? Ah yes, it was there

Brier (1980-2001), 68. (Emph. added.)
Bob Brier, Egyptian Mummies: Unraveling the Secrets of an Ancient
Art (New York: William Morrow & Co., 1994), 23. (Emph. added.)
is no resurrection of the body of Osiris. And that is the standard view
among experts in the field. Yet here we have a bona fide expert in the
field stating precisely the opposite. Osiris, and the deceased who
identified with him, did indeed resurrect bodily from the dead. Some
readers might retort but thats only one scholar- big deal. Very well
then, as the old saying goes- theres plenty more where that came
Once at the tomb the major rite performed was the ritual of
the Opening of the Mouth. This was designed originally to activate
statues and bring them to life but was later also transferred to the
treatment of coffins and mummies, which, for ritual purposes,
amounted to the same thing. Its function in the mortuary cult was
the all-important restoration of bodily functions to the deceased
such as speech, sight, hearing, and smell so that the inanimate
corpse was converted once more into a living
being. From this point it enjoyed the corporeal attributes needed
to take the deceased through the journey to the afterlife and
maintain them there in the fullness of their earthly being.
Dr. Alan B. Lloyd, Ancient Egypt: State and Society 1273
So again, bodily resurrection occurred in the tomb, which was here
on earth, and then from that point they journeyed to the afterlife.
Keeping with that theme:
The mummy rite turned around two themes: the animation
or reanimation of the statue or mummy (opening the mouth, eyes,
ears and nose, knitting together the bones, assembling the limbs,
attaching the head, establishing the heart in its place), and
purification and presentation of offerings (food, drink, clothing) to
ensure the continued survival of the newly (re)animated being.
The bodily members of the deceased were believed to be
reconstituted and revivified and he was allowed to travel to the
Land of the Dead.
Dr. Gregory Glazov, The Bridling of the Tongue and the Opening
of the Mouth in Biblical Prophecy 1274
In the Egyptian funerary world, the dead can retain frequent
contact with the world of the living through post-funerary rites,

Lloyd (2014), 227. (Emph. added.)
Glazov (2001), 363-64. (Emph. added.)
since he can be resurrected within his body. In general, death and
resurrection are two basic components of the Egyptian culture.
There is nothing in the Alexandrian hypogea that implies a
change in the ideas about the fate of the deceased. The treatment
of the body remains Greek: hence, unlike the Egyptian tradition,
there is no resurrection within the actual body of the dead. The
meeting between the two worlds concerns issues of memory and
ancestry rather than actual communication with the resurrected
dead, as is the case with Egyptian funerary practices.
Dr. Kyriakos Savvopoulos, Alexandrea in Agypto: The Role of the
Egyptian Tradition in the Hellenistic and Roman Periods 1275
Now recall what I had stated earlier about how resurrected
Egyptiansincluding Osiris, whom they emulatedwere in fact
believed to be able to leave the netherworld and physically return to the
world of the living here on earth. Continuing:
Horus, having resurrected his father, adorned him with the
fillet, and defeated his enemies; Osiris is free to leave the
Underworld. ... The ba of Osiris enters into the disk, which in turn
illuminates and revivifies the corpse of Osiris. The proper use of
the Great Decree will enable Osiris to manifest over his own
corpse, an allusion to this ability of Re
to resurrect his physical remains through the light of his disk.
Dr. Colleen Manassa, The Late Egyptian Underworld: Sarcophagi
and Related Texts from the Nectanebid Period 1276
Osiris comes back to life to become not only the ruler of the
underworld but also a model for all the deceased. Osiriss fate
incorporates both the weakness and the triumph of the
physical. The material body disintegrates into dust, but the annual
rebirth seen in nature each spring bears witness to the bodys
ultimate triumph over death. The belief that the body lives on after
death is one of the most salient features of Egyptian conceptions of
the hereafter.
Dr. Erik Hornung, Idea into Image: Essays on Ancient
Egyptian Thought 1277

