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Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Egyptian Ceremony of Lighting the Fire


September 13-14 is the Egyptian Ceremony of Lighting the Fire, an Egyptian All Soul's day honoring Nepthys and the spirits of the dead. This was a festival of light, people placed candles, lanterns and lamps in front of their deities and statues of their ancestors who were encouraged by the light to journey back to loved ones for a visit.

In the book, 365 Goddess, the author explores a different goddess every day in the context of rituals, feast days, holidays, festivals, and celebrations from around the world. This is what she has to say about the Ceremony of Lighting the Fire:

"Today was Nepthys' festival day in ancient Egypt. As with other festivals for the dead, it was a time not only to propitiate the goddess with offerings of aromatic incense like myrrh but also to satisfy any wandering spirits. 

Themes and symbols for today are:  Death; Spirits; Rebirth Fire; Basket; Myrrh, and the presiding goddess is Nepthys.

"This Egyptian funerary goddess has a hawk for a sacred animal. Together they guide and watch the souls of our loved ones in the afterlife. In Egyptian tradition, Nepthys lives in the east, where she can receive the rising sun, a symbol of the hopefulness she can instill and of resurrection."

The book also includes ideas for simple magical rituals and/or easy spells that are in keeping with the theme for the day. And so we find that today is a good time for the following:

If someone you care about passed away during the last year, burn some incense for this goddess and leave a small basked filled with a token for her on your altar. This acts as a prayer to Nepthys to keep a watchful eye on that soul and grant them peace."

Other ideas include the following:

"If you find your sense of hopefulness waning under everyday pressures, light a candle honoring Nepthys today, and every day, until you sense a difference in attitude. Try to choose a candle whose color represents hope and change to you (sprout green is one good choice). Inscribe the candle with a symbol of what you most need to turn things around so that this goddess can shine dawn's revitalizing light into your heart and begin lifting some of that heaviness."

Note: This post was compiled by Shirley Twofeathers for Gypsy Magic, you may repost and share it only if you give me credit and a link back to this website. Blessed be.

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