At first sight, the North Wall of the Sarcophagus Chamber of Wnjs's pyramid
doesn't seem to be much alluring. It's just an offering wall.
If it were important for the funerary (or initiatory) rituals
and it could be of interest to the specialized scholar,
then to the lay reader it would look like a long and frankly
bothering sequel of blunt and repeated utterances
whose symbolic and ritual meanings are almost impossible to decypher.
Apart from the word play between the offerings and the ritual actions
and some stylistically elegant utterances, the North Wall seems definitely unappealing.
So the temptation to give it just a passing glance,
store it away and dismiss it is rather strong.
That is exactly what I was going to do, when I decided to look at the wall,
not by Sethe's transcription, but by Piankoff's photographs.
And as soon as I looked at that very wall I felt that those hieroglyphs
were not so dull as they seemed after all, as at my first cursory glance.
I was especially impressed by the lower register,
with its sequel of 55 columns, each one of them enclosing a spell,
each one of them presenting an offering, each one beginning with "Wsjr-Wnjs".
It was this last observation that made me wonder why in the other registers,
along with "Wsjr-Wnjs", there were individual "Wsjr" and also individual "Wnjs".
Thence, many individual "Wnjs" in the upper, very few in the middle,
but not a single one in the lower register. Could that hint at a "transformation process"?
As a matter of fact the deceased king (any "deceased")
must reach an Osirian state in order to go safely on his perilous journey
through the realm of the Dead. So what if those hieroglyphs depicted and narrated
the various stages of a rite of passage, with its multiple psychological nuances,
its teachings, its spurnings, its progression - in conclusion:
the psychic transformation of the "deceased" from an earthly state
to a "divine" condition? A tale told by objects, that is:
by the specific offerings. And that also explains the seemingly needless repetitions
of the same motifs and, in many instances, of the same utterances.
They are not just "repetitions", but a different way to consider
a specific fact, from a more profound level of consciousness.
In the North Wall I see the narration of the struggle between Horus and Seth.
The price is the "eye of Horus", that is, the precious object
continuosly stolen (by the irrational instincts) and rescued (by the rational ones).
A neverending battle of which the initiand must be aware of
in order to balance the two opposing forces
(the reconciliation of the two gods hinted at in utterance 34),
reaching a sort of Jungian "Coniunctio Oppositorum".
This is a rough structural plan of the northern wall, according to my views.
A. [ 23,25,32 ] : Preparation ritual (cleansing & purification : the first)
B. [ 34-36 ] : Teaching (the first)
C. [ 37-42 ] : Birth ritual (opening of the mouth)
D. [ 32 ] : Purification (the second)
E. [ 43-57 ] : Qualification trial
A. [72-81 ] : Confirmation ritual (anointment & investiture)
B. [25,32 ] : Purification (the third)
C. [ 82-95 ] : Teaching (the second)
D. [ 96-116 ] : Trial (first part : defeat)
A . [117-139 ] : Trial (second part : victory)
B. [ 140-170 ] : Psychological self-elaboration
C. [ 171 ] : Wisdom
If you want to have a clearer idea of the mental processes behind my interpretation
you can read
the Subtextual thread here included.
For what concerns my vocalization as I repeat, it is just an amateurish experiment
with many possible inconsistencies and errors. But I was fascinated by the inner rhythm
of this wall and couldn't resist to the urge of trying to give a vague idea of it.
At worst, I will say with Horatio:
"Parturiunt montes, nascetur ridiculus mus!"
the YouTube address.