Kyriakos Savvopoulos, Alexandrea in Aegypto: The Role of the Egyptian
Tradition in the Hellenistic and Roman Periods- Ideology, Culture, Identity, and
Public Life (Leiden: Leiden University, 2011), 267, 324. (Emph. added.)
Manassa (2007), 316, 415. (Emph. added.)
Hornung (1989-92), 103. (Emph. added.)
At the beginning of the upper register, Isis and Nephthys
lift the body of Osiris to initiate his resurrection.
Dr. Erik Hornung, The Ancient Egyptian Books of the
Afterlife 1278
The idea that the sun god Re becomes a ba offered New
Kingdom theologians a new solution to a long-standing problem:
how to explain adequately the relation between Re, who as the
nocturnal sun spends time in the underworld, and Osiris, the ruler
of this same underworld. According to the newfound explanation,
Re himself becomes the ba of Osiris. Uniting with the body of the
underworld god each night, he penetrates him completely with his
light and thereby awakens new life. The suns journey gives
visible proof that light can be reborn in darkness, and the body in
Dr. Erik Hornung, Idea into Image: Essays on Ancient
Egyptian Thought 1279
Here at Abydos, for the first time we see the idea
of resurrection. They had an idea already developed
of physical resurrection, which became so important.
Dr. Gnter Dreyer, in National Geographic Special: Egyptian
Underworld 1280
It is well known that the concept of life in the hereafter is
based on the physical resurrection of the mummy, the preservation
of the individual consciousness, (called by the Book of the Dead
knowing ones name) and of the family.
Dr. Maya Mller, in Orientalia Lovaniensia Analecta: Proceedings
of the Ninth International Congress of Egyptologists, Volume II

The ancient Egyptians carried out mummification, the artificial

preservation of the body, to ensure the survival of the body after
death. They believed that the dead body could be reanimated.

Hornung (1999), 87. (Emph. added.)
Hornung (1989-92), 107-10, 168. (Emph. added.)
Gnter Dreyer, in National Geographic Special: Egypt Underworld, dir. N.
Donnelly (Washington, D.C.: National Geographic Television, 2009).
Maya Mller, Braids for Paradise from Dynastic Egypt to the Islamic
Middle Ages, in Orientalia Lovaniensia Analecta: Proceedings of the Ninth
International Congress of Egyptologists, Volume II, ed. J.C. Goyon and C. Cardin
(Leuven: Peeters Publishers 2007), 1345. (Emph. added.)
Dr. Salima Ikram, in UCLA Encyclopedia of Egyptology 1282
Pyramid Texts are carved in vertical columns in sunk relief.
They are frequently painted green or blue-green, alluding to the
Osirian colour of rebirth, as well as to the sky to which the king
ascends when he enters the eternal divine realm and
becomes identified with Osiris. The spells are to aid the king in his
ascent to the sky and to his reception into the kingdom of the gods.
There are three main types of utterances: protective spells that
keep the king safe from scorpions, snakes and other dangerous
creatures; spells for the deceased to use in the Afterworld when
using boats, ladders, etc. to travel safely; and the last set of
incantations which is associated with the execution of funerary
rituals, such as the Opening of the Mouth, a ritual
that reanimates the mummy and restores its senses. ... The lector
priest would recite magical spells and prayers, while touching the
mummy's nose, mouth, eyes, ears and chest, thereby restoring its
five senses. Once the mummy was reanimated it joined the
mourners for one last time in a funerary feast, equivalent to a wake.
Opening of the Mouth: Ceremony which served
to reanimate the corpse.
Dr. Salima Ikram, Death and Burial in Ancient Egypt 1283
It was essential that the mummies of the deceased continued
to function just as they had in life. ... The Opening of the Mouth
ritual continues to be a fascinating topic of study, as it reveals much
about the religion of the ancient Egyptians. It shows their desire
to reanimate the body to provide the deceased with offerings in the
Marissa A. Stevens, Mummies Around the World: An
Encyclopedia of Mummies in History, Religion, and Popular
Culture 1284
Isis, the devoted wife of Osiris whose body she
reconstituted and restored after death, was the divine patroness of

