Posts Tagged With: Ancient Egypt

Today’s Quiz: A Quick Cat Quiz for Cat Lovers

Quick Cat Quiz for Cat Lovers

1. In ancient Egypt, when a household cat died, family members did  what to mourn the passing of their pussycat?

a. Shave their eyebrows

b. Henna tattoo the name of their cat across their hearts

c. Make offerings of cream to the cat goddess Bastet and beat their chests  while wailing

d. Burn catnip and frankincense in all of the doorways and leave offerings of  cream outside the front door

2. A cat is a digitigrade animal which means:

a. They vary in the number of toes they have

b. They are adept at climbing trees, but head-first only.

c. They have soft pads on the bottom of their feet which makes them near  silent in their movement

d. They walk on their toes

3. The technical term for a cat’s hairball is a:

a. Doozie

b. Bezoar

c. Furetto

d. Ailuro

4. In Catholicism, the Patron Saint of Cats is:

a. Saint Francis of Assis

b. Saint Gertrude of Nivelles

c.  Saint Garfield of Davis

d. Saint Catherine of Alexandria

5. Strings for guitars, fiddles, harps and tennis rackets once used catgut.  True or False?

6. Kitten litter-mates can have different fathers.  True or  False?

7. What is the largest recorded litter for one cat?

a. 10

b. 12

c. 16

d. 19

8. Which famous historical figure had a deep distaste for the  dirtiness of dogs, but loved cats so much that he reportedly cut the sleeve from  his robe to avoid disturbing his cat that fell asleep in his arms?

a. Winston Churchill

b. Prophet Mohammed

c. Buddha

d. St. Francis of Assisi

9. According to another well-loved legend, which famous historical  figure stroked their beloved cat three times, thus granting it — and all cats  thereafter — seven lives.

a. Prophet Mohammed

b. Buddha

c. King Tutankhamen (King Tut of Egypt)

d. Cleopatra

10. Catnip is exciting to some cats because:

a. It smells similar to a queen (adult female) in heat.

b. It is illegal in many states

c. It is chemically similar to hormones produced by a lactating mother  cat

d. It can trigger visual and olfactory hallucinations

 

11. Everyone knows cheetahs are the fastest land animal, but  which cat claims second place?

a. Clouded leopard

b. Amur leopard

c. Caracal

d. Serval

 

12. An ancient Chinese legend maintains that the cat is the  cross-breeding between which two animals?

a. Fox and a rabbit

b. Monkey and lioness

c. Monkey and an otter

d. Lioness and a weasel

 

The Answers

1. In ancient Egypt, when a household cat died, family members did what to  mourn the passing of their pussycat?

a. Shave their eyebrows

In ancient Egypt, cats were sacred and associated with the goddess Bastet.  Thus, when a family cat left the world of the living, family members would mourn  by shaving off their eyebrows, as well as, host elaborate funerals. The cat was  typically embalmed and buried in the family tomb or in a pet cemetery with a  wooden mask. To help the newly deceased cat pass to the world of the dead, tiny  mice mummies were often also buried with the beloved feline.

2. A cat is a digitigrade animal which means:

d. They walk on their toes

Like most fast mammals, cats walk and run on their toes.

3. The technical term for a cat’s hairball is a:

b. Bezoar

The term for hairballs in my household however is just plain gross.

4. In Catholicism, the Patron Saint of Cats is:

b. Saint Gertrude of Nivelles

5. Strings for guitars and tennis rackets once used catgut. True and False.

True because the term catgut was used to refer to musical instrument strings,  but false because the source of the string was not from the gut of cats. Rather,  the source of these strings were usually sheep, cow and goat intestines. The  term catgut may be a shortened version of cattle gut, but the etymology is not  entirely clear.

6. Kitten littermates can have different fathers.  True.

7. What is the largest recorded litter for one cat?

d. 19

A normal litter of kittens ranges from one to six kittens, although up to  nine is not uncommon. The largest known litter however was 19 kittens, of which  15 survived.

