SYSTEMS OF ANCIENT EGYPTIAN COSMOGOMY…

THE SKY HAD NOT YET COME INTO BEING

THE EARTH HAD NOT YET COME INTO BEING

MANKIND HAD NOT YET COME INTO BEING

THE GOD HAD NOT YET BEEN BORN

DEATH HAD NOT YET COME INTO BEING

– PYRAMID TEXT 1466-

~

creation

220px-Sunrise_at_Creation

images (12)

THE ANCIENT EGYPTIANS DID NOT HAVE ONE SINGLE SYSTEM OF

COSMOGONY, WHICH IS THE THEORY OF THE STRUCTURE OF THE UNIVERSE.

THERE WERE THREE MAJOR SYSTEMS EMANATING FROM THE RELIGIOUS

CENTERS OF HERMOPOLIS, HELIOPOLIS AND MEMPHIS. THERE ARE,

THEREFORE, THE HERMOPOLITAN SYSTEM, THE HELIOPOLITAN AND

THE MEMPHITE SYSTEM (MEMPHITE THEOLOGY). THIS DOES NOT MEAN

THAT THE ANCIENT EGYPTIANS HAD THREE DIFFERENT DOCTRINES OR

THEORIES OF CREATION, RATHER IT MEANS THAT THE ANCIENT EGYPTIANS

USED THREE DIFFERENT SYSTEMS OF SYMBLOISM TO EXPRESS THE REALITY

OF CREATION.  THE ANCIENT EGYPTIANS HAD ONE CONCEPT OR DOCTRINE

OF CREATION, AND THIS ONE CONCEPT WAS ARTICULATED DIFFERENTLY

ACCORDING TO THE DIFFERENT RELIGIOUS CENTERS. EACH RELIGIOUS

CENTER STRESSED DIFFERENT DIETIES TO WHOM THEY NATURALLY

ASSIGNED FUNCTIONS IN THE WHOLE WORK OF CREATION. IT WAS NOT

UNTIL PHAROAH AKHENATON THAT MONOTHEISM WAS OFFICIALLY

ADOPTED INTO ANCIENT EGYPTIAN RELIGION, AND THIS WAS LONG BEFORE

YAHWEH OF THE JEWISH BIBLICAL TRADITION. 

~

IN THE HERMOPOLITAN SYSTEM, THE GOD AMUN WITH THE OGDOAD WERE

EMPLOYED AS SYMBOLS OF THE DIVINE IN THE CREATION OF THE UNIVERSE.

THE HELIOPOLITAN SYSTEM STRESSED ATUM AND THE ENNEAD.  THE

MEMPHITE THEOLOGY ACCENTUATED THE GOD PTAH-RA AND

THE ENNEAD. THESE SYSTEMS 

WERE INCORPORATED IN THE EDUCATIONAL CIRRICULUM OF THE MYSTERY 

SYSTEM AND TAUGHT ALL INITIATES . 

~

THE CONCEPT OF NUN IN EGYPTIAN COSMOGONY

FOR ALL THREE SYSTEMS, NUN, THE PRIMORDIAL ABYSS, WAS THE REGION

OUT OF WHICH LIFE FIRST CAME. FROM THE PRIMORDIAL WATERS

APPEARED THE ACTUAL LOCATION OF CREATION, THE PRIMORDIAL OR

MOUND OR MONAD AND FROM THIS FORMLESS MATTER, ATUM AND PTAH OF

THE HELIOPOLITAN AND MEMPHITE SYSTEMS, DEVELOPED THEMSELVES,

CREATED THEMSELVES; THEN THEY CREATED THE ENNEAD WHO

SUBSEQUENTLY CREATED OR GENERATED THE MATERIAL WORLD. THE

ANCIENT EGYPTIANS BELIEVED THE UNINIVERSE HAD TO HAVE A

BEGINNING, WHICH MEANS THAT NOTHING EXISTED BEFORE IT. 

~

The African Origins of Greek Philosophy: An Exercise in Afrocentrism

By: Innocent C. Onyewuenyi  

(pgs 178-179)

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