Setken: Yesterday, Today and the Future: Kemetic Re-Manifestation

My friend Setken, one of my fellow Kemetic Interfaith Network bloggers, wrote an interesting post that posed several questions and invited comment. Take a look! I’m putting my responses here.

I think we Kemetics are making something very new. We can’t help but do it, because re-creating the past is an impossibility. But what are we creating? Do we think about it at all?

I think of the post-Medieval Renaissance. People looked back to Classical Greece and Rome, read and  translated the old texts, were inspired, and changed the world. The ones who actually studied, thought, and debated on how things could be put into practice were the ones that forged ahead. It took more than just saying “Yay, ancient Greeks!” Medieval culture wasn’t the total wasteland we’re sometimes led to believe, but still. They changed everything, including art and music. For example, they read the ancient descriptions of the staggering impact of music on emotions, worked to re-create it, and invented Baroque opera and “harmony”, among other things.

I think the more we understand, the better we’ll build. There are things in polytheism that seem to make it more suitable to a harmonious future world than the “One God, Mine Is The Only Way” approach. It’s one of the reasons I’m interested in writing Kemetic Science Fiction. :)

I do think the Netjeru change. If we look at Egyptian history, their roles changed enormously over time, sometimes for political reasons. Part of my fascination with “disregarded” Netjeru is thinking of ways that their connections to this time and the future might be strengthened. Selket/Serqet being one example. At a shallow level, she protects against scorpion stings. It’s less useful to many of us than a goddess of Things Stuck In Drawers. Some people expand Serqet’s influence to emotional poison, but that seems a bit tenuous to me. Looking at the henadology article on her, it seems like she was even more strongly linked with breathing in the beginning, and the terrestrial scorpion aspect was added later. Might Serqet be a goddess who might be helpful with Asthma and other bronchial problems? It’s a horrid condition, and it can rule your life when every minute is a struggle to draw breath. Let’s see if she can be persuaded to help!

My problem with UPG isn’t that I don’t like it. A person who offers chocolate bunnies to the Netjeru shouldn’t throw stones, after all! My complaint is when UPG buries everything else in a tsunami of whim. Warboar wrote an excellent post on the subject, and it cuts to the heart of “Where are we going?”

On the subject of the Negative Confessions, it’s another example of people misunderstanding what they are, and taking them for the ten commandments. That goes back to the same problem of only looking at the surface, of not knowing what they’re for. There is no standard set of confessions! I’d be really interested in seeing if ANY particular confession is in every copy.

The one I find most inspiring these days is:

“I have not caught fish with bait made of the bodies of the same kind of fish.” -Negative Confessions- Papyrus of Nu

 

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3 thoughts on “Setken: Yesterday, Today and the Future: Kemetic Re-Manifestation

  1. Has anyone done a post on what the negative confessions were for?

    Also, what does “I have not caught fish with bait made of the bodies of the same kind of fish.” mean to you?

    Anyway, great post!

  2. A very thought provoking post I have to say your blog is a pleasure to read! In my view the gods themselves are timeless and in themselves don’t change. However the world itself changes constantly which as gods they must understand so I think that yes ancient tenets do need to be updated to work with our world today and our modern faith while remaining true to the gods themselves. As to UPG well that’s a bit of a bug bear for me. I don’t doubt the interaction of the gods but I do think that people can get extremely carried away with what they want to happen and the answers that they want which is where you end up with a lot of squeeing silliness about gods being unable to cope with sweetie wrappers. Strange thing UPG. But then that’s just my opinion!

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