Modern Egyptian Ritual Magick

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The Peril and Necessity of Astral Travel

As Nuit herself is the massless bridge between all worlds, the intelligence that fills the void between stars, any travel to worlds beyond our own is necessarily through her body. In the movement of the stars, the endless network of connecting tunnels or conduits are traced. These are the very paths that the dead aspire to wander; the paths undertaken by those few who are blessed or cursed with true dreaming; the roads that the likes of Ast and Asar travelled in order to emerge in our world as gods. (An essay on this matter is available.)

How can we aspire to travel through the vastness of the sky, to visit the distant worlds and unimaginable territories beyond the night? The very laws of physics-- Maat as the Egyptians might call them, the 'way that things are and must be'-- seem to hold us down, trapped at the very bottom of an invisible gravity well. We are confined between the kingdom of Yesterday (Asar) and Tomorrow (Heru). We are locked in the present. This benign tyranny may be justified, as it holds the masses in the safe shadow of the two great fathers. But there are those among us who cannot accept the gift of their protection, who yearn to free themselves and face the abyss on its own terms, for a single chance at ascension.

Travel through Nuit's gates is essential for this ascension. The very symbol of divinity and eternal life, the ankh, is nothing more than the depiction of a sandal strap; here is proof enough that mastery of distances, through unbounded travel, is requisite for attainment of the divine state.

The problems of escaping the gravity well are numerous and varied. First, there is gravity itself to contend with. This is the embrace of the Father of the Gods, Geb, pulling us to him. As is shown in an early story of the trials of Heru, however, Geb's will (heart) is weakest when he sleeps, and his mind very slow to rouse. This suggests that night-time is most propitious to astral travel-- a point that will only be reinforced by further reading.

Beyond Geb's languid but tenacious grasp there are more threats to the traveller. The most subtle of these is the obstacle of absence-- the absence of the air that we require to sustain our life. This is a problem not without a solution. Ast herself may be persuaded to aid in astral travel. For she it is who, with her great wings, provides those in her care with the cool and "sustaining" wind.

Of the further dangers of the great starry abyss, little is known. Many of those who have attained or aspired to ascension have not returned, and of those who have, much of what they attempt to communicate to us is so garbled or easily misconstrued that nothing comes of it save yet another malformed religion (Buddhism, Christianity, Thelema...). Even in Qabalistic terms, the final path to Kether is that of the Fool; and the would-be Ipsissimus who travels it becomes all but incomprehensible. Whether this is due to a loss of sanity or to the attainment of so-called supersanity, it is impossible to say. Perhaps their wits burn up on re-entry.

There are many lessons to be learned through the study of the pseudo-Boddhisattvas (which some would translate as 'idiot savants', but not I of course) and their avatars (the so-called prophets), even if those lessons serve only as examples of how NOT to attain enlightenment. What would best serve us would be to return to the stories of how the gods of our world immigrated to be among us, leaving their native lands behind, that they might serve us as kings.

Manuals of so-called astral travel abound in our time, telling tales of sophisticated dream-work and the powerful implications of the human imagination. While these techniques may be fine for honing the creative potential of the mind, or for training the symbolic reflexes, most of them have very little to do with any sort of exploration of the world beyond the birdcage of the cranium. A distinction must be made: dreaming and imagining allow the mind to travel between 'worlds'; science may provide the escape velocity for removing ourselves from the physicality of the gravity well; but to travel the inky Veil of Nuit is to set the very soul on a course through the potentialities of the unknown universe.

These cautions and suggestions now lead us to the matter of exactly how one might approach travel through the Veil of Nuit.

In the "Tep Zepi", or First Times, Nuit and Geb were together, wife and husband, in a sexual embrace. Shu, god of the wind that comes just before dawn, separated their bodies, and that of Nuit made the arch of the sky above. This allowed the space between the two to fill with the air that would sustain life. Now in the mind of the Egyptian absolutely everything was a cycle, from the annual inundation of the Nile, to the rising of the sun-- even as far as the creation of the world. Each day when the sun set, the safety of the created world order was threatened by the powers of darkness. And each morning, the world was created anew. The god that is the wind that comes before dawn, separates the bodies of Nuit, the sky, and Geb, the earth. It becomes clear, then, that by night, Nuit and Geb return to each other, to their primeval embrace. With an understanding of the goddess herself, one has but to climb the cold, dark sinews of her body as it reclines against that of her husband while the Eye of God passes through the underworld. The earth is content; asleep, and in the arms of his eternal lover. One has but to secure his permission, to barely rouse him from his sleep, to be granted leave of the power of gravitation. Then one has to learn to see the body of Nuit as she lies, and to enter her, that the spaces between stars might become as short as the spaces between footsteps. If one is endeared to Ast, then she will provide the sustaining air; to Nephthys, then the abundance of the invisible armies of the night will guide and protect.

Those who have secured such endearments between themselves and the daughters of Nuit need no more guidance than this.

All materials copyright 2003, Rev. Dr. Corey Bantik