Heru ~ Djedi Sky Walker

horus2“Sky God… God of Hunting… Warrior God… Lord of the Horizon… Divine Falcon… He who came forth from Hapi [Africa’s Nile God]… Dweller in Sopdet [Star of Auset]… God of Kingship… Heir of his Father…” are some of the epithets ascribed to Heru, one of Africa’s most storied gods of salvation. Heru‘s hunting prowess is represented in the falcon or hawk whose right and left eyes respectively denote the sun and moonheru-eye-primary-colors1; and who is said to hold the stars in his speckled feathers as his wings create the wind. The circumstances of Heru’s placement in the Holy Trinity which includes Ausar (his father) and Auset (his mother), and his triumphant role in the battle against evil [Set], make him a model for saviors, heroes, and the super-heroes of story, religion, comic-book universes and their silver screen adaptations. The Kemetic Trinity itself may conceivably be connected to the older African Triad of Waset, namely Amun~Mut~Khonsu. phoenix-pyramidAmong his many epithets, Amun (“Amen” in prayer) – Lord of All, whose name means “invisible… mysterious of form… the hidden one” who encompasses every aspect of creation – is referred to as “Eldest of the Sky.” [Papyrus Boulaq 17]

The classic battle of “good versus evil” evolves in the immortal myth of Heru versus his “uncle” Set who not only murders beloved King Ausar in order to usurp the throne of Kemet, but mutilates Ausar’s body and scatters its pieces throughout the wilderness (diaspora). Auset roams the wilderness in search of her husband’s 14 pieces which she reassembles and mummifies, minus his penis which remains missing. However, through the summoning of magical powers, Ausar is enabled to posthumously impregnate Auset with the seed of their son, Heru. (In some versions, Heru is interpreted as the newborn sun rising “from a lotus bloom that expanded its leaves on the breast of the primordial deep.”) Ausar’s “resurrection” creates Auset’s “virgin birth” of “savior” Heru who, in his later years goes on to avenge his father’s murder and challenge Set for the throne of Kemet. seth-vs-horusThis epic struggle – which additionally exposes the pedophilic proclivities through which Set tried to overcome his “nephew” – is eventually settled before a Council of Elder Gods in favor of Heru as Kemet’s rightful heir and victor of the battle over evil/chaos.

Over the millennia Set became associated with the Hyksos – hostile foreign invaders from the desert or wilderness who enslaved the native men along with their wives and children. Thought to have the white skin and red hair attributed to his followers, Set’s links to Africa’s parched, infertile desert (the “red place”) expanded to represent all deserts and foreign lands. sethHis glyph appears in the words for “turmoil… confusion… illness… storm… and rage” which eventually cemented Set’s negative brand as god of the desert, storms, disorder/chaos, violence and foreign oppressors.

heru crownWhile Heru represented Lower Kemet, his eventual victory over Set gave him the distinction of being a unification god, which is symbolized in the pschent crown the avenging hero/Heru is typically portrayed wearing. The deshret (red portion of the crown) represents the North/Lower Kemet, while the hedjet (white portion) represents South/Upper Kemet. Sema-tawy – an expression meaning “Uniter of the Two Lands” – was an alternative depiction, showing the human trachea (like the Nile) unifying Kemet with the entwined plants of the papyrus (native to Lower Kemet) and lily (native to Upper Kemet). horus_goldenheadHeru, the falcon sky god, was worshipped at KomOmbo in a temple which was also dedicated to Sobek, a crocodile god associated with Set. There are depictions of Heru alternatively wearing the double feather crown that is characteristically associated with Amun“Eldest of the Sky” – who in his own right also holds the title “Lord of the Throne (Nst) of the Two Lands.” [Papyrus Boulaq 17]

A proverb from the Luxor Temple of Amun~Mut~Khonsu adjures: “Popular beliefs on essential matters must be examined in order to discover the original thought.” Several scholars have discussed at length the relationships one finds between original African mythology and the later popular beliefs of Christianity, including those mentioned above (“holy trinity… resurrection… virgin birth… savior…”) and Heru’s association with the Messianic star of Auset – Sopdet – which heralds the annual flooding of the Nile. A related proverb from the Luxor Temple advises: “Men need images. Lacking them they invent idols. Better then to found the images on realities that lead the true seeker to the source” …

