Friday, May 4, 2012

Return to Nubia

A day after the coronation of Ramses II, I had a free time to explore my homeland in the past life ‘Nubia’. I reincarnated from a holy Nubia high priest that perhaps and settled here in Nubia for centuries.

‘The settlement started about ten thousand years ago when our people find their way to be in this fertile soil, after a long journey on bare foot, nomad from one place to another. It is the time when we just found the first God to be worshiped. We did not have any pencils and papers to write but we mark the stones, we started to write something on the stone, we drew animals, we created our very own arts on the stone, that what we knew, to preserve our ideas, to show our generation for what we have done in the past.

We are here until the other Egyptian brethren occupied our homeland and we then merged to become a great nation. During this new kingdom, we were so prosperous with lots of gold, silver, food and drinks. Centuries passed and many unprecedented events happened to us and to our homeland; but you can still witness today, in this area between Luxor and Aswan, the legacy of our works during that era. Our hands marked this place as great civilization long before all stories of other nation begun”.

About the image above: The famous animal painting on the rock,
collection of the Nubian Museum Aswan

About the image above: First God that human being worshiped
collection of the Nubian Museum Aswan

About the image above: Model of Nubian house in diorama
collection of the Nubian Museum, Aswan

About the image above: Model of Nubian door entrance in diorama
collection of the Nubian Museum, Aswan

About the image above: Today’s Nubian style house
at Nubian village, Aswan

Now I feel so familiar with these places even though I have never visited them before. I talked to people easily and went around very peacefully.  I return here to my homeland, I return to Nubia!

The region of Nubia is in between Sudan and Southern of Egypt, along the river Nile.  I was trying to imagine how my people traveled in the ancient days along the river Nile. I took night safari alone on a felucca to sail the river in the middle of the night at about 01.30 past midnight. No body was there but me and my Nubian felucca captain!

About the image above: Nile River

About the image above: Felucca at the Nile River

About the image above: The ruin of Elephantine

About the image above: Model of Nubian boat
collection of the Nubian Museum, Aswan

About the image above: Nubian women diorama
collection of the Nubian Museum, Aswan

It was fun, peaceful and magical. I can feel the night wind touched my hair, my face as if saying - welcome back to Nubia! I can feel the spirit of the night of the Nile centuries ago that still exist today. I can feel how was the battle of our people against the enemy of the kingdom and won that war. This is a flashback journey long early centuries ago. This is a discovery about my experiences in the early human civilization of this beautiful country, prosperous, peaceful and proud of its own culture.

All written on papyrus
Eyes of Horus
sharp,  the direction toward us
No one against him
  - Son of Isis-
Looking at you
May love and faith on his eyes
To light the temple of Horus
In the very dark night
Come, come, Horus
Guard us and protect the temples
Holy words – Can see from his eyes
Horus, the son of Isis

Ode to Horus – by I Wayan Mawa

The ‘Elephantine’ is the place where I belong, but it is empty now, with some ruins that still remained. My people settled in the hilly side and lived from the prosperity of the Nile River - cultivating a variety of plants as their source of food, living with their camels, horses and other domestic animals, a very simple lifestyle.

I sat down in one corner of my Nubian friend’s house, where I was served a Nubian tea with Nubian sweets; it was in the afternoon, as I was waiting anxiously for sunset over the hill across the desert. As the sun was setting slowly, the village was turning pitch-black, since most houses had very limited access to electricity and were saving on some energy too - it is okay, since here in Nubia, people don’t need much power to light their houses; my friend’s house, just like the others, was small in size and enough to settle all members of the family.

One boy approached me and offered a kind of art pieces made from a combination of stone, wood and colorful fabrics. They were very interesting pieces and quite unique, and I recalled that they are similar artifacts featured in every Nubian temples.

