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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Heka: Isis-Renenutet’s Prosperity Box

I hadn’t planned to create something like this when I sat down on Saturday afternoon at my computer. All I did was ponder doing another job/money spell, since I’m between jobs at the moment, and also out of jars for jar spells, and, well. This happened. It was originally Isis’, and I have to admit I did imagine Isis from the Age of Mythology games ~empowering my box with golden light~ to increase your gold collection rate (hence, you get more prosperity omg). I blame that for the GOLD theme.

But as I’ve been diving deeper into Sobek’s Faiyum thing, and Sobek and Renenutet’s temple in Dja, well. I’ve been pondering Isis-Renenutet, and this wasn’t helped by this particular statue of … Hathor/Isis?/idk … with a cobra on Her arm (see the top statue on this page. Yeah. That one.), much like the image of Her I saw in a dream some time ago (except in battle gear, not a winged dress):

Isis smiting art draft

I have srsly lost the ability to tell with any sort of accuracy whether any ‘Egyptian Goddess With Solar Disk And Horns’ statue is actually Hathor or Isis, and generally just go with who it seems to look like. And that statue reminds me of Isis-Renenutet. Also, I came across a reference to Hekate having a serpent on Her left arm too, so. /Isis-Hekate anyone? /serpents everywhere wtf.  Alsoalso, can I stop dreaming of statues that then become real I don’t have enough room for them all nor the money to waste on them. D:

Which is why this ended up being Isis-Renenutet, and not just Isis. Anyway. tl;dr I made a thing and did some heka and in the interests of sharing the prosperity, Imma share it with you. Because it seems to have worked so far, and idk the more the merrier, etc. IDK. Also, I always do ritual purifications before heka rites, but that’s just my thing idk. Hopefully, someone will find this useful idk, but let me know if you have any success with it.

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Mysteries of Wesir preparations

Mysteries of Wesir shrine prep

This year’s Mysteries of Wesir shrine. It’s very pared back and simple, but I think it gives it a strong focus. How much of the stuff I removed will go back afterwards, I don’t know, but we’ll see.

The full moon is coming up, and I have some tools to consecrate. So it seems like the time to set up properly for the Mysteries of Wesir. I also redid the druid shrine for the coming High Day, which I still haven’t settled on yet, but it’ll be about Hekate if nothing else, so. I’ll probably do it a day or two before May 1, just so there’s space for both. I think the only thing I’ve needed to get is some more black taper candles, which I just ordered on ebay, because this is Australia in April, and black candles are hard to find at the best of times, so.

It’s been a strange week, in many ways. My daily devotions have been ad-libbed, and the gods I mention almost all the time are Ra and Wesir as I light the candles. It’s strange to do that after having such deity-focused devotions for so long, but I find it refreshing. A lot of my words have been about purifying myself; I find I’m censing myself, and purifying myself with the water offerings, and drinking in the light from the flames and letting them wash over me. It feels like it’s been a week-long ritual purification, but I’m okay with that.

There was a bit of meditation with Sobek this morning in my half-asleep state, so I’m tempted to feel like this is when things are slowly coming back to normal. The full moon ritual tomorrow, when we consecrate the heka knife, the heka snake wand, and Hekate’s knife, will probably be the start of the preparations proper for the Mysteries and the coming High Day.

I won’t be able to do the full 6 hour night vigil, though. I’ve got some paid work to do the day after, so staying up all night is not an option. I’m not sure yet what I’m going to do; it’ll either be a day vigil instead so there are still 6 hours done, or it’ll be a shorter vigil in the evening, perhaps 8pm til 11pm. I’m tempted to do it during the day, because I haven’t done a full six hour vigil for a long time, and even though it won’t be quite the same during the day, it’s better than cutting it short again. But we’ll do some divination and see what the gods want.

Anyway, I have rituals to prepare and write, so I’ll leave this here. I’ll post photos of the tools later once they’ve been consecrated so you can get a better look at them and what I did with them to decorate and consecrate them.

Sobek Rosary – coming soon!

Sobek and Isis prayer beads

A collection of Sobek rosaries, and another set I made at the same time. The set in the middle is for Isis/Hekate, but the others are for Sobek, made using the same pattern, but with different gemstone beads. Also, the second from the right, I now realise, has a bead missing, so it will probably remain with me, rather than go into the pool of Things That Might Get Sold One Day.

So I was asked a while ago about whether I might ever sell prayer beads with set prayers, and my brain decided this was a challenge I needed to meet. The prayer itself was drafted over a couple of days, and the beads took one afternoon to string together, once I had the pattern. The above, sans the pink set, are mostly prototypes at this stage, but they’re made from a mix of carnelian, lapis, sodalite, moonstone, red tiger eye, goldstone, and blue goldstone. I used tassels, mostly because I have a metric shit-ton of them, and it seems easier to prototype with tassels than use up the charms I don’t have because I haven’t done a charms order in way too long.

