Aset’s Day

Well, it’s been a while. Believe me when I say “crazy” doesn’t cover it. But here I am, and I thought I’d do something, ahem, crazy and post from the middle of the Unyear this year. Exciting, huh?

Photo of an artistic rendering of Aset, probably from someone’s tomb (scanned from one of my books).

I’m in kind of a weird space right now, religiously. I reached out to my spiritual advisor over a problem, and she channeled Sekhmet while giving me an ass-chewing (over something I was already feeling guilty for), which incident proves, among other things, that Sekhmet is not omniscient (but then I don’t think She ever claimed to be).

I learned that there was such a thing as too much compassion, and with too little compassion you could watch your best friend commit suicide.

All of this affected my enthusiasm for the Unyear this year; I let the first two days pass without doing Rite, although I did ad-lib some prayers to both Wesir and Heru-Wer.

But Aset is in my corner, as always, encouraging me to stay positive and not to let my experience with Sekhmet affect my faith. The previous time I did Rite to Her, She said to keep working on my boundaries and my chakras, which I am doing as I can. (My life is still kind of crazy, but not as bad as it was.)

I wish there were a year reference that I could use. It’d be nice if I could say “Happy Kemetic New Year 5118” or something, but that wasn’t how the ancient Egyptians calculated the year. They based it on the length of the current pharaoh’s reign, so they would record a particular day as “Day 29 of the fourth month of Shemu in the 24th year of the reign of ___________”, for instance. There being no pharaoh anymore…you see my problem.

(There are the Kemetic Orthodox folks, who consider the head of their temple a sort of pharaoh who only does religious stuff; as you probably know, the pharaoh in ancient Egypt was also the head of the government — safe to say that was his most obvious job — in addition to being the head of the temple. But currently I belong to a Kemetic Traditionalist temple, and we don’t have a single head like that. We have two Reverends who lead our temple, but they are not called “Nisut,” which is the term the Kemetic Orthodox people use.)

So in two days, I will be celebrating the Kemetic New Year, also the first day of the first month of Akhet. The ancient Egyptians only had three seasons: flood (Akhet), planting (Peret) and harvest (Shemu). (They probably don’t get much in the way of winter weather.) And the ancient Egyptians, being the badass astronomers they were, noticed that flood season always coincided with the heliacal rising of the star Sirius, which they called Sopdet, who was also one of their deities. So all they had to do was calculate when Sopdet would rise, and they knew when the Nile would flood and bring all that rich silt that made their harvests so bountiful.

So, the new year. Another set of resolutions to break. Awesome. 🙂

I’m kidding, of course. With the New Year, I’ll try to recommit to following the path of Ma’at, the divine and just order of the universe, the path of honesty and compassion toward our fellow humans — the path we are all called to walk, no matter our religion or lack thereof.

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