Upon pulling the cards for July, I again remember a story. There is an Ancient Egyptian myth that I hold close to my heart; it is the myth of Khonsu and the Princess of Bekhten. Khonsu, like Thoth, is a god of the moon, but unlike Thoth he has an origin in a (seemingly) much darker occult vibe. If Thoth can be compared to the moons light, Khonsu encompasses this same light, but also that of the dark side of the moon. In the Early Kingdom he was known in the Coffin Texts as a bloodthirsty god, “Khonsu Who Lives on Hearts”, and in the Pyramid Texts for helping the deceased king to catch and devour other gods.
Remember, in Ancient Egypt, even the “darkest” gods were revered for their unique purposes, and the Early Kingdom views of Khonsu are not literal, but metaphoric and based in more primal energetic archetypes. The devouring god of the Moon helped each seeker to “devour the gods”, or more literally, to embody and self-integrate the higher aspects which these gods possessed and could teach to mankind. Khonsu energy is leveling, and seemingly dismal, but is is truly an energy of disassembly, awareness, and acceptance. To understand this, we must think like the Egyptian mind, in which even negative forces and evil beings are praised for not just their purpose, but also for their necessity. To illustrate this, consider that their god and the judge of the dead, Osiris, was also lord and bringer of the harvest. Sometimes, the best way to illustrate a natural force, or energy, is through the most impactful depiction. Here, in Ancient Egypt, good, bad, and especially evil is relative to the moment and the circumstance, which this story will illustrate. Through this myth, and his later healing work, Khonsu earns a name as a great healing god for the New Kingdom, Not by trading in, but by transmuting the title of “devourer” and “killer”.
Around the time of Ramses III, it is unclear exactly which king, but it is known that this king was collecting tribute near the Euphrates, near what is believed to be a western portion of modern day Syria. The Prince there, of Bekhten, paid his tribute, but alongside it offered his beautiful daughter to the king. She was made his chief wife and given the name Ra-Neferu, which means “The Beauties of Ra”. Her beauty must have been godly, for this name is a godly one, as Ra is a powerful god of the sun.
About 15 years later, this same prince of Bekhten came to Thebes with an offering for the king to request aid. The daughter of the king's now queen, the same Ra-Neferu who was given as tribute, had been possessed by a demon back in Bekhten. After agreeing to grant the prince his request, the king sent his skilled physician to assess her in their town of Bekhten; this physician was named Tehuti-em-beb (after the god Thoth, AKA Tehuti). Upon his arrival in Bekhten after a long journey, the Physician found he could not exorcise the demon. He quickly returned to Egypt during the Festival of the god, Amun, (Amun is actually Khonsu's father) to ask the king to send further aid in the form of a god. The king then made his way to the temple of Khonsu to personally request such aid. After a prayerful request, the Moon God was dispatched to Bekhten with haste in the form of an idol, or statue, in which he imbued himself and his power. The journey took several months.
Upon arrival, the god Khonsu confronted the Demon residing within the princess. There was no struggle, and he simply asked the demon to leave. The unnamed demon, knowing well his own inferiority, left with no argument. He passionately requested the forgiveness of Khonsu. He also asked if a feast may be held in his (the demon's) honor before departing to the other-world. The Demon's wish was granted. After an entire day of drinking, feasting, and celebrating alongside Khonsu and the Prince, he left for the other-world feeling very satisfied. The princess had been released, but the god Khonsu remained in Bekhten for a little over three years. After this time, he set out to return to his temple in Egypt in the form of a Golden Hawk, followed by a caravan of many gifts and treasures which had been dispatched by the prince.
On the surface, this appears to be another tale in memory of the great healing, wisdom, and power of gods like Khonsu and the Egyptian kings, but Egyptian culture exists in many layers. Like all Egyptian myths and stories, whether this story is true or false does not matter. As with many other stories and texts, this tale is laced with instructions for self-realization and liberation. We, as individuals, must relentlessly harness the introspective power (like that of the moon) to create awareness of our “inner demons” and release them. This is step one. Step two, is to then honor the demons. Why? And what does this mean? In honoring these inner demons we go beyond awareness. We analyze where they originate, why they reside within us, we discover what binds them there, and we prevent their return. Like the demon in the story, our inner demons need to be acknowledged. Repression is not enough. Release is not enough. This is the “cure”, but the disease which our inner demons cause to the body/mind/soul is chronic, so without understanding, acknowledgment, and acceptance, there is no true release and no truly sustainable healing takes place.
