* To: A.K., E.H., P.N-U, M.M. – hmw-Ntr & my friends
If you’re not Kemetic but feeling “the call” of this religion, it can be said that any aspiring Kemetic is called for two simple and important tasks: - Maintain Maat and oppose Isfet (help keep the Universe running by maintaining the Balance and All-Things-Proper – even on a small level of your simple things and daily life)—this is not simply our duty; this is also the duty the Netjeru undertake in far grander scale.
- Commune with the Netjeru – and from simple honor, veneration and worship, driven by love and attraction to their perfection and beauty, achieve the blessed afterlife (that may come in many various forms – there are a lot of things to do in the Duat besides watching your crops in the Aaru/Hetep fields grow!) Choices for eternity are indeed very important.
I just recently came back from my [5th, this time] pilgrimage-journey to Egypt; and, I want to tell many stories about my journeys to the land of Netjeru, and my experiences and my spiritual findings and illuminations… so, this would be the first post dealing with the topic, and I need to begin with a story of how I went to Egypt first time ever, and what happened after.
I’ve been drawn to Egypt since my childhood. It was a connection deeper than just fascination by Egyptian art, history, and mythology. In fact, I didn’t like Egyptian mythology much, even, because there were not enough myths in books for children in Soviet Union available, and the myths that were, lacked the adventures which make Greek and Norse myths much more dynamic.
I loved Ancient Egypt as a whole thing. I studied the history, and enjoyed historical fiction; I taught myself not to be frightened in the dim lit Egyptian Hall in the Hermitage, and taught myself not to be disappointed that Egyptian deities look rather obscure, compared to their greek/roman counterparts in the museum halls “next door”. Greek and roman statues of Gods looked like statues of humans, just having all the beauty and perfection. The Netjeru guarded the mysteries.
I'm a witch; it's one of the many terms I use to describe my religious and spiritual nature. For me being a witch is inextricably connected to being a practitioner of magick and communing with spirits both great and small. I also identify as Pagan, a Polytheist, a Wiccan, a magician, and a whole list of other terms that is longer than is needed for the purpose of this blog. I'd like to talk about the reality of magick and of nonphysical beings. Rather than engage in debate about the terms, the tenets, or the tribulations of the various communities that are wrestling with these topics, I will speak from my direct experience of them. I've had many spiritual and overtly supernatural experiences. I have selected a few of them, that from my perspective, are all the proof that I need for myself. These vignettes are brief but I hope that they contain enough detail for you to understand why I considered them a confirmation of my sense of the universe.
When at 15 and decided that I need to join a religion, if I had not chosen to join the most mainstream branch of Christianity in Russia, if I had not read this famous protestant prayer too - “Jesus, be my Lord and Savior”… I would not be what I am today. I would be a totally different person. I remember these moments of “accepting Jesus” very well. I have read this prayer twice; I valued this experience as something indeed important and I remember very well my thoughts and feelings. Yes, I read the prayer of my own free will-- but did I want it with the whole of my heart? Did I have trust in Jesus-the-personal-savior 100%? Fortunately (or not very fortunately) I remember my religious experiences and adventures very brightly, just as in Dumbledore’s magical pensieve.
Religion is always a choice. There are people raised in particular religions (or lack of them) since childhood, and it’s very natural for them to accept the beliefs of their parents/family as part of their cultural identity- something that isn’t questioned. But as the kid becomes a teen and then an adult – there are points of maturation – there are moments when religion then becomes a choice, when one reaches a point where you can accept a religion whole-heartedly (either self-chosen, or in keeping with one’s cultural surroundings and expectations). And this is always a personal mystery and a turning point for a believer.
The breeze blew down from the top of the mountain pushing its way through the heat and humidity. It rushed through her kitchen window filling the small room with the smell of crisp cool air. Blowing her hair back off the tackiness of her face and neck as she stood there washing dishes. The room had a slight relief from the heaviness of the air.
She looked out the window and up thought the trees. There she saw the storm taking shape.
To this awakening goddess, celebrating holidays has more to do with personal history than traditional roots. Imbolc, the modern Pagan celebration of an ancient Gaelic festival, means so much more to me now than it did when I first started studying Wicca and Paganism thirteen years ago.
Thirteen years ago, I found a home in Paganism at my very first public ritual, which was a celebration of Imbolc conducted by popular Pagan writer Ann Moura and her Ladies Tea Circle. I entered my first circle at that festival, and won a raffle for the first time in my life – an amethyst earring and pendant set and an hour-long session with a psychic who would become my mentor on my path to developing my own metaphysical interests and abilities.