Thursday, November 26, 2009

My Gods

Recently I have fallen in love with my gods again. Not in a romantic, boyfriend-girlfriend kind of love-but the love that is there no matter what, the love that exists between deity and follower, parent and child, the love that is expressed in my every waking moment. I have realized that even though I may be in physical pain (as I am now-getting teeth pulled is never fun) or emotional pain (relationships between people are messy and sometimes inconvenient, but we humans let our heart strings become tangled too easily) the love for my gods will always be there. Their love for me will always exist as well.

In Kemetic Orthodoxy, which I am a Shemsu, or royal follower of, the gods and goddesses of Ancient Egypt (also called Netjer) individually create our souls, otherwise called the ba and the ka of a human being. They do this through the spoken word, and through this word, the essence of a person's being is created, sculpted, sung into being. I love the idea of my life being my Parent's creation, that I am the creative expression of Deity manifested.

The three main gods that I follow and serve are: Taweret, Djehuty and Amun. They are Netjeru, part of Netjer, and They have created me. I know this with my entire soul, and i feel it in my heart. My Mother, Taweret, is one of rivers and hippopotamus, she comes in strength to aid the weak and the pregnant, and can be a tender mother or a fierce warrior goddess who fights off demons in the Duat. She is a hippopotamus standing upright, with the paws of a lioness (all the better to slash demons with I suppose) and a crocodile upon her back. In Ancient Egyptian art, this crocodile is sometimes assumed to be Her son, Sobek, the crocodile god of kingship and guardian of the Nile River. I love my Mother Taweret, the One Who Comes In Perfection, the Lady of Pure Water. I see her when the sun glances off the water, throwing sparkles of light into the world, in the luminescent mist of a waterfall, and in the secrets of my own heart.

My Father, Djehuty, is the Wise Ibis. He is commonly depicted as a man with the head of an ibis, as a full ibis or a baboon. He is the Healer, the Musician, the Calculator, the One Who Writes. My Father speaks with wisdom, and is always one step ahead of me. Whenever I have a problem, He always has the answer-but most of the time He leaves me to figure it out for myself. He is credited with inventing hieroglyphic language, mathematics, astronomy (the study of the stars and the night sky), medicinal practices, the game of Senut and much more. He is the Netjeru of knowledge, the never static one who make the world run according to its laws. He is comforting, loving, tender, but I have never gotten Him as a wise old professor always ready to have a cup of tea and discuss philosophy. I have gotten Him as a heron, white and illuminating the dark spaces in my mind, the places where I have buried my secrets so deeply that only He can dig them out. He comes to me as a trickster, one who will make you laugh to find the answer, one who will always be on the winning team. I love Him with all my heart, and will serve Him forever.

My Beloved, Amun, is a mystery to me. I have felt His presence once in shrine, while doing zazen style meditation. There was a silence, as if before a storm, and then a great humming pervaded the air. It was the sound of silence, of pure quiet. He is the Hidden One, the one of riddles and secret doors, and I'm sure He would appreciate a secret garden as well. He has been called the King of the Gods, and that epitaph is true in my experience. He is very regal, and kingly, presenting Himself with an aura of great power that can only be wielded by a god. He has chosen to be present in my destiny and in my life, whether or not I ultimately recognize His presence or not-He is the Hidden One after all, Lord of the Wind.

My gods are precious to me, They give me joy and love and hope, when all I can do is sob and be utterly human. They lift me up, and promise me a better time, where I will experience Zep Tepi and rejoice in the art of living. They do not promise it as a far off, maybe in the future promise, but as a vow that in a moment, in an hour, in a day, I will find joy in life-because I am Their creation, I am Their song and breath. How can I not experience life as pure ecstasy when They have given it to me?

For Ma'at, and my gods.


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