"Road To The Duat"

"Road To The Duat"

In western mystical myths, stories, and traditions there seems to be a theme of isolated contemplation in desolate terrains. The idea of the mad prophet wandering the desert makes me think of the times in our lives when we feel the need to shut out the world. In the night of our emotional cycle we look for meaning beyond the mundane life of survival. So we venture into our own desert by taking time to be alone with the nagging feeling we've been trying to avoid by keeping ourselves occupied. We create a desert for ourselves by giving up many of the activities that before we couldn't stop doing if we tried. Not for any moral law handed down in stone, but because we no longer can take even the idea of those things. We become disgusted to a degree by anything without meaning or reason. Some people call this time a "Crisis" as in Mid life crisis, or existential crisis. The Crisis Desert is a place where a soul either cracks and crumbles back into the desert or a sage is born. When a soul encounters the sphinx of meaninglessness in the desert the soul will be faced with questions that ,if not solved properly, will destroy it. And if not destroyed the soul will be transmuted by the crucible of the desert into something better than anything gold can buy. That soul will be a generator of it's own meaning and purpose and see through the meaningless mirages that float about us. Once we are refined in the furnace we come back from the isolating desert to our community to apply the things we learned and to care for others who have yet to go to the desert or came back broken.
In my painting "Road to the Duat" I set a scene of IAME as a hermit on his way into the desert. He starts from an obelisk that marks the beginning on the treacherous path before him.
We see a colossal statue of Anubis the Opener of Ways overlooking the path to warn travelers from that point they leave the Land of the Living. Further in the distance we see a shining Ankh at the end of one of the gorges. The Ankh is a beacon for the soul to keep it's eye on. As long as one keeps looking at Eternity the soul will stay on the path to the Duat and discover eternal life. The flying pyramid above is the ship which the ancient incarnation of IAME used to transport across the planes of perception. An ancient technology that fell into forgetfulness due to the priesthood of IAME hiding knowledge from all but a few initiated followers. These followers then being killed before passing on their knowledge took the ancient technology to the other side with them. Because of the fear of those that rule losing their power all knowledge was forgotten for a time. But what is forgotten can be remembered and what was lost can be found. 

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