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Glossary of Terms

Membra Animae

Membra AnimaeLiterally, the limbs of the body of being. Ophidians hold that all being begins with the source of Spirit, the stars, which is called Khabs in Egyptian. From the Khabs comes the Khu, the great immortal, unique and unmanifest Spirit. This Spirit is like a Serpent moving through time, periodically shedding its skin which becomes its incarnations. When the Spirit manifests into time and space, it does so in the Ethereal Body or Soul, which the Egyptians called the Sa. The Sa carries the incarnated Will of the Khu in each incarnation. This Sa also houses all of the temporal and transient parts of one’s being which are born and die in each incarnation. These transient parts of one’s character and being are known as the Persona, which the Egyptians called the Ba. They gave it the appearance of a little bird with a human head. It is this Persona which houses all of those things which one thinks of when they contemplate "the self". Within this Persona called the Ba are the Fires and the Waters, the Mind of mundane awareness, the shade and the physical body. The Fires are the desires and drives of both the earthly body and the Spiritual Sa. The Egyptians called this the Ka, and it is what also fires one’s Magick in Heka (He Ka). The Compliment of the Fires are the Waters. Here we find one’s behavioral and emotional complexes, and the feelings by which one navigates existence. Like the Ka, these feelings too come from both the body, and from the Sa. The Egyptians called this the Ab, the Heart, and it was terribly important for them to keep one’s Waters pure, otherwise bad things would be created in the world around them. These waters, envisioned as the heart of a person where we "feel" the most, were weighed and judged after death to determine the state of being of a person during their life. Did they cultivate a good and harmonious heart? Or was it polluted and sullied? The next layer of being was called the Khaibit by the Egyptians, and was imagined as a shadow or shade. Here one could find the manifest life force energy which inhabits a living body. Finally we have the physical body itself, built to be a biological vehicle for the manifest Spirit energy of the Sa, or Soul. This last layer of being was called the Khat by the Egyptians. Such are the main layers or limbs in the body of being, both manifest and unmanifest.

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