Ancient Egypt: The Light of the World
A Work of Reclamation and Restitution in Twelve Books
Book Twelve - The Group in Bethany
The canonical Gospels may be described as different collections of “episodes” and “sayings”, and one of the most disconnected of these episodes is to be found in the raising of Lazarus from the tomb that [Page 842] “was a cave” (John XI. 38), which contains a version of the resurrection of Osiris from the cave. The subject of all subjects in the religious mysteries of the Egyptians was the resurgence of the human soul from death and its transformation into an eternal spirit. This is the foundation of the Book of the Dead or Ritual of the resurrection. So far as we know, this resurrection was originally represented in the mysteries of Memphis, where Kheper-Ptah was the divinity that rose again in mummy-form from which the soul was seen to issue forth as a divine hawk. On entering Amenta as a still living being, though but a soul in matter, the Osiris, late deceased, addresses the god in the character of those powers who effect the triumph of Osiris over all his adversaries, the chief of whom is Horus, in whose name he is magically assimilated to the Son of God, and thus is one with Horus in his resurrection from the dead.
It has now been shown that the resurrection of Osiris in Annu has been partially reproduced as the raising of Lazarus in Bethany. Osiris reposing in Annu is an image of the soul inert in matter or in decay and death. Hence he was portrayed in the likeness of the mummy called “the breathless one”, also the god with the non-beating heart, who is laid out in the burial-place as a corpse-like form lying extended at full length, awaiting his resurrection from the funeral couch, or the transfiguration into the risen sahu of the glorified. In his first advent Horus is the son of Seb, God of earth. In his second, he is the son of Ra, the Holy Spirit. It is in this latter character that he enters Amenta to represent the resurrection of the Osiris in the earth of eternity.
The resurrection of the sun from out the grave of night; the re-arising of vegetation from the grip of winter; and of the waters returning periodically from their source; that is the resurrection in external nature; it was, in short, the resurrection of new life from the old, in a variety of phenomena, mystically imaged by zootypes like the serpent of Rannut; the frog or beetle of Ptah; the shoot of papyrus, or the green branch of endless years. The doctrine culminated in a resurrection of the soul of human life from the body of death that was imaged by the mummy-Osiris, the god who in his rising again united all phases of the doctrine under one type of the resurrection, viz., that of the risen mummy defecated to the consistency of a sahu, or a spiritual body. It is as the reconstituter of his father in Amenta that Horus raises Osiris from the tomb. He calls the mummy to come forth and assume the likeness of Ra the later god. Osiris is now glorified by Ra the Holy Spirit. The mummy being an image of the earlier body-soul that was transubstantialized into spirit. As it is said, Osiris is “renewed in an instant”, and it is his son Horus who thus establishes him upon “the pedestal of Tum” (Atum Ra) the god in spirit (Rit., ch. 182).
The resurrection of the human soul in the after-life was the central fact of the Egyptian religion, and the transfigured, re-erected mummy, otherwise called the Karast, was a supreme symbol. The opening day of New Year, the day of “Come thou to me”, was named from the resurrection, which was solar in the mythos and spiritual in the eschatology. The mummy-type was divinized to preserve intact that bodily form which suffered dissolution after death. This, as mummy [Page 843] of the god in matter, was a type inviolate and imperishable. Osiris in his coffin does not see corruption. In him was life for evermore. And as with the divine exemplar, so was it postulated for all who died in Osiris. He was terribly mutilated by the evil Sut, and his mummy had to be joined together again piecemeal, for as it is said to Osiris, “I come to embalm thee”, thou hast existence “with thy members” when these were put together. And again, “I have come myself and delivered the god from that pain and suffering that were in trunk, in shoulder and in leg”. “I have come and healed the trunk, and fastened the shoulder and made firm the leg” (ch. 102, Renouf). This was in reconstituting the personality, which was performed in a mystery when the different parts of Osiris, the head, the vertebrae, the thigh, the leg, the heel were collected at the coffin (Rit., ch. 18). But the god in matter was also the god in spirit according to the mystery or modus operandi of the Resurrection; or he became so by being blended with Ra in his resurrection.
In the Kamite mythos as in the totemic sociology, the son (of the mother) was earlier than the father.
When it is said in the texts, “I am a son begotten of his father; I am a father begotten of his son”, the sense of the expression turns on the son of the mother having been earlier than the father of the son.
