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Author Topic: About the Sistrum.  (Read 2547 times)

About the Sistrum.
« on: February 22, 2013, 05:37:16 am »
About the Sistrum....

I have a strange compulsion to ask why this wonderful instrument isn't mentioned in the Senut(at least not within the Prayer Book)? I would assume it is considered an optional tool for spiritual sound. Drawing the attention of Netjer and driving way unwanted forces and manifestations. It sees associated with both Hethert and Bast. Though from what I have seen the relationship with Bast and the instrument is lesser than Hethert's (Who's face is often depicted upon the Sistrum).

If I were to buy or construct one of these, where then would I use it in the rituals? I would think it would be very early on, perhaps just before or after lighting the shrine lamp?

Any thoughts and comments are welcome.
« Last Edit: February 22, 2013, 05:40:59 am by Yamanu »

Offline Shefytbast

  • W'ab Priest - Lay Clergy
  • Country: 00
Re: About the Sistrum.
« Reply #1 on: February 22, 2013, 07:47:52 am »
When I use a sistrum as part of Senut (which I don't always, but sometimes I do), it's during the personal devotions part of the rite that follows the offerings. ^_^

Though it just occurs to me that it might be neat to shake the sistrum as one approaches the shrine....

This is only a guess, but one reason the sistrum might not be officially included in the rite is that it's a more specialized piece of equipment. Keeping the required materials of the rite very simple and basic makes it easier for everyone to practice it. (The majority of people can buy or repurpose bowls, candles, incense, salt and baking soda, etc.)

Shefytbast | daughter of Bast, beloved of Nut, Amun-Ra, and Wenut
Heri-sesheta Bast | Divinations
Blog: Gold of the Valley, Lapis of the River

Re: About the Sistrum.
« Reply #2 on: February 22, 2013, 08:09:34 am »
Yes, I thought that might be the case. Still, i find the allure to it very interesting. it is not so different ringing a gong or sounding a bell, I've read it was also common practice in Kemet to snap the fingers to achieve the same effect.

Re: About the Sistrum.
« Reply #3 on: February 22, 2013, 08:55:15 am »
I use a gourd rattle that I made for that purpose, but eventually I'll make a sistrum, I think.

I do a little chant I made up for my 'musical' deities. There's a three-beat plus rest pattern mentioned for Isis mystery cults in Apuleius (180c.e.)

... for Bast
... and Hethert
... and Ihy
... and Bes
... and any
... of the other
... netjeru
... who like music
... dua!
... dua!
... dua!
... dua!
nekhtet! (while doing a constant shake)

I'd agree with Shefyt- there are all sorts of things that might be "nice to have," but it's more important to have the essential ones and actually do the ritual. :)

« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 pm by Helmsman_of_Yinepu »
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Offline Sedjemes

  • Semer-Wati
  • Shemsu-Ankh
  • Country: us
Re: About the Sistrum.
« Reply #4 on: February 22, 2013, 08:56:00 am »
Em hotep

We draw a distinction between rituals performed on behalf of the state, the nation/community of faith, and rites performed in the privacy of one's own home. State rituals (those would be the rituals performed in the temples, to which the general public were not available) at various times made use of sistra, drums, and other sound devices.

The Senut is specifically designed as a household, private-at-home devotion for all Kemetic Orthodox, just as in antiquity the general public performed their own devotions in their homes at their household shrines. Not everyone had access to sistra or even drums.

I would point out that rites and private devotions can be deeply and richly profound without use of any devices other than hand-clapping or finger-snapping (I say this only so that anyone who as yet cannot make use of sistra or drums etc will not feel they cannot approach the gods in worship). Sometimes simplicity is as potent as anything.
Khenmetaset ("Aset Gladdens")
Sedjemes ("She listens")
Daughter of Aset-Serqet, Meryt Ra her Sekhmet
Heri-Sesheta Aset-Serqet

Re: About the Sistrum.
« Reply #5 on: February 22, 2013, 09:02:21 am »

Re: About the Sistrum.
« Reply #6 on: February 22, 2013, 09:06:25 am »
I watched a Kemetic Invocation to Sekhmet recently, and found it quite powerful. She shook a rattle through the entire time, i figure this is simply a personal choice. You use what you have, often if you find you need something it will turn up somewhere, at least that is my personal experience.

Re: About the Sistrum.
« Reply #7 on: February 22, 2013, 09:12:17 am »
I have made maraca out of rice, garlic, Myrrh, Frankincense, and Catnip before. Calling on the powers of garlic, perhaps Natron, and Rice for purity, and catnip lends its association to Bast for added power.

Offline Tasen

  • Shemsu
Re: About the Sistrum.
« Reply #8 on: May 17, 2013, 10:55:41 am »
Just found this thread.  I would love to do this.  How did you make it?
Sat Aset-Serqet meryt Amun her Sekhmet-Hethert

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Offline Darytessekhmet

  • Rev. Daryt - Ordained Clergy - Moderator (Prayer Requests Forums)
  • Country: us
Re: About the Sistrum.
« Reply #9 on: May 20, 2013, 09:32:25 am »
That sounds like a yummy smelling maraca!
Daughter of Sekhmet and Nisut Hekatawy(AUS)
W'abet Nekhen sehotep.tu ib-es yim-ef, The Shrine in Which Her Heart is Appeased

Her Father controls Sekhmet, Sekhmet subdues evil, Sekhmet controls Her temper
Even small rivers keep the lands green and the oceans wet.


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