Egyptian Gods/Goddesses

Since ancient times, religion was already a very important part of the lives of ancient Egyptians. They believed that the phenomenon of nature was linked to the divine forces of nature. Because of this, they started to worship and believe in a multitude of Gods.

The true nature of Gods was believed to be mysterious, terrifying and unpredictable. The Egyptians themselves…well…you could say they enjoyed talking about Gods. Much as they are feared, the Gods are loved by their people equally as much too.

Hundreds of Gods were honoured by everyone throughout the land in a festival that lasted for a month in the flood season when farmers did no work in the fields. At home, lesser gods were turned to for help with everyday problems.

Similar to that of Romans and Greeks, the Egyptian Gods seemed to be in existence for the sake of storytelling. Stories which made the Gods less unreachable. It was comforting to know that there is someone out there in the universe, going through similar events which civilization themselves go through in their daily events: Laughter, Sorrow, Problems etc. This, in a way, taught the Egyptian Civilization how to relate better to their universe: by learning more about their Gods on an intimate level.

A belief system which was part totemism, part polytheism, and part ancestor worship was practiced by the ancient Egyptians. If any of the terms are foreign to you, here are the definitions:

Totemism:
system of belief in which humans are said to have kinship or a mystical relationship with a spirit-being, such as an animal or plant. The entity, or totem, is thought to interact with a given kin group or an individual and to serve as their emblem or symbol.

Polytheism:
The belief in, and consequent worship of, many gods.

Ancestor Worship:
The basis of ancestor worship seems to stem from two principle ideas: (1) that “those who have gone before” have a continual and beneficent interest in the affairs of the living; and (2) more widespread, uneasiness, fear of the dead, with practices to placate them.

Gods

Of course, I shall only list out the more commonly heard ones. Well, cause if I were to list out every single one, I think you all will be reading my post from sunrise to sunset =) (Honestly? I’m just lazy ^^) Anyway, here they are: Let’s give a warm welcome to the Gods of Egypt:

Amun-Re or (Amon-Ra)

  • Sun God
  • “Ra”
  • Considered King of the Gods (Think of him as an equivalent to Zeus/Jade Emperor/
  • Representation: Man with the falcon’s head and a sun
  • Symbols: Bennu (Phoenix), Obelisk, pyramid, Udjat (Eye of Horus), sun, falcon, bull
  • Name was thought to mean “creative power” with “Creator” as the proper name
  • Father of Shu and Tefnut
  • Grandfather of Nut and Geb
  • Great-grandfather of Osiris, Seth, Isis, Nephthys
  • Great-great-grandfather of Horus

Isis

  • Goddess of Magic/Fertility
  • “Aset”
  • Gifted with magical powers
  • Representation: A woman wearing cow’s horns + solar disk on her head + ankh symbol in her hand
  • Symbol: tiet (Knot of Isis), throne, kite, scorpion,  sistrum
  • Sister of Osiris (also her husband), Nephthys and Seth
  • Daughter of Nut and Geb
  • Mother of Horus
  • Occasionally wears the double-crowns of the North and South with the feather of Ma’at
  • When portrayed as a woman, she wears a headdress but with a uraeus over her forehead

Anubis

  • Jackal – God of Mummification
  • “Yinepu, Anpu”
  • Assisted in the rites by which a dead man was sent to the underworld
  • Representation: A man with the head of a jackal holding the divine sceptre carried by kings and gods; as simply a black jackal or as a dog accompanying Isis
  • Symbol: jackal, ox-hide hanging from a pole, embalming equipment, flail, flags
  • Son of Nephthys
  • Son of Osiris
  • He monitored the Scales of Truth to protect the dead from deception and eternal death.

