The Meaning of King Tut: A Review of the Tutankhamun Exhibition from the Perspective of the Bicameral Theory

Julian Jaynes, Princeton Alumni Weekly, June 1979, 16-17.
Reprinted in University Magazine, 1979, 80, 12-13.
Reprinted in Marcel Kuijsten (ed.), Reflections on the Dawn of Consciousness (Julian Jaynes Society, 2006).

Excerpt: … These three figures show Tutankhamun in the middle with his ka in tow. Note that the ka is wearing the Osirian beard – only the king’s ka was an aspect of Osiris and could be so shown. The dead king is absorbing his ka and himself lovingly into the gently resisting figure of Osiris. This is what tradition with its absolute expectancies had decreed. And when it is said that each divine king in death becomes Osiris, this means according to the bicameral theory a merging of hallucinated voices into the bicameral mind of his successor. Hence the “Opening of the Mouth” by Ay of the Tutankhamun-Osiris mummy on the right of the mural. …