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isis kiwis isis kiwis

isis kiwi

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To the ancient Egyptians, Isis was the nucleus, the rock, the center of their universe. She was the epitome of the good loyal wife and the envy of all mothers. But she was also a force not to be reckoned with. She was ingenious, cunning and astute. She was a very creative and intelligent magician. She was the wife of the god Osiris and the mother of Horus. Just as the the pharaohs were the divine lineage of Horus in life and Osiris in death, the queens were forever bonded the same way with Isis in life and death. So many of them potrayed themselves as the goddess in life.

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Isis the Sorceress

Isis was the first daughter of Geb, god of the Earth, and Nut, the goddess of the Overarching Sky. Isis was born on the first day between the first years of creation, and was adored by her human followers. Unlike the other Egyptian goddesses, the goddess Isis spent time among her people, teaching women how to grind corn and make bread, spin flax and weave cloth, and how to tame men enough to live with them. Isis taught her people the skills of reading and agriculture and was worshiped as the goddess of medicine and wisdom.

Isis became the most powerful of the gods and goddesses in the ancient world. Even more powerful than Ra, the God of the Sun, who originally had the greatest power. But Ra was uncaring, and the people of the world suffered greatly during his reign.

The goddess Isis tricked him by magically mixing some of his saliva with mud to create a poisonous snake that bit him, causing him causing him to suffer greatly which she then offered to cure. He eventually agreed.

Isis informed Ra that, for the cure to work, she would have to speak his secret name (which was the source of his power over life and death). Reluctantly, he whispered it to her.

When Isis uttered his secret name while performing her magic, Ra was indeed healed. Isis then possessed his powers of life and death, and quickly became the most powerful of the Egyptian gods and goddesses, using her great powers to the benefit of the people.

Isis was called the Mother of Life, but she was also known as the Crone of Death. Her immense powers earned her the titles of "The Giver of Life" and "Goddess of Magic". Her best known story illustrates why she is simultaneously known as a creation goddess and a goddess of destruction.

Isis was the Goddess of the Earth in ancient Egypt and loved her brother Osiris. When they married, Osiris became the first King of Earth. Their brother Set, immensely jealous of their powers, murdered Osiris so he could usurp the throne.

(see Eye of Horus, this is another version)

Set did this by tricking Osiris into stepping into a beautiful box made of cedar, ebony and ivory that he had ordered built to fit only Osiris. Set then sealed it up to become a coffin and threw it into the river. The river carried the box out to sea; it washed up in another country, resting in the upper boughs of a tamarisk tree when the waters receded.

As time passed, the branches covered the box, encapsulating the god in his coffin in the trunk of the tree.

In a state of inconsolable grief, Isis tore her robes to shreds and cut off her beautiful black hair. When she finally regained her emotional balance, Isis set out to search for the body of her beloved Osiris so that she might bury him properly.

The search took Isis to Phoenicia where she met Queen Astarte. Astarte didn't recognize the goddess and hired her as a nursemaid to the infant prince.

Fond of the young boy, Isis decided to bestow immortality on him. As she was holding the royal infant over the fire as part of the ritual, the Queen entered the room. Seeing her son smoldering in the middle of the fire, Astarte instinctively grabbed the child out of the flames, undoing the magic of Isis that would have made her son a god.

When the Queen demanded an explanation, Isis revealed her identity and told Astarte of her quest to recover her husband's body. As she listened to the story, Astarte realized that the body was hidden in the fragrant tree in the center of the palace and told Isis where to find it.

Sheltering his broken body in her arms, the goddess Isis carried the body of Osiris back to Egypt for proper burial. There she hid it in the swamps on the delta of the Nile river.

Unfortunately, Set came across the box one night when he was out hunting. Infuriated by this turn of events and determined not to be outdone, he murdered Osiris once again . . . this time hacking his body into 14 pieces and throwing them in different directions knowing that they would be eaten by the crocodiles.

The goddess Isis searched and searched, accompanied by *seven scorpions*(see bottom of page) who assisted and protected her. Each time she found new pieces she rejoined them to re-form his body.

But Isis could only recover thirteen of the pieces. The fourteenth, his penis, had been swallowed by a crab, so she fashioned a replacement one made from gold and wax. Then inventing the rites of embalming, and speaking some words of magic, Isis brought her husband back to life with a little help from Thoth. Sharing a night of passion, the deities conceived Horus and Osiris died again, and went on to become Lord of the Underworld.

His spirit, however, frequently returned to be with Isis and the young Horus who both remained under his watchful and loving eye.

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Decoration on Amenophis II's Sarchophagus

Isis wearing the throne headdress

The foot end of the painted sarchophagus shows Isis kneeling upon the sign for gold and flanked by teo columns of hieroglyphic text. AmenophisII's tomb was found on March 9, 1898 by Victor Loret.

The literal meaning of her name is "female of the throne". When first appearing she was originally wearing an empty throne as a headdress, representing the throne that belonged to her beloved Osiris whom Seth murdered.

