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Messages - Sedjfaiemitui

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1
Em hotep nefer, Mercymagpie! :D

Concerning "The Sea," in Egyptian there are some conventional and unconventional manners in which this is identified, and there is not simply one "Sea" :

The first and most obvious is Wadj-Wer, meaning "Great Green," Who is perhaps best understood as the Divine personification of the Mediterranean Sea. It must be emphasized that Wadj-Wer is specific to the Mediterranean Sea, though. He isn't "all saltwater bodies." Different and foreign bodies of water -- rivers, lakes, and seas -- as far afield as Mesopotamia (e.g., pXr-wr, loosely translated "The Great Meanderer," for the Euphrates River) had their own unique names in Egyptian documents, and there's not a discernible emphasis on "empersoned" Divinity for ALL of them that I've yet seen or been made aware of. Not all bodies of water were equal to Ancient Egyptians, in that respect: Not all rivers in the world are Hapi, and not all seas in the world are Wadj-Wer. Hapi and Wadj-Wer are tied to very specific natural features, which each possess very specific religious meanings and ritual significances.

Nun is conventionally described in Western translations as "The Primaeval Ocean," but in more of a "nativized" understanding, He's among numerous things a source of freshwater, the subterranean source of the Nilotic flood (Hapi) which must be "called forth/up from His Cavern." "Primaeval Waters" is thus a fairer translation of the encoded Egyptian nuances, there. This is expounded upon in various funerary texts. Nun is a bit different from both Hapi and Wadj-Wer in that Nun is not tied to any specific, physical body of water on Planet Earth. Nun is -- in addition to being the source of "Undifferentiated Everythingness" prior to the Creator's "First Time," a source which has always existed and will always continue to exist -- "The Water of the Unseen World" which permeates and transcends our own material "Seen World."

Sobek is historically associated with "The Sea," but in context, we read that it's not a proper "sea" at all -- it's Lake Qarun in the Faiyum region. "The Sea" was a nickname (preserved in its Coptic name, "Phion") given to this large freshwater body in Ancient times. But, as we know from detailed documentation and surviving physical evidence from places like Soknopaiou Nesos, Bacchias, Tebtunis, etc., in the Ptolemaic and Roman Periods, we get very itemized and specialized "Sobeks," Who are at the same time the same God and yet not the same God: Soknopaios (Gr: "Sobek, Lord of the Island"); Pnepheros (From Egy. nfr-Hr, "Beautiful of Face / Pleasant of Countenance / Happy-Faced"); Sokonnokonni (If my Greek is any good, Gr: "Sobek Lord of the Sands/Desert/Dusty-Place," I assume deriving from konio-, "dust." This name is specific to Genout / Bacchias. There isn't a whole lot of published information on this particular Sobek I've been able to get my hands on, so I can't be sure my Greek translation is accurate); Soknobrasis (Gr: "Sobek, Lord of Joy"); and so on. TL;DR - There's no particular reason we can't have a "Sobek, Lord of the Sea" in a more abstract, non-local sense. There are -- theoretically -- a million same-but-not-same iterations of Sobek. And of every God, for that matter, though it's much more pronounced in the Ptolemaic and Roman evidence versus the Egyptian evidence, given the greater degree of "separateness" the Greek and Roman occupiers of North Africa treated each specialized name of native Gods. :)

As others have already said, for many of the associations you're looking for, those are associations YOU will wind up making as you explore your personal devotional relationships with various Gods. :) Some are loosely, sometimes strongly substantiated by ancient evidence, but much of it doesn't have a precise analogue in said evidence. A given religious sentiment or expression doesn't always need ancient evidence behind it in order to be a valid one.

Additionally, many Gods share common epithets (much like Sobek's "Beautiful of Face / Happy-Faced" epithet, and the "Sweet of Love" (bnr-mrwt) epithet. Heru and Amun-Re and Sobek and countless other Gods and Goddesses are described in terms of "Sweet of Love" in various inscriptions). Technically, EVERY God/dess is a God/dess of Love. Each God/dess is all things, and does all things, for His/Her worshipers. ;)

I hope this helps! ;D

Senebty!
Sedjfai

2
[PUBLIC] Netjer (Our Gods & Goddesses) / Re: Amun-Ra as beloved
« on: June 06, 2020, 10:10:54 am »
Em hotep nefer, Sopdetmuti and all! :)

Amun-Re(-Banebdjedet) is my Father, rather than my Beloved. As I've written before elsewhere, even when we're simply speaking of Amun-Re and not His manifestation in the Divine person of Banebdjedet, He is a set of individuals Whose ends and beginnings are difficult to discern. For me, He is Amun-Re, He is Banebdjedet, and He is both Gods manifesting as a unique and  an incredibly diffuse and abstract third Who is called "Djefedjef" in mystical writings pertaining to Amun Theology dating between the New Kingdom and Late Period. He is each of Them individually, and He is all of Them at once.

