There is an old adage that music is the universal language. Music is so deep a part of the human experience that it affects our brains in a way that no other activity or creative art does. It makes sense, therefore, that music would be such a popular language of expression for the relationships we have with the gods. We use music to help us focus our meditations, to communicate our experiences, to engage in worship — even just to feel connected in our everyday lives.
Here are my top ten tunes for Wepwawet, presented in no particular order, for your listening pleasure. Some of them have been shared for Music Monday before, so I’ll try to give you a little commentary this time to keep things interesting.😉
So here’s the thing… you know that jackal-headed guy?
No, not him — that’s Anubis (or Yinepu, or Anoup, or Anpu, or… you get the idea).
This guy! This is Wepwawet. Sometimes you might hear him called Upwawet, or Upwaut, or Upuat, or even just Wpwwt. And he’s kind of a big deal.
His name means “Opener of Ways”, and that can be interpreted in a lot of different ways. A lot. Sometimes it means opening the way for the dead.
Sometimes it means opening the way for the military, being carried on a standard.
Sometimes there’s even TWO of him, that’s how important he is.
He has associations with legitimizing the king’s reign through this thing called the Sed festival. He also makes sure the king gets to the right place in the afterlife. Here he is hangin’ with his BFF, Seti I.
He looks pretty much like any other jackal-headed deity, to be honest. He gets confused with Anubis/Yinepu/Anpu/etc. quite a lot. It’s a little confusing, especially when they show up in the same place from time to time.
He’s got some bitchin’ nicknames, too. Some people call him He Who Possesses the Two Lands in Triumph. Some people call him Lord of Carnage. Others call him Lord of Joy. (He’s got a pretty good reputation.)
So why am I raving about this most excellent dude? Well, every year the House of Netjer holds a contest as a fundraiser. It’s almost like the Penny Wars, if you ever played those in high school or summer camp. The goal is to collect the most votes for your team. Each vote is a small donation (in this case, anything over $1), limit 1 per day. Don’t forget to write that you’re voting for Wepwawet in the donation notes!
This year, I am pushing HARD to get Himself a spot in the winners’ circle. Don’t you think he deserves it?
When we talk about Ancient Egypt, we’re really talking about a society that spanned thousands of years. The culture varied, social norms varied — while the ancient people valued ma’at, tradition, and consistency, there is evidence in surviving art and literature of an evolving people.
I’ll be honest – I don’t really follow what’s going on with the larger polytheist community. Even though I have a tumblr, I don’t really use it to socialize. I haven’t had that kind of time (though now that I’m about to finish my master’s degree, that might change). But I’ve seen some talk about people feeling unwelcome — or being unwelcome — because of how they worship.
Here’s the thing: if Kemet itself varied over time, and we are basing what we do off of Kemet, doesn’t it stand to reason that there’s room for all of us under the umbrella? I might not agree with how some people choose to honor the gods, but I certainly won’t tell them not to do it that way. And if someone tells me I’m worshiping wrong, I don’t immediately assume I’m in the wrong.
I can’t tell anyone what to do. I will suggest that anyone who is thinking of telling someone they’re wrong in their relationship with the gods, should take a step back and question why they are so concerned with what other people are doing, and not what they are doing. I will also suggest that anyone who hears that what they are doing is wrong should remember that Kemet itself contained a variety of attitudes toward the gods.
I’m told that even the ancients were making complaints about each other – see “The Admonitions of Ipu-wer” or “The Discourse of a Man and his Ba”. And somehow, they survived thousands of years. If they can do it, so can we.