Sekhmet

Sekhmet at Kom Ombo

Five years ago today I stood face to face with the mighty Egyptian goddess Sekhmet.  It is quite a story and I think I’m finally ready to tell it.   This weekend is the third anniversary of the Egyptian Revolution and it was Sekhmet that got me a front row seat.  So let’s start with Sekhmet’s story.

The people of the Earth were acting up so the sun god Ra sent the lionheaded goddess Sekhmet to get everyone back in line.    Sekhmet got a little out of hand killing way too many people and so Ra had to figure out a way to stop her.   He laced some beer with drugs and red food coloring then poured it on the ground.   Sekhmet, thinking it was blood, drank the potion and finally stopped her rampage.    She retains her reputation for power and revenge.   Yikes!!

I was getting ready to go to Egypt for the first time when my teacher Page Bryant came to me with an assignment.   “Every full and new moon between 7 and 9 pm, find a quiet place and light a candle and tune into the energy of Sekhmet.”    My first reaction was “Aaaahhhhh,  Sekhmet is mean.  Can’t I have a nice goddess like Hathor or Isis?”    But when Page tells me to do something, I always listen and so for six months I worked on my assignment.   Sometimes I felt her energy and sometimes it was just a nice quiet time, but I did it faithfully.  The month before the trip I decided to look at the moon stages during my time in Egypt.  A new moon and solar eclipse fell on the day we were going to Sekhmet’s chapel at Karnak Temple.  I knew something was up.   This was no accident.

By the time I made it to Karnak Temple in Luxor, it had already been a very intense trip and I had been to five temples.  I was definitely on energetic overload so what was one more.    The group went straight to Sekhmet’s chapel which is off to the side of the complex and out of the main stream of visitors.   This tiny chapel has held the principle Sekhmet statue for 3500 years.  There are  hundreds of statues of Sekhmet around the world but this one is the seat of her power.   I was the last of the group to get into the small, dimly lit room.   There she was, I couldn’t touch her I was in such a stunned state.   I laid a few flowers, a small stone and oil at her feet as an offering and I just stood back to take it all in.  Toward the end of my visit her Egyptian guardian started to take the energy from her and place it on those of us who wanted it.    So that is me in the green shirt waiting to receive her energy.

Hands of Light

That night I saw the pictures.   They were stunning proof the energies we give names and personalities are really there.     There have been claims on the internet that those pictures were taken because of a device running in the chapel but that is not true.   The picture is because of the devotion of those who love and honor the goddess in all her many forms.  I know because I was there.

I call on Sekhmet often when I need courage and protection and help, I know she will be there.   I also know that she has a gentle and loving side protecting those who love the goddess.   I’m reminded of her when my sweet cat Persy climbs in my lap for love.    I’ve seen many of her statues and I always want to hold her hand and thank her.

On Thanksgiving weekend in 2010 some friends came to town and brought me a gift, a giant calendar of pictures of Tutankhamen’s treasures.   January’s picture was of my dear friend Sekhmet, three feet tall and of bright gold.   This calendar was from Germany and not even available in the US but she had found a way to make her presence very clear to me.   I was on the fence about going to Egypt for a third time but, when she showed up in such a unique way, how I could say no.  Six weeks later I was in Egypt when the Revolution broke out.  I was never afraid because I knew I had Sekhmet on my side and she wanted me there.   Thank goodness I listened.

Before you decide that I’ve lost my mind and am an idol worshiper, try to see these stories as  our limited minds trying to grasp the limitless universe.  We use these archetypal gods and goddesses to make sense of these unseen worlds.     They help us understand ourselves and our time on Earth.   Whether we call on goddesses or saints or great deities, the Universe is always there to bring us miracles.

sekhmetcalendar

Sekhmet, German Calendar

 

Advertisements

Merit Badges

cloisters

The Cloisters, New York City

When I was a teen I belonged to an organization called Pathfinders, similar to Girl Scouts but sponsored by my church.   We did typical scouting activities like camping and hiking, multi-church gatherings, campfires, singing and merit badges.   I can’t remember which badges I received but I was once “Pathfinder of the Year” so I must have done my work.   My sister and I still sing the Pathfinder song when we get together.

I think there should be merit badges for adults.   I would have finished several this year.   My most important badge is Driving in New York City, followed by Combining Two Houses.   I have also received the badge, Traveling with Elderly,   which has lots of complicated requirements.   In the past, I got Suzuki Violin Mom, a particularly arduous one and the 9 Seasons of Nutcracker Ballet, which was lots more fun

In 2014 I’m planning for my biggest merit badge yet, Walk Across Spain.   Alexandra and I are headed out on an epic mother/daughter quest to walk The Camino.    We leave just after she finishes spring term and days after my 50th birthday.   We are getting our gear together and putting in lots of hours walking and learning the ancient pilgrim songs

The Camino is a 1000 year old pilgrimage from southern France, across the Pyrenees to the Western Coast of Spain and the town of Compestelo.  There, pilgrims gather at the Cathedral to Saint James (Santiago) to have their names read and receive certificates after their long walk.   You must walk at least 60 of the 500 miles to qualify

I went back to New York City in December to pick up Alexandra and I had a few things I wanted to do there.   I wanted to go to the Metropolitan Opera, see Lion King on Broadway, and go to the Cloisters, the Metropolitan Museum’s medieval collection.   I’ve wanted to go to the Cloisters for many years to see the Unicorn Tapestries.   I’ve seen other Unicorn Tapestries in Paris and I wrote about them earlier.   I love the mythical stories and the amazing craftsmanship of the tapestries.    It was snowing the morning I went and was a challenge to get to there but worth it.   I took my time and looked at everything.

My surprise came at the very end when I went to an out-of-the-way display case and read the descriptions of some very plain pieces of metal.    They were merit badges and souvenirs from the medieval pilgrimages to the Cathedral of Santiago de Compestelo and Canterbury Cathedral.

Merit badges are not easy to get but in the doing bring immense gifts and joys.   The deeper knowledge of the world and self are the true merit received and never needs to be displayed.    So, in 2014 find a merit badge you would like to work on and let me know how it goes.

unicorn tapestrypilgrim badges

Unicorn Tapestry                                Pilgrim Badges

More on The Camino:

The Camino—Shirley MacLaine

The Way–movie by Martin Sheen

What the Psychic Told the Pilgrim—Jane Christmas