Salima Ikram, Mummification, in UCLA Encyclopedia of Egyptology, ed. W.
Wendrich (Los Angeles: 2010) 2.
(Emph. added.)
Ikram (2003), 39, 186, 206. (Emph. added.)
Marissa A. Stevens, Opening of the Mouth, in Mummies Around the
World: An Encyclopedia of Mummies in History, Religion, and Popular Culture,
ed. M. Cardin (Santa Barbara: ABC-CLIO, LLC, 2015), 331-32. (Emph. added.)
Dr. Ann Rosalie David, in Egyptian Mummies and Modern
Science 1285
It was the power of Ras name that allowed Isis to return
Osiriss reassembled body to life. The body was preserved so
that the entire personbody, name, shadow, ba, and kawould
survive and enjoy blessedness in the realm of the dead. Part of
the preparation of the tomb, at least from the New Kingdom
onward, was the Opening of the Mouth ceremony. This ritual
was among the most ancient and important in Egypt, since it made
it possible for something to live, or in the case of the dead body, to
live again. Belief in divine recompense after death also
necessitated a belief in resurrection, the return of the body to
life. The Egyptians believed the self could not exist in any real
sense apart from the bodythis was why those in Sheol were mere
shadows. Life in any real sense necessarily meant the life enjoyed
as an embodied person. In the resurrection, the shades of those
chosen to awake to everlasting life would be reunited with their
dead bodies, bodies given life once again by the divine
breath/spirit. But what can we say about the religious influence of
Egypt, Mesopotamia, and Syria-Palestine at the beginning of the
first century BCE, before the Roman conquest? Perhaps most
important, the goddess Isis became the central deity of a mystery
religion more widespread than any other in the ancient
Mediterranean world. The relevant aspects of Isiss divine character
for her mystery rituals were first her role in Osiriss death
and resurrection and second her protection of Horus, both as a
child and in his contests with Seth. Together these mythic roles
represented Isiss power over life and death.
Dr. Glenn S. Holland, Gods in the Desert: Religions of the
Ancient Near East 1286
The corporeal resurrection of the deceased comes about when
the ba visits the tomb and unites itself with the mummy. When
the sun-god shines in the darkness and speaks his creative word the
sarcophagi or shrines are opened and the mummies arise from
their sleep of death. They throw off the mummy-bandages that had
protected them and take food and clothing and all that was
necessary in the new life. Mummy-bindings had to be removed
at the moment of resurrection. Mummification prepared

A. Rosalie David, The ancient Egyptian medical system, Egyptian
Mummies and Modern Science, ed. A.Rosalie David (Cambridge: Cambridge
University Press, 2008), 183. (Emph. added.)
Holland (2009), 49, 59, 64, 256, 282-83. (Emph. added.)
the body for resurrection in the Underworld and protected it in
its journey to that mysterious space. Mummy-bindings were both
protective attire for the space traveler and, at the same time, the
bonds of death. They may be called the bonds of Seth, because
Seth was the god of death, who brought death into the world by
murdering Osiris. The thoroughness with which the Egyptians are
wrapped makes understandable such special prayers as the one
written on a coffin in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New
York, directing the goddess Isis to free the mummy from its
wrappings at the moment of resurrection.
Corporeal resurrection was not restricted to the privileged
members of the elite who were buried with all the ritual pomp and
circumstance on earth and who were mummified. Textual
evidence indicates that those who were not mummified on earth
could also repeat life in the Underworld. At the word of the sun-
god they also arose bodily from the dead.
Dr. Herman Te Velde, in Mummies & Magic: The Funerary
Arts of Ancient Egypt 1287
Osiris provided a model whereby the effects of the rupture
caused by death could be totally reversed, since that deity
underwent a twofold process of resurrection.
Mummification reconstituted his corporeal self and justification
against Seth his social self, re-integrating him and restoring his
status among the gods. Through the mummification rites, which
incorporated an assessment of the deceaseds character, the
Egyptians hoped to be revived and justified like Osiris. These rites
endowed them with their own personal Osirian aspect or form,
which was a mark of their status as a member of the gods
entourage in the underworld. Thus the deceased underwent a
twofold resurrection as well. Not only were their limbs
reconstituted, and mental and physical faculties restored, but they
entered into a personal relationship with Osiris that simultaneously
situated them within a group. On the one hand, he joins the
retinue of Osiriss worshipers; on the other, through the efficacy of
the mummification rites, which reconstitute his corporeal and
social selves, he follows in Osiriss footsteps by undergoing
the same twofold process of resurrection previously undergone by
that god.
The Egyptian conception of the individual, although
essentially monistic, nevertheless comprised two elements:

