Category Archives: Rituals

Sanctuary

“Every good and pure thing that the sky gives, the earth creates, the inundation brings, on which the god/desses live.”

The sanctuary was the most special and important part of the temple. It was a very dark and mysterious place. Only the high priest/ess and the pharaoh could ever enter the sanctuary.

In the middle of the sanctuary stood the shrine where the statue of the god or goddess was kept. The ancient Egyptians believed that during rituals the god or goddess would enter the statue.

Abu_Simbel_temple,_four_statues_of_divinities_in_sanctuary
Abu Simble Temple – the Divinities

Guidance: We shall gather in a sacred space to discover what the lunar and solar energies will be for the coming year. Through the process of meditation, and offerings, we will seek clarity and guidance as well as give thanks to the gifts and insights provided during the previous year. We shall create and manifest sanctuary this year. It is time to co-create a true home.

Invoking the Goddess

I offer to and invoke Aset the goddess of love, fertility and motherhood. She is the devoted wife, mother and protector of the poor and enslaved. Aset gives a voice to the voiceless and all that she represents is needed for the progression of humanity.

We offer to Aset!

We offer to Hathor!

Let us Celebrate this day and honor the Goddesses of love and righteousness!

Prayer to Ra

Oh RA

You God of Life, you Lord of Love,
All men live when you shine.

You are the crowned King of the Gods.
The Goddess Aset embraces you,
and enfolds you in all seasons.
Those who follow you sing to you with joy,
and they bow down their foreheads to the earth
In gratitude for your radiant blessings.

Oh RA, You the King of Truth, the Lord of Eternity,
The Prince of Everlastingness,
You Sovereign of all Gods,
You God of Life, you Creator of Eternity,
You Maker of Heaven.
All the Gods rejoice at your rising.

Oh RA, You giver of all life,
The Earth rejoices when it sees your golden rays
People who have been long dead
come forward with cries of joy
to behold your beauties every day.
You go forth each day over Heaven and Earth.

Oh RA God of Life, you Lord of Love,
All men live when you shine.

~ Prayer to Ra from the tomb of Shep-en-Mut (25th dynasty)

sunhand

Solstice, the Re-Birth of Horus

Over five thousand years ago Ancient Egyptians celebrated the re-birth of the sun at this time of year. The midwinter festival celebrated the birth of Horus, son of Aset.

The feast days were for 12 days, to reflect the 12 divisions in their zodiac sun calendar.  Ancient Egyptians decorated with greenery and especially with 12 palm shoots as a symbol of the completed year. It was believed that a palm put forth a shoot each month.

I have not kept track of the frequency of our palm shoots, but perhaps the temple cats know.

Temple cats
Blessings of the light

 

Karnak Temple was built in alignment with the Solstice in order to focus light on a shrine to the Sun god.

The Karnak Temple
Karnak Temple
Solstice in karnak
Solstice at Karnak

 

 

 

Flame of Protection

Intense, destructive fires are all around us here in California. When meditating upon these flames, I found a  protection prayer – call it spell – to protect those “kings” (and queens), who are fighting these fires; and to protect those “kings” (and queens), whose homes and animals are at risk. Furthermore,  let us send safety and healing to those whose homes and animals have perished in the flames.

Sacred Flame

“Lighting the Flame” was a daily ritual in the ancient temples. At daybreak the priests would light the sacred fire just before the sun – Ra – rose in the east. The sacred flame of Ra is warm and life-giving.  Fire has been a “savior” to human-kind, providing warmth and light, protecting us from the dark and cold.

Prayer for Protection

O Sekhmet, Eye of Ra, Great of Flame,
Lady of protection who envelops her creator,
Come towards the King, Nb-twy (Lord of the Two Lands) . . .
Protect him and preserve him from all arrows,
And every evil of this year . . .

O Sekhmet, who fills the ways with blood,
Who slaughters to the limits of all she sees,
Come towards the living image, the Living Falcon,
Protect him, and preserve him from all evil,
And every arrow of this year.

Triad of Ramesses II with Amun and Ma’at

Hathor’s Mirror Full Moon Ritual

The full moon has long been considered a symbol of wisdom and intuition. We feel its connection every month, when it lights the night sky. Water is also linked to the changing face of the moon and the tides.

