Most of the days in Egypt started as early as 3:00 am and the sixth day was no different. The reason for this was to be able to get to the sites we were visiting as early as possible. This allowed for the most privacy and helped to avoid the crowds that came later in the day. For me, this was totally worth the early wake up calls. On this day our early departure was for a visit to the Temple of Isis known as the Philae Temple. Like the Kalabsha Temple, the Philae Temple was moved from its original location and reconstructed on higher ground, which is almost impossible to believe when you see how huge it is. The entire complex was moved from Philae Island, to its new location on Agilkia Island, following the building of the Aswan High Dam and the flooding of Lake Nasser.
The Temple of Isis will always have a special place in my heart, because it was such a mystical site and experience. Like the day before, we were taken out to the Temple by ferry. It was so early that it was dark outside when we arrived, but you could see the outline of the massive structure looming up out of the dim. We were each given an electric tealight. We had all agreed to approach this Temple in silence so we could really take it in, and as we filed up the hill from the banks of the lake with our lights it was just a beautiful sight to see. There was something so holy and sacred about this place. We walked quietly up to the first pylon and the central doorway and past the remains of two giant granite lions on either side. We silently passed through the main courtyard and into the inner temple and finally all the way back to the sanctuary or “House of Isis.” As we circled around the granite base or altar in the heart of the sanctuary, I was thinking of how completely different this felt to me than the visit to Kalabsha the day before. The energy of this temple felt so sacred and I couldn’t help but think of all of the priests and pilgrims that must have walked this same route before. The Temple of Isis filled me with a reverence that was so peaceful and awe-inspiring. I was thinking that THIS was how I “remembered” Egypt. The respect and veneration that we all felt inspired to give by our silent and candle-lit walk through the Temple just felt like it gave the place and the Goddess the honor and appreciation that it and she so much deserved. It is hard to describe the feelings, emotion and energy of ancient Egypt when it finally hits you. As we stood in this hallowed space, it was as if the energy just enveloped me and it was not hard to imagine Isis herself wrapping me in her arms and welcoming me into her heart. Many were brought to tears and I could tell that everyone felt the love here as much as I did. I did not cry like I had the day before at Kalabsha. I was too overjoyed; Egypt was still alive! It was a sublime moment for me. I could feel the energetic “download” that I have read about so many people experiencing while they are in various locations around Egypt. This was certainly one of those places for me and I don’t think I quit smiling the entire rest of the day.
Eventually, we left the inside of the temple to go sit on the outer walls around it, overlooking the lake. We had the privilege of watching the sunrise there and listened to all of the birds and animals coming awake around us. It was really wonderful. There were many other structures and old ruins to see around the complex and we spent some additional time exploring them before we left.
The rest of the day was spent on the boat sailing along the Nile. These moments on the Dahabeya in between visiting the historical sites were some of my favorite. It was so incredibly relaxing and peaceful to just sit out on the deck and watch the Nile slip by. The scenery was so picturesque and unlike other parts of the world where I had been before. As you watch the local people out on the banks with their farm animals and see the other boats and feluccas go by, it is so easy to fall back in time and envision it the way that it must have been for so long. We did stop along the banks at one point to wander along through the remains of some burial sites there. It was a smaller site and I don’t remember the name, but the location was beautiful, and it was lovely to have the time to take it all in.
The Tarot card that represents this day for me is the High Priestess card. In the Nefertari’s Tarot deck, Isis is depicted in the card wearing a vulture and double crown headdress, while in the Rider-Waite Tarot, the High Priestess wears the three-fold moon or crown of Isis. Both decks link this card to her and since this day was mostly spent at her temple in Philae, it seems like the perfect choice. The High Priestess is often associated with the Oracle of Delphi or other prophets and soothsayers. Therefore, it tends to represent our own psychic powers, intuition and subconscious mind. The two columns behind her represent the balance of dark and light within us, similar to the Yin and Yang principles. This is one of strongest female archetypes in the deck and it implies that it is wise to trust your own feelings, perceptions and empathic abilities. It is a very mysterious and spiritual card, and this was how I felt about my visit to Philae Temple. I love the image of Isis holding out the two bowls in the Nefetari card. When you enter the Temple of Isis, you cannot help but feel like a priest or priestess yourself, coming to give her your own offerings of love.
* Most of the pictures of me that are posted here and throughout my website were taken by my good friend and very talented photographer, Amy Auset Rohn. She captured these special moments of my trip to Egypt in the most non-intrusive and beautiful of ways. You can find more of her work and learn more about her by following this link. www.ausetimages.com/
Rev. Kennedy Turner is the owner of The Cat's Meow, Tarot and Talismans, LLC in Louisville, Ky. She is a Psychic Medium, Professional Intuitive Tarot Card Reader, and Certified Healing Reiki Practitioner. She also designs and blesses jewelry for use as protective personal talismans and charms, tailored to meet your individual needs.