The Egyptian Game Senet and Cyclic Catastrophism
This board-game was depicted in many pictographs as early as the Predynastic period (3300 BC*). Although some claim that it was originally a ‘fun’ game and only later acquired religious significance, this misconception was the result of decorative symbols that were added on certain squares in later periods. Senet was based completely upon the astronomical events of Cyclic Catastrophism (CC), which ruled the religious lives of one-hundred generations.
The most obvious aspect of this relationship is the number of squares on the Senet game-board – thirty, the number of years in each cycle of CC, which was common knowledge to every culture in the world for 3,000 years.
The Senet game moves began at the upper left – square-1, moved across the first ten squares, then down to the middle row and back ten squares, crossing to the third row and reversing direction again in a serpentine path. The number of squares of each move were determined by casting a group of sticks split lengthwise and moving a number of squares equaling the number of sticks facing upward.
Astronomically, square-1 represented the year just after the successful release of priori-Mars, initiated by the brief appearance of Hathor (its solid core), from one of its geostationary orbits. This was the beginning of a new cycle during which the planet was absent from the Earth in an orbit around the Sun for fifteen years, the teht-Hathor period. Thus, the first fourteen squares of the Senet board were without symbols – in itself a corroboration of the CC scenario. Because this period was less exciting, there was an abbreviated version of the game in which play began on the square-15 and skipped the first fourteen.
Square-15 was known as the square of ‘rebirth’, marking the year of the cycle in which priori-Mars (Horus or Ra) returned and was again captured in its same geostationary orbit of the Earth, initiating the fifteen years called the tekhi-Horus period. Game-wise this was considered a ‘lucky’ square and may have earned the player a free throw. The return (capture) of the planet posed an immediate threat, as all the water in the Mediterranean was drawn across lower Egypt toward the Himalayas, as if the Earth itself had been tilted. The pyramids were built as stable life-rafts up which all the populace scrambled until this transient flood was over. However, the Egyptians favored the next fifteen years due its tidal effect on the irrigation of eastern half of the country. Its capture was also spiritually significant because the Egyptians believed (as did other cultures) that each time it (the Duat, the sacred risen land at its north pole) had left the vicinity of the Earth it had carried the souls of the recently deceased ‘to the gods’, i.e. to the stars. As a result, upon its return in late October of the fifteenth year, was a time when seances were held all over the Earth, in hopes of contacting the souls of their deceased loved-ones. It was from this notion that ‘All Saints Day’ and its derivative ‘Halloween’ were passed down to ‘modern’ times.
Interestingly, the next square, 16, was considered unlucky and resulted in the loss of turn. Astronomically, this probably reflected the fact that every approach and capture of priori-Mars involved an element of danger, i.e. the flooding or potential for a misaligned approach of Mars to the Tibetan-Himalayan complex, as a result of which tidal forces could have caused the oceans to overflow massive land areas before the proper alignment was attained. This may have been the cause of the flood of Noah around 2250 BC.
During each 15-year geostationary orbit of Mars life got really interesting. The Earth was brightly illuminated day and night by the reflection of sunlight from priori-Mars, which was 650 times the area of the Moon and much closer to the Earth. But there were many ‘falls’ of innumerable hot rocks, red dust, water and plant life (manna) to Earth as explained in a previous post, caused by convulsions within Mars due to alignments with the Moon and Sun. Its resulting deconstruction led inevitably to its release in the thirtieth year of the cycle. Leading up to this, square-26 was called ‘rejuvenation’ but more revealing in regard to CC, it was also called ‘The Mummy Workshop’, discussed below in connection with the Sed Festival.
Square-27 was called the ‘Waters of Chaos’. Astronomically, this probably refers to the events directly related to the release of priori-Mars from its orbit in the 30th year which could not be fitted into that square. At the spring equinox of the 30th year of each cycle, the Sun, Moon and proto-Venus, then in an eccentric orbit, all became aligned with priori-Mars. Their indirect tide caused the northern ocean, today known as the ‘Oceanus Borealis’ on Mars, to overflow the sacred island at its north pole (the Duat). When this occurred, the water gushed into the largest volcanic vent on priori-Mars at its north pole, which had been vacated by the melting of rock and the upward flow of magma for the previous fifteen years, pouring down into its core where it flashed to steam. The resulting pressure forced the solid core of the planet out through its side, through the largest fault now known as Valles Marineris on Mars. The protruding solid core first appeared as the ‘Eye of Horus‘, but continued outward until it exited the planet altogether. This ejection initiated the release of the planet from earth orbit. The steam explosion within the core also shot an enormous geyser back out through the vent, causing a deluge upon the Earth, i.e. ‘The Waters of Chaos’. The water rushing into the vent formed an enormous whirlpool, the last one of which (687 BC) can still be seen as the northern ice cap of Mars.
