Look how simple this fledgling Kemetic altar and shrine is. Many would deem it unworthy but you know what? As soon as I set this up, the energy was so powerful, it almost made me dizzy. I’ll explain why in this post.
I’ve included a picture of my very first Kemetic altar and shrine to demonstrate that if you feel a connection to your netjeru or gods and goddesses, you can express that connection as soon as you feel moved to do so. You don’t need to spend an exorbitant amount of money on Egyptian stuff to get started in your Kemetic practice. All that can come later, as you learn to discern what kinds of tools you need and what offerings you would like to make. Then it might be time for some shopping, and shopping with your netjeru can be a lot of fun. I took mine to Target and we had a ball. No kidding!
When I took the first step in creating my own Kemetic altar and shrine, I will be completely honest and say, I didn’t really know what I was doing. But I allowed my intuition to guide me: I grabbed a trinket box, a clean linen case (that came with the sheet set), a clean plate with a fresh piece of fruit on top as an offering (which a co-worker had grown at home and brought to the staff room). Next, I placed two Himalayan salt candle holders on either side and lit the candles. Then I placed a quartz crystal cluster in front and spoke a few words of dedication. That’s all I did and yet, that’s all I needed to do. It worked, as they say.
Just because I was ignorant of advanced concepts in Kemetic religion, I still knew how to say thank you. And so do you, so don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t be a Kemetic practitioner. You can!
My netjeru had already done so much to help me get my life on track after the first wave of COVID-19. Why would ancient Egyptian deities care about what happens to us mortal human beings? Because if we are stable and thriving, and caring for the planet and each other, then the universe is a more stable and thriving place also, which contributes to Ma’at or balance and order and banishes chaos and disorder.
Once I set up this very simple but effective Kemetic altar and shrine, the response was immediate. I went into a spontaneous meditation, even my eye lids started fluttering (which is an indicator of an altered state of consciousness). I connected with Ahsmet’h who is an aspect of Isis that made herself known to me (who anyone of pure intent is welcome to work with). Isis was showing me all sorts of things and giving me messages, which I’ll share in later posts to avoid going off-topic.
If you don’t have meditation skills yet or the types of experiences mentioned above, don’t worry! You will develop them. Start off simple and you will progress.
The only caution I would advise is to have a dish of sea salt nearby to avoid any possible interference from negative energy, plus it will help to purify your new Kemetic altar and shrine. Since I was using Himalayan salt candle holders, I omitted this step. Later, as you build your skills, you might acquire or learn how to make natron which is a special kind of salt we use in Kemetic and pagan practices. In a pinch, sea salt (not table salt) will do.
Lastly, it might help to know the differences and similarities between an altar and a shrine. An altar is a spiritual work space. A shrine is a spiritual space for worship or reverence. Not that these differences are vastly important, as both are sacred spaces. A shrine usually serves a singular purpose, such as honouring the memory of a loved one or the worship of a particular deity. The use of a shrine is often fixed in nature. An altar is often more flexible and multi-purpose in nature. An altar holds the space for an array of spiritual work, including laying out the tools needed to conduct your work. And yes, this can also include magic and divination! Altars and shrines can be set up side by side, or they can be blended and combined, or left as seperate and distinct spaces. My recommendation is to allow your intuition — and your netjeru — to guide you.
Thank you for reading Kemetic Blog. Have fun!