TPE – How I Came to the Faith
I had originally planned on writing a blog about the Goddess Hathor and how she’s seemed to make her way into my life rather suddenly the last few months, but the energy wasn’t there.
Then, last night, I was at church teaching my class on the Kemetic Faith, and we’d opened the room to questions, and I got asked a question that I get asked quite a bit as a Pagan:
“How did you choose to be Kemetic? How does anyone choose the Gods they’re going to worship? I mean, there’s so many of them, do people just point and say, ‘That’s who I’m going to worship?’ How does that work? And why do they always seem to pick the same ones?”
Well, for me, it started when I was really young. My family was active in a local Presbyterian church. We went every Sunday, and I went through the 8th grade curriculum where we did intense Bible study, memorized a bunch of prayers and commandments and Bible verses, learned all about what it meant to be a Presbyterian, and then were confirmed into the church. We got a Bible as a gift and everyone prayed over us and promised to help guide us through life and into adulthood.
That is, of course, unless you’re gay, which it just so happens that I was.
The kids at the church already didn’t like me too much. I didn’t fit in with all of them. I was that weird girl who got along with the adults more than she did the kids my age. I tried to be friends with them, but I dreaded going to youth group because I never had any friends there. I started going to my friend’s church, which was a Methodist church, and I found the people there to be slightly nicer, but I think it was mostly because they liked my friend and I was there with her.
Once I started to realize that I was gay, and I think it was one of those things that everyone realized before I did, and that my differences might be more than just skin deep… The rumors started up, and eventually, I felt so unwelcomed at either church that I stopped going to both completely. It was really, really difficult for me because not only did I lose my church groups, but a good many number of my friends suddenly stopped talking to me as well. This was the time of the “gay by association” deal, and a lot of people I hung out with were assumed to be gay, even if they weren’t… and a lot of them stopped talking to me.
It also consumed a whole lot of my focus because holy shit… I was gay… and this was new.
And a little scary.
I found out about Paganism from this girl that I had the biggest crush on, who eventually turned into my first girlfriend, and I started reading about it because I wanted to know what she knew. Eventually, I started calling myself a Pagan or a Wiccan, but it never felt right. It got to the point where everything just felt forced, I felt abandoned, and alone.
And I got very, very depressed. My body is littered with the scars from that time in my life. I have tattoos to cover up some of them, but I can’t cover up my entire body. My friend, Alex, once told me to be careful with my self-injurious behavior because the feelings I had were fleeting… the scars would be permanent reminders.
And they are. They’re reminders of a place I won’t let myself go back to, and they’re reminders of how far I’ve come. Sometimes, I look at them, and I think about that poor, helpless, depressed girl who felt like she had no one and no where to go… and I just want to reach into the past and hug her.
One night, I had hurt myself, and it hadn’t helped me feel any better, and I was crying, laying in my bed, and just wanting to be gone. I don’t remember what had triggered me, but at that point in my life, it could have been anything. I thought to myself, “If there’s anybody out there listening to me.. Please… let me know that it’s going to be okay.”
That night, I dreamed that a great big black cat came in through my window… materializing from the moonlight… and curled up on my abdomen. I pet this cat and pet this cat and the whole time I felt safe. I felt warm. I felt loved and protected, and I knew everything was going to be okay. When I woke up, my hand fell to my stomach as if I’d actually been petting this cat, and I could still feel the way the fur felt on my hands and the weight on my stomach.
She never said anything, but I knew. Deep down, I had this feeling that the cat was Bastet, who had come to comfort me when I needed Her most.
It was around this time that I happened, accidentally, to find out about the Kemetic faith. I was screwing around online and found a little blurb about it. From there, I started researching everything that I could, and it all fit with what I already believed. It was at that point that I finally felt at home in my beliefs and my faith.
I explained to the girl in my class that I didn’t feel I had chosen said deity, but that said deity had chosen me. She replied, “Then why is it that the same few Gods keep choosing everyone? If that was the case, then you’d see more of them if they truly existed, wouldn’t you?”
The Kemetics believe in the power of words. When something is spoken or written down, it comes into existence. When things are no longer spoken about, they cease to exist. We see this a lot in ancient Egypt where the people would try to remove a person completely from the history books, or walls as it was. If the Gods with the largest cults were the ones who were written about the most, then we’d expect them to be the ones who survived the sands of time.
The more your name is written, the more likely you are to be remembered because it it more likely your name will be seen at least once. This means that you’re more likely, as the ancients believed, to continue on living. If that’s the case, then it’s understandable why some of the ancients have survived to call on people while others have fallen to the wayside.
We can’t be chosen by something that doesn’t exist, but since some of the Names have survived through time, the divine spiritual energy has also survived through time and can then choose humans as children and continue to protect and love us as we grown and interact with the physical world.