Hibernation

It’s nearly time for the Spring Equinox, and I feel like I might finally be coming up for air. Or, at least, emerging from the dark time. It’s been a very deep and introspective time. Not quite a Fallow Time, but more … introverted. Lots of internal stuff going on, as well as being busy with things in the mundane world. Trying and failing to write things, trying and failing to find a job, trying not to go mad and smash things because politics, the usual. It makes for a strange disconnect, sometimes, when I try to reconcile the normality of life, with all the other spiritual stuff. A lot’s happened, and I’m alright. It’s still been a weird winter, but it’s time to re-emerge, and I’ve felt that urge to write again, and re-engage with the world.

So, er, bear with me, if this post gets a little long, and rambly. I will probably need more posts to go into things in more detail, if necessary, but this is what’s on my mind at the moment. I hope this all comes out coherently. It’s still a little muddled in my head.

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Bookbinding, Isis, and Hekate

So, I’ve started making books, because Sobek said a scribe ought to know how to make books. Right now, I’m just concentrating on hardcover coptic stitch journals, but I’ll likely tackle case binding eventually when I am not so intimidated by it.

This is the first one I made; it’s since become my new ritual book, for my monthly festivals at least. I’ve made another A4 sized one with watercolour paper that I plan to use as a devotional art journal, and another A5 one for notes and other things. I’m planning to make a bunch of 4inx4in ones as presents for our midwinter feast next month. Everything’s been cut out, it all just needs to be assembled. I’m also going to get dad to help me put together a book press, and Sobek wants hieroglyphs on it, so. Part of my scribal kit, it seems.

I’m planning to get myself organised enough to sell them, because with coptic stitch, the books lie flat, which makes them good for ritual books if you want them to sit flat on a table or shrine. Plus, I think it suits Kemetic ritual books well since I believe it originated in Egypt with the Copts? I get a big sense of recognition and pleasure from Sobek when I make these books, as if it’s something He recognises and takes pleasure in seeing brought to life again. It may not have been an ancient practice used in the old temples, but He seems to really like it nonetheless. It’s always good when your gods like your work, I think.

Relating to this, Sobek’s also been throwing ‘lector priest’ things at me, seeing it as the other side of a scribe’s duty when serving in the House of Life of a temple. I think He’s emphasising it more in a sense of a context in which I’m doing rituals to Them, rather than as a role He wants me to take. It may be that this is ultimately why I’m not tending open statues, because I don’t have a high priest to tend to it. It’s not part of my duties. I just read (and write) the rituals. (If the gods see fit to change this, that’s Their decision.) It reminds me that I ought to get my hands on that book about priests in ancient Egypt when I have some spare money.

(Also, knowing how to do bookbinding will enable me to refill my current BoS/journal because it has a reusable leather cover omg, which was half the reason I bought it. The damn text block in there currently is even coptic bound. I mean, really. I will never need to buy another journal ever again.)

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Hekate and runes

I feel like I’ve been doing a lot of things, and not paying enough attention to writing it all up. The Covenant of Hekate have had this month-long daily devotional thing going since the beginning of the month, which I thought I’d do, since the focus was on improving meditation and visualisation skills. And it’s been good, if intense. I don’t mind a bit of visualisation here and there, particularly since Sobek finally told me how to do it in a way that would be effective for me, but it’s quite trying on my brain to do it every day, and I will admit to skipping a couple of days, or just doing the breathing meditation instead, because I haven’t felt up to the visualisation. Since I need to do some visualisation work for Sobek tonight, it’s breathing again for Hekate. I don’t have the spoons to do visualisation work on a constant basis, but at least I figured that out sooner rather than later.

The visualisations have been quite productive though. Lots of tarot imagery, and some runes as well. Artemis showed up as well, in connection with Yr, but there you go. That was hardly surprising, to be honest, since the rune is signifying the bow. It did make me want to take up archery though, which I’ve wanted to do since I was a kid. I have always loved archery. I blame Disney’s Robin Hood movie. That is burned into my memory from since I was a child. I spent a lot of time as a kid making bows from sticks and lacky bands, and making arrows out of whatever I could find. I dunno how good I’d be at archery, since I have shitty eyesight and all, but I guess I won’t know unless I try.

