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The Sphinx Mystery (Anglais) Broché – 20 janvier 2009

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Shrouded in mystery for centuries, the Sphinx of Giza has frustrated many who have attempted to discover its original purpose. Accounts exist of the Sphinx as an oracle, as a king’s burial chamber, and as a temple for initiation into the Hermetic Mysteries. Egyptologists have argued for decades about whether there are secret chambers underneath the Sphinx, why the head-to-body ratio is out of proportion, and whose face adorns it. In The Sphinx Mystery, Robert Temple addresses the many mysteries of the Sphinx. He presents eyewitness accounts, published over a period of 281 years, of people who saw the secret chambers and even went inside them before they were sealed in 1926--accounts that had been forgotten until the author rediscovered them. He also describes his own exploration of a tunnel at the rear of the Sphinx, perhaps used for obtaining sacred divinatory dreams. Robert Temple reveals that the Sphinx was originally a monumental Anubis, the Egyptian jackal god, and that its face is that of a Middle Kingdom Pharaoh, Amenemhet II, which was a later re-carving. In addition, he provides photographic evidence of ancient sluice gate traces to demonstrate that, during the Old Kingdom, the Sphinx as Anubis sat surrounded by a moat filled with water--called Jackal Lake in the ancient Pyramid Texts--where religious ceremonies were held. He also provides evidence that the exact size and position of the Sphinx were geometrically determined in relation to the pyramids of Cheops and Chephren and that it was part of a pharaonic resurrection cult.

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31 internautes sur 32 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
You Can Teach an Old Dog New Tricks 16 mars 2009
Par D. H. - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
This book is full of information about the sphinx and its surrounding structures that has been compiled by an enormous amount of work by the author. Every person who reads this book will learn some new things, and correct some of their misconceptions about the sphinx. It is inspiring to encounter a researcher who has the abilities to find information from so many different sources--where none of them involve the Internet. His data is based on keen on-site observation, historical documentation, and measurable analysis. The book is mostly written well, and it is a fun and rewarding read. Temple's analysis is creative and gives the reader a lot of things to think about.

Temple does offer many speculations that the reader can ponder. The book is not perfect, and I do not agree with several of Temple's conclusions. For example, after undertaking a fascinating analysis of the Sphinx Temple and its adjacent Valley Temple, the author points out much evidence regarding water weathering due to filling and emptying the moat from the Nile river, the buildings' functional purposes, and underground chamber placement. However, he doesn't mention anything about how the granite block in the Valley Temple are cut to fit the already weathered, and much larger, limestone blocks.

Thus, one of the major arguments presented by John West and Robert Shoch are not considered when Temple dismisses the rainfall theory of the weathering. The author apparently considers the interior granite blocks to have been in existence since the origin of the Valley Temple, which does not seem to fit the on-site evidence. And even though the author is fully aware of other megalithic structures across the world, they are not considered here at all.

In addition, the author simply states that he is not an expert on the climate history of the Giza plateau, and does not even consider this worthy of analysis. This is not an insignificant point, because much of Temple's view regarding Egyptian textual interpretation depends on the Giza plateau being a somewhat sandy desert for several centuries or millenia prior to 3000 BC.

It also seems illogical at times to ascribe high knowledge and understanding to the middle and new kingdom Egyptian priests, and then at other times, to assume a very low level of understanding and petty and/or egotistical behavior that it inconsistent with highly enlightened and spiritually adept priestly initiates.

Another shortcoming of the book is that it does not present the exact date at which the author would place the building of the Giza plateau; rather, it only gives the opinion that it must precede 2700 BC by several centuries. The author makes many references to his forthcoming book, which is titled "Egyptian Dawn." This book will apparently provide Temple's opinion on this matter as well as many others. This is somewhat annoying because it leaves Temple's conclusions on certain issues in limbo. Nonetheless, it is a given that the reader will certainly read this next book when it is published.

The book would have read better if Temple would have stated his thesis and conclusion to each section at the first of the section, rather than forcing the reader to explore whole chapters and then lead up to the climax at the end. Sometimes, this made me impatient for the author to just get straight to the point.

There are many long picture captions that strain the eyes a little, but the captions are at least fully explained. The text does an excellent job of referencing the numbers of the figures and the pages where they occur--and there are lots and lots of pictures and figures!

For those readers interested in Temple's analysis of the Anubis-Sphinx-Sirius connection, it should be mentioned that the author does not mention this at all. Perhaps this will be addressed in his next book. In fact, Sirius is mentioned only once in passing.

