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maat

 
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 27, 2005 5:23 pm    Post subject: maat Reply with quote

who is maat Wink
who is re(the sun god Very Happy
who are maats family Razz
please reply peeps
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2005 1:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maat (transliterated m'3t) is the goddess who personifies the ever-important concept that goes by the same ancient Egyptian word. She is usually easily distinguishable in depictions of deities by the prominent ostrich plume she wears as a crown; here's a good image of her. The four glyphs in this image above and to the left (your left, that is) of her forehead form a classic way of spelling her name in hieroglyphs; they end with a little determinative or idiogramic picture of her, squatting while holding the ankh symbol.

The concept of maat is one of the fundamentals of the ancient Egyptian society. It doesn't translate into any single English word but carries connotations of justice, order, righteousness, all that is correct and as it should be. It expresses how conservative the ancient Egyptians were. The crown of the goddess Maat, the ostrich feather, is a graphical expression of this concept all by itself. That's why you see it on the pan opposite the heart in the Chamber of Truth in Spell 125 of the Book of the Dead--the soul-heart of the individual is being weighed against the very concept of truth to see if that person had been righteous in life (although sometimes, instead of just the feather, you will see Maat herself squatting in the pan). In some Books of the Dead, in the same spell, you will see the Assessors of Osiris each holding a feather as the individual recites the Negative Confession; this they hold to help determine if he or she is truthful in the recitation.

Maat does not have many temples for herself but figures prominently in the decoration and reliefs in many temples throughout Egypt. For instance, she has a small temple near the Temple of Montu in the massive Karnak complex in Upper Egypt.

Re is one of the most important gods in the ancient Egyptian pantheon of deities. He is of course the sun god, but Re isn't so easy to pin down graphically. He possessed over 70 different forms by which he could manifest himself at any time, and two of the most prominent are Amun-Re and Re-Horakhty (seen in this image as the hawk-headed god seated on the throne at center, with the large sun disk on his head). Re's primary cult center was a place called Heliopolis (known as Iunu to the ancients), which now lies under the suburbs of Cairo, but he was worshiped throughout Egypt in many different temples and shrines.

As far as family goes, these two are a good example from which to draw your question because Re was regarded as the father of the goddess Maat. Look again at this image of Maat. Earlier I drew your attention to the spelling of her name in the column at far left, above and to the left of her forehead. Look below the little squatting idiogram of Maat and you will see a red sun disk, a duck, and a small half-circle (the bread loaf in hieroglyphs); this spells out s3t r', "daughter of Re." She probably became associated with Re to begin with because of the sun god's connection with kings from the earliest times. Pharaohs were considered the sons of Re, and they were also the maintainers and guardians of maat (order and justice), and so it figures that the goddess who personifies this concept should be the daughter of this great god Re.

Here's a brief description of Maat, and here's one for Re. Both these pages come from Tour Egypt, which is one of the best and most reliable sites out there for the study of ancient Egypt.

I hope this helps you, and please let us know if we can do anything else. Very Happy
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