Grave Moss & Stars

Archive for the ‘Sacred Creativity’ Category

a million of music

My body speaks, my lips repeat
pure Ihy-music for Hethert.
Music, millions
and hundreds and thousands of it,
Because You love music,
a million of music for Your ka,
In all Your places.

~ King Antef (source: Hathor Rising, A. Roberts)

Personal conjecture: Ihy is Hethert’s (Hathor’s) son, Whose name reflects the jubilation of musical instruments in the sound they produce and in the act of playing them. “Ihy-music” in this may indicate both Ihy, Whose music soothes and pleases His mother, and also, more generally, ecstatic music.

Black Cat, Red God

A gift for my sister, Saryt, of her Parents, Set and Bast.

For Tasenetnofret

I am toying with the idea of making something extra-colorful on every one of Her days; you can see a hint of Her here, on the far left, overlooking the colors I have poured for Her as an offering.

Tasenetnofret, The Good Sister

Alternate title: “Colorless,” My Ass

In the Kemetic calendar, today is a day for Tasenetnofret, The Good Sister, a Name Who is a form of Hethert (Hathor), but also an epithet of Nebt-het (Nephthys). This is the one place I have found where my Mothers, Nebt-het and Hethert-Nut, actually overlap.

While idly browsing the Wepwawet Wiki, looking at hieroglyphs, I stumbled across Tasenetnofret’s page. She was described as “a colorless manifestation of Hethert in the role of divine wife.”

I’m pretty sure my reaction was along the lines of “oh no you din’t!” My Mothers? Colorless?!

(Please note that I am not actually taking offense at the editors of Wepwawet Wiki. I realize there’s not a lot of sources out there detailing Tasenetnofret, which can give any Netjeru a lackluster image. I felt compelled to action, not outrage. ~_^)

So, in an immediate effort to rectify this monochromatic statement, I went about painting a very colorful gift for Tasenetnofret:

Dua Tasenetnofret! May Your eyes feast on the most vivid of beautiful colors, always.

Kemetic Storytellers, Episode 01

I’m delighted to share that the first episode of Kemetic Storytellers has been released!

A House of Netjer project spear-headed by Mose, Kemetic Storytellers features Kemetic stories in a radio-play format, written and voice-acted by modern Kemetics. We aim to entertain, educate, and express our creativity.

This first episode features two stories, Beauty & The Beak and Bring The Flood, retellings of the Distant Goddess myth and the Establishment of the Celestial Cow myth (aka Moomas). I was proud to provide the intro music for the project, as well as the artwork for both stories (one digital art collage and two paintings).

Please take a look and a listen, and enjoy!

beading for the dead

I’ve been thinking about making a beaded necklace for my akhu for a while now. One night, a week or so back, I got the compulsion and started digging through my stock to see what felt right. All I knew is that I wanted beads of roughly the same size.

I wound up with no bead repeated, beads “the color of laughter,” and some of my most treasured: lapis lazuli and turquoise. There are beads for my mom’s fianc√©’s heritage and an amethyst and a grey-black stone bead as a nod to Nebt-het and Yinepu, as well as glass, painted wood, various other stone beads, cloisonne, and tiger’s eye.

It had turned into a bracelet, with even the gold and silver of the magnetic clasp alternating. And I love it.

Dua akhu!

PBP Fridays: J is for Sacred Jewelry

(I know I’ve missed like three posts, but I’m going to hop in here and make up for the others later. :D)

I have talked about writing music and painting with and for gods before, but at the time, I had never set foot in the seductive manse of beadwork. I think it’s definitely time for me to discuss making sacred jewelry with and for my beloved Netjeru (Egyptian deities).

Myself, I adore the concept of religious and/or spiritual jewelry, especially of the daily-wear variety. I like having something on me to touch and see that reminds me of and connects me with my gods (or a particular ideal or myth or animal or… you get the point). My love gave me a necklace he made and had worn for years before we met, and I wear it every day; it’s a link to him and a representation of us together.