8. Which famous historical figure had a deep distaste for the dirtiness of  dogs but loved cats so much that he reportedly cut the sleeve from his robe to  avoid disturbing his cat that fell asleep in his arms?

b. Prophet Mohammed

The Prophet Mohammed, the founder of the Muslim religion, loved cats so much  that legend has it that he once cut  the sleeve from his robe to avoid disturbing his sleeping cat, Muezza. Indeed, Islamic tradition teaches their adherents that cats are to be  respected and loved and mistreating a cat is considered a serious sin.

9. According to another well-loved legend, which famous historical figure  stroked their beloved cat three times, thus granting it — and all cats  thereafter — seven lives.

a. Prophet Mohammed

According to legend, the multiple lives all started when Prophet Mohammed  granted his favorite cat, Muezza, seven lives and the ability to always land on  all four paws after a fall.

10. Catnip is exciting to some cats because:

a. It smells similar to a queen (adult female) in heat.

Catnip contains a chemical, transnepetalactone, that is very similar to the  substance secreted by a female cat in oeterous (in heat).  Combine  this fact with the fact that catnip is also closely related to marijuana and you  can see why some cats bliss-out when given this kitty treat! MEOW-ZA!

11. Everyone knows cheetahs are the fastest land animal, but which cat  claims second place?

d. serval

Second to the Cheetah in speed (60 mph), the serval reaches speeds of 45-50  mph.

12. An ancient Chinese legend maintains that the cat is the cross-breeding  between which two animals?

b. a monkey and lioness

Ancient Chinese legend maintains that the cat is the product of a lioness and  a monkey – the lioness endowing her offspring with dignity and the monkey with  curiosity and playfulness.

 

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Your Charm for February 17th is The Buckle of Isis

Your Charm for Today

The Buckle of Isis

Today’s Meaning:

Someone who will, or has told a lie about you regarding this aspect will be discovered and the truth will come out. They will suffer for their injustice and you shall prevail.

General Description:

The blood of Isis, the virtue of Isis, the magic power of Isis, the magic power of the Eye, are protecting this the Great one; they prevent any wrong being done to him. Thus reads a portion of the 156th chapter of the Egyptian Book of the Dead, which was engraved, often with other invocations, on the Buckle of Isis amulets. Great faith was placed in the magic power of this buckle, or tie. It was believed that the wearer would be protected and guarded from every kind of evil for ever and ever.

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Your Charm for February 11th is The Menat

Your Charm for Today

The Menat

Today’s Meaning:

A few prayers to your deity of choice would serve you well when dealing with this aspect. Your questions or requests stand a better chance of being answered in the next few days if you do so.

General Description:

This elaborately ornamental charm, worn by Egyptian women, was supposed to bestow upon them all the blessings of their powerful Hathor, goddess of the sunrise, whose worship was universal in Egypt. Health, strength, happiness – all these were the gifts of this their goddess of love. She was regarded as a loving, protecting mother, both of the living and of the dead; was the deity who filled both heaven and earth with her beneficence, and the dispenser of all the blessings of life.

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Your Charm For Today

The Tet

Today’s Meaning:  

This aspect is influenced by someone who finds you irresistible, yet they will say nothing of it.

General Description:   

The Tet, or Tat, amulet was most popular with the ancient Egyptians, among whom the power of charms was believed to be irresistible. They were worn to protect the human body, living and dead alike from evil influences, and from attacks of invisible and visible enemies. The Setting up of the Tet (the reconstruction of the body of Osiris the god of vegetation and everlasting life) was a religious ceremoney, celebrated annually at Abydos, in Upper Egypt, and in the Delta at Busiris. Worn as a talisman for protection from evil also for strength and stabiltiy

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Your Charm for January 13 is The Heart

Your  Charm for January 13th is The Heart

The Heart

 Today’s Meaning:       

A course of events that cannot be altered has been set in motion within this aspect. Accept whatever happens in the near future and do not waste your time fretting about it–you can do nothing.         

General Description:        

This was a favourite charm in Egypt, worn in order to frustrate magicians, sorcerers and evil wishers from bewitching the wearer and stealing the soul from the heart; for it was the general belief that if the soul left the heart, the boy would soon fade away and perish. The ancient Egyptians also believed that, after death, the heart was taken, in the underworld, and weighed against the symbols of the law; if found perfect, it was restored to the body, which at once came to life again and enjoyed everlasting felicity

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A Call from the Ancestors

A Call from the Ancestors

Author:   Rev.Roman Delgado   

As I sit before my altar, I’ve had a memory, a vague knowing of something past calling me to return to myself. As if the echoes of those gone before call me into a path walked by many in Aeons past. A feeling as if what I have lost to the sands of time and waves of progress and technology as only been forgotten and craves to return.

