Saturday, December 27, 2008

Look inside 'THE SMITING TEXTS'



Chapter 1


THEY INTERCEPTED him as he came out of Baltimore-Washington Airport, two men wearing suits and an air of officialdom like a brisk cologne.

“Mr Anson Hunter, the British Egyptologist?”

Egyptologist? That sounded good. Very establishment. Anson stood a bit taller, which placed his beanstalk elevation a few inches above theirs. The man could have said independent, renegade Egyptologist and phenomenologist, lecturer at out-of-town halls and auditoriums, writer, blogger and alternative theorist as well as leader of occasional, fringe tour groups to Egypt. But instead the man had said ‘Egyptologist’.

“Who wants to know?”

“You are invited to Johns Hopkins University. They wish to hear you speak.”

Anson goggled. Johns Hopkins and Anson Hunter? His moment of elation quickly faded. They didn’t belong in the same sentence.

“A nice thought, gentlemen, but venerable institutions like Johns Hopkins don’t wish people like me to speak. They would prefer us not to breathe.”

Anson had arrived to give a lecture on ancient Egyptian ritual smiting power and execration texts at a hired Masonic hall that evening.

He tried to move past, but the men blocked his way, smiling with steely politeness.

“Please come with us, Sir.”

“There must be some mistake.”

The spokesman frowned and reached inside his coat.

Hell, Anson thought, what is this? Has mainstream Egyptology finally sent a hit squad?
The hand came out of the coat.
Anson resumed the business of breathing. The man flipped open a wallet, by way of introduction.
Anson glimpsed a crest – an eagle inside a circle and the words:

U.S. Department of Homeland Security

Also a name, Browning. He was a broad-faced man with steady eyes.
Why me?

Anson’s ex-wife May had always said that he had the burning eyes of fanatic. Had they picked him out as a likely threat to the US homeland? This Johns Hopkins stuff was just a cover for an arrest.

He suddenly felt very alien.

“I’ve been a mild threat to conventional Egyptology for years,” he said, “but I hardly rate as a security risk.”

“We need your help, Mr Hunter.”

The other man relieved him of his suitcase and also took his briefcase containing his laptop.

“Careful, there’s an explosive PowerPoint presentation in there,” Anson said.

Browning flicked a glance towards Anson’s briefcase, but a sense of humour overtook his instinct to protect the homeland. He allowed himself a flinty smile.

“Ah, yes. Almost had me going there.”

“Would you please explain why Johns Hopkins Near Eastern Studies Department would be even faintly interested in my theories?”

The man lowered his voice.

“It’s not that Department that wants you. Johns Hopkins is also the Centre of Excellence for a new Homeland Security Centre. Goes by the full name of the Centre for the Study of High Consequence Event Preparedness and Response. You’ll be addressing a consortium that’s studying how the nation can best prepare for and respond to a range of unexpected large-scale incidents or disasters.”

“Me?”

The only large-scale disaster he was familiar with was his own career – his failure to swing the world of Egyptology, with very few exceptions, to his alternative theories. But maybe his luck was changing. Any invitation to speak at Johns Hopkins – anywhere at Johns Hopkins, even in a restroom - was too intoxicating to pass up. Not that his abductors were giving him much choice in the matter.

They led him to a waiting black sedan that purred on the kerbside.
He shrugged, climbed into the back with one of the Homeland men and sank into baffled acceptance. The sedan slid away into traffic.

This was the smoothest of smooth abductions. But they had his attention. He decided he quite enjoyed being whisked away into intrigue.

He was still troubled however.

“I’m not exactly sure where we’re going with this. What has US Homeland Security got to do with ancient Egypt? Or me?”

The Homeland man who sat in the front beside the driver, threw a mystified look over his shoulder.

“Beats me, I’m a practical man. I’ll leave it to others to explain.”

“Then there’s the small matter of my engagement. I’m booked to give a lecture tonight. Hundreds of people will be disappointed. Well, dozens.”

“Cancelled already. Just consider it a change of venue.”

It was quite a turnaround from out-of-town Masonic hall to Johns Hopkins University. A bit presumptuous of them, but he could be flexible.

© Copyright Roy Lester Pond 2008/2009

Friday, November 28, 2008

Anson Hunter, alternative Egyptologist, and US Homeland Security

The Smiting Texts in the company of US Homeland Security etc

My archaeological thriller, The Smiting Texts, was first launched in the UK and generated a fair bit of internet activity.

It features an alternative British Egyptologist who is called on by US Homeland Security when a mysterious threat arises from Egypt's ancient past.
 
It seems Anson Hunter, alternative Egyptologist, theorist, phenomenologist and expert on dangers from the ancient past, just can't help finding himself in the company of the intelligence community.

