El Mesala Hotel
West Bank, Luxor ~ Egypt
“Do you have a strong heart?” the boy asked, beating his chest with one small brown fist.
“Yes, I believe so…”
“Then stand up!”
“Stand on camel!”
The camel, whose name happened to be Bob Marley, knelt in the sand and chewed nonchalantly while I got my feet beneath me and rose carefully in the carpet-like saddle (that decade of ballet training never ceases to come in handy!).
Somehow we’d gotten roped into a bizarre (costumed) photo shoot by a Giza Pyramid guard and his young assistant. Five minutes after my entirely unsolicited camel circus moment, the boy stuck his hand out and said vehemently, “Give me money!” This prompted a bit of a schoolmarm moment, as I told him the merits of “please” and “thank you” before complying. In general the boys that worked the Giza Plateau- some as young as 7 years old- seemed heart-achingly hardened and cynical. They appeared to possess the same money-fixated machinery as their adult counterparts, but without any of the carefully cultivated oil to grease the wheels (actually in a way their irritable demands for baksheesh, or tips, were refreshingly honest and straightforward). I like to think this was a persona they had developed for work and in their other time they still enjoyed the effervescence of youth, such as the teenage boy we passed in the street riding a donkey so miniature his bare feet nearly dragged the ground; he greeted us cheerfully as we entered the supermarket, and when we came out he pointed to the donkey with a wide grin and quipped, “Do you want a taxi?” (To appreciate the full scale of his wit you need to know that he’d seen a couple of genuine taxi drivers solicit us for fares moments before.) He giggled delightedly when we laughed.
Our hotel in Giza was the funky albeit historically-rich Sphinx Guest House, which we’d chosen for its amazing location directly across from the Pyramids. Flying in at 3am, seeing a disturbing 10 car pile-up on the Cairo freeway, fielding sales pitches for guided tours from our hotel’s driver, and the shower nozzle literally snapping off in my hand when I attempted to wash off the 24 hours of travel grime, were among the things that made Egypt one of our rougher entries into a country and culture. When we finally tumbled into bed at 5am, we’d slept for a mere few hours when someone knocked at the door to inquire about breakfast. Once awake however, my equestrian mind homed in on the unmistakable sound of hoof beats outside, a lot of them. Had we awoken in Victorian times? I pulled back the curtains to see the street below positively swarming with horses, camels, donkeys, and carriages (integral pieces of the tourist trade at the Giza Plateau, as we would soon learn). Even more surreal than this was the scene that loomed up behind the low-slung utilitarian mosque across the street, looking more like a Hollywood backdrop than reality: the iconic Sphinx, staring unblinkingly back at me, with the Giza Pyramids looming behind like alien sentries. Lack of sleep suddenly seemed a paltry concern.
While we had breakfast in his apartment, our gracious host, Gouda, told us proudly that his family home had stood on this spot for the past two hundred years and that Shirley MacLaine was among the celebrities who had been there (I could easily believe she had visited to take in the view, but if she’d actually stayed in the Spartan accommodations where half the light bulbs were burnt out and one had to chase down the non-English speaking maid to mime “toilet paper,” I had to give the lady some serious credit).
That day we took our first Egyptian taxi and got a taste of the way they drive here, which makes the Athenians look conservative and the notorious Parisians downright sedate! Our driver was the most memorable so far: wiry-framed, exuberant old Ali, who proudly showed us his notebook filled with messages from past passengers in languages spanning the globe and requested we leave our own.
On our way into Cairo there was suddenly a loud BANG as one of the tires gave out and we trundled to the side of the road. “No problem! No problem!” Ali exclaimed. He leapt spryly from the car to retrieve the spare tire from the trunk, revealing a tray of aish baladi (similar to pita bread) that he placed unconcernedly in the filthy street with traffic racing past inches away. Marlon offered to help, but Ali insisted on us waiting in the shade, as it happens next to a wall spray-painted in English with, “If you see knights, run like hell!” (???) Within five minutes we were back on the road, with the aish baladi - presumably to be sold or consumed- back inside the trunk along with the blown tire.
The next morning we walked across the street to meet Michael Jackson and Shakira, the camels who would take us to the Great Pyramid. It is my feeling that camels are to Egypt and the Middle East what alpacas are to the Andes, and sheep to the UK: sacred fifth dimensional guardians of the spiritual sites. Regrettably, of all of these camels are probably treated with the least dignity, though they also manage to maintain and exude the most dignity. Their reputation for being bad-tempered hardly seems fair, as their natural state is one of meditative awareness and communion with the land (their ponderous, rolling gate itself is reminiscent of the crests and valleys of sand dunes and speaks of conscious surrender to the ebbs and flows of life). If you were constantly being jerked out of your cosmic contemplations for trivial matters you’d be spitting with contempt too!
With us on our camel trek was our hotel’s soft-spoken resident Giza guide, Achmed, and a pre-adolescent boy, both on horseback. As initially I was horrified to see us strung together by rope and led like kids on a pony ride, I was relieved when my request to let us “drive” was granted, though it seemed against their usual protocol. (The boy kept screaming “Achmed!” in a belligerent tone followed by a stream of Arabic, seemingly with an unnecessary extra emphasis on the loogey-hocking sounding “Ach”, beyond the native pronunciation… Apparently the camels weren’t the only ones spitting with rage!)
