Sunday, April 10, 2016

[Guest Article] Andrea: My Egyptian Beliefs


A note from Witchy Words:  At the beginning of the year, I asked the circle I coordinate, Circle of Fountains, if they'd each like to do a guest article based on a topic that I might not be able to cover.  This is a great effort by my amazing circle to give you information that you might not otherwise encounter here at Witchy Words.  The following article is written not by me but another member of Circle of Fountains, with credit and notes about its author below.  Enjoy!


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Back when I was asked if I wanted to be a guest poster on Witchy Words, I was like, “Sure, how hard can it be?” Now, I'm two months late with this post and still staring at a blinking cursor. I am surprised at how hard it can be to write about something I love. I started off thinking of doing it more like a research paper. As I was typing about the common Egyptian gods and goddesses, it got me thinking of how boring of a post that will be when it can be easily Googled. Next idea was telling you the story of creation and how the gods came into existence. Once again, this can be Googled and the story will vary depending on the source, location and which kingdom ancient Egypt.

Finally, it came to me why I was having hard time writing about something I loved since I was a little girl; I don't know how to write about myself and my passions. So for a few weeks when my brain was able to function, I would just sit for a moment or two to ask Thoth, the god of knowledge, for advice on how to go about this project. All I got out was “be myself." Once I figured out that I wanted to write about my personal experiences, Witchy Words herself gave me questions to answer to make it easier on me.


What gods and goddeses do I follow?  I honor Bastet mostly for her affiliation with cats. As a human slave to five cats and I have really only ever had cats when I was growing up, I was fascinated with her. Bastet has more associations than just cats though. She was also warrior goddess for the sun and battled the evil snake Apep. She also has an association with perfumes, protection against contagious diseases and evil spirits (this is why we seen the cat hiss at Imotep in the “Mummy” movie). She was also associated with child birth, since female cats are protective of their young.



The god Seth (also known as Seti, Set, Setesh) is the god of the desert, storms, disorder, violence and is another god I honor. He had a major part in Egyptian mythology. On a good side of him, he was employed by Ra on his boat to repel the serpent of chaos Apep. He was also the lord of the red (desert) land, to balance out Horus who was the lord o the black (soil) land. He was also known as a murderer who killed his brother Osiris. Seth is depicted with a male body and the head of an unknown animal. Some Egyptologists think he is composed of an aardvark, a donkey, a jackal, or a fennec fox. I honor Seth because, as humans, we will always have what he stood for. The storms could mean really anything if we think about it, but as human beings we are known for disorder, violence and chaos. Even when there is peace somewhere in the world, it will always know those aspects of Seth. So for me, its just understanding my own nature and those around me. I will never be shocked by someones need for disorder, violence and chaos as it is part of us. Not all of us show that side often or keep it buried, but knowing it can be there and understand it gives me the knowledge of how to handle it.

I don't know what drew me to Egyptian gods and not any others, like Norse or Greek. I didn't really know about Norse mythology till early 2000s when I found a mentor in my area who worshiped Norse gods. As for Greek mythology, I never connected with the gods and goddesses based on their lore. In my personal view, they like to mess with humans. To me, Egyptian gods cared about humans, looked out and protected them. Sure there are stories where they toy with humans, but I know I would if I was a higher being.  Obviously, I respect everyone's decision to worship whatever pantheon they choose, but this is why I chose mine.

I know that Egyptian gods and beliefs are culturally significant.  The thing is that Egyptian culture was open. They spread their beliefs around and anyone could come in and believe in Egyptian gods and that was fine.  I still don't want to hurt anyone with my beliefs and I try to be aware of the culture behind the gods that I believe in and worship.

When I am asked about the my path, I always answer by saying “I am a pagan," but what does that mean to me? I don't do spells, potions, palm reading, and very rarely will I do tarot. I mostly celebrate the wheel of the year, all of earth's seasons.  I always say hello to the sun and moon when I see them for the first time everyday. Even though I follow Egyptian gods, I don't claim Kemetism as my religion either.  To be honest, I really don't know much about the workings of Kemetism. I know I could research to find out but I am comfortable with the way I practice now.

