Johnathan Cott
Warner Books, 1987

This astonishing book chronicles the life of Dorothy Eady as she lives what must certainly be one of the most interesting lives on record. Born in England in 1904 she knows early on that she is not the same as other children around her. A blow to the head seems to awaken memories of a previous life which propel her in a new direction. She feels she is not English but rather "belongs somewhere else." Strange recollections, nightmares, and other happenings become her standard lot in life; several times her parents commit her for short periods, each time the doctors can find nothing physically wrong with her. A fascinated young Dorothy watches the aerial battles of World War I and avoids certain death in an air raid by not doing what others do. She feels she has found home when she wanders through the British Museum's Egyptian section and sees the face of an old friend in a mummy. She then befriends Dr. Budge (who translated the Egyptian Book of the Dead) who teaches her hieroglyphics and the ways of archaeology.

As a young lady she marries an Egyptian gentleman whom she later divorces, "remaining good friends." One day she realizes her deepest wish when she is sent to Abydos on an archaeological dig, and once there she vows never to leave Egypt again. Her mastery of hieroglyphics and hidden meanings give her deep insights into ancient Egyptian texts, making her much in demand among prominent archaeologists. She lives the rest of her life in relative simplicity and poverty doing what she loves best—crawling around ancient monuments, revealing their true meanings and living her life by the ancient Egyptian principles as she understands and recalls them. But the most fascinating secret she saves for a very few close friends: in this life and in a previous life she is the consort of King Seti! So as not to ruin the story, nor deprive you of the interesting way it's told I will leave it at that.

Besides telling an utterly fascinating story this book also gives an excellent sense of what it's like to live a completely authentic life, the life of one's dreams grounded in reality. Omm Sety lives as she wants to live despite external pressures from society, poverty and several other "forces" which many of us find overpowering. Her charm and simplicity cannot help to touch your soul while her story fascinates your mind. Of all the books on Egypt I've read, only this one and Initiation by Elizabeth Haich leave you with the sense of what life was like in ancient Egypt. If that were all this book did it would be well worth the read, but there's much more here. A story about temple life, written by Omm Sety, is included in an appendix. Several long discourses on the person and her life by close friends bring Omm Sety back to life right before your eyes. A scholarly discussion of her work and life is also included, rounding out the image and providing a bit of grounded, rational thought. The author mentions a short BBC movie made in 1980, Omm Sety and Her Egypt, in which Omm Sety herself appears in her favorite temples. I have not seen this film but would very much recommend it to anyone who might be fortunate to have the chance to see it. (And please tell me where I might find a copy!)

This book is often touted as "proof" of reincarnation but as Omm Sety herself said, that's not the point, nor can reincarnation be proven through her experiences. Only in one's own experience does real knowing occur. In the end, you must decide what to make of this fantastic life and how the principles shown in this book can be applied in your own existence.

Be warned: The Search for Omm Sety is currently out of print but is readily available through used book dealers. And don't pay $55 for a copy (as I recently saw quoted); many dealers sell it for close to what I recently paid for one in good shape—$6.

Reviewed by Mike Hammer

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