So many have felt this call before me. I have seen it on the news, then Internet, books. Everywhere people today seem to want to return to the ways that have been lost to time. Revival and reconstructionist religious movements are being seen from the black fertile lands of Egyptian religion and the fields of Greece to the Ancient Aztec world.

The path of the ancient ones calls, yet so much of it is forgotten. Through the Aeons past in which change and progress have changed the landscape of Gaia, those gone before us seem to have been swallowed by sands of time. No longer do we seem to want to cross the river Styx; few are those that delve into the path of transformation and cross the bridge to the land of the dead and return like the true initiates of the mysteries of the ancients transformed and renewed.

Today’s society has rejected death. On a pragmatic level it makes sense. Life is meant to be lived not mourned. Life is lived for its own merit not for the sake of its end. However, in the process of forgetting the importance of death, we have forgotten the reality of transformation. Death and life is not only a never-ending spiral in the great wheel of rebirth.

Death is all around in times when only life can be seen. Death is the forbearer of rebirth and, as each thing grows anew, it is a sign of transformation. It is a sign that something else has come to an end in order to bring forth the light of a new era. In paganism this becomes obvious through myth and celebration of the changes in the cycles of life and nature. We celebrate change, yet only delve into what brings change when we actually face it.

As I sit before my altar every day, I hear a call so many ignore unless they wheel of the year tells them it’s time to hear it. A call to change and transform, to die and be reborn. In my path as a pagan, I come from an indigenous background, I have traveled in body, mind and spirit cross cultures to better understand my own past, to understand the Alchemies of the soul.

Along that path I have understood that ritual is transformational. Every time I am in the presence of the divine I am changed and healed. Yet when I traveled outside of my roots into the modern world so many ignore the call of death in their ritual. The call to let go and surrender to the divine, to commune with the God and Goddess, is a pivotal role: the Alchemy of the soul.

In Mexico, I learned about this alchemy as the rites of Coatlicue an ancestral deity ruling over life and death. Her rites were those of shamanic initiation, the dismemberment of the initiate and his reconstruction as a being that holds the wisdom of the ancestors.

Once that pivotal moment is passed I learned the Alchemy of Tezcatlipoca. His rites are of initiation into the darkest parts of one’s own soul. His mysteries are for the ones destined to tame their own fire and harness it into the power to weave destiny. It is the magic of the Ancestors.

Now in a later stage of my development I learn the Alchemy of duality. My Ancestors called this the teachings of Quetzalcoatl and Xochiquetzal. The ancient Egyptians called it the Alchemies of Isis and Osiris and the Alchemies of Horus. Their teaching is the teaching of embracing change, the inner change that fortifies the soul and life-force in order to withstand the change that is the ultimate test of the Alchemist: the culmination of the alchemical process, the attainment of eternal life. A mystery that can only be lived, a choice moment to be in this world or in spirit. That too is the magic of the Ancestors.

Throughout the world, religion is centered on eternal life. Some along the never-ending cycle of re-incarnation. Some in the rebirth after death into an eternal moment of bliss and rest. Yet there are some that only embrace this moment and this life; it is in this moment and life that some religions find death and rebirth.

In the rebirth of Paganism in the western world, so many have ceased to hear the call of the Ancestors. The teachings of the departed are more or less confined to grieving the dead and honoring their memory when the natural world turns to darkness. I must tell you, there is far more to it than that.

The Alchemies of which I speak are the teachings of those who have lived them and mastered them. Blood bonds or not, we are all descendants of our spiritual lines. The Alchemies of the soul are the legacy of the ancient priests and priestesses of the Gods.

The role of the Alchemies is to prepare the Initiate for eternal joy and mastery, be it in the afterlife among the dearly departed or in the ever-present moment that is this world.

