Shrine Updates, August 2017

So it’s been a bit of a quiet month, but that’s okay. There’s been a lot of prep work and putting things into place and sorting things out and trying some other things out, too. The last two days have been very Spring-like: warm and sunny and nice. I got into a bit of a cleaning mood, and have spent the time redoing my shrines, and my spaces, doing a little decluttering, and moving a few things around so they work better for me. I think I’ve also decided on at least one piece of fiction to include in the anthology, it will just need some work and editing and world-building first.

There’s a part of me that just wants to ramble on about the shrines, but honestly, I feel like I’ve written too much about them and I’d just be repeating myself. But I made some videos, so take a look at them, and I’ll ramble about them just a little.

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Ohhai, I made you some Kemetic Household Rituals

When the gods inspire, the gods inspire. While they’re very simple rituals, that’s what I intended them to be. My style when I create rituals is to write them in such a way that they can be reduced to a bottle of water, a bowl, and some images you’ve printed from the Internet, so you don’t need a lot of kit or space to do them. And, honestly, that feels like the right sort of approach for household rituals.

I have four rituals done:

It’s not meant to be the be-all and end-all of household practices, more like a place to start, so that there’s something to build on. In particular, I feel like Bes and Taweret need … something for Themselves. But I don’t know what or how often. If anyone has any ideas, please share them.

And if you’re just here for the rituals, you can skip the cut and click the links above. Do let me know how you get on with them, I’d love to know how you end up using them.

For everyone else, have some rambling about gods and why I wrote the rituals the way I did, in case anyone wants to see my working out.

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30 Days of Sobek: Day 6 – Other Related Deities

This is possibly a bit shorter than I’d have liked, but it’ll do. I’m going to post tomorrow’s now as well, because from next week, my Wednesdays are gonna get busy, so I might as well get Tues and Wed done at the same time. Then that’s one less thing to worry about.

I might actually expand this post at a later date, when I have more brain space to research this with more depth. I really don’t feel like I’ve done this bit justice, but hopefully, it’ll give you some idea of the gods associated with Sobek that aren’t family.

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30 Days of Sobek: Day 5 – Members of the Family

Sobek has a very small family, relative to other gods in the pantheon, I think. The only family – aside from consorts – Sobek has is Nit, His mother. This is the most common family given to Him. Whatever else He is, He is always son of Nit. You don’t really get one without the other.

His father is occasionally named as Set, or the more vague and unidentifable ‘Senwy’ (the two brothers) but more often his father is not mentioned. My own UPG from Nit is that She Herself is both father and mother to Sobek, that She did not need a father for Him to bring Sobek into the world.

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30 Days of Sobek: Day 4 – Myths about Sobek

As far as I’m aware, there are no surviving myths about Sobek, save for the Roman period Book of the Faiyum, which centred around Sobek-Ra and His journey through the sky. It’s very much Sobek-as-Ra in the Faiyum, and it is a fascinating text, from the snippets I’ve read about it. The book is as much a map of the Faiyum as it is a religious text. It has to explain the sun differently because it sits to the west of the Nile, and the sun rises and falls over the lake, not the Nile. So there’s some fascinating concepts and imagery that I would love to explore more deeply, including Nit as a hippopotamus, protecting Sobek as a crocodile on Her back.

But this is a hard text to study, simply because hardly anyone publishes any research on it (in an accessible-to-me way), and a full translation in English is nowhere to be found. So most of what I know about this text comes from a 51 page article by Horst Beinlich, which seems to have been part of a larger book I can’t find anywhere, that breaks down the text and describes each of the sections and what they contain. What’s in that article from 2013 is literally all I know, and all my google-fu can turn up.

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The shrines have settled in

Wesir all wrapped and ready for the Mysteries.

So I wrote a while back about changing the shrines around, but I didn’t want to post about them until they’d settled in. Sometimes, new shrine arrangements need time for me to tweak them, to make sure they are right. Big changes, too, are ones I feel I need to sit with, in case I decide to change them back. So I have given myself a week or so to tweak and sit and practice and figure out what I need to do to make them right, and I think I’m done, for the moment. Shrines always change, they never stay the same, so this is no more permanent than my other shrines. It’s just a reflection of where I am in my path right now.

I’ve also just got around to wrapping my statue of Wesir. It’s a bit later than I normally do it, given there’s only a week to go. But I noticed the lack of His presence once it was done. I do miss Him during this time, but it’s never permanent.

One thing I did achieve today was to go back through the Daybook and pick out all the Mysteries of Wesir-related festivals, and begin compiling something for that. I wanted a more complete picture than the eight-day one I’ve been working with, and going by the dates, I’m actually a few weeks early with mine if I schedule it on May 1, so that’ll be something to think about, whether I keep the May 1 start date, or keep the Kemetic dates instead.

I wouldn’t mind moving it so much. It would give me a bit of breathing space to do a more Hekate-focused May 1 High Day rite without it crashing into the Mysteries. Which is not necessarily a bad thing. I would appreciate that, since I wouldn’t need to try to do too many things at once. So that’s definitely on the cards, but nothing’s been decided yet.