Personally, one of my favourite portions of Amun's Mysteries is in His being Djefedjef, "Hidden within His Iris." It is not a flower; rather, it is His Eye-Goddess (usually Sekhmet). She is His physical representation -- the Atenet, the feminine Aten -- yet She hides Him, clothes Him in a mystical aura that allows Him to be percieved wihout being revealed. There, within His supreme sanctuary in the sky, He is the Mysterious Ba, Mysterious of Mysteries Whose Mysteries Cannot Be Known. (And yes, the Egyptian hymns really are that "redundant," to emphasize how incredibly transcendent and immutable this God is. ;)

Amun-Re's hiddenness is not a "lurking in shadow," but an obscurement by His own, supremely overwhelming brilliance. He is everywhere, enduring in everything, the Lord of All That Is, illuminating all things in Creation. Because He is so vast and so overwhelming, He is more than just difficult to "see." :)

It's not a failing on anyone's part to not "understand" Amun-Re. Indeed, it is impossible to come anywhere near to fully comprehending Him. The only things we can really "know" are those things which concern the surviving evidence of His historical cults and what His temple scribes recorded in their hymns to Him. But this is, at the end of the day, a superficial kind knowledge compared to experiencing His Mysteries, which are difficult to articulate.

I hope this helps some!

Senebty,
Sedjfai

3
No problem! I'm glad it was helpful. 😙

I also meant to but neglected to add that srq-Htyt simply means "[Who] Causes Throats to Breathe." This is an attribute and epithet of Gods in the role of Creator. 🙂 In the Amun hymns at Hebet, for example, we see in the Hymn to the Bau of Amun:

sDm.tw xrw=f nn mAA.tw=f Hr srq Hty.t nb smn ib n bkA.w Hr ms.w=s anx TA.w pr im=s, which means "His [Amun's] voice is heard, but He is not seen, while letting every throat breathe; He is the one Who reassures the pregnant concerning her children, so the newborn which comes forth from her lives."

*Edited because my phone is a butt with its tiny keys.

Senebty!
Sedjfai

4
Em hotep nefer, all!

I can confirm, there has never been an attested occurrence of a feminine stX. I'm not sure who claimed that and where, but it's not a real thing in any original texts concerning Set that I've analyzed in the CME and LE stages of the language. That someone (or someones) who might've made that claim may have been confused by documents like P. Wilbour, dating to the 20th Dynasty, which list human individuals both male and female who possess theophoric personal names associated with Set -- specifically in the area of Sepermeru, one of the largest cult centers of Set during the Ramesside Period. The vast majority of the 42 Set-named individuals mentioned in this document are presumably male; only 3 are explicitly female.

As for the wp(t)-wAwt title, that gets pretty prolific in LE texts, comparatively speaking. As Leitz et al. mention in the LAGG volumes, it gets tacked-on to many Gods' names in various contexts, from the Eye of Heru to Ma'at-as-Goddess-in-Uraeus-form. None of these tackings-on, however, imply any "sameness" with nor any "feminine counterpart" status to the very clearly male God Wepwawet. All it does is denote a specific kind of "doing," in a specific context. :) Where it concerns Nit, for example, I have seen it occur in the form of wpt-wAwt-nTr, meaning "[She] Who Opens the Ways for [the] God." The God in question is typically the Creator in His Hnw-Barque, namely Amun-Re and the special form of Amun-Re called Kamutef, "Bull of His Mother." Nit is cast as the Mother and Wife of Amun-Re most often in His hymns (but not in any exclusionary sense -- Nit and Amunet in LE temple reliefs and accompanying texts are interchanged with some frequency, implying more sameness between one-another than of either between Amun-Re. This happens at Hebet temple in the Kharga Oasis alone a significant number of times, and this draws substantially from Theban theology. Hebet isn't by any means an isolated incident). In these roles, Nit is very Primordial and very Solar. In order for the God to engender Himself, a feminine Being (in this case, Nit) must be present to bring about the birth. One of the ways to interpret this is that Nit takes on a very Nut and very Mehet-Weret (and the Mehet-Weret association is VERY explicit and plainly-named) type of role. In addition to being like the sky and like the water, She "opens" the sky and the water for Him, in order that He may come forth and proceed.

