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Book Review – The Initiatory Process in Ancient Egypt

The Initiatory Process in Ancient Egypt – Max Guilmot, PhD., F.R.C.


This is the first of many book reviews that will be appearing on this forum . During  the past decade, I’ve amassed a fairly respectable collection of esoteric volumes and have decided to review most of them to some extent. At only 35 pages, this book is one of the shortest reads in my collection, but does have praiseworthy qualities.

Max Guilmot was a Rosicrucian and Belgian Egyptologist. His insight into the initiatory process in Middle/Old Kingdom Egypt is evident within the first few pages. The key concepts that are conveyed in this piece rather well are that of the rites and initiations done in life and the Raising of the Dead in Temple context; the final Temple degree initiation. While the Regeneration (reintegration) topic is set in the Osirion, rather than the Great Pyramid, it is clear that the experience of transition was being fulfilled while living. The negative confessions of Ma’at and the preparations of the journey are fairly well visited in this piece. I must note that this piece must be read in a traditional esoteric interpretive way… much reading “between the lines” is required to truly understand the authors intentions and knowledge he intended to impart.

To see the Book of the Dead, (Book of the Coming Forth of Day, Book of What is in the Duat) played out as an intitiatory Rite, the true Rite of Passage, is a welcome change. A quick note: the Book of what is in the Duat, can also be interpreted as: the Book of what is in the Bardo, or even the Book of what is in the Intermediate Gap, for those with a background in Tibetan Buddhism. While that parallel has not been publicly authored before to my knowledge, it is apparent to me that access to that conscious state is a shared teaching between those Mystical branches. For those of you that choose to do so, this rarely documented relationship is an excellent topic for mediation.