Awakening of Aset by the Majesty of Ra

I am trying to write a ritual for Tuesday’s Awakening of Aset festival.

And…I can’t.

I don’t know how. I have never been trained how to write ritual.

I can tell you the basics of water, flame and fragrance in the daily ritual and Zep Tepi. I get those things.

What I don’t know what to do is write a ritual for a specific festival. How do I take “Awakening of Aset by the Majesty of Ra” and turn it into a full ritual?

Doing Senut and then taking Aset’s statue out into the sunlight or lighting candles if no sunlight is available seems like a cop-out. There needs to be something more here.

Like most uniting with Ra festivals, the Eye Goddess unifies with Ra to renew all of creation. She is His daughter here, His Eye of Ra, His Fierce Protectress and the Solar Goddess of the Dawn. She is the Leopard, the Lioness, the Cobra. She’s offered a sistrum (pl. sistra) to pacify Her rage, to dispel evil. She’s offered a mirror to gaze into Her Solar Power and Beauty. She’s offered a Menat to keep the darkness at bay with magical precious stone beads and rattling sounds. She’s praised and hailed as a Goddess whose Power is glorified when She unites with Her Father.

She is Ra’s Power. She is His Flame. He may lead, but She avenges. She destroys the enemies of Ra and Her son and brother. She is armed with a scimitar and a wailing scream that can stop the Sun God in His tracks. She owns His Name.

She is the Goddess of all Magical Power and the authority to rule.

And this is Her time in the light.

How do I even begin to capture this so that others may experience this wonder?

Note:

There are many festivals that celebrate An Eye Goddess’s unification with the Sundisk and another festival of Pacifying the Eye Goddess. Wine, sistra and menat-necklaces were offered at Eye Goddess or Distant Goddess feasts and mirrors and sistra were offered at the unification with Ra festivals.

For more information: Willems, Harco, and Filip Coppens, Marleen De Meyer and Peter Dils. The Temple of Shanhur: Volume 1. (Peeters, 2003), 40-42.

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9 thoughts on “Awakening of Aset by the Majesty of Ra

  1. I’ve found it easier if I have a ritual structure to work from. I can just ‘fill in the blanks’, so to speak, and tailor the ritual to suit the occasion. I used the daily temple rite for Amun-Ra at Karnak as a base to work from when I was writing a weekly rite for Ra. (I can’t find the site I found that rite on, though, so I can’t offer a link.) Would you like me to send you the ritual and the outline I used? When I perform it, it takes about an hour? Maybe forty-five minutes? It depends on how long you take for purifications, mostly. It might not be perfectly suited to your tastes, but I would advise you to modify it to suit your needs. You might want to make it much shorter, if you don’t want to spend an hour in shrine, for example. I’ve also heard that Richard Reidy’s Eternal Egypt book is good for temple-style Egyptian rites. You might also find that a good resource too, if you don’t already have it. (I don’t have it yet; I’m still dithering over whether I really want a whole book on temple rites, which don’t particularly interest me as a potential aspect of my religious practice.)

  2. I think that going outside might be a good idea. Perhaps doing initial rituals inside (a call to awake in peace, offerings of incense, water, food, etc- basically think of the first parts of Reidy’s rites). Then take her statue outside- whether on a barque, or something special- or just in your hands. Place her outside somewhere nice where she can get some sun. Maybe offer her sistra and menit- music and such. Maybe use the mirror to reflect some light on her. Sit out there and soak up some rays with her – hell you colud share a meal with her out there if you wanted, and then bring her inside, finish with the typical stuff for afterwards (I also would pull from Reidy for this sort of thing).

    • That’s a good idea. I just translated an Awakening hymn for Aset from al-Qal’a Temple a week or so ago. I was thinking of using that.

      Thank you. I’ll look again at Reidy’s book and see if something jogs my brain.

      So my ritual may look something like:

      Awakening Aset
      Offer incense, candles and libation
      Aset’s solar hymn
      Offer offerings
      Offer Sistrum, Menat and Mirror
      Take Her outside in the sunlight
      Bring Her inside and finish the ritual

      Thank you for your help.

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