Child-Horus, Har-si-Hesi, is the mother’s son. Mother and son, as As-Ar; Isis and child, passed into the complex of Asar or Osiris, the one great god in whom all previous powers were merged and unified at last. Isis had embodied a soul in matter or flesh, as her child, when there was as yet no God the Father, no God the Son, no Horus in spirit. This fatherhood of the spirit was founded in Atum-Ra the father of spirits. Thence followed the sonship in spirit of Horus in his second character as divine adult. Ra in spirit represented the supreme type of deity whose symbol is the sun or solar hawk. Osiris remained the god in matter as the mummy in Amenta; Ra is described as calling on Osiris in the resurrection and is also said to bid the mummy “come forth”, when the deity in matter was to be united with the god in spirit. But Horus, the Son of God, the beloved only begotten son, is now the representative of Ra and the chief agent in the raising of the mummy-Osiris from the dead. He is the son who comes to the assistance, not only of the father, for the mummy-Asar is both Isis and Osiris in one body. Hence it is said in the chapter by which the tomb is opened for the Osiris to come forth, “I am Horus the reconstituter of his father, who lifteth up his father, and who lifteth up his mother with his wand (rod or staff)” (Rit., ch. 92, Renouf). As it is said in the Ritual (ch. 78), “it is Horus who hath reconstituted his father and restored him — “after the mutilation of his body by the murderer Sut. He descends into the funeral land of darkness and the shadow of death. He opens the Tuat to drive away the darkness so that he may look upon his father’s face. He says pathetically, “I am his beloved son. I have come to pierce the heart of Sut and to perform all duties to my father” (ch. 9, Renouf). Horus the prince in Sekhem also uplifts his father as Osiris-Tat with his two arms clasped behind him for support (ch. 18). In this mythical character of the son who gives life, reconstitutes, restores and re-establishes his father, the Egyptians continued an inner African type of the “Son who makes [Page 844] his Father”. Miss Kingsley called attention to a function of the Oil-river-Chief who has to observe the custom of “making his father” once every year. The custom is sacred and symbolical, as the deceased chief need not be his own real father, but must be his predecessor in the headmanship (Kingsley, M., West African Studies, p. 146). This custom of “making his father” by the son survived and was perpetuated in the mythology of Egypt, in which Horus is the son who makes, or “reconstitutes”, his father once a year, and describes it as one of his duties in the Book of the Dead. This resurrection of the father as the soul of life in matter, i.e., the mummy-soul, by Horus the son, is the great mystery of the ten mysteries which are briefly described in the 18th chapter of the Ritual.
In a later scene there is another description of the resurrection of Osiris, in which the mummy-god is raised by his son Horus from the tomb. As it is said, “Horus exalteth his father Osiris in every place, associating Isis the Great with her sister Nephthys” as the two women at the tomb. “Rise up, Horus, son of Isis, and restore thy father Osiris” — that was Osiris in the inert and breathless condition of the mummy. “Ha, Osiris, I have come to thee. I am Horus, and I restore thee unto life upon this day with the funeral offerings and all good things for Osiris”. “Rise up, then, Osiris. I have stricken down thine enemies for thee; I have delivered thee from them”. “I am Horus on this fair day at the beautiful coming forth of thy powers (in his resurrection), who lifteth thee up with himself on this fair day as thine associate God”. “Ha, Osiris, thou hast received thy sceptre, thy pedestal, and thy flight of stairs beneath thee”. On the coffin of Nes-Shu-Tefnut, at Vienna, it is said: “Horus openeth for thee thy two eyes that thou mayest see with them in thy name of Ap-Uat”. (Renouf, Book of the Dead, ch. 128, note 8.) Horus as son of Ra the Holy Spirit in the eschatology is now higher in status than the mummy-god, the father and mother in matter.
Hence he rises in Amenta as the resurrection and the life to his own father Osiris.
Horus as the divine heir had now been furnished with the double force. The gods rejoice to meet him walking on the way to Annu, and the hall of the horizon or house in Annu where divine perfumes are awaiting him and mourning does not reach him, and where the guardians of the hall do not overthrow the mysterious of face who is in the sanctuary of Sekhem. That is Osiris, who is not dead but sleeping in Annu, the place of his repose, awaiting the call that bids the mummy to “come forth to day”. Horus, the deliverer of his father, reaches him in the train of Hathor, who is Meri, the beloved by name in the Ritual.
