Naraka is structured with levels of agony where spirits begin, and their early lessons, while they are still vessels of perversion and loathing, are learned from suffering and torture. Harsh though it may seem, souls are forged in this environment. They learn to be humble but deserving spirits with every battle and merit earned. Each life is also a choice whether to go forward as a more purified spirit or stay in the bowels of Naraka spewing and hissing self-hatred, never to acquire affection for others who are grappling to likewise survive.
To do this, there must be an understanding of the difference between self and community, love of one’s own and love of the world. Eight attempts are granted; some advance with fewer tries, and others wallow in narcissistic behavior that represses any hope of an existence beyond torment and punishment.
A small newly formed black mist swirled around Narakasura sidling for his attention. He let it mingle with the other Danavas before singling it out. “Come with me. Where should I involve you? You seem eager enough.”
The trifling black veil shrunk with fear at the gruff voice of the terrifying entity and fused again with the others. Narakasura filtered it out and forced it to stand on its own. The little bit of film was enchanting, a sense not often felt by him. There was something distinctive about it. He would send it to earth as a human to test out its potential and send along two others who were new.
Although Narakasura delighted when the blackness prevailed, his actual role was to process potential souls that might assist in the progression of the Creator’s designs. As the Yin to the Creator’s Yang, he did his part. The black veil was separate from the light energy of the Creator, but every existence had its purpose, and after receiving free will it was up to each of them which path they chose to follow.
A great growl heaved from him, and the three black mists found themselves on hold in an atmosphere wanton of love or warmth. Their spirits had been formed and were waiting for a body to inhabit. Instructions were not given. Nothing begets nothing, and they were new to experiences of any kind, so they indeed were nothing, and imperiled by the evil acts of human nature.
The soul that had mesmerized Narakasura was first to be born in Mesopotamia. It was born a boy and into a family of foul, selfish people. He was not wanted as he was the eighth child born into this family. “It’s another boy, Anatu! What will you name him?”
Anatu looked at her newborn son with disgust. “I don’t care… just another mouth to feed. Name him what you will. He will probably die before his second year, so why does it matter?”
The handmaiden took the baby away from his mother’s sight and saddened by the mother’s indifference, named him Opis, a name that means plenty. The child had a loving demeanor. As he played at the feet of a caregiver, a puppy wandered over to him. She cuddled next to him and from that time on, never left his side. But as Opis grew, he experienced abuse of every kind. He was smaller than his brothers, so he was bullied and forced to do their commands. The only solace Opis had was his little dog, named Chaldees who loved him unconditionally and stayed by him until she died. That bit of unconditional love was rooted in the soul of Opis and the lifeforce that was Chaldees evolved to human status and appeared in Opis’s future. Chaldees’ essence was Opis’s future source of comfort.
Poor and with no love for their children, Opis’s parents considered them burdens, born from the pleasure of their loins with no desire to care for its fruit. The children were misused and beaten every day. Since there was no one to shield Opis from the hatred in his world that modest, unique light within him died.
After a brush with death at the hands of his father, Opis fled his family in his thirteenth year. He became a brick maker, and met an orphaned girl named Lil. They met at a place where food could be gotten for those without. She had no one but Opis and clung to him despite his abusive nature. After a few years, they married and had twin sons, Alam and Aloros – the two spirits who waited with Opis in the atmosphere of holding.
Opis’s character was twisted from the torment and abuse experienced in his upbringing, and having never experienced anything before this incarnation, he imitated what little he knew. He developed a quick temper and a heavy hand. If something displeased him, it was second nature for him to hurt anything near him. During their third year, Opis’s temper had grown mean and cruel. He flew into a fit of rage at Lil for not making his dinner the way he liked it. Lil had a small frame and was frail from malnutrition. Opis shook her with such force that he broke her neck and killed her.
During this time in Mesopotamia, poor wives were underlings to do with as men liked. Lil had no one to stand up for her therefore, Opis was not held accountable. It happened often to others who were poor and unseen by society – a sting that would guide future lives.
