Glossary

For the various Names of Netjer, I’m going to save myself some work and direct you to the House of Netjer’s Glossary of the Names. Below, however, are a few rather obscure Names with whom I have a relationship and who don’t appear in the HoN glossary:

Heru-hekenu – “Heru of Praises” or “Heru of the Unguent”; one of the many forms of the falcon-headed god Heru, considered to be a son of Bast and sometimes identified with Nefertem; also appears as a lion. One of the Seven Arrows of Bast.

Heryshef – “He Who Is upon His Lake”; ram-headed god worshiped at Hnes in Middle Egypt since the First Dynasty; associated with Wesir, Ra-Heruakhety, and Tem. (TourEgypt has a fairly detailed page on him: http://www.touregypt.net/featurestories/heryshef.htm.)

Wenut – “She of Wenu” or “The Swift One”; goddess of the fifteenth nome of Upper Egypt; depicted as a hare, a woman with a hare’s head, or a woman with a hare standard on her head. One of the Eyes of Ra, and also one of the Seven Arrows of Bast. A very joyful Goddess! (You can find a bit more info on her here: http://henadology.wordpress.com/theology/netjeru/wennut/.)

 

Akh (plural Akhu) – one of the Dead who has passed judgment; an ancestral spirit.

ba (plural bau)- one of the souls or spiritual bodies of a person. The ba is the intrinsic, immortal essence, which came into manifestation when our Parent(s) spoke our name and called us into being. Also a form of expression of a God: a statue can be the ba of a God, Heryshef is called a ba of Ra, etc.

Beloved – a short-hand term for the second category of Names that turns up in the Rite of Parent Divination. Whereas Parents create one’s essential being, Beloveds are generally thought of as Names who offer guidance, direction, and influence throughout one’s life. (Beloveds can also appear after the RPD, as a new God or Gods take special interest in a person; this involves a separate divination.) Technically, one is “Beloved of [Name],” just as one is “Son/Daughter of [Name],” but there isn’t an appropriate word for the reverse direction of that relationship (“One Who Loves” is poetic but awkward as a noun, and “Lover” gives entirely the wrong impression), so we just call them “Beloveds” for convenience’s sake. In Kemetic, the word for “beloved of” is “mery” (feminine “meryt”): “meryt Nut her Amun-Ra.” See also Rite of Parent Divination

dua – “praise” or “worship”; you’ll see it used here typically as a celebratory exclamation: “Dua Bast!”

Eye of Ra – an epithet of various Kemetic Goddesses, including Sekhmet, Hethert, Mut, Wadjet, and, of course, Bast. It signifies Ra’s power of vigilance and effective action (often destructive or protective action).

Fedw – a geomantic divination system that involves throwing a set of four sticks (“fedw” means “four”), taught by Hemet (AUS) to members of the House of Netjer.

heka – “authoritative speech”; the effective use of words in magic, prayer, and everyday speech and writing.

Hemet (AUS) – one of the most common ways that members of the House of Netjer refer to or address the Nisut, their spiritual leader. “Hemet” is actually a title that means something like “servant.” “(AUS),” a benediction commonly appended to her name or title, stands for “ankh, udja, seneb” (life, prosperity, health).

The House of Netjer – the religious organization of those who practice Kemetic Orthodoxy.

Imy-set’a – literally “on the arm” but can be translated roughly as “assistant” or “priest in training”; the title of a priest in training to become ordained clergy.

ka (plural kau) – one of the souls or spiritual bodies of a person. Often pictured as a spiritual double of the body, the ka is vital energy, life force, the energetic presence of personality or self. To “feed one’s ka” is to do positive things for oneself and the world; after death, the ka is fed by offerings and remembrance by the living.

Kemet – “black land”; the ancient Egyptians’ name for their country. (“Egypt” is actually derived from the Greek.)