Thus Horus follows Meri to the place where Asar lies buried in the sepulchre, as Jesus follows Mary, who had come forth to meet him on the way to Bethany (John XI. 29, 33). Jesus reaches the tomb of Lazarus in the train of Mary and Martha. Horus makes the way for Osiris. He repulses the attack of Apap, who represents negation or non-being=death. The portrait of Horus in this scene is very grand. His face is glorified and greatened by the diadem which he wears as the lord of strength. His double force is imaged by two lions. A loud voice is heard upon the horizon as Horus lifts the truth to Ra, and the way is made for Osiris to come [Page 845] forth at his rising from the cave. So Jesus “cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth!” and “he that was dead came forth bound hand and foot with grave-bands”. In the original the mummy-Osiris comes forth as Amsu, with one arm only released from the bandages. In the “discourse of
Horus” to his Father at his coming forth from the sanctuary in Sekhem to see Ra, Horus says, “I have given thee thy soul, I have given thee thy strength, I have given thee thy victory, I have given thee thy two eyes (mertae), I have given thee Isis and Nephthys”, who are the two divine sisters, the Mary and Martha of Beth-Annu (Records, vol. 10, p. 163). In showing that “mourning does not reach him”, Jesus “abode at that time two days in the place where he was”. After the sisters had sent to say that Lazarus was sick he waited until he was dead on purpose to perform the more effective miracle. He was in Bethany, “the place where John was at the first baptizing” (cf. John I. 28 with John X. 40, 41), but it took him two more days to get there at this particular time. So that Lazarus had been buried four days when Jesus arrived in the village. The tomb of Osiris was localized in Annu, the solar birthplace. Osiris, under one of his titles, is the
great one in Annu. Annu is the place of his repose. “I go to rest in Annu, my dwelling”, says Osiris. The deceased also goes to rest in Annu because it was the place of repose for Osiris the god (ch. 57, 4, 5). Jesus goes to rest in Bethany. The place of repose for Osiris was his sepulchre in Annu. The place of repose for Lazarus is the cave in Bethany. It was in Annu that the soul was united to its spiritual body. Annu is termed the place “where thousands reunite themselves” soul and body. The speaker says, “Let my soul see her body. Let her unite herself to her sahu” —that is, to the glorified body which can neither be destroyed nor injured; the future body in which the soul would be incorporated to pass from out the tomb. Annu is called the abode of “those who have found their faces”. These are the mummy-forms, from whose faces the napkin had been removed. The house or beth of Osiris, then, was in Annu. “He rests in Annu, which is his dwelling”. The names of its builders are recorded. Num raised it on its foundation.
Seshet (or Sefekh) built it for him as his house of refuge and of rest (Rit., 57, 4, 5). The house of Osiris in Annu was called Hat-Saru, the house of the Prince — that is, the abode of Horus when he came to raise Osiris from the tomb. It was the sanctuary of Osiris who was attended by the two Mertae or Merti, the pair of divine sisters better known by the names of Isis and Nephthys. The household proper consists of Osiris and those two sisters who watch over him. Mer denotes the eye, ti is two, and these are the two eyes or two watchers over Osiris in the abode that is the place of his burial and rebirth. The two sisters as watchers are the two Mer, one of whom becomes Mary, the other Martha, as the two merti in Bethany=Beth-Annu. The triumph of Osiris was effected over his adversaries by Horus in the house of
the Prince in Annu or Heliopolis, and his supreme triumph was in his resurrection when he was recalled to life and raised up from the sepulchre by Horus (Rit., ch. 1). The raising up of Osiris the father by Horus the son is doctrinally based upon the father living over again in the son. Under the beetle-type Kheper [Page 846] as father transformed into the son. It was the same with Atum-Iu, in whom the father became the son and then the son transformed into the father. The mystery was deepened in the Osirian drama by super adding a more spiritual form of the fatherhood in Ra the Holy Spirit. The deceased Osiris is in possession of the funeral meals in Annu. He sits beneath the trees of Annu in the train of Hathor-Meri (Rit., ch. 68, 10). Annu is the place of provisions for the manes. Thousands are nourished or fed in Annu
(89). Deceased in Annu (82) receives his vesture or Taau-garment from the goddess Tait, who is over him. This is an illusion to the mummy-case from which the left arm was not yet freed when Amsu-Horus rose up in the sepulchre. The goddess Tait is a form of one of the two divine sisters. She cooks the food and brings it to the deceased, who is either Osiris, or the Osiris, the God or the manes. Annu was also the place of the festivals of Osiris. One of these was kept on the sixth day of the month. “I am with Horus”, says the speaker on the day when the festivals of Osiris are celebrated, “on the feast of the sixth day of the month” (ch. 1, lines 23, 24). With this we may compare the following statement: “Jesus therefore six days before the passover came to Bethany, where Lazarus was, whom Jesus raised from the dead. So they made him a supper there” (John xii.) The two sisters were present. “Martha served, and Mary anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped them with her hair”.
