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Author Topic: Human influence on Netjer associations, or no?  (Read 6207 times)

Human influence on Netjer associations, or no?
« on: November 26, 2010, 01:27:14 pm »
First off let me say thank you to everyone for the warm welcomes to the boards.  I have been enjoying reading through the many interesting and informative posts here, and have decided to post a topic myself.

There is a question that has been tugging at me for some time now that I thought I would throw out to all of you, to perhaps lend me a more learned perspective.

When it comes to the various and varied associations of the Gods there is a great deal of complexity.  Some of the Netjer have a narrow, specific domain they influence, say Heqet for instance, while others like Aset for example touch on a great deal of important aspects of our faith.

All of that being said, is it safe for me assume that some associations some of the Gods have been attributed, could be linked to the ancient priests and temple workers tacking on various associations to the Gods of their specific temples as time went on and various other cults grew in popularity?

For example I will turn to Ptah, ancient God of creation, self-made, lord of artisans, etc.  Then of course later we see Ptah associated with the sun at dawn just as it passes the horizon.  He is written about in some ancient texts as luminous, whose eyes are bright, et al.  Is this something merely for the benefet of maintaining relevnce during a time of a growing solar cult? Or rather the complex interconnectedness of the netjeru?  Also with Ptah, we see him later linked with Osiris/Wesir, partially due to Ptah's part in the opening of the mouth ceremony.  I suspect however that again we may see a closer relationship due to the incredible influence of Osiris/Wesir and the followers of Ptah wanting to maintain significance in the entirety of the ancient kemetic landscape.  Of course we also see the opposite with Set being villified when he is worshipped by invading occupiers.  There are other examples of changing associations of course, but I am most familiar with these in particular.

So I suppose my question is whether the KO make any attempt to boil down the true nature of the Netjer?  Finding a way to seperate possible mortal influences from the divine?  Or if these various aspects are simply a symbol of the complex nature of the living kemetic faith?

I realize this is not an easy question but again I just thought I would put it out there to hear if there were any helpful comments from more veteran practitioners.  Thank you for your time and comments.        

Re: Human influence on Netjer associations, or no?
« Reply #1 on: November 26, 2010, 02:10:31 pm »
Em-Hotep-Rh'ekh,


This is something that I too have found very fascinating in my studies of this beautiful religion. When I was younger, I did not truly understand the complexity of the Netjeru, nor did I fully  realize the similarities/connections between them. Back then, the Netjeru to me, where everything and anything.

This is still true for me today, though now I can look into their 'being' and distinguish what aspect of them is them, and which aspects may have come from rising cults. You example of Ptah is interesting; especially the connection with Ra, because in one Theban theology, Ptah is connected to Amun as well to form a certain trinity as Amun-Ptah-Ra (I believe :confused: ) This I think came from a point of view that in the beginning, Amun was the force that caused creation to happen; Ra, being Atum, was the light which separated the darkness of Nun, and Ptah was embodied in the actual Mound on which Atum was born. Also, I feel Ptah being connected to Usir (Osiris) is due in part to the rising of his cult in early Egyptian history. Ptah was lord of Men-Nefer, and when the Usirian cult began to rise in prominence in the region around Men-Nefer, the priests of his cult needed to find a way to keep Ptah in importance; thus Ptah became to Lord who crafted the adaze of fine bronze used to open Usir's mouth.

Too can I go on about how Ra is connected with many of the Netjeru; based on how his cult rose to such prominence in ancient Kemet. This (his rising in power) makes perfect sense though. The sun dominated the country of Egypt, shinning brighter there than anywhere else. The people understood the importance of the sun and thus Ra became a mighty deity; becoming connected with many of the other Netjeru. I feel many of the 'lesser' cults throughout Kemet openly accepted a connection of their Netjer with Ra, so that their Netjer would not become a lesser; or, would become a very powerful Netjer: Amun-Ra.  

Of course I am no priest, and most of my views on the connections between the Netjeru are a bit 'different' than most. I cannot answer your question whether or not the connections between Netjer are simplified in KO, or if they are all justifiable. What I mean by this is that I cannot say if the majority of the connections between Netjeru came from rivaling cults throughout Kemetic history, or whether they came from the pure nature of the Netjeru themselves. I honestly believe more in the latter idea; though, I do except the fact that most connections were the work of priests trying to 'pimp' their Netjer ;) … okay, trying to make their beloved Netjer more magnificent.

