Dung Beetle Stalking Prey: Chapter 12

[First post in this Novel: Dedication]
[Previous post in this Novel: Chapter 11]

Thoth and Hathor had gathered together the inner circle, the Ogdoad: the eight senior eternals, Nun and Naunet (water), Amun and Amaunet (invisibility), Heh and Hauhet (infinity) and Kuk and Duat, the land of the dead, where they made the Nile flow and the sun rise every day, this was a misconception.

The story is as old as time. Early on, in the beginning, the interaction of the original eternals was unbalanced. This imbalance corrected itself by producing what would be called in the current era the Big Bang. The Big Bang created Hathor, whose first job was to be the Milky Way (not to be confused with the Milkweg club in Amsterdam), and her sexy counterbalance, her much beloved other half that made her whole, Thoth. Thoth in turn, in his guise as a cosmic Ibis, laid an egg that hatched into Ra, the sun god. Ra in turn created a lotus – the Eye of Ra, that contained a scarab beetle at its center. On opening with the first rays of Ra, the scarab transformed itself into a crying, lonely boy. Tears from his right eye created men, tears from his left eye created women, and when the tears mingled, two-spirited people were created. The lonely boy was no longer alone and was content.

Once this was set in motion, cosmic balance ensued. Following a geologically brief Golden Age during which the Ogdoad ruled, the eternal Ogdoad passed on their leadership responsibilities to their offspring, and served primarily as corporate Chief Executive Officers of the Egyptian Deities, amongst other things. From time to time when the need arose they made or approved of the making of new gods. They helped advise on the big decisions, but generally kept from interfering with their offspring, and the offspring of their offspring and so on. They did not concern themselves with the small stuff. They felt that it was best to let their not-so-young ones learn from their own mistakes.

To keep a small hand in their creation, using their biological autopilot functions, the Ogdoad did continue to make the Nile flow and the sun rise every day, and cast their Third Eyes about the place every millennia or so to keep up in broad strokes with current events. Although like lesser eternals, when the gods were in their hedonism cycle, they kept their work to a minimum and R&R to a maximum. So for example, when the amount of incoming solar radiation received from Ra was diminished or increased, a fact noted by the Serbian mathematician Milutin Milanković, the mean water level in the Nile rose and fell with these variations in solar radiance. As a result, during their most recent hedonistic cycle which began for them around 4500 years ago, there arose the simple misconception that they had retired to the land of the dead. An easy to understand mistake, given the shortage in ancient Egypt of either a really long-term, high-resolution, radioactive decay series-dated paleoclimatic record or a solid understanding of the eternals and their extremely complex work schedules (which had to be coordinated with other Pantheons and newly hatched godlets).

For old times’ sake, the Ogdoads, Thoth and Hathor met in a small cafe in the ramshackle Coptic town of El Ashmunein – in what had once been the great city of Hermopolis (a.k.a. On, Innu). From the looks on everyones face’s – they wore human ones this time to blend in, although normally they wore their more fetching frog and snake heads – they were shocked at the ruinous state of this once beautiful gem of a city. The Ogdoads briefly applied their Third Eyes to get a medium-level level glimpse of the history that had passed beneath their feet since the end of their last work cycle. While little ruffled them, as they had witnessed all that had occurred since their creation, their vexation caused a peculiar angry puce-colored darkness to settle over El Ashmunein. This event was even commented on in the local newscasts that evening.

Thoth and Hathor chaired the meeting.

“Divine ones, we have asked you here to seek your council. Ma’at has been profoundly disturbed. We have three discreet potential problems that may intersect and have a catastrophic domino effect. Even though it is your hedonism cycle, and we do greatly respect that, Hathor and I feel that this situation should be set right as soon as possible.

“First, in a nutshell, it appears that Set is up to his old tricks. But this time, he has outdone himself. For this at least we have to give him credit.” He paused briefly for effect. Thoth had always had a dramatic flair. “If Hathor and I have pieced the story together correctly, over the last few millennia, Set has somehow managed to convince the majority of people that there is only one God. One! And that singular ‘God’ is male and has no female counterpart” The Og-doad imperceptibly shook their heads in disgust.

