Last week, Devo posted a guide to Wep Ronpet, the Kemetic New Year. Back in May, Brooke wrote up a how-to on calculating the date for Wep Ronpet for one’s city or town. Together, these posts made me curious about when the date would fall for my area here in Virginia.
“But Kaye,” you might be asking. “Why do you have to calculate the date for a holiday like the New Year? Isn’t it fixed year-to-year?” The answer to that, dear reader, lies in the way the Ancient Egyptians developed their calendars. (Yes, there’s more than one!)
The Kemetic calendar is based on the day of Sopdet rises before the sun. From that, the rest of the calendar is calculated, from when the months, to occur to the dates of the seasons, to the holidays themselves. This is similar to, in our modern age, when Easter occurs from year to year (the first Sunday after the first full moon after the Vernal Equinox). So if you want to find out exactly when Wep Ronpet occurs in your area, it takes a little bit of math. Luckily, as Brooke mentions in her calendar post, there’s a very handy website that will do this for you. All you have to do is compare the results between Sirius’s rise and the Sun’s rise. Luckily, to make it even easier, Wep Ronpet usually occurs in late July, early August, so you don’t have to compare the times for every day of the year.
As I take my first steps into this Kemetic desert, I have asked myself a few questions: what appeals to me about Kemeticism; what about Kemeticism falls in line with my own pre-established beliefs; how long will I focus on Kemeticism before deciding whether or not it is for me?
It is this last question that prompted me to finally sit down and calculate the Kemetic New Year for my town. I wanted to give myself a general guideline for when I practiced Kemeticism as a “trial run” to better understand it and how it might work in my life. By having an official start date, I give myself time prepare and do more studying before I start practicing anything. But why calculate it? Why not just pick a general date? Many Kemetics today do this, picking a date and celebrating the same date every year. This didn’t sit well with me, in part because I had no idea what day I would pick. Plus, I wanted to put this special bit of effort into the holiday, a sort of push for myself to get committed to this Kemetic trial run.
But now, the date is set: August 7, 2013.
This year, I want to celebrate the Epagomenal Days – the five days “out of the year” that occur just before the New Year, the birthdays of certain Kemetic gods – as a lead in to the New Year, to better prepare myself for the official start date. A rehearsal of sorts, though no less important. And, for that, I have preparations to do.
There are many things I’d like to do before I finally commit to this year of practice and study, passing through a full seasonal cycle of Kemeticism before deciding whether or not this path is for me, in some capacity. I am nervous but excited to see what the coming year will bring.
Wep Ronpet 2013 To Do List
- Purchase new palm wax 7-day candles.
- Salt bedroom floor near window (this is the area where I have my current shrine and altar) for purification. Vacuum after four hours.
Pack away 7-day candles on windowsill.
- Cleanse new altar items.
- Cleanse bookcase.
- Day before New Year: purchase flowers for shrine.
- Set Kemetic altar.
This list will be amended to as time passes and I remember new things to do or cancel out things that no longer need doing (or cannot be done).