Models of Authority

Every so often I come across someone referring to something I wrote – sometimes attached to me, sometimes broken loose and wandering free across the wild internet – and tagged with “of course, a priest would say that” or “this person is a priest” or some other thing.

Other times I encounter people taking some of my work as some sort of scriptural revealed text, a The Right Thing To Do, some sort of authoritarian declaration of correct practice.

These things make me want to ragequit and stop putting my research on the internet. They make me tired.

Whoever had created humanity had left in a major design flaw. It was its tendency to bend at the knees.

– Terry Pratchett, Feet of Clay

I am not a priest.

To the extent that I am training to be a priest, it is not Kemetic, and I am for damn sure not your priest.

I am a researcher. I am a scribe. I am a writer. I am – occasionally – a mystic. I have aspirations to being a rekhyt and a sau.

I am putting out ideas and information in the hopes that some people find it useful, while I work it out for my own usage and systematisation. Take what you find useful. Ignore what you don’t find useful.

Do I think I’m right in some abstract sense? No. That would be stupid. I don’t think it is possible to be right in some abstract sense. There is no perfect reconstruction, and no way of making one. Everything is adaptation from limited information, and tweaked to work for the people building it.

Do I think I’m making something that works? Well, that’s the goal. If it works for you too, use it. If it doesn’t, don’t. Your personal practice, your involvement with your gods, your responsibilities, those are certainly not my business. I neither desire nor value your ritual compliance. Your piety is a problem for you, your ancestors, and the Powers.

Put the shopping carts away or don’t.

And come up with a word for someone who says things other than “priest”, damnit.

(Nothing active is making me feel the need to say this right now, mind, it’s just something that’s been stewing for months.)


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