Awakening Osiris: The Egyptian Book of the Dead by Normandi Ellis
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
This could easily become one of my favorite books. The book is poetic and moving drawing the reader into the world of ancient Egyptian mystery. Awakening Osiris is not just another translation of the "Egyptian Book of the Dead" it goes well beyond that. New evidence has been brought to light regarding these works and this has been duly incorporated. Besides taking things beyond just another translation with new information this book is a poetic reinterpretation. Poetic reinterpretations always make the work come alive and in this books case it also awakens your own inner power. Reading this book makes me want to get the Budge edition just to compare notes. This was the first serious book on Egypt that I have ever read. It will be interesting to make comparisons. With this book I am in luck there is a solid bibliography in the back for further research.
Egyptians mythology does have parallels with the Hebrew Old Testament. Some might say that Egypt inspired the Hebrew bible as the Hebrew lived there as slaves or migrant workers at least. Judeo-Christian fanatics will see it as the other way around. There is a stress on honesty, truthfulness and a hardy work ethic. The goal of our life is to live a life that is worth living and our works are the sacrifice we offer to death and the gods. The power of speech is our power to create and from this all magic arises. Egyptian magick was called Heka. Heka was making sounds or incantations to effect reality. As the deities are made of Holy ether so are we as well. The gods live inside of us. We are god and part god.
As noted earlier this work is what I would call a poetic reinterpretation of the Book of the Dead. I did notice some similiar wording in the Egyptian prayers that was eerily similar to the wording of certain Hebrew prayers that I have read. I wonder if this is an influence that crept in because the author studied Judaism or was in it like this originally and the Hebrews copied it or maybe drank from the same source. Who knows. The word an ain soph crept in. Ain Soph is a Hebrew concept word which I doubt the Egyptians were familiar with at the time. Modernity has it's influences.
Book of the Dead is a misnomer as the original Egyptian translates to 'The Book of Coming forth by day" The book was read whole or in parts upon the death of an individual. It traces the history of Seth Murdering Osiris, Isis putting Osiris back together and mothering the child Horus. The battle between Horus and Seth is related in quite vivid detail. After that the book takes the reader on a journey through the underworld and to Osiris's eventual return. The introduction gives over some real good pertinent facts for layman, scholar and pagan alike. Enjoy.
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