The magical word of Heka could mean several meanings to many people. Each of these meanings also signifies many faces of complex Egyptian magic and the occult.
Heka seems to be the divine gift of the sun god Re in an honor to the humankind. It is a clear manifestation of the great and creative energy as a representation of Re’s soul.
He empowered men to express gratitude for the sun god’s creation of the universe and this was possible only by using many words and several actions.
The earliest meaning of heka dates back to almost 4000 years; the basic functions of heka is detailed in the text called the Instruction for Merikara, the Middle Kingdom teaching and treatise of the Pharaoh Amenemhet I (2000 BCE). He describes heka as:
He (Re) provided them the heka as a great weapon in order to protect people from the dangerous effects of evil spirits.
Fact: Heka is the great creative force or life supporting energy that connects the subjects, resources and other symbols of life with the almighty universe, which a magician must attempt to learn in order to work magic in an effective way.
Heka, the Inherent Energy
When you look into living beings, heka is the inherent energy that is both aural and magical in nature. Mana is the personal power found in every living being. Original school of mythological beliefs tells us that each animal and plant has its own special amount of heka. The great kings and pharaohs of ancient Egypt also had plenty of heka, as did ordinary citizens of the country, though with varying amounts.
Reddish tinged hair was the symbol of great heka powers because of the pronounced magical powers attached with the said color. Right from the middle Ages, the practice of heka was open to anyone who wished to follow it. To pursue the art of heka, one needed literacy and a basic knowledge of numbers and one need not belong to the class of aristocracy or priesthood.
Divine Magic and Heavenly Magic
In fact, heka was the god itself and heka was the lord of divine magic; some people also call it the divine personification of heavenly magic. Some times, heka is also visible as an image containing a bearded man wearing a lion headdress. Another meaningful definition is in the funerary spell number 261 of the Coffin Text, sourced from a Middle Kingdom, sarcophagus. This spell is entitled as “To become the god heka” and the text provides an invaluable insight on the extraordinary powers of heka.
Historians generally agree that the word heka is interchangeable to many other meanings; available records from 1000 BC onwards, show that heka represented god and power. Visual images also provide a graphical account of lion headed goddess of Sekhmet, which indicates the close association of the present day gods with the magical kingdom of heka.
The Ultimate Force of Animation and Manifestation
In other words, heka also signifies consecration of universal energy that in turn refers to the god’s ability to empower humans with creative thoughts and reactions and later convert them into their physical formations in the mortal world. Thus, heka is a powerful force that serves as the ultimate force of animation and manifestation of every known and available ritual or ceremony. The magical use of amulets or in perspective with Sau, the term heku is very indicative of an image provided with a form and then fill it up with the power of heka.
Just like any other religion, even ancient Egypt had its own dosage of magical powers that sought to animate every form of creation. Egyptian heka is very old and extremely powerful with its suggestive symbolic gestures and actions. The principle of magic was very common in the ancient empires of Egypt and everyone considered it a real force. Egyptian heka influenced several civilizations of the world, more so the great empires of Asia Minor, Rome and Greece. The Egyptian god Thoth is synonymous with the Greek Hermes Trismegistus, who was also the deity for wisdom and learning.
Heka in ancient Egypt depended on four important and critical components:
the all-important potency that provided power to the creator at the beginning of time
sacred texts and scriptures that provide an invaluable insight on magic
magical rituals or treatments and other sundry procedures
medicinal prescriptions, drugs and concoctions
Each of these components relate to each other by a common objective of providing a desired result. Magic has no home of its own, but it does have a foundation: ancient Egypt.