Awakening Osiris: The Spiritual Keys
to the Egyptian Book of the Dead
by Normandi Ellis
Publisher: New Page Books
Publication: June 2023
“…The Egyptian Book of the Dead is one of the oldest and greatest classics of Western spirituality. With Awakening Osiris, Ellis has transformed the ancient stories told through hieroglyphs for modern readers and approaches the Book of the Dead as a profound spiritual text capable of speaking to us today. These writings suggest that the divine realm and the human realm are not altogether separate; they remind us that the natural world—the substance of our lives—is fashioned from the stuff of the gods… ” ¹
I have had the privilege of reading many of Normandi Ellis’ books over the years and Awakening Osiris: The Spiritual Keys to the Egyptian Book of the Dead is by far one of my favorites. This updated edition includes the Original Introduction and a new Introduction, giving the reader a measure of comparison in knowing what has been added and why. A Concordance is very useful in plotting out the sections of the book and explanation and derivation of source for the hieroglyphs contained within the chapters.
Ms. Ellis has a way about her writing that immediately draws the reader in, regardless of the complexity of the information given. She also has a depth of knowledge, both intuitively and academically derived about Ancient Egypt that few can match in the completeness of its story telling and information.
The Appendix is a treasure trove of recommendations for awakening The Book of the Dead within your storehouse of memory with ritual, hymns, the power of the name and even a suggestion of changing the names of the sections within the Table of Contents (Book of the Dead) to be reflective of your understanding of its meaning. The Bibliography that follows is very succinct in those titles of reference that will not over weigh the explorer in the labyrinth of Egyptian practices and academics. Accessible and Understanding are the keywords that are the directive of Awakening Osiris: The Spiritual Keys to the Egyptian Book of the Dead.
Unlike many books of the category, Awakening Osiris: The Spiritual Keys to the Egyptian Book of the Dead does not go about providing yet another sterile interpretation of the Book of the Dead. It does, true to its title, provide the landscape to be explored by the reader in re-imagining the connections between life, death and the after-life of the ancient Egyptian. This is a very important distinction to be made in selecting this title over the volumes upon volumes of literal translation of one of the most important books within the ancient Egyptian culture.
Additionally, the reader is directed that…
…The appearance of chapters in Awakening Osiris, as in any other book of the afterlife, is a bit random. It is less important for the chapters to appear in a narrative sequence… I arranged the book according to how each individual piece resonated with the chapter before and after. I treated them… as a poem in and of itself… ²
This approach speaks volumes to the author’s understanding of the workings of the ancient Egyptians and the ordered flow of their cosmology and spirituality, respective to each being part of a larger whole and not to be separated and taken out of an organic stream of wisdom and knowledge. Ms. Ellis makes use of several papyri to complete the flow of this work using the more familiar Ani, as well as the papyri of Nekhet and Nebseni.
Would I Recommend:
Awakening Osiris: The Spiritual Keys to the Egyptian Book of the Dead by Normandi Ellis is a book of opening and informing the reader of the continuance of essence, soul and energy beyond the physical constraints of life. The writing is deeper than the appearance of some very short paragraphs and/or chapters; it is deceptively deep in what is written between the words. This is the spiritual great work of deciphering and “filling in the blanks” as they align with your understanding at any given point in time.
And, to that point, I found myself taking each chapter and using it as a tool of contemplation; lending itself beautifully to sinking into the over-arching energy of what was written and presented on the surface the multiple layers of meaning to be extracted. This new edition of Awakening Osiris: The Spiritual Keys to the Egyptian Book of the Dead is exactly what is needed now and is our call to the reminder that we are part of a cosmic lineage that hovers between life and death and as the ages turn all comes back once again to its source, much of which is held in the wisdom of the Ancient Egyptian afterlife. We are fortunate in this lifetime to have one such as Ms. Ellis who is intimately connected to that wisdom and is able to translate its mysteries into modern practice.
… The ancient scribes worked on writing and copying the Books of the Afterlife for their clients, who were illiterate but had very spiritual beliefs and needs. Like these ancient scribes, I will show you ways of using Awakening Osiris as a template for creating your own Book of Coming into the Light… ³
2. Pg. xxv
3. Pg. 177
About the Author:
Normandi Ellis is an award-winning writer, workshop facilitator, and archpriestess of the Fellowship of Isis. She leads tours to Egypt and is the author and coauthor of several books, including Hieroglyphic Words of Power, The Union of Isis and Thoth, and Imagining the World into Existence. She lives in Franklin County, Kentucky.
About the Author:
Robin Fennelly is an Elder within The Assembly of the Sacred Wheel Tradition and serves as High Priestess of Coven of the Mystic Path, the 12th Coven within the Assembly of the Sacred Wheel Tradition. She teaches and facilitates classes for the Pagan Experience Study Group that serves as foundation for membership within Coven of the Mystic Path.
Her spiritual journey is strongly rooted in both Eastern philosophy and the Western Magickal systems from which she has formed a core foundation that is diverse in knowledge and rich in spiritual practice. A life-long learner, her practice has evolved from the classical and philosophical teachings of books, practical experience and enrichment of this knowledge base by attending workshops of various spiritual traditions presented by master teachers.
Robin formally came to the Wiccan path in 1994. Following a practice as a solitary for 2 years, she dedicated to Oak and Willow Coven of The Assembly of the Sacred Wheel Tradition in November of 1996. She received her 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th (Elder) degrees within the Assembly Tradition and has served as High Priestess of two ASW covens since Samhain of 2001 and the Winter Solstice of 2015.
As a teacher of esoteric and magickal studies she uses Energetic Anatomy, Tarot, Astrology, Hermetic Qabala, Eastern Philosophy, and Numerology as the foundations of her diverse selection of workshops and writings for more than 25 years. Exploration of varied energetic protocol has been the focus of her work for some time now and the information gained through direct experience informs all of her magickal and spiritual work.
Robin’s writings have been featured online, and in print Internationally. She has authored several books incorporating her unique style of writing making use of poetry, prose and pathworking to enhance the concepts presented. She has taught extensively throughout the Pagan community, including Sacred Space Conference, Spring Magick, Between the Worlds Interfaith Conference and Free Spirit Gathering Festival. Her most recent projects include a channel on youtube: A Journey to the Inner Chamber. She also shares audio pathworkings and ritual on her bandcamp site: Teachings on the Path with Robin.
Robin is the owner of Holistic Embrace providing services for mind, body and spirit such as Tarot readings, Astrology reports, Spiritual Guidance and other related offerings. She lives in Eastern Pennsylvania and her life is blessed by a 40+- year marriage, five children and the opportunity to work in the field of public education.
Her books can be found on Amazon or purchased directly through her website:
For more info: http://www.robinfennelly.com/books.html
The Inner Chamber, Vol. 1 It’s Written in the Stars-Astrology
The Inner Chamber, Vol. 2 Poetry of the Spheres-Qabalah
The Inner Chamber, Vol. 3 Awakening the Paths-Qabalah
The Light of SELF: Consciousness, Spiritual Practice and Learning to
Magickal Verse: A Collection of Poetry and Prose
A Year of Gaia: The Eternal Cord
The Elemental Year: Aligning the Elements of SELF
Temple of the Sun and Moon: Luminous Devotions
Sleeping with the Goddess: Nights of Devotion
A Weekly Reflection: Musings for the Year
The Magickal Pen: A Collection of Esoteric Writings
The Enchanted Gate: Musings on the Magick of the Natural World
The Temple of the Sun: An Astrological Solar Year
Writings in the Shadow: An Exploration of the Shadow Nature