God of the annual inundation of the Nile Hapi, creating the first snake with his own water. Snake = Water.
Isis temple, North wall of the Gate of Hadrian with a representation of the Nile god Hapi, crouched in his cave and surrounded by a serpent, Philae, Egypt : https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fichier:Hapy_Philae.JPG and http://www.temples-egypte.net/philae/hadrien/paroiNord/registreMilieu.html#B1
The Pyramids of the Cold - Section 5 • The Inclined Well Waters and the Snake Metaphors
In summary : in ancient Egyptian art, snakes are only metaphoric representations of water. Snakes = Water. Apep is a metaphor of the pressurized waters of the inclined well, and Atum is a metaphor of the small amount of that pressurized water that is ejected out of the well towards the evaporative cooling passage.
5.01 Snake representations of ancient Egyptian gods are water metaphors
One of the most recurrent appearances in ancient Egyptian religion is about snakes : they include the snake in the Hapi's cavern, the great serpent god of the Underworld Apep (Apophis) and the most important of all : Atum.
Additionally to the fact that the waters of the Nile river would exactly look alike a snake from the distance, 3 things can tell us that snakes were representations of water : 1 • Hapi (god of the flood of the Nile) in his cavern, creating a snake with water , 2 • The snakes represented with the "water ripple" hieroglyph as their body, and 3 • The boats moving on snakes
5.02 [Snake = Water] 1 • Hapi in his cavern creating the very first snake out of water :
On the left image above (from the Philae temple), Hapi (in his cavern) is depicted creating the very first snake that referred directly to the Great Pyramid. As seen in the previous post, that cavern is a representation of the King's chamber, the main water tank of the pyramid. The fact that Hapi was the god of the annual flood of the Nile, indicates that the water used in the pyramid was coming from the Nile : it wasn't rain water like a first thought it was. It also mean that the pyramid could only have been operated during the flood season.
Wall relief of Apep cut into pieces, temple of Edfu (author : Rémih, on Wikipedia). Serpent artifacts from the Louvre Museum, with the body of the snake taking the shape of the "water ripple" hieroglyph sign. Inventory number E4851. https://collections.louvre.fr/en/ark:/53355/cl010038229
5.03 [Snake = Water] 2 • The snake "water ripple" hieroglyph shaped body
The snake artifact E4851 from the Louvre Museum, is showing a unique design : the tail of the snake is nothing else than a continuous succession of "water ripple" signs, clearly highly suggesting that the snake is actually made of water.
Most probably, the "water ripple" sign and the representation of Apep with multiple cuts, as shown on the wall relief left photograph above, together, one above each over, is actually representing the same thing : the "water ripple" sign is the representation of Apep being cut, over and over again.
Apep (also Apophis) was the Great Serpent ancient Egyptian god of Chaos (isfet) that reigned over the Underworld and fought sun and creator god Ra in his solar barque (also solar barge), in endless fights, night after night. Image from Wikimedia Commons, author : Soutekh67
5.04 [Snake = Water] 3 • The boats sailing onto snakes
As seen on this representation of Seth attacking Apep, the body of Apep is actually fully supporting the barque. Apep is painted in blue, and his body is also suggesting the waves : the barque is sailing onto the snake representation of Apep.
5.05 The Great Serpent Apep of the Underworld is a metaphor of the pressurized Waters of the inclined well
I've been looking for evidence of the reality of the flooded inclined well and its water for quite a while now, until I really started to work on Apophis (Apep), the famous Snake of the Underworld.
First of all, I must admit I should have known better and find out about Apep way sooner, because I've already found out about another snake : the Dendera snake.
On the Dendera reliefs, the snake represents the way that water, coming from the inclined well of the theory, is transformed into a fog of microdroplets of liquid water. That water evaporates and cool the air.
The Dendera snake is a small snake, and it is a small amount of water coming from the inclined well. Well, guess what metaphor ancient Egyptians used to represent the inclined well water : yep, a big snake.