Tatenen also gets wp- titles and activities ascribed to Him, namely in the Amun hymns I've studied, and in that sense He is the "One Who Divided (wp-n) the Two Lands in Men-nefer/Memphis (tAwy m inb-HD)." That is in no way, shape, or form saying that He is the same as Wepwawet, nor is it saying that what Tatenen does is at all the same as what Wepwawet does at any time or place. :)

As a broad point, I advise people not well-aquainted with the language to avoid assuming that names and titles which appear to be similar to others are functionally "same-same." Egyptian is a very dynamic and multifarious language which was increasingly in its later stages "engineered" to be inaccessible. It's complicated, and sometimes deceptive on purpose, for a variety of reasons both orthographically-aesthetic and theological.

These Goddesses Whose names appear to be "just feminine versions of X" and the secondary, widely-applied terms/epithets need to be very carefully evaluated on a case-by-case basis and in their original contexts. Simply knowing the etymology of a name, and whether it's grammatically masculine or feminine, doesn't tell you even remotely "everything" you need to know. That a God and Goddess may be in some instances presented as a "pair" (like Amun and Amunet) does not mean that They are identical, much less "just versions" of one-another. ;)

I hope this helps! ;D

Senebty!
Sedjfai



5
Em hotep nefer, Mehuti and all! And thank you, Mehuti, for initiating this thread. :D

The first God I ever experienced directly was Set. I was raised around / with monotheistic traditions, but "Singular God" didn't click with me, much as I tried and inasmuch as a child may consciously try. Set first appeared to me when I was about 10 or 11 years old, in what I later came to understand as a vision. In that vision, He spoke to me and embraced me. At that age, I didn't really understand the very intense vision I experienced, and for a number of reasons went through this "edgy" atheistic phase throughout my adolescence. Then I found Norse polytheism for a short while, which didn't fit for me for a lot of reasons but was an important growth period, and for that reason I don't regret it. But, Set being . . . well, Set, He didn't let me ignore Him forever. ;) And I realized that Set had been with me through everything, and would be with me in perpetuity. I remember Hemet (AUS) telling me during my RPD that He "pretty much rushed to the front," and that Set's throws / confirmations were VERY fast. :D

Set opened the way for me to many other Gods, looooong before I got my RPD. In that sense, my First Father "came with" other Gods. For brevity, I won't get into all of those worship-relationships now. There are many and they are (to me, anyway) deep, both Kemetic and broader Ancient Near Eastern. That being said, though, Set is by far the first and foremost in all things for me. It didn't always seem that way (prior to my RPD, that is), but as I've grown and changed, it's become more and more apparent to me, and I couldn't love and adore His firstness and foremostness more. :)

Senebty!
Sedjfai

6
[PUBLIC] Netjer (Our Gods & Goddesses) / Re: Heru-Sepa, Son of Sekhmet
« on: March 28, 2020, 06:54:51 pm »
Em hotep nefer, Mehuti!

The syncretism of Heru and Sepa as a son of Sekhmet occurs on the festival calendar of Edfu Temple (specifically, for 28th of Peret IV). There's not a great deal of cultic information on this particular syncretism, but because of Sekhmet's particular apotropaic qualities and the role of Child Heru in various spells featuring Them both, as well as Sepa's well-evidenced protective/preservative functions, Heru-Sepa's apotropaic quality is reasonably assumed. And, like I said in the post you quoted me from, veritably EVERY God is "invokable" against disease. ;)

There is MUCH more on the (primarily Heliopolitan) Wesir-Sepa syncretism by comparison, which Edward Butler gets into within his Henadology entry for Sepa here.

I hope this helps!

Senebty,
Sedjfai


7
*Duped my edit. Dangit!  ;D

8
Em hotep, Sedjfai!

Thank you so much for this information! I'll definitely need to note down different renderings of Ipet, as I haven't paid close attention to variations before. I'm really fascinated by this particular vulture-headed form She's taken!

(And the very thought of elision gives me a sudden and harrowing flashback to ancient Chinese lit class...I don't want to think about it! ;) )

Thanks again and senebty!

Em hotep nefer, Taynodjmet!

No problem! I'm glad it was helpful.

I need to spend more time with the extant documentation on the Ptolemaic renovations at this temple, but, I'm fairly sure this vulture-headed theophany of Ipet has to do with Nekhent (or Hedj-Nekhen) and Per-Nekhbet, which are related sites mentioned in that section of the inscription which are incorporated within the general area of Modern El-Kab. (If "White Nekhen" as in "NEKHEN-Nekhen," then it's refering to neighboring Hierakonpolis). The vulture-headed hippopotamine form strikes me as being very situational.