Annu is described as a green and pleasant place, an oasis in the desert of Amenta created for the suffering Osiris, and the two divine sisters were given him there for his comfort and delight (ch. 17, 138, 139). The tree of life stood in Annu, as the sycamore, tamarisk, or persea tree, which was personified in Hathor-Meri or Isis. The manes were feasted “under the foliage of the tamarisk” (ch. 124, 6), the branches of which are described as the beautiful arms of the goddess, and the foliage as her hair, when she herself was the tree beneath which the Osiris found refreshing shade. It seems that not only the clouds of dawn, but also the foliage of the tamarisk tree may have imaged the hair of the goddess. Osiris-Ani is found in Annu with the hair of Isis spread over him (Rit., ch. 17). In another text the hair is assigned to Hathor — one of whose names is Meri (ch. 35, 1). And this is probably related to the story of Mary wiping the feet of Jesus with the hair of her head. Isis is frequently portrayed kneeling at the feet of Osiris in Annu. It is she who says: “I who drop the hair which hath loosely fallen upon my brow — I am Isis, when she concealeth herself” (ch. 17, 135). Osiris in Annu, like Lazarus in Bethany, was not dead but sleeping. In the text of Har-hetep (Rit., ch. 99) the speaker who personates Horus is he who comes to awaken Asar out of his sleep. Also, in one of the early funeral texts it is said of the sleeping Asar: “The Great One waketh, the Great One riseth; Horus raises Osiris upon his feet”. Jesus denies that Lazarus is dead. “Our friend Lazarus is fallen asleep. I go that I may awake him out of his sleep” (ch. XI, 11), which is genuine Egyptian doctrine. The manes in Amenta were not looked upon as dead, but sleeping, breathless of body, motionless of heart. The deity Osiris was not dead. And in his likeness the Osiris lived. Hence Horus comes to wake the sleepers in their coffins, or Osiris in his cave. [Page 847]
It was in Bethany that “Jesus wept”. It is the place of weeping for the dead Lazarus. Mary wept, the Jews wept, and “Jesus wept”. No wonder. This is the place of weeping by name in the Ritual, where the Osiris lay in his burial. It was here he was inert and motionless. The Osiris says: “I am motionless in the fields of those who are dumb in death. But I shall wake, and my soul will speak in the dwelling of Tum, the Lord of Annu”. The abode of Tum in Annu being=Bethany. Then he rises from the tomb and appears at the door, and says, “I arrive at the confines of earth. I tread the dwelling of the god Rem-Rem”. Rem signifies weeping: and in the Litany of Ra this god is designated “Remi the Weeper”. Thus Jesus is portrayed in the character of “Remi the Weeper” in the place of weeping for the dead Osiris in Beth-Annu, who is here represented as the dead Lazarus in Bethany (Rit., 75, Renouf). Jesus comes as “Remi the Weeper” to weep for the inert Osiris, that is, as Horus who comes to the motionless Osiris on the day which is called
“Come thou to me”. Ra is said to make the mummy “come forth” (The Litany of Ra, 68; Rit., 17). Jesus cries with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come forth!” and “he that was dead came forth, bound hand and foot with grave-bands: and his face was bound about with a napkin” (John XI. 43, 44). The picture is completed in the Roman catacombs, where the risen Lazarus is an Egyptian mummy: the likeness of the mummy-Osiris, who is beckoned forth by Horus with his staff.
According to the dramatic representation in the Mysteries, Osiris is slain by the adversary Sut, and is imaged in Amenta as a mummy. The father lives again in the son; hence his son Horus descends into the nether-world to avenge, reconstitute and raise Osiris from his corpse-like state. He comes as a living soul from Ra the Holy Spirit, who is the Father in heaven, “to raise up the hand which is motionless” (Rit., ch. 5). “He lifts inert Osiris with his two arms” (ch. 18). He exclaims, “Ha! Osiris, I am come to thee: I am Horus, and I restore thee to life upon this day, with the funerary offerings and all good things for Osiris.