The small Dendera snake is a portion of the big Apep snake, so how did they represent that portion : they cut a piece of the big snake. Once again here, everything is nothing else than metaphors. There is no snake and no killing or slaying of the snake : they just represented the fact that maybe about a few hundred liters of water from the pressurized well was injected into the horizontal evaporative cooling passage.
Like for the explanation of the knives of the Dendera reliefs, the knife used here on the Great Serpent Apep is also metaphoric. The knife isn't here to kill the snake, it doesn't even really mean cut. The knife, like in Dendera, means separate.
A small quantity of water had to be separated from the rest and injected, through the Nefertem pipe to the Horus fog nozzle of the horizontal cooling passage.
The Underworld (the Duat) represents the inclined well.
The primordial waters Nu (Nun, Nunet) represent the waters of the inclined well
The big Serpent Apep (Apophis) represents the water of the inclined well pressurized by the impactor.
The solar barque represents the impactor.
The night and day cycle represents the impactor operating cycle (in and out of the well).
The overthrowing of Apep is the ejection of a small amount of pressurized water from the well towards the horizontal cooling passage, and the recovery of the impactor from the well.
Left : Great Pyramid of Khufu at Giza, entry to the the ascending passage (inclined well), viewed from the grand gallery. Top and center : Egyptian god Ra in his solar barque, by Ausir. Top right : wall relief of Apep, temple of Edfu (author : Rémih, on Wikipedia). Bottom right image from Wikimedia Commons, author : Soutekh67
5.06 The Apep myth is the representation of the inclined well operating
The key element of the evaporative cold production was the ascending passage : it was flooded and every 15 to 20 minutes, its waters were pressurized by the fall of the impactor, operated from the grand gallery. Every time it got pressurized, a small amount of its waters were ejected into the horizontal passage where the fog nozzle(s) was (were) set to create the fog of microdroplets that would evaporate and cool the air.
The Sycamore tree putting its weight upon Apep and pressurizing the waters of the inclined well.
Overthrowing of Apep in the Theban Tomb TT359, located in Deir el-Medina, part of the Theban Necropolis. It is the burial place of the ancient Egyptian workman Inherkhau, who was Foreman of the Lord of the Two Lands in the Place of Truth during the reigns of Ramesses III and Ramesses IV (Wikipedia). Image thanks to kairoinfo4u, on flickr
5.07 [Pressurization of the inclined well] 1 • The Sycamore tree is putting all its weight upon Apep
The sycamore fig tree that appears with Apep has raised some problem until I stopped thinking about it in a "static" way and completely disconnected from the cutting made by the cat on the left part of the image.
We've seen that Apep is a metaphor of the inclined well waters, and that it's cutting is a representation of the small amount of pressurized water getting out of the well.
On this image, the cut is made right in front of our eyes : it means that the well is pressurized. The presence of the sycamore fig tree has to tell us what is causing the pressurization.
1 • If we look closely, the trunk of the fig tree seems to be completely surrounded by the body of the snake, and nearly absorbed by it. The snake (the water) is all around the trunk : the sycamore tree is immersed into the water.
2 • Also, it almost looks like Apep had been punched down by the tree and he is held down on the ground like fighters would do. The weight of the trunk is constraining the body of the snake : that is the representation of the pressurization of the water.
The trunk of the sycamore is a metaphor of the impactor getting inside the inclined well (represented by the body of the snake) and pressurizing the well.
The sycamore fig tree is the impactor.
5.08 The interlocked fibers of the Sycamore wood Ficus sycomorus* ("Sycomore") and its high hit resistance : "the sycamore wood is one of the toughest that exists in the timber market, according to hits, weather and time."
Knowing that the sycamore fig tree was a representation of the impactor, we now have to ask ourselves if that impactor was made from sycamore fig wood or if this is another metaphor.
From the Majofesa website, about Ficus sycomorus* : "The sycamore wood is one of the toughest that exists in the timber market, according to hits, weather and time. It even acquired a sacred value thanks to its durability, as the Pharaohs and the most powerful men of the Ancient Egypt wanted their sarcophagi was built with this material to be preserved better and longer. It was believed that in time their mummies would reach a sacred aspect."
