42 principles

Ma'at was the ancient Egyptian concept of harmony, morality and truth. Ma’at was also personified as a Goddess. The Egyptian book of the dead describes 42 principles of Ma’at, which include; not polluting myself, not shutting my ears to the words of truth, not judging with undue haste, not behaving with violence, not causing disruption of peace ,and not cursing anyone in thought, word or deed.

Ma’at

So whenever I get exposed to a new religious system, I like to look at the rules for being a good human and see if they align with my current morality, the philosophy that I have already taken the time to suss out. Kemetic Ma’at is new to me and I’d love for you all to help me learn a little bit more about it, to help me interpret these Laws and show me how they are practiced in modernity. I’ve taken a quick look, and as a chaos magick hedge witch, kinda looser folk witchery, and more nihilistic Buddhist, I don’t think they work for me. But maybe I can still learn from them and fold in some better ideas and hear Thoth’s voice stronger through better knowledge of Kemeticism.

I’ll post my own little interpretation of a few each day, and you can add on your own views on it and how you practice that principle.

The 42 Divine Principles of Maat in Budge’s native English follows:

  1. I have not committed sin.
  2. I have not committed robbery with violence.
  3. I have not stolen.
  4. I have not slain men or women.
  5. I have not stolen food.
  6. I have not swindled offerings.
  7. I have not stolen from God/Goddess.
  8. I have not told lies.
  9. I have not carried away food.
  10. I have not cursed.
  11. I have not closed my ears to truth.
  12. I have not committed adultery.
  13. I have not made anyone cry.
  14. I have not felt sorrow without reason.
  15. I have not assaulted anyone.
  16. I am not deceitful.
  17. I have not stolen anyone’s land.
  18. I have not been an eavesdropper.
  19. I have not falsely accused anyone.
  20. I have not been angry without reason.
  21. I have not seduced anyone’s wife.
  22. I have not polluted myself.
  23. I have not terrorized anyone.
  24. I have not disobeyed the Law.
  25. I have not been exclusively angry.
  26. I have not cursed God/Goddess.
  27. I have not behaved with violence.
  28. I have not caused disruption of peace.
  29. I have not acted hastily or without thought.
  30. I have not overstepped my boundaries of concern.
  31. I have not exaggerated my words when speaking.
  32. I have not worked evil.
  33. I have not used evil thoughts, words or deeds.
  34. I have not polluted the water.
  35. I have not spoken angrily or arrogantly.
  36. I have not cursed anyone in thought, word or deeds.
  37. I have not placed myself on a pedestal.
  38. I have not stolen what belongs to God/Goddess.
  39. I have not stolen from or disrespected the deceased.
  40. I have not taken food from a child.
  41. I have not acted with insolence.
  42. I have not destroyed property belonging to God/Goddess

Got this list from maatlaws.blogspot.com. Let me know if there is a better translated list around that might help in my endeavor. Starting off with a good translation would be a good start.

Day 42: I will not betray my Venerated Ancestors.

lesson: a life lived in Ma'at honors the living and the dead.  

~~~~~~~~~~~.:.~~~~~~~~~~~~~

we live because our parents lived, they live because of our grandparents…all the way back to our First Mother in Africa.  we carry our Ancestors with us from the moment we are born until we rejoin them at death.  

every mistake, triumph, challenge and blessing they faced helps us to thrive here and now.  our High Ancestors–those who educated and civilized the planet–left us a wealth of knowledge, including dynamic forms of spirituality that have moved with and sustained us through the ages.  

our Ancestors are waiting for us to exceed their expectations.  honor them by being the best person you can be; devote yourself to your unique, divine purpose.

read through the Principles and consider where you are in your process: what needs healing, where you’re already strong, what you haven’t considered before.  journal your own reflections for insight. 

remember, as above, so below: as we elevate ourselves, we elevate those who came before us.  when we demean ourselves and each other, we greatly diminish our capability to access Divine wisdom. 

as you strive for goodness and harmony in your life, may the voice of your Ancestors continually and consistently lead you to Ma'at: truth, love, reciprocity, and understanding.

M Khut N Mer,
{In Light & Love} 

.:.~.:. Priestess Nuit .:.~.:.


about this series: in preparation for Wep Renput, or the Opening of the [New] Year, it’s traditional for a Per Ankh [Kemetic spiritual house] to undertake a period of reflection and purification to welcome the year’s blessings. part of my meditations will involve writing about each of the 42 Principles of Ma’at {aka the “42 Negative Confessions” or “42 Oracles”}.