March 28th 2013

Title: The Gods of Ancient Egypt: Their Beginnings and Worship

Speaker: Victor Blunden

Horus was very pleased to welcome Victor Blunden again. We knew that we would be given an erudite but entertaining evening, and come away understanding an aspect of Ancient Egypt that we had not appreciated before. 

On this occasion we learned how the people of pre-dynastic Egypt came to worship as gods and goddesses the forces of nature that they feared or relied upon for their health and well being. His excellent power point presentation gave visual recognition of the deities personified in human or animal form that he described.

The earliest known gods arose from fear of hunter gatherers for crocodiles and hippopotami that threatened them as they followed their prey into the Nile. Later, because early farmers depended on the inundation, there was a need to appease the river itself. By making offerings and creating a home for them the early Egyptians hoped they would receive the gods’ favour.

The search for meaning led to creation myths. The most widely accepted was that of the nine deities, the Ennead, with Atum the original creator god. Ptah conceived the world in his heart and gave it form with one word, Atum’. Thoth the god of wisdom and knowledge was a third creator.

Trying to explain the movement of the sun invoked another god, Ra, and the construct of an underworld. The fabric of Egyptian mythology is vast and complicated, and we look forward to another visit from Victor Blunden to take us on the next stage of a journey toward understanding it.

by Mary Bonsall

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