Ancient Origins IRAQ Tour

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Goddess Nut, supported by the god of the air Shu; the earth god Geb is below them (Public Domain)

The Demonic Calendar Of Ancient Egypt

The Egyptians, like many cultures, had no generic word for ‘demon’. Although some words, such as Akhw, get very close.  Etymologically, the Greek derived term ‘daemon’ or ‘demon’ means divider or alloter, and from Homer’s time onwards, it referred to an operator of unexpected and intrusive events in a person’s life. Unlike Olympian gods, a daemon was an impersonal thing, unpredictable, anonymous and often frightful in manifestation, thus connected with fate.

Egyptian scene with demons (Image: Courtesy Chris Morgan)

Egyptian scene with demons (Image: Courtesy Chris Morgan)

Plato, perhaps influenced by Egyptian and Hindu thought, added a new concept of the ‘guardian daemon’ that accompanied a person in life, and postmortem, acted as one’s judge or advocate. Contemporary magical practitioners often describe a spiritual entity known as the Holy Guardian Angel, that becomes attached to or comes into existence at one’s birth or conception.

The Living, The Dead And The Gods

The ancient Egyptians recognized three categories of sentient beings: The Ankhew, the Akhew and the Neterew which can be translated as the Living, the Dead and the Gods. All three have their good and bad sides. In fact, Egyptian texts present much information about the ancient fear of attack from night demons, but because of a general prejudice amongst old guard Egyptologists, much of this information was buried in obscure academic publications.


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