Currently, I also wear a silver lion’s-head ring (for Ma’ahes) every day, a single amethyst earring (for Nebt-het), and most days, either my scorpion talisman or the new scorpion necklace (for Serqet), as well as a pewter Sekhmet pendant. My sacred jewelry is very important to me, and so, it’s not a huge surprise that, once I figured out I might actually be able to craft things that did not look like a middle-schooler made them at summer camp, I wanted to make jewelry for my gods.

To date, I have made six pieces of a spiritual bend:

And I’ve got to say, this is really addictive, guys.

Much like writing a song or doing a painting for a deity, I get the same intuitive nudges on what fits and what doesn’t, the same instinctive yes/no reaction when I ask a question of “want this?” or “how about this?” that helps me flesh out and finish a piece. I have gone shopping in our local bead store and sent out an open invitation to my gods to let me know if They spot something They’d like. It’s an amazing and admittedly strange sensation, to know that I’ll get a very firm answer without having to trance, meditate, or be in ritual space. I couldn’t explain it if I tried, but I can’t complain: so far it’s resulted in a well-received finished piece of jewelry every time!

For my newfound love of beading, and also my slightly-less-new-but-still-immense love of paintings, I decided to open a wee Etsy shoppe to sell sigils, mythological paintings, and hand-made jewelry. My lovely partner, who has been making jewelry for far longer than I, has also contributed his time and craft to the somewhat thrilling project that we’re calling Mythic Curios. I even made a small website to explain the process of making the sigils and the magic behind them. Right now, my favorite part of that site is our Curio Archive, which has a running photographic list of all of our projects, including the ones that won’t appear on Etsy (such as personal projects and gifts).

I can’t wait for Mythic Curios to become a little more well-known – I’m really looking forward to folks wanting custom pieces for their specific gods (or just themselves!), because I adore making items to request! It’s a challenge and an adventure and a chance for me to interact with a new deity– or one I already know in a new way.

To encourage some conversation here, tell me about your own crafting or wearing of spiritual or otherwise meaningful jewelry! I’d love to hear stories and see photos if you’ve got ’em. :)

This post brought to you as part of the Pagan Blog Project.

necklaces for Ma’ahes and Serqet!

Guys, this whole making-jewelry thing is kind of addictive. Just sayin’.

Necklace for Ma’ahes, the Living Lion, with a nod towards His Nubian Name of Apedemak:

Necklace for Serqet, Our Lady of Scorpions:

Dua Ma’ahes! Dua Serqet!

another shiny for Hethert-Nut

So, I don’t bead, right, but I sort of beaded, and this happened, and I pretty much adore it:

It’s for Hethert-Nut, the Gold of the Gods, the Starry Sky. The pendant is Blue John, a special kind of fluorite only found in Derbyshire in the UK, and was a gift from British friends years ago.

As a result of this necklace, I think I’ll be trying my hand at a lot more jewelry… =3

Dua Hethert-Nut!

Announcing Mythic Curios!

My partner and I were struck by an idea on April’s Friday the 13th and, enthusiastically driven to act on it for some clearly unknowable reason (ahem), I built a web presence around it that very evening. We spent the next couple weeks fleshing it out and crafting, and well, it’s about due time I share it here, since the news has officially gotten out. :D

Allow me to introduce to you Mythic Curios, an online shoppe featuring custom magic sigils, fantastical jewelry, and mythological paintings by yours truly and the brilliant love of my life! We even put together a small website to explore the idea of paying for magic and the kinds of magic that we use in the sigils and some paintings – because, you know, it’s sort of important to know what’s going on behind the Seen when messing with magical objects.

I am really excited about this project and very proud of the work we’re doing. This is not an attempt to build a livelihood – our prices are way too low for that! It’s a way to share something we absolutely love to create and look at and wear, a way to help people by bringing magic and unique beauty into their lives, and also a way to fund future creations so we don’t eat ramen in the name of buying more beads and acrylics. (Because, seriously, we would. Art trumps fine food!)

If you’re at all interested in magical art or handmade jewelry, please do peruse the curio archive and spread the word to others who might like it! And, of course, we’d love the chance to make you your own painting or piece of jewelry. :)

art as magic, magic as art

What happens when you combine a thorough guide to sigil theory and construction, my recent-found love of painting, and inspiration from some beautiful handmade magic scrolls?

Well, you get this:

(Left side for color distinction, right side for sheer shininess.)

