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Kemetic University Clergy of Ancient Egypt Studies Course Assignment – Handling the Heart and Its Related Behaviors
Part 1 – Select three out of the following Precepts of Maat that best A-embody and facilitate the wisdom and recognition of one’s own divine essence and B-that of others so as to be able to approach oneself and others with kindness and non-violence.
Precept 25 – I have not allowed myself to be consumed with the fire of irritation, anger, fury and rage
Precept 33 – I have not harmed anyone by causing offense, or through deceit, causing calamities, damage, injury, destruction or mischief
Precept 37 – I have not spoken with arrogance, conceit, puffed-up self-importance, air of superiority or with condescending attitude.
Part 2 – After making your selections state A-Why you made the selections you made and B-how you think such a interaction would be for a person that is firmly grounded in the three precepts when they communicate and or interact with themselves and with others.
A- Precepts 25, 33, and 37 were selected because they refer to three different modes of interaction or communication, thoughts (25), behaviors (33) and speech (37) that If enacted as stated reflect Maat (righteous action) and reflect one refraining from thoughts, actions and words that are an-Maat (unrighteous action) and have the potential for harmful psychological or physical violence.
B- In terms of how an interaction would be for someone grounded in the three precepts, they are self-explanatory, however, each may be enacted using Maat philosophical teachings of righteous action.
For example, being able to interact having not allowed oneself to be consumed by the fire of irritation, anger fury and rage (Precept 25) is reflective of Maat philosophical teachings of righteous action including the concept of “aa-mu ab” (cool down, cleanse the heart). Using “aa-mu-ab” to illustrate Precept 25 would involve allowing oneself to cool down or cleanse the heart/thoughts in lieu of succumbing to and being consumed by the thoughts that lead to irritation, anger, fury or rage. The term consumed is particularly operative in this precept. Consumed connotes levels of intensity such as being overcome with said emotions to the point that the person engages in self-harm or lashing out behaviors. Being consumed also connotes a range from lower to higher levels of emotional intensity but each emotion can have its own quality. Therefore, being consumed with the fire of irritation is different from being consumed with the fire of rage, however, in and of itself being consumed with the fire of irritation could involve negative internal dialogue or speaking negatively about someone to someone else, while being consumed with the fire of rage could involve violently harming oneself (e.g., cutting one’s self) or physically attacking another person with a weapon (e.g., shooting with a gun) at its extreme. So a person might avert engaging in an irritating or rage-filled interaction by using hekau (words of power) or hesi (chanting) mentally. This form of thinking when practiced literally helps to cleanse the heart and mind. The irritating thoughts would be replaced by the cleansing power of the hekau or hesi leading to “mench-ab”, a more positive disposition through using the hekau to create the right thinking and feeling.
As another example, not harming anyone by causing offense, or through deceit, causing calamities, damage, injury, destruction or mischief (Precept 33) would involve the philosophical concept of “mat”, cultivating right feeling, goodness, integrity, uprightness. Here a person would engage in self-examination and question if the interaction they are engaging in reflects “aba ab” egoistic desires, “Am I about to do this because of an ego [physical or material] based desire”. The person might also ask themselves, “Am I acting in a way that if observed by others would be seen as demonstrating “mat” right feeling, goodness, uprightness and integrity.” To practice this a person might engage in regularly taking time for momentary reflection before doing something and ask oneself, what do I intend to come out of this interaction for myself or others. One can acknowledge that he or she does not control the outcome, but what is important is if he or she going into the interaction based the conscious and possibly subconscious intention of “aba ab” egoistic desires or “mat” cultivating right feeling, goodness integrity and uprightness.
Lastly, Precept 37, not speaking with arrogance, conceit, puffed-up self-importance, air of superiority or with a condescending attitude, would involve “maakheru”, being true of speech meaning speaking based upon truth. In this context truth may pertain to knowing the truth of the essence of oneself and others is the Divine. Therefore, a person grounded in this precept would see themselves and others as Divine and would have no need for speaking with arrogance or being condescending because he or she would see no difference in him/herself, God and other people. On a practical level a person grounded in Precept 37 would intend for their words to promote deescalation versus escalation of any given interaction and might ask then selfs before speaking, “Is what I am about to say or write (e.g., in an email) intended and more likely to escalate or deescalate the situation. As alluded to in the last paragraph regarding actions, in this case regarding speech, one cannot control how a person will respond back to what is said, but before speaking a grounded individual would be self-reflective and consider their intentions and if they are “maakheru”.
Posted 2-2-19; reposted 2-3-19
Htp Asar Maat
Reference: Ashby, M. A. (2017). Egyptian Book of the Dead hieroglyph translations using the trilinear method Vol 2. Miami, FL: Cruzian Mystic Books