It would also have been helpful if Temple would have considered the shamanic interpretation of the relevant Egyptian texts, such as that presented by Jeremy Naydler's book, "Shamanic Wisdom in the Pyramid Texts," rather than only the funerary interepretation.

Altough the book has several shortcomings, is still an excellent read for everybody.
14 internautes sur 14 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Robert Temple has a dog in this Egyptology fight 3 mai 2010
Par David Roy - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
Every once in a while, I go on an "alternative" history binge, reading a book that's supposed to turn the common knowledge of history on its ear. This time, when that urge hit me, I picked up Robert Temple's (along with his wife Olivia) The Sphinx Mystery, a book subtitled "The Forgotten Origins of the Sanctuary of Anubis." It's quite an interesting book, though it tails off at the end and becomes a bit of a slog to get through. Still, I persevered and was rewarded. Temple makes his case well. While I don't know enough about Egyptology to definitively say that Temple is right or wrong, the book is certainly plausible. It has its fun moments as well.

Yes, I did say "Sanctuary of Anubis" in the last paragraph. One of the obvious things about the Sphinx is that the head is much too small for the huge body that it's sitting on top of. Was it recarved into a pharaoh's image? If so, whose? Temple not only makes the case for who actually did the recarving, but he also his an interesting theory about what the Sphinx was before this. He states that the Giza plateau, where all of the Great Pyramids sit and where the Sphinx sits just off to the side, is a sacred entrance to the realm of the dead, and that the Sphinx is the guardian of that entrance. While the Sphinx is commonly described as having the body of a lion, Temple says there is no way that this is a lion. Instead, it's a giant statue of the god Anubis, the dog/jackal that deals with those crossing over from the living to the dead. He proposes that the statue was disfigured during the 150 years of chaos between the Old and the Middle Kingdom of Egypt, and that a pharaoh decided to make it his own face instead.

The cover of the book is interesting, with a picture (both on the front and on the spine) showing how easily the Sphinx converts to a dog figure , along with a huge picture of the Sphinx's face, a picture he uses later on in the book to compare with a statue of the pharaoh he says did the revamping. Temple continues the wonderful use of pictures by cramming the book with a huge number of valuable photographs, both old and new. Wonderfully, each picture has a huge caption where Temple describes what you're seeing and the relevance to the point he's making. These photos range from those taken in the 1800s by the various expeditions who unburied the Sphinx from the drifting desert sands to those taken in the 1900s when the Sphinx was finally uncovered for good. Finally, we get photos taken by Temple himself, or his wife, when they were given almost unprecedented access to the Sphinx, the Sphinx Temple and the various landmarks around the Giza plateau. These pictures illustrate Temple's arguments beautifully and they're interesting to look at, too.

If the Sphinx as Anubis was the only idea presented in the book, it would still be a radical (though short) book. Temple then takes on those who have tried to establish the age of the Sphinx, especially those (like Edward Malkowski in Before the Pharaohs) who want to use the various water erosion signs to date the Sphinx to earlier than 10,000 BC. He claims that there is a good reason for all of the water erosion that would still make the Sphinx only date back around 4000 years or so. The Nile river flowed near Giza back in ancient Egypt, and would regularly flood every year. He claims that there is a channel around the Sphinx so that, for religious reasons, the Sphinx was an island unto itself for a large part of the year. Water flowed in and out of what he calls the "Sphinx Moat", either from the river itself or from collected rainwater (there was much more rain in Egypt back then) that the Egyptians funneled into the moat. The constant inflow and outflow of water into this moat accounts for the water erosion. It's a fascinating theory for those who are familiar with the other arguments.

There is a lot more in The Sphinx Mystery that is interesting, though it does seem to get a lot more tedious when Temple begins talking the geometry of the "Golden Angle" and how prevalent its use was by the Egyptians, as well as getting into the geometry of resurrection and how the Sphinx (and the whole of Giza) was involved in all of this. By this point, however, Temple has you hooked. If you're not hooked, you wouldn't have made it this far to begin with. The book finishes with a long section with every documented mention of the Sphinx from Roman times to 1837, then moving on to a short article on the age of the Sphinx and various accounts of excavations of the site.

