Saturday, 5 December 2009

Scarabaeus & Bastet

Two monhts ago I visited Egypt. I wish I could stay longer there, so many things to discover, so many stories to hear. The story of our journey starts here Egypt Crusade 2009, the rest of the photos you can also find in my Photo Diary :]

During our many wanders I received a gift from a local shop - a small scarabaeus.

Scarab known also as kheper, and as the animal was associated with life and rebirth. Literally the word means "he who is coming into being". Khephir was a self-created god. The scarab lays its eggs in a ball of dung and rolls it to hide in a safe place. From this unlikely substance the Egyptians observed new life emerging, seemingly from the the earth. Hence he was a god of creation.
Early in Egyptian history the beetle also came to represent the soul rising from death.
Similarly, they believed that Khephri, in the form of a gigantic scarab, rolled the sun like a huge ball through the sky, then rolled it through the underworld to the eastern horizon. Each morning Khephri would renew the sun so that it could give life to all the world. As a deity closely associated with resurrection, Khephir was believed to be swallowed by his mother, Nut each evening and passed through her body to be reborn each morning.

And as a cat lover, I admire the Goddess Bastet.

Bastet was the goddess of fire, cats, of the home and pregnant women. The Goddess was represented as a desert cat, or a woman with the head of a cat.
 According to one myth, she was the personification of the soul of Isis. She was also called the "Lady of the East".
Bastet seemed to have two sides to her personality, docile and aggressive. Her docile and gentle side was displayed in her duties as a protector of the home, and pregnant women. Her aggressive and vicious nature was exposed in the accounts of battles in which the pharaoh was said to have slaughtered the enemy as Bastet slaughtered her victims.

1 comment:

  1. I love hearing about Bastet, thanks for posting about her!