The Ritual of the Divine Cult

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This title is commonly given to a work consisting of sixty-six chapters, which were recited daily by the high priest of Amen-Rā, the King of the Gods, in his temple at Thebes, during the performance of a series of ceremonies of a highly important and symbolical character. The text of this Ritual is found cut in hieroglyphs on the walls of the temple of Seti I at Abydos, and written in hieratic upon papyri preserved in the Imperial Museum in Berlin. The work was originally intended to be recited by the king himself daily, but it was soon found that the Lord of Egypt could not spare the time necessary for its recital each day, and he, therefore, was personified by the high priest of each temple in which the Ritual was performed. The object of the Ritual was to place the king in direct contact with his god Amen-Rā once a day. The king was an incarnation of Amen-Rā, and ruled Egypt as the representative upon earth of the god. He drew his power and wisdom direct from the god, and it was believed that this required renewal daily. To bring about this renewal of the divine spirit in the god’s vicegerent upon earth, the king entered the temple in the early morning, and performed ceremonies and recited formulæ that purified both the sanctuary and himself. The spirit passed into the body of the king, and the divine power and wisdom, which were in the king as the god’s representative, were renewed. This can be considered as one of the first “prayer rituals”, and the purpose was to renew and refresh the divine energy within us. Prayer was and still is a very powerful tool and it enables you to stay on the righteous path of Maat.