"The sycamore wood is heavy, moderately hard and strong. Its fiber is straight, occasionally wavy, and the grain is fine and uniform. The sycamore wood is easy to work because of its linked fibers, which allow breaking and cutting it easily. It supports very well the gluing, screwing and nailing, and the finish is usually great. Sycamore has a fine and even texture that is very similar to maple."
"The grain is interlocked."
In other words, the Sycamore would have been a perfect candidate for the purpose of the impactor : its interlocking fibers make this wood very hit resistant.
*Ficus sycomorus, not to be confused with unrelated trees. From Wikipedia : "The term sycamore spelled with an A has also been used for unrelated trees: the Great Maple, Acer pseudoplatanus, or plane trees, Platanus. The spelling "sycomore", with an O rather than an A as the second vowel is, if used, specific to Ficus sycomorus."
The pressurization of the waters of the well by the legs and paws metaphors.
Image on the left : the snake god Nehebkau (also spelled Nehebu-Kau), Spell 87 from the Book of The Dead. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nehebkau. Center : The Spearing of Apep (From the Papyrus of Nekhtu-Amen).
5.09 [Pressurization of the inclined well] 2 • The legs onto or under the snake
It is the same kind of association with the legs and the snakes : legs are also referring to the weight that is putting pressure upon snakes (upon water), whether they are onto the snake, or under the snake, like with Nehebkau (above).
It is amazing and fascinating to see that logic can be completely forgotten and different pieces of the puzzle voluntarily misplaced. This treachery obviously has the only intent to give us misleads. The positions of the legs under the snake and the Sycomore tree just next to Apep instead of onto Apep, in many representations are precisely that : misleads.
One could try to decipher the serpent walking on human legs, forever, he'll never understand the trick : the real meaning of the legs are about pressure upon something. Legs should be represented onto the serpent like on the second above image, not the opposite.
The restraining of the Great Serpent Apep is a metaphor of the containment of the pressurized waters of the inclined well of the Great Pyramid of Giza.
The restraining of Apep in the above relief from Ramesses KV19 tomb, is another representation of the containment of the inclined well pressurized waters. Once pressurized and contained into the well, a small amount of the "powered" waters can be redirected towards the evaporative cooling passage.
5.10 The restraining of Apep is the representation of the containment of the inclined well pressurized waters
We've seen that the Great Serpent Apep was a metaphor of the inclined well waters and that the fall of the impactor into the well pressurized it. The forces at play were so high that not only it was at the origin of some of the more impressive parts of the fights between Ra and Apep (the thunder noises, the rumble and trembling, etc.), but it also put the well on tremendous structural forces. That was the mission of the girdle stones : maintain the structural integrity of the well.
So, when we are looking at the restraint of the Great Serpent Apep, on the above image from Ramesses KV19 tomb, we are looking at the representation of the water that was restrained inside the well. The ropes are representations of the restraint, and the red elements in a inverted U shape, are the girdle stones : the upper girdles are actually 2 U-shaped half girdles stacked on top of each other.
5.11 Apep worship is a gradual process of dismemberment and disposal, with water references
From Wikipedia : "In an annual rite called the Banishing of Chaos, priests would build an effigy of Apep that was thought to contain all of the evil and darkness in Egypt, and burn it to protect everyone from Apep's evil for another year. The Egyptian priests had a detailed guide to fighting Apep, referred to as The Books of Overthrowing Apep (or the Book of Apophis, in Greek)."
"The chapters described a gradual process of dismemberment and disposal, and include : Spitting Upon Apep / Defiling Apep with the Left Foot / Taking a Lance to Smite Apep / Fettering Apep / Taking a Knife to Smite Apep / Putting Fire Upon Apep".