Oscar (Hollywood 1929-)/Ptah (Kemet 760BCE-)

Oscar (Hollywood 1929-)/Ptah (Kemet 760BCE-)

One only need look at the Oscar statue to begin to understand how deeply bound the American image industry is to African Gods and their mythologies. So it’s unfortunate that the silver screen has become a showcase for white self-idolatry with scripts that continue this type of exploitation and cultural imperialism including (i) Nikolaj Coster-Waldau as Heru in the 2016 release of Director Alex Proyas’ vision of Gods of Egypt; (ii) Superman – as some would argue (ref: “Atlanta Black Star” article); and of course (iii) Star Wars:

Djedi were Masters of the Force in Kemet (ancient Egypt), magician priests who guarded powerful kings and their immortality. As with Star Wars, “Holy Grail” legends such as those of King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table evolved much, much later out of these Djedi histories from Kemet. The Djed – meaning pillar or backbone – is one of the symbols carried by kings of Kemet which is key to their immortality. The ‘dj’ root of the word denotes the serpent which has been awakened by the Djedi, and is raised up through the pillar to the crown of the Djedi King. Harnessing the Force for this inner ascension thus distinguished the Djedi, enabling successful initiates to advance in their abilities to access supernatural powers for use in feats of magic, overcoming enemies, healing, teleportation, resurrection, and so on. Djehuti order and balanceThe ultimate Djedi Master of the Force is said to be Djehuti (“Thoth” in the later Greek appropriations), Chief Scribe to the Gods of Kemet who himself mentored Heru and intervened in his struggles against Set. Djehuti is consort to Ma’at – goddess who represents the Kemetic concept of truth, balance, order, harmony and justice. It was Ma’at who is said to have decreed Heru as the rightful ruler of Kemet over Set, thus dispensing one of her main roles of defending the order of the universe from the chaos of the dark side.

In the alternate Star Wars universe, the battle between good and evil is waged by the “Jedi”/Djedi knights such as Luke Skywalker against the “Sith”/Set forces of darkness. Thus, some would extrapolate that this highly popular franchise is just another example of how Tinseltown’s “entertainment”-industry elite itself, and through such practices, acts as Setdjedwasrelief – profiting while programming consumer masses for dysfunction in its questionable custodianship of Africa’s cultural and spiritual resources; at the very least by not attributing proper credit, but also with its racist circumscriptions of “black” versus “white” roles…

horus-and-mutEnter the “True Seeker” mentioned in the proverb – AKA the African Djed-I Queen! (Note: the linked post discusses the bond between the Djed pillar and one of the African Queen’s roles.) As yet another proverb from the Luxor Temple of Amun~Mut~Khonsu states: “A phenomenon always arises from the interaction of complementarity. If you want something, look for the complement that will elicit it. Set causes Heru. Heru redeems Set.” Queens of the First Dynasty bore the title “She Who Sees Heru and Set in relation to the Djed-I Queen’s ideal consort being worthy as Heru (in His divine-masculine/higher nature) who has overcome Set (his chaos-inducing dysfunctional-shadow/lower nature). As discussed more fully in my post “Pyramid Wisdom & Story” – which offers an interpretation of the “true love written in the stone” [EW&F] (see music video link, plus interior design of the Great Pyramid of Giza below) – the archetypes actively embodied in the Djed-I Queen’s Heru/Hero are: (i) King; (ii) Warrior; (iii) Magician; & (iv) Lover. Halls of Amun post

alignmentHeru – as “God of Kingship” and African Hero – is the Djedi Sky Walker represented in the Hunter/Warrior constellation that the shaft in the King’s Chamber of the Great Pyramid of Giza points to. In Her aspect as Auset, the Djed-I Queen is the “Divine Mourner” and “True Seeker” who searches through the wilderness for Her true beloved – as Heru, in turn, hunts for His Djed-I Queen. She partners in the reparation of their Royal and Holy consortium, which weakens Set the stronger it gets. In Her aspect of Ma’at, the Djed-I Queen has discovered Her Truth and the Balance that must exist with Her beloved (Heru in His aspect of Djehuti ~ Magician & Scribe to the Gods) that will instill the Heavenly Order which prevents the universe from returning to a state of chaos (represented by “evil” Set). Her Lover – the Djedi King – is her Amun/Amen, and perhaps their HeruS/Hero journey is the quintessential telling of the epic and timeless story of the Love-of-Power [Set] being overcome by UBUNTU ~ the Power-of-Love ❤ ❤ ❤giza