Ill equipped to raise twin boys by himself, his unprovoked anger swelled more often than not, mirroring the hateful example of his own parents. The boys were shuttled from neighbor woman to neighbor woman to keep them safe until they were old enough to fend for themselves. Then, they became Opis’s worry, and he only knew cruelty and nothing of nurturing love.
A night of drunkenness was always a night of terror for the twins. To mollify the profound aching pain entrenched in Opis’s soul, they could depend on verbal insults, belittling, and physical abuse. This was all to appease Opis’s torment and rage. Their lives were miserable.
Alam and Aloris had reached the age of twelve and were done being mistreated by their father. They fashioned tree limbs into clubs to arm themselves. On what would be the last night for them all, the boys heard Opis’s drunken, boisterous voice as he came closer to home. He staggered into the mud brick hut. Alam and Aloris came out of the shadows and struck him as hard as they could with the clubs. Their aggression only served to intensify Opis’s fury. Triggered by the assault, he grew into an uncontrollable brute whose strength tripled. The boys thought they had experienced all of their father’s anger, but Opis gathered his past pain and rolled it into a giant ball of rage. He became the monster that he was groomed to be and beat the boys with their own clubs.
Alam was the first to succumb with a crippling blow to the head. Aloris hung from his father’s neck and tried to decrease his power, but Opis’s wrath could not be contained, and he turned it on Aloris. Opis flung him to the floor and beat him without mercy until Aloris’s life was done.
Neighbors overheard the boys’ screams and the violent acts of the bullish man they had grown to hate. They charged into the hut, contained his violent rage, and dragged Opis to the Tigris river where they bound him and drowned him. It was not in accordance with the Code of Hammurabi, but the neighbors, who watched the daily abuse of the twins, deemed it a necessary death as it was a sentence appropriate for the murder of a man’s own sons.
Three black mists were sucked back to Naraka, where Narakasura was waiting. The Mahāyāna, or ability to grow through wicked behavior in past lifetimes, was presented to all three spirits. They were given names from the tribe to which they were to become a part. Opis was named Tau and cast as a female spirit from then on. He had taken the life of a woman and to become a part of Narakasura’s Yin which was feminine in nature he had to live through similar cruelty. In lifetimes ruled by Naraka, Tau would experience the dismissive and disrespectful attitude Opis showed his wife and children. Tau’s ultimate challenge was to grow despite the groanings of foul beliefs about women. She had to become a strong and loving female entity.
Alam and Aloris were given the names of Eta and Mu and cast as male spirits to perfect the male aura to be nobler and more than just brawn and control. They were to use that strength to better the world and soften it to experience love in many forms. In the end their challenges were to grow to fruition during the earth’s great adaptation to agape. They were to preach the importance of love’s broad uses.
Raziel looked on, hating every moment of the Mahāyāna. He never was one to cozy up to ceremonies conducted in Naraka, because more often than not, the black mists chose to stay under Narakasura’s dominion. Completely dedicated to wickedness, these black spirits were all about the ruination of the Creator’s plan while the shimmering light energies worked toward final triumph. He did have compassion for those who learned the required lessons and advanced from black mist to be born again of stardust. Being too close to Naraka and Narakasura unsettled Raziel. His mission was to keep everything running in a timely fashion, and Narakasura did everything to prevent that from happening. They were indeed obstructions to each other’s purpose.
“Tau, come here!” The raspy voice of Narakasura summoned the frightened wisp of black. Not yet permitted a voice, the fragment of haze floated toward him. “You will become female in this next incarnation. There is a trial waiting for you. It requires a decision that will spin your future lives, and your allegiance. Do you understand?”
The veil of black encircled Narakasura, lending an affirmative response to his question. He waved the filmy cloud to the side.
“Eta, you are next.” Eta floated over to the king of Naraka. “You are to take the role of tempter. Again you return as a male, and you are required to find depth in the role of a man. This is more difficult than you think. Many challenges face you and your decisions affect your future lives.” Narakasura pointed to Eta to join Tau.
