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Part Two

Coming of Age > Chapter Eleven

Djehouty’s Eight-Notched Scepter


The boy shivered at the memory and looked at his Tutor. Amenhotep, Son of Hapu acknowledged his return to the present and continued:

“The sixth notch represents Ptah and Sekhet.
Ptah brought himself into being
By the power of his own thoughts,
And his consort, Sekhet,
Is the lion-headed Goddess
Of the sun's scorching power.
Like the second notch
Where the power of your groin
Insures your survival in the world,
The sixth notch takes your name
Which is established by the fifth notch
And urges you to interact
With the world around you
To preserve that name.

“Once you have that name,
And it is a secret name,
You breathe it in and out
And, depending on the
Depth of your breath
Your sekhem force expands
And contracts and affects
Everything and everyone
Around you without a word.
Even Ptah transforms himself
And the power of his thought
Can double the power
Of your arms and legs.

“But just as Ptah is the God
Who not only thought,
But spoke himself into being,
The sixth notch is also the place
Where words are formed
And come out of your body.
You can form words
In many different ways.
You can talk like I do
When I teach your ears
And your heart,
Your and your Double,
At the same time.

“Or, you can whisper,
Yell, scream, tell stories of Gods,
Tell that you have
Discovered something,
Or chant the God’s words.
Each way is done with
A different Voice.
If your heart has opened
And mediates your life,
Your voice will go
Right through the ear
And lodge in the other
Person’s heart.

“If your heart remains closed,
Your voice will stop in
Your listener’s head
And he will start a dispute with you,
Especially if his heart, also, is closed.”

Amenhotep Son of Hapu stopped once again and let his words find meaning as his pupil sat and breathed the words over and over, in and out, while each thought found its place both in the realm of Measurement and Harmony within him and lined up along the notched stick inside his slender frame. Even if the meaning of the words did not become clear to Horemheb, he preserved the thoughts for the time when he could experience them and integrate them into his Understanding. As usual, he signaled his readiness to continue by drawing a very long and very deep breath. They both stood, walked around several times the cool corridors which surrounded the Sanctuary of Djehouty and eventually entered the seventh room. The Tutor placed his right hand on Horemheb’s head and began to speak, releasing his grip slowly as he warmed to his subject:

“As for the seventh notch,
Atum and Nout work it.
This state of being
And understanding
Reflects the glory
Of the Sun in the sky.
These two powers will,
When they act as one
With the powers of
Your heart, guide you
To your rightful place
Not only in this world,
Our beloved Black Land,
But also in the
World outside Egypt,
Where other Kings rule.

“Continue to learn,
As Ptah-Hotep said,
Both from those who
Wear the gemstones
As well as those who
Work with the Greenstones.

“Knowledge will pour
Into your head;
Knowledge will flow
Into your hands.
They are different.
The one appears as a
Response to thinking,
The other springs from
All experience.

“When you can’t channel
Knowledge through the heart,
It has no basis,
Lacks foundation!
It makes you reckless,
As if you had power
Over heaven and earth,
Over man and beast.
It’s an illusion
When knowledge goes right
From foot to the head
And from head to foot.

“Knowledge of the head,
When captured by one
Of the lower notches,
Will cause you to fight
And seek your grandeur;
Will cause your phallus
To enter the womb
Brutally, with force.
Then you will believe
You found your power
And you have conquered
Another being.
It’s an illusion
When knowledge goes from
Head to the phallus
And from the phallus
Back to the head.

“Exercising pow’r
For its own sake,
Over other beings,
Beasts, plants or earth
Forms a dark magic
Through which one person
Controls another
Without Ma'at.

“When your head knowledge
Represents your name,
Disconnected from
Your heart in your chest,
You become a fool
And your secret name
Becomes known to others.

“The upper notches
Reside in your chest,
Resonate in your throat
And reverberate
Inside your head.
Taken together,
These form Ma’at.
If heart-connected,
These balance Shesat
From below the heart.

“Your chest provides sia
For the actions of
Your hands and feet;
Your throat provides hu
To guide your phallus
To sow seeds of love
Instead of violence;
Your head is ma’at
To calm the fears which
Arise in your belly.”

The old sage stopped. Horemheb looked him straight in the eye and asked:

“If your stomach is greater than your head, My Father, will your fears overwhelm your sense of what is just and right?”

Amenhotep, Son of Hapu burst out laughing. The boy’s sense of humor, even if unintended, appealed to him. He answered:

“Your chest is bigger
Than your hands and feet;
Your throat is thicker
Than your phallus.
If my stomach seems
Larger than my head,
My heart will rescue
This hard, walled space.”

Now Horemheb smiled at his mentor’s ready wit. He asked,

“We covered seven of the eight notches. We paid a visit to the seven rooms around the Sanctuary of Djehouty. Is the Sanctuary the Eighth notch?”

His Tutor just nodded. Judging by the fading light from the distant courtyard, Horemheb figured the day’s instructions were finished. Huy said:

“Go over my words, go sit in each of the seven rooms around the Sanctuary, but do not enter the Sanctuary or you will lose your life.”

He turned and left Horemheb in the darkening corridor.

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