Epilogue of Called to Egypt on the Back of the Wind
It is night. It is always night when a story is told. But this night is part of the story, envelops and transforms it, embraces the ending.
The room holds the darkness gently, the darkness holds the women. The room watches as they take their places. To the east, near the altar where the gold statue of the Buddha sits smiling, unconcerned, the woman stands who is to portray Isis, goddess of new beginnings. To the south against the high windows that receive the morning sun, stands the one who will speak for Sekhmet, the goddess with the fire of the south in her belly. To the west, just at the entrance doors, stands the one who will portray Nephthys, the goddess of the in-between times, of the subtle energies that weave in and out of dream time, connecting our sleeping and waking. To the north, beneath the tall windows, stands the woman who is to play Ma’at, the goddess who envisions our lives from beginning to end, who will at death weigh our hearts on a scale against the weight of the ostrich feather which adorns her hair, Ma’at who portrays honesty, integrity and balance. And in the centre, at the heart of the circle, stands Hathor, the goddess of love and joy. An inner circle of women surrounds Hathor, facing outward, towards the four directions. In darkness, in utter silence, they stand, waiting.
The room does not see goddesses. It sees only women. In seventy-five years, it has seen so many others come and go. First, all the men, then women and men together, now only women in a circle. The room sighs, feeling bored, unaware of the story, unimpressed with its quiet ending.
A light flares in the centre of the room, and in moment a tall candle is illumined. A voice speaks. “Tonight, I am Hathor, goddess of love and joy. I welcome you here to celebrate the gifts of our time in Egypt. Tonight we remember with joy all that we have received. We open our hearts to the gifts, to the promise, and to what may be asked of us in return. I invite you now to look towards the east, to the place of beginnings.”
The Goddess Hathor
A second flare of light and a second tall candle is illumined. A voice speaks. “Tonight, I am Isis, goddess of beginnings. I am the divine power in the womb of my mother Nut. The day of my birth is called the Child Who Is in Her Nest. I am she who finds fruit in the field. I am the mother of Horus. I am she who rises with Sothis, the star that heralds the flood. I am Queen of river, wind and sea. As goddess of beginnings, I call upon you now to dedicate to me your womb, in readiness to receive the seed of new life that the world hungers for.
The Goddess Isis
Will you open yourself to be filled with the life that is needed for your time in history? If you are willing, come forward now, and I shall anoint your hands with the sacred oil of cedar for spiritual strengthening.”
When the anointing is completed, another light flares, another tall candle is illumined, this one beneath the windows on the south side of the room. A voice speaks. “Tonight I am Sekhmet, ruler of the element of fire. I stand in the south where the sun’s fire is strongest. My name means mighty, powerful one. My heart burns with the courage of conviction. I represent the strength of will power. My ennobled passions are best used for healing and preserving others. As goddess of fire, I call upon you now to dedicate to me your belly and back, source of spiritual fire and power.
Will you open yourself to be filled with the courage and strength required to heal and preserve life on this planet at this potent time in history? If you are willing, come forward and I shall anoint you with the lotus, drawn from the water lilies of Egypt, offered for protection in the heart.”
Now a fourth light flares, and a fourth tall candle is illumined, this one on the west side of the room. “I am Nephthys, and I stand in the west, the place of the sunset, the place of what is passing away into other realms, for I am mistress of the in-between, the subtle energies. My creativity arises from the unconscious, for I represent dreams, ideals, psychic receptivity and the unknowable. I stand at the end of the finite world, the bridge to infinity. I am the one who illumines the dream time, who draws together the invisible threads that unite the seen and the unseen worlds. I am goddess of sympathy and self-sacrifice, opening my life to embrace the sufferings of others, and to ease their pain with the light of what I see. My ears hear the messages of the divine, and my throat speaks the words I hear in gentle songs of hope.
The Goddess Nepthys
Are you willing to open your ears to hear the sounds from deep within you, and to speak what you hear to give hope to the people of the planet? If you are willing, come forward and I shall anoint you with the oil of the bay leaf for purification and psychic awareness.”
On the north side of the room, a fifth light flares, and another woman speaks. “I am Ma’at, goddess of justice, honesty, integrity. I stand in the north, the place of transformation, for I represent the divine principles of cosmic order and law. I offer the gifts of harmony and balance, a life on this planet that will be transformed when it is lived in truth. On my head, I wear the ostrich feather of truth that is placed in the balance of the scales of justice when the heart is weighed in the Underworld.
The Goddess Ma’at
Are you willing to open your heart to me that it might become the heart of Ma’at, by living in truth and keeping your life in balance? If you are willing, come forward and I shall anoint you with the oil of the rose for the gift of an enlightened heart.”
Now Hathor speaks once more. “We have opened ourselves tonight to be bearers of new life in our wombs, fire in our backs and bellies, wisdom in our ears and throats, the light of justice in our hearts. As goddess of joy and love, I invite you now to open your eyes to be the eyes of Hathor, eyes that shine in the darkness and see love and joy in all things. Come forward to receive the blessing of the sacred oil of freesia, for love, peace and gentleness.”
(to be continued)