Deity of the Day for July 3rd is Khepri, The Egyptian God

Deity of the Day

Khepri

 

Khepri (also spelled Khepera, Kheper, Khepra, Chepri) is a god in the ancient Egyptian religion.

Khepri was connected with the scarab beetle (kheprer), because the scarab rolls balls of dung across the ground, an act that the Egyptians saw as a symbol of the forces that move the sun across the sky. Khepri was thus a solar deity. Young dung beetles, having been laid as eggs within the dung ball, emerge from it fully formed. Therefore, Khepri also represented creation and rebirth, and he was specifically connected with the rising sun and the mythical creation of the world. The Egyptians connected his name with the Egyptian language verb kheper, meaning “develop” or “come into being”. Kheper, (or Xeper) is a transcription of an ancient Egyptian word meaning to come into being, to change, to occur, to happen, to exist, to bring about, to create, etc. Egyptologists typically transliterate the word as ?pr. Both Kheper and Xeper possess the same phonetic value and are pronounced as “kheffer”.

There was no cult devoted to Khepri, and he was largely subordinate to the greater sun god Ra. Often, Khepri and another solar deity, Atum, were seen as aspects of Ra: Khepri was the morning sun, Ra was the midday sun, and Atum was the sun in the evening.

Khepri was principally depicted as a scarab beetle, though in some tomb paintings and funerary papyri he is represented as a human male with a scarab as a head. He is also depicted as a scarab in a solar barque held aloft by Nun. The scarab amulets that the Egyptians used as jewelry and as seals represent Khepri.

 

Source:
Wikipedia

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A Little About August Birth Symbols

August Babies

“Fairest of the months! Ripe summer’s queen, The hey-day of the year, With robes that gleam with sunny sheen, Sweet August doth appear.” —R. Combe Miller

Zodiac: Leo until August 22 and Virgo from August 23

Gemstone: Peridot
The gemstone is formed deep inside the earth and is brought to the surface by volcanoes. They are believed to contain healing powers that protect against nightmares and bring the wearer power and influence. Colors range from yellowish green to a greenish brown.

Flower: Gladiolus, Poppy
The gladiolus brings remembrance, calm, integrity and infatuation. Poppy is also a popular August flower: red means pleasure, white means consolation, and yellow brings wishes of wealth and success.

Tree: Cypress, Poplar, Cedar, Pine

FROM: http://www.whattoexpect.com/pregnancy/photo-gallery/birth-signs-symbols#09

August’s birth flower is gladiolus, or ‘sword lily.’ Gladiolus represents remembrance, calm, integrity, and infatuation. With gladiolus, the recipient’s heart is being “pierced with love.” The other August flower is the poppy. A red poppy signifies pleasure, a white poppy is given for consolation, and a yellow poppy wishes wealth and success.

FROM: http://www.almanac.com/content/birth-month-flowers-and-their-meanings#

August Birthstone – Peridot

Peridot, a symbol of vitality and is the gemstone for people born in August. The official name for peridot is olivine, and can be found in a wide spectrum of green from light-yellow to dark olive. The Egyptians were known to mine for the peridot on Saint John’s Island around 1500 BC. It was used to ward off night terrors and more specifically, when set in gold, would ward off evil. It has also been ground into a fine powder to treat asthma sufferers and used as a cure for thirst most experience during a fever. It has been said that its owner, when worn would have the power of invisibility, and that if a thief about to be hanged or beheaded might escape if one was held in their mouth. It can bring peace, protection and sleep. It has also been worn to calm anger by soothing ones nerves, expelling negative energy. They also can attract love.

The peridot has many symbolic purposes, one that it promises growth for the future and gives strength to individuals and those in relationships. Peridot is a brilliant young green and were first discovered in the black sands of Hawaii. Hawaiian legend states they were tears shed by the volcanic goddess, Pele. It is a connection to nature and Early Egyptians drank from cups made of peridot, believing they would be drawn closer to the goddess of nature, Isis.

The Egyptians also called it the “gem of the sun”, due to its brilliance that it would showcase in the desert sun. By miners, it is said that even in darkness, the peridot could be seen, and they would mark the location. They would then return in the daytime to retrieve them. Perhaps this is why the peridot is at times referred to as the “evening emerald”. Today, it is mined in Hawaii, the Congo, Arizona, Burma, Norway, Australia and Brazil.

August is a month in which for many is viewed as the end of the summer cycle. A time when some need to make plans and begin preparing for the cooler months of fall. It is a time of harvest and hard work. Our bodies are challenged with physical work and long hours. This is a time when one might need to search for strength from an outside source or symbol. During this month we are once again in touch with the earth and the significant seasonal shifts. The birthstones representing each month are meant to empower their owners with gifts specifically needed for each of these seasonal shifts. When the human condition falls short of spiritual or mental needs, these precious stones have been believed to gift their owners strength and endurance in many forms.