“Mu, come here.” Mu’s mist was patchy and frightened. It hesitated until Narakasura beckoned and gathered the essence together and forced it over to him. “You can’t be afraid to enter the world, my friend. These are tests that evolve your character into an exact entity with definition and purpose. Mu, you will again return as a male. In this form you must endeavor to find ways besides brute force to persuade others to do your bidding. As with Tau and Eta, your decisions in this upcoming life determine your future path.”
The Mahāyāna was complete. Narakasura swept his energy through the shaking wisps, breathed a great breath and Tau, Eta, and Mu were thrust into the holding area.
Tau was the first to be born to a young Nubian couple. A beautiful child, she was a delight to her parents. They named her Heba, which means a gift from God. During this time of love and acceptance the original flicker of light, lost when Tau inhabited Opis, returned to her spirit. But her exposure to unconditional love was blocked when her village was conquered by the Egyptians and she was taken at age twelve, as a prisoner and enslaved. It was her inner light that drew princess Nefertari, a daughter of Ramses III, to Heba when she was looking for a handmaiden. She became indispensable to her mistress and put Heba in the perfect position to carry out this incarnation’s destiny.
Exposed to other slaves, some who were deceitful and without morals, and with Heba growing more beautiful every year, she was taught to use her charm and attractiveness to steal from wealthy men. She split the ill gained money and jewelry with her comrades and as she grew, developed a greedy nature that increased when she used her body for profit.
“Heba, we must speak.” Ketti, a young man who was captured with Heba from their home village, and who held the spirit of Mu, needed her help. Heba did not understand her willingness to always help him, but he touched her soul.
“What, Ketti?” Heba had grown proud and knew the power of her beauty.
“Are you interested in making a bounty of money?”
“Always. What do you have in mind?”
“There is a plot to kill the Pharoah.”
“No… no, not this girl… no.”
“Please, Heba. We need someone to help us manage the plan from inside the Palace.” Ketti was in love with Heba. Her loveliness had always mesmerized him.
Knowing this, Heba gracefully caressed Ketti’s face with her hands. “What’s in it for me? This is very dangerous.”
“Partial control of the grain storage. Ramses has lost sight of these resources and has left it up to others to oversee. His wife, Tiye, wants Ramses gone so that her son can assume the throne and has no interest in the grain.”
“This is an ambitious enterprise. Who are you dealing with? Can they be trusted?” Heba was aware that the finances of Egypt were in disarray and that it was a prime time to take advantage of the situation.
“Tiye’s handmaiden. She has seen this opportunity and needs help to take benefit from it.”
Heba laughed with disbelief. “The Warrior King cannot be that stupid. And the plot is too devious for a handmaiden. Everyone knows he wants his son Ramses IV to assume the throne after his death.”
“Yes, but Pentaweret, Tiye’s son is the rightful heir to the throne. Tiye has many officials on her side to rectify this matter. Many are from the Pharoah’s harem. You could easily blend in as if a part of them.”
“So, this plot is Tiye’s, not her handmaiden?”
“Yes, but those of us involved do not let that be known… to protect her.”
“Why can’t one of the women from the harem do what you are asking?”
“They are watched by the Pharoah’s guards. You could seduce a guard away long enough for someone from the inside to infiltrate the Pharoah’s chambers.”
“Which guard manages the harem?” If Heba was going to do this, she needed to start the flirtation and seduction beforehand.
“A man that goes by Anpu. You know him?”
“I do know him. He is very handsome. This will be an easy proposition.” Heba smiled to herself realizing her luck. Anpu had been in pursuit of her for a long time.
So it was decided that Heba would seduce the guard away from his station long enough for a few from the harem to enter the Pharoah’s chambers. Poison was to be slipped into Ramses’ wine.
In her time as servant to Nefertari, Heba had become friends with the high priestess Sanura, of the temple of the goddess Isis. When she was new to slavery, she went there often to sit and think about her family and how she lost and missed them. Sanura saw her and was curious about this young girl who came to the temple almost every day. They became friends and when Heba felt unsure of something, she would talk it over with Sanura.
After her discussion with Ketti, Heba needed to gather her thoughts and went to the temple.
“Heba, how are you today?” Sanura approached her young friend.