The beads are made of 29 beads, excluding the spacers. The four larger beads are for Dawn, Noon, Dusk, and Midnight. The bead next to the tassel is for the opening/closing prayer. The other 24 beads are for each hour of the day. So it’s designed to follow the progress of the sun, and Sobek, throughout the day and night, with an hour for each prayer. I’m still drafting the layout and final wording of the whole thing, but I thought I’d post the draft I first came up with below the cut, just as a little teaser. I’m hoping to have these printed out on nice paper, with brief, but sufficient instructions, that get shipped along with the beads. I’m also contemplating a set for Heru and Isis, and perhaps anyone else who decides they want a set prayer for their beads, but those are a long way off.

Actually, the third from the right, the lapis set, isn’t made the same as the others, and I think that was because I’d run out of 4mm beads. So I think there are twelve beads in each section. That might just end up as another set of Sobek beads, rather than ones that go with this particular prayer. Which reminds me to add 4mm beads to my next bead order, when I have any money left to do that. (Srsly, buy my things so I can keep making new things. Like these!)

Anyway. Enough of my rambling. Here’s the draft prayer I came up with. Once I’ve settled on a final version, I’ll try it out for a while, and when I’m happy with it, it’ll go out with the beads, and I’ll post a longer 101 thing about it here for future reference. Any feedback or suggestions are always welcomed.

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I have been making all the beads

Apparently it is prayer bead making season. I’ve made all of the above over the past fortnight or so. Which is good, I guess, because I sort of felt like I’d been making all the other things, and didn’t have enough prayer beads around. So I made some. Quite a lot.

The left photo shows prayer beads for Poseidon, Mars the Centurion, Hephaistos, the Dark Goddess (whoever She is), two for Isis, two for Heru, and one for Sobek. The set for Mars followed His guidelines for it. It had to have 100 beads for 100 soldiers, plus one for Himself as their centurion, and the red tassle, which echoed the helmet of a Roman soldier. Poseidon’s set was made with the sense of capturing the colours of the stormy sea; it has an unofficial title of the Rage of Poseidon.

The set made for the Dark Goddess wasn’t a set I was planning to make, but I found the beads all together in a little bag in my bead box, and wondered who I’d planned to make it for onceuponatime. I decided to string them anyway and not waste them, and the energy I got suggested a name of The Dark Goddess, whoever She is. She may be Hekate, or Kali, or the Morrigan, or some sort of darker death deity energy like that. I have no idea who. But that’s the perception I got as I was making it.

The second photo shows some of the more recent creations. With the exception of the rose quartz set, the other beads are for Sobek. The rose quartz beads were guided by Hekate; She said it is a set for healing, love, and peace. It is made with rose quartz and amethyst.

The other sets for Sobek are experiments, playing around with structures that could be used for a set prayer. I had a request for something like this over at Per Sebek, and thought I’d have a go and see what I could come up with. I wrote a prayer that might be used with the beads last week, and this was me trying to design some beads to go with it. I think I’ll refrain from listing those Sobek beads just yet, while I iron out the kinks in the prayer and how to use them, but they will turn up eventually. I want to spend some time using them myself, just to see how well it works, and figure out the best way to format the prayer, and make any tweaks to it, before I decide how I’m going to include it, and print it it out. I’ll probably post some more about that as I work on it, but that’s the plan, to have a set of beads for Sobek that go with a set prayer, if that’s the sort of thing you work well with.

Anyway, I have more things to do, and I want to get some of those beads listed this weekend, just so they’re up. I have a few things to retake photos of, but other than that, it’s a matter of sitting down and getting the work done.

New: Altar Tiles – Ankh, Awen, Star of Olympus

I’ve finally retaken photos of the last three tiles I made a while ago, and have them up and listed in the shop now. This has taken a bit longer than I had anticipated, because life has been busy, and I’ve been sick, but I’m slowly working through the backlog of stuff I need to write up and list, and this is, at the very least, three I can stop worrying about now.

I will be picking up some more of these 70c tiles from Bunnings at some point, so I can make some more, but for now, this is what I’ve got.

1) Ankh altar tile
This altar tile has a simple black and gold design, with the ankh hand-drawn with a gold paint marker. It measures 9 cm/3.54 inches in diameter, and suits smaller shrines or portable altar kits. It has a dark green felt backing and is varnished to protect it from damage.

The ankh is one of the most important symbols of ancient Egypt, signifying life. It is often shown being held by gods, and by them, given to humans, symbolising the life given by the gods. It is a powerful symbol for any Kemetic shrine.

Listing on Etsy: Ankh altar tile

2) Awen altar tile

This altar tile shows the druidic Awen symbol, which signifies the rays of inspiration that come from the Three Kindreds. It is a simple black and gold design, with the Awen hand-drawn with a gold paint marker.

It measures 9 cm/3.54 inches in diameter, and suits smaller shrines or portable altar kits. It has a yellow felt backing and is varnished to protect it from damage.

Listing on Etsy: Awen altar tile

3) Star of Olympus altar tile

This altar tile shows the Star of Olympus, a star that represents the twelve great Olympian gods, in black and gold. The Star is hand-drawn with a gold paint marker. This would be a great addition to any small Hellenic shrine or travel kit for those who wish to honour the Olympians.

