WHAT IS INITIATION
"The purpose of Initiation is a conventional attempt to realize man's place in the universe and in the divine scheme of things, and this, I believe, the Eyptptian Mystical System achieved for the first time in an orderly and philosophical manner..." - Lewis Spence
"To the Initiated of the sanctuary, no doubt, was reserved the knowledge of the god in the abstract, the god concealed in the unfathomable depths of his own essence. But for the less refined, adoration of the people were presented the endless images of deities sculptured on the walls of the tmeples." - Alphonse Mariette
As Egyptologists study the ancient Egyptian people and their culture, it appears they (and the rest of us) fall under the "less refined" group, as Alphonse Mariette states. We seem to be content to gaze upon the outer forms of the divinities (gods) sculpted on the walls of the temples, yet never think to understand that broad mystical concept of life of which these ancient gods were but the outer semblance and concrete symbol of. Their figures represented so much more than just their sculpted form.
The Egyptian priests taught a doctrine of metaphysics that appealed to the highest aspirations of Man, and they kept it a secret, never to be revealed to the people but under fables and allegories (ie. Osiris and Isis).
THE URAEUS CROWN
u•rae•us (yoo re'as) n. a representation of the sacred asp upon the headdress of rulers of Ancient Egypt, symbolizing supreme power
Uraeus is a Greek word to describe a fiery cobra rearing up. In ancient Egypt, this serpent figure was attached to the front of a headdress/crown as an ornament, protruding from the forehead, above the brow, and worn by divinities and sovereigns. It was an emblem of "supreme power," reserved for divine royalty and diety. History books tell us it was believed to be a protective symbol that protected the king from all evil by spitting fire upon his enemies. They also tell us it is associated with the goddess Wadjet and Isis and bla, bla, bla...
In any case, thoroughout history, the snake/serpent/cobra symbolized:
• transformation and evolution
• the unconscious
• rejuvination and healing
• psychic energy
• sin (Christianity)
The uraeus crown was the symbol of true Initiation - symbol of an Initiate. The band of gold (crown) with a cobra rearing up from the forehaed was a symbol of procreative energy of life, which had been transformed and spiritualized. It was an insignia of the majestic position of a High Priest or High Priestess.
There was a time long before King Tutankhamen wore the uraeus crown when the King and the High Priest were one and the same person. He was the earthly and spiritual leader of the people. But as Egypt grew in culture and wealth, the tasks were divided up and a separation of duties followed; The Pharaoh ruled over the stately affairs and the High Priest fulfilled the duties of the Temple as guardian of knowledge in every field.
Fast Forward: Many years later, Egypt fell into decline. Under the Ptolemies came the dissipation of the sacred arcana and the violation of the sanctuaries of the Hermetic Gods. When this happened, the members of the secret schools separated and the priests retired into the Arabian desert and journeyed to different parts of the world, taking with them the old doctrines. When the sacred arana left Egypt, the original, true purpose/meaning/symbol of the uraeus crown went with it, and new symbolic meanings found their way into the history books. It was during these later years that the Egyptian kings and queens inherited the uraeus headdress as a traditional symbol of their great royal power and authority, not knowing that the crown they now wore was not the symbolic crown of an Initiate but simply costume jewelry.
The original uraeus (rearing cobra) represented the Divine Fire in the human body (spiritual energy) "rearing up" the spinal cord, through the chakra system, eventually activating the pituitary gland, or "Third Eye," which is located above the brow between your eyes, exactly where the uraeus is attached to the crown. (The snake in the human body is the spine, and the spine is an important nervous center and carrier of spiritual energy, known as Kundalini.)
It has been said that the Third Eye is a direct doorway to your subconscious (unconscious) mind. The headdress with the cobra head protruding from the forehead exemplifies this symbology.
When the Third Eye chakra is awakened, the person may see waking visions, places, and people as clairvoyance is a byproduct of this chakra. In ancient Egypt, the "INITIATE" who wore the uraeus crown possessed these abilities and other occult powers.