At first, an individual spiritual destiny was attributed only to the king.

But a lready in the Middle Kingdom, the higher society shared in this fate, and in the latest kingdom of Egypt, every Egyptian (at least those who had the money) could be embalmed and have a whole tomb and liturgy of the dead and thus have their im mortality guaranteed. So you see that in the beginning, to be an individual and to be more conscious than the masses w as the prerogative only of someone "chosen," either by heritage, by election or by some other means. This call, how ever, was paid for very dearly in that, in most primitive societies (as you can read in James George Frazer's "The Dying Go d"),7 a king was always killed after a certain period five, ten, maximum fifteen years. They were killed ritually, or w henever they showed signs of impotence or illness, or when things went wrong, like a big drought or a cattle disease. T he king was killed not only because he was the One, the only conscious individual of the tribe; he was killed also because he was the only human being who had connections to magical and 7The Golden Bough, part 3 (3rd edition; New York: St. Martin's Press, 1966). page_22 Page 23 divine powers. In the earliest societies he was archpriest and king all in one. And you know that our kings in Europe were "from Gottesgnaden," "by the grace of God," king of so-and-so. And even in the eighteenth century, they were still believed to have healing power: they could heal illness by touch. They were still king-priests to a certain extent, although the Pope had taken some of that power to himself. And therefore, we had the big battle in the Middle Ages between the sacerdocy and the worldly power of the imp erium. The king draws his power not only from his physical strength and from his armed support, but also from his connection with the powers of the Beyond. A most spiritualized interpretation was that of t he Chinese emperors. Up to the time of Mao, it was believed that when the emperor was in harmony with the Tao, the spir itual world principle, then things in the Chinese empire went right. And if something went wrong, for example if the Yangt ze flooded, it was the emperor who had to change his habits and do penitence in order to overcome that evil. He was , so to speak, the axis mundi, the axis around which the whole empire the whole world, for the Chinese revolved. Everyth ing depended on his right or wrong attitude. He had divine power; he was an incarnation of the central divine princ iple. If we translate this into psychological language, we can say that the king represents that aspect of the God-image, or t he Self, which has become a ruling concept in a society.

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