“Sanura, have you ever had second thoughts about an agreement you made?”
“Yes, quite often.” Sanura laughed.
“This is serious. I may have just set myself up to be killed.”
“What is this agreement, Heba?”
Heba whispered, “You must keep this to yourself. Do you promise?”
“Yes, yes… I promise. What was the agreement?”
Heba took Sanura to a corner of the temple. “I might have agreed to help with a plot to kill the Pharoah.”
“By the power of Isis, Heba, what were you thinking? If you are found out, you will be put to death in a horrible manner. But, more importantly, it is deceitful and wrong. Your suffering in the afterlife will be worse than death. You must find a way to correct your intentions. You must abandon this plan and find favor again with the gods by doing something good.” Sanura was horrified.
“What can I do?” Heba froze in terror for what she had done.
“Go and pray to Isis to send you a way to counter your wickedness.”
Sanura had never talked to Heba that way before. She recognized the terrible decision she had made and decided not to show for the meeting with Ketti and Anpu.
Leaving the temple, Heba trembled and was upset by what Sanura had told her about the afterlife. That afternoon, it was customary for those seeking forgiveness to give food and comfort to the Israelite slaves. Perhaps by doing something good and charitable, she might be forgiven her wicked thoughts.
Loaded with food and coin, she wove her way through the starving, exhausted crowds handing them sustenance and hope. She was approached by one of their leaders. “I know you. You are a handmaiden to the Princess, Nefertari. Why are you here among the Pharoah’s slaves?”
“I don’t have to answer your questions.” Heba was startled because she was recognized.
“I’m sorry. I did not mean to frighten you. My name is Aaron, brother to Moses. Have you heard of him?”
“Of course. He has caused the Pharoah many problems. Why are you speaking to me?” Heba was paranoid since her murderous decision.
“You are seeking absolution for something?” Aaron asked with compassion.
Heba looked into Aaron’s eyes and saw salvation. “What if I am?”
“I have been told that the princess Nefertari has a secret path that leads to a road out of Goshen, and that no one but her and her slaves know of its existence. Moses wants to lead God’s children out of Egypt. You could help us leave these pitiful conditions if you just tell me where it is.” Heba looked at Aaron with suspicion. “I’m taking a great risk in asking you this.” Aaron was trepidatious as he glanced over his shoulder.
“I could have you arrested for even approaching me. How do you know that I won’t summon the royal guard?”
“My God leads me. He alone directs my actions. I feel no fear of you because He also knows you. This is your destiny.”
Heba’s heart was touched by Aaron’s faith. She fell to her knees in tears. “Does… does He truly know me?”
“He does and He loves you, too. He tells me that you will help us because it is written in your life script that you will.”
“Come. I will give you the directions.”
With the information given to him by Heba, Aaron told Moses, and the Israelites found their way out of Goshen without interference, and the Pharoah was relieved to be rid of him.
But even with Heba’s change of heart came a penance for her evil thoughts. Her betrayal was found out as another of Nefertari’s slaves saw her speaking with Aaron and reported it to the Princess. Heba was whipped, tortured, and through it all she was disfigured for her crime against the Pharoah, leaving her with nothing, not even her looks to help her. She lived the rest of her life in forced slavery. When she died, she died in agony at the hands of her Egyptian master.
Heba’s suffering on earth, and her change of heart cleansed Tau’s spirit, so there was no need for her to suffer in Naraka. It catapulted Tau to Svarga into a more advanced state of being and her soul burst into lightning bolts and shooting atoms that erupted to form a star. From there she had more knowledge of the Creator and the angels. She was granted spirit guides and guardian angels to help her achieve each life’s mission. The torment and misery experienced on earth refined her path. Tau was now on her way to becoming a purified soul. This was her beginning.
Ketti and Anpu’s betrayal was discovered, too, and they were made to suffer for the rest of their lives as mine slaves. It was hard work in an unforgiving environment. Because of this, Eta and Mu remained in a state of anger and aggression. Their spirits went back to Naraka and stayed under the guidance of Narakasura for many lifetimes. It would take the kindness of a sister spirit to support them, but that would not come for some time.