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Egyptian Mythology (エジプト神話 Ejiputo Shinwa?) is the mythology of the ancient Egyptians, dating from 3000 BCE.

In Toaru Majutsu no Index, Egyptian Mythology is used as a base for certain forms of Magic,[1] and certain aspects of Thelema draw from it.

PrinciplesEdit

Ankh

The Egyptian symbol of life, the ankh. Like the Eye of Horus, as a gift it is representative of Egyptian culture.[2]

Much of the Egyptian mythology is set in the earliest times, setting the pattern for a cycle which the Egyptians believed would be repeated in the events of the present times, much like the cycles of nature they were witness to, like the course of the sun and the annual flooding of the Nile. They believed that, as the cycles were repeated, the fundamental order of the universe, called maat, would be renewed. The universe was not a battle between good and evil, but a balance between maat and isfet (chaos, injustice, etc.), which couldn't exist without the other, order being capable of emerging from chaos and chaos from order: the sun and the day died, leading to night and darkness, which was followed by the sun rising again out of the dark. The Nile flooded annually, destroying houses and lands, but at the same time said flood was what made the fields of Egypt so fertile for agriculture. Thus, order and chaos were subject to this same cycle on an universal scale.

The Pharaoh was the "Lord of Maat" who upheld both social and cosmic order through his combined political and religious authority. Without this authority, the Egyptians believed that the primordial isfet which existed before Creation would overtake the world and dissolve everything. For example, without maat, the Nile flood failed and the country fell into famine.

The Egyptian pantheon consists of numerous deities (called nṯrw, pronounced netjeru, meaning "gods" in Ancient Egyptian), who represent natural or social phenomena. With the exception of a few beings, most of the Egyptian pantheon act to maintain maat throughout the cosmos. In art, a fair number of deities were represented as a human with an animal's head, not because the Egyptians actually believed the gods had animal heads, but because the animals symbolized aspects of the deity or were sacred and thus associated to them.

BackgroundEdit

Rooting in prehistoric Egypt, Egyptian mythology was developed with the civilization of ancient Egypt, which emerged around 3000 BCE, and formed its religion throughout much of its history, which lasted until around the beginning of the Common Era when Egypt was annexed by the Roman Empire.

Over time, knowledge of Egyptian mythology has been distorted by European preconceptions and misconceptions, starting from the ancient Greeks, resulting in the prevalence of twisted interpretations which differ from the original mythology.[3]

Though the religion of Egyptian mythology was lost to history, many well preserved records were left behind. Considerable progress in their analysis meant that information on their system of gods, rituals and views of life and the soul were gathered together, and with Egypt being positioned at the top of Africa, it was geographically convenient for European magicians who had reached a dead-end in their research and sought new material elsewhere to make a breakthrough, and many monuments and burial items were preserved by museum and collectors in Europe.[4]

Like many other magicians, Aleister Crowley traveled to Egypt and incorporated the names of Isis, Osiris and Horus into his concept of Aeons.[4] Egyptian Mythology was one of several fields which influenced the development of Hermeticism, which would become part of the foundation of the Golden Dawn.[5] The Golden Dawn incorporated many elements from Egyptian mythology into their magical system,[6] and used the names of Egyptian deities in their temple names and in a number of their ceremonies.[7][6][8] Pieces in Enochian chess were modelled after Egyptian deities.[9]

ChronologyEdit

Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index SSEdit

Main article: Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index SS

The first Egyptian magician to appear in the series is Leep, who targets Index Librorum Prohibitorum, hoping to use her knowledge to complete a version of the Book of the Dead which was missing pieces due to tomb robbers.[1]