Herman Te Velde, Funerary Mythology, in Mummies & Magic: The
Funerary Arts of Ancient Egypt, eds. S. DAuria, P. Lacovara, C.H. Roehrig
(Boston: Museum of Fine Arts, 1988), 29, 33-36. (Emph. added.)
a corporeal self and a social self. Death destroyed the integrity of
both, and in order for the deceased to return to full life, both had
to be reconstituted. It was not sufficient for a dead person
to recover the use of his mental and physical faculties; he had to
undergo a process of social reintegration as well, being accepted
among the hierarchy of gods and blessed spirits in the afterlife.
With corporeal and social connectivity thus restored, he acquired
a new Osirian form. In this form the deceased enjoyed not only the
benefits of bodily rejuvenation, but also the fruits of a relationship
with a specific deity that simultaneously situated him within a
Dr. Mark J. Smith, in UCLA Encyclopedia of Egyptology 1288
Three basic conceptions underlie all ancient Egyptian beliefs
and practices concerning the afterlife. This applies to the Graeco-
Roman Period as well as earlier periods of Egyptian history .1289
The first conception is that of the continued survival of those who
die as physical or corporeal entities.
The first of these conceptions explains why the Egyptians were
so concerned to preserve the bodies of their dead. By themselves,
the sands and the hot, dry climate of Egypt were effective
preserving agents. However, the Egyptians developed elaborate
techniques of embalming or mummification to further the desired
Because the Egyptians believed that the deceased survived
in corporeal form, they felt it necessary to make provision for their
daily needs. From their point of view, the nature of posthumous
existence was the same, in its practical aspects at least, as that of life
before death. Resurrection in Graeco-Roman Egypt was a bodily
resurrection, and it was accomplished chiefly by means of rituals
and operations actually performed on the body.
It will be clear from the survey presented above that body and
resurrection were closely linked in Graeco-Roman Egypt.
The resurrection in which the Egyptians believed was a bodily
resurrection, involving a physical entity which had been justified,
that is examined and declared to be free of sin.
Dr. Mark J. Smith, in The Human Body in Death and

Smith (2008), 1-4. (Emph. added.)
Be sure not to miss that point, what follows also applies to earlier periods
of Egyptian history, not just the Greco-Roman Period.
Smith (2009), 27-39. (Emph. added.)
In Egyptian mortuary belief, Osiris was the proto-type
of every deceased individual. Everyone would become Osiris in
death and be endowed with life by Isis. Isis was the goddess
of physical restoration. All her life-giving actions were aimed
at the body and its vitality with the result that the body of
Osiris, restored and brought back to life.
Dr. Jan Assmann, Death and Salvation in Ancient Egypt 1291
The ancient solar mystery of Osiris and Re becoming one
[was] the prototype of human resurrection.
Dr. John C. Darnell, The Enigmatic Netherworld Books of
the Solar-Osirian Unity1292
This union of ba and corpse produced resurrection, just as the
uniting of the sun god and Osiris in the underworld each night
rejuvenated both gods. On account of this doctrine, it was essential
that the corpse should be transformed through mummification
into an eternal, perfect body which could be reunited with the ba.
Dr. John H. Taylor, Death and the Afterlife in Ancient Egypt

