I saw some lovely bright Dandelions on the grass opposite our house last Monday and they gave me an idea. Mum and I are both in need of some more joyous, spontaneous energies, and we’re both exploring Inner Child healing at the moment. For me the Dandelion has a positive, joyful, almost childlike playfulness to it. So many people see it as a weed but it has amazing detoxification properties, is full of nutrients and can be used for uplifting.
Mum helped me pick them, and after checking them for critters I put them in a jar, poured vodka over them, and placed them on my altar. I thought I’d ask Bast and Horus to help charge the tincture. Both are associated with the Sun. Cats can be playful, nurturing and protective, like Bast. Horus can see from a higher vantage point, is associated with children as Horus the Child, and is sometimes shown with His wings protecting the King’s back. As such I feel like Their blessings will add to the energy of the Dandelion tincture, which I intend to use in aura sprays to nurture us during Inner Child work and bringing in more joyful, abundant energies.
Did you know that today is International Vulture Awareness Day? Many of these beautiful birds are now threatened or facing extinction, and population numbers are declining the world over. The Egyptian Vulture, which was known in Ancient Egypt, is on the endangered list. The Griffon Vulture, also known in Ancient Egypt, is the only one on the list that is of ‘least concern’.
The first Saturday of September every year is International Vulture Awareness Day (IVAD). Started in 2006 by the Endangered Wildlife Trust’s Birds of Prey Programme and the Hawk Conservancy Trust, plus a range of partners and associates, IVAD has become a global event supported by the IUCN SSC Vulture Specialist Group; in 2016, 164 organisations from 47 countries participated. IVAD aims to create awareness about vultures as a whole, garner support among the public about the plight of vultures globally and highlight the work done by conservationists to protect these birds and their habitats.
Vultures are a characteristic, distinctive and spectacular component of the biodiversity of the environments they inhabit. They also provide critically important ecosystem services by cleaning up carcasses and other organic waste in the environment; they are nature’s garbage collectors and this translates into significant economic benefits. Studies have shown that in areas where there are no vultures, carcasses take up to three or four times longer to decompose. This has huge implications for the spread of diseases in both wild and domestic animals, as well as elevating pathogenic risks to humans.
You can find more information on the International Vulture Awareness Day website
They have kids activities and also colouring pages of different vultures on their downloads page, and you can also download this cute ‘Vultures of the World’ PDF
Two species of vulture were known in Ancient Egypt – the Griffon vulture (Gyps fulvus) and the Egyptian vulture (Neophron percnopterus). The Griffon vulture is the one most commonly depicted. On its own it represents the phonetic value of A, and was used to write the word mut, meaning ‘mother’. With the largest wingspan of any bird in Ancient Egypt the outspread wings of the vulture were seen as offering protection¹, and became a popular motif in Egytian art and jewellery. As vulture Goddesses Nekhbet and Mut became symbols of maternal love and protection. In the Late Period the vulture was: ‘…a symbol of the female principle and stood in juxtaposition to the beetle as the embodiment of the male principle.’²
The vulture headdress was seen as a ‘symbol and ideogram of motherhood’³ and also associated any Queen who wore it with Mut as consort of the state God, Amun, and also with Nekhbet as protectress of Upper Egypt¹.
A while ago I was gifted a deck of Hachette Egyptian tarot-type cards by a man whose witchy shop I used to visit. Unfortunately the shop had to close down, but I remember that little place of magic and mystery fondly. Anyway, back to the cards: I haven’t used them in a long time, and last night I felt drawn to use them again. The card that came up was Sobek. I wondered why the Great Crocodile had paid me a visit, and then I remembered that there is a Sobek devotional looking for submissions. So I have taken Sobek’s hint to share the link, and I will await to see if He inspires me to create an entry of my own.
We’re a month in and I’ve had some submissions so far, but I would love to have more. If anyone’s thinking of submitting something, please send it in! This devotional can’t happen without your submissions, so please get in touch. sobekdevotionalATgmail.com
via PSA: Send me things for the Sobek Devotional! — Per Sebek
One of my more recent tasks has been to reconnect with the Egyptian God Set. This Deity has fascinated me for years. With the breaking down of my old self I realise that my focus needs to be more balanced. Although Loki and Family are still truly Beloved to me, I have neglected ties with many of my Beloved Egyptian Deities.