I can't actually tell you how long I have been practicing as a pagan. I wasn't raised to be any one religion. My mother was Catholic and my father was an atheist. Religion was never pushed on me unless my parents needed a free babysitter for after school. I know I started to read about witchcraft when I was about eight years old. Around my late teens is when I found out about Wicca. The balance between the idea of a god and goddess and of nature itself made more sense to me than having one God who created everything. The thing that bothered me about some popular religions is that they tell you that God is everywhere, but you have to go to a church and talk to a priest or person of God to be able to talk to him or ask for forgiveness. I didn't see why I had to ask for forgiveness when it was my mistake, which made it mine to fix and forgive myself for that mistake.  And I didn't see why I needed to go to a church to talk to my gods or be in good standing with them when I could speak to them and find their favor in my own home.  I always respect people who believe what they believe, but it just didn't work for me.

While I focused on Wicca a lot when I was younger, as I matured, I realized it wasn't for me.  While there are many different beliefs for Wicca, common ones involving spell work and worshiping deity, calling them down for ritual, just didn't suit me.  I don't call upon Bastet and Seth for protection and strength, and I rarely call them into ritual.   I make it a point to rarely ask for the gods' attention, something I picked up from a friend. Why bring attention to yourself from a higher being? When in stories and lore they just really toy with humans.  Instead, the goddess Bastet and the god Seth have a home on my altar (when I am able to set it).  I look to them and remember I have a fighting spirit and protect those I love, but I am still human.  I will always be in a state of chaos but I will have knowledge and strength to go to battle.

I am what I call a lazy pagan. I would read about it, understand what I wanted to do, but just never did it. I can't say it's because I was shy and was afraid of what my parents, family and neighbors might think of me. [Witchy Words note: And it's certainly not because Andrea wasn't knowledgeable enough to execute.  She doesn't give herself enough credit!]  But things changed for me when I joined Circle of Fountains last year.  You might think being the only member that honors Egyptian gods would separate me from the other members, but that difference actually makes us more whole.  The circle does not ask you to forget who you are or your background is. For us, each person and each difference helps us grow. We ask questions about each others background and beliefs, share gifts of items that are created out of herbs and food (if you are talented enough not to kill everything you try to grow). Most of all what I get out of the circle is people who understand, willing to listen and learn about me as a person not as a person with the same interest that only meet up during rituals.  I may not claim to be a Eclectic Heathen, Nontheistic Cottage Witch, Kitchen Witch or Hereditary Witch like some of my circle mates, but we don't need to follow the same path in my circle. We are who we are and we have grown in strength, knowledge, understanding and most importantly we have become a family.


This path that I have chosen is still unclear to me for I am not much of a planner. I'm more of a “let's see where this goes” person. I can say I never really knew what I was seeking, but I was willing to learn. Joining Circle of Fountains changed my life because it gave me direction.

I do hope to see you, readers and followers of Witchy Words, around for some more of the wonderful posts from the creator and some guest writers. I would also like to hear about some of how you guys found the path you are on, or what you're still searching for.

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Andrea is a self-proclaimed lazy pagan and the Archivist for Circle of Fountains.  If she isn't hanging with the circlemates, she is at home surrounded by her husband and five cats playing games or reading. She loves to make greeting cards and is skilled in paper crafting. You will always find her with her nook no matter where she goes.

12 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing your story Andrea! I too identify with the Egyptian pantheon. I have always been a cat person in the extreme and finding my spirituality these last few years explains a lot! (Note: I only have two cats but wish my husband wouldn't mind more ;) I've always had a love and fascination with egyptology and movies like "The mummy", but I had a serious revelation a few years ago after reading an egyptian pathworking book. I did a meditation that night and went to bed. The next day I had symbols appear on my bathroom floor...in the tile. No rational explanation but luckily for me, it was a sign that my spiritual path was indeed beginning! I've loved the journey ever since! I found another pagan friend that also is into the Egyptian pantheon, and we think we knew one another in a past life, perhaps even in Egypt! It's wonderful.

