“Religious to Excess”: The Ancient Egyptian Worldview of Polytheism and Piety

“They [the Egyptians] are religious to excess, beyond any nation in the world.”                                           –Herodotus, Histories, Vol. II (Euterpe): An Account of Egypt

The View from Postmodernity

What is it about ancient Egypt that captures our hearts and fascinates us through the millennia? Continue reading

The Great God Set, PSG 2015, and the Floodgates to Dissolution

“Apart from its beliefs about forms of disorder outside the cosmos, traditional polytheism almost requires tension and disorder within the pantheon and in the cosmos. Polytheism thus accepts two possible locations of evil, so that the existence of evil is not deeply problematic because nothing is truly perfect. All these points are well known from the religion of classical Greece, and they apply to mainstream Egyptian polytheism.” (John Baines, “Society, Morality, and Religious Practice.” In: Religion in Ancient Egypt: Gods, Myths, and Personal Practice, ed. Byron E. Shafer. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1991.)

I.

Let us pray:

“O Set, Son of Nut, great of strength,

‘Hope of All Hearts’ is Thy Name!

Protection is at the hands of Thy holiness.

I am Thy soul daughter.

The name of this day is Nakht-Ab—’Powerful of Heart.’

I will rise in Might to be like Thee! Dua Suti!

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A Ninefold Kemetic Worldview, in Honor of the Holy Ennead of Heliopolis

Circle Sanctuary’s 35th annual Pagan Spirit Gathering gets underway this weekend, and I’ll be presenting two Kemetic-themed workshops/leading group rituals there for the second consecutive year. In my preparations for one of the workshops, a Kemetic Reconstructionism 101 primer aimed at an adult audience of mostly eclectic Pagans and perhaps (hopefully!) a smattering of Reconstructionists from other traditions (Hellenismos and Heathenry, for the most part), I thought it would be useful to fully articulate not just what Kemetic Reconstructionism is, but what it most decidedly is not: Tameran Wicca, which, I suspect, many people in the audience will be coming from as a frame of reference. After delineating what strike me as the most crucial distinctions between the two Egyptian-oriented traditions, I devised what I’m calling a Ninefold Kemetic Worldview; it appears below.

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The Workshops I’ll Be Presenting at This Year’s Pagan Spirit Gathering (PSG)

And the people cried out: “Huzzah!” That’s right, the two workshops I submitted for this year’s Pagan Spirit Gathering, which takes place the week of June 14-21 this year at an Illinois location for the 5th consecutive time, have just been accepted! As with the Sekhmet and Nebet-Het workshops and rituals I led at last year’s PSG, my two workshops are the only ones representative of Kemetic polytheism. Given my “everday Egypt” hair and makeup that characterize my appearance–even in the midst of quasi-primitive camping conditions and the unpredictability of the elements (mission creep makes my campsite more of a glamper’s paradise with each passing PSG, and this will be my 5th time attending)–I’ll be easily recognizable in my gold-accented Middle Eastern attire and beaded headdresses in the sea of aging naked hippies that will be surrounding me. 😉 Continue reading

Sacred Crafts: Devotional Jewelry

One of the things I love to do in my spare time, especially during cold winter days when I’m feeling like a crafty domestic diva, is create ritual jewelry. I typically make necklaces out of various semiprecious gemstones beads, and these necklaces are anchored by a “statement piece” pendant. For the most part, I make these necklaces as gifts for people who are dear to me. I choose the gemstone beads carefully, thinking of the energetic properties each stone bears on its own and in combination with other stones and metals; the result is some sort of metaphysically themed piece of jewelry. Continue reading