Rise up, then, Osiris (ch. 128). Horus hath raised thee”. It is said, “Hail, Osiris, thou art born twice” (Rit., ch. 170). In some texts it is Ra who bids the mummy come forth on the day of “Come thou to me” (Rit., ch. 17). Taht says: “I give Ra to enter the mysterious cave in order that he may revive the heart of him whose heart is motionless” (ch. 182). After the raising of Osiris, Taht says, “I have celebrated the festival of Eve’s provender”, or supper, which came to be called the Last Supper. The raising of Lazarus is likewise commemorated by a supper. “So they made him a supper there” (John XII. 2).
When Osiris, or the Osiris, “takes the form of a living soul” (Rit., ch. 181), it is said, “thy son Horus reconstitutes thee. Arise, Osiris, thy hands have been given to thee” — he is freed from the mummybandages — “stand up living for ever”.“The two sisters Isis and Nephthys come to thee; they will fill thee with life, health, and strength, and all the joy that they possess. They gather for thee all kinds of good things within thy reach” (ch. 181). Amongst other ceremonies performed in the Amenta at the raising of the mummy who is “called aloud” from the sepulchre the Osiris is freed from the bandages with which the corpse was bound. So when Lazarus [Page 848] was called in a loud voice to come forth, “He that was dead came forth bound hand and foot with grave-bands, and his face was bound about”. In the resurrection ceremony of Osiris he is divested of his funerary garment and receives a bandage of the finest linen from the hands of the attendant of Ra, the Father in heaven (Rit., ch. 172). He eats of “the meat which has been prepared by Ra in his holy place”; he washes his feet in silver basins, which have been sculptured by the divine architect Ptah-Sekari (ch. 172). In the Gospel, Jesus, “knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he came forth from God and goeth unto God, riseth from supper, and layeth aside his garments; and he took a towel and girded himself. Then he poureth water into a basin and began to wash the disciples feet, and to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded” (ch. XIII. 4-6).
Taking Lazarus, then, to represent the mummy-Osiris, we find the “raising of Lazarus” celebrated in a hymn expressly devoted to the subject. It is one of the ceremonies that were performed in the underworld. The Osiris is designated him “who is called aloud”. “O thou who art called aloud, thou who art called aloud, thou the lamented, thou art glorified. O thou who art raised up, thou art raised up. N. has been raised up by means of all the manifold ceremonies performed for him”. The mummy-Osiris lay upon the funeral couch in the mysterious cave with the two sisters in attendance. Horus enters this cave as representative of Ra, to revive the heart of him whose heart is motionless. He says, “Hail, Osiris, thou art born twice! Arise on thy bed and come forth! Come! Come forth”. Osiris or the Osiris is called with a loud
voice. In the hymn of the resurrection, he is addressed nine times over in the words “O Thou who art called aloud!” (chs. 170-2). They call him to come forth “like a god” from the mysterious cave “to meet the powers of Annu”. The resurrection is celebrated with rejoicings, “thou hearest how thou art glorified through all thy house!” There are nine verses in the hymn and each one opens with the address, “O thou who art called aloud!” That is for his rising up and coming forth from the cave in Annu (ch. 172). The words “O thou who art called aloud” had become the title of the hymn, as we say “the Magnificat”, or “the Te Deum” (Naville, Rit., ch. 172).
The latest dynasty of Egyptian deities were born of Seb the earth-father and Nut the mother-heaven. This was the Osirian group, consisting of five persons, viz., (1) Asar, (2) the elder Horus, (3) Sut, (4) Isis, (5) Nephthys, which may be called the family in Annu and shown to be the originals of the group in Bethany.