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    1. Glad you like the post. Happier that you are find the right path that makes you happy and even got a new friend. I loved learning about Egyptian gods and the temples. Some of the art history gets my attention but as the Pharaohs never really had the urge to learn about them. A lot of their stories are stolen from past pharaohs just to make them look better then the ones before them. As for knowing each other in past lives, anything is possible in this world. :) Thank you for enjoying the post and taking the time to comment.

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  2. Wonderful post! I am currently testing things out to see where I feel more comfortable. I have always been attached to Egyptian gods & goddess as well as Greek gods & goddess. I really enjoyed this reading. I found it very inspiring, Thank You <3

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    1. Glad that you found this inspiring, as it being my first blog post EVER. I was worried that it would be boring for you guys counting there really isn't any photo (beside the circle photos, and the one of cat two-face eating my finger while trying to do crafting) As for trying out Egyptian gods vs Greek, remember Greek had a hold on Egypt and some there gods are the same a the Egyptian gods. I would say cross reference on each god of you choosing and see what is more comfortable for you. Remember even if the gods share the same quality they are still different entities and probably don't like to be mixed up when you are doing something with them. If you call to an Egyptian god stay with Egyptian gods, if you call for a Greek god, stay with all Greek gods.

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    2. Are there any readings you would recommend?

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    3. I can't recommend anything for practicing Kemetism, since I don't practice it. As for just leaning about the gods, you can find many books or stuff online. Always remember though some of the view are based of the authors interpretation, but also back in Ancient Egyptian times depending on if you lived in the upper or lower part some of the gods descriptions might be a little different.As for books just to learn about them, The book of the dead is always a good place to start (sadly it can be boring and dry to read), Who's Who in Egyptian mythology by Anthony S. Mercatante is good to learn about the many gods. You will find there are a lot of books out there by E.A. Wallis Budge ( he was the one to "find" the book of the dead. It depends on what you read) his books are SUPER dry and he had an ego. He was one of the leading person in his field at the time. There is still really good facts about the religion and history of the culture.

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  3. Thanks for sharing your story! I don't know much about Egyptian religious practices so this gave me some insight into that. Glad I'm not the only "lazy" one around too. There are so many things I want to do or try and I just never seem to get around to most of them. Anyway, thanks again for the article!

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    1. Thank you for reading this article. There wasn't much about Egyptian religion, it was more just on my point of view. IF you like stories, there are many books that are the stores that they found over the years. They are fun and can be educational to read, much like fables. if you are interested in these story just let me know here and i can try to point you in the right direction. I am very much a lazy pagan, I have never really set up an alter, calling down the moon on a full night or really did any practice work on my own. That is why I love my circle, we help each other grow.

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  4. I just loved your article, as I can totally see myself a lazy pagan too. I do not really worship gods or godesses but if I would, it would be the egyptian pantheon. I've always been interested in egyptian beliefs. Thanks for that article !

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    1. Thank you for taking the time to read and comment on the article. I have to say I wasn't expecting so many replies on this.
      I can say that i don't really worship them like some people do, by calling to them, talking with them, asking for some help to something they need. I will only call about them if I think someone in my circle or loved pet needs their help. I mostly honor them, I respect what and who they are. I try not to call for their attention if I don't need it.
      As for Ancient Egypt mythology it is interesting to learn about and read the stories that were left behind, and see that some of those morals still exist in this day of age, where we don't really every have to leave the house if we don't want to.

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  5. Really great article, informative and personal! I enjoyed reading about your journey of your Egyptian beliefs. I would so love to read more about your path! Many blessings :)

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    1. Thank you for taking the time to read and comment on this post. I won't lie this post was hard to write about for a couple reasons, one I never wrote a blog post. So i didn't know what her readers where looking for. Second was due to health issues and she let me slide for awhile to try and recover. Since this post interested you about my path, feel free to ask or give a list of questions (since I write better when I get asked questions) and I will see if she wants me to do another post using the readers questions.

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