THE EGYPTIAN GOD
Dreamed 1991/12/21, on the dark solstice, by Chris Wayan
Before we came, it almost looked natural, a small cinder-cone perhaps--a dusty lump above the flat dry fields. But our archeological team dug, on faith and sonar. Just an exploratory notch, through the top and down one face. Now monstrous walls and fluted columns loom from six thousand years of dust. Unmistakably Egyptian--but too old, and a thousand miles from Egypt. New carvings and glyphs emerge every day, but it's immense--digging it all out will take God knows how long.
We first began to realize just what a find it was when we cut into the very summit, and sliced into a huge stern face! We'd been casual, that first meter down, for from the sediment and topography, we were certain we had meters of mud to clear away. We never imagined a statue could be SO tall as to reach to the summit of the mound.
A shame to lose its nose, but who could have guessed?
Well, we should have. We were thinking too small.
The villagers don't like it. Not sacrilege exactly; they don't worship the old gods. But as the general store-owner put it:
"You anthros dig up Old Ones without even asking us. You think we don't mind, as long as you don't dig up our fields. But you'll fly away; we have to live with him. You be careful with that old god, he's a jealous one. Plenty of other sites."
But we didn't listen. We didn't leave the God alone. No, we had to chop his nose off.
So the God wakes.
He's Patrick Stewart, who plays Captain Jean-Luc Picard on Star Trek. He looks the part of an Egyptian Pharaoh or God, but he's blurred his roles; he plays it too much like Picard! A personality that--in a man--is merely a bit formal, insistent on his rank, is different in a God. In a God, it's monstrous. For the rank of a God is absolute--he can do just what he likes to any mortal, no matter what the consequences. We'll always be disrespectful, in his eyes.
And we cut his nose off!
Worse. We've cracked the tomb where the God sleeps. An inky echoing vault, pyramid-shaped, in the mound's core. And we barge into his bedroom with electronic gear and lights. The God Picard is weak, still half asleep; he doesn't want to be seen or caught. He hides, a vapor in the corners where the dark slinks, biding its time. My mind seems to be with him, witnessing it all like a fly on the wall. But I don't tell anyone what I see. I can't say a God's alive and I'm in his mind.
Late one night, only two archeological insomniacs are left up, examining the glyphs on the wall, in the pools of light. Most of our equipment is beyond their preoccupied horizons...
The God Picard starts snooping around their gear. So much to learn about energy and power. Humans have developed amazing tools, strong enough to endanger his return to dominance--but if he can master them, they could enhance his godhood beyond anything he could do in the old days. And their electronic systems feel so vulnerable to a little psychic tampering--it's almost as if no one has powers anymore, or even believes in such things. Vast energies and no warding spells at all!
A world ripe for blackmail.
The God Picard studies a tiny device that shines a light when you push a disk of false jade. The God's not familiar with the customs and conventions encrusting machines; he lacks the concept "switch" and doesn't know how to turn it off! So the god materializes, uneasily, and puts his hand over the light to snuff it, like a candle. God's hand glows, faintly. The lead archeologist, a middle-aged man, a genius whose aura the God can feel even from here, looks up--alert. Clumsy with the unfamiliar tool, the God lets a gleam slip out. And the archeologist sees!
He calls to his friend and slowly they disentangle themselves from their gear and notebooks, and come to investigate.
The God Picard backs off. He fears this man... though he won't need to for long.
In the end, even archeologists must sleep. Lights out. The God's in the dark. He finds a tape recorder and a camera and lights and ... feasts. On all the luscious implications of technology.
I enter the tomb in the morning... and the floodlamps rear up, like glowing cobras... All the equipment comes alive. Oh God, the drills! I turn and run, screaming. Warning.
My expedition-mates want to fight. I argue against it. "Fight this God from a distance, where you can stay anonymous! Don't let him single you out for attention, that's fatal!" I'm terrified of the new amplified God.
The God Picard decides to go for a stroll. From the tomb, up the shaft and out the dig. But not as a breath of a ghost of a wind. He's a God again, and he shapes himself as a God. Twelve feet tall.
I'm in him now, feeling his pleasure as he climbs out of his grave. What a beautiful day to come alive!
On the back side of the mound, he encounters three archeological grad students. Women! Three votive offerings--the new priests remember what I like. Excellent!
He grabs one in each huge hand. The third he ignores, but she can't run--she stands paralyzed by his dreamlike calm. He can't be real! The God shapes himself a phallus far out of scale even for a twelve-foot body: three or four times human. I feel his satisfaction as he jams the monstrous cock into one student, then the other. It's not terribly sensual, for him--almost absent-minded rape. Just the pleasant spurt of dominance, after eons alone in the dark. It's good to be up again.
They are bleeding, intestines ripped, spitting up blood. Dying. No matter. What greater blessing can they have than to die united with God? He covers the two raped and dying women with a clear form of ectoplasm, to freeze their appearances forever--they'll mummify inside, but their outer shell will last, for decoration around the tomb, and occasional sex play. Such pretty dolls! That's what mortal women are for.
He leaves the third woman. When he wants more, he'll get more.
He doesn't realize how she saw it, and if he did, he wouldn't care. What can one mortal do?
Next day, the tape of her haunted face whispering what she saw is on every network--variously censored in most countries, but...
Her warning, and mine, take a couple of days to percolate through the shifting sands at the UN. It takes a few days more for all the nations of the world to agree that they must fight this God--and from a distance, leaving him no face to attack. Before he notices nuclear physics, and learns that!
We can't live with him. He'll never acknowledge us. I saw through his eyes, lived through his rape. He's eager to learn about our new toys, but we were, and are, and will always be, just another kind of toy.
Individually, we're as mortal as ever, but as a species, we've grown up. We created this alpha-male God at the dawn of civilization, and now we'll destroy him.
If we unite.
And now, after centuries of war, we will unite. He's seen to that.
SEVEN YEARS LATER....
I'm sitting the waiting room at the Haight Free Clinic in San Francisco, waiting for an allergy shot. I idly turn the page of a movie magazine, and read about the film Prince of Egypt. Patrick Stewart plays the Pharaoh! His role has exactly the kind of arrogant cruelty as in my dream, that I feared was in ME...
Only my dream had Patrick Stewart playing an arrogant Egyptian living-god back in 1991! I was puzzled at the time why I chose him.
My dreams aren't just psychic--they like a joke. A delayed-fuse joke. But isn't seven years pushing it?
Though with Pharaohs, I guess a seven-year precognitive dream is just right, isn't it? In the Biblical tale of Joseph and the Coat of Many Colors, the Pharaoh's predictive dream had 7 thin cows eating 7 fat ones--forecasting 7 bumper years, then 7 of famine. Joseph's dream-interpretation causes the king to store food and save his people.
And three thousand years later, Euro-American psychology is still claiming dreams are personal phenomena having no predictive powers--or social conscience, or public uses, either.
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