The three sarcophagi all display essentially the same design

scheme, with a uniform distribution of texts that tell of the function
of the sarcophagus as an agent of bodily resurrection. The texts
from the three sarcophagi, largely parallel in both content and
placement, stress themes that enhance the process
of physical resurrection. Mummification in itself entailed a
mythological reference to the resurrection of Osiris.
Dr. Lana Troy, in Thutmose III: A New Biography1294
In mythology, Isis, the wife of Osiris, and Nephthys, his sister,
searched for the body of Osiris after he had been murdered by
Seth. When they had found it, they restored Osiris to life.
Dr. Lorna Oakes and Lucia Gahlin, Ancient Egypt1295
Since Isis and Nephthys mourned the dead Osiris
before bringing him back to life, the presence of these
goddesses identified the deceased with Osiris, thus guaranteeing his

Assmann (2001-05), 33-35, 66, 116, 364. (Emph. added.)
Darnell (2004), 481. (Emph. added.)
Taylor (2001), 23. (Emph. added.)
Troy (2006), 155, 156, 164. (Emph. added.)
Oakes (2002-05), 227. (Emph. added.)
resurrection Tutankhamuns successor, King Ay, is shown
performing the opening of the mouth ritual on the royal mummy
in order to reanimate the body.
Dr. Gay Robins, The Art of Ancient Egypt: Revised
Just as Osiris was killed and rose to new life, so the dead king,
identified with Osiris, through the recitation of the spell is made
alive again. In other words, what we have here is
the bodily resurrection of the dead king.
The mythological revivification of Osiris by the goddess Nut,
known from the Pyramid Texts, is here applied to the deceased
Nebseny, the gesture of spreading over the body of the deceased
indicating the act of revivification. Other texts, especially those of
the later period, speak of making to live, animating (sanx),
the corpse, just as they speak of animating the Ba, the Akh, the
heart, the Ka, and the Shadow. Thus it can be said that the
Egyptian believed that the corpse could be revivified, a belief which
was undoubtedly based upon a ritual identification with the
revivification of Osiris. If in its transit from the temporal
existence the body was ritually revivified, the Egyptian knew no
final death. Should this restoration of the body fail to be achieved,
the body would remain an inanimate corpse and would suffer the
fatal second death. A special spell, chapter 44 of the Book of the
Dead, was provided to save the deceased from this final
destruction. A passage in the Coffin Texts read: I am risen as king
of the gods and I shall not die again. Primitive man never
considered death a natural or normal event. The Egyptian of the
mortuary literature denied the sting of death and continued to
live not because he believed in the existence of an immortal soul,
a thought which could appeal to the Greek mind but
could not satisfy the aspirations of the man on the Nile, but
because all of his faculties, physical as well as psychic, continued to
exist; he lived eternally as a man, in the fullest meaning of the word.
Dr. Louis V. abkar, A Study of the Ba Concept in Ancient
Egyptian Texts1297
After the resurrection the body can function again and eat the
food. Without this resurrection the body is powerless and suffers
hunger and thirst. The rigidity of death is
finished. The body functions again. The dead wishes the

Gay Robins, The Art of Ancient Egypt: Revised Edition (London: The British
Museum Press, 1997-2008), 115, 158. (Emph. added.)
abkar (1968), 82, 155-56. (Emph. added.)
mummy bandages to be loosed in order to be free to execute the
functions of his body. The bandages which are on my intestines
are opened. The mummy bandage is thrown off, so that the dead
may rise.
Dr. Jan Zandee, Death as an Enemy: According to Ancient
Egyptian Conceptions1298
So no, clearly it is not the case that there is no resurrection of the
body of Osiris. And that is the standard view among experts in the
field. Things are quite the opposite, in fact. And these scholars have no
choice but to acknowledge that Osirian resurrection in ancient Egypt was
believed to be a physical, corporeal, biological resurrection of the same
body which had died and which took place in the tomb here on earth-
for the primary sources time & time again declare as much, with
absolutely no ambiguity or room for interpretation.

Fig. 161: If the so-called soul is roosting in the tree to the left, then clearly what is
rising from the bier to new life is not the soul, but is actually the body.

Zandee (1960), 13, 80, 108. (Emph. added.)
Fig. 162

Fig. 163: The resurrected Osiris regains his bodily senses, such as smell.

Fig. 164: The resurrected Osiris getting ready to lift himself up off his bier.