I Re-Member ~ “Nakumbuka Day” (11/11)

“God never dies, therefore I cannot die”

Adinkra symbol of God’s omnipresence and the perpetual existence of man’s spirit… This symbol signifies the immortality of man’s soul, believed to be a part of God. Because the soul rests with God after death, it cannot die. Read More

Mut ~ Djed-I Queen

mut“Who is she that looketh forth as the morning, fair as the moon, clear as the sun, and terrible as an army with banners?” [Song of Songs 6:10 KJV] 

MUT [Mwt/Maut/Golden Dawn]  – meaning “mother,” is the name of the African Queen who giveth birth, but was herself not born of any. Through the Old Kingdom period of ancient Egypt (2,686-2,134 BCE) Mut was believed to have originally existed as the female aspect of Nun (primeval waters). Her stature subsequently evolved during the 18th Dynasty (1539-1292 BCE) as mother from whom the cosmos emerged. Read More

Pyramid Wisdom & Story

pyramid green“Pyramids are universal symbols of the human Self.” This statement caught my attention in the book entitled King, Warrior, Magician, Lover: Rediscovering the Archetypes of the Mature Masculine by Robert Moore (Jungian psychologist) and mythologist Douglas Gillette [NY: Harper Collins, 1990]. As I searched for how that was meant (“pyramid” as abstract geometric template, or as African architectural wonder and cultural treasure?) I got caught up instead in the discussion of masculine archetypes, one for each face of the pyramid. King, Warrior, Magician, Lover – the “mature” (men) archetypes – make up their own pyramid, but each has its “immature” (boy) correlates which make up a smaller pyramid within. Unfortunately for society, according to the scholars, “the devastating fact is that most men are fixated at an immature level of development.” Read More

Purple Reign ~ Symbols of African Sovereignty

A color with mystical and noble qualities, purple/violet is associated with royalty, spirituality, creativity, and higher realms. Representing the upper end of the visible color spectrum of Light, purple/violet is both a completion (spiritual mastery) as well as a beginning of the energy vibration beyond the physical. prince on guitarThis is the energy field in which one realizes the eternal union that exists between one’s self and the All (one’s infinite/higher/pure consciousness) – which is the goal of the soul’s journey in this life and beyond. Purple/violet governs love and the crown chakra, at the top of the head…

This post offers a brief look at the symbolism and meaning in the crowns worn by some of Africa’s sovereigns – gods and goddess archetypes from Kemet (ancient Egypt) – along with some of the fundamental cultural wisdom that governs their being and evolution. It’s posted during  African American Music Appreciation Month (June), in remembrance of the late Prince Rogers Nelson (June 7, 1958 – April 21, 2016 … “Sometimes It Snows In April”) – Purple Rain composer, performer and interpreter [*] of African symbols of love and royalty. This post honors the god(dess) who meets, supports and delivers us with such gifts of genius in our epic life quest for truth/consciousness/light, repair, and harmony. Read More

Reparations ~ Restoring the Divine Feminine: Ma’at

maafaAnd if thy brother, a Hebrew man, or a Hebrew woman, be sold unto thee, and serve thee six years; then in the seventh year thou shalt let him go free from thee. And when thou sendest him out free from thee, thou shalt not let him go away empty: thou shalt furnish him liberally out of thy flock, and out of thy floor, and out of thy winepress: of that wherewith the LORD thy God hath blessed thee thou shalt give unto him. And thou shalt remember that thou wast a bondman in the land of Egypt, and the LORD thy God redeemed thee: therefore I command thee this thing today. (Deuteronomy 15:12–15)

Ta-Nehisi Coates uses this Old Testament biblical quote at the beginning of his article, The Case for Reparations, in which he contends that America will never be whole until it has settled its moral debts. Read More

“Gods of Kemet”

Ptah (Kemet 760BCE-) / Oscar (Hollywood 1929-)

Ptah (Kemet 760BCE-) / Oscar (Hollywood 1929-)