She was also frequently depicted as a human queen wearing the vulture headdress with a royal serpent on the brow. In these two forms she occasionally carried a lotus bud or the glyph of the sycamore tree.

 


She was also commonly depicted as a queen or goddess wearing the double crown of Upper and Lower Egypt along with the feather of Ma'at. There are also numerous representations of Isis with her son, Horus, which bear a marked similarity to later images of the virgin Mary with baby Jesus.

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Isis was also depicted as a winged goddess or a kite (one of her sacred animals). In this form her wings spread a heavenly scent across the land and brought fresh air into the underworld.


From the New Kingdom she also adopted the headdress of cow's horns on either side of a sun disk between them. Occasionally she was depicted as a cow or a woman with a cow's head.

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In her form of the snake goddess,Thermouthis, she was depicted as a cobra crowned with the throne headdress. And last but not least, the sistrum.

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The Tjet amulet was also known as the "Knot of Isis", "Buckle of Isis", or the "Blood of Isis". Although the meaning of the Tjet is fairly obscure, it is thought that it may have represented a woman's sanitary cloth (hence the connection with blood) or may relate to the magical power in a knot (again linking it with Isis the great magician). The Tjet was used in the funerary rites and seems to have been linked with the ideas of resurrection and rebirth.

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According to the Book of the Dead, Isis is described as "She who gives birth to heaven and earth, knows the orphan, knows the widow, seeks justice for the poor, and shelter for the weak".

In the ancient Grecian period she was known as Demeter, in the Roman period as Ceres.

According to some, the symbol of Isis is the star Sept/Sirius. It marked the beginning of a new year along with letting them know that the Inundation of the Nile was close at hand.

As we all know Isis was the companion of Osiris
whose soul dwelt in the star Sah/ Orion.

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The first notions of Isis date at in or around the 5th dynasty. However, she only had a huge impact in later dynasties. Eventually the cult began to spread outside of Egypt to the Middle East then on to Europe.

It is said that in the early years that the priesthood had indeed included men as well as women. As time passed by it turned into an all female cult during the Greco/Roman era. Most of priestesses became mid wives, healers, enchantresses, shaman, others would dabble in oneiromancy, they say that some had the power to control the weather by brushing or braiding ones hair in which the ancients believed that "knots" held magical powers.

With all that being said, it wasn't until the 30th dynasty that Isis was worshiped on an individual basis. She was always in everyone else's temple and most always portrayed with other gods. Temples distinctively devoted to Isis only appeared during the Roman era.

After the conquest of Alexander and the Hellenistic era settled in, Isis became the sailors guardian. She becomes one of the most important perplexed figures in ancient world religion. It is said that the demise of the cult of Isis came to an end by the hands of the Roman ruling elite. Augustus believed that the rituals associated with Isis were lewd and offensive and would ultimately suppress Roman values and morals. Her worship at the Island of Philae was eventually banned by Justinian in the 6th century.

philae

The Philae Temple complex, prior to its removal and restoration, set alongside Biga Island. To the ancient Egyptians, Biga was the sacred mound, the first ground created from Nun out of Chaos. This was the legendary burial place of Osiris. The earth was considered to be part of his body so that only priests and temple servants were permitted to live there.

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Goddess Isis,Tomb of Horemheb, Dynasty XVIII, 1330-1305 BC

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Isis and the seven scorpions

One version of the story

After the murder of Osiris Isis tried to hide from Set, but he found her and imprisoned her in a spinning-mill and left her to weave her husband´s funeral linen. Thoth realised that Isis would be in danger if Set realised she was pregnant and came to her aid. He freed Isis from the mill and advised her to go into hiding in the marshes with seven scorpions named Tefen, Masetetef, Petet, Tjetet, Matet, Mesetet and Befen who swore to protect her and her unborn son. The goddess disguised her true form and began her journey. It was a long journey to the marshes and so she decided to stop at the house of a rich woman named Usert to ask for sustenance and a place to sleep for the night.

However, when the rich woman saw Isis (in the guise of an old beggar woman) and the scorpions, she rudely slammed the door in her face, enraging the scorpions. Isis continued on to the house of a poor fisher-girl who welcomed her warmly and invited the goddess into her home. However, the scorpions were not about to forget the rich woman´s cruel actions and so they put all of their combined poison into their leader, Tefen, and he bit the woman´s child. The poison racked the poor boy´s body and his distraught mother ran into the town with her child looking for help, but no-one could aid her. But, Isis heard the cries of the child and overcome with pity for the boy she returned. She called out the name of each scorpion and commanded the poison to leave the child´s body. The rich woman was overcome with remorse when she realised that she had snubbed the goddess while the poor girl had invited her into her home. To make amends she took all of her own property and gave it to the poor fisher-girl, causing the goddess to rejoice.

This story and the spell to cure scorpion stings were inscribed on numerous stelae and "cippi", the most famous of which is the Metternich Stela (composed during the reign of Nectanebo II during the Thirtieth Dynasty).

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