Hello and welcome to the 21 day Kemetic Challenge! Feel free to do as much or as little of it as you wish! And if any questions don’t quite apply to you, you can always answer them hypothetically and say what you would do if it did apply! Most importantly though, have fun!
(My answers to this are mostly really short, so I’m going to post them all at once.)
Day 1: What drew you to kemeticism? When did you realize that it was for you?
Well, I sort of bumbled around a lot of the various new age concepts while I was still Christian, looking for answers the Church didn’t really have. Anyway, I was still praying, but God started to feel increasingly distant. I could tell someone or something was still listening though, so I asked, “If God’s not answering my prayers, who is?” The answer I got back was, “Neith.” I was like, WTF is that? Then I did my research, found out who Neith was, and well, the rest is history.
Day 2: Are you a reconstructionist, revivalist, or more modern kemetic, and why?
Practically speaking probably more of a revivalist? I like to be as historically informed as possible, but a lot of it’s not really possible to reconstruct, partially due to things that have been lost to time and partially due to cultural differences between Ancient Egypt and where I live today. Sadly, I can’t just take a month or two off from my job to go serve in the temple. But I do what I can in my daily life.
Day 3: Are you practicing independently or with a group or community? Why did you choose this? Do you think it would ever change?
Largely independent, although I’m active with my local CUUPS group (I’m the only kemetic, though), and relatively active here and a couple other places online. My actual worship and ritual practices are entirely a solo affair. There’s not really any other kemetics in my area, and, to be honest, I really enjoy my quiet ritual time with the gods. It would take a lot for me to switch to a group practice with other kemetics.
Day 4: Which gods are you devoted to or worship? And which other ones are you interested in in any way?
I worship the Netjeru as a whole—the entirety of the pantheon is welcome in my home. Heqet, Neith, and Thoth are probably my top three that I work with the most. Also worth mentioning: Mehet Weret, Anpu, Bast, Sokar, and Set. I also really like Nephthys and Hatmehit, and keep meaning to look into Khnum more, since he’s often associated with Heqet. Sobek and Tawaret are also cool.
Day 5: How do you communicate with your gods? Can you hear their voices in your head as thoughts, do you get feelings or emotions, or anything else?
Head voices and feels, mostly.
Day 6: Talk about your relationships with your gods. How do you build these relationships? What are they like to you?
I pray a lot, and make an effort to spend time with the gods when I can. I also do research and read about them to find out what they were like in antiquity. Each god is different, but I’ve generally found the pantheon as a whole to be very kind and caring. To know the Netjeru is to love them.
Day 7: What kinds of things do you offer to your gods? What do they like? Do you give universal offerings, or something for each one separately?
Food and drink mostly—I usually go with bread or these little fruit filled pastries, but will also use fresh fruit. I do juice or lemonade when I have it, but will also do water. The various Netjeru are welcome to make special requests (e.g meat for Bast) and I do what I can. I have a couple different incenses, but usually default to frankincense and myrrh. Generally I just put out a plate and invite any netjer who wishes to partake, although on occasion I may tailor it a little more specifically. Currently, where I’ve been working with Heqet a lot, I’ve been giving her daily offerings in the form of sharing my lunch—I’ll prepare my fruit and vegetables, and set them out for her while I eat the rest of my food. It’s stealthy.
I also pick up small devotional gifts from time to time, like small statuary, jewelry, that sort of thing.
Day 8: Are there any activities that you devote to your gods?
I have a purely professional relationship with Sokar, and devote the parts I run at work to him. I also weave for Neith. Other projects come and go.
Day 9: Do you devote music or playlists to your gods? What kind of music do you play for them?
Not really. I recently experimented with playing like rainforest sounds during a ritual for Heqet, and that went really well.
Day 10: Are there any gods you work with or talk to that you’re not devoted to or worship?
Not that I can talk about at this time. Like I said, I worship the entire pantheon, so they all get their honors.
Day 11: Talk about your shrine. Is it digital or physical, or both? What kinds of things are on it? Do you make any of it yourself?
Physical. I’ve got a few small shrines scattered through the house. The basic setup is a statue (or statues) and an offering bowl. That’s usually where I put like votive offerings, devotional jewelry, and other gifts. I dyed the altar cloth for the main shrine, and wove the one for Heqet’s windowsill shrine. I also made Thoth’s offering bowl. I’m pretty handy with making stuff. That said, the only representation I’ve made is the small polymer clay frog I keep in my toolbox for Heqet. Sculpting is not my strong suit.
Day 12: Have you set up any other devotional items or spaces around your room or house?
I mentioned this in the last question, but here’s what I’ve currently got: one main shrine, one shrine for Neith, one shrine for Thoth, a shrine on a windowsill for Heqet (where I put all the froggy presents), and a second shrine for Heqet on my nightstand, which is where her offering bowl is—that’s the fanciest one. I also have an altar I set up for ritual needs as needed.
Day 13: Are there any jewelry or objects you wear or carry?
I love jewelry, and have several necklaces, pairs of earrings, and bracelets that I wear. Unfortunately, I can’t wear any of it to work due to safety reasons, but I always wear something in my off time.
Day 14: Do you own any kemetic or egyptian books? Are they digital or physical or both?
Yes, and yes.
Day 15: How important to you is correct terminology?
Relatively. Words mean things, and it’s important to use them correctly. That said, the written form of ancient Egyptian didn’t use vowels, so there’s a pretty big margin of error. As long as you are respectful and making an effort, I’m pretty understanding.
Day 16: Are there any rituals that you regularly perform?
Everything’s on an as needed basis at this time.
Day 17: Do you honor your ancestors or the dead in general, or no?
I have a healthy respect for the dead, but I’m really disconnected from my ancestors. I mean, my extended family has always lived really far away, so I’ve never really gotten to know them. Growing up it was just my parents, my sibling, and myself. Trying to honor people I never knew who have passed on from this world just doesn’t quite feel right to me personally.
Day 18: Are there any holidays you celebrate? Which ones?
Still working on my calendar, but I’m trying to do Wep Ronpet and The Establishment of the Celestial Cow. I’d like to add others, but it’s a really daunting task. I will also confess to still celebrating Christmas and Easter because my family is Catholic and they all celebrate it.
Day 19: Do you use heka in any way? How do you utilize it?
Heka is complicated, where it’s got a couple different translations. I do try to be very careful with my words, at least in writing, so I think that sort of counts. I’m not averse to using magic in general, but in most cases the muggle approach is easier.
Day 20: Do you keep a journal for your journey and experiences?
I try, but often fail miserably.
Day 21: And to top it all off with a bang, how do you live in Ma’at? What kinds of things do you do or say or believe that help you with this? Talk a little about your lifestyle and what you do to live in Ma’at.
I interpret Ma’at as balance, and work hard to keep balance in my life and provide balance to the people around me. Balance is a double edged sword, though, so sometimes my actions are not what you’d expect. Still, I try to be kind to others, avoid violence, and generally do my best to be a good person.
And that’s it! Thanks for participating!
(originally published Apr 15, 2017 on my tumblr)