SYNOPSIS [Movie?]: “The survival of humanity hangs in the balance when SET kills and mutilates the body of his brother AUSAR in his evil bid to usurp the throne of Kemet, in Africa’s Nile Valley Ma’atrix. The universe is plunged into chaos and conflict as Set scatters the dismembered parts of Ausar throughout the African Diaspora, forcing his brother’s lamenting widow, AUSET, to search and piece her husband’s body back together. Hoping to save the world and be re-paired with his true love, MA’AT, a scribe to the Gods of Kemet named DJEHUTI forms an alliance with HERU, the avenging son he’d helped Ausar and Auset posthumously conceive. Their battle against Set and his henchmen takes them across the wilderness – an apocalyptic testament of Set’s tumultuous rule; Read More

Swahili Wisdom/Sayings ~ Kangas

kangasExtremely popular throughout East Africa, the kanga (sometimes called leso) is a colorful rectangular piece of fabric that is distinguished by the different Kiswahili sayings or proverbs adorning each piece. Artifacts of the Swahili culture dating back to the mid 19th century, kangas are a well-admired form of clothing worn by women and often paired as shawls or headdresses, but are also used as curtains, tablecloths, bedding, mats, etc. Used by people of all faiths, kangas also often play a key role in major life passages such as birth, puberty, and marriage. Read More

AbaWanga

The AbaWanga Kingdom:

The Wanga (AbaWanga) are a nation of the Luhya people and a historical Kingdom within present day Kenya. They mainly occupy Kakamega County, one of the most densely populated counties in Kenya. The Wanga Kingdom was the most highly developed and centralised kingdom in Kenya’s entire history before the advent of British colonialism in the early 1900s. Today the AbaWanga number around 732,000 and retain the Nabongo as their cultural monarch. The current Nabongo is Peter Mumia II

Contents

  • 1 Origins
  • 2 Settlement
  • 3 Family and Traditional Life
  • 4 The Extent of the Wanga Kingdom
  • 5 Economic activities
  • 6 Nabongo Peter Mumia II
  • 7 See also
  • 8 External links
  • 9 Nabongo Cultural Centre
  • 10 The Way Forward
  • 11 Luwanga-English Dictionary

Origins

The Wanga ancestors were part of the migration that settled in the Kampala area and formed the Buganda Kingdom. In their culture, a king’s brother or cousin from the paternal line is eligible…

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National Clearinghouse on Families & Youth featured article

The National Clearinghouse on Families & Youth (NCFY) featured article on September 3rd, 2015 is entitled What Type of Messages Motivate Homeless Youth to Meet Their Health Needs?” Click on the link to read NCFY’s summary on “What its about… Why read it… Biggest takeaways from the research…”  conducted  and authored by Mutere, M. et al (2014) Homeless Youth Seeking Health & Life-Meaning through Popular Culture and the Arts. Child & Youth Services 35 (3): 273-287.  Read More

Adinkra ~ Symbols of African Wisdom

SANKOFA

SANKOFA

ADINKRA are ancient visual symbols created by the Akan of Ghana that represent and convey essential cultural concepts, values and traditional wisdom. As such, each Adinkra often has a corresponding proverb which imbues the symbol with rich meaning. According to Akan oral tradition, Adinkra images came into existence in the early 1800s as a design element on fabric. Traditionally Adinkra cloths were only worn by royalty and spiritual leaders on special occasions such as funerals. Read More

Proverbs from the Luxor Temple of Amun~Mut~Montu

“KNOW THY SELF” is one of the cardinal concepts in ancient African sacred wisdom which underlie many of the Proverbs that are inscribed into the walls of the Temple of Luxor in Egypt. There are six great temples in that area, the most renowned being Karnak (the northern sanctuary: Ipet Isut) and Luxor (the southern sanctuary: Ipet Resyt) – both headed by Amun. Ipet Isut and Ipet Resyt are situated on the east bank of Africa’s sacred Nile River at the fourth Upper nome in Uaset (Thebes in Greek). Built during the New Kingdom, Ipet Resyt was dedicated to the Kemetic Sacred Triad: Amun~Mut~Montu and was the site of the Opet Festival, an annual celebration of fertility in which a cult statue of the god Amun would be paraded in the upriver direction between the sacred compounds of the divine consorts.