My interpretation is that the rituals practiced by the worshippers of Apep, once a year, were reproducing the operating cycles of the inclined well pressurization : it started with giving water to Apep (the "Spitting upon Apep"), then putting him under pressure, like with the sycamore metaphor on the Tomb of Inherkau TT359 ("Defiling Apep with the left foot"), then restraining him ("Fettering Apep") and finally watching him cut into tiny pieces in the form of flying sparks as a metaphor of the small amount of pressurized water ejected from the well on every cycle ("Putting fire Upon Apep").
It also probably is a reference to the high heat of the Solvay towers that would have been associated with fire. The water made cold was created to cool down the "Solvay fire".
Please note that " Taking a Lance to Smite Apep" appears twice. The first one is most probably referring to the cutting of Apep into equal size pieces, while the second one is referring to "coughing up all that Apep had swallowed".
Also, the rituals are described as "a gradual process of dismemberment and disposal".
The multiple cutting of Apep is a representation of the multiple ejection of a small amount of pressurized water from the inclined well, towards the evaporative cooling passage.
The otherthrowing of Apep. Image on the left comes from Tomb TT335 of the sculptor Nakhtamon. On the right : wall relief of Apep, temple of Edfu (author : Rémih, on Wikipedia).
5.12 The cutting of the Great Serpent Apep in equal length segments of 14.6 meters
It is clear on the above images that the goal was not to kill the Great Serpent Apep, but to cut it in equal length segments. The cut is precisely made the same way we would do ourselves today, when we want to cut a string with a knife: we make a loop and make the cut vertically, from the top down.
Also, on the right image, the sign above the serpent, is the Egyptian "water ripple" hieroglyph (U+13216, Gardiner N35).
(Wikipedia): "Apep was seen as a giant snake or serpent leading to such titles as Serpent from the Nile and Evil Dragon. Some elaborations said that he stretched 16 yards in length and had a head made of flint".
Maybe this data is genuine and the pipe that was inside the inclined well, was 16 yards in length (14.6 meters). This pipe was filled up with water and the energy from the impactor ejected that water towards the fog nozzle. If we can find out the diameter of this pipe, we would know exactly how much of this water was used at every cycle.
The ancient Egyptian Mehen "board games" showing coiled snakes cut into equal size pieces, are representations of the endless ejection of a small amount of pressurized water from the well.
5.13 The Mehen game boards are representations of the Great Serpent Apep cut into equal size pieces
This multiple times cutting of the Great Serpent Apep into equal length pieces, is exactly what is depicting the famous ancient Egyptian Mehen board game.
Wikipedia : "Mehen is a board game which was played in ancient Egypt. The game was named in reference to Mehen, a snake deity in ancient Egyptian religion."
It is interesting to see that some of these Mehen artifacts also show the head of a goose, that is once again an animal that can attack snakes.
Another interesting question, would be to know why isn't it a cat or a cat's paw that is joined to the artifact, but a goose. Is the fact that the goose is a farm animal important?
From 5 Farm Animals That Kill Snakes : "Geese may appear to be gentle and harmless, but they are among the type of farm animals that kill snakes. When the need arises, a goose loses all of its gentle nature and turns fierce. Countless times, geese have been seen overpowering small snakes by killing them. Scenarios like this often occur when the snakes try to attack the offspring of the goose. In the course of trying to protect its offspring, a goose can end up killing a snake."
5.14 The link between Mehen artifacts and Apep cutting : water distribution
• The Ballas Mehen was found covering a pot…
"Of the few boards that have good archaeological provenance, the oldest comes from the late Naqada Tomb 19 at Ballas, now in the Ashmolean Museum (Petrie & Quibell 1896: 42), and dates to the end of the fourth millennium BCE (Rothöhler 1999: 11). Found covering a pot, it was likely a votive representation of a mehen board rather than one used for play, since it was only 10.5 cm in diameter (Kendall 2007: 37), but appears in the form of other full-sized game boards."