As recompense I said prayers to Set, asking Him if He still wished to work with me, and if He would grant me His protection. I said I would like to buy a bigger statue for Him, as the current one was only around 2 inches high – the smallest on the altar. A good Set statue is hard to find in the UK, and I looked online but couldn’t find one.
Two days later I was sat in front of my altar and my attention was drawn to a book on my right. It was an Ancient Egyptian Herbal by Lise Manniche. I had done bits of bibliomancy before, so took the hint and turned to a random page. The entry was for Watermelon. According to the book Watermelon was created when Set spilled his seed chasing Isis in the form of a bull. It was used in a wine for protection against evil ‘demons’. Since I’d asked for Set’s protection during a very difficult and vulnerable time I took it as a sign. I looked online for Watermelon wine but to no avail. I did, however, come across some Watermelon liqueur. Asking Set through my pendulum whether he would like the liqueur for offerings I got a resounding “Yes” and ordered it.
Later that afternoon I got an ebay alert saying a Set statue had been listed! Now, you could look at this as three completely unconnected, random events, but I choose not to. To me this is cause and effect: you pray and make reparations, you ask for help, and express a wish to more openly honour Them, and They respond.
News & picture source: @Pastpreservers on Twitter https://twitter.com/Pastpreservers/status/816279536140685314?s=09
What better way to be greeted on arrival in Cairo than by a Goddess? I love Selket (also known as Serqet), I have a much smaller version of this rendering of her on my own altar. It’s lovely to see modern Egypt embracing its past in such a blatantly obvious way. Yes, it’s probably to attract more tourists but with all the threats against so many religious beliefs right now it’s heartening to see one of the Old Ones making such a bold appearance.
Lady of the Desert
Let us wander freely among your sands,
Let us honour your name with each safe step
And each safe passage.
We beseech you, Lady of Scorpions,
To hold your sting
For those who would do harm.
Let us walk under your protective gaze
And ever be in your favour.
(© Michelle Gilberthorpe, Northern Tamarisk, 2017)
From the Egypt Exploration Society ‘s Twitter feed:
New volume now available! Rosalie David’s ‘Temple Ritual at Abydos’, packed full of archive photos and watercolours: https://t.co/Ae2bQ8zK6U https://t.co/YjPsy91fiP
From the website:
…Prof David added the complete translations and transliterations to the ritual inscriptions and revised the text; we selected images from the EES archives and especially from the 1930-50s Calverley & Broome folios with their magnificent watercolours…
The result is one the most ambitious volumes the EES has realised in some time and one of the most visually appealing too. On 392 pages you’ll find numerous line drawings, many full-colour reproductions of the scenes of ritual and sacrifice from the temple walls, and photographs from our archives.
Amentet Neferet have released a 2017 edition of their wonderful Egyptian Religious Calendar. The book uses the same astronomical events the Ancient Egyptians would have used to calculate when their new year and seasons would begin, making it different from books that fit it in with our modern calendar. It details which Deity the day is sacred to and also the festivals the Egyptians would have celebrated. Sayings about appropriate behaviour and warnings from various Ancient Egyptian sources are also included in the daily digest.
I really love it, and am considering buying the digital version this year so I can upload it to my phone and kindle and take it with me wherever I want. Plus I have a habit of forgetting to check the paper edition I currently have as I like to keep my books tidied away. The only way I can think of improving the book is to have a spiral bound edition so you can leave it open on the relevant day’s page(s). That would have been a big help to me with the 2016 paperback I have now.
Here is the link to Amentet Neferet’s post: http://wp.me/p2DhMC-La
We are very glad to announce that our book “EGYPTIAN RELIGIOUS CALENDAR – Great Year of Ra CDXVII-CDXVIII (2017 CE)”, the Complete Egyptian Religious Calendar with all the religious prescriptions and the sacred festivities for the year 2017, is now available on amazon.com both in paperback format and as a digital ebook…
Note: I have not received any incentive to promote this book. I am doing so because it has helped me in my own devotional practice.