Sut, the betrayer, is the only one omitted from the Gospel. The remaining four — Lazarus=Asar; Jesus=Horus; Mary=Isis; Martha=Nephthys — are also represented sometimes in the Ritual without Sut (ch. 128). When it is said that Horus exalteth his father Osiris in every place he associates Isis the Great with her sister Nephthys. Sut is not included in the group at Annu. On the other hand, Sut, in the person of the betrayer, is present at the mortuary meal in the canonical Gospels. At present we only need to identify Lazarus with Osiris, Jesus with Horus, and the two sisters of Lazarus with the two sisters of Osiris. Osiris lying as a breathless mummy in the cave, [Page 849] when Horus comes to raise him from the dead, is watched over and protected by the two Mertae-sisters, one at the head and one at the feet
as keepers of the body, and watchers in the burial-place. The two mertae are mentioned in chapter 58. In this the Osiris cries, “Let the door be opened to me” as the Osiris buried in Amenta. “Who is with thee?” is asked. The reply is, “It is the mertae”, the two watchers over Osiris in the sepulchre. The deceased then asks that he may have milk, cakes and meat given to him at the house which is in Annu, the Kamite prototype of Bethany. On the way to the sepulchre in Annu Horus meets the two sister-goddesses, saying to them “Hail, ye pair of goddesses Mertae, sister pair, Mertae! I inform you of my words of power. I am Horus, the son of Isis, and I am come to see my father Osiris”, and to raise him up from the sepulchre.
Jesus on his way to the cave of Lazarus likewise informs Martha of his words of power, saying “thy brother shall rise again”. “I am the resurrection and the life”. “He that believeth on me shall never die” (John XI. 25, 26). “Now as they went on their way a certain woman named Martha received him (Jesus) into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at the Lord’s feet (like Isis) and heard his word”. And because Mary took her place at the feet of Jesus it is said that she had “chosen the good part” (Luke X. 38, 42). The two sisters in Bethany are the Aramaic or Hebrew replica of Isis and Nephthys, who are the attendants upon Osiris; the two divine sisters of Osiris in Annu. Mary and Martha are the two sisters of Lazarus in Bethany. Horus loved the two dear sisters Isis and Nephthys, and is especially denominated the son who loves his father, i.e., Asar, whom he raises from the tomb according to the dramatic representation. Jesus is said to have “loved Martha and her sister, and Lazarus” (John XI. 5).
Jesus saith, “Our friend Lazarus is fallen asleep, but I go that I may awake him out of sleep” (John XI. 4, 11). So is it in the Ritual. Horus says, “I go to give movement to the manes. I go to comfort him who is in a swoon”, which is equivalent to Lazarus who sleeps (ch. 64). He goes to give life at some particular spot and in doing this he comes from Sekhem to Annu where the mummy of Osiris rested in the house there=Beth-Annu or Bethany. The Osiris does not die. The Ritual has no recognition of death, save as final extinction when death and evil die together. Osiris sleeps, he is breathless or in a swoon. He lies inert, his heart is motionless pro tem. Osiris thus awaits his change and resurrection; but he cannot die who is the conqueror of death and the bondage of the grave. The resurrection of Osiris at the coming of Horus is glanced at when the speaker personates him and says, “I am the great first heir (or inheritor) taking possession of Urt-hat” — otherwise the inert, sleeping, motionless Osiris. “Strength of Osiris is my name. I save him” from the impurities of matter. “He lives by me”. The speaker is Horus with his father Ra, just as Jesus is with his father in the scene of raising Lazarus (John 11, 45). The resurrection applies to Osiris in matter whom Horus comes to quicken and raise up from the dead or, as it is rendered, “from the impurities of Osiris” in matter. The “corruption which befell Osiris” in [Page 850] his mummy-condition is mentioned in the Ritual more than once. This also befalls the corpse of Lazarus, but is more grossly stated in the Gospel. Jesus comes to raise up Lazarus when he has been in the tomb four days, and Martha saith, “Lord, by this time he stinketh” (John XI. 39). In the Ritual, when Horus comes to those who
are in their cells he utters the words of Ra to raise the dead, and says, as the passage is rendered by Budge, “I am the herald of his words (his father’s) to him whose throat stinketh”; that is, to the sufferer from corruption in the tomb (Book of the Dead, ch. 38B, line 4).