Below are a selection of the powerful Proverbs inscribed on the external walls of Ipet Resyt that would be used as tools to teach BaNtu (‘people’… ‘of Ntu/God’) an understanding of the universe and of the divine order that exists between Wo/Man, the Creator(s), Nature, and the Heavens. More advanced teachings were contained in the inner sanctuaries of the Temple, whose access was restricted to initiates who’d proven themselves worthy…

heavn w'in

GODHOOD / DISCIPLESHIP

  • Wo/man, know yourself… and you shalt know [the] god/dess.
  • A wo/man’s heart is her/his own Neter [God/dess].
  • If the Master teaches what is error, the disciple’s submission is slavery. If he teaches truth, this submission is ennoblement.
  • Not even the greatest Master can go one step for his disciple; in himself he must experience each stage of developing consciousness. Therefore he will know nothing for which he is not ripe.
  • A phenomenon always arises from the interaction of complementarity. If you want something look for the complement that will elicit it. Set/Seth causes Heru/Horus. Heru/Horus redeems Set/Seth.
  • proverbs 2Altruism is the mark of a superior being.
  • Seek peacefully, you will find.
  • One’s moral qualities are measured by one’s deeds.
  • The kingdom of Heaven is already within you; if you understand yourself you will find it.
  • The body is the house of the God/dess. That is why it is said, “Wo/man know thyself.”

WISDOM / JUDGEMENT / MA’AT

  • Judge by cause, not by effect.
  • You will free yourself when you learn to be neutral and follow the instructions of your heart without letting things perturb you. This is the way of Ma’at.
  • Ma’at, who links universal to terrestrial, the divine with the human is incomprehensible to the cerebral intelligence.
  • Leave him in error who loves his error.heru sirius
  • In every vital activity it is the path that matters.
  • People bring about their own undoing through their tongues.
  • If you search for the laws of harmony, you will find knowledge.
  • If his heart rules him, his conscience will keep him out of trouble.
  • Every man is rich in excuses to safeguard his prejudices, his instincts, and his opinions.
  • The first concerning the ‘secrets’: all cognition comes from inside; we are therefore initiated only by ourselves, but the Master gives the keys. The second concerning the ‘way’: the seeker has need of a Master to guide him and lift him up when he falls, to lead him back to the right way when he strays.
  • Understanding develops by degrees.
  • As to deserving, know that the gift of Heaven is free; this gift of knowledge is so great that no effort whatever could hope to ‘deserve’ it.
  • An answer is profitable in proportion to the intensity of the quest.
  • Listen to your convictions, even if they seem absurd to your reason.
  • Know the world in yourself. Never look for yourself in the world, for this would be to project your illusion.
  • Each truth you learn will be, for you, as new as if it had never been written.

    Ma'at ~ Beloved of Djehuti

    Ma’at ~ Beloved of Djehuti

GOVERNING

  • Envious greed must govern to possess and ambition must possess to govern.
  • A house has the character of the man who lives in it.
  • Organization is impossible unless those who know the laws of harmony lay the foundation.
  • When the governing class isn’t chosen for quality it is chosen for material wealth: this always means decadence, the lowest stage a society can reach.

    was-djed-ankh symbols

    was-djed-ankh symbols

  • Two tendencies govern human choice and effort: the search after quantity and the search after quality. They classify humankind. Some follow Truth, others seek the way of animal instinct.
  • Social good is what brings peace to family and society.

NATURE AS TEACHER

  • The best and shortest road towards knowledge of truth is Nature.
  • If you are searching for a Neter (God/dess), observe Nature!
  • The body is the house of god/dess. That is why it is said, “Wo/man know yourself.”
  • To teach one must know the nature of those whom one is teaching.
  • All is within yourself. Know your most inward self and look for what corresponds with it in nature.
  • The seed cannot sprout upwards without simultaneously sending roots into the ground.
  • The seed includes all the possibilities of the tree…. The seed will develop these possibilities, however, only if it receives proper nourishment and corresponding energies from the sky.medu netr
  • Grain must return to the earth, die, and decompose for new growth to begin.
  • All seeds answer to light, but the color is different.
  • The plant reveals what is in the seed.
  • There grows no wheat where there is no grain.
  • The nut doesn’t reveal the tree it contains.
  • Always watch and follow nature.
  • All organs work together in the functioning of the whole.

