Sebai Maa has been very thorough in his responses to the topic of finding an authentic religion, and then committing to it. We do not hold that Shetaut Neter, and as we teach it, is the only authentic religion. There are other authentic mystical traditions. And also there are many non-mystical traditions (only practice Myth &/or Ritual, but because they lack Mysticism, even these are not being properly practiced). I hesitate to say there are also non-authentic mystical traditions, because their very non-authenticity relegates them to being non-mystical, that is, they cannot take the practitioner all the way to attaining Spiritual Enlightenment.
Now, one can choose to find several authentic mystical religions… and practice “salad bar” spirituality with this, going to all and taking bits from each. Yet, even in this scenario, there will be seeming contradictions between the teaching of one tradition from another.
I said seeming, because if it is an authentic mystical religion, all the teachings should point to enlightenment, but the vehicles to get one there may have some differences in expression, and the aspirant who is already not completely understanding the teachings of one tradition due to normal spiritual immaturity, is now misunderstanding the teachings of multiple systems of authentic practice, and also, trying to remember the different teachings from the different traditions, the different chants from the different traditions, etc.
It can be draining, confusing an overwhelming for an aspirant who is not mature enough to go beyond the superficial expressions. For example, an authentic Indian Yoga teacher may emphasize that India had the world’s first mystical system, highest spiritual development, and a Neterian aspirant may be taken back or offended by it, or think the teacher is not authentic, because she/he should know KMT was first.
Keep in mind that Nehast does not make one know every bit of knowledge about every aspect of life. It makes one know THAT by knowing which all else is known…the SELF, BUT one’s practical world knowledge remains the same after enlightenment, as before and one can still learn new skills and intellectual knowledge after Enlightenment, by study.
Also, the aspirant may encounter other immature aspirants at the different groups, who may treat them poorly, because they themselves are at an impure level of spiritual evolution (very egoistic). Then this will lead the aspirant to question the authenticity of the religion…and the aspirant can develop dis-disillusionment, not with the world, but with mystical religion.
Then what happens is that now the aspirant is running from one teacher to another asking the teacher to clarify or shed light on something the other teacher said. Or the aspirant is gets more lost & confused when she/he asks different teachers the same question and get different answers….the answers don’t match up exactly. More confusion and distraction.
So, even jumping from authentic tradition to authentic tradition can be confusing….why an aspirant is recommended to find one authentic path that appeals to them, and follow it as their main path. There still can be “ancillary” authentic paths that one can participate in periodically, especially in a “supplemental” way, but only if one at a mature enough level to not be bothered by inconsequential worldly occurrences and have a deeper “mystical” insight into the superficial seemingly contradictory things that are said or done.
Having many spiritual traditions that one is partaking in, is like going to multiple colleges at one time, and taking a course on the same subject. The outcome should be the same, if the classes are “authentic”, but some teachers will present different materials at different times, and this may cause confusion with what you are learning in a different class.
But, the question is, why do that? Why go through all that trouble? Why not just take one class, once you have checked it out and decide it’s authentic? Wouldn’t this be less distracting, and allow you to more focus on your studies, and make headway instead of wasting time and energy running here and there? Sebai Maa used the example of digging the well in multiple places, superficially, versus finding a good spot, and focusing all your time and energies there, and digging deep to find the wellspring of Nehast.
Now, Sebai Maa also pointed out the deficiency of our virtual temple, in that aspirants are scattered across the country, and the world. Thus, what we mostly have is a virtual Khnumt Nefer, but as human beings, we don’t have virtual parents…that would not work. So, online Khnumt Nefer is good, but human contact and communication with like minds are also an essential part of spiritual evolution. There is no authentic spiritual teacher that would settle for online Khnumt Nefer over the possibility of doing live in person Khnumt Nefer. As Sebai Maa explained, we are working with what is possible.
However, the soul/psycho-spiritual personality still has its need for Good Association, Khnumt Nefer.
Some aspirants may no longer be attending dull or very agitated events. Since there is a paucity of Neterian aspirants, one is limited in how one goes about meeting the needs of the personality for congregating in a group for worship for fellowship.
Some aspirants may find another authentic tradition of another culture, and go there for Khnumt Nefer periodically, to fulfill this spiritual practice.
But if this is not available either, what is the aspirant to do, when the soul desires fellowship? The person will be pushed by ariu to find the next best thing…something that may not be authentic mysticism, but is most in alignment with the mystical tradition, and also with their aryu, such as Native American, Voodoo or Yoruba (Afr Traditional Religion), etc.
Others who live with their families, spouses, children, may not experience or experience as much, the feeling of aloneness of an aspirant who does not have access to Khnumt nefer, and who lives alone, may experience, as they may be teaching their children the tradition, or at the very least, they have to engage them in daily life, and interact with them in a loving way, so the family and children are enough to meet their emotional needs of fellowship.
So, it is important to recognize that just because you may choose to go to events and programs of other cultural groups, and part take in their kind of fellowship,this does not have to mean that you are practicing their tradition.
It can simply mean that the aspirant is meeting her/his need for fellowship, which is lacking in one’s own personal practice of one’s tradition.
Recognize its likely going to continue to happen, and perhaps do some research, to see if their are any other authentic mystical religious groups in one’s area…that would be more in line with one’s practice of Shetaut Neter, perhaps take an Indian Yoga exercise class, or attend a lecture by Buddhist or Indian Yoga teacher…of authentic traditions.
When I was young, after we moved to this country, my mom changed from being Catholic to becoming a Methodist. Why? She met them and they were nice and it was close to the house and convenient, and she could have her need to worship met, and they gave her support as well…a good community of people to interact with positively. I went with her to the church….primarily because I enjoyed being with her, and being with the other folks, and did not pay much attention to the sermon…I enjoyed singing the songs also. I just enjoyed the fellowship…nothing more (well, the sense of God too!)
What aspirants, finding themselves in similar circumstances of not having the opportunity for personal Shedy, do is either leave the tradition to become part of a non-mystical or another mystical tradition where their emotional needs for fellowship and support are met,
start a Neterian study group. This is how Per Heru was founded. Uab Setna moved to Atlanta, and not wanted to engage in any other traditions (I believe he had already done this earlier in life in searching for an authentic teaching and teacher), he was persistent with Sebai maa about starting a study group. He has shared previously how it grew from a study group to the Per Heru.
So starting a study group in one’s area is certainly a way to meet the need of in person fellowship with others of similar interests and pursuits.
Pursuing Sebai Maas suggestion of interactive Khnumt Nefer can be tried, as we have discussed it previously…however, with Shems Arit being on the West Cost, it may be challenging for all to pick a time that is conducive for all, with the current blog talk programs and personal schedules. But if you all would like to do this…even if it is once a month…as Sebai Maa indicated, we would support it.