The Bronze Mirror

By J Michaud PhD

The true story of a past-life in ancient Egypt recalled through psychometry

This short story was originally published in the now defunct magazine, the Occult Observer, Vol. 1 No.4, in 1950. It reveals how even everyday objects retain a psychic impression of all the events and conditions which they witnessed, confirming the occult truth that the astral light is the mirror that retains and reflects all that occurs on earth.

An atmosphere of strange tension pervaded the famous rooms of Messrs. Christie in London on that remarkable day in the nineteen-thirties when a great collection of Egyptian antiquities was being offered for sale (see note).

Buyers from all countries thronged the room. There were French, German, Belgian and American dealers, armed with commissions from rich clients, and many private collectors who hoped to capture treasures on their own account. Among the latter was the relater of this entirely true story, and by his side sat the Queen of a far-away country, without whose presence such events were unthinkable at any time.

Behind our chairs (although we were not aware of this at first) stood the young King Farouk of Egypt with his retinue; for, having arrived rather late, no seats were available for them, and, moreover, no one was aware of the identity of these important personages, not even the auctioneer, as later on he told me. Just how important they were will be seen presently.

The bidding was keen, and one longed-for item after another was knocked down to the same buyer, whose purse seemed inexhaustible; but it was impossible to catch his name, which the auctioneer mumbled in an undertone.

There were magnificent golden scarabs, Ushabties in the most glorious of blues, drinking vessels of beautifully coloured glass, small busts of the royal ones, papyrus rolls, statues of the gods and one of Tutankhamen, heavy gold rings with hieroglyphic inscriptions; one of these rings had belonged to me once upon a time, and I wanted it very badly, but the bidding for it went so high that it was beyond my means, and escaped me to become the prize of the same mysterious buyer.

And so the ancient gods fell under the merciless hammer: the baboon and ibis gods, the lion and Bubastis' cats; the bulls of Heliopolis and Memphis; the rams of Thebes and Mendes; the hawks of Hierakonpolis and Coptos, and the holy serpents, crocodiles, and jackal-headed Anubis: they all stood one by one upon the trays of the assistants, to disappear again after the gavels final knock; going, going, gone . . . Yet present in the minds of the bidders, some of whom must have come from the land of Khem after many incarnations, who all, but one, bid now in vain. And Knumun, the Creator, must have smiled in his beard, and Bast of Bubastis could be heard purring—almost—with secret pleasure. And all the while the excitement grew, and the air was thick with a feeling as if all the ever-living Gods of Egypt were present here, and rejoiced.

Then there was a pause; the persistent bidder halted for a while, and some of the other visitors captured a few items, and one of these was a fine bronze mirror of ancient Egypt, complete with the original handle, and perfectly preserved in every way, though covered with a thick coat of green patina.

And it was I who captured that mirror, which I coveted even more than the golden ring I missed before, though it cost me more than even now I care to contemplate; yet was the price below the value of that which happened afterwards.

After the sale I learned that the mysterious buyer of all the priceless items was King Farouk, and that all these treasures would be taken back to Egypt, their land of origin, and this was eminently right in every way, and the gods were satisfied.

So the Queen and I went home with our one and only purchase, and we had no idea at all of the effect this mirror would have on me in a few hours time.

The Mirror-Door into the Past

Feeling rather tired after all the excitement, I decided to lie down on a divan when we arrived home again, and, naturally, I took the mirror with me to examine it more carefully. And then the thought came that I should try to psychometrise this mirror, and I held it to my forehead for a few seconds, and it was as if I fell asleep and had a strange dream.

I was looking through a window with small panes, and found myself in the midst of a miscellaneous collection of pieces of porcelain, jewellery, miniatures, and suchlike trifles. But none of these interested me, for the window was that of a small shop in a square, and opposite the window I could see the entrance of a great church, the doors of which were open, for a great many people were on their way to some religious service, I could see them plainly as they went into the church, and I wondered at their quaint dresses of another age, perhaps some two hundred years ago. And I could hear their voices, and they spoke in the French of the 18th century.

And as I watched them, and listened to their words, admiring their beautiful costumes, so different from the hideous ones of today, the scene faded away, and an old gentleman was holding me in his hand as it seemed, and examined me in the same way as I had examined the bronze mirror when I was lying down on the divan some centuries before; for we were now still further back in time, at least two hundred years or so. But he seemed pleased with me, just as I had been pleased with the mirror once, long ago. I do not know who he was, nor in which country he resided, but I have the impression that he was an Italian, for he had that appearance.