The last moon phase of the year is the Long Nights Moon in December, also called Raven or Big Winter Moon, depending on where you live. This is often a time of introspection and self discovery, as you evaluate the trials and tribulations that you’ve endured over the past year. This is a time to re-evaluate where you want to go and who you want to be in the coming twelve month; this is a season of adaptation and change. Full Moon/Mirror of Hathor scrying magic can be very helpful to see the possibilities.
silu

To begin, create an outdoor altar with seasonal items like holly branches and pine cones, perhaps use a small pine, or other tree, to be the center of your altar. Burn some cinnamon, frankincense, or a winter solstice incense of your choice. Go out to your altar at night with a bowl or cauldron full of water, and do some moonlight scrying. This is particularly helpful if you know you need to make some changes, but aren’t sure how to get started. The Egyptian “Book of the Dead” contains references to Hathor’s magic mirror, used to see the future.

If you can’t perform this ritual on the night of the full moon, the night immediately before or immediately after is just as acceptable.

In addition to a clear sky and a full moon, you will need the following items:

A table or some sort of flat work space
A dark bowl
A pitcher containing enough water to fill the bowl

If you live near a natural body of water such as a pond or lake, you can perform scrying with these instead.
A journal or notepad to write in, as well as a pen

Sit or stand comfortably. Begin by closing your eyes, and attuning your mind to the energy around you. Feel the soft earth under your feet. Hear the rustling of the wind in the trees. Breathe in the scent of grass and earth that lingers in the air. Raise your arms out to your sides, palms facing up, and feel the energy of the moon above you.

Take some time to gather that energy. It’s a pull, a palpable sensation that we can feel if we just take the time to look for it. Feel that silver power above you, and recognize your connection to it, and to the Divine.

When you are ready to begin scrying, open your eyes. Notice the night all around you. You may feel an unusual sense of clarity and alertness. There is no need to be  concerned, it’s just lunar energy at work. Raise the pitcher in one hand, holding it over the bowl. As you do, visualize wisdom and guidance within the water. As you pour the water into the bowl, from the pitcher, see the energy of the moon charging that water. Recognize that this water can show you the mysteries of the moon. Remember Aset and Hathor are both Goddesses of the Moon and Stars.

When the bowl is full, position yourself so that you can see the moon’s light reflected directly into the water. Stare into the water, looking for patterns, symbols or pictures. You may see images moving, or perhaps even words forming.

Thoughts may come spontaneously into your head that seem to have nothing at all to do with anything. Write everything down. Spend as much time as you like gazing into the water,  it may be just a few minutes, or even an hour. Stop when you begin to feel restless, or if you are getting distracted by mundane thoughts.

When you are finished gazing into the water, make sure you have recorded everything you saw, thought and felt during your scrying session. Messages often come to us from other realms and we may not recognize them. If a bit of information doesn’t make sense, sit on it for a few days and let your unconscious mind process it. Chances are it will make sense eventually. It’s also possible that you could receive a message that’s meant for someone else; if something doesn’t seem to apply to you, think about friends or family whom it might be meant for.

Afterwards the ritual, you can leave your water out overnight to charge it even more, or you can pour it away into your garden as an offering.

It is good to be referent and give thanks for the Divine guidance.

fullmoon

Invoking Hathor for the Long Night Moon

Visualize the goddess Hathor standing before you holding Her mirror, reflective side out. Go outside imagine Her in a sacred natural space (or a deck, patio, etc.). She is protecting your space with Her sacred mirror.

Be sure that your intentions are compassionate, true and just. You must always seek to serve and bring about the highest good, and wish for the best possible outcome for all concerned.

O my Lady, come and protect me,
give me abundant life.
Make me healthy
on the east side of the sky,
So that I will be established
in the horizon.

O my Lady, come and restore me,
O Come! Lady of the Sun Disk!
Keep me safely
on the east side of the sky,
So that I will be protected
in the horizon.
O, Come, Lady of the Mirror, O Come!
For millions of years you
have sailed in the Sun Barque of your Father without ceasing.
As you ride in the boat of your Father, so,
I pray for happiness!
I pray for prosperity!
I pray for health!
I pray for protection!
May they flow from you
without ceasing!

~ Based on a hymn to Hathor found in the private tomb of Kheruef, Royal Scribe and First Herald of Amenhotep III, West Bank at Luxor, 18th Dynasty.

After asking Hathor for guidance and protection it is always good and right to thank Her.

 

Saqqara – The Pyramid Texts

Not far to the south of Giza is the huge necropolis of Saqqara, which lies within an ancient city called Inbu-Hedj (the White Fortress).  Saqqara does not have Egypt’s largest pyramids, however it has some of the most ancient tombs and pyramids including the Step Pyramid of Djoser which is often considered the first true pyramid. Saqqara has more royal pyramids than Giza and within these ancient pyramids are the first known inscriptions of the “Pyramid Texts.”  Many of the tombs at Saqqara date to more than 5000 years ago.