Other interesting facts about the August Birthstone of Peridot:

-They were discovered first in Egypt on a tiny island named Zabargard over four-thousand years ago

-In earlier times, Catholic Bishops would wear a peridot ring as a symbol of their purity

-In Medieval times, churches were obsessively adorned by them

-Considered a gift from Mother Nature

-They are created from the conditions of extreme heat from volcanoes

-The most abundant deposits are found in Burma.

-They have been recommended for gall bladder and liver illness

Other Symbols of August:

August Birth Flower:

The Poppy, more specifically the poppy native to the Mediterranean regions. These yield a source of opium, that in the ancient world would bring on sleep and ease pain when taken in smaller amounts. Poppies were associated with the god of sleep, Hypnos and Morpheus, the god of dreams by the Greeks.

August Birth Tree:

The Pine tree. It represents, immortality and longevity.

Famous People Born in August:

Charlize Theron- August 7, 1975

Robert De Niro- August 17, 1943

Audrey Tautou- August 9, 1976

Martin Sheen- August 3, 1940

Andy Warhol- August 6, 1928

Jack Black- August 28, 1969

– See more at: http://birthstonesbymonths.net/august-birthstone-peridot/#sthash.VeUaoXRo.dpuf

The Power of Spirit

The Power of Spirit
Author: Crick

As a witch I firmly believe in the rebirth of the spirit that we call reincarnation. Having said that I have had moments where I have wondered about the development of spirit, as it goes through such stages.

For instance I have mused on whether all of our spirits have started from the same level of experience and need as far as our individual growth. Or are some spirits inherently wiser from the get go and thus advance more rapidly then others?

If one is to believe that the final goal of the spirit is to become as one with one’s chosen Deity. Then another thought would be as these spirits reach their goal, are they in turn replaced by new spirits?

Or are new spirits added according to a divine plan of which we have no knowledge of while in earthly form?

What is the source for the terms “Old souls” in relation to certain folks? Could this be those spirits who have gone through a number of lifetimes?

Or is it the spirits who have gone through a number of lifetimes who have actually obtained knowledge of the lessons that are assigned to each life?

Once a spirit has completed a life are the lessons connected with that life now behind spirit or do they keep shifting from one life to another until spirit finally “gets it”?

Or are these lessons lost and spirit simply moves on to the next set of challenges?

For living a life is no guarantee that such life lessons have been learned at all. It is no secret that some folks wile away their lives through the use of alcohol, drugs, extended moods of anger which only results in negative energy, arrogance which is where one is simply spinning their wheels rather then learning and so forth.

It seems that as far as the human psyche goes, it is easier to engage in negative behavior then it is to actually take hold of ones life and to draw closer to deity.

Taking this thought a step further, once spirit reaches its final goal, are all spirits equal in knowledge and experience or are there various levels of accomplishment that spirit can attain at the end of its journey?

I personally use the analogy of spirit being the flower encased within the human body or seed if you will. As we go through this life we make the conscious or in some cases unconscious choice of either nurturing this flower or not.

When the seed/human body falls away then the flower/spirit is allowed to sprout. It is how we have nurtured this flower/spirit, which will determine whether it becomes a beautiful flower or a weed if you will. This further determines whether spirit needs to repeat the process or whether it can then be free to evolve even further along the spiritual path.

I may be a cynic, but as I look around this world I see more weeds then beautiful flowers.

It seems as if so many folks these days are becoming more and more near-sighted. Being far more concerned about their immediate human desires which are mistakenly perceived as needs rather then the broader picture which is the nourishment of our spiritual needs.

If spirit can feel emotional pain, it must be writhing with anxiety.

As pagans we are aware of the many subtle intricacies of our spirit.
For instance our spirit consists of a soul, which serves as our inner voice. We are aware that there are orbs of energy called chakras that in turn are associated with our major organs.

There is the aura which ebbs and flows in accordance with our emotional and physical states. And some will say that there is an etheric layer of energy that resides as a buffer between the energy of the aura and the actual soul.

At any rate these are the things that we know about the spirit as humans. Could there be so much more that we don’t know about the spirit?

Could the Great Mysteries of life be the discovery of knowledge that we lack in regards to our spirit?

Sometimes I wonder if the spirit sheds the soul when the physical body dies, much like a tree that sheds its leaves when going into a dormant state.

I personally believe that each soul is unique to each physical body. And that spirit chooses which soul to inhabit in order to garner the experiences that are inherent to that particular soul.

