Anubis and I
I met Anubis when I first became a Wiccan in 2004. I was having really bad dreams about my girlfriend dying in a car accident, and I was not sure what to do. I talked with my priestess, and she referred me to her husband who is a Khemetic Pagan. He listened to me talk about the anxiety I felt, the fear, and the uncertainty of what do with the dream, or if it was even something to worry about. He felt there was a message in it. He gave me a written spell I was to speak before I slept, asking Anubis to guide me in understanding the dream.
I went home to my dorm room that night and spoke the spell. I nearly jumped out of my skin when I saw, damn near as real as I was, Anubis standing before me. I was dumbstruck. I had never been in the presence of a God or Goddess like this before. For several minutes all I could do was look at Him, in all His glory. I was feeling a mix of terror, fear, and awe. All I had done was spoken a simple spell. I could not fathom what could make Him appear like this to me.
I eventually looked up to Him and into His kohl-black eyes. All He said to me was “I will help you.” Then, as quick as He had come, He left. I was still shaking a bit as I crawled into bed. It didn’t take me long to knock out, though. I eventually sorted out the dream, and from what I remember, it was something about my anxieties of losing my girlfriend, and feeling the hole of absence of a loved one in my life. I couldn’t shake the question, for the longest time, why He would appear like that to me.
Time passed, and the eclectic Wiccan group I was involved in broke apart. I found another group to study with. I blew through a lot of the introductory material they had, and they put me to work to find a God to work with. I kept getting drawn back to Anubis, but I was not sure if I should come to Him. After a lot of hemming and hawing on my part, my priestess had me go through a guided meditation to meet the Gods that wished to work with me.
The first part of it I was brought before an ancient Egyptian temple, censers full of incense smoking. I entered, a person censing me, and followed a priest to the throne where Anubis sat. He held His was staff in His right and an Ankh in His left. The priest left me before Him, and He towered over me. I knelt. What else can you do in the overawing presence of a God?
In His deep voice, He asked me to approach Him. I did, and He gave His Ankh and staff to two attendants. They were silent as they worked, but I found I could not take my eyes off of Him. I could smell Him, I could hear Him step towards me, could feel His breath. He was and is a beautiful, intimidating God. He told me to hold out my hand, that I had many years of work to make up for. He took a curved knife from a nearby attendant, and drew it across His, then my hand. He clasped my hand, and held it firmly there.
I do not have the words to fully describe what I felt in that moment. It was like something of Him and I rushed into one another, that something of Him imbued itself in me with permanence. I felt a rush of emotions so quick I wasn’t sure what I felt beyond moment to moment. I felt bonded to Him; He greeted me as brother. I wanted to weep, to laugh, and I embraced Him. Then, He told me it was time to leave, that I had more Gods to meet, and we would see each other soon. I left His temple, and everything faded as I went to meet the next God. This is a story for another time.
Not long after this encounter with Him, I picked up every resource I could on ancient Egypt, and especially Anubis. What time I did not spend with my girlfriend, my religious group, or at classes, I spent in research and worship. Over the year (2005), I dug into research about His priesthood. I knew I wasn’t going to be doing mummification. I was told I was to work with the lost Dead when I entered His priesthood. That intimidated me. What was I supposed to do to prepare? So I went back to all those resources.
In preparation for entering His priesthood, shaved all of my body hair off, including my eyebrows. I was told I looked something akin to Uncle Fester; all that was missing was the light bulb. I did many prayers throughout the following week or so, asking Him to bless me, purifying myself, readying myself for what was to come. The priestess invoked Him to bless me and invite me into His priesthood. However, He had a challenge for me to enter His priesthood.
I was to be ritually slain, mummified, enter the Duat and come back. I was to go through the passage presented in The Book of Coming Forth by Day and other works, and had several spells from the Book made over me. First, however, I was purified by incense, and spoke the Negative Confession. I spoke words of regrets and pain that would weigh down my heart before my priestess and my girlfriend, who was assisting the priestess. When I was ready, a knife was taken, and drawn up from my toes to the top of my head, and I fell into the arms of my girlfriend. I felt as if I had been split open, stem to stern, my guts for the world to see. I felt agony, but it was as though my mouth did not work. I felt my blood spill, but my arms wouldn’t work so I could close the wound. I was at the mercy of my priestess and her attendant to care for me.
They removed my organs, placing them into the canopic jars, speaking blessings over them that I could not hear. I was dismembered, I was mummified; I felt my body as though it was packed full of natron. I felt my brain smashed, and the world went dark. Somehow, I was still there, passively aware of what was going on. I was ritually mourned, from what I was told, but they were just echoes as I went down, down into the Underworld to be judged. Anubis met me, an Ankh in His left hand, scaled in the other. He led me down a long, dark passage on either side a throng of Gods sitting, looking at me. Torches lit the area, casting long shadows. I approached where He stopped, a winged woman sitting on a throne. She gave Anubis one of Her feathers, which He placed onto the scale. Pulling my heart from my chest, He weighed it. It was, mercifully, lighter than the feather. A door of rock lifted on the far side of the chamber, away from the throne, and I was told to enter it.
There was an expanse of desert before me, and a biting, blowing wind. I entered this world. The sun was beating down on me, and little scorpions scuttled all around. I heard something whispering as though it were behind me as I moved into this world. I wandered in the desert for a long time, seeing spirits I don’t have names for, and being halted at gates by various beings, asked questions by some and attacked by others. I saw ka spirits who had made the journey and were stuck. I saw small trees growing by oasis pools, but I did not stop. I kept walking for what seemed to me like an eternity, and eventually saw the River. On the other side I could see a palace, grand and golden with opened doors. A boat was waiting, and let me on when I asked permission to board. I reached the palace, and entered, censed by attendants on either side of the door, and my feet and body were washed. It felt as though my soul was scrubbed clean to walk in that holy house. I was bidden to approach the throne, and sitting there was Osiris. He spoke words to me that I do not remember consciously, and had me cross the Duat once again to go back to my body. When I eventually returned to the Hall of Judgment, Anubis guided me up the steps, back into consciousness.
I felt sore as hell, like I had just come out of surgery, and just wanted to sleep. I had to recover for about a week before I felt like doing much of anything outside of my daily grind and sleep. That was when my Work with Him picked up.
From then on, until about 3 years ago, I was doing regular work with Anubis on helping lost Dead find their way to wherever they needed to get to. My Work with Anubis more or less revolved around this. Until I set boundaries I would sometimes get woken up at 3 in the morning to go help some aimless spirit find its way. This Work was done sometimes every night for a few weeks on end, and others maybe once every other week. I was on call for when He needed me, whether to help lost spirits find their way, deliver a message for people, or to conduct rituals for Him. He has pushed me to own myself more, to develop my sense of self, to trust my instincts and intuition through His Work.
Then, without warning in 2008, He called to me and told me it was time to put down His service for awhile. He told me that I was to enter into another’s service. Anubis led me to Odin, and while He did not release me from His priesthood, He allowed me to put His Work on the backburner while I established my relationship with my Father, and took on His Work. So for a long while much of my Work with Anubis has stalled, and our relationship became more lax.
Our relationship is God and priest, but it also has an element of brotherhood to it. When I first began working with Him I did a lot of kneeling, genuflecting and the like. While our relationship still has elements of this, He has asked this to be less emphasized. Nowadays there’s more emphasis towards regular interaction and conversation with Him through prayer and feeding and watering His statue on my altar. A month or so ago He asked me to prepare to come back into His service alongside my service to Odin. I am not sure yet what this Work will include, but I am keeping my ears open.