And then I was suddenly transported to a town full of sunshine, with great crowds passing to and fro in the market place, chattering in an unknown tongue as they passed along the porticoes and colonnades, and they were dressed in the most extraordinary attire, such as I had never seen before.

I was lying on a carpet amongst old Greek pottery, damascened swords, daggers, small marble statues, mostly damaged, and there were patera for libations, wine jugs and amphoras, hand lamps, Bacchanalian vases, and many similar things. In the distance I could see a kind of white marble temple, though it was mostly in ruins, on the top of a hill. And I wondered if this were Athens, and if that temple was the Parthenon or the Erectheum upon the Acropolis, the greatest of Ionic temples; for to this extent my mind had blended with the records of the travels of that mirror that I no longer knew who I was.

But again the scene faded out, and I was now half buried in warm sand, and strong wind was blowing, and the air was hot. I could not see much, but suddenly a fearsome beast appeared and was almost on the point of stepping on me when a hoarse and guttural voice shouted a command, and the monster stood still, and then knelt down in sections as it were, with much grunting and grumbling; and a man in a white burnoose stepped off its hump and picked me up.

In the Days of Ancient Egypt

How long I had been lying there I do not know, but it was as if I had awakened from a long sleep in which I dreamed that I was in a dark place for many centuries. A place filled with spicy odours, though the eternal silence was almost unbearable to me, who had been used to a life among happy, smiling people, while soft hands held me aloft sometimes, looking at me with tender, kindly eyes. Such were the memories that kept me company during those long ages of utter darkness.

But one day that darkness was disturbed with heavy knocks and blows, and anon a villainous-looking individual appeared out of the gloom, now lit by burning rushes dipped in oil. And I was snatched up rudely and thrown upon a heap of other things, and with dismay I had a glimpse of a painted mask upon the head of a shrouded figure which had slept in peace within a casket of sculptured alabaster; and the casket was full of golden ornaments and jewelled necklaces of fine design, and there were many rings and bracelets. And the face upon the mask was that of one I greatly loved, never forgotten, who had loved me in return, and loves me still.

Then the darkness came again, and I went back in time to the villa in the garden where once I had dwelt before; a place where all was beautiful, where songs and laughter, the sounds of harps and flutes and other instruments of music, made glad the hours of eve.

At that fortunate time I lived in a large and lofty room, filled with airy light, beautifully furnished with gold-covered chairs and other furniture on which pictures were painted in rich enamels, depicting in living colours a great Goddess, whose feathery wings spread out to give protection to all who came within the circle of her presence.

Outside the room, through lofty windows, one could see a veranda, and beyond that a lovely garden with small pavilions among the trees; not so far away there stood the great Pyramid, covered with a glittering surface of highly polished reddish granite, though it was broken in the centre, and only gave protection to the upper half of that House of Initiation.

During the daytime a distant sun-glitter lay upon the haze of heat within the pleasant air where Hapi, which is the Nile, swam upon its way serene towards the sea.

The peristyle court and hypostyle hall were the abode of paintings of the Great Ones who dwell in Heaven, and they were portrayed by artists whose genius brought them to life. At certain days, the holy priests came from the temple to bless the noble house and all who dwelt therein. The great God Shu, the Ruler of Space, shed benedictions in answer to the prayers and the praise ascending to his fair domain.

And at night the Zodiacal light, called Sopdu, shone in the jewelled sky whose indigo was studded with stars like living suns, so great they were, and fine with gold and red and blue and all the other tints and hues. O happy land and glorious skies!

But the most delightful part of my existence consisted in the presence of her with the radiant, smiling face, with the soft and kindly eyes as I saw her adorned with jewels, dressed in colourful materials and pleated, gauzy skirt. She was so lovely; a very Queen in person and in fact indeed.

And as, in memory, I was within that room, lo! she entered, and I beheld her countenance, and my heart went out to her when she spoke to me rather anxiously saying: 'Are you all right?'

Then there came a dazzling light, and a sensation of swirling mists, and it was as if I travelled through the air at fearful speed; it became dark, and behold, I opened mine eyes and found myself upon the divan, the mirror still clutched in my hand, and the Queen stood over me, saying: 'Do you know you have been fast asleep for over two hours? I was beginning to wonder if you were not feeling well.'


If you have enjoyed this story you may also like The Rhododendrons—another short story by
J Michaud PhD which reveals why Nature is the greatest Book of Wisdom ever written.


© Copyright J Michaud PhD &
Article added 14 August 2015. Updated 14 March 2023.

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