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Saturday, November 21, 2009

Phoenix Bird

Definition of Phoenix bird: In ancient Egyptian mythology and the myths derived from various other cultures, PHOENIX is a mythical sacred bird. It is said to live for 500 years. The phoenix bird symbolizes rebirth, fidelity and justice and has variants in European, Central American, Egyptian and Asian cultures. The phoenix bird is a male bird with beautiful red and golden plumage. At the end of its life-cycle the phoenix bird builds itself a nest of cinnamon twigs that it then ignites; both nest and bird burn fiercely and are reduced to ashes, from which a new, young PHOENIX arises. The new phoenix bird embalms the ashes of the old phoenix bird in an egg of MYRRH and deposits it in Heliopolis (The Greek city of Sun)� located in Egypt.

Although various descriptions of the phoenix bird are available, it became popular in early Christian art and literature as a symbol of the resurrection, of immortality and of life-after-death. The early Christians were convinced that the phoenix bird was a real living creature. Originally, the phoenix bird was identified by the Egyptian as a stork or heron-like bird called a BENU, Known from the Book of Dead as one the sacred symbols of worship closely associated with the Egyptian Sun god Ra.

Arabian Phoenix Bird
This variant of phoenix bird is the most popular. It is said to be as large as an eagle with brilliantly coloured plumage. The phoenix bird is the symbolic representation of the Death and rebirth of Sun. It lives on dew and kills nothing. Generally, it is also considered as the King of Birds.

Various other variants of the phoenix bird are Feng Huang (Chinese), Ho-oo (Japanese), Firebird (Russian), Benu (Egyptian) and Yell (Native American). According to the handbook of Chinese science of Feng Shui (written by Feng Shui master Lam Kam Chuan), phoenix bird is a mythical bird that never dies, the phoenix bird flies far away to the front, always scanning the landscape and distant space. It represents our capacity for vision, for collecting sensory information about our environment and the events unfolding within it. The phoenix bird, with its great beauty, creates intense excitement and deathless inspiration.

Britannica 1911 continues about the phoenix bird: ��.whence it is represented as self-generating and called the soul of Ra (the Sun), the heart of the renewed sun. All the mystic symbolism of the morning sun, especially in connection with the doctrine of the future life, could thus be transferred to Benu, and the language of the hymns in which the Egyptians praised the luminary of the dawn as he drew wear from Arabia, delighting the gods with his fragrance and rising from the sinking flames of the morning glow, was enough to suggest most of traits materialized in the classical picture of the phoenix bird.

The phoenix bird was famed for being symbol of the rise of fall of society in Ray Bradbury�s Fahrenheit 451. The pattern of an over complacent and abusive society�s destruction yielding a fresh new start was compared to the phoenix bird mythological pattern of consumption by flames, then resurrection by ashes. More recently, J.K.Rowling�s Harry Potter novels feature a phoenix bird, named Fawkes. He is Dumbledore�s pet. (Dumbledore� Patronus is also a phoenix bird). The life-span of this bird is unknown, although it is approximately 500 years. In Harry Potter�s world, phoenix birds can carry large weights and their tears have extraordinarily healing powers.

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