Senabty-Rh'ekh
Ne'sip - Thii - Mu - Pah - Ma'at
(Never Wander From The Truth)

Hk'hk - Mu - Th'n - Ib - Gh'ert - Netjer
(Keep Netjer In Your Heart Always)

Nin - Mesin'i - I'usi - Sa'ahu...
(No-one is born a sage) - IOPH

Offline Mesetibes

  • W'ab (priest)
  • Country: ca
Re: Human influence on Netjer associations, or no?
« Reply #2 on: November 26, 2010, 08:29:13 pm »
Hotep Follower of Ptah,

I think alot of the nature of Netjer changes, and thusly associated aspects of Netjer therefore changes, depending on the time period. Names wax and wane through Ancient History, and some gain the aspects of others, while other still get their own branch of things to look over.

Look at Aten for instance. Aten didn't really gain any sort of favour or primary worship forcus until the reign of Akenaten. But we today within Kemetic Orthodox do recognise the Name as a legitimate form of Netjer.

I also have the thought that particular Names will appeal and communicate with us because those qualities that said Name possesses are something that is more easily understood by us. Not so much of a human influence on God, per se, more like God influence on humans. What's the point of being worshipped if you're not understood and your followers are also confused? This is not to say that They don't like to give us monkey wrenches or Brain Bendies once in a while, those things force us to think. And in known Their wishes, we in turn begin to know about ourselves.

Anyway, just my thoughts on the matter. Your milage may vary. :-D

Senebty!
~Maret
Rev. Mesetibes
Sat Heqat, meryt Djehuti her Ptah her Heru-wer
Fedw Diviner
2011 Wep Ronpet Frog Princess/
W'abet Nekhen Sha'a Sha'at Imef

Offline Tanebet

  • W'ab (priest) - Kherep Sebau (Education Director), Semer-Wati
  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Country: 00
Re: Human influence on Netjer associations, or no?
« Reply #3 on: November 27, 2010, 03:58:26 am »
Em Hotep,

what is the "true nature" of Netjer?
Personally I think that it is somehow presumptious of us humans to even try to understand the true nature of Netjer. Would we even have the ability to comprehend the Divine Power as a whole? I couldn't but think about the movies "Dogma" and "Raiders of the Lost Ark" where seeing or hearing God would result in your death.
For me Netjer is too vast, too compacious for us to understand. We can only understand bits and pieces and every attempt of us to understand and explain Netjer is always influenced by our human imagination, our human experience and our limitations...because yes, we are human and as humans we do use human standards to explain things we do not know.

Senebty
Tanebet
Tanebetheru "Heru's Lordship"
Sat Heru Sa Aset her Nisut (AUS), Meryt Ra-Heru-akhety her Heru-Behedety
Heri-Sesheta Heru-Sa-Aset

This is what I was born to: to live, to love, to know, to change and embrace the infinite.
Normandi Ellis: "Awakening Osiris"

Offline Rev. Shefyt

  • W'ab (priest)
  • Country: us
Re: Human influence on Netjer associations, or no?
« Reply #4 on: November 27, 2010, 07:52:57 am »
Any perception of the divine is going to be filtered through mortal influences, since we are, after all, mortal. We look to the past for insight into how the Names were seen then, and we look to where we are now for how the Names appear to us in our modern understanding. Do we find Ptah's later solar associations useful in, pardon the pun, illuminating our understanding of the God? if so, then it's just another frame through which to glimpse a fragment of the Divine, and not an accretion that conceals His true nature. As Tanebet says, His true nature is going to be beyond all of our definitions anyway.

That said, there are things that "ring true" between both ancient and modern, and things that don't. (Like Bast as the goddess of lesbians and marijuana, for example. :grin: )

I think that, ultimately, most of us here are more interested in living by Netjer's light than in staring into the sun.

Senebty,

Shefyt

Rev. Shefyt | daughter of Bast, beloved of Nut, Amun-Ra, and Wenut
Beginners Class Instructor | Heri-sesheta Bast | Divinations
Blog: Gold of the Valley, Lapis of the River

Offline Enbibibast

  • Shemsu
  • Country: 00
Re: Human influence on Netjer associations, or no?
« Reply #5 on: November 27, 2010, 03:49:06 pm »
Quote from: Shefytbast

That said, there are things that "ring true" between both ancient and modern, and things that don't. (Like Bast as the goddess of lesbians and marijuana, for example. :grin: )

Hotep Shefyt,

Going a little off topic: I asked our Mom about that one day in shrine, and She told me that while She has no issues with either, She certainly doesn't hold domain over them, and finds the association a bit silly and amusing. :grin:
Enbibibast | Bibi
Daughter of Bast
Beloved of | Wepwawet-Yinepu | Djehuty | Sekhmet-Hethert | Heru-wer |
Tumblr

Offline Blissi

  • Remetj
Re: Human influence on Netjer associations, or no?
« Reply #6 on: November 29, 2010, 03:57:13 pm »
Hehehe, I have this image of Bast in my head giggling to herself when all these little wiccany myths start popping her way.