• And another one was most certainly also a jar lid
"Another mehen game without provenance, now in a private collection, may have been a jar lid much like the Ballas game as it is only 4.5 cm in diameter and unlikely to have been used for play considering it contains 336 very small spaces (Kendall 2007: 37). It depicts a coiled serpent, with a tail and head, much like the others already discussed, but with an important distinction: four holes* were drilled on different parts of the serpent and may have been filled with a colored paste or some kind of inlay, distinguishing those spaces from the others (Kendall 2007: 37)."
*Unfortunately, no picture of this particular Mehen artifact is available ; probably the position of these 4 additional holes could be of some interest.
5.15 Were any of the Mehen artifacts designed as game boards?
What we know for sure, is that some of the Mehen board games hadn't been designed to be played with, whether because they are too small, the segments too tiny, or for both of these reasons.
The question is : were any of the Mehen artifacts designed as game boards?
On the left image, Apep is cut into pieces with a knife by the great cat Mau (the Great Cat of Heliopolis) as a representation of Sun god Ra, image from kairoinfo4u on flickr : Tomb of Inherkau TT359. Second chamber, South wall
5.16 The discontinuous high pressurized water injection towards the fog nozzle
When the impactor hits the water of the inclined well, it pressurizes it and a small amount of its water is then ejected from the well.
A small amount of the waters of the well is extracted from it, and that is the real meaning of the Great Serpent Apep being attacked by representations of Sun god Ra : nobody is trying to kill the snake, they are just cutting him into pieces, of equal lengths.
(WHF): "Apophis is sometimes depicted as a coiled serpent but, often, as dismembered, being cut into pieces, or under attack. A famous depiction along these lines comes from Spell 17 of The Egyptian Book of the Dead in which the great cat Mau kills Apophis with a knife".
(WHF): "According to the most popular creation myth, the god Atum stood on the primordial mound, amidst the swirling waters of chaos, and began the work of creation".
My comments : the ejected water is then directed towards the fog nozzle of the horizontal passage, passing through the bottom platform of the gallery, most probably with water splashes everywhere, and the cold can now be created.
From this part, we can think that the "primordial mound" would then represent the bottom platform of the grand gallery.
Tomb KV9 of Ramses V-VI. Fourth corridor, decoration on left wall: ninth division of the Book of Gates. Photograph by R Prazeres, on Wikipedia
5.17 Another representation of the pressurization of the inclined well waters in KV9
This scene is also a representation of the pressurization of the inclined well. This time, this is not the impactor that is used to put weight on the body of the snake, but the characters themselves. Probably they are also meant to represent the cutting of the snake in equal length segments.
5.18 Apep and the combination of 4 different metaphors
In my opinion, the metaphors about Apep are the most striking of all the metaphor combinations used by ancient Egyptians I know of, and it is in 4 acts :
1 • The metaphor of the pressurization of the inclined well : the sycamore tree
2 • The metaphor of the pressurized waters : the Great Serpent Apep
3 • The metaphor of the pressurized waters containment : the restraining of Apep by the ropes (see farther below).
4 • The metaphor of a portion of the pressurized water injected into the cooling passage : the Great Serpent Apep cutting and the Mehen artifacts
What all this metaphoric art is saying about the ancient Egyptian lost civilization is really admirable. I already had the utmost respect for the beauty of the Great Pyramid functioning and its marvelous impactor operating cycle, but I am starting to believe their artistic capabilities were at least equally outstanding.
The fact that their extraordinary extremely high sophisticated society was so diminished by modern people is totally beyond me.
In all honesty, we should be ashamed of ourselves.
The confirmation that the cutting of Apep in many equal length segments was actually related to the injection of pressurized water into the horizontal passage, could come from the Book of the Dead.
Please note that on this picture, there are 2 snakes, but they are really one single serpent : Apep. What is represented here is that the attack on Apep is on 2 parts, on a temporal perspective :
1 • The attack on the head of the snake is representing the coughing up of the swallowed water : that is the small amount of pressurized water ejection process, on every cycle
2 • The multiple cutting of the snake into equal length segments indicates the repetition of that sequential cycle, over and over again
5.19 The Book of the Dead serpent that swallows in one gulp part of the stream… and cough it all up
About the Book of the Dead, chapter 108 : "At about noon, the barque of Ra reaches the summit of a mountain where a serpent 50 cubits (26 meters) in length is found whose foremost 3 cubits are of silex."