KNOWLEDGE / TEACHING / LEARNING / INTELLIGENCE

  • The way of knowledge is narrow.
  • Your body is the temple of knowledge.
  • Knowledge is not necessarily wisdom.
  • Love is one thing, knowledge is another.
  • For knowledge… you should know that peace is an indispensable condition of getting it.
  • The first thing necessary in teaching is a master; the second is a pupil capable of carrying on the tradition.
  • We must not confuse mastery with mimicry, knowledge with superstitious ignorance.proverb
  • Popular beliefs on essential matters must be examined in order to discover the original thought.
  • Physical consciousness is indispensable for the achievement of knowledge.
  • A man can’t be judge of his neighbor’s intelligence. His own vital experience is never his neighbor’s.
  • Knowledge is consciousness of reality. Reality is the sum of the laws that govern nature and of the causes from which they flow.
  • A pupil may show you by his own efforts how much he deserves to learn from you.
  • When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.
  • Images are nearer reality than cold definitions.
  • Men need images. Lacking them they invent idols. Better then to found the images on realities that lead the true seeker to the source.
  • True sages are those who give what they have, without meanness and without secret!
  • eye-of-horusTrue teaching is not an accumulation of knowledge; it is an awakening of consciousness which goes through successive stages.
  • It is better not to know and to know that one does not know, than presumptuously to attribute some random meaning to symbols.
  • What reveals itself to me ceases to be mysterious for me alone. If I unveil it to anyone else, he hears mere words which betray the living sense: profanation, but never revelation.
  • An answer brings no illumination unless the question has matured to a point where it gives rise to this answer which thus becomes its fruit. Therefore learn how to put a question.
  • To know means to record in one’s memory; but to understand means to blend with the thing and to assimilate it in one’s self.
  • There are two kinds of error: blind credulity and piecemeal criticism. Never believe a word without putting its truth to the test; discernment does not grow in laziness; and this faculty of discernment is indispensable to the Seeker. Sound skepticism is the necessary condition for good discernment; but piecemeal criticism is an error.

VISION / CONSCIOUSNESS / AGENCY

  • proverbs 1Growth in consciousness doesn’t depend on the will of the intellect or its possibilities but on the intensity of the inner urge.
  • Routine and prejudice distort vision. Each man thinks his own horizon is the limit of the world.
  • By knowing one reaches belief. By doing one gains conviction. When you know, dare.
  • Our senses serve to affirm, not to know.
  • The key to all problems is the problem of consciousness.
  • Peace is the fruit of activity, not of sleep.
  • Exuberance is a good stimulus towards action, but the inner light grows in silence and concentration.
  • Every man must act in the rhythm of his time… such is wisdom.
  • Everyone finds himself in the world where he belongs. The essential thing is to have a fixed point from which to check its reality now and then.
  • Man must learn to increase his sense of responsibility and of the fact that everything he does will have its consequences.
  • If you would build something solid, don’t work with wind: always look for a fixed point, something you know that is stable… yourself.
  • If you would know yourself, take yourself as starting point and go back to its source; your beginning will disclose your end.
  • What you are doing does not matter so much as what you are learning from doing it.
  • The only thing that is humiliating is helplessness.
  • The only active force that arises out of possession is fear of losing the object of possession.
  • If you defy an enemy by doubting his courage you double it.
  • Experience will show you, a Master can only point the way.
Mut~Amun~Montu/Khonsu

Mut~Amun~Montu/Khonsu

Selected References:

De Lubicz, Isha Schwaller; Lamy, Lucie (1954). Her-Bak: The Living Face of Ancient Egypt. Hodder and Staughton.

De Lubicz, Isha Schwaller; Lamy, Lucie (1978). Her-Bak: Egyptian Initiate. Inner Traditions International.

De Lubicz, R.A. Schwaller; Lamy Lucie (1981). The Temple in Man: Sacred Architecture and the Perfect Man. Inner Traditions. (First published 1949)

Malaika Mutere, Ph.D. is author of Towards an Africa-centered and pan-African theory of communication: Ubuntu and the Oral Aesthetic perspective  Communicatio 38 (2) 2012: 147-163