I also wonder what we actually mean by the expression, “free spirit”.

Could this be an archaic reference to a spirit that is unfettered? Can a spirit be enslaved or contained in some way by another spirit or perhaps an entity that we are unaware of. Can a lack of knowledge through lessons ignored or not learned lead to such a state of enslavement?

Could it be that all of the horrendous acts of violence, emotional, physical and mental that human’s do to each other be a result of such spirits who have become so enslaved?

These thoughts are not that far fetched really.

In ancient times the Egyptians believed that when a body had reached its final days the spirit would come before an intermediary for judgment. The soul of that spirit which was represented by the heart of the deceased was weighed on the scales of Fate against a feather.

If the soul turned out to be lighter then the feather then the spirit/soul was allowed to pass into an idyllic environment, a resting home for spirits if you will. But if the heart/soul outweighed the feather then the soul/spirit was immediately destroyed by a waiting demon.

I am not sure if this meant that the Egyptians believed that a spirit could be terminated or if this was an analogy for the death of that persons experience up to that point. In which case, the spirit would have to begin all over again. Which leads me to my final thought, is there a set agenda or curriculum if you will that the spirit has to attain to reach the end of one’s goal?

I realize of course that any answers one may have to these musings are pure speculation. But in all reality, isn’t life but a series of speculations?

 

Footnotes:
From the thoughts of an old man…

Written Spells

Written Spells

by Skye Alexander

In earlier times, written spells were the province of a few wise men and women who were more literate than the majority of the populace. In many cultures, the written word was revered as a gift of the gods, especially among the Egyptians and Greeks. For this reason, written spells came to be considered more potent than verbal ones.

One of the oldest and best-known written spells is the word Abracadabra, customarily used to banish sickness. In ancient Chaldean texts, Abracadabra translates as “to perish like the word.” The letters in Abracadabra were written in the form of a descending triangle on parchment, which was then laid on the inflicted body part. Then the paper was removed and stuck in the cleft of a tree. As time and the elements destroyed the paper, the magick would begin to work. This whole process is an example of magickal symbolism, sympathy, and similars — the word disappears into nothingness; the paper disappears into nothingness; and, therefore, the disease or illness takes the hint and follows suit.

When you write with a pen or pencil, you activate the acupressure points in the thumb and fingertips. These points induce relaxation and strengthen the connection to the subconscious mind. Thus, writing contributes to the power of a spell because it helps to center your mind and engages your imagination.

Written words, affirmations, incantations, and sigils are often included in contemporary spells. A written intention might be slipped into a talisman or amulet. Spells are sometimes written on paper, then burned to release the intention into the universe. Witches might write a spell a set number of times — the number corresponds to the spell’s objective (e.g., six times for joint endeavors, eight times to attract financial security). The color of the ink, the shape of the paper, even the addition of aromatics to the ink or paper may contribute to the overall effect of the spell.

Why go through all this fuss? Because witches believe that the more dimensions magick has (with sensual dimensions being especially significant), the better the results will be.

A Word Abou Pet Passing Rituals

Pet Passing Rituals

I posted Silver RavenWolf’s Pet Rite today for a reason. The reason it was the first Rite as far as a beloved animal passing I had to do. I always had my family around me and they would do the Rite for my animals. I also watched them do their own.

The first time I had an animal pass on me, I was all by myself.  It was my first hybrid wolf dog, Rocky. He died with me holding him in my arms singing to him. I felt his Spirit leave but I wouldn’t let go of him. Finally I put him gently down and said my good-byes to him. After watching my mother, aunts, uncle, grandmother, I knew he needed a proper burial. I knew bits and pieces of the ritual but I didn’t know the whole thing. So I found Silver RavenWolf’s book and I used that exact passage when my first wolf passed on.

Since that time, I adapted that Rite to my needs and hopefully made it much more formal.

Mine differs quite a bit. Let’s take a look at it……

Before you arrive, the men will go and dig a final resting place for the animal. Then like Egyptians, we wrap the body up.. When the body is securely wrapped, it is solemnly transported to the grave site.

We now all have on our ritual attire. I am gathering up what was special to the animal in the refuge. If the animal was close to me, I will include something from me on the altar. I do gather up the same amount of candles, the mint, lavender, food and a purple sash. I put all this in my wicker basket, pull my hood up and we walk up to the grave in a silent procession.

When we reach the grave, the procession surround the burial site. I take my place at the altar. I arrange all the items on the altar. I proceed to light the candles. I light the mint. I do not light the lavender and you will see why in a moment.

Next, I ask the Goddess to guide this poor creature to a happier life. Let him/her be by the Goddess side continuously. Show him/her love, love they did not know on this plane. (If it is one of our personal animals that last part is changed.)