The tile measures 9 cm/3.54 inches, and suits smaller shrines or portable altar kits. It has a grey felt backing and is varnished to protect it from damage.

Listing on Etsy: Star of Olympus altar tile

The new Shedety Shrine

Shedety Shrine March 2016

The new shrine, photographed after this morning’s devotions.

So I think I’m just about settled on this particular layout for the time being, so I thought I’d give you all a proper look at it. The first obvious thing is that the naos is gone. It just wasn’t going to work on a shrine for four gods, so it’s been put away for now. It’s a bit sad, not having the naos, but I like this setup, too. The shrine feels focused now, and I’ve cleared out some of the excess stuff that was making it feel like there was too much going on.

The shrine gets used as an altar table for the druidic shrine above, so there has to be enough space to work as well as be a shrine, and it’s a constant give and take on how much space is available for each. This made it tricky to settle on a layout that worked, because it had to work for my own daily devotions. Everything had to be in the right place so it’s easy to reach, and I don’t burn myself, and there’s room for the ritual book, and everything else.

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How I Learned To Build Shrines

So I was asked to do a post on shrine-building, and talk about how I put my shrines together. The short answer, in many cases, is simply symmetry, but that wouldn’t make much of a blog post. Instead, I thought I’d go back through my old shrine photos, and perhaps talk about how I learned to build shrines, and how they’ve changed over the years. I don’t think I’ve ever done a post like that before, and I was curious to see how things had changed, and how much had stayed the same.

This will be a bit long, and image-heavy, so you’ve been warned. But other than that, I hope it’s somewhat interesting to you. Also, I apologise if some of these are not great quality. I did the best I could.

ETA: ffs I guess this is what I get for posting right before bed, sorry for the formatting errors. They are fixed now. Flickr embed code is the worst, I swear to the gods. 😡

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IDK, you do one full moon ritual to Isis…

So it was the full moon on Monday, and I’m getting back into the swing of marking the moon cycles, with noumenia and the full moon penciled in at the moment. Hekate’s getting noumenia, and Isis the full moon. So that’s a thing now. And so I did the libation rite for Isis, for lack of any other ritual ideas, and settled in for meditation with Her, because She’s been wanting to reconnect with me since I got the new statue, which is nice. And somehow, not surprising.

Isis has always been in and out of my life, over the past sixteen years or so. And it’s been a while since we’ve had a proper devotional relationship. Actually, I think the last time I had anything like the daily devotional practices I have now with Her was back when I first started out, when I’d light incense for Her before school, and read out that prayer of awakening from The Mysteries of Isis. In some ways, I’m not surprised She’s asked to be back in my daily devotions again. But I can’t say I expected Her to request it last night. But I’m willing to go with it, if that’s what She wants.

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New: Altar Tiles – Mercury, Ma’at, Three Hallows

Three of six new altar tiles have been added to the shop! I got inspired by the 70c wooden coasters I could get at Bunnings, and painted them up. I used a gold paint marker for the designs, though I painted them and put the felt on the back, before I’d decided what each tile was going to be used for. So some of the colours don’t match up. But I’ll do it the other way around next time, I promise. 😉

The other three altar tiles will go up once I get around to retaking photos of them that aren’t blurry.

Hermes-Mercury altar tile
Diameter: 3.54 in; 9cm

This black and gold altar tile shows the planetary symbol for Mercury, and can be used for magical, alchemical, or devotional purposes, as part of a shrine for Mercury or Hermes. Mercury has associations with communication, commerce, and travel.

The tile measures 9 cm/3.54 inches, and suits smaller shrines or portable altar kits. It has a light green felt backing and is varnished to protect it from damage.

If you’re interested in purchasing this altar tile, see the listing on Etsy here.

Ma’at altar tile
Diameter: 3.54 in; 9cm

This is a simple black and gold altar tile, suitable for smaller Kemetic shrines and portable kits. This tile has the outline of the feather of Ma’at, the goddess to whom even the gods answer. Ma’at is a central concept in Kemetic religion, and is said to be the power that holds the world together. It is also sometimes translated as justice or balance or order, though these are imprecise.

This altar tile measures 9 cm/3.54 inches in diameter. It has a light green felt backing and is varnished to protect it from damage.

If you’re interested in purchasing this altar tile, see the listing on Etsy here.

Three Hallows altar tile
Diameter: 3.54 in; 9cm

This altar tile has an original design, showing the druidic Three Hallows of Fire, Well, and Tree. It has a slight Hellenic inspiration, though it can be used on any druidic shrine. The Three Hallows make up the druidic cosmology, and are usually incorporated in some way on many druid shrines.

This altar tile is black and gold, with the design hand-drawn with a gold paint marker. The tile measures 9 cm/3.54 inches, and suits smaller shrines or portable altar kits. It has a yellow felt backing and is varnished to protect it from damage.

If you’re interested in purchasing this altar tile, see the listing on Etsy here.