Photo Essay: Set United With Ra
The Khnem-Aten or “Union with the Sun” is one of the holiest rites that can be performed for the Gods and Their cult images, and traditionally this is offered only once a year, on Wep-Ronpet or “New Year’s” Day. This solar radiation of holy objects was, in ancient times, carried out on Wep-Ronpet morning with a procession of the primary cult image of each temple to the roof of the Sanctuary, where the holy light of the New Year sun would bless and reinvigorate the Gods for the following year. This is a rite of divine renewal for the temple and humankind at large, and it is still being celebrated by adorers of the Netjeru today.
We observed Wep-Ronpet and the heliacal rising of Sopdet-Sirius on August 5th this year, and together with one of our principal kar-shrines containing the God Ptah, we brought out the Aegis of Djehuty and the Souls of Khmennu (which had been completed at the time of the Last Quarter Moon in May of 2017) and the Aegis of Sutekh Great of Strength, which was at that time only half way complete.
The Aegis of Sutekh Great of Strength was completed on Full Moon Day (Tep semdet) on September 6, 2017, and it was our decision- since the icon had not been complete for the Khnem-Aten on Wep-Ronpet morning- to hold a second “Union with the Sun” for Lord Set on Last Quarter Moon Day (Denat) on September 13. It also occurred to me that the four icons thus far created for our official Guild Shrine had never been sanctified together, nor received cultus at the same time. Thus we gathered Ptah-Sokar-Ausir Lord of the Secret Shrine, Anpu Lord of the Sacred Land, the Aegis of Djehuty and the Souls of Khmennu, and the Aegis of Sutekh Great of Strength, and made a pilgrimage to our holy desert site on the northwestern Utah desert’s Bonneville Salt Flats.