The Ankh

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The Ankh

Postby Draco Magnus » Fri Feb 10, 2006 1:34 pm


I've recently become very interested in learning more about the symbol of the ankh.
Are there any exploratory essays/studies that I can be directed towards? Right now my understanding is basic.

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Postby Jim Eshelman » Fri Feb 10, 2006 4:45 pm

The main thing is that is the Egyptian hieroglyphic meaning "life" - but you knew that. :)

Probably anything beyond that is someone's extrapolation or add-on after the fact. For example, in some Western Mystery Tradition tantric-like traditions, the Ankh is seen as the union of an Omega as a womb (or squatting woman) and an Iota (or possibly Tav) as the phallus.

Even the traditional observation that an Ankh is in the shape of an old sandal strap is likely an after-the-fact observation, apparently no older than Sir Gerald Gardiner. (However, the Egyptian name for the sandal strap is a very similar word.) In modern times it is taken to mean that the common power inherent in the Egyptian gods (each of whom is routinely shown as bearing the Ankh) is "to go."

It is also hard to ignore the similarity of the Ankh to the astrological glyph for Venus, though I can't at all substantiate any actual derivation for either. Similarly, the Egyptian hieroglyph for death, Khopet, is essentially the Mars glyph.

As a symbol of emerging life, it is often thought to be a symbol of sunrise in particular - the loop showing the Sun rising above the horizon of the horizontal.

Bottom-line, it means Life.

Google, with search terms ankh symbolism, is fruitful.
Love is the law, love under will.
Yours in L.V.X.,
Jim Eshelman
"Success is thy proof: argue not; convert not; talk not overmuch!" - CCXX 3:42
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