Qxiote~Aten

               “Fourth Child of the Sun”

 

The Child of the Sun

   

 

 

 

Authors note....

          A short distance from the riverbank, violent screams poured through the slats of a simple bark covered dwelling.   Several minutes ago, intense pains had begun in the belly of young Souchi, a Teqoias woman of the Maize clan and she began to moan.  Across the peaceful river, a soft purple glow was just becoming evident.

As a sliver of sunlight appeared across the river, warm water trickled out and then rushed from Souchi’s loins…. “A river of life will flow out from you,” she remembered Manatoya, the Midwife & Healer arrogantly predicting Souchi's firstborn's arrival, while visiting just over a week ago....  “You can expect it right after the next full Moon.”

  1231BC in what is now Laredo Texas-Nuevo Laredo Mexico on the western bank of the Rio Grand.

Qxiote, the fourth "Child of the Sun" is being born moments after sunrise on the day of the summer solstice.

     

But the Moon had been new last night, barely visible, and the water was already flowing from the young woman’s body.  Souchi knew that the child inside her had decided for itself that now was the time to be born.  This independent baby girl wasn’t going to listen to the predictions of some medicine woman or healer or anyone else for that matter.  Every mother thinks each of her children are special, but Souchi knew her first born child was planning to be unlike any other!

~

   
     

Young Souchi and her anxious husband Payati, a river fisherman, lived in the northern outskirts of the tranquil Teqoias village.  The couple had collected traditional Birth Stones in preparation for their child’s birth, believing that the stones held close to the body in a chamois pouch, guided a newborns life.  Remembering well her own grandmother’s importance in the tribe, Souchi also dreamt often about what her baby might look like, and the part the child might play in tribal society.

Souchi was certain she bore a girl and planned to name her Nataki after her own mother.  That, like collecting Birth Stones, was another Teqoias custom.  The name Nataki meant ‘Flowing Water’ and her own mother had literally been born on a raft while her family was crossing another great river, one that we now call the Mississippi.  That had been while the ancestors were searching for their new homeland and temple site.  In her certainty Souchi had not even chosen a male name.  In her pain and confusion however, she had completely forgotten that back in the village, today was the tribe’s most important annual festival day.

~

  "Stones" were actual stones, pieces of bone, shells or wood, etc.  They were collected from the wild, or a particularly good stone would be given as a gift to you or your parents.
     

        Predictably, the light increased outside.  The purple glow on the horizon became a deep red and slowly morphed into a warm golden yellow.  The pale grey mist hovering over the water brightened and began to dissipate, exposing on the riverbank the figure of an old man with his palms raised above his head, pointing directly towards the glow across the river.

        The young woman’s agony increased as her baby was about to be born.  From the direction of the glow, the Sun came quickly, as if searching for its new child.  The sun’s golden fingers raced through the leaves of the beech trees, lighting the roof’s of the dwellings, erasing the mist and exposing the face of the old man.  

        Aten, the god of Egypt and the Teqoias tribe respected only one first born Sun Child, and when the reigning “Child's” spirit had left the Earth and returned to the Sun, the Aten sun god himself came on this first day of summer to choose another. 

        In moments, the hands of Aten were at Souchi’s dwelling and reached through the slats, warmly touching her belly just as the child was beginning to appear.

Souchi, who was not at all religious herself, was however, as every woman is, in total awe of the experience of new life.  She had given no thought about nor attempted to give birth at this most important time of year, reverently called the Day of the Sun by the majority of people in her tribe.  The child, it seemed had different ideas, however.

 

The Day of the Sun

        The Day of the Sun came once each year and there was an important festival associated with it.  It was what we today call the Summer Solstice , the first day of summer, falling on June 21st in our calendar.  It is the day of the year when the sun reaches its highest point in the sky and is visible for the longest part of the day.  In every human society, past and present, there has been a significance assigned to this day.  In Teqoias society for example, on the Day of the Sun, the Aten sun came searching for the child born first after the sunrise.  That is, as was the case now, if the previous Sun Child had passed away and returned to the sun.

        The child chosen would become the Child of the Sun to the Teqoias people and remain in that honored position for life.  Gender, race or social status was not important in the selection, only the time of birth after the suns appearance on the sacred day.

   

The Summer Solstice is on June 21, when the sun is at its highest point in the sky.

     

Nearby, on the riverbank, the increased excitement of the birds as the full fiery disk of the morning Sun broke away from the horizon was enough to tell the old man that the Sun had arrived, just where he expected it to.  He kept the pink palms of his wrinkled brown hands facing the glowing disk, and after feeling the warmth of his god, he bowed once with his hands reaching out and his fingers pointing toward the sun.  He could no longer see the sun with his eyes, yet he still worshipped the god it represented daily after feeling it touch his hands.

   
     

        While young and able to see, this Old Blind One had been a type of monk, living alone by the river.  Preaching, praying and devoutly bowing forty times daily to the all powerful Aten.  He would recite the name of an original Egyptian Daughter of Aten with each reverent bow and then meditate silently about her for several moments.  Then he would repeat the process with another Daughter’s name.

   
     

        Souchi’s grandmother, Teritti, was an original ancestor, sailing from Egypt on the Phoenician ship, the Blue Pearl, but she was not one of the original Forty Daughters.  The forty Daughters of Aten had been the personal handmaidens of Queen Nefertiti, the chief wife of Egypt’s King Akhenaton who was himself, The First Son of Aten and founder of the cult.

        The Blind One still prayed daily, now bowing just once, letting the birds see the sun and speak the names of the Daughters for him as they sang their songs.  Souchi and Payati visited him frequently to be sure he was well, bringing fish, bread and vegetables for him to eat.

   
     

            At that precise moment, as the birds became agitated, and the old man bowed slowly and the light of the Sun danced on the calm surface of the Great River, Souchi’s child was born.  She was pristine and beautiful, and Souchi’s husband wrapped the baby tightly in a fur blanket and brought her outside to show her to the world.  Exposing her face, Payati held the child high above his head for the Aten Sun, the father of all children, to accept and caress with his warm hands.  Then he closed his eyes and spoke in an ancient language that only the Sun understood, the traditional blessing given to all children.  “Uchae, Achae, Contae, Mastae.”  Then he looked back at the baby and spoke in his own tongue “Behold your father, the Aten, Nataki my child.”

 
     
   

Continued....

   

 

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Qxiote Aten, Fourth Child of the Sun

Copyright 2003 by D. McDaniel Hayden

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Except that the chapter portion included herein, from The Child of the Sun, entitled "Qxiote Aten….Fourth Child of the Sun" may be freely copied electronically or mechanically  and distributed, so long as this copyright page, and the Web address www.LightoftheMorning.com is included along with said copy.

 

The names Qxiote, Huxel, Manna, Teritti, Manatoya, Teqoias, and others used in this book are fictitious and created by the author.  The names of Aten, Akhenaton, Nefertiti and Amarna are actual people, places and things from ancient Egypt.