Ritual Postures, Ritual body Postures, Ancient Ritual Postures

Karnak Temple Sekhmet Posture

by Leslie Zehr

On the occasion of the May 20th eclipse we chose to do the Sekhmet posture. The posture comes from the Sekhmet statue in a very secluded chapel at Karnak Temple in Luxor, Egypt.  The statue is life size and quite majestic. It shows Sekhmet standing left foot forward in the traditional ‘martial arts’ stance. She is holding a flower with her left hand at her root chakra which opens just beneath her heart chakra. In her right hand she is holding an ankh pointing down to the ground at a 45° angle.

The reason we chose this statue is because we had just been to Luxor to visit her in person. I lead sacred journeys here in Egypt. We had just returned from Luxor on our ‘Journey to the Sacred Feminine’. My main work is with the dual serpent goddess energy of the Hathor-Sekhmet archetype. To facilitate the activation process we visited Hathor at Dendera Temple and Sekhmet at her chapel in the Karnak Temple.

This was the first time I visited Sekhmet in this chapel at Karnak. Most of my work has been done in Hathor’s Temple at Dendera so this was a new experience for me as well. When I approached her I was struck by her beauty. I took many pictures just of her face because it was SO peaceful and serine.

Sekhmet is commonly known as the warrior goddess. Warriors would pray to her before battle. But she only became known in that way after the shift to the solar-god religions (during the Age of Aries). Before the shift she was one of the balancing aspects of the Divine Feminine. She and Hathor made up the two serpents of the Caduceus/Kundalini. It was after the Fall, the shift, when people began worshiping the Sun god Ra and separation set in. The feminine was forgotten and humanities focus turned to manifestation (materialism), the ego (Sun) and power over others/control (rather than empowerment through the Divine).

In the beginning the serpent goddess Hathor-Sekhmet was known as the ‘attractive-aggressive’ goddess. Creating a balance of ‘feminine power’, empowerment. Those are the energies we are accessing in our work. Although new temples have been built over the pre-‘his-story’ temples, the energies can still be felt and tuned into. In very ancient times before the two serpents were separated Sekhmet represented the warrior, on the subtle level. She was the healer, fighting disease and imbalance, rather than other humans.

While in the chapel I stood next to her and listened to what she had to say. I have done a lot of intuiting with plants. I am able to hear the plant Devas, which is how I created the Al-chemia Remedies here in Egypt back in the year 2000. This was the first time I have done this with a statue or sacred object. It happened spontaneously and the feeling was the same as with plant Devas, so it was very familiar.

She explained that this posture is about transmuting the primordial energy to a higher frequency. We move it from the root chakra, through the sacral (womb) and allow it to blossom in the heart. Then it continues to move out from the heart through the arms. Any healer uses this process of moving the energy from the heart chakra out through the arms when they do ‘hands-on’ healing. She uses the ankh in her right hand to collect the energy and discharge it back to the earth.

All of this is fairly obvious from looking at the statue. But what I also understood in this encounter is that we as women are the vessel for transmutation. Because we have a sacred space within our bodies, the womb, we can channel this primordial energy, transmute it to love/compassion collect it and use it for healing. In this case it looks as though she is healing the earth by discharging this energy down to the ground but I also think that concept could be expanded to the earthly realm, not just the physical earth/ground.

I had also prepared an elixir, which is a blend of floral water, essential oils and Al-chemia Remedies for the trip, specifically for Sekhmet. I thought that I had prepared it for the women on the journey, to enhance our experience and our receptivity at each site. But after we were there I realized it I had brought it for her. We sprayed the room and she began to glow, a beautiful sight. When we left the chapel I knew that this was the posture that we needed to do on May 20th. We needed to share this experience with others and the way to do that was through the postures gathering.

We gathered on May 20th at 8:00pm Cairo time. This was before the actual eclipse, the Sun/Moon conjunction. The conjunction would happen here at 1:47am so that was not a viable time to gather.  We were 9 women all together; men were invited but did not show up. I gave a bit of background about ecstatic trance posture and referred them to Dr. Goodman’s work. I explained that I didn’t want to say anything about the posture I just wanted them to have their own personal experience and that we would talk and process afterward.

We again used the elixir that I had prepared for Sekhmet.  Six of the women had been on the journey to Luxor and three had not. It was a lovely experience. Most women felt they were in a vortex, many, including myself had trouble standing up. I teach Sacred Dance, which is almost like a martial art for women, so I am very aware of my posture. It is important to be well centered went the energy starts coming through. As well as having trouble standing up, from the spinning I also realized something very important. I was standing with my weight evenly distributed on both feet. Which ‘should’ be the correct position, but it was not. It was only when I pushed my hips forward that I could maintain this posture. Because this posture is about moving forward, not standing still. Something you cannot see from the stature but feel when you try to do the posture.

Most women saw Sekhmet. Some saw her and then turned into her. One saw her in front of her and then she put her hands on the participants shoulders. Another had a real sense of having her standing beside her, and still feels that presence. Another saw all of us as clones of her and I will include her complete experience below as it is quite profound.

Two women had a disturbing feeling of suffocating. Later realizing that the energy got to be overwhelming and also that they were probably having a clearing in the throat chakra. One woman felt it in her heart ‘…I felt so blessed in my heart felt it pop open”. Many women felt pulsations and opening in their chakras, specifically heart third eye and throat

There were common themes of fire, purification and great respect. One woman saw a white light over her crown and asked it to come into her body and purify every cell. I saw her as a fire burning in the form of the statue. Then I saw electricity coming off of her.  Two women heard cat sounds.
Some felt very heavy and attached to the earth while others were flying. One felt herself growing, getting larger. Many found it so pleasant they didn’t want to come back after the experience was over.  Some remained a bit spacey, but everyone felt good and very relaxed.

One woman had a very complete and profound vision so I will include it in its entirety here. “I saw us all as cloned Sekhmets. A legion of female warriors. Men surrounding the circle like a Native American sacred dance, making a war cry, calling for battle. The sound was coming from the throat chakra directly. I could see the sound like flames. The higher frequency of fire was there to burn out the lower frequency of fire. I saw red-green-blue colors corresponding to the root-heart-throat chakra. Sekhmet used the ankh to controlling lower fires”.

During our processing we also discussed the relevance of this posture to the eclipse. Generally we are working with the Hathor-Sekhmet duality of the serpent goddess so it seemed very fitting to do this during the eclipse where the sun and moon are conjoined  and the lunar aspect is obscuring the solar, except for a ring of fire. For us the Moon, Jupiter, Mercury and Lilith were all still in the sign of Taurus (Hathor) at the time of the gathering. This added more power to that Hathor-Sekhmet duality.

This is a very important posture for women who are trying to connect to the Divine Feminine to experience. It is now almost a week since we did the posture and many of the women present, including myself, continue to have illumination about this activation.

Leslie Zehr is the author of ‘The Alchemy of Dance: Sacred Dance as a Path to the Universal Dancer‘, Director of The Centre for Sacred Arts in Cairo, Egypt, creator of the Al-chemia Remedies and professor at the International Metaphysical University. Her main work is the Universal Dancer through which she teaches Sacred Dance and esoteric wisdom as well as empowering women by reconnecting them to the Divine Feminine within.

Copyright © 2012 by Leslie Zehr