The seven sacred oils used in ritual and found in the tombs of the pharaoh have been a secret for millennia. I have recently been researching old texts and found reference to these oils in The Book of the Dead and various other source, but had never been able to narrow down the exact definition of these oils until now.
Ancient Egypt, a civilization that flourished along the Nile River over several millennia, held a deep belief in the supernatural and the power of magic. Magic played a crucial role in the lives of ancient Egyptians, influencing their religious practices, healing rituals, and burial customs. Oils and aromatic substances were an integral part of their magical and spiritual beliefs.
The Egyptians believed that magic could influence the natural and spiritual world. Magicians and priests were skilled in using spells, incantations, and amulets to invoke divine powers of Ra to protect against evil forces. These practices were woven into daily life, ranging from healing rituals to ensuring a successful afterlife.
Oils and aromatic substances, such as myrrh, frankincense, and lotus oil, held significant spiritual value. They were believed to possess purifying and protective properties. These oils were used in religious ceremonies to ward of evil spirits, as offerings to the gods, and in the embalming and mummification processes.
In the tombs of pharaohs and high-ranking officials, containers of seven precious oils were placed alongside the deceased. These oils were intended to accompany the spirits of the departed, providing nourishment and comfort. The embalming process also involved the use of oils and mummification resins to preserve the body for the journey to the afterlife.
The tombs often contained magical texts and spells inscribed on papyri or tomb walls. These texts were intended to protect the deceased from malevolent spirits and guide them through the perilous journey to the afterlife. Magical formulas and prayers were recited by priests during burial ceremonies and rituals.
Rituals involving oils and incantations were performed to invoke divine protection and blessings for the pharaoh and the kingdom. Offerings of oils and aromatic substances were made to gods and goddesses as a sign of devotion and reverence.
Oils were not only valued for their practical uses but also for their symbolic significance. They were seen as manifestations of divine essence, linking the mortal realm with the divine. The fragrance of the oils was believed to carry prayers and offerings to the gods.
The following are believed to be the sacred seven sacred oils:
1.Myrrh: Myrrh was one of the most commonly used aromatic substances in ancient Egypt. It was often used in religious rituals, embalming practices, and as an offering to the gods.
2.Frankincense: Like myrrh, frankincense was another valuable aromatic resin used in religious ceremonies and offerings to the gods.
3.Cedarwood Oil: Cedarwood oil was believed to have purifying properties and was used in rituals associated with cleansing and protection.
4.Lotus Oil: The lotus flower had symbolic significance in ancient Egypt, and its oil was used in religious rituals and to anoint statues of deities.
5.Almond Oil: Almond oil was used in various cosmetic and ritual practices, such as anointing statues or applying to the body during religious ceremonies.
6.Olive Oil: Olive oil was not only used as a culinary staple but also had religious significance in ancient Egyptian rituals and offerings.
7.Palm Oil: Palm oil was used in lamps for lighting religious sanctuaries and ceremonial spaces.
In conclusion, ancient Egyptian magic and the use of oils were deeply intertwined with their religious beliefs and funerary practices. Oils and aromatic substances played a vital role in their rituals, providing both practical and spiritual purposes. The tombs of pharaohs held a treasure trove of sacred oils, attesting to the significance of these substances in ensuring a successful journey to the afterlife and the continuation of the pharaoh’s divine power.
Suggested books and references:
The Book of the Dead (also known as “The Book of Coming Forth by Day”): This is a collection of magical spells and prayers intended to guide the deceased through the afterlife and protect them from dangers they might encounter.
The Pyramid Texts: These texts were inscribed on the walls of pyramids during the Old Kingdom and contain spells and incantations for the pharaoh’s safe passage to the afterlife and their transformation into a divine being.
The Coffin Texts: Written on coffins and burial equipment, the Coffin Texts served a similar purpose to the Pyramid Texts, providing magical spells and rituals to assist the deceased on their journey to the afterlife.
The Book of Amduat: This text describes the journey of the sun god Ra through the underworld during the night, providing magical protection and guidance for the deceased pharaoh’s soul.
The Lamentations of Isis and Nephthys: These texts were recited during the mummification process and funeral rituals, invoking the help of the goddesses Isis and Nephthys to mourn and protect the deceased.