One thing I loved about The Sphinx Mystery was Temple's writing style and his crankiness. Twice in the first 100 pages, he goes off on a tangent about the failures of the modern educational system. He claims that Egyptology is dying because nobody is teaching it well (and if they are, nobody's learning it). He decries the over-specialization of today's historians, the "consensus reality" we all live in, where we all believe the same thing and nothing can alter our views because we're too lazy to have our eyes opened. This also leads to "consensus blindness", where people can take what's right in front of their face and try to rationalize it to fit their belief rather than allowing what they "know" to be proven wrong. There are constant asides to this sort of thing throughout the book, where he chastises current thinking for not believing the evidence he says is right in front of their face.

This sort of arrogance made the book worth reading to me, as I was constantly picturing Temple as the old man grumbling about all the kids tracking all over his lawn. However, what also made the book worth reading is the logical nature of Temple's argument as he traces it from the beginning to the end. A lot of mysterious references from old texts make sense once they are applied to Temple's ideas, which does add credence to them. Whether or not Temple is right in his theories, the way he presents his case makes The Sphinx Mystery an interesting book if you're into Egyptology. I found it has rekindled my interest in the subject and should be read. It may wash the consensus blindness from your eyes.

Originally published on Curled Up With a Good Book © David Roy, 2009
11 internautes sur 12 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Too much of a good thing? 31 mai 2009
Par Awakening Sleepwalker - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
The "complete" review/listing of everthing ever written in regard to the Sphinx - for me too much of the historical review (one can just skip over those areas if so inclined!), but still very worthwhile for new insights/explanations and bringing back to public attention things already discovered about the Sphinx (inner/lower chambers, inscriptions, original likeness and even a good case for the correct pharoah who had it re-carved). Highly recommend for the specialist or the lay reader. Quite the "hefty tome", but a must read if one intends to comment intelligently on the Sphinx and it's "checkered" history. The Egyptologists should read what the "professional" Egyptologists have forgotten/ignored.
6 internautes sur 7 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
A Masterpiece 12 décembre 2009
Par David Zobell - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
Robert Temple's attention to detail is spell bounding and his writing style is flawless. He presents a case that is difficult to refute and demands the attention of anyone interested in ancient Egypt.
2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
The blindness has been lifted 29 août 2011
Par LordOptivus - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
From the perspective of one self-taught in ancient history and more esoteric ideas concerning history, the evidence that Robert Temple brings forward in this book is quite convincingly real. It really begs each reader to consider the idea that perhaps what they have learned in school and simply "known" to be true might have practically no evidence to back it up other than enough people have believed it to be true for a long enough time for it to be globally recognized as truth. I had always noticed the Sphinx looked a little odd with its tiny head but I had really no explanation for it other than perhaps the head had been re-carved once or even more times by egotistical pharaohs. Temple, however, has obviously done his homework and presents not only the evidence in the context of his argument, but then includes the original texts in the appendix. The answer, once revealed, makes you think, "wow, well duh, of course! How did I not see that before?" He expertly brings forward both evidence for and against but then points out how they work together to paint the correct picture. For instance, an Egyptologist studying the Sphinx when it had been covered up to the neck in sand would never have been able to see the lower half of the structure and therefore would have no way of dating that portion, nor would he suspect the head and the body to be of two different time periods (I mean, no one else has apparently). So although countless other experts mocked his theories that the Sphinx was carved much later than the 4th Dynasty because later on, when the body had been excavated, everyone KNEW that the body was from the 4th Dynasty so the head MUST be from that time period, too. Temple actually considers this Egyptologist's findings as a major part of his own argument because it now makes sense.

My biggest problem with the book and only reason I didn't give it 5 stars is that nearing the last couple chapters, Temple begins to get way off track from the Sphinx itself and goes on for a while about an aspect that indeed relates to his theory but I don't think it needed to be described in such detail (especially considering how many times he mentions that he describes it more in "The Crystal Sun" or "Egyptian Dawn: Exposing the Real Truth Behind Ancient Egypt"). It was interesting information, but I kept waiting for him to make another startling revelation relating to the Sphinx, but he didn't. Seemed more like he started talking about golden angles and then just kept getting further and further off track until finally on the last couple pages he awkwardly recaps the whole book and then just ends it. I understand too though because with such a subject it can be difficult to not go off on a tangent (which he frequently does and then usually catches himself with a paragraph or two) and begin to describe how this symbol relates to this deity, and then how that deity relates to this, and this to that, and before you know it you don't remember where you were.

Despite this, I thoroughly enjoyed letting this author open up my mind to a subject I truly love. I just finished it today and have already ordered two of his other books. Thank you Robert Temple, I hope more "experts" in the field will be more open to different ideas in the future and perhaps try looking for evidence instead of just ignoring the obvious.
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