A quick note on that Nit standing in front of the first hippopotamine Goddess (also looks like Ipet), too: It's not just any Nit, but Nit-Amunet. You see Her also (separately, but Nit's and Amunet's functional sameness and perceived "interchangeability" is strongly implied, repeatedly) throughout the Late Period through Ptolemaic Period reliefs at Hebet/Hibis Temple in the Kharga Oasis. This is playing upon longstanding trends in Theban+ Theology. :)

Senebty!
Sedjfai


9
Em hotep nefer, Taynodjmet!

Concerning the vulture-headed hippopotamine Goddess: The inscription above Her head reads a variation of Ipet (X1 - H8 - B7C, preceded by Hknw V28 - V31 - N35 - W24, here meaning "acclaimation/thanksgiving [unto]"). That is not the only way you're going to see Ipet's name rendered, there or anywhere else (ESPECIALLY throughout temples and temple-renovations dating to the Graeco-Roman Period), most annoyingly for us "standardization-obsesseures" here in the Modern West. ;) There's a lot of elision going on in Late Egyptian, especially once we get to the Ptolemaic.

ETA: I should note that this particular orthography for Ipet is what Leitz et al. label being Graeco-Roman. That's not to say their word is infallible, because that definitely wouldn't be the first mistake made in the LAGG volumes. But it's something to keep in mind.

I hope that helps!

Senebty,
Sedjfai


10
[PUBLIC] Netjer (Our Gods & Goddesses) / Re: "Netjer" as a Deity
« on: March 08, 2020, 07:36:50 pm »
Em hotep!

i wasn’t at all trying to imply a monotheistic sense, so i apologize if that was what my post read as. monotheism has never been the path for me - i’m very committed to polytheistic views.

my view of it reflects much of your second point, a conjoining of many inter-cooperational forces that create Netjer. even Amun, i suppose in the way that i’m experiencing it and can best explain.

Oh, no! Nothing of the sort. No worries. ☺️ It's just a common-enough criticism on places like reddit and General Kemetic facebook groups that it necessitated some addressing. I'm sure most people have heard that particular meme about the Temple before ever interacting with the members or leadership of the Temple. And it certainly crosses many people's minds when they hear the phrase "One and Many" without having read Hornung first. ;3

11
[PUBLIC] Netjer (Our Gods & Goddesses) / Re: "Netjer" as a Deity
« on: March 08, 2020, 06:45:57 pm »
Em hotep nefer, Redi!

Insofar as ancient texts are concerned, nTr is comparable to Greek usage of their term for "God" : "God" is not meant in some polemical or "sockpuppeting" singular, but in a categorical and [insert name of deity here] set of pluralistic senses. Same deal with Mesopotamian ones. While terms for "God" often appear in the singular in the literature of Classical and ANE religions, their textual and cultural contexts make it abundantly clear that we're dealing with belief in and reverence for many diverse and agent Gods, not just One Alone (or One Who simply dons different "masks").

Kemetic Orthodoxically, insofar as I've come to understand over the course of my eight years with the Temple: in addition to the "insert name here" pluralistic sense, it's meant in the sense of "many, individual Gods acting as a comprehensive, interdependent unit." Namely, in the capacity of Tem / Atum, "The Complete One." It's absolutely not meant "crypto-monotheistically," as some critics outside the Temple have sometimes been known to say. Rather, it's polycentric: the Gods magnify one-another in each Their own unique way, in each Their unique moment. Being individuals does not mean They are isolated and self-limiting, after all. They act-out this polycentricity on very specific scales (Ptah-Sokar-Osiris, Banebdjedet-Ptah-Tatenen, Amun-Min-Kamutef, or Khonsu-in-Thebes-Neferhotep-as-Amun-and-Ra, for example), and on large and generalized ones (Atum as Demiurgos, to borrow a Greek term Egyptians didn't have an analogue for, is pretty large. Atum is more a function of every God in the role of Creator than anything else -- and nobody ever gets Atum as a Parent via the RPD, ostensibly for this and related reasons. Rev. Dr. Siuda is definitely the person to ask for further clarification on that).

I hope this was more helpful than not! 😅

Senebty,
Sedjfai

12
[PUBLIC] Welcome! / Re: Been away so long I can't remember my info.
« on: February 28, 2020, 08:11:08 am »
(Aww yiss, a Set-sibling appears!)

Em hotep nefer and welcome back!

13
[PUBLIC] Netjer (Our Gods & Goddesses) / Re: Anpu as King?
« on: February 25, 2020, 05:53:11 pm »
Em hotep nefer, Redi!