Uses of Egyptian Mythology in the storyEdit

Name Description Usage in Toaru Majutsu no Index
Ankh A hieroglyphic ideograph (with the meaning "life"), shaped as a cross with a looped handle, commonly featured in depictions of Egyptian deities. The ankh is mentioned as a tool capable of applying a curse.[10]
Bastet A cat-headed goddess of protection, sometimes associated with Sekhmet. The Egyptian magician Leep makes use of certain aspects of Bastet, acting as a Priestess of Bastet.[1]
Eye of Horus Also referred to as the Wedjat, a symbol of protection, royal power and good health, featured on funerary amulets. The Eye of Horus is mentioned as a tool capable of applying a curse.[10]
Horus A falcon-headed god of the sky and war, son of Osiris and Isis. The Aeon of Horus takes its name from this deity.[4]
Isis A mother goddess of health, fertility, wisdom and magic, wife of Osiris and mother of Horus.
Mummification A process and practice whereby a deceased body is preserved as a mummy, believed to be important step in the transition to the afterlife. Notable parts of the practice include the removal of the internal organs except the heart and wrapping the mummy with many layers of linen cloth bandages.
  • Nephthys is a mummy, born from a group of servants buried with a pharaoh,[15] and made use of her separated organs in order to escape being completely 'exiled' by World Rejecter.[16]
  • A certain magical faction planned the ritual sacrifice and mummification of a maiden as part of an experiment to prove the existence of heaven, with the heart being used like a signal, before being reduced to dust by Nephthys.[17]
  • Othinus used the idea of mummies wandering and protecting ancient treasure, as an example of how European preconceptions and misconception have twisted Egyptian Mythology.[3]
Nephthys A goddess associated with death and protector of mummies, together with Isis. A member of the true Gremlin is called Nephthys.[18]
Osiris The Egyptian god of the underworld and the dead, murdered by his brother Set.
Ra God of the sun.
Sarcophagus A type of coffin usually containing a mummy of royalty, such as a pharaoh. Othinus referred to the idea of a pharaoh's coffin being the source of a curse, as an example of how European preconceptions and misconception have twisted Egyptian Mythology.[3]
Scarab An insect member of the Scarabaeidae family of beetles. In Egypt, the scarab represents transmigration.[2] Kamijou Touya offers Kanzaki Kaori a scarab as an Egyptian talisman supposedly preventing getting lost in the desert as a greeting gift.[2]
Sekhmet A violent lioness-headed goddess of war, sometimes associated with Bastet. Leep and the Priestess of Sekhmet make use of a trance to use aspects of Sekhmet as a Priestess of Sekhmet.[1]
Set God of chaos, the desert and storms, who usurped and killed his brother Osiris, eventually being deposed by Osiris's son Horus. The syncretized entity Typhon-Set was mentioned alongside Belzébuth with regards to Mathers and the Madame Horos incident.[20]
Sphinx A mythical creature, with the body of a lion and a human head.
  • The creature is the origin of Sphynx's name.
  • Othinus used the story of the Sphinx's riddle, a Greek invention, as an example of how European preconceptions and misconceptions have twisted Egyptian Mythology.[3]
Tefnut Goddess of rain, dew and moisture. One of the Divine Mixtures, Tefnut-Artemis, incorporates aspects of this deity.[19]
The Book of the Dead A sacred funeral text which contains spells to assist a person's journey through Duat, the Egyptian underworld, and into the afterlife. The Book of the Dead is one of the grimoires inside Index Librorum Prohibitorum. Different versions of the book are written, specific copies for specific persons.[1]
Thoth The ibis-headed god of knowledge. The name of Aleister Crowley's AI, Reading Thoth 78, is derived from Thoth and the Tarot named after him created by Aleister.[21] It is also an original grimoire called the Thoth Tarot, its core being comprised of the 78 Tarot cards from the set of the same name.[22]
Wadjet Protective goddess. One of the Divine Mixtures, Wadjet-Leto, incorporates aspects of this deity.[23]

External LinksEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index SS
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 04 Chapter 1 Part 2
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 20 Chapter 3 Part 1
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 14 Between the Lines 3
  5. Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 18 Chapter 2 Part 2
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 21 Chapter 2 Part 6
  7. Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 21 Chapter 1 Part 11
  8. 8.0 8.1 Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 21 Between the Lines 2
  9. Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 21 Chapter 3 Part 16
  10. 10.0 10.1 Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 16 Chapter 2 Part 15
  11. Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 20 Chapter 3 Part 10
  12. Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 18 Chapter 3 Part 4
  13. Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 18 Between the Lines 2
  14. Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 21 Chapter 3 Part 18
  15. Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 14 Between the Lines 1
  16. Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 13 Epilogue
  17. Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 14 Between the Lines 2
  18. Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 10 Epilogue
  19. 19.0 19.1 Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 20 Chapter 3 Part 3
  20. Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 21 Between the Lines 3
  21. Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 05 Epilogue
  22. Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 18 Chapter 4 Part 7
  23. Shinyaku Toaru Majutsu no Index Light Novel Volume 20 Chapter 3 Part 11