Osiris

  • God of the Underworld
  • “Asar, Wesir, Ausar, Unnefer”
  • Representation: a bearded, mummified human with green skin and wearing the atef crown. His hands emerge from the mummy wrappings and hold the flail and crook.
  • Symbol: crook and flail, djed, White and Atef Crowns, bull, mummified form, throne, Bennu (phoenix)
  • First child of Nut and Geb
  • Brother of SethNephthys, and Isis.
  • Father of Horus and Anubis.
  • He was believed to be willing to admit all people to the Duat, the gentle, fertile land in which the righteous dead lived
  • His realm was said to lie beneath Nun, in the northern heavens or in the west.

Horus

  • Falcon – God of the Sun
  • “Hor, Heru, Her”
  • Representation: a hawk, or a man with a hawk’s head crowned with the crown of all Egypt
  • Symbols: hawk/falcon, bull, Double Crown, Winged Disk, Udjat, Sphinx, weapons, iron, blacksmiths
  • Son of Isis
  • Son of Osiris
  • Horus was among the most important gods of Egypt, particularly because the Pharaoh was supposed to be his earthly embodiment
  • The Eye of Horus, healed by Thoth, was an amulet, or magic charm
  • Kings of Egypt associated themselves with Horus.

Hathor

  • Goddess of Music, Love, Happiness, Dance
  • “Het-hert”
  • Representation: cow, as a woman with the head of a cow; horns of cow and sun disk
  • Symbols:  cow, lioness, falcon, cobra, hippopotamus, sistrum, musical instruments, drums, pregnant women, mirrors, cosmetics
  • Looks after all women
  • Mother of Horus
  • Queen of Egypt identified with her
  • also known as Sekhmet, the Eye of Ra, the destructive Sun Goddess

Thoth

  • God of Wisdom, Moon, Time, Writing
  • “Djehuty, Tahuti, Tehuti”
  • Representation: ibis-headed human, an ibis, or a baboon (or dog-headed ape)
  • Symbols: ibis, baboon, writing palette and reed pens
  • He was said to be self-created in the beginning along with his consort, the goddess Ma’at (truth)
  • He invented hieroglyphs, the picture writing of Ancient Egypt
  • measurer of the earth and the counter of the stars, the keeper and recorder of all knowledge
  • was the vizier and official scribe of the afterworld.
  • He was associated with the moon; as the sun vanished, Thoth tried to dispel the darkness with his light.

These are the 7 major Gods in Egyptian Mythology. Of course, these are just the tip of the ice-bergs. Here are some of the less commonly heard ones along with a little more trivia =D

Embalming Process/Journey to Osiris

From left to right:

  • Imset (Liver)
  • Ha’py (Lungs)
  • Duamutef (Stomach)
  • Qebehsenuf (Intestines)

*The heart was left inside the body to be weighed against the feather of truth by the God Anubis*

*If the heart was deemed unworthy, it would be thrown to the monster Ammit “Devourer of the dead” and the journey through the underworld stops there for the owners.

It is not the end for those who pass for the journey still continues and it is dangerous and difficult. Magic symbols painted on the mummy’s case were designed for protection. (FYI, animals were mummified too, including cats and crocodiles)

Household/Daily Protection

– Taweret

  • protected pregnant woman
  • part hippopotamus, part woman, legs of a lion

– Bes Amulet

  • Protection from household dangers

– Fish Amulet

  • Protection against watery accidents such as drowning or being taken by crocodiles

Well, that’s all folks. Hope you had a good read =) These are simply the summary. For more information, you can visit the sites below or get the book ^^

Ja ne ~

Cited Sites/Book:

http://www.touregypt.net/godsofegypt/
http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/600496/totemism
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/12223b.htm
http://www.themystica.com/mystica/articles/a/ancestor_worship.html
http://www.egyptianmyths.net/
http://gwydir.demon.co.uk/jo/egypt/index.htm
Time Life Discoveries Library Ancient Egypt

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Doubt

Games. Aren’t we all addicted to it? Be it computer games, or role-playing games or real life games etc. We could spend hours playing games which we enjoy, sometimes getting so engrossed in it that we forget about everything which goes on around us. We can become so in-tune with the game that we sometimes wish that the game was real and that the line between fantasy and reality is blurred.