Khonsu, the introspective yet “destructive” god of the moon healed through acknowledgment, awareness, and acceptance. And we too must level, with ourselves. He did not tell the demon, “You have no claim here”. He did not battle with the demon. There was no denial, no hatred, and no condemnation toward this demon. We must treat ourselves in this same way. This also illustrates that the destructive aspects of Khonsu are actually transmutational. We have a tendency, as people, to without realizing, view acts of transmutation as destruction. This may technically be true, as one form of existence or identity replaces the next, but the difference is that no pieces are discarded, the same space is still maintained, and these pieces are only recycled; they are purified. Our particles are only rearranged and balanced accordingly through a new filter to create a less diluted substance, and this substance is that which makes up the mind, body, and spirit.
We discard nothing, we transform everything. We remain who we truly are, but we improve the foundational structure of our identity and mindsets. The way to healing is not through denial, it is not through repression, and it is not through self-hatred or guilt. We forgive, we accept, and we transform. We all must accept that we are in some ways inadequate people, angry people, egotistical people, sad people, negative people, impure, unjust, self-serving, and the list goes on. We are these things, but we do not have to remain them forever, and they do not have to define our whole being.
The only way to perform spiritual alchemy, self-healing, is to know what substances you are working with. If you work with lead as if it were bronze, silver, or especially as if it were gold, you will never have true gold. You will have a very shiny rock which you have feverishly polished. And some will recognize us to be just that, a shiny rock, but even if we fool everyone that is how we will continue to recognize ourselves. We will do so unconsciously, subconsciously, even if we do not wish to truly acknowledge it. Without this acceptance, the inner demons live on. And they can re-enter our space. In honoring our demons, the subconscious can also detox. We can detox our traumas and enhance our self work on a deeper level, pulling the weeds out by the root.
This month's cards ask us to dissolve our safe space. Not in a reckless way, but we need to dissolve the soothe-saying thoughts that prevent growth and personal development. We need to stop denying, stop making excuses for ourselves, and dig down deep. We all want to be better people, and as our problems grow worse, often the solutions grow to be more apparent. When this happens, we must trade one way of doing things for another, and this can be a most difficult task because it means leaving our “safe space” and acknowledging a need to change.
Change is the ever-present, ever-looming death. It is bound to all forms of life, and laced through its potential into each and every moment, so we in turn tend to fear it each and every moment on our deepest human level. Especially subconsciously. But not all that is cozy and comfortable is good, so its time to step out of our safe-space-caves. We unplug our eyes, unstuff our ears, and unpinch our noses. If it looks rotten now, if it sounds unpleasing, if it stinks of decay or lacks authenticity, transform these aspects, mindsets, and behaviors with self-loving care and acceptance. Once day at a time. One step at a time. One moment at a time. There is no race, because time is going nowhere.
This month, in relation to personal and spiritual growth, is about acceptance, acknowledgment, and deep inner work. It is also about the success and prosperity that we will produce as a result. This reading may sound heavy, but these acknowledgments should breed a new form of emotional and psychological liberation that can only exist through an unobstructed lens. If you start to feel heavy, simply remember that moving weight takes muscle, and that such acknowledgment requires a deep and consistent inner-strength.
Dig down deep, but do not cut or carve from your core. Instead we must sculpt, shape, transmute, and transform. From the earths dust, and then to lead, but we will all soon become golden monuments to our own existence. To the human existence. We can all then fly back home to Egypt, to our highest selves, like the Golden Hawk. Our monuments exist not just to honor our achievements in the heavens, our victories in the present, but also to honor our origins in the muds and mucks from which we came, to honor our pasts (“lest we forget”). This way of thought breaks wide open the doors of the future, re-opens the Heavens, and shatters the vaulted ceilings of our current potential. Not just as individuals, not just as communities, but as an entire human race.
One day the lead base of our personal alchemy will be just a fleeting memory, dormant, but it has brought us to our golden dawn, and without it we may have never had the chance to shine so bright. So, burn it up. Heat that lead; distill your fears. Then, Re-cast yourself in a substance that is golden and new. Fly home again.
“My name is Yale Bowman, and I was born and raised in Indianapolis. I work full time as a psychic medium, a spiritual counselor, and as a Shaman and Energetic Healer. I work with clients in-person and by phone or internet, locally and internationally. For more about my work, additional writings and articles, or to inquire about or book for my services, you can make use of the information provided below. I regularly post articles and daily readings, and to view these posts you can follow the links to my social media accounts and website.”
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