"This serpent swallows in one gulp part of the stream. Set, at the front of the boat, directs his lance of fire against him, and causes him to cough up all that he had swallowed". Behind the boat, a lion headed entity runs a blade through the serpent Apep."
What we have here, is the same scene as the one with the sycamore tree : the big serpent Apep not only is allowing the barque to move (it is in the first place, the water coming from the King's chamber), but the barque is also putting its weight on him. That weight is pressurizing the water Apep : the cutting can be made into equal size portions of water, and injected in the horizontal passage.
That serpent that swallows in one gulp part of the stream and cough up back all of it, is describing the operating cycle of the pressurized water injection into the evaporative cooling passage.
I first thought that a pipe was set inside the inclined well, filled up with water between every cycle, and that same amount of water would then be ejected out of the well due to the pressurization. But maybe there was no pipe at all.
I'm still not sure what is the flint (silex) part about : is it the fog nozzle itself or the part that was set at the exit of the well ?
In this part of the Apep myth, everything is depicted but everything is also mixed up :
• The summit of the mountain is the top of the grand gallery (the upper platform)
• The barque is the impactor
• The 50 cubits length serpent is the part of the inclined well that was flooded
• The swallowing of the stream by the serpent is the filling up of the well between each cycle
• The coughing up of what the serpent had swallowed and the cutting of Apep is the ejection of the pressurized water
The sequence of events, involving snakes (water) for the production of evaporative cold, in the ancient Egyptian metaphoric style.
5.20 Every snake representation in ancient Egyptian religion is about water
One of the most recurrent appearances in ancient Egyptian religion is about snakes : they include the snake in the Hapi's cavern, the great serpent god of the Underworld Apep (Apophis) and the most important of all : Atum.
All these snake gods are metaphors of the water used to "power up" the Great Pyramid of Giza.
5.21 Apep giving birth to Atum
I know that the myth about Atum says he is a self-created god, but this part is incorrect : when Atum is represented in front of the great coiled serpent Apep, the real meaning of the scene is about his creation.
Both Apep and Atum are snakes, and both are water metaphors.
Once the waters of the well (represented by Nun, the primordial waters) get hit by the impactor (represented by the Sycomore tree putting its weight upon Apep), the well is pressurized and a small amount of water is ejected towards the horizontal passage and the fog nozzle.
That small amount of pressurized water is Atum.
5.22 The misleading puzzle pieces
What is interesting to see, is how hard it is to decipher ancient Egyptian metaphors. For example, the sycamore tree in the first image is clearly put onto the body of the snake : all the weight of the tree is supported by the snake who is totally nailed on the ground.
Of course, the paw of the cat is also reinforcing this idea of putting weight upon Apep. But this is maybe the only time where the tree is so clearly set : most of the time, the sycamore tree is not onto the snake, but just next to it (photograph on the right, above).
Of course, the fact that the sycamore tree isn't onto the snake but just next to it doesn't matter if you know the real story.
The Great Serpent Apep giving birth to Atum and Atum looking back at where he is coming from.
Atum "defeating" Apep, the ancient Egyptian great serpent god of Chaos of the Underworld, as explained by scholars. Atum is also frequently represented as a snake and his real meaning is that he is a portion of Apep. Atum is a metaphor of every buckle of the coiled snake Apep : a small amount of Apep, a portion of its water.
It is the association of dry warm air (personified in god Shu) and spat water in the form of droplets (personified in goddess Tefnut), that is producing the fog of cold in the horizontal passage of the Great Pyramid of Khufu
Center relief from the Tomb of pharaoh Ramses I. Thebes West, near 1307 BC. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apep#/media/File:Apep_1.jpg
5.23 The secret real meaning of Atum defeating Apep : the creation of Atum himself
1 • The theoretical part : "Atum is said to have ascended from chaos-waters with the appearance of a snake."
