I had one of those moments today where everything suddenly fell into place. I’ve been trying for a long time to figure out the whole Kemetic calendar into my year as I experience it, and it’s been tough. Three seasons doesn’t really translate well to mine, and I stopped trying to do that a long time ago.
I still can’t explain why I feel a need to have such a seasonally relevant calendar for a Kemetic, based on my land here, but it’s a driving force for me, and I finally feel like I’ve sorted it out at long last, in a way that’s relevant to me, if not to anyone else.
I’ve been playing around with Sobek/West and Heru/East associations, as well as Their significance for me at Solstices and Equinoxes, along with Wesir and Ra. Wesir and Ra are like equinoxes for me; Sobek and Heru are the solstices. I honestly had no idea why this association made any sense to me for a while; these events weren’t really significant in the old calendars, with perhaps the exception of the winter solstice, but they seemed, to me, to be the seasonally instinctive way to divide up my year.
I mentioned a while ago that I was starting the Seasons of the Seeker program with Anni, and I wanted to do the course because I wanted it to help bring me closer to understanding my land, and how to bring it into my practices. I’d got to that point where I just didn’t think I could puzzle that out on my own, and she was offering the framework to help me do that.
We’ve started the part of the course that’s focussing on elemental balancing right now. I’ve never been very focussed on the elements as a Pagan, but when I started the course, I decided I was going to be open to all these different perspectives, and re-evaluate whether they work for me or not. I doubt I’d ever go back to Wicca, because it’s not the religion for me, but I know I never really gave it enough time back when I was just starting out. I have a better appreciation of it now than I used to.
So, today, I’ve been journalling about the elements and how I perceive their connection to The Divine/the gods/etc. And, IDK, as I was listening to the video, and thinking about what I might write, things began to slot into place. I’d always associated Sobek with Water, and Heru with Air; Wesir with Earth, and Ra with Fire. And in puzzling those connections out with the seasons, and with their connections to cycles, and to each other, it suddenly all made sense.
Here be the mandatory caveats: this is all UPG, only relates to me, make of it what you will, no Judgey McJudgerson, this is just what makes sense to me, I’m a polytheist who rullytrully experiences actualfax gods as separate entities. Just in case anyone – still! – thinks I might be talking about anything Srsly Authentic And True And Totally Legit For Everyone Ever. Which I’m not. (I wish one day I didn’t need to make these disclaimers all over the place, but. *sighs*)
I think it’s my Pokémon brain that decided on secondary types? But you try playing Pokémon for more than half your life and try not to equate elements with Pokémon elemental types. So sue me. It makes more sense than not, so I use it.
I think it’s also because I was thinking how Sobek is water, but He can also be that first mound of land. Heru can be swift wind, but also bright sun. Wesir is the cool earth, and the autumn winds. Ra is the hot sun, but I associate Him with water based on His creator aspects, and that myth where His tears create humanity. It’s that idea of contrast, of … I hesitate to call them ‘dualities’, because I feel it implies more of a ‘binary’ state of affairs than I’m comfortable implying. *smashes the binary*
It’s like, Rock types are weak against Water, but strong against Flying. (You throw rocks at birds. That’s how I remember it. XD) (Also, my poor Graveler didn’t like walking by the seashore. Poor Graveler. He hates water.) And Flying is strong against Grass and Fighting, but weak to Electricity. And so on, and so it goes. /to borrow a Pokémon analogy.
Not that I’m trying to compare gods and Pokémon, though that’s still a post I need to make, regarding my philosophical musings about how you sometimes get trainers who focus on one type, or only have one Pokémon, and then you get others who have two or three Pokémon, or those who have 4, 5 or 6. Somehow, my brain saw it as a weird sort of way of talking about people and their gods and such, but I could never quite get my initial post to make logical sense without lots of handwaving. Maybe I’ll have another go at it.
It’s more, Sobek is Water/earth, Heru is Air/fire, Wesir is Earth/air, and Ra is Fire/water. It makes a weird cycle thing. IDK. I’ll go write in (some of) what I wrote in my journal for you so you’ve got a better sense of what I’m talking about, and how I relate them to the seasons and the elements and such in my part of the world.
Sobek is Water. He is the Nile, the rain, water that flows, gives life, and nourishes crops. He is Earth as well, as He is Tatanen as much as the Nile. Seasonally, He is winter. He is the rain and storms we get that bring the gardens to life. Yes, there is danger in the storms, but our gardens get the most water in winter, as our winters are wet and cool. Water is most prominent in winter, and so is Sobek’s fertile presence, seen in His life-bringing waters. He brings Wesir’s potential to life. Sobek ‘makes the seed productive’, to quote something Wesir said to me a while ago.
Ra is spring, Fire and Water. After winter, the weather begins to warm up, and after equinox, the days become longer. We get spring rain as well, and having warm days and cool, wet days is what makes our spring. Things grow here too, but as summer looms into view, it gets harder. The rains become less frequent, and the days get warmer. Ra heralds the coming heat of summer, along with the spring rains.
Heru-sa-Aset has always been very Air-like to me. Air and Fire, and the heat of summer. I feel Him most as the wind, as a falcon screeching through the air, soaring high above the ground. That’s how I see Heru. Heru is summer, and He is summer because He is the hot easterlies that mark our summer. Sobek brings the cooler westerlies across the sea, to bring relief from the heat. But Heru mostly bring the hot winds, and the flames. Heat comes, and things die. Summer is peak bushfire season, as well. Fire heats, and fire destroys, and because Straya!*, fire also brings life. (*Australia.) (No, srsly, it’s a Thing. We have a heap of native species that need fire to germinate.) I also like the imagery of Heru, of Aset and Nebthet, being the breath that brings Wesir life. Wind is not just hot and horrid, it also gives life.
Wesir is Earth and Air, and the retreating coolness of autumn. Wesir’s always felt very earthy to me, and He has plenty of associations with that. The black land from which the crops grow. I connect Him with the scorched earth from summer, where death has come to the land, and the potential life is still being incubated, waiting for the winter rains to bring it to life. The exchange of gasses that enable life to exist on this planet, the breath of life, and the winds, all find themselves in Air. The cool air that heralds the winter to come once the march equinox is gone, and the days become shorter. There is a noticeable chill in the air, when you can finally say that summer is gone. There’s a similar feeling when the first hint of summer returns. You can feel it in the air. And getting that first hint of the scent of rain, even if it doesn’t come. It’s why I have the Mysteries in autumn. It’s Wesir’s time.
And of course, when Sobek brings the rains, the seeds grow, and the cycle continues.
It was just one of those moments where everything suddenly made sense. I could finally connect my gods to my landscape to my seasons and feel like it was right, that there wasn’t anything out of place. It makes sense of my four seasons, but still has enough of a connection to Kemetic concepts and such that I don’t feel like it’s a forced connection. Knowing the cycle of the year at last makes things easier for me now, and I can begin to connect better with those energies, and bring my landscape and seasons into my practice. This is only a first step in that process, but an important one, and it gives me a structure to work with. More as I work with this stuff.