Eye of Horus – Ancient Egyptian Symbol
The Eye of Horus is an ancient Egyptian symbol of protection, royalty, health and sovereignty. It was a representation of the goddess wadjet, protector of Lower Egypt. The Wadjet or Ujat means `Whole One’ and is a powerful symbol of protection in ancient Egypt.
The symbol was often used in jewellery of gold, silver, wood, porcelain, lapis and carnelian for the purpose of safety and health of the bearer. It also provided wisdom and prosperity. It was also known as the Eye of Ra, a powerful destructive force which was connected with the fierce heat of the sun that was described as the `Daughter of Ra’.
The `eye was incarnate as the goddess Wadjet and linked with various other gods and goddesses. After the union of the two kingdoms she was the patron of Egypt and the eye was the symbol of royal power.
The eye of Horus symbol also tends to represent G-d within everything and the triangle surrounding the eye of Horus seems to be the symbol of creation. Inside the triangle, the composition of the eye of Horus represents the cosmic unity which cannot be grasped by the six senses though it exists in nature.
Right Eye – Sun/Left Eye - Moon
The image of the eye had been taken from the image of a falcon’s eye which was the symbol of Horus, the god of Sky as well as the rich fertile black land. According to mythology it is related that his right eye was the Sun and his left eye was the Moon which navigated the sky when he flew across it in the image of a falcon.
As per myth, his left eye had become pale moon when his nemesis the god Seth, had scratched his eye during one of their battles. He was restored and healed by Thoth, the god of knowledge and magic and hence the eye then became a symbol of protection, healing and magic.
It was at this point of time that the name Wadjet meaning `whole or healthy’ was given. In the myth it is stated that it is Horus left eye that had been torn out and relates the waxing and waning of the moon when the moon appeared to have been torn out of the sky before it was restored once every lunar month.
Healing & Protective Power
Various depictions of the restoration of the eye in Greco-Roam temples are available. Thoth has been assisted with fourteen goods inclusive of the gods of the Ennead of Hermopolis or thirty male deities.Each of the gods was represented by one of the fifteen days leading to the full moon and the waning moon and the restored eye was emblematic of the re-establishment of the order from chaos, associating it with the idea of Ma’at.
In one of the myth it is said that Horus had gifted the eye to Osiris in order to help him rule the netherworld wherein Osiris had eaten the eye and was restored back to life. Due to this, it became a symbol of life and resurrection.The eye of Horus is said to have healing and protective power and was used as a protective amulet.
Moreover it was also utilised as a system of measurement, especially in measuring the ingredients in medicines and pigments. The symbol is said to be divided into six sections, representing the shattering of the eye of Horus into six pieces where each piece was linked with one of the six senses and a certain fraction.