“Just wait, it gets worse. He has also convinced them that a counterpoint to this One Male God is a rebellious angel or jinn who is most commonly called (ha)Satan or Sheytân. (ha)Satan attempts to convert people away from the path of the One Male God or tempts them into ‘sin’. Sin is defined as any violation of an abstruse set of moral rules promulgated as the One Male God’s Commandments. These Commandments are to some extent a modified and twisted amalgamation of the Universal Laws, the 42 Negative Confessions and the musings of Akehenaten-(Ah)Mose… another one of Set’s cosmic jokes around 3,300 years ago, but that’s another story.

“For example, as you well know, the Universal Law of Herukhutt states: “Know that God neither punishes nor rewards nor protects. You will have the comfort of controlling these for yourself.” Set has reframed this law into one of his Commandments which declares that: “You shall not bow down to or worship other Gods; for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, punishing children for the iniquity of parents, to the third and the fourth generation of those who reject me.

“Furthermore, Set is playing both sides of the street: he has set himself up as being both the One Male God and (ha)Satan. He has orchestrated a number of different versions of “religions” based on variants of the same One Male God-centric monotheistic theme, including Judaism, Christianity, Islam and their derivatives. It is a very classic Setian move, which we have all seen time-and-time again. He has grown his skill set in pitting one group of his followers against another. This has resulted in genocides and wars that go beyond the standard old fashioned raping and pillaging for fun and profit. Now they do it for fun and prophet instead. For some reason, this greatly amuses him.

“But worst of all, the greatest possible abomination against Ma’at, Set has pitted men against women, and men and women against two-spirited souls. He has done this at so many different and nuanced levels that people can no longer properly bind with their other halves, and so most are incomplete. While of course there are some who have escaped this madness, they are few and far between. Oddly enough, the special ones that carry the genetic messenger gene, which allows them to hear the gods if a deity so chooses, are the least affected by Set’s influence.

“A large proportion of teachers of higher learning and to use the current vernacular “left-wing” intellectuals have this gene. To counteract their impact, using tried-and-true methods, Set has used negative messaging to undermine their efforts, calling them terms such as nerds, geeks, autistics, and even worse, academics. While there have been some special ones that have caught the public’s ear in recent history with such strange names as Ghandi, King, Sadat, Rabin, and Lennon, they tend to be assassinated, their followers dispersed, their divinely inspired messages quickly forgotten or twisted beyond recognition into their polar opposite. The capacity to disseminate negative messaging using current technology is astonishing. Since you have all used your Third Eyes, even if only briefly, you are aware of televisions and the internet. These electronic communication portals, which have for today replaced the gods, portray special ones as objects of ridicule, so they are not paid the appropriate homage which they are due. This mockery is so endemic that even political leaders – the Pharaohs of this age – rarely seriously consider council from the special ones.” Thoth took a moment to let this set in, then continued.

“The second issue is related to the first. Set has set it up so that the One Male God religions can easily consecrate a place of worship. Consecrated places are expanding exponentially. As there is no way a place can ever be de-consacrated, the areas where gods can effectively intersect with humans as gods is rapidly diminishing. This is clearly part of Set’s plan, to limit out ability to interfere with the monotheistic religions that he is engineering.

“The third issue, and perhaps most important, is that prior to the most recent hedonism cycle, Hathor, in her wisdom, was deeply concerned with increasing human population growth. She hypothesized that with the logarithmic growth rate a critical threshold would be crossed which would increase the probability of proliferation of new religions. But religions come and go. Gods change jobs, some of their aspects, and their work locations. They culturally evolve through time and space so they can have continued societal relevance and maintain the essence, albeit in an ever evolving and contemporary form, of the Universal Laws and the 42 Negative Confessions. That was not a concern.

“What Hathor became worried about was that exponential growth in religions posed an unacceptable risk that the Universal Laws and the 42 Negative Confessions, the fundamental back-bone of nature and society, in this world and the next, would be forgotten and Chaos would ensue. Real Chaos has not existed since before you made Hathor. If Chaos came into existence, all that was, all that is and could be will not have been nor ever be.” Thoth concluded, looking at Hathor to signal that it was her turn to continue the tale.