Kemetic Orthodoxy – one particular modern expression of the religion of ancient Kemet. Note that there are a number of other Kemetic traditions as well as individual Kemetics who are not aligned with Kemetic Orthodoxy. In other words, you don’t have to be Orthodox to be Kemetic.

kingly ka – one of the souls of Heru, borne by the Nisut as part of his/her role as living connection between the human and divine worlds.

ma’at – one of the central tenets of Kemetic religion, and one of the hardest to quantify. Commonly translated as “truth,” it’s probably closer to rightness (right action and speech, integrity) and interconnectedness (cause and effect, consequences).

Names of Netjer/the Names – terms for the Gods of ancient Egypt, following the idea of the One and the Many — that all the Gods are both individual beings and expressions of a single Godness.

nekhtet – “victory”; a celebratory exclamation.

Netjer – “God”; the overarching and ineffable Divinity that manifests through the Names; sometimes used in lowercase to mean an individual God (“netjert” is the feminine; “netjeru” the plural).

netjeri – any spirit that isn’t a deceased human: nature spirits, animal spirits, servants of the Gods, etc.

Nisut – short for “Nisut-bity” (feminine Nisut-bityt), “(s)he of the Sedge and the Bee”; a term for the leading priest and ruler of Kemet, more popularly known as “Pharaoh” (from “Per-a’a,” or “Great House”). The current Kemetic Orthodox Nisut is Her Holiness Hekatawy I (Tamara L. Siuda) (AUS), founder of the House of Netjer. The Nisut holds the kingly ka and serves as a focal point of the religion and a connection between the human and divine worlds.

Parent(s) – the God or Gods who created the essence of a person. See also Rite of Parent Divination

Rite of Parent Divination (RPD) – a Kemetic Orthodox rite in which the Nisut performs a geomantic divination to determine a person’s divine Parent(s) and Beloved(s). This is a modern rite not attested to in antiquity and is meant as an initiation or birth into the community of Kemetic Orthodox. Once a Remetj has been divined, he or she has the option to become a Shemsu, a full convert to the faith. Note that it’s not necessary to have a Name as a Parent or Beloved in order to have a relationship with Him or Her.

Remetj – “royal subjects”; a person who has completed the House of Netjer’s beginners course and wishes to remain associated with the House but not to become a full convert. A Remetj may or may not choose to undergo the Rite of Parent Divination.

saq – “appearance”; full possession of a specially trained priest by a God during a state ritual.

sau – protective magic; also one who practices such magic. “Saut” in my shrine’s name (“watches over”) derives from the same root.

Senut – the daily shrine rite taught as part of the House of Netjer’s beginners course; a foundational part of the spiritual practice of all Kemetic Orthodox.

Shemsu/Shemsu-Ankh – “follower”; one who follows the Names of Netjer. Specifically, those members of the House of Netjer who have accepted the results of their Rite of Parent Divination and chosen to become full converts to the faith. While a Shemsu may still practice another religion, he or she is expected to put his or her Kemetic Parent(s) before all others. A Shemsu receives a religious name, generally incorporating a reference to his/her Parent(s). A Shemsu-Ankh is a Shemsu who has undertaken the Weshem-ib.

state shrine – a shrine created and maintained by a W’ab priest. The shrine includes a ritually consecrated, “open” statue of the W’ab’s Parent Name(s), through which the God is manifested. All W’abu perform a daily rite before the state shrine.

W’ab – a purification priest (feminine, W’abet), responsible for monitoring purity at and assisting in Kemetic Orthodox ritual and for maintaining a state shrine to his or her Parent Name(s). Unlike Imakhiu, W’abu aren’t legally ordained.

Wep Ronpet – the Kemetic New Year. Calculated according to the rising of the star Sirius, which means that it’s calculated differently depending on the time and location. The House of Netjer calculates the time of rising at the main temple in Chicago, so the new year for us starts in early August (in contrast to Neos Alexandria, for instance, which sets it in early September.)

Weshem-ib – “the testing of the heart”; a Kemetic Orthodox rite of passage. Those who pass through it and take the associated vows become Shemsu-Ankh, dedicated to serving Netjer, the Nisut, and the Kemetic Orthodox community.