About the image above: Abu Simbel Temple

About the image above: Statue of Ramses II at Heliopolis

One of our great kings was Ramses II; he was a king, warrior, leader, commander, temple builder, and many other outstanding talents. He was the greatest Nubian man that led our people to quarry metric tons of stones, marble, and granites to build our temples that still exist today. He was the king who built one temple that includes the sun phenomenon of astronomy science during that period.

I am Ramses the II
I am the leader of this land
My hands are strong
My voice very loud

I will turn this land into a heaven
Into a heaven in the heaven

Song of Ramses II – by I Wayan Mawa

On the 22nd of February is his coronation, sworn in to be our King, and on that time, the sunrise touches his face at the cape temple of Abu Simbel.

On the 22nd of October is his birthday; and exactly on the same date, as the sun rises it also touches his face at the cape temple of Abu Simbel. Only twice a year the sunrise would visit his temple, as if wanting to “say” warmest happy birthday and congratulate him as new King of great Nubia.

About the image above: Hieroglaphic writting on stone
collection of the Nubian Museum

About the image above: Isis Temple at Philae Island

I visited the temple of Isis – Temple for Love and Magic – in the Philae Island. This temple has moved about 200 meters from the original location because of the raising of the water Nile River dam water that covered the temple almost in half.

When the world starting to set
When the world starting to rest
I will be in the west
Gather my power to create my own best
The word of spells
From the guarded wells
That all spirits where it dwells
I am here for those entire manifestations well
Will bring you a million loves
Will enjoy many stages love
Spread the world, the wings of love
To Nubia that we love
Through the power of my right hand
That hand will never bend
My holy words so powerful
My spell so powerful
My inner feeling is in you
Is in you
Is in you

World of Isis – by I Wayan Mawa

The great temple of Abu Simbel is one of the Nubian creations located in the uppermost part of Egypt, almost near the Sudanese border. At early dawn we went on a caravan with a cohort of military escorts, carrying automatic machine guns. We felt very safe while on our journey to witness the astrological phenomenon of the temple. Today is the 22nd of February, and the very first glimpse of sunrise will greet the king and congratulate him for his coronation as the ruler of a great kingdom. Today we will marvel at this phenomenon at Abu Simbel.

The journey was amazing. While travelling in the middle of a pitch-black desert we can see countless glimmering stars above us, and this rare wonder of nature added excitement to our trip.

After waiting for quite awhile, finally saw the sun slowly appearing in the eastside horizon, where you can see ‘the first sunrise’ really touches the face of King Ramses II, that was an amazing experience to see such incredible phenomenon with very precise calculation from the ancient world!  Our ancestors had tremendous vision on this subject, studied it with perfect calculation of date, time at an exact angle. Well-done! I must congratulate them for being a genius on this matter.

About the image above: Model of silver crown
collection of the Nubian museum, Aswan

We have two temples here placed side by side, and both of these temples have been relocated to a higher ground from its original location, due to the rising of the water of Nile River dam, which might destroy these temples.

It would be a great idea that after embarking on a procession from Abu Simbel, Isis Temple, Kalabhsa, to continue increasing your knowledge about the evolution of our culture by visiting the only Nubian Museum here in Aswan. Here, you will be able to study and understand more about Nubian era, its astounding development from century to century.

There are many more places here that I need to explore to refresh my memory.  Just like the quarry for the obelisks, where I felt like I have been here, blessed the rocks and granites before they are cut into columns, statues and obelisk. I can still see one of the unfinished obelisk left on the ground, maybe because this piece has cracks along its body, left there forever…

About the image above: Bread distribution
collection of the Nubian Museum, Aswan

This was a holy site for every Nubian in the past, and thus will remain as such for us in years to come, because of the dedicated and sacrificing workers that support the preservation and development of this fascinating historical site. 

If I miss this place, then I will return here again, to my beloved Nubia!

1 comment:

  1. Dear I Wayan Mawa,
    I'm an Indian Journalist. We had e-mail contact during your Jack Fest at Raffles. Somehow, my recent mails to your old ID gets bounced. Could you please get back to me on

    Thanks and regards
    Shree Padre