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Feast of Sobek

Today’s a feast day for Sobek, and I was lucky enough to be able to spend some time alone in ritual with Him. It did catch me somewhat off-guard, but Sobek provided inspiration enough as to what I ought to offer for Him to feast on, and it was good to spend that time with Him together. It was nearly an hour and a half, all up, and while I won’t share the details of what happened because Mysteries, I did finally nut out what it is about visualisation that I have never quite grokked.

Y’know what the problem is? It’s the lack of words. I can do visualisation just fine when I’m writing a story in my head, but I’ve never thought of it as visualisation because it never really felt like it, or how other people do it, anyway. But that works for me. Writing a story in my head, in a form of second person, that works. I can see things that way. I can feel things that way. But I can’t if I’m just meant to be ~imagining~ things. So I’m going to try the visualisation thing again that’s part of Hekate’s new moon rite and try writing it as a story, and see if that helps it work better for me. If it does, I’ll keep working on honing that skill, and maybe I won’t be quite as shit at visualisation as I thought I was, because I can just write a story in my head, and see things that way.

All this triggered by a story I was writing for Sobek in my head as He took me to His temple at Bakhu again. A poem thing did come of it, but it’s not for sharing, so it’ll go on the private blog instead. I’ve also set up a small shrine for Nit at His insistence. There’s work there to do with Hir. Weird gender stuff. IDK. Maybe I’ll talk about it later once I’ve parsed it into something coherent and feel like it’s shareable.

(This is also me trying to get more consistent at writing up rituals and festivals that I do in a bid to have a better record of them, and to update this blog more often. We’ll see how long I stick with this before I forget.)

 

Myth-Writing and Other Things

I swear, I am done reorganising the pages on this blog for now. There’s lots more to add, but the basic set-up is there now, so all I need to do is slowly add the things that are missing.

I’ve got a section now for my religious practices. For rites and heka and calendars and whatever else I think fits in there. It’s pretty basic, at the moment. All it has is the general ‘fill in the blanks’ Kemetic rite, my morning and evening Graeco-Kemetic rites, and the Sobek execration ritual. I also plan to put calendars up there, Kemetic ones based on my fixed one, with versions for both northern and southern hemispheres. If I get around to putting basic festival tradition information together, it’ll probably go there too.

I’ve also put up a section now for devotional writings. Prayers, hymns, and adorations are going in there, as well as any myths and stories I write. Nit just gave me Hir version of the birth of Sobek, so that’s just gone up there for your reading pleasure. (Even if I did feel like Sie was lecturing me – and everyone else who might read it – as I was writing it. >_>) I wanted to write this one mostly because I haven’t found one in the ancient records, and, well, I felt it was needed. I feel Sie got a bit ‘Lady of the Stars’ on me as well. IDK why. o.O

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Sobek Research and Other Ramblings

I was doing a bit of googling last night, looking for any ancient Sobek hymns that might possibly if I’m lucky actually exist that I can base a litany around. I didn’t find any hymns, but I did find a couple of articles that talked about His Graeco-Roman cult, particularly around the Faiyyum region, as well as one article talking about Sobek, Ra, and Wesir. I even found an actualfax book on Sobek and the Faiyyum, though sadly I can’t find a copy to buy that is definitely in English rather than in Italian, and not going to cost me a lot of money I don’t have right now. (I found three for sale: one for £68 (~AU$103), one for US$150 (~AU$142), and another for US$200 (~AU$189). Sans how much I’d have to pay for shipping. *cries* I would probably buy it if I had the money, though. Just because omg an actualfax book all about Sobek omg I must have it!) I can’t even find it in any university libraries here, so I can’t even go and borrow it. 😦 (It’s too niche and academic for public libraries, so I’m not bothering to look there.)

The reference I found regarding Sobek, Ra, and Wesir, talked about Sobek-Ra being seen as something like a nighttime form of Ra, like Wesir sometimes is, and emerging from the waters at dawn is like the sun being renewed for another day. Syncretising Sobek to both Temu-Ra and Wesir I find very interesting, and I’ll be chewing on that for a while. I’d already seen some parallels in my UPG, with Sobek-Ra, and Wesir and Ra and Their duality, and I know Sobek is sometimes referenced as guarding Ra’s boat in the Duat, but I hadn’t considered Sobek being syncretised to Temu-Ra and Wesir. Perhaps Djehuty was right when He told me that Sobek is Amun is Ra is Ptah is Wesir, though I still don’t know how Ptah fits in. He’s the only God in that list I haven’t met yet.

