Once universally held to be a living cult of Death, contrarily, the Egyptians were celebrants of Life. Even the heretic Pharoah, Akhenaten, symbolized the gift of life by a disk with extended rays with hands holding ‘ankhs’ (the symbol of life) in their extended grasp. This no doubt was the source of the Eleusian blessing: “Khabsem Pecht “, meaning, ‘Light (Wisdom and Life) in Extension.”

The Pyramid, that iconic symbol of ancient Egypt, was a monument to Life. Ra (the Sun God) in a golden pyramidion (capstone) at the summit of the pyramid and brilliant white limestone casing-stones down all four sides of the pyramids. Light giving Life shining in all four directions from the pyramid apex – a brilliant lighthouse across the desert sands.

In the Memphite version of the ancient Egyptian theology, ‘Nun’, the great Sea of Silence, issued forth the first Mound and the God Ptah was formed in the Divine’s own time. Then from Ptah, the Neter Neteru (God of Gods), the Neter Emnu (the Hidden God), and the rest of the Ennead of Gods – Atum, Nefertem, Sekhmet, Ra – each a force from the ‘One Issuing Force’. Thus, even though it seems like the Egyptians worshipped a whole variety of separate Gods and Goddesses, to those who understood the Mysteries there was but One God with various, subordinate, deific expressions.

Each day for the Egyptians was a celebration of Life. But, there was a recognition the Death is part of the reality of Life for that is the way of the seasons just as surely to come as the flooding of the Nile River each year following the rising of the star Sirius (Sothis), the time of planting, the time of harvest and gleaning. The assurance of continued Life beyond mortality is as sure as one’s right hand.

The ancient Egyptian peasant-farmer made offerings (Hetep) in gratitude to the Gods and the Pharoah was understood as his point of communication with the Gods (the Neteru). The Prime Minister, or Vizier, the priests and scribes daily made the land provide its bounty for all the people.

The Pharoah and his court were furnished with structures for continued post-mortal existence, where everything has an astral counterpart – weapons, food, the heart scarab for each as a guarantor of wisdom and immortality, each in death carefully prepared and equipped for the journey by boat to the afterlife. Every ancient Egyptian knew that if they had lived a balanced and justified life, no after-death hazard or trial need be feared. Not even the snake monster, Apophasis, nor the monster Ammit at the after-death trial of the life just lived where the heart was balanced against the feather of Truth over which Osiris, the God of the Underworld, officiated and the God of Wisdom, Thoth, kept the record.

In this after-death state or ‘Coming Forth by Day’, peasant and priest, Vizier and King, each knew the procedure and the different conditions needed to keep life in balance with the Gods and seasons (Maat). Time for the ancient Egyptians rotated cyclically. There was no AD or BC; just the time one Pharaoh reigned until the next succeeded him.

The world of the ancient Egyptian was One. All life was One. To equate the Egyptian’s world-view with Death is as erroneous as equating the Pyramid with Death! The Pyramid was in fact a symbol of Light and Life, a point of ‘heavenly fire’ which the Greek word ‘Pyramid’ – literally meaning ‘Fire in the Middle’ – indicates. The Spirit (‘Ba’) and Life-Force Soul (‘Ka’) formed life’s partnership on earth. The attainment of wisdom (Sai) rendered the ‘Ba’ to be an ‘Akh’ (Illuminated Spirit). The ritual paths of hymns at death were celebrated at one time in the Valley Temple (the ‘Per Ba’) before launching the deceased upon the boat journey in the tomb (‘Per Ka’). The deceased (‘Khat’) had his after-life amongst his astral possessions and endured as long as his Name (‘Ren’) and his tomb remained intact. Born of the stars, his hope was to return to them, as he bathed and greeted each dawn, arms raised, palms forward, in the cool breeze before the onset of the day’s work celebrating Life under the hot Egyptian sun.