Now I walk over to the grave, I raise the lavender to the sky. I ask it to give this creature peace. Let them know nothing but peace from now on out, in the next plane and in his/her next life. My she/him reincarnate into a world of love and nothing but peace. I gently lay the lavender across the creature.

Next, I pick up the purple sash. I raise it to the sky. I ask for blessings of protection on this simple sash. I ask the sash protect the animal to he/she reaches the love and security of our Goddess. Then let the sash be a constant reminder that he/she is part of something bigger than all of us. He is a child of the Goddess. No more cruelty, no more mistreatment, just love and comfort. I then lay the sash across the animal’s chest.

I then return to the altar and ask anyone if they have any blessings they would like to send. If so, their blessings are said.

Afterwards it is time for the Rite to end. I pick up a clump of dirt and say,

“For the earth you came,

to the Earth you shall return.”

So Mote it be!

The others are now allowed to leave if they like. I stand solemnly at the head of the grave. I chant softly as the grave is filled in. Once the gave is filled in, I give a final blessing and the leave.

Personally I think the way we do the Rite is very beautiful and has a true meaning to it. The first Rite I gave you today was to inspire you the way it did me. You see now what kind of Rite we perform. Frankly it doesn’t even resemble Silver RavenWolf’s rite at all anymore.

I always tell you to use the spells and rituals found on this site as examples. Learn to write your own. See what a difference it makes. See how beautiful they can turn out.

OIL SCRYING

OIL SCRYING

The history of oil scrying can be traced back to the ancient Babylonians. Some of their magic books have survived down through the centuries with details of the methods they used.

One of their techniques was called the “Princess of the Thumb”. A scryer anointed the forehead and thumbnail of a subject. The shiny nail acted as a magic mirror in which the scryer saw spirits. Another version was called the “Princess of the Hand”. Oil was mixed with black soot to make a black paste that was then smeared upon the hand. The scryer then used the hand as a mirror to scry future events.

A third type of oil scrying was called the “Princess of the Cup”. Sesame seed oil was used to coat the inside of a cup that was rested on its side.

The cup was used as a concave magic mirror to capture and magnify the light of a candle that was fixed on its inner rim.

From the Babylonians oil scrying found its way to the Egyptians and Hebrews. The most detailed examples of oil scrying are written in the Greek Magical Papyri written in Egypt between 200 B.C. and A.D. 500.

Four kinds of water which is to be mixed with the oil is used for four types of divination.

If you call upon the services of the heavenly Gods then use rainwater. If you invoke the terrestrial Gods then use sea water. If you invoke the Gods Osiris or Sobek use river water. And if you call upon the souls of the dead then use spring water.

LAMP SCRYING

LAMP SCRYING

Both the Egyptians and Babylonians scryed by means of an oil lamp. The lamp itself was in fact a stone shaped as a low open dish with a strip of white linen coiled in the oil that had an end hanging over the end of the dish.

 The Egyptians used clear Oasis oil which was a kind of palm oil. The clearer the oil the better.

The Egyptians used a lamp that was red in colour which is the colour of the God Set. Set is in fact the God of evil.

It may be advisable for you to use a white lamp. Place your lamp on a table and sit on the west side facing east across the lamp.

You should address your invocation to the Greco Roman God who rules the day you scry on.

Sunday : Sun.

Monday : Moon.

Tuesday : Mars.

Wednesday : Mercury.

Thursday : Jupiter.

Friday : Venus.

Saturday : Saturn.

Using the name of the God of the day you should chant a suitable invocation doing so directly into the flame. This invocation should be chanted in a soft voice and done so several times.

Gently focus on the flames of the lamp. You will begin to see moving shadows off to the side.

Do not look directly at the shadows or they will vanish. Ask the shadows what it is you seek.

You may hear voices or you may see images.

Daily Feng Shui Tip for Aug. 3 – ‘National Watermelon Day’

Today’s ‘National Watermelon Day’ honors a summer staple that’s cool and refreshing. But did you know that eating watermelon could do a whole lot more than that? Thought of as one of the most Americana of foodstuffs, watermelons were actually introduced to the Egyptians around 2000 B.C., who would give a mixture of watermelon juice and white wine to anyone believed to be possessed by the devil. In Hawaii a whole watermelon is often rolled out the front door to help ease the spirit of someone recently deceased, and in Africa this fruit is considered a sacred gift to the divine Yoruban goddess Yemaya. Simply said, many global traditions have long recognized the healing and protective properties associated with eating this refreshing snack. Even the scent is said to allow you to lose weight. Now that really is a Happy Watermelon Day!

By Ellen Whitehurst for Astrology.com