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Ancient Egyptian Wisdom ... Daily Practice

Thursday, June 11, 2009

My Path to Kemet and Our Daily Kemetic Prayer

My path to the spirituality of Ancient Kemet was certainly a long one. I always had an attraction to Ancient Egypt. I was enthralled by the myths, the "gods", and the architecture. I felt that something in my soul was at home whenever I contemplated the ways of our ancient ancestors.

I was raised a faithful Roman Catholic. I was baptised, received Holy Communion, did Penance, and attended Roman Catholic schools from kindergarten straight through high school. I even felt very at home in my parish church, Sacred Heart. It was and still is a loving supportive community. I think I began to become uncomfortable as I learned more about the history of Christianity and its role in the enslavement of African people. I thought, "How could I be part of an institution which had such a difficult history with Africans?" This period of study and introspection came to a culmination one lonely spring break in Ithaca as a read Christianity Before Christ by John G. Jackson. I couldn't put it down. I remember being completely engaged in it as I read the similarities between Jesus Christ and the deities of dozens of earlier religions. As I approached the end of the book, Ithaca was shrouded by an intense thunderstorm. A flash of lightning crackled through my dorm room window as I turned to the final page ... an application for the American Atheist Society! I thought God was sending me a dramatic message: "This book is forbidden!" I'm sure I must have watched one to many dramatic biblical movies like the Ten Commandments.

After thinking further about Christianity Before Christ, I realized that I wasn't an atheist. I'm still not sure if you can be an African and be an atheist. However, I did have grave concerns about the institution of Christianity. I always had a more ancient calling. I was just beginning to be able to recognize it. I later read Metu Neter, Volume 1 by Ra Un Nefer Amen and began studying with the Ausar Auset Society in Brooklyn. Soon I would be initiated into the Shrine of Ptah under Chief Priest Heru Ankh Ra Semahj Se Ptah (better known as Babaa Heru). It was at the Shrine of Ptah that I found a spiritual home. One of the first things I was taught me is to begin my day with a simple prayer; perhaps the earliest recorded prayer from the Maxims of Khensu-Hetep. We usually call it the Amma Su (Give Yourself). I hope you will also use this prayer to remind yourself of the divine being that you are. Tua to Nfr Ka Maat who scanned the prayer with its original Metu Neter glyphs.

Want to share your story about your path to whatever form of spirituality you practice? Please leave a comment. What were your triumphs and challenges? Does your mother continue to pray for your "immortal soul" like mine? Let's all dialougue with each other. I also try to respond to all of your comments as well. Shem em Hetep!

Give yourself to the one divine;
Keep Yourself daily for the divine;
and do it tomorrow just as you did it today.

1 comment:

Black Lotus said...

Htp, I keep this prayer with me on a card in my wallet so I can re-member it every day.