I recently had a conversation with a friend of mine concerning the nature of deific masks, specifically the mask of Set in Egyptian mythology.
Here is an excerpt from the conversation:
It starts with a quote concerning the deific mask of the ancient Egyptian deity Set in relation to the Kia concept as coined by Peter J. Carroll in Liber Null/Psychonaut.
John (name altered) The Black Flame concept in the Temple of Set seems to be similar to Kia of Liber Null/Psychonaut. Kudos to Aquino for a clever way how to make Set different from all other gods – he is a giver of the Black Flame, i.e. giver of source of consciousness, perception and will. Giver of the source through which we created all other gods. I personally do not see any god to be “more prominent” or completely different then others, but it is a clever mental trick how to elevate Set.
Here follows my response:
Very interesting observation concerning the similarity of the Kia and the Black Flame.
As for “making Set different”, I think that is a misperception. I will explain why.
a) Every deity is different from any other deity, including deities that are exceptionally similar across various pantheons. For instance: Set is not the equivalent of Odin, or Tezcatlipoca, Satan, or any other deific mask, although all could be viewed as reflections of the “Prince of Darkness” mask in various differing cultures.
b) Set is the Neter of Isolate Intelligence, meaning he is a subtle gateway to the pure Platonic form of “Isolate Intelligence” but not the form itself, as this form cannot be directly apprehended (as in Plato’s theory of Forms). The Neteru represent the principles which sustain the objective part of the cosmos (Think of the elements, time, justice and so forth). Set is the only Neter that represents a force outside of the natural cosmos (which in your personal reality reflects the difference between objective and subjective reality), and is hence considered non-natural. This is not a principle developed by Aquino, it is something pretty obvious when you observe natural order and the existence of sentience and the effect this sentience has. The ancient Egyptian Priesthoods recognized this, hence why Set is the only Neter represented by an animal that cannot be found in nature. There have been comparisons, but no animal 100% percent resembles the humanly translated symbol Set takes in Egyptian mythology.
A good modern illustration of this is the movie “2001: A Space Odyssey.” The Monolith represents a device that is transferring the isolate intelligence principle into simple
c) A more simple model for the understanding of Aquino’s approach is the Vedantic model of the cosmos, which is essentially made up of three great divisions. There is a gross realm corresponding to material reality, there is a subtle realm which in Western Occultism may be equated with something like the “astral level” and there is a causal level which roughly corresponds to the causal realm of Platonism. I.e. the realm made up of the Platonic first principles.
d) Following on from the above points, you could not apprehend other Gods without “Set”, or to be more precise, you could not apprehend nature without the principle of isolate intelligence (for which Set is a deific mask) inherent in yourself as a human. This is why the deific mask Set, could mythologically be interpreted to be “the God that created the Gods” or rather “the God that perpetually creates the Gods“, moment to moment.. Hence even if the objective realm, which is according to the Platonic theory derived from and sustained by the pure forms or Neteru exists objectively (which Aquino recognizes) – you would be no more capable to apprehend or even conceptualize it without intellect, the ability to separate yourself from the objective realm on a subjective level in order to cognize it.