Wisdom from Sobek

“If you do not go out and see the world, you will not know what to bring back to the temple.”

This was part of a longer conversation about priesting roles and How To Temple. I’ve been diving back into the Book of the Faiyum recently, and pondering what all of that means, and how to make sense of it when I don’t have a full translation. And how the Ogdoad is really caught up in all that mythology in a way I hadn’t really appreciated before, and I find that very intriguing.

And so tonight I was pondering the old temples and priesthoods, and how to do that work today. He showed me one of the temples, and we stayed in the outer courtyard. There were a lot of people milling around, making their own prayers. Sobek said it was no good mysticing my way too high into the sanctuary if it meant I forgot what ordinary people brought to Him. And He reminded me that priests back then weren’t full time priests, and that neither should we be, as modern priests. If you need a day job, so be it. And He suggested spending one season a year doing work outside the temple. Do your magic for others, do community-building work, do volunteering, do whatever work comes to you. And then take that back to the temple.

So that’s giving me a lot to chew on right now as I ponder how to wrangle this priesting thing into order and make it fit with everything else I’m being called to do. And I don’t think this is a terrible idea, either. I think it’s a good idea to spend some time each year doing more practical out-in-the-community work for a while to focus on others and see what needs doing, and not just spend all your time up in your head. It’s a grounding thing. So I might have to look at how to make that work for me, because I can see real value in that, if I do it right. But I thought I’d share in case it causes anyone else to have a ponder, too.

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The first time I visited Bakhu

I was sure I’d posted this meditation log already, but apparently not. Either way, this is from the Greystone Path work I did back in 2013? Something like that. This exercise was to create a mental landscape, to imagine it in your mind, as a way to introduce us to visualisation. The instruction was to imagine we were stading in a meadow at dawn (and not a generic field of wheat as it became in my mind), and to imagine the rest from there.

I’d never had much success with visualisation before, but something about this really worked for me, and I had this whole world open up for me that I hadn’t even been aware of before. I suppose some would call it astral stuff, but I waver on that point, because my work there never goes beyond Bakhu, so I don’t really know what else might be out there, except for that one pathway to Wesir’s hall in the Duat that I went to once. I don’t really travel elsewhere, this tends to me my meeting place instead, where I go to meet gods, and where gods come to meet me. That seems to be how it works, and it works well for me.

So, inspired by a thread over at The Cauldron, I thought I’d share that very first imagining, when Bakhu came alive for me for the first time. In some ways, it’s changed a lot since then, but in many others, it’s very much the same as I describe below. It’s very colour-coded in a lot of ways. Sometimes, it’s always night time, and a full moon rises over the water. And there are a lot more temples there now than there was at the beginning. A LOT more. XD But I thought I’d share, in case anyone else finds this of interest, too.

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So Masrai came to Bakhu

I haven’t talked much about Masrai on here, since it was just a fictional pantheon as far as I was concerned. I don’t mean that to say that just because it’s fictional, it doesn’t mean anything. I say that to clarify that Masrai, and the gods of Her pantheon, came from somewhere in my head, and are not, as far as I know, gods that might once have existed in this world. I don’t know everything, of course, and the astral being what it is, there’s every chance that alternate universes exist, and who knows what might have been, and what happens to gods that were long-forgotten. Maybe it’s because I’ve spent a bit more time with these gods and maybe it’s one of those ‘name it and it comes to life’ things that characters often get. Maybe it’s different because they’re gods. I don’t know.

That said, I’ve kept a shrine to Masrai and some of Her other gods for a while now, mostly to keep that energy flowing in as I work on those novels. I don’t know why, but something told me to build a shrine, that this was important to give these gods a physical space in my room. Still, in spite of that, I haven’t done much in the way of worship. I didn’t really know what ritual forms to use, since these gods departed Egypt during Mythic Time, and have spent the rest of their lives in the Libyan desert. (In this story, at any rate. I can’t say what they did here, if they ever existed here at all.) But I still kept a shrine for them.

I’d never really had much more than a faint impression from Masrai as I wrote Her myths down, like something deeper had touched my mind, but nothing in terms of speaking or seeing Her. Writing Her myths down was never important for the novel, either. It’s extra information. But I don’t often buy fancy red handmade books and begin writing myths down for gods. I haven’t even done that for Sobek. But there was something about Masrai that made me start this book, and commit to finishing it. I am sure She gave me all the words, and now all I need to do is finish it.

But Monday’s meditation signalled that things had gone up a notch, and that this pantheon needs more from me than I was giving them. Woo warning, for those who need it. This is a bunch of weird shit even I am surprised by, so.

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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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Mysteries and Initiation

I wanted to write about this before, but I needed the chance to digest everything from Monday, just to make sure I had everything straight in my head. It’s been a intense Mysteries of Wesir this year, though at least I had some forewarning from Hekate about during the last noumenia. Knowing something is going to happen is never quite the same as going through it, though.

Warnings for epic amounts of woo and UPG, if that bothers you, but I feel the need to document all this here, just so it’s down on paper. Er. Well. On the Intarwebs. You know what I mean. Also, there is discussion of the Pillars of the Naos meditations, and there may be spoilers for those who haven’t finished that first month yet.

The tl;dr version, for anyone who doesn’t want the details is: initiation by gods is A Thing, and now Everything’s Changed, and apparently this makes me a priest now. Or something. IDK. *flails about*

If you want details, it’s after the cut.

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