Now, what if that wish comes true? What if we really do become characters in the game and the game becomes real. Alive. So much so that we really can lose our lives playing it. What happens then?

Doubt (Douto -ダウト-), also known as Rabbit Doubt, is a horror shounen manga illustrated by Yoshiki Tonogai. The series is revolves around a cell-phone game which has the same name as the title, Rabbit Doubt. It is a fairly simple game: in a group of ‘rabbits’, one player is randomly chosen to be the ‘wolf’ and infiltrate the group. Every round, the ‘rabbits’ are supposed to guess who the ‘wolf’ or liar is. Guess wrongly and one ‘rabbit’ gets ‘eaten’. The game ends once the ‘wolf’ is found or all the ‘rabbits’ die.

*spoiler alert*

In the story, 4 players of the game and one non-player decided to meet up and relax together. Their names are Yū Aikawa, Eiji Hoshi, Haruka Akechi, Rei Hazama and Mitsuki Hōyama (she’s the non-player). Before anyone knew what was going on, all 5 of them awoke in a psychiatric hospital. Well, okay fine, 4 woke up cause one was dead. Rei was  hanging from the ceiling and her cell-phone confirmed the horrific truth that they are all now playing a real live version of Doubt. Just like the cell-phone version, to survive, they must find the real wolf and kill it.

All of them have bar-codes imprinted on their bodies and these are used as keys to help unlock doors, helping them find the exit/wolf. Of course, as the story goes on, the ‘rabbits’ all begin to die one-by-one (more details on how they died, read the manga =]). This came to a halt when Yu discovered that Mitsuki was the one who had been killing everyone.

Mitsuki explained that she wanted to punish all liars to achieve revenge for her father’s comatose state, as her father was conned. Even though Yu first lied to her in the beginning of the game, that he had no barcode imprinted on him, she did not want to kill him. Others, however, had already been killed for their lies. Hajime tells the truth about himself and hands a scalpel to Yu once Mitsuki left and they attempted to escape from her.

However, a slight accident happened; while chasing them, Mitsuki fell and had her neck cut with the scalpel.  As Yu tried opening the door with Mitsuki’s barcode, Rei unexpectedly steps in and reveals that all along she had been the real wolf. Her reason was revenge was because the media did not believe in her power of hypnosis, thinking it was nothing more than a scam. This led to her parents, who supported her all these while, to die in a suicide. She then came to a decision: Manipulate Mitsuki, though the reasons behind why Mitsuki was chosen, it was not revealed. There were times when things did not go as plan though, as Mitsuki’s love for Yu was powerful enough to overwrite the hypnosis.

Releasing the surviving players and calling the police, Mitsuki and not Rei was thus accused as the murderer. Rei herself being present at the scene was not proven.

Towards the end of the story, Yu receives a call from Rei, who tricks him into saying a phrase that causes Mistuki to awaken in her ‘wolf’ mode. The ending scene is then shown Mitsuki approaching Yu with a knife.

*~spoiler~*

Well, for starters, I was supremely hooked onto the manga once I started. Believe me, I nearly did not want to go for dinner even though I was starving. I was fairly intrigue by the twists in the plot. I mean, okay I must have sucked at thinking at that time but I sure as hell did not expect the ending, who the killer was and who the actual mastermind was.

Of course, I have to admit, a little part of me was nagging about its unhappiness of depicting wolves as the bad guy (Little Red Riding Hood/The Little Boy Who Cried Wolf). Not that this is the first time I have seen it nor do I have anything against it. Wolves are, after all, natural predators, always ready to prey on the innocent and good. The cycle of nature. I just hope that people do not misunderstand the true nature of wolves, which can be really beautiful, if we bother to read up and understand them.