The call to the Alchemical mysteries of the ancients lies through the land of the ancestors. It is a call to acknowledge the need for death in life. Not giving up the joys of the world, but to give up what keeps us apart from divinity. It said among initiates of mysteries schools that the true magician must jump the great chasm to achieve the great work. One of the dual secret meanings of this phrase is that the chasm is both internal (states of mind) and spiritual: the chasm between one’s self and divinity itself. As voodoo practitioners say to westerners under a different context: “ You people go to church and pray to God; we go to church and become God”. You see the inner mysteries path of the ancients is simple. It is found in words of Doreen Valiente’s poem, “The Charge of the Goddess”:

“…If what thou seek that does not find within, thou shall never find without. For I am that which has been with thee from the beginning, and I am that which is attained at the end of desire…”

The path to desire lies through the path of death and rebirth. Through letting go and being transformed, it is a path of internal sacrifice, letting go of what separates us from the Gods, our Ancestors and all creation, sacred from the times of the ancients to this day. As it is said in the Charge of the God:

“Let my name be within the body that sings, for all acts of willing sacrifice are my rituals…”

Let us not forget the call the Gods made to the Ancestors long ago. A call passed on to us. A call to death and rebirth, life and afterlife. A call that shall echo in the minds and souls of the initiates through all eternity…

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Art of Scrying

Art of Scrying

Scrying can be an auto-deepening trance process that progresses in stages using tools such as a crystal ball, or other medium. Initially, the medium serves as a focus for the attention, removing unwanted thoughts from the mind in the same way as a mantra. Once this is achieved, the scryer begins a free association with the perceived images suggested, for instance in a crystal ball, by the tiny inclusions, web-like faults and/or the cloudy glow within the ball under low light (i.e. candlelight).

The technique of deliberately looking for and declaring these initial images aloud, however trivial or irrelevant they may seem to the conscious mind, is done with the intent of deepening the trance state, wherein the scryer hears their own disassociated voice affirming what is seen within the concentrated state in a kind of feedback loop. This process culminates in the achievement of a final and desired end stage in which visual images and dramatic stories seem to be projected within the mind’s eye of the scryer, like an inner movie. This overall process reputedly allows the scryer to “see” relevant events or images within the chosen medium.

Scrying has been used for thousands of years by different cultures. Ancient Egypt used scrying in their Initiations.   This included water scrying, dream scrying, oil scrying, and mirror scrying. One legend states that the goddess Hathor carried a shield that could reflect back all things in their true light. From this shield she allegedly fashioned the first magic mirror to “see.”

Ancient Persia — the Shahnama, a semi-historical epic work written in the late 10th century, gives a description of what was called the Cup of Jamshid, used in pre-Islamic Persia, which was used by wizards and practitioners of the esoteric sciences for observing all the seven layers of the universe.

Ancient Greeks and Celts practiced scrying using beryl, crystal, black glass, polished quartz, water, and other transparent or light catching bodies.  Nostradamus is believed to have employed a small bowl of water as a scrying tool into which he gazed and received images of future events. Alchemists Edward Kelley and John Dee employed a form of scrying using a small crystal ball or shewstone – a piece of polished obsidion. The crystal ball and wax tablets used by Dee and Kelley are on display at the British Museum in London.

Scrying is the occult practice of using a medium, most commonly a reflective surface or translucent body, to aid perceived psychic abilities such as clairvoyance. The media often used to “see” are water, polished precious stones, crystal balls, or mirrors. Scrying, in this context, uses a “visual” process. There are some who believe the art of scrying is not limited to the use of “reflective” or “translucent” bodies only, but includes other media. Scrying has been used in many cultures as a means of seeing the past, present, or future; in this sense scrying constitutes a form of divination.

 

Source:
Crystalinks.com
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Your Ancient Symbol Card for December 20 is The Hand

Your Ancient Symbol Card for Today

The Hand

Although the exact meaning may vary, The Hand is a symbol of some form of personal power in many cultures and religions. The presence of The Hand is an indication that your personal powers are at or near their zenith. The Hand suggest a time when you should leave your mark on the world.

As a daily card, The Hand suggest that now is a time for you to leave your mark on the world. Your unique strengths are heightened to a point where you can not only expect to make substantial progress towards your goals, but enjoy recognition for your efforts as well.

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