Ritualistically, the hot, glowing, solid core, which zoomed very fast and low around the Earth to the East (which in another Egyptian text was pictured as the blood-thirsty Hathor killing men in the desert) was imagined, in the Pepi I funerary text, to be the ‘ship’ on which the deceased pharaoh’s soul flew ‘like a falcon’ ‘to the stars’. Eight days later, according to Pepi I’s funerary text, the solid core caught up to the outer shell and re-entered it. This recombined form of priori-Mars was known as Re-Horakhty, the ‘sun-god which rose into the dawn’. Thus the final Senet square, 30, symbolized by a circle with a dot in the middle, represented the reformed, complete planet, ensuring the continuation of the astronomical cycle.
The 30-Year Sed Festivals
A clue to the significance of the thirty squares on the Senet board is present in the ancient Sed Festival, celebrated upon the release of priori-Mars in the 30th year of each cycle, the popular name for which was the ‘Feast of the Tail’. This name corroborates its link to CC because the ‘tail’ referred to the long, glowing, comet-like, sulfur-gas tail of proto-Venus, which became more and more promenent as the vernal equinox of the 30th year approached.
Although no one understands the significance of the astronomical cycles on the rulers of Egypt, the famous British archaeologist Sir Arthur Evans came closest, suggesting that the 30-year Sed Festivals were instituted to replace an earlier ritual of “sacrificing” a pharaoh who was perhaps unable to continue ruling because of age or condition. These were ritual executions of the reigning pharaoh at the time to enable their funerary celebrations to coincide with the release of priori-Mars from its geostationary orbit. This view is suggested by the name of square-26 ‘The Mummy Workshop’ in that, as the 30th year spring equinox approached, the pharaoh’s body would have to have been properly mummified prior to the astronomical event.
As explained in a previous post, involving the funerary text of Pepi I [Stairway to Heaven], these spectacular events were considered the means by which the pharaoh’s soul was carried in ‘his ship (the glowing solid core of Mars) to the stars’. This idea was made possible by the fact that the astronomical cycle was comparable to the length of a human life. If a reigning pharaoh was ritually sacrificed just prior to a release of the planet, then a new king’s reign could commence at the beginning of the new astronomical cycle and if lucky he could reign for thirty years until the end of the next cycle. These events were in the minds of those playing Senet.
An obvious problem was that there was no guarantee that any pharaoh would live long enough to complete a thirty-year reign. One solution was to crown a relatively young man or even a boy at the beginning of a CC cycle to increase the chances that he would reign until the next 30-year event. Mummification was another solution to this problem, but another ruler would have to fill-in the rest of the 30-year term, which is known to have happened in many cases, but not currently understood to have been dictated by overwhelming astronomical events effecting the entire Earth. This may have been the reasoning that permitted queen Hatsupet to assume the pharaoh’s position when her husband died, extending their combined reign to 30 years.
Egyptologists believe that after the Predynastic Period, Sed Festivals became ‘jubilees’ celebrated after a ruler had held the throne for thirty years and, rather than sacrificing the reigning pharaoh, celebrated subsequent Sed Festivals every three or four years, in order to rejuvenate the pharaoh’s strength and stamina while remaining on the throne. But Manetho wrote that Pharaoh Teti, who reigned for only twelve years, was murdered by his own bodyguards ‘for unknown reasons’ … and there is a vague mention of Userkare , who may have reigned very briefly before the throne passed to Teti’s son Pepi I. This is interesting in light of the Pepi funerary text, which makes clear that his funeral coincided with the next release of priori-Mars.
Ancient Egyptian and Vedic texts are invaluable sources of knowledge concerning one-hundred 30-year encounters of Venus, Mars and Mercury (Hathor, Mars’ former solid iron core) with the Earth in the last 6,000 years. This is proven by the fact that the 30 square game of Senet was played for 3,000 years! Because these bodies (gods) dominated the heavens, the ancient world was very much more dangerous and exciting than the modern one. Ironically, one hundred generations of ancient peoples knew more about the planets than any modern astronomer or astrophysicist. This ancient knowledge still remains in exquisite detail in the ancient texts, while the ‘great minds’ of today plod arrogantly down the wrong path, in spite of Newton, Einstein, all our space probes and computers.
*The corrected 14C date is 3700 BC.