Offline Rev. Sehedjef

  • Semer-Wati
  • W'ab (priest)
  • Country: us
Re: Human influence on Netjer associations, or no?
« Reply #7 on: November 29, 2010, 08:22:52 pm »
Quote from: Shefytbast
sniped...Bast as the goddess of lesbians and marijuana :grin: )

 


I can just picture when asked for a comment regarding this in Shrine, Bast lazily replying "...don't Bogart that joint, man...." from a room full of pot smoke.  :grin:

Imti
Rev. Sehedjef
(He shines with the beauty of the truth of his Mothers)
Priest of Nebt-het and Serqet
Beloved of Ptah and Tasenetnofret
revdwinterfeldt@kemet.org

Re: Human influence on Netjer associations, or no?
« Reply #8 on: November 30, 2010, 07:44:40 am »
Haaaahaaaa Imti!!! Lol.
Timu

Sat Aset, meryt Wepwawet her Renenutet


Offline Taysatwesir

  • Shemsu
  • Country: us
Re: Human influence on Netjer associations, or no?
« Reply #9 on: November 30, 2010, 09:07:24 am »
I like this topic for instance my father Ptah-Sokar-Wesir started out as Ptah. :)

Quote
As early as the Old Kingdom, the god Ptah of Memphis formed close links with the funerary god of the city, Sokar, leading to the creation of the god Ptah-Sokar. In later times this god also acquired the characteristics of the god Osiris, resulting in the god Ptah-Sokar-Osiris.

http://www.globalegyptianmuseum.org/glossary.aspx?id=301
Taysatwesir
This daughter of Wesir
sat Wesir as Ptah-Sokar-Wesir
meryt Mut, Ma'ahes, Bast, and Hethert-Sekhmet

Offline Seshagemseger

  • Divined Remetj
Re: Human influence on Netjer associations, or no?
« Reply #10 on: December 08, 2010, 04:04:07 pm »
Quote from: Follower_of_Ptah
When it comes to the various and varied associations of the Gods there is a great deal of complexity.  Some of the Netjer have a narrow, specific domain they influence, say Heqet for instance, while others like Aset for example touch on a great deal of important aspects of our faith.


For the most part, I would say that the focus of such Names isn't actually as narrow as it may first seem -- it's just that the symbols and associations are very specific, and/or those Names are just not as well known.


Quote from: Follower_of_Ptah
All of that being said, is it safe for me assume that some associations some of the Gods have been attributed, could be linked to the ancient priests and temple workers tacking on various associations to the Gods of their specific temples as time went on and various other cults grew in popularity?


I think so.  In fact, those sorts of changes in associations are still going on today.

While I don't believe Netjer is completely static and unchanging, I think the phenomenon of gods taking on "new" titles or roles or associations does not reflect a change in the character or essential nature of that god, but in how people connect with them and understand them.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 pm by Seshagemseger »
Child of Seshat
Beloved of Hethert, Serqet, and Shu
seshat.org / Facebook / LiveJournal

Re: Human influence on Netjer associations, or no?
« Reply #11 on: December 09, 2010, 10:30:18 am »
Quote from: Seshagemseger
While I don't believe Netjer is completely static and unchanging, I think the phenomenon of gods taking on "new" titles or roles or associations does not reflect a change in the character or essential nature of that god, but in how people connect with them and understand them.


Yes, thank you.  I like the way you worded that.  

Offline Mesetibes

  • W'ab (priest)
  • Country: ca
Re: Human influence on Netjer associations, or no?
« Reply #12 on: December 09, 2010, 01:59:46 pm »
 
Quote from: Follower_of_Ptah
Quote from: Seshagemseger
While I don't believe Netjer is completely static and unchanging, I think the phenomenon of gods taking on "new" titles or roles or associations does not reflect a change in the character or essential nature of that god, but in how people connect with them and understand them.


Yes, thank you.  I like the way you worded that.  


*sighs*

-_-

~Maret
Rev. Mesetibes
Sat Heqat, meryt Djehuti her Ptah her Heru-wer
Fedw Diviner
2011 Wep Ronpet Frog Princess/
W'abet Nekhen Sha'a Sha'at Imef

 


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