Creation began here, which is why we built the first temple here, a mansion for Amun. Because everything flowed from this place it’s the fulcrum, and our offerings to Amun are levers, to keep in balance the power that lies behind all things.
The southern sanctuary at Luxor is where pharaohs were crowned and rejuvenated. It was dedicated to Mut, the consort of Amun. Each year a statue of Amun was paraded to Luxor so that Amun and Mut could rejuvenate the kingship.
For the Egyptians, the form, the images, and the symbols of a god were the god. A god is the magic inherent in natural forces and is identical to its representations. Therefore, the rituals of the temples were to wash and dress the graven image, to anoint it with oil and paint, and to offer it food, of which it would consume only the essence, leaving the body of the meal to be eaten by the priests.
Temples cut into rock define the spaces between the walls and around the statutes. Four colossal statues of Ramesses the Great, seated, flank the doorway. Above their heads a frieze of twenty-two baboons worship the rising sun. You pass through the entrance into the hypostyle hall, supported by eight Osirid pillars and surrounded by battle scenes, then the pillared hall showing offerings to the gods. This hall accesses the transverse vestibule and the entrance to the sanctuary. The sanctuary features four seated figures: Ra-Horakhty, the deity of the sun, Ramesses, the deified pharoah, Amun Ra, the creator, and Ptah, the deity of craftsmen and architects. We’re glad that the people who built this place got themselves divine recognition.