“After Set’s Akehenaten-(Ah)Mose debacle, which opened my eyes to the possibility of a full blown Chaotic event, I convened a workshop of all the gods. We were without exception collectively deeply concerned. If the Chaos hypothesis was correct, and it came to pass, it would mean the end of everything including ourselves.

“The gods spent a few centuries developing various theoretical models to ascertain the validity of the Chaos hypothesis – which we concluded was most probable. Collectively we determined the key variables that, in various complex combinations, could trigger a Chaotic event. We ran small-scale human population level trials to ascertain potential outcomes of various combinations of variables. All this information was gone over individually by each deity, then gone over in teams, then collectively as a group we held a workshop to reach consensus on each detail. Once consensus was reached, Thoth calligraphed the final version of the workshop detailing the agreed upon text, which included all the nuanced paths that could lead to a Chaotic event. In addition, a formal code of godly behavior that would prevent Chaos from ensuing was written. All the gods, including Set, signed the document and the formal code with their divine blood. Once made, the blood signature became forever binding. Even the destruction of the document could not unmake this agreement; the blood signatures made it part of every god’s very being.

“Never in the history of our existence have we collectively and successfully cooperated in the development of such an important document. It was decided to not bother you, the Ogdoad, with this, as it was felt that since the Chaotic theory was just a hypothesis, and all the gods had sworn in their eternal blood to prevent a Chaotic event, it became essentially a non-issue.

“Unfortunately, I made a mistake. The final meeting of the conference was held at my most sacred of sacred complexes in the western desert oasis known as Kharga. Instead of having the document and agreement destroyed immediately as I should have done, in a sentimental and proud moment I had my head priestess put the signed document and the formal code in a locked carved and painted ebony box in my private library.

“With the end of the Roman occupation, which was contemporaneous with the beginning of this current hedonism cycle, the complex was abandoned and destroying the document became absolutely necessary. We could not risk it falling into the hands of mortals – it did not bind them in any way, but could instead point them on the path to chaos.

“At the same time that my oasis complex was being closed for the cycle, I was busy with the shutting down of my large complex in Dendera and a large number of smaller ones, so I asked my beloved Thoth to remove the sacred document from the sacred complex and destroy it. A simple task. Unfortunately, Thoth’s conscience would not let him destroy the document, and he had it buried under a dune field in the compound instead. Thoth chose not to let me in on this small detail.

“This past week the document box was been found by a group of very special ones. It may be a few years until the box is actually opened, and the documents translated and understood. However, unless the document is destroyed it will be. The reading of the inscription on the box, wit its invocation of my name, Hathor, called me to action.

“I am sure that all the gods, including Set, would not renege on their commitment. However, despite this conviction, Thoth and I firmly believe that we may be headed for a Chaotic event with variables we had not considered in our models. First, the areas on Earth where our powers are limited is expanding almost exponentially due to Set’s One God religions and the ridiculously easy rules he has set up for consecrating sites. Second, the number of people who currently believe in evolved iterations of the Universal Laws and the 42 Negative Confessions is at an all-time low due to Set’s One Male God thingy and a growing movement towards atheism amongst the special ones. Thus without belief in the gods, the Law of Ma’at is jeopardized and the Gods may not have enough collective power to protect the world. Finally, the knowledge contained in the workshops document may fall into the hands of a megalomaniacal very special one, as in this era, only very special ones have the knowledge to make use of the document.

“I have to emphasize: if the knowledge of how to create a Chaotic event fell into human hands, the unthinkable would become possible – in fact most probable.

“The sacred sites for Set’s monotheistic gods seem, despite how easily they can be created, to have all the attributes of true sacred sites: gods cannot directly manipulate anything within any sacred complex, and once an area has been made sacred, it can never be deconsecrated. Within sacred boundaries, when gods take on human form and enter sacred areas, they have no special powers. They become the mortals they appear to be. They can only regain their powers by leaving the sacred precinct.

“Clearly we need to destroy the document. However, the document is now being stored on the sacred ground of my abandoned complex in the Kharga Oasis. The complex is being guarded by guards with weapons that could actually kill us in our human form.

“We have asked you here to seek your council on how we should proceed,” Hathor concluded.

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