After purchasing the additional ticket necessary to enter the Great Pyramid, we left Achmed and the camels at the base of the colossus and climbed to the entrance- actually a rather sacrilegious opening created by a treasure hunter, some ways below and to the right of the original entrance. A short ways in we came to what is called the Ascending Corridor, where one is required to walk at a full crouch for 118 feet on a steep incline. To the stern consternation of my inner Lara Croft, on my first attempt I felt an overwhelming suffocation and panic and had to return to the airier first tunnel. With my inner vision I clearly saw above me the laser-straight (with plenty of head room I might add) original corridor used as the entrance in ancient times, and melted into sleep-deprivation-fueled tears. Even beyond disliking the claustrophobia-inducing aspect of this false entrance, I was certain the original had- like the rest of the pyramid- been designed with divine precision and had vibrational significance in regard to preparing the initiate for entry into the chambers within. Being forced to go in this way was not only annoying but abominable!
Marlon, with his usual grounded astuteness, comforted me and suggested I take some flower essences. Over the course of the last year and a half we had learned that when I had these uncharacteristic panic attacks, it was at its core about my brother’s death, and feeling that I had no control. As soon as I got centered I could feel Adrien hovering next to me, feeding me images from the Indiana Jones movies we had loved to the point of memorization. This is who you are. Snakes or no snakes.
The Great Pyramid, after all, is a temple of Initiation- perhaps overcoming this fear was mine.
My second time in the Ascending Corridor, I bent double and charged ahead, keeping my eyes focused on where my feet were stepping and my mind on Marlon’s voice as he talked about our pop star camels to keep me occupied. When we emerged into the long, cathedral-like Great Gallery, it was all worth it. We craned our necks to admire the 28 foot high corbelled ceiling as we continued to ascend to the top, where the cherry on this sacred sundae awaited us, the so-called “King’s Chamber.”
As timing would have it, we were alone in the rectangular room, which had an undeniable extraterrestrial quality. The vibrations in the space were unlike anything I’d ever felt before (in this lifetime)… It was rather like being inside a crystal singing bowl that’s been struck once, concisely, so it rings out a long continuous note. I was moved to tears again, this time for an entirely different reason. As a group of Europeans joined us in the chamber and began vocalizing spontaneous Oms and Ahs (“Amazing reverb in here,” my musician companion noted), I sat down to journal about the information coming through.
Each of the pyramids at Giza holds a specific tone or frequency, as does each chamber within them. Their intention was for self-realization, personal and collective evolution, and healing (different than we generally conceive healing today- it was more on the spiritual and emotional levels, as people were so highly aware they could detect and address imbalances long before they manifested in the physical being). This was done with tone, both audible and beyond the range of physical hearing, on a musical scale vastly broader and more intricate than what we know today. (This is also how the pyramids were built.) Any tone could be used in any chamber or pyramid, however it would be influenced by the primary tone of both the chamber and pyramid itself, like playing the same notes in different keys on a musical instrument. This allowed for an almost infinite amount of tonal possibilities, applicable to an infinite amount of states and scenarios. The tools used for the toning were primarily vocal, and also included things similar to musical instruments, crystals that practitioners could literally make “sing”, and other advanced esoteric devices. The alleged “sarcophagus” in the King’s Chamber isn’t a casket at all but a place where recipients/initiates would lay to receive tonal alignment (also functioned as an altar as necessary). The chambers could additionally be used for collective purposes- groups of the initiated would gather in ceremony and celebration and their intention would be magnified by the pyramid and focused out of its tip for the benefit of the sky, the land, the water, or specific people or events. (Communication with extraterrestrials and reception of celestial energies was also possible this way.)
No sooner had I recorded this than a pyramid custodian was beckoning to us with a furtive expression. The chamber was once again ours alone, and he invited us to take turns lying in the “sarcophagus” while he hummed quietly so we could experience the way the room amplified the sound and focused it directly into the rectangular stone basin in a wash of tangible sensation. (I prayed for divine intervention for our highest good, as though his intentions were positive, I don’t think he was an experienced practitioner.) Afterwards, of course, he wanted baksheesh- but the way he had singled us out and validated the information I had just received was simply staggering. We practically floated back down the Ascending Corridor and out into the hazy midday Cairo heat.
Someday the wide-held beliefs about when, how and for what purpose the pyramids at Giza were built will be understood to be as ludicrous as the idea that the world is flat. No mummified remains have ever been found in these pyramids (except for extraterrestrial ones, if you believe some sources). They contain no hieroglyphics, no relief carvings of deities, nothing at all to connect them to the other tombs and temples from ancient Egypt. Why the Egyptian government and scientific community at large continues to insist they are tombs is frankly laughable- and no doubt convenient. (Rumor has it that the Atlantean Records renowned psychic Edgar Cayce predicted were concealed beneath the paw of the Sphinx were actually found in 2013, but hushed up due to the huge historical ramifications… No worries. The truth will always out.)
Our experiences in Egypt have been so dense, so multi-layered, so exquisite, so downright contradictory, that it took me days to even begin writing this first Log. It has been one of my most difficult to collect my thoughts about, and ironically, also the longest. (Flopping into bed at the end of each day in utter and complete exhaustion with little to no time for writing was also a factor.) Much has been left out for the moment.
Vibrational alchemist, writer, artistic mystic, pack mama and spiritual adventurer living in The Goodland - Goleta, CA. Creator of Lioness Energetics.
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