2 • The illustration : the relief depicting Atum "defeating" Apep, the ancient Egyptian great serpent god of chaos of the Underworld (above photograph), in the Tomb of pharaoh Ramses I, Thebes.
If Atum emerged from chaos waters, and is looking to Apep without doing anything to him (no knife and no blood), what is Atum doing is looking back at himself : Atum is looking at where he is coming from.
Apep is the chaos waters and Atum is made of that water.
This idea that Atum is actually made of water is reinforced by his representation in an human form with the skin painted vivid blue (above right photograph).
Also, it is said that "Atum was […] the first being to emerge from the darkness and endless watery abyss that existed before creation" . "Darkness" and "abyss", would be very appropriate talking about the inclined well, where Atum is coming from.
5.24 Atum is the representation of the small amount of pressurized water ejected from the inclined well
Among all gods, Atum really is of great importance, and some would say he is the most important of all, the first creation god as explained by every scholar.
My theory explains why he was so important, why he was seen as the first god of creation.
Just think of "cold production" when you read "creation" in academic articles and everything will come into place : Atum, as the small amount of pressurized water ejected from the waters of the inclined well, was the last step of the process, just before the creation of the cold.
Excerpt from Wikipedia's page on Atum : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atum
"Atum was a self-created deity, the first being to emerge from the darkness and endless watery abyss that existed before creation. A product of the energy and matter contained in this chaos, he created his children—the first deities, out of loneliness. He produced from his own sneeze, or in some accounts, semen, Shu, the god of air, and Tefnut, the goddess of moisture. The brother and sister, curious about the primeval waters that surrounded them, went to explore the waters and disappeared into the darkness."
Atum had in him, all the energy of the inclined well waters and all the energy of the impactor that constantly rammed into the well. This is only because the small amount of water representing Atum, was under pressure, that the fog of microdroplets could have been created ; hence the reference to the fact that Atum created Shu and Tefnut from his own sneeze or his own semen.
And all that vocabulary, about energy, creation, liquids under pressure and water is present in every description of Atum we can find. The only reason why it doesn't matter that Atum created Shu and Tefnut from his own sneeze or his own semen, is because it is only a metaphor referring to the spray of a liquid under high pressure.
Atum represented in an human form (left) and as a snake in snake coffin artifacts from the Brooklyn Museum : Snake Coffin Accession Number 36.624 (center) and Snake Coffin (Atum) Accession Number 16.600 (right).
5.25 Atum ascending from the chaos waters
"In the Book of the Dead, which was still current in the Graeco-Roman period, the sun god Atum is said to have ascended from chaos-waters with the appearance of a snake, the animal renewing itself every morning."
"Early myths state that Atum created the god Shu and goddess Tefnut by spitting them out of his mouth.[…] Other myths state Atum created by masturbation."
Of course, the "chaos waters" are directly referring to the pressurized waters, after they have been hit (rammed) by the fall of the impactor.
The constant reference to the day cycle is a little more tricky to understand : the cycle is not about the Sun, but about the impactor getting in and out of the well. The real cycle is about the operating of the impactor. When it got into the well, it was like going into the night and when it got back into the Grand Gallery, it was like going back into the day, into light (whether it was light from the Sun or from lamps).
5.26 Atum, the first creation god, father of Shu and Tefnut, was also represented as a snake
Atum was the first creation god of ancient Egypt and the father of Shu (the god of dry and warm air) and Tefnut (the goddess of spat water and humidity).
During the Amarna period, if Akhenaten and Nefertiti represented themselves precisely in these two particular deities while all the other traditional gods were banished, it is because they wanted to be associated with the creation of the most magical part of the Solvay process : its evaporative cooling.
Mehen board game photographed by ©Rowan Millar, and posted on flickr : https://www.flickr.com/photos/126337530@N04/28294095688
5.27 Atum in front of the coiled serpent Apep : Apep has already been cut multiple times
As we can see on the above image, the character "defeating" Apep is Atum.