Amazon Kindle edition (2014 update)

Friday, November 14, 2008

WHERE IS SHE? Answer to location of Egyptian goddess Seshat

ANSWER: This beautifully preserved relief of Seshat, Egyptian goddess of writing, appears at the rear of a colossal seated statue of Rameses the Great in the Temple of Luxor - partly obscured by a facing temple wall.

You can discover more hidden fascinations and mysteries of ancient Egypt in my carefully researched adventure thrillers now available on Amazon Kindle.

Uncover hidden dangers from the ancient past and discover their impact on today through conspiracies and crimes that take their impetus from ancient Egypt.


Seshat is just one of the goddesses who weave their way through my ancient Egyptian adventure thrillers.

Meet Anson Hunter, the witty alternative Egyptologist with a healthy respect for unseen realities and the shadow side of ancient Egypt.

Egypt fiction on kindle






 Kindle edition - Seshat features strongly in this novel

NEW

WHERE ARE THEY? See them on Amazon Kindle

Saturday, November 8, 2008

WHERE IS SHE?


Seshat, the Female Scribe, Foremost in the Library and Goddess of Writing. She features on the cover of The Smiting Texts, but not many people can find her (including our last Egyptian guide). Answer to come.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Synopsis of new ancient Egyptian suspense novel


My new archaeological thriller will be out in the UK soon in hardback and paperback. Here's a bit more about the story.

SYNOPSIS of ‘THE SMITING TEXTS’
A modern archaeological thriller. An ancient, esoteric time bomb

What is the heaven-and-earth-shattering secret? The murder of an Egyptologist rings alarm bells with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Before he knows it they co-opt his son, controversial British historian Anson Hunter, into an investigation that has stunning implications for US security.

Has a threat emerged from the ancient past? They take Anson to ‘The Centre for the Study of High Consequence Event Preparedness and Response’, a consortium studying how the nation can best prepare for and respond to a range of unexpected large-scale incidents or disasters.

The search catapults Anson, Kalila, a Coptic Egyptian girl, and an intelligence team into a race through the length of Egypt, yet soon their search attracts the attention of radical Islamists as well as the Egyptian authorities. Dark suspicions surface, suspicions that Anson’s father found evidence of a secret that will shake the foundations of every major world religion.

Soon, whichever way they turn, Anson and his team find themselves trapped in a labyrinth of intrigue and menace that becomes too hideously real.

What are The Smiting Texts? You’ve seen those scenes and texts carved on temple walls. They show a pharaoh grasping a clutch of foreigners by the hair in one hand, while in the other he holds an upraised mace. Poised in the ultimate iconography of menace, he is about to smash in the unfortunates’ heads.

Symbolism? Propaganda? Execration scenes and smiting texts were state weapons of war believed to have the power to reach out beyond temporal boundaries. Nobody doubted that enemies - present and future - would weaken or simply be flattened as if by a nuclear blast.

Anson Hunter’s special knowledge as an alternative Egyptologist, theorist and phenomenologist could be the key to stopping a catastrophe.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Ancient Egyptian dreaming - a passion since childhood

I am thinking a great deal about where it all began...

Something about ancient Egypt hit me as a child, as it does many thoughtful children, and little wonder, on reflection. Ancient Egypt is not only mysterious and incredibly 'other' to a child, but also, paradoxically, second nature.

Take a look at any young child's sketches and paintings. They're eerily Egyptian, capturing the visible essence of things. The human body is shown side-on in the Egyptian way, just as it appears in tomb paintings and carved on temple walls, the face turned sideways, with the eye, invariably larger than life, dominating the features, the shoulders turned to the front so that both arms are revealed and one foot placed ahead of the other.

Objects - tables, piles of food, animals, trees - float mysteriously in space with little regard for scale. Young people understand ancient Egyptian art and design perfectly. It's how they see the world - eternal, free of time.

A child's Egypt is enviable, I've come to believe. Only as a child can you truly enter the kingdom of Pharaoh, it seems. A child loves mummies, tombs, underworlds filled with fantastic creatures, temples shimmering in bright sunlight, pyramids terrifying in their size, smooth statues of pharaohs, queens and animal-headed gods.

Young people also have a sunny love of life, just as the Egyptians did, and yet both share a dark, hidden world of mystery and magic where animals can communicate and powerful forces outside of their control influence events. Children know a place that older people forget, a shadowy underworld of fearsome chimeras.

Young people love secrets and no civilisation was so steeped in secrets and mystery as ancient Egypt. From its hieroglyphs and hidden tombs to its mummies and spells for the afterlife.

When a small child goes to bed to its little death-sleep at night, doesn't it take its most treasured possessions with it on the journey, its toys and dolls, accompanying the child into an afterlife of dreams?