Isis not only stands or sits at the feet of Osiris, she is the Seat personified. She carries the sign of the seat upon her head. Her name of Hes signifies the seat. And Mary, who takes the place of Isis, is described as sitting at the feet of Jesus, whilst Martha is busy working about the house and left serving alone. A further allusion to the Lady of the Seat may be found when Martha heard that Jesus was coming, and went forth to meet him, whilst “Mary still sat in the house” (John XI. 20, 21), thus fulfilling the character of Isis, the seat, or the sitter. There is more than meets the eye in the sign of the seat which is borne by Isis. To sit is also to brood as a bird. Isis as sitter is the brood-hen, the incubator in Annu. Under this type of the sitting-hen she sits at the feet of Osiris to bring him to rebirth. Mary also sat in the house, and kept her seat at the feet of Jesus. Nephthys, the other divine sister in Annu, carries the sign of a house on her head. She is called mistress of the house. She is the benevolent, saving sister. This in the “history” is rendered by Martha being the housekeeper and by Mary sitting in the house while her sister goes forth to meet the Lord (John XI. 21). In Aramaic, Martha denotes the mistress of the house, and Nephthys, one of the two mertae, is the mistress of the house, who carries the house as a symbol in her head-dress. The name of Nephthys in Greek represents nebt-hat, the mistress of the house in Egyptian.
The two sisters are the merti or mertae, who were the keepers of the double house in attendance upon Horus, or Jesus. They receive the Sun-God at his entrance to the mountain in the West, and stand together by him when he issues forth at dawn from Beth-Annu, or Bethany, in the East. The name of the secret shrine in which the mummy-Osiris was upraised by “the two arms of Horus, Prince of Sekhem”, is “the witness of that which is raised”, or the witness to the Resurrection (ch. 17). Those who are present in this scene are “Osiris, Isis, Nephthys, and Horus the reconstituter of his Father”, and these, as we maintain, are the prototypes or original characters of Lazarus, Mary, Martha and Jesus in the scene of the Resurrection in Bethany.
Osiris rose from the dead to enter the little golden ark of the moon on the third day. He was buried on the 17th of Hathor and the resurrection in the lunar ark was on the 19th; that is, on the third day. In the solar mythos he rises again the day after the burial, and as the grain he rose again in forty days. But there is another mystery of Osiris, an account of which is given by Plutarch, probably from the writings of Manetho. This he calls the “Mourning of the Goddess”, which began on the 17th of Hathor, the day on which Osiris was betrayed at the last supper and mutilated by the adversary Sut. He says the “Mourning of the Goddess” lasted [Page 851] “four” days altogether, beginning on the 17th, the day of betrayal and death of Osiris; and on the 19th it was proclaimed by the priests that the lost Osiris was found because he had then entered into the ark of the moon where the light was once more safe. He tells us that amongst other melancholy things that were acted on this occasion, as the mourning of the cow for Osiris the bull of Amenta, a gilded cow, the golden Hathor, was covered with a black linen pall and exposed to public view for four days at the mourning of the goddess, or of the cow, for the lost Osiris. Here, then, are the four days of mourning which are repeated in the one Gospel that chronicles the raising of Lazarus from the dead after “he had been in the tomb four days already”. Plutarch calls this mystery the mourning of the goddess. But there are always two mourners for Osiris, Isis and Nephthys, who are his sisters.
The process of reducing the fairy-godmother’s coach-and-six to the status of a one-horse cab may be seen in the Gospel according to Luke in getting rid of Osiris. The pair of sisters, Martha and Mary, appear in this Gospel, but without their brother Lazarus, and also without the resurrection. After all that has now been done towards identifying Bethany with the house in Annu and the nest of the two sisters, the two sisters with Isis and Nephthys, and the Christ with Horus, it cannot be considered far-fetched if we look upon Lazarus as a form of the Osiris that was dead and buried and raised to life again. As to the name, the Egyptian name of the Greek Osiris is Hesar, or Asar. And when we take into consideration that some of the matter came from its Egyptian source through the Aramaic and Arabic languages (witness the Arabic Gospel of the Infancy) there is little difficulty, if any, in supposing that the Al (article the) has been
adopted through the medium of the Arabic, or derived from the Hebrew prenominal stem , to emphasize a thing, as in the Osiris, which passed into the article Al for “the” in Arabic, and was prefixed to the name of Osiris as Al-Asar, which, with the Greek “s” for suffix becomes L-azarus. The connecting link whereby Al-Asar was turned into Lazarus, the Osiris, was in all likelihood made in the Aramaic language, which had its root-relations with the Egyptian. Hieroglyphic papyri are among its monumental remains, as well as the inscription of Carpentras.