There's a subtle tie-in between Heru-Nedjitef (Horus, Avenger of His Father) and Anpu in the Divine person and role of Iunmutef (Pillar of His Mother). But you're not going to see any explicit statements saying as much, nor anything saying that Heru-Nedjitef and Anpu equate one-another. Rather, it's a matter of context clues and the sorts of roles each God is put in when presented as "Son of Wesir." Iunmutef is more of a function that both Gods share: that of a son taking ritual responsibility for his father upon the latter's death.

Being a sometimes-son of Wesir, and elsewhere the son of Ra directly (Who is the de facto "Universal Lord"), Anpu is connected to the legitimate line of royal succession in His own right. (ETA: Anpu also has occasion to bear the title Khentyamentiu, "Foremost of the Westerners," which became a predominantly Osirian function. Bezenwepwy gets into detail about that on her site, but it does in any case have "Kingship" connotations, especially when we get into later periods of Egyptian Antiquity.)

As for the Sekhemti, there's really no express explanation that's ever required whenever a God is wearing one. That item of royal regalia is the embodiment of the union of Upper and Lower Egypt, and whenever a God (or King) is wearing one, it's expressing that He is the Ruler of the Two Lands -- not just any ruler, THE Ruler. It doesn't categorically mean "this God is wholly and definitively a Heru," though of course Heru-Sema-Tawy (Horus, Uniter of the Two Lands) is a pretty explicit theophany embodying that particular principle and of the Horian/Osirian Cycle re: Kingship Ideology. There are a few other ways Kingship Ideology, namely within the Divine sphere, is expressed and explained across different periods and places and within localized cults in Egyptian Antiquity that don't follow the typical Horian/Osirian model with which we are most familiar through Plutarch and so on. (That said, however, parallels can easily be made between them. These models are non-exclusionary, and they don't exist in vacuums.)

Honestly, you'd be hard-pressed to find a God Who never wears one, and is never called "Ruler of the Two Lands / Two Banks." Even Set (Who, from the Late Period into the Roman Period, overwhelmingly gets a falcon-face, but the accompanying inscriptions are VERY clear about Who it is). And Set's Sekhemti-based compound-crowns get just as crazy in Graeco-Roman Period temple reliefs as various, explicit Heru-Gods' do. ;)

I hope this helps!
Sedjfai

14
Em hotep nefer, Dusk!

I actually published a short paper on this subject. There's a bit more in Ian Robert Taylor's (Phd. U of Birmingham) 2017 dissertation which includes one particular devotional stela I didn't mention, but otherwise shares much of the same information.

I can PM you links to PDFs of both, each uploaded by me and by Dr. Taylor, respectively. I wasn't able to get permissions in time to include photographs from various museums, so my paper is less "shiny" for it, but I can point you to photographs of the items I mention (which Dr. Taylor did not happen to include in his own dissertation).

Senebty!
Sedjfai

15
[PUBLIC] Netjer (Our Gods & Goddesses) / Re: Bes Amulet/Artwork?
« on: January 22, 2020, 10:21:56 am »
Em hotep nefer, Tuaira!

I happen to have an "antiqued" bronze (Sopdu-)Bes/Heka statue I can pass along, although I need to finish making Him a new wood base. I'd be happy to PM you pictures after I get back from the hospital today.

On a related note, (in addition to Yinepu and Aset, already mentioned, Who are Divinities with "Big Heka" across the board) Set and Tutu are historically Gods to petition over nightmares. Set, because He is a Lord of Night and the God of nightmares and nocturnal visions (much in the same spirit that, say, Apollo would be petitioned against plague and pestilence in the Hellenic world, to use a better-known example); Tutu because He is the pacifying Son of various Eye Goddesses in Their wrathful aspect (Nit and Nekhbet in particular, but not only those Ladies).

"Bes," to further qualify (and you can ask Bestekeni for all kinds of material/greater elaboration on this; it's one of her specialties as an Egyptologist and iconographer), is less an individual God and more of a function/form of several Gods and a Modern Egyptological category Egyptians didn't quite use in the way we Moderns do. They're also not to be confused with what are called Sau-figures (which often have the dwarfish "Bes"-body but sometimes feature leonine, jackal, or antiquatedly-called "pygmy" heads, and on one unique headrest, Set-animal heads and crocodile heads. There are one or two articles with accompanying illustrations I can forward you concerning Sau-figures, if you're interested. These spirits do the same job 😉).

Likewise, because the God Shu appears on headrests more than just once, I think it's safe to say that Shu is a nocturnal protector of dreamers, too.

All that being said and in any event, Whomever the petitioner feels "closest" to, they can expect just as much help from that God/dess as from the aforementioned Divinities and class(es) of Spirit. 😙

I hope this helps!
Senebty,
Sedjfai

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