Finding Old Gods in New Places

One of the difficulties, I think, of Kemetic reconstruction is that we are so far removed—both in time and space—from ancient Egypt, where these gods and goddesses originated. As such, we may not have access to those experiences of geology, ecology, weather, and wildlife in which the AE people felt the presence of their gods.

So, how/where do you feel the presence of the gods? What experiences in your daily life remind you of Them?

Do you find Them in local wildlife or features of the landscape? In certain weather phenomena, or the turning of the seasons? Food, fruits, flowers? Do you maybe even see Them peeking back at you from behind the eyes of modern pop-culture characters?

Don’t though forget that the Roman empire exported some of ancient Egypt this far north with a temple to Isis in London. We may never know who ran such a temple, but if there were those from southern Europe or even Egypt it’s self, then they too would have been far from home in a strange geopgrahy and of seasons, having to keep track the best they could.

For me, I try and make sure I have something of AE in my daily life. I perform a call to the sun every morning, I include various food stuffs in my daily diet, I have my ‘altar’ space by my front door, and there are many others.

In the wider space I sort of map my geography to that of AE. I life in Dover, though the Dour river flows in the opposite direction to the Nile, I happen to live on the east bank and spend much time while not at work near the beach or the river. Even though the river is only 4 miles long and not the 900+ of the Nile, I do find that beneficial as I can go the full length from the beach (my delta) or one of the various springs that feed it.

On top of that I spot regular visitors of heron along the river bank. There is also an amazing huge cedar of Lebanon in one of the parks. I see elements of AE all around me. Sand might be what we associate with Egypt but fort he people they loved their gardens, water and the greenery.

Kev

This distance in space (time not so much) is why I keep leaving the Egyptian gods for long periods - I’m much more about the Land of Britain. And yet, one at a time, they will call me back every few years, and mainly it seems to be to do with the sky - most recently Nut for star magic and her protection of the dead among the stars.

I quite understand that feeling of disconnection. Often when I’m on the beach I will look out to sea and just reassure myself that this water in front of me connects back in some way to the Med, and then to Egypt. Its fanciful I know :slight_smile:

And as you say, the gods are there, never far away when we need them. That can be reassuring, as I’ve had moments where I felt completely lost and wondered if they are worth continuing with. Silly really.

1 Like

Your point about the Romans is well taken, @kev. The gods of ancient Egypt have already proven adaptable to changes in culture and climate; I suppose it’s just up to us to keep an open mind, and see what new ways They show up in our lives.

I have a bad habit of being drawn to pantheons that don’t match the geography and climate where I find myself, and for me at least I find that makes it more difficult to connect. As a result I tend to drift towards Powers that have more ‘universal’ or abstract areas of influence—the sun, the stars, death, love, like that.

Regarding individual gods and goddesses, have you found that They adopt new signs and symbols in order to make Themselves known to you, to draw your attention or just remind you that They’re there? For example in Heathenry a lot of folks say they associate Loki with foxes (and coyotes, in the Americas). Those aren’t traditional, but it seems He’s been happy to adapt and ‘borrow’ local wildlife that come with trickster associations. Britain has no lions (anymore), or cobras, or scorpions (as far as I know?), or crocodiles, so some of the most salient sacred animals of AE don’t often make an appearance here. But in your experience do They find a way to use those signs anyway (through, I don’t know, TV or movies or social media), or have They taken up new, non-traditional signs that are more readily available?

I get what you mean about lack of feeling the right ‘atmosphere’ being so far away physically to what they might have felt. Symbolism and how that affects the mind I think is the key. They do draw out attributes that appeal to our natures and interests. That is no bad thing because it means we grow curious and explore further.

Although we do lack obvious symbolism in regards to the larger animals we still have the smaller ones such as birds, and even hedgehogs they once found a love for :slight_smile: I’m quite fond of the work of Terry Pratchett and in particular the book ‘Small Gods’ which sort of holds similar views as to mine about the source of deity. I also have a back ground in Chaos Magic which again puts forward numerous ideas about what they are. All of which provides a convenient answer to why now, and why here. I’m happy to let it go at that and just accept the interest of these particular deities in my life. Could spend a long time working out ‘why’ answers rather than getting on with life. :slight_smile:

Oh and yes we do have scorpions in the UK. More frequent down here in Kent, where there is one of the biggest colonies near Chatham. We only have the small translucent harmless ones. They came across on the cargo ships a long time ago and adapted to our warmer weather down here. I’ve yet to see one myself locally though I am aware if I were to use an ultraviolet lamp on particularly old walls which have lots of crevices I might be lucky to see one :slight_smile:

1 Like

I’ve found it easier to connect to the Netjer in summer and tend to lean towards more witchy practices in the winter. I see Wesir in vegetation a lot. I currently have a lot of trees outside my flat and feel Him there a lot. I used to live near a small river and that made me feel really connected to Egypt. It was like my own personal Nile that I used to walk along to work everyday. My practice was much stronger back then. I miss being near water.

I find that the gods can easily blend in with other cultures. My UPG that is shared by a few others, is that Bast particularly likes the Far East. I keep some decorated chopsticks and a pretty sake set for Her. I also attribute local animals when it feels right. Djehuty, to me at least, is an owl. They are supposed to be wise and his name sounds like “dj-hoot-y lol.

2 Likes

@Senneferet Thoth is also a lunar deity, so I think the owl association is quite apt.

Your UPG about Bast is really interesting, and gets at a big part of what I was thinking about when I started this topic. When old gods are trying to get the attention of people outside their original cultural context, they sometime have to get creative in order to communicate—and sometimes that means ‘borrowing’ stuff from other cultures, including modern pop-culture. For example I have an Icelandic friend who works with the goddess Skadi, but her goddess initially got her attention by way of Buddhist imagery.

In my own experience, I’ve been working with an as-yet unidentified Power for at least the past several years (although I suspect they may actually have been around since my childhood) who has used a mixture of Christian, Hindu, pop-culture and most recently Kemetic ideas and imagery to communicate—their sudden use of Kemetic concepts being one of the things that brought me here. I’m still not sure what pantheon(s) they’re actually from, but I gather from how they communicate that they’re reliant on images and associations that I at least partly understand. It’s also entirely possible they’ve been throwing signs at me from their own cultural context all along, but because they weren’t meaningful to me they passed totally unnoticed.

2 Likes