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Daily and monthly rituals

I feel like I’ve spent the last two months thinking about this, but I think I’ve finally come to a workable schedule after giving myself permission to not worship ALL THE GODS AT ONCE you can do them at different times, please, self, do that. It’s still a bit tentative, and there’s deliberate flexibility and gaps in it just because sometimes, you need that. And I still haven’t got all the household rites done that I wanted to get done. But that’s okay. I’ve had Tiny Niece invading my life this month, and a very busy week, so you can imagine how much I desperately want my schedule back to normal. D:

The current plan is for Sobek and Heru in the morning, Masrai at noon (when I’m not at work), Hekate and/or household rites after dinner (I will handwave that as a convenient ‘Greeks start their days at sunset’ thing), and Constellation gods before bed (that’s Isis, Hekate, Renenutet, Mary, Quanyin, and Tara). I feel like that’s a workable flow that I can work with for the moment. I’m in the process of figuring out a monthly thing, just in terms of making sure everyone gets at least one day to themselves. None of these are going to be very long or complicated rites, either. But short and sweet means I get things done, so.

Because of this, I’ve also put my Constellation goddesses together on the altar table, rather than try to cram them onto the top of a bookshelf. It’s forced me to rearrange my shrines, and how I’m going to do the Mysteries of Wesir, but I’ll post photos of that once all that has settled down. At this stage, I really just need something for Tara, but that’s not an essential thing right now. I’ll leave that until I find one I like, and maybe print out something I can use until then. I want to let this altar settle for a while before I decide it’s done.

Di Wep Ronpet Nofret!

IDK, I was going to do my State of the Shrines update post today, because I finally redid the shrines yesterday, but I have made three drafts now, and changed the shrines up just as many times since then, so. I am taking this as a sign that I need to let things sit a while before I can show them off properly.

I will say, though, that the one thing I am doing is that I am stripping the shrines back to nothing. No tools, no candles, no incense, nothing. Just the gods. I’ve had this feeling lately that my shrines are just too full. There’s just too much stuff on them, and there’s stuff there I never use. The energy was just not right.

I always redo the shrines after Wep Ronpet anyway, so that wasn’t a problem. It did take me until yesterday to actually do that. This Wep Ronpet has had a weird energy. The Epagomenal days were weird, but I expect that. They are outside time, they’re meant to be weird. I also accidentally decided to just do my rituals for the gods on each of their birthdays, and not bother with my regular rituals. My rituals were ad-libbed, for the most part. I loosely – and lazily – followed the structure of my morning ritual, but only so far as anointing myself with oil, then offering a hymn, then water libations and finally anointing their faces with oil. Then there was meditation. I set my timer for 15 minutes, and started with two rounds of chanting using the lapis mala I made for Isis. The chants varied: Dua Wesir, Dua Heru, Dua Setekh; Ama Aset; Neh-beh-tet (slowly).

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Wep Ronpet Eve

Another year comes to a close, and to be honest, I’m looking forward to it. I’ve done my epagomenal days a bit different to how I normally do them. I have improv’d rituals, and then spent time in meditation, beginning with chanting twice around my mala, before going to meet Them.

It seemed to work very well for the most part, and I’m surprised about that, because Heru-Wer and Nebethet aren’t gods I am very familiar with, but both seemed to work out well. It’s nice to get to know Them, and Nebethet told me tonight that She liked the ritual I used, and that I should do it next year. So that’s promising.

Wesir, Aset, and Nebethet all gave me things this time round. Wesir gave me a long roll of papyrus and a pallet; while I was with Aset, I was given three snake wands; Nebethet gave me one of Her falcons (apparently She has falcons? IDK, I’ve never spoken to Her before) as a guide and companion. Heru-Wer and Set didn’t give me things, but we did talk a lot about the Contendings. Set also kept things short with me, and went off to do Night Boat duty. I watched it fly off into the horizon above me as the sunset grew deeper.

I’m not sure what I’ll do for Wep Ronpet tomorrow. I’m tempted to set the statues in the windowsill to greet the dawn, but as I’ll be off to work, and won’t have time to reset them until I get home, I think I’ll just leave them as they are and use the resetting the shrine as part of my celebrations. That, and I want to record my setup for this year before I take it down.

So, yeah, that’s how things are going for now. I might do something more detailed on the meditations when it’s not so late, and I don’t have to type on this crappy keyboard. Di Wep Ronpet Nofret for tomorrow! ❤

This is my Isis


So I want to talk about Isis, and this particular image of Isis, and why it means so much to me to own this statue at last. Because I finally had the money for it, and I finally found somewhere in Australia to buy it online from, and She arrived today, and I can’t tell you how happy I am to have Her at last. I have waited years for Her. And now She is finally here.

So you will forgive me if I get a bit tl;dr, and veer off into UPG territory, as well as whatever tangents are needed to explain all this fully, but I think it’s time I finally talked about this image, and why it is my Isis. Nothing has ever come close to being my Isis than this image of Her. It’s not traditional, it’s video game art, but this is what She means to me. When I think about Isis, this is who I see. Perhaps this isn’t the same for everyone else, but this is my Isis. Let me introduce you to Her.

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