(I am planning to add these to the History of Sobek page when I have a spare five minutes to turn them into something other than copypasted sentences and a pile of notes. Well. Everything except the Sobek book, because I can’t reference a book I haven’t read.)

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T is for Telling Stories

In some ways, I feel this is an odd thing to write about, as it isn’t something I do very often. I’m not just talking about mythology, either. I’m talking about new stories, mythological fanfiction, if you will. Because I feel it’s something I should do, in the sense of making new stories and making old stories more approachable. That, and Sobek hasn’t got a lot of mythology about Him, and I’d like to rectify that.

And now I feel really pompous for saying that, but I feel like it’s such a natural thing to do, to tell stories about the Gods to show what They’re like. That’s pretty much what mythology is.

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T is for Tools

This was going to be my second T topic, but I can’t think of anything else to write about, so I’ll do this first, and give myself some time to think of another topic that’s not as vague as ‘thinky thoughts’ or ‘transition-y things’, which is about as much as I’ve got right now. Also, I though I’d save you another post on trans* deities because all I really want to write about is Wesir and the Wild Godde, the Horned Goddess’ companion, and the ties between them and such. So that’s a W topic for later.

This also gives me time to think of another T topic, because I am all out of ideas right now, beyond a rambly post about ~transitions~ and such. I still have a P post to catch up on too, and the only reason that isn’t done either is because I also can’t think of what to write about. Too many P topics. D:

So, this post is about my ritual and magical tools. I feel like it’s a bit obvious, in some ways, but I don’t think I’ve ever really done a post like this before, ever, where I’ve kind of gone through and talked about all the tools I use. This will involve Illustrations, so be warned. 😛

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Q is for Queer Paganism

Still working on that second P post; I keep changing my mind on what to write about. But nevertheless, I have been away this weekend, and managed to get this Q entry done, so that’s something.

I hesitated in even doing this topic at all, for fear that all I’d have to say is something like, ‘YAY QUEER GODS’ and ‘I DON’T KNOW’. Because this isn’t really a Thing, at least not a Thing that can be defined with a single definition. At the same time, I feel I ought to write about it anyway, because it’s something that needs to be discussed more within Pagan circles.

At the same time, though, whatever I talk about here isn’t some definitive thing either. It’s probably just going to end up as my musings on what queer paganism means to me, and if anyone gets anything out of it, awesome. Which is my approach for all these sort of things. These are just my thoughts, nothing more. I don’t have all the answers, nor do I want to, and I feel that a thing like queer paganism is something that needs to be defined for yourself.

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Queer Wheel of the Year – Draft

Okay, so I thought I’d posted this somewhere – either here or Dreamwidth/LJ, but apparently not. Because I apparently got as far as writing it up, and then not sharing it with people. I know I meant to do that though. My approach to the Wheel was both finding a cycle that works for my particular path, and then a more generally and better adaptable queer version for public consumption for those who like using the Wheel as a festival calendar. If anyone has any input or thoughts, I’d love to hear them, and feel free to pass this on to anyone you think might be interested.

To make a tl;dr post shorter, I’ve been reading over the Sabbats, and trying to figure out possible themes to work with for each one that aren’t dependent on heteronormative biological reproduction. I wanted them to be more abstract and inclusive, as well as adaptable for different paths or for people who work with different Deities. I wanted it to be asexual-friendly as well as queer-friendly, because I think the traditional Wiccan Wheel doesn’t do a good job of catering to those two camps.

Also, fyi, I am using ‘queer’ here as a shorthand umbrella term for transgender, genderqueer, and other gender diverse people to save me writing that out every time. It’s meant to be for anyone not interested in a binary gender narrative, or one based in biological heteronormative reproduction and fertility, like the traditional Wheel. So that’s where I’m coming from and what I’m trying to address.

This is also just a draft of my thoughts for each of the Sabbats. I’m open to tweaking or changing anything that doesn’t quite work, as well as any suggestions for what else could be included. Because I don’t want it to be path-specific or pantheon-specific, I don’t want to assign Gods to each one either; if I did, it might only ever be as a suggestion for who to work with? Does that sound like a good idea? I have the Horned Goddess down for Beltaine, but that’s the only association so far, and I’m happy for that to be a personal association more than anything else.

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