There are more things in heaven and earth than are dreamt of in your philosophy – (Shakespeare).
This pretty much explains my underlying approach to writing fiction and I have naturally applied myself to the ancient Egyptian story board. The opportunities for expressing the above enigma are overflowing.
They were one of the earliest peoples to take the first steps into a civilized state following the hunter-gatherer period. The transition was forced on them by natural occurrence: The Sahara was a vast tundra that gradually turned to desert when the monsoon winds changed at the end of the last ice age (about 8000 years ago.)
Farming communities settled on the banks of the Nile with its bountiful agricultural potential – water, sun and a beneficent annual flood that dumped another layer of fertilizer onto a wide strip on each bank. Four harvests a year meant no-one went hungry. Because they were boxed in by a big desert they were safe from invasion and their old ways stayed with them, undiluted by foreign influence. Shamanism made the journey from the roaming life of the hunter-gatherer to the farms.
There are other subconscious states of mind (like shamanism) that lay dormant in our ancient primal mind (from our long time beneath the sea) that can still rise to the surface when required, dependent on our perceptive intuition.
The ancient Egyptians developed skills with these faculties – a priest’s name with Ka in it meant he’d experienced a controlled out of body experience. Usually to the halls of judgement to practice for the big day when he died.
Complicated rules were involved to take them safely through the underworld to the gates of paradise. Not always though, I imagine that having acquired the skill for disembodied flight, they found other regions to explore. This access to the Astral Plane is a theme I investigate thoughtfully in The Radiant Chamber and The Hollow Ring.
I’ve been a singer in a band, travelled the world before deciding on art college to expand my knowledge in an interesting field of study. This was followed by a period of training in antique furniture restoration which led to the formation of a family business dealing in antiques and artefacts with my french polishing wife beside me, rearing a family and having a fine old time.
History catches my attention on a daily basis because I handle old things in our workshop and they talk to me. I don’t hold conversations with chairs or card tables but I can feel the presence of the people who made them, who poured their problems into the job in hand, embedding a remnant of emotion in the material.
Art and poetry feed my need for creative contact with the present.
I live alongside buildings and castles from the medieval period of the British Isles (known as UK) with very ancient stone circles over the horizon, not far away, planted by distant ancestors as lines of sight on the movement of the celestial dome. The observer standing in the centre, maybe, no-one knows. Abundant theories as you can imagine. (These fascinating musings on the preoccupations of my distant ancestors, burn in my blood.)
Close by is the mountain where the blue stone was quarried before dragging it 240 miles to Stonehenge to use as capstones for the central pillars. Why it was so important to use this particular stone is lost in time, but the latest theory is that the mountain had healing qualities. Relocating some of its power to the supreme architecture of the ancient Britons may have been a way to authenticate Stonehenge as the principal place of worship.
Some few thousand miles away in Egypt, a considerably more sophisticated form of building had developed and pyramids were going up, built by a nation confident in its beliefs, examining the same night sky and sifting through visions from their perspective.