Various representations of the raising of Lazarus in the Roman catacombs show the mummy risen and standing in the doorway of the tomb. The figure of the supposed Jesus Christ is in front of the sarcophagus calling upon Lazarus to come forth, whilst touching the mummy with a wand or rod which he holds in his hand. In the chapter “by which the tomb is opened to the soul and to the shade of the person that he may come forth to day and have the mastery of his feet” (Rit., ch. 92) the deliverer Horus says, “I am Horus who lifteth up his father with his staff”. This mode of raising Osiris by Horus with his staff or rod completes the picture of the resurrection of Lazarus. The rod that is waved by Jesus at the raising of Lazarus is the symbolic sceptre in the hand of Horus when he raises the Osiris. In every instance Lazarus is a mummy made after the Egyptian fashion. It is a bandaged body that had been soaked in salt and pitch which was at times so hot that it charred the bones [Page 852] (Budge, “The Mummy”, pp.153-155). Seventy days was the proper length of time required for embalming the dead body in making an Egyptian mummy. Lazarus when portrayed in the Roman catacombs comes forth from the tomb as an eviscerated, embalmed and bandaged mummy, warranted to have been made in Egypt.
Now, according to the Gospel narrative, there was no time for this, as Lazarus had only been dead four days. The mummy, anyway, is non-historical; and it is the typical mummy called the Osiris, Asar in Egyptian, El-Asar in Aramaic, and Lazarus with the Greek terminal in the Gospel assigned to John. The coffin of Osiris, constellated in the Greater Bear, was known to the Arab astronomers as the Bier of Lazarus. Asar, or the Osiris, is the mummy in the coffin, and with the coffin of Osiris identified as the bier of Lazarus it follows perforce that the mummy-Osiris in the coffin is one with Lazarus on the bier. The gnostic pictures in the Roman catacombs suffice to prove the identity. They show that Lazarus was buried as a mummy, and that he rose again in mummy-form. Thus the dead Osiris of Egypt, El-Asar or
Lazarus, as portrayed in Rome, and the story of the death, burial, and resurrection are the same wheresoever and howsoever that story may be told. The bier of Lazarus, followed by the mourning sisters, was only known by that name because it had been constellated in the starry vault of the heavens ages earlier than the present era as the coffin of Osiris.
It is satisfactory to find that both forms of Asar are preserved in the Gospels, one of which was the god Osiris, the other the Osiris as manes. Lazarus in his resurrection represents the God; Lazarus the poor man of the parable represents the manes in Amenta who is designated the Osiris.
The story of the rich man and the beggar Lazarus related in the Gospel of Luke (ch. XVI. 19) is told at length in the second tale of Khamuas as Egyptian. This contains a scene from the Judgment in Amenta which is represented in the vignettes to the Ritual. Setme and his son Si-Osiris enter the Tuat as manes.
They pass through the seven halls (Rit., ch. 144) into the great judgment hall. They see the figure of Osiris seated on his throne of gold, “Anup the great god being on his left hand, the great god Taht upon his right, the balance being set in the midst before them”. Anup gives the word, Taht writes it down. The rich man and the poor man enter to be judged. “And behold Setme saw a great man clothed in garment of byssus (fine white linen), he being near to the place in which Osiris was”, in which position he is great exceedingly. Si-Osiris says, “My father Setme, dost thou not see this great man who is clothed in garment of byssus, he being near to the place in which Osiris is? That poor man whom thou sawest, he being carried out from Memphis, there not being a man walking after him, he being wrapped in a mat, this is he”. This refers to the funerals of the rich man and the poor man on earth previously described (lines 15-21). When the rich man was judged it was found that his evil deeds were more numerous than his good deeds; therefore they outweighed them in the scales of justice; consequently he was cast to the devourer of souls who did not allow him to breathe again for ever. “It was commanded before Osiris to cause to be thrown the burial outfit [Page 853] of that rich man whom thou sawest, he being carried out from Memphis, the praise that was made of him being great, unto this poor man named, and that they should take him (the poor man) amongst the noble spirits as a man of God that follows Osiris-Sekari (the god in his resurrection), he being near to the place in which Osiris is” (Griffith, second tale of Khamuas, pp. 149, 158). Thus the parable of the rich man and Lazarus found in a folk-tale of the first century written in Demotic is provably Egyptian and demonstrably ancient by application of the comparative process to the language. Neither the name of Lazarus nor Osiris appears in the tale of Khamuas, which is good evidence that the story was not derived from the Gospels. Thus we identify Lazarus with Osiris the mummy-god and Lazarus the poor man with Alasar as the Osiris.