The Bennu is an ancient Egyptian deity of the sun, creation, and rebirth. It is the inspiration for the phoenix in Greek mythology.
According to the ancient Egyptians Bennu is the self-created god who took the appearance of a Heron bird and flew over the waters of Nun before the creation of the universe. He settled upon the holiest place – the Benben stone. There he issued a call that determined the beginning of time and the nature of creation. This act enabled Atum – god of creation – to bring the universe into existence.
Bennu’s name produced the Egyptian verb; wbn, meaning “to rise in brilliance” or “to shine”. He is the heart and soul of the Ra – the sun god. Bennu also symbolises rebirth and empowers Osiris – the god of the afterlife, the underworld, and the dead – with his responsibilities of transition, resurrection, and regeneration.
The Egyptian Book of the Dead says Bennu is a guide to the deities, leading them home to tuat, the oasis of the gods.