And what about the scale of Egypt, pyramids, stone pharaohs carved out of mountains, soaring temples... a place built, as if from a child's imagination, for giants.

With the average Egyptian dying in their twenties, a case can be made for saying that it was young people who built the wonders of Egypt.

Put a child in a sandpit and what will it build? A pyramid of sand.

And think of the scenes painted in Egyptian tombs, those painted passages that throw their lengths hundreds of metres into the cliffs, the decorated walls showing scenes of feasting, families fishing from skiffs on the Nile, flowers, fields and animals. They're not places of gloom like a modern graveyard. They're filled with scenes as bright and colourful as a child's nursery.

Ancient Egypt is a place of great wonders where anything seems possible. Little wonder then that so many young people fall in love with it for a lifetime...

Friday, September 26, 2008

Death the designer of Egypt's tombs?

There's a theory about Paleolithic cave art that it's the result of a cave in the mind, created there by the wiring of the human nervous system, and that deep caves inspired the idea of a spirit-filled underworld. In a cave, the mind is said to fill the space with spirit animals and beings. Are the tombs of Egypt also the result of our internal wiring?
The tomb in the mind?

Or is the Egyptian tomb the mirror of something else - death itself?
I am interested in the theory that the Egyptian tomb may have been inspired by the so-called near-death experience. Think how closely an Egyptian tomb echoes the classic NDE... a journey along a narrow passage with attendant beings... followed by judgement and reflection on one's life.
Was it something experiential and not just spiritual and intellectual that inspired the Egyptian tomb and religion?

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Hidden danger today from ancient Egypt's mysterious past? Begin a 7-book 'binge read' series on Kindle and paperback



Egypt-based adventure thriller. Ancient secrets, modern global conspiracies



THEY INTERCEPTED him as he came out of Baltimore-Washington Airport, two men wearing suits and an air of officialdom like a brisk cologne.

“Mr Anson Hunter, the British Egyptologist?” 

So begins fiction thriller "The Smiting Texts".  
Why has US intercepted a renegade Egyptologist? Is he the key to investigating an ancient esoteric threat to the US today...? A clash between two superpowers, ancient Egypt and modern America.

 
Ancient Egypt is not about to rise again and "clobber us", or so Egyptologists assure us. Even though the remains of the pharaohs have survived the aeons and the peculiar lustre of eternity still clings to the remnants of Egypt's past.


Ancient Egypt is a dead civilization, they say.
And yet...
As 'The Smiting Texts' affair shows, the ancient Egyptians did believe in supranormal power - smiting rituals and execration texts, expressed through pottery, papyrus, bone and architecture. Remote killing, you see, was a state instrument of power. The priests would write execration texts on the sides of jars and then utter the words of threat formulae, before ritually smashing the jars in order to bring enemy nations to their knees. Nobody doubted that enemies of the state would weaken or simply be flattened, knocked down dead as if by an atomic blast.

Smitten by Egypt

You've seen those archetypal smiting scenes - Rameses the Great, giving a clutch of vile foreigners a headache by bashing in their craniums with a diorite mace.

My archaeologist hero Anson Hunter investigates unseen forces from the ancient past

This was not just a piece of wishful propaganda, although it was certainly that too. No, it was a detonation. These were esoteric armaments. In fact, the ancient Egyptian firmly believed that the power of such imprecations could reach out beyond temporal boundaries and smite across the ages...




USA’s Superpower vs ancient Egypt's Supranormal power, in The Smiting Texts - first in the Egypt series




     Secrets and hidden danger - Egypt adventure fiction





‘Egypt Eyes’ –  “Be my eyes in Egypt,” she says to him. The celebrated young Egyptologist and space archaeologist Dr Constance Somers had once explored ancient Egypt from space. But now she is legally blind. She hires controversial, alternative Egyptologist Anson Hunter to be her guide on a Nile cruise. ‘Show me the hidden Egypt of your imagination,’ she says. But does she have a darker purpose, planning to use his unique skills to help her penetrate a secret and dangerous site that she found?
And why are agents of the US National Reconnaissance Office, a secret Intelligence agency in charge of satellites and overhead security, suddenly taking an interest in the work of the space archaeologist? Has she made a discovery in her satellite archaeology that has global security ramifications?
Anson must face unexpected enemies at every turn and use his skills to survive the dangers of a lost underground sanctuary as he tries to unlock its shattering secret.



‘Egypt Eyes’ is groundbreaking adventure and mystery fiction with an Egyptologist’s blogs and photos.

Book poster




Kindle edition.


And now the latest Anson Hunter mystery...


Begin The Anson Hunter series here

SEE OTHER ROY LESTER POND TITLES AND SERIES IN THE SIDEBAR HERE
OR AT AMAZON KINDLE 

Ancient Egypt’s WMDs?