Revenge is sweet. Well, at least in this story it appears so. In reality, some people can vary towards extremes in terms of their opinions towards Revenge. They can be really against it or totally agree with it. I personally am sitting on the fence, although slightly towards the ‘against it’ side. After all, revenge, hatred, it is like staring at yourself in the mirror. Who’s real and who’s the reflection? Who is the hater and who is the hated? It is easy to carry on the cycle of revenge, but it is not easy to break the cycle. There can be many reasons which result in one taking revenge, but usually it’s from a childish reason which somehow gets blown up to something really huge (yeah, making a mountain out of a molehill)

Well, that’s it for today’s post ~ Hope ya’ enjoy it! ^^

Ja ne ~

CosFest IX Let’s Make Friends! @ Downtown East ~

YAY! FINALLY FOUND TIME TO BLOG AGAIN! Sorry my dear blog I had been quite busy mugging for my Legal System and Contracts test. Weekends…well all right I admit I ‘cheated’ on you. Was watching Disney movies and sleeping the day away – *snap* YEOWCH! WOLFY!! Sorry that’s my signal to stop blabbering and get on with the topic.

Well, for usual Sundays, I would most likely be stoning away. Not today though. Today, I’m making my way down to D’Marquee, Downtown East. Why? Hey! It’s COSFEST IX!!! *grins*

Anyway, I made my way down with my friend, Jit. No, I ain’t an otaku but I just love to bask in the atmosphere: People’s determination in not letting what society thinks about them sway ’em, unafraid to be who they are and to carry out what they believe in.

This was the programme for CosFest 2010:

World Cosplay Summit Singapore Finals
Anime Games World Music Competition
Asia Cosplay Meet Championships
Anime Karaoke Competition
Team Cosplay Competition
Doujinshi Booths
Graffiti Wall

COSPLAY COMPETITIONS
ASIA COSPLAY MEET

The Asia Cosplay meet was a gathering of Asia’s best cosplayers coming together to compete for the title of Number One Asia Cosplayer. Produced by the Singapore Cosplay Club,  Singaporean cosplayers were invited to take part. Countries involved included Singapore, Malaysia, Philipines and Korea. The preliminaries will be held in each country locally and the top 3 winners will come together to compete for the Championship in…SINGAPORE!! WOOHOO!! Fans of cosplayers you MUST run down for the championships! Don’t care eating or dating! JUST DO IT! Nike (*cough cough* too much projects must have made me dead lame)

So what is cosplay (“costume-play”)? The term itself originated in Japan, though the activity is increasing in popularity around the world. It refers to the “practice of dressing up in costume to resemble anime, manga, sci-fi/fantasy, and video game characters.”

Cosplayers are commonly found in Harajuku and Akihabara districts in Tokyo. Containing many cosplay cafes, these are dedicated/catered to devoted anime and cosplay fans. The waitresses at such cafes dress as anime or game characters, with maid costumes being particularly popular.

As far as I know, the single largest event which features cosplaying is probably the semiannual doujinshi market, Comiket. Held during Summer and Winter in Japan, it attracts over thousands of manga fans. Cosplayers would all then gather at the roof of the exhibition center.

(Try don-ning some of the costumes in Singapore and i can gurantee you MIGHT have heat stroke)

(Back to the event)

I realised that there were quite a bit of anime characters being used for cosplaying which I have never seen before…felt a little strange. Even though I was out of touch from anime for just one or two years, it felt like more than that. I could still recognise some of them, like Sebastian from Kuroshitsuji, one of the Siesta sisters and Beatrice from Umineko, Naruto + Bleach characters, Grown-up Ash and May (*chuckles* inside joke inside joke XD), Pikachu and a Mew from Pokemon. Oh! Not forgetting a few Vocaloids: Hatsune Miku (normal, wedding dress etc., Rin/Len Kagamine… The rest I was completely *blank*.