This scene is very important because it shows the continuity between these two characters : Atum is actually coming from Apep : Atum is the small amount of pressurized water ejected out of the inclined well by the fall of the impactor.
The first thing to note on the scene where Atum stands in front of Apep, is that Atum doesn't have any knife : Atum is not killing or cutting the snake. Actually, Apep is already cut. That is the meaning of the coils of the serpent : each buckle represent a cycle of water pressurization and ejection, and Atum is a representation of each of these buckles.
The Mehen artifacts, showing a snake that has been cut multiple times in equal size portions, are exactly describing that part of the real explanation of the myth about Apep and Atum.
Right : Nefertem emblems from the Louvre Museum : inventory number N 5118 © Musée du Louvre / Christian Décamps : https://collections.louvre.fr/ark:/53355/cl010008518 and ME299 © Musée du Louvre : https://collections.louvre.fr/ark:/53355/cl010337234
5.28 Atum passing through Nefertem : the "life force of the creator god Atum transmitted through Nefertem" reference
What I'm saying is that Atum was a representation of the pressurized water ejected from the inclined well, and that it was transformed on the lower platform of the grand gallery into a fog of microdroplets of liquid water inside the horizontal passage. For that to happen, a pipe had to be set on that platform, as well as a fog nozzle.
I'm also saying that these two pieces of hardware were represented into Nefertem's emblems : a pipe and a lotus flower. The lotus blossom being the fog nozzle.
In other words, we can say that Atum (the water) was passing through Nefertem (the hardware).
Amazingly, this idea of Atum passing through Nefertem is already well known :
Excerpt from Michael J. Masley : "Meeks points out that the relationship between the sun and the lotus-Nefertem is well attested in the Pyramid Texts but the birth of the sun-god in the lotus blossom is known only after the Amarna period. Pyramid Texts Spell 249 (Pyr. § 266a): xa (wnjs)| m nfr-tm m zSSn r Srt ra “Unis will appear as Nefertem, as the lotus at the sun-god’s nose” corresponds to the image of the Egyptian deities giving life (anx) to the nose of the king and thus the life-force of the creator god Atum is transmitted to the sun-god Re through Nefertem. As such, Nefertem is a mediator that connects the two great gods."
I've highlighted in bold the important parts of the above text that allows us to understand the fine relation that exists between Nefertem and Atum : they are both connected to the cold production but each one is a very particular aspect of it.
We need to keep in mind that all the efforts on the evaporative cooling, were for one reason only : the chemical "magical" manufacturing of sodium carbonate, the natron that would be used for the mummification of the pharaoh ; hence the reference to the "life-force" and Sun god Re.
Diagram of the Great Pyramid of Giza in operation.
Very quick abstract of the study
Ancient Egyptian pharaohs used chemistry and physics to legitimate themselves as kings of Egypt, and they forged an entire religion for that matter : gods were self-glorification metaphors of their scientific accomplishments. The end game of this technological program was the Great Pyramid of Giza where evaporative cooling was engineered in the known part of the pyramid, using the power of water, most probably as suggested by the strong ammonia smell in the Red Pyramid, to cool down chemical manufacturing of sodium carbonate and sodium bicarbonate. At that time, sodium carbonate was called natron, and it was the salt used for the mummification of the pharaohs.
Ancient Egyptians were the first civilization to master a Solvay-like process for sodium carbonate manufacturing, long before it got reinvented in the 1800's in Europe. The key elements of that process is the temperature control of the chemical reactions (the cooling), and the dome shaped plate necessary for the counterflow chemical reactions to occur in an efficient way, and that plate is precisely what is the disc of Sabu.
If mastering the Solvay-process was important, it actually looks like the cold was the most magical phenomenon worshiped by ancient Egyptians, as suggested by Akhenaten and Nefertiti who represented themselves as Shu and Tefnut, the deities that combined together were creating the evaporative cold (Shu = dry warm air, and Tefnut = spat water).
Also, the very first pyramid complex, the Step Pyramid of Djoser, was called "the refreshment of the Gods".