When: Old Kingdom, 5th dynasty, ca. 2424 BC
Already searched: Google. Upside down and left to right, on any terms from broadly "ancient egypt" to specifics as "mystical practises", "cult worship", "furniture", "animals"....you name it.
I'm trying to get a feel for the extend of mysticism in Ancient Egyptian life. Much of healing and prescience was recorded as "magic" or "sorcery", but rather than supersticious fancy, I'm exploring how this could have been something real, i.e. energetic healing, meditations (comparative to Asian practices), and how this would work with their god image.
1) How extensive was the worship of Amun Ra in this time period? How did it differ from worshop of Atum?
- I've found that Amun WAS in fact worshipped already in these days, but not sure if he was already merged with Ra, and to which extend Ra and/or Amun were worshipped. What would his statues have looked like, what sort of services?
2) How can there be several incarnations of Horus at the same time?
- It is my understanding that Pharaoh was seen as the incarnation of Horus and son of Re. Hence, he was already son of Re from his birth onward. So how does this work when a Pharaoh is mudered/replaced by a pretender, who then also claims to be Horus incarnate? Can there be several Horus incarnates at the same time, or is there only "one" spirit of Horus? How did the Ancient Egyptians solve this paradox?
3) I'm looking for a word to describe an aura, without actually saying aura as my story is situated in Egypt, not India :P It makes sense that it is associated with Ka (lifeforce) and Ib (heart, thought, emotion), possibly a combination of both. How would they have described something like this?
4) How many priests would a small temple hold? And a large? What percentage would be made up of temporary priests (only serving 1/3rd of a year) and how much of permanent? Could temps also hold important positions? Where they initiated? Where permanent priests in higher esteem?
5) Is there any evidence for a cermony to become Pharaoh, as in, get the power associated with it, as opposed to just being King? Could it be possible that a son had to first bury his father (or predecessor) before being able to take the Pharaoh title/power? (ties in with Q2)
6) It is my understanding that priests of different temples/worshipping different gods would get along just fine, no rivalries, and that it's quite possible to worship several gods, like in Ancient Rome. Is this correct?
And more an everyday-life question:
7) If they wanted to get from A to B fast, and the Nile is not an option, how would they do it? Did they have chariots? I know there were no horses yet...if they had some sort of chariot, could an ox pull it?
If anyone is knowledgable about this particular time period in general and/or Old Kingdom religion in particular, I'd be really grateful for some more help on details and general setting!