Red Isis

Isiopolis

Oregon's Painted Hills Oregon’s Painted Hills

I’ve just come back from the Red Land.

Not in Egypt, but in eastern Oregon. That’s my Red Land; just over the mountains from Portland.

The eastern Oregon desert is starkly impressive dressed in its iron-rust reds, dry-grass golds, basalt blacks, and pale, dusty sagebrush and juniper greens. And the Painted Hills! O my Goddess, beautiful, beautiful.

In honor of the Red Lands then, let us dive into the color red, its symbolism in ancient Egypt, and its relationship with Isis.

A modern rendition of fiery, red-headed Set A modern rendition of fiery, red-headed Set

The ancient Egyptians had an interesting relationship with the color red, in Egyptian, desher. It was considered very powerful—in both a bad way and in a good way. The bad way connected red with danger, anger, and of course, the non-life-sustaining desert or desheret. (As you can see, our word for “desert” comes from ancient Egyptian desheret.) Red was…

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