The first sigil of a shoal that I intend to hang over the painted tapestry that’s over my altar. You’ll notice I used Kalash, my artificial alphabet, instead of English script to create the sigil itself; that’s because I already use Kalash for prayers and charms, and also because it looks really friggin’ cool, especially when I get to arrange the letters artistically like this.

This sigil is for my partner J and I both, but the initial idea was his: he wanted a sigil for “inspired action,” or inspiration with the capacity/willingness to manifest it into reality. The blue is vivid and deep, the primordial waters, cauldron of life; the sigil is in gold, for creativity and molten ore; strands of sacred purple come down from the stars as inspiration, and orange roots snake down to reach the fertile earth below and manifest the ideas.

Working through this has delighted my inner facets of geek in so many ways. Figuring out how to phrase the goal/intention to be linguistically aesthetic in English, psychologically effective, and magically active; using Kalash to make it visually cryptic and elaborate and pleasing to look at; using my knowledge of magical color symbolism and the psychology of color; and then getting to paint it myself! And that’s not even going into any rituals or magic that will be performed over/for the finished painting before I hang it as “active” on my wall. :D

In short, I loved doing this, and I’m eager to do the next!

shrine update

I’m toying with the idea of posting photos every month of my shrine, just to see how it changes. Right now, it’s had a definite expansion: I oil-painted two small shelves to give me more surface area, which means more of the things inside the altar itself get to be placed in open air.

Here’s the shrine in total; you can see my corkboard up on the wall where I keep my religious/otherwise sacred jewelry when I’m not wearing it, including Sekhmet’s pendant and Serqet’s amulet:

To the left, I’ve added a red-painted shelf for Sekhmet alone, as I have the most icons of Her and I feel they deserve a special place:

To the right, I added a teal-and-purple shelf. I wasn’t sure Who it’d be for while I was painting it, but I knew I wanted a place to showcase my non-Sekhmet, non-RPD gods icons, so here we have Twtw and Renenutet:

I did a second painting recently for Hethert-Nut, which She requested; She liked the first one, but She prefers the iconography of Mehet-Weret, a golden cow with deep blue stars. I added the dark indigo background as tribute to the royal purple color I associate with Her. (Also, as most of my paintings, this one is metallic, so it takes poor photos. Also also, I did not use a reference for the cow shape, which is why She looks slightly deer-like.)

And lastly, I acquired a gorgeous statue of and for Ma’ahes, made by the ever-fabulous Nicolas of Shadow of the Sphinx. (He also made my little Sekhmet votive and both Twtw’s and Renenutet’s statues.) People, if you ever need any Egyptian statuary, go to this artisan first – there is no one better in terms of courtesy, skill, affordability, and receptivity to custom work.

Today I do senut, which I intend to make a regular practice as a full-fledged, formal ritual on the first weekend of every month. In it, I will offer my gods the following, and then ask each of Them for a message concerning the month ahead, via my divination tools (cards or coins, whichever They each prefer).

hetep-di-nisut, an offering which the King gives:

To Sekhmet, I offer Her the red shelf, a sacred place of Her own.

To Nebt-het, I offer a black bone ankh and a stormy grey-violet amethyst.

To Hethert-Nut, I offer Her the second painting, may it please Her, as well as night-sky-with-stars beads I found today.

To Ma’ahes, I offer the lion statue.

To Serqet, I offer a banana-milk smoothie. (Don’t look at me, She requested it.)

To Ma’at, I offer a white bird made of shell.

To Set, in thanks for His oracle assistance, I offer peppered jerky and two slim jims, as promised.

And to my akhu, I offer a painting of us; may I always think of my ancestors fondly. (I will finish it before senut today and post a picture of it later.)

Dua Netjer!

finished akhu painting

I did this painting of and for my akhu, my ancestors, the blessed dead. It was made with their guidance, which was considerably lighter/subtler than I receive when painting with Netjeru, but I still do feel they had a hand in it. (As usual, forgive the awkwardness that is photographing metallic paints. I swear I will figure out a good way to do that someday.)

Hail akhu, true of voice, shining as stars in the vault of Nut! May you receive a thousand of all good and pure things.