By Ifueko Ogbomo @inspirologos
The world of ancient Egypt was remarkable indeed. Small wonder it has inspired stories and movies time and again. Who can ever forget watching Cleopatra or The Ten Commandments? That world has intrigued storytellers for centuries, and I am no exception. Hence, the imaginative setting for my fiction debut, A Divine Romance. While researching the cities, deities, traditions, and fashions of this ancient civilization, I found many fascinating facts, including that ancient Egyptian children under age six didn’t wear any clothing (only accessories such as bracelets and the usekh—broad collar made from precious stones). I discovered that, like their young male counterparts, daughters of their nobility were also afforded a stellar education. Being born and raised in an African nation and a patriarchal society, in which there are to date tribes and religions that consider the schooling of the girl-child to be wholly unnecessary, I found this ancient Egyptian educational fact both surprising and refreshing. In this, and many aspects, ancient Egyptians were admirably ahead of their time. It was, therefore, an absolute delight to make my main character, a sun-kissed daughter of Egyptian nobility, not only beautiful, but intellectual, highly educated, and a lover of literature and languages.
Discovering ancient Egyptian names and their meanings was also intriguing, and I applied this knowledge to the deliberate assigning of interpretive character names to those characters of my biblical fiction tale not already named in scripture, e.g. naming a mother-figure Na’eemah, which means Mother, and a character with a hawk-like appearance, Akhom, which means Falcon. Many other fun facts that I discovered in my research appear in the illustrated Reader’s Guide that opens the novel, strategically located such that a reader is already immersed in the ancient world before beginning this female-empowering historical romance inspired by the life of Joseph.
The fact that ancient Egypt’s polytheistic culture revered both gods and goddesses is another testament to their appreciation for the female gender. I imagine the only thing that exceeded the number of their gods and goddesses was the number of their Pharaohs’ wives! 🙂 In researching the plethora of deities, I read a most shocking tale of a feat undertaken by the goddess Isis out of love for her brother-turned-husband, Osiris, which involved rather hair-raising facts including brutal sibling dismemberment, posthumous impregnation and a resurrection! (I’ll let you research that tale for yourself!) As incredible as Isis’ love-inspired sacrifice was, it pales in comparison to that inspired by the greatest love of all: the unconditional love of divinity for humanity, as demonstrated on Golgotha’s hill, on a good Friday, thousands of years ago. Ultimately, that unconditional, unrelenting, undying love a perfect God has for imperfect people is what drives the ancient Egyptian love story that unfolds in A Divine Romance.Ultimately, that unconditional, unrelenting, undying love a perfect God has for imperfect people is what drives the ancient Egyptian love story that unfolds in A Divine Romance. @inspirologos Click To Tweet
I love LOVE—I’m insatiable for Happily Ever Afters. This Good Friday, my sentimental heart is once again warmed by one thought: the only living God loved you and I so much, he embraced death that we may enjoy life eternally. Whenever I am deeply moved, I express myself using my love language. Being born and raised in Northern Nigeria to parents from two different southern tribes resulted in my hearing English as the first of multiple languages. I speak English fluently, and Hausa fairly, but I daresay the language I speak most passionately is poetry. While I remain gratefully amazed by all of my God-given creative talents, my love language is the one for which I am most grateful. It afforded me the honor of becoming a prize-winning poet, a celebrated immigrant to the US, classified as an ‘Alien of Extraordinary Ability in the Arts,’ and best of all, it allowed me repeatedly, to give voice to voiceless victims of various kinds, on global stages in spoken word and song. My absolute favorite of such performances is not the one that earned me Presidential commendation, but the one that was birthed from my understanding of, and appreciation for, what transpired long ago, on resurrection weekend. Thus, I leave you with that poetic performance, aptly titled, The Highest Price Love Ever Paid.
Blessings on blessings,
Ifueko Ogbomo (alias ‘Lady InspiroLogos’)
Ifueko Fex Ogbomo is a prize-winning poet, performing artist, author, and sickle cell activist whose life’s mission is InspiroLogos – ‘to inspire with words.’ For her internationally acclaimed work in the performing arts, she was awarded US permanent residency (2017). Founder of InspiroLogos Publishing, she enjoys sharing the gospel through spoken word and storytelling. Visit Ifueko on her website at www.ifuekoogbomo.com.
Wonderful Article! 🙂