Saqqara
Pyramid of Djoser behind the ruined Pyramid of Unas

The Pyramid Texts are believed to be the oldest collection of magical and religious spells from ancient Egypt. This collection forms the basis of much of the later religious theology and literature of ancient Egypt. The writings were eventually separated and categorized evolving into the Book of the Dead.

Saqqara
Inside Pyramid of Unas

The Utterances of the Pyramid Texts are vast; containing various topics, some complex and some simple. The following is a rather charming prayer to recite while smudging or lighting incense:
The fire is laid, the fire shines;
The incense is laid on the fire, the incense shines.
Your perfume comes to me, O Incense;
May my perfume come to you, O Incense.
Your perfume comes to me, you gods;
May my perfume come to you, you gods.
May I be with you, you gods;
May you be with me, you gods.
May I live with you, you gods;
May you live with me, you gods.
I love you, you gods;
May you love me, you gods!

Pyramid Texts: Utterance 269

 

Orion’s Belt, Sothis, and the Pyramids of Giza

As we look to the sky during this time of year, we see the constellation Orion directly above at midnight.

orion_spinelli_full
Orion was to the ancient Egyptians (and to many of us) the most distinctive of all the constellations in the night sky. It rises directly before the adjacent star Sirius. Orion was imagined as being swallowed at dawn by the Underworld but had the power to emerge again into the night sky.

The three Pyramids of Giza are a perfect reproduction of the three stars of Orion’s belt. Like the pyramids, the three stars of Orion are not perfectly aligned, the smallest of them is slightly offset to the east. All three are slanted in a southwesterly direction. Their orientation to the Nile recreates Orion’s orientation to the Milky Way. The layout of the pyramids, and their relative sizes were a deliberate design plan. The pyramids were a replica of Heaven on Earth (The constellation of Orion).

The god Sah and his consort, Sopdet, better known by her Greek name, Sothis, personified the constellation of Orion and the bright, first magnitude star Sirius. Their son was Horus Spd, another astral deity. They came to be viewed as manifestations of Osiris and Isis.

In the Pyramid Texts, Sah/Osiris is called “father of the gods.” The deceased king is said to enter the sky “In the name of the Dweller in Orion, with a season in the sky and a season on earth.” In these early texts the king is told, “You shall reach the sky as Orion, your soul shall be as effective as Sothis.” Orion (Sah/Osiris) is said to row towards the stars in a boat, where he is surrounded by stars as he sails across the sky in a papyrus skiff.

With great astronomical precision, the pyramids were created to serve as the pharaoh’s gateway to the stars.

The_dawn_of_civilization-_Egypt_and_Chaldaea_(1897)_(14761135924)

“O King, you are this great star, the companion of Orion, who traverses the sky with Orion, who navigates the Duat with Osiris; you ascend from the East of the sky, being renewed at your due season…….”
~ Pyramid Texts Utterance 466

Feast Day of Sekhmet and Bastet

According to the Cairo Calendar, adjusted for the changes in our modern sky as Sirius, the Sothis Star, rises in August rather than mid-June in Ancient Times, today is the feast day of Sekhmet Bast Ra.

We therefore reflect upon the 164th Chapter of The Book of the Dead in which prayer and homage is made: 

Homage to Thee, O Sekhmet-Bast-Ra,

Thou Mistress of the Gods, Thou bearer of wings,

Lady of the crowns of the South and of the North,

Only One, Sovereign of Her Father,

Superior to whom the Gods cannot be,

Thou Mighty One of the enchantments in the Boat of Millions of Years,

Thou who art preeminent,

Who risest in the seat of silence,

Mistress and Lady of the Tomb,

Mother in the Horizon of Heaven,

Gracious One, Beloved,

Destroyer of Rebellion,

Offerings are in Thy grasp,

And Thou art standing in the bows of the boat of Thy Divine Father to overthrow the Fiend.

Thou hast placed Ma’at in the bows of His boat.

Praise be to Thee, O Lady,

Who art mightier than the Gods,

And words of adoration rise to Thee from the Eight Gods of Heliopolis.

The living souls who are in their chests praise Thy mystery.

O Thou who art Their Mother, Thou Source from whom They sprang,

Who makest for Them a place of repose in the hidden underworld,

Who makest sound their bones and preservest Them from terror,

Who makest Them strong in the abode of everlastingness,

Who preservest Them from the evil chamber of the souls of the god-of-the-terrible-face who is among the company of the Gods.

Utchat of Sekhmet, Mighty Lady, Mistress of the Gods’ Is Thy Name.

Blessed be.