Fig. 165: Osiris rises, yet there's no inert body still lying on the bier beneath him as he
rises, because this is not some soul leaving a body- it is Osiris rising in his body.

Fig. 166

Fig. 167

Fig. 168: Horus helps the fully risen Osiris stand up on his feet, an odd thing to do if
Osiris were just some incorporeal ghost here, which, of course, he is not.
Now shall be quoted the primary sources concerning the physical,
bodily nature of Osirian resurrection, and then afterwards even more
sources demonstrating that the location of that bodily resurrection
was here on earth. I reiterate that the setting was here on earth, so that
you the reader will bear that in mind as you read the following texts.
Osiris awakes, the languid god wakes up, the god stands up,
the god has power in his body.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 690 20921299
That's quite explicit and concise. No ambiguity about it. In fact, other
religions have claimed bodily resurrection of their own deity based on
scriptures even less explicit than that. For example, in The Good
Shepherds religion, the most explicit scripture (of the very few
examples) I've been able to find so far which specifically portrays him as
resurrecting in his body is the one which says- Destroy this temple, and
in three days I will raise it up. But he was speaking of the temple of his
body. O how members of that religion would love to have a passage in
their canon so explicit as The Lord awakes, the languid one wakes up,
the Son of God stands up, the Lord has power in His body. But alas,
there is no passage in their canon of such quality to compete with PT
2092 and many of the other funerary texts that shall be presented. And if
they were so fortunate as to have a passage like that in their scriptures,
there is no doubt that they would take it to mean exactly what it says it
means and use it as evidence of The Good Shepherds bodily
resurrection (as they should), rather than ignore it and claim that his body
was merely preserved while his disembodied soul went on to reign in the
afterlife (as they've dubiously claimed of Osiris).
Both in quality and in quantity, the scriptures about The Good
Shepherds bodily resurrection are far inferior to the ancient Egyptian
primary texts about Osiris bodily resurrection here on earth. If someone
proposed something as ridiculous as (akin to what antagonists have
claimed) The Good Shepherds dead body just needed to be protected so
that he could be raised over in the afterlife rather than here on earth- that
person should be expected to show where in this his scriptures they are
getting such a strange idea from & how they reconcile that with passages

Faulkner (1969), 298. (Emph. added.)
like the one quoted above (temple of his body) which unambiguously
describe a bodily resurrection here on earth. Likewise, antagonists should
be expected to do the same with their equally dubious claims about
Osirian resurrection.
Anyway, to really get this section rolling, I think it'll be most
amusing to start with the texts that most directly contradict statements
from the antagonists quoted earlier, such as Mr. Chi-Rhos Osiris does
not rise to his former state and go on living.1300
O Osiris the King, stand up! Horus has caused you to stand up
You shall come to your former condition, for the gods have knit
together your face for you.
Pyramid Texts, Utterance 369 640-43 1301
So evidently, Osiris most certainly did rise to his former state. This
is also seen The Songs of Isis and Nephthtys 2.5:
Mayest thou travel around heaven and earth in thy former
The Coffin Texts likewise stated-
Geb will open for you your blind eyes, he will straighten for
you your bent knees, there will be given to you your heart (ib)
which you had from your mother, your heart (HAty) which belongs
to your body, your bA which was upon earth, your corpse which
was upon the ground. There will be bread for your body, water for
your throat, and sweet air for your nostrils. The owners of tombs
will be kindly to you, the owners of coffins will come to you, they
will bring to you your members which were far from you, when you
are re-established in your original shape.
Coffin Texts, Spell 20 I, 56-58 1303
So that leaves no ambiguity. The former shape, the former
condition, the original shape Osiris had prior to death is that of his
living physical body. A body complete with eyes that can see, knees that
can walk, a heart that beats, a body that eats bread, a throat that drinks