In between watching cosplaying characters, I saw some stores inside the dome selling really swell stuff! We have original drawings of various characters, action-figures (well all right, I do not really like action-figures), postcards, keychains, doujins…and of course we have performances (which I did not catch cause the volume of the speakers made my ears bleed)

Saw Dollfies which were really really pretty. Oh, sorry. For the benefit those who do not know what Dollfies are, they’re basically a brand of vinyl/resin, ball-jointed dolls created by a Japanese company Volks in the year 1997. Owners of Dollfies do ‘face-up’ or ‘make-up’ on their dolls as dollfies usually come blank, having their face unpainted. Well, the store which sold dollfies, they did an excellent job making-up the dollfies, I’d say. Rosy cheeks, pinkish lips..I couldn’t stop looking at this particular Dollfie which had a dressing style that I absolutely adored! Goth-Loli XD Oh a trivia from my friend, Jit: Dollfies cannot be exposed to flash or sunlight, otherwise their pale porcelain skin would turn yellow. ><”

Hmmm…here are some of the photos I managed to snap during the CosFest:

Well, apart from walking around and running into random people (literally random!!! I saw my JC Lecturer who transferred out to NUS High and my ex-schoolmate, Shi Rong), I made some new friends too! (No pun intended with the theme of Let’s Make Friends) After that, I stoned with my friend Jit at an outdoor area and we both took a small nap in the cool afternoon breeze. (Oh, it did rain for awhile in the afternoon)

Well…that’s about it for the event =) Sorry photos will be uploaded later. XD Ja~ne!!! *runs off*

明天會更好(約25年前的MV)

Oh my gosh! I saw a friend of mine post a remixed and modern version of this song yesterday on Facebook. I was wondering if it was the song which I heard a long time ago in Secondary School.

After it hit the chorus, the answer ‘Yes’ was slammed right into my face. I do not have any personal grudge against modern Chinese (or even other language) songs but I feel that the voices as well as lyrics are much better back then. That includes the sound/tone/purity of the voice and meaning of the lyrics.

This song brings back so much memories ~ (oh don’t laugh but I literally cried after the first time I listened to it)

Lyrics:

轻轻敲醒沉睡的心灵
慢慢张开你的眼睛
看看忙碌的世界
是否依然孤独的转个不停
春风不解风情
吹动少年的心
让昨日脸上的泪痕
随记忆风干了

抬头寻找天空的翅膀
候鸟出现它的影迹
带来远处的饥荒
无情的战火依然存在的消息
玉山白雪飘零
燃烧少年的心
使真情溶化成音符
倾诉遥远的祝福

唱出你的热情
伸出你的双手
让我拥抱着你的梦
让我拥有你真心的面孔
让我们的笑容
充满着青春的骄傲
为明天献出虔诚的祈祷

谁能不顾自己的家园
抛开记忆中的童年
谁能忍心看那昨日的忧愁
带走我们的笑容
青春不解红尘
胭脂沾染了灰
让久违不见的泪水
滋润了你的面容

唱出你的热情
伸出你的双手
让我拥抱着你的梦
让我拥有你真心的面孔
让我们的笑容
充满着青春的骄傲
为明天献出虔诚的祈祷

轻轻敲醒沉睡的心灵
慢慢张开你的眼睛
看看忙碌的世界
是否依然孤独的转个不停
日出唤醒清晨
大地光彩重生
让和风拂出的音响
谱成生命的乐章

唱出你的热情
伸出你的双手
让我拥抱着你的梦
让我拥有你真心的面孔
让我们的笑容
充满着青春的骄傲
让我们期待着明天会更好

So what comes to your mind when you listen to this song? Well, of course the first thought that enters my head is ‘inspiration’. “明天会更好” translates to “Tomorrow will be better”. It is a really moving song that tugs at one’s heart strings. My past memories gradually surfaced to the front of my mind. I miss those good old golden days.

Hope y’all enjoyed this song ^^ *walks away carrying a picture of her childhood days*