BOOK REVIEW: Behutet: The Defeat of the Sebau — Part ii of the Behutet Trilogy
By Sh. NuAuMu Samga
Kazembe Bidiako’s second volume in his Behutet series, The Defeat of the Sebau, ferries the reader between slow-moving, detailed, developmental streams of consciousness and those that are tumultuous, chaotic and action-packed. In this 162-page urban Kamitic legend, Bediako seamlessly blends the Ancient teachings and history of Kamit (Ancient Egypt) with modern-day urban experiences and gives the reader a perspective of how to inject the Ancient Wisdom of our Kamitic ancestors, as a navigational tool, into our modern-day lives.
Ra Heru Khuti and Sethe, the main protagonists in the story, engage not only in the external battle against each other but also the internal personal battle - to learn how to cultivate and properly use the natal power of the spirit which we all have access to. Ra Heru Khuti is blessed not only with seasoned priests and companions who are initiated into a way of life that promotes preserving the welfare of all - including transgressors - but he is also blessed with access to a host of ancestors who support him in his battle to restore and maintain order within his own person and in the world. With Sheps Abaso as his war counselor — a female (in case you assumed that all war counselors are male :) — Ra Heru Khuti draws up a peace plan to win his battles against Sethe. He also acquires a clear vision of the future when he hears voices “bidding him to tell the sons and daughters of the great Mount Babalasaam, Luk Muk and Qumram of rites that shall walk the earth again in ancient names” — a return to the ancient way of life where peace as the foundation of life is established by “get[ting] my person out of the way … and announcing my victory over the inept emotions…”
But a true balance between the use of spiritual power and physical means is maintained in the battle scenes where Ra Heru Khuti has a cadre of those well skilled in the art of war — both male and female units, using a variety of weapons including sound. Led by Mangala Kum Ra, the Wordless Warriors use “certain precise sounds … to affect everything in the world. They do not carry weapons. They sit in meditation and chant, making sounds that affect things.”
Sethe’s battle plans parallel that which the modern reader is more familiar with — rule through fear and intimidation — conquer the enemy by instilling within your supporters, terror and fear of ‘the enemy’, and by setting up an “...artificial world…” of cities — “...with non stop action; pulsating neon lights, blaring music, and plastic people ...trafficking in every commodity known to man” … “conniving in suppressing valuable discoveries…that would allow people to discover the potential healing power within themselves” … because... “it could cripple the health [medical] and pharmaceutical industries” — so that those in leadership “can take advantage of the confusion.” The list of means to maintain power through intimidation, mistrust, and violence, and thus suppressing the awakening of the spiritual power of the masses is ad infinitum.
Bediako intersperses vivid scenarios displaying the workings of the Sethian power structure through the experiences of several characters, Hatti and Mnifa, Khatsaraim, Neru, Ras, Khetnu, Aqmeri, and Nephthys. How familiar are we, today, with scenarios of the utter confusion that engulfed Hatti’s entire neighborhood when friends and neighbors tried to restrain her drug-driven emotional response to the killing of her sons and her encounter with the police who after punching her in her face, shot her “all nine pellets … struck her at point-blank range, in the chest, killing her”? The rage exhibited by Neru and Ras which ended in the senseless deaths of both Khatsaraim and Ras display the Sethian world where emotion-driven action is the order of the day, the ‘natural’ response of the human. And the same story played out in the deaths of Monica and Nephthys whose stories depict the Sethian world filled with motherless and fatherless children left to be raised by aging grandparents — and a recipe for the multi-generational disintegration of the family. Aq Meri’s drunken encounter that erupts into a police car chase, and ends in the wreckage of several parked cars, an overturned ambulance and the explosion of a wrecked car leaking gas is the typical example of the chaos that can culminate from nights and days of indulging the sensual cravings fostered by the acceptance of the Sethian way of life — indulge in Sethe’s material pleasures and receive the rewards for your loyalty, intimidation, violence and psychological abuse.
Maintaining the driving theme of this book, Sethe’s pursuit to regain the Papyrus Am Tuat, Bediako, meticulously crafts, vivid sketches of the strategies of each battlefield general, guiding the reader through powerful visuals of the battle between Sethe’s “poorly trained and overconfident…” infantry and Ra Heru Khuti’s troops of ancestrally guided initiates, and the devoted Shemsut Auset, and Shemsu Heru.
Sethe’s attempt, before the battlefield victor is declared, to “call forth” his ancestor Mortimer Seth through the use of both words inscribed in the Papyrus Am Tuat and the technology produced by the scientists he had kidnapped, meets with dismal failure. He is unable to awaken “the seven thousand-year-old evil monster, Mortimer Sethe.” Compounding Sethe’s failure, his excursions on the battlefield result in “a disastrous defeat for Sethe but one of Ra Heru’s finest victories… which serves as evidence of the evolution “of the unbroken chain of ancestors that kept the wisdom alive and ensured victory on the battlefield.” Additionally, Ra Heru Khuti frees Ausara and regains possession of the Papyrus Am Tuat.
But … the story is not over yet, yes there is more to come ...for “Ra Heru Khuti raised his long sword to decapitate Seth when a bolt of lightning blasted his sword and out of nowhere several Ashemu appeared surrounding and restraining him. The Ashemu would not let him kill Seth. Ra Heru Khuti stepped back and submitted for he knew the awesome power of the Ashemu” and he did not want to transgress divine law.
Sethe will continue to pursue his desire to gain total control and power, by any means necessary and Ra Heru Khuti through his initiation into living by divine law will continue to fight Sethe and his confederacy to reestablish Ausar in the world.
To complete the series, you must read Behutet: The Destruction of Man - The Last Book of the Behutet Trilogy and discover the hero's path — learn to defeat the ‘children of impotent revolt’ and free your own life force of the negative effects of emotions. Realize your divinity and append the title ‘Ausar’ to your name!