Faulkner (1969), 122. (Emph. added.)
Raymond O. Faulkner, The Bremner-Rhind Papyrus: I. A. The Songs of Isis
and Nephthys, The Journal of Egyptian Archaeology 22, no. 2 (1936): 126.
(Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1973), 11. (Emph. added.)
water, nostrils that breathe, etc. Of course, its more concisely stated
again in the following:
Raise yourself [in] your shape, for that is your body.
Coffin Texts, Spell 847 VII, 511304
Hi, Osiris. Thou renewest thy youth, thou renewest thy youth,
forever and ever in thy rejuvenation, in thy rejuvenation, Osiris, in
the sky. Thou dawnest in the eastern Horizon of the Sky. Thou
resumest thy form of yesterday.
Book of the Dead, Spell 162 variant S 2 1305
This spell restores Osiris to his youth. In his youth, was Osiris an
inert lifeless mummy? Of course he wasnt. In his youth, was Osiris an
incorporeal ghost? Of course not, and besides that, it has always been my
understanding that traditionally ghosts do not age, and hence would have
no need for a spell like this. Osiris here resumes the form he had
yesterday, just like the sun which dawns in the east- the same today
and tomorrow just as it was yesterday. The sun was physically active
yesterday and is still physically active today, so likewise yesterday (i.e.
the past) Osiris was alive and healthy in his physical body. This also
maintains the theme that Osiris was restored to his form of
yesterday/former shape/former condition/original shape he had
before death, which was his living body. But he was not merely restored
to his original state, he also went on to surpass it-
The (re)assembled (members) (of Osiris N.) surpass,
they surpass his original state.
Book of the Dead, Spell 161 S 41306
And this makes sense, for as covered earlier, after resurrection the
body is transfigured to a glorified, divine state. Anyway, continuing
Usher him in to me, uncover for him my injured privy parts, I
let him see my woundsso says Osiris.
Coffin Texts, Spell 36 I, 1421307

Faulkner (1978), 32. (Emph. added.)
T.G. Allen (1974), 158. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 157. (Emph. added.)
Faulkner (1973), 26. (Emph. added.)
The talk of showing the wounds of Osiris' slain body reminds me of
a story in which The Good Shepherd1308 likewise told a certain
doubting follower of his to come and see the wounds of his risen body
as firsthand proof that his resurrection actually occurred, and that he was
not just some disembodied ghost.
Come, let us lament Osiris since he is far from us. Rise, rise in
the morning now that you are a mummy.
Coffin Texts, Spell 52 I, 2431309
So, yet again, it is the mummy that rises- the physical body which
had died.
I bring for you your heart into your body.
Coffin Texts, Spell 28 I, 80 1310
You have your heart, and it will not be seized among those
who are in strife.
Coffin Texts, Spell 48 I, 212 1311
Hail to you, my father Osiris I put your heart into
your body for you, that you may remember what you have
Coffin Texts, Spell 62, I 2651312
Awake, Osiris Raise yourself in your name of Raiser, stand
up in your name of Stander, receive your head and be glad.
Coffin Texts, Spell 67, I 282-871313
The heads a body part.
Stand up on your intact feet Live, Osiris!
Coffin Texts, Spell 74 I, 312-131314
I gather the bones of Osiris together and I make his flesh to
flourish daily, I make his limbs hale daily.

See p.17.
Faulkner (1973), 52. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 18. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 44. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 58. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 62-63. (Emph. added.)
Ibid. 70. (Emph. added.)
Coffin Texts, Spell 80 II, 421315
May you have power in your heart (ib), may you have power in
your heart (HAty), may you have power in your arms, may you have
power in your legs.
Coffin Texts, Spell 225 III, 222-241316
They remove the dimness of your sight and the wrinkles which
are on your limbs; they open your blind eyes, they extend your
contracted fingers.
Coffin Texts, Spell 226 III, 254-561317
May your head be raised, may your heart live, may you possess
your flesh ... on your body, may you ever be in the Following, may
you live.
Coffin Texts, Spell 230 III, 2981318
May your head be raised, may your brow be made to live,
may you speak for your own body, may you be a god, may you
always be a god.
Coffin Texts, Spell 232 III, 3001319
You have your legs; lift up your body, gather
your members together, that you may tread out the paces to the
tribunal, to the place where the gods are, that they may give you
the fluid which issued from you. May you never be inert, having it.
Coffin Texts, Spell 235 III, 3021320
All the lower portions