Neter

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A section of a pre-dynastic (3500BC) green slate showing an Egyptian warrior holding a hatchet or axe " Neter symbol.png ", which became the hieroglyph for "god" in early dynastic period (2800BC).

In religio-mythology, neter (TR:7) (LH:13) (TL:20), symbol " Neter symbol.png ", meaning axe or hatchet, symbolic of the divine military power of a tribe, city, or state, is the ancient Egyptian hieroglyph for "god", where three neter symbols " Neter symbol.pngNeter symbol.pngNeter symbol.png " means "gods", and four or more neter symbols refers to a "paut" or god family, e.g. Ogdoad ( Neter symbol.pngNeter symbol.pngNeter symbol.pngNeter symbol.pngNeter symbol.pngNeter symbol.pngNeter symbol.pngNeter symbol.png an eight god family) or Ennead ( Neter symbol.pngNeter symbol.pngNeter symbol.pngNeter symbol.pngNeter symbol.pngNeter symbol.pngNeter symbol.pngNeter symbol.pngNeter symbol.png a nine god family). Individual "nome gods" are referred to as "neteru" (Gadalla, 2001).[1]

Overview

In 2360BC, in the Pyramid Texts of king Unas (c.2400-2360), we find the following sentence carved into the pyramid of his burial tomb, which reads may Unas "rise as a soul like a living god":

Neter (Unas, 2360BC).png

The neter symbol, shown twice above, translating as "god", generally refers to the "power" of person or war power of a state our country. In plain speak, the axe, of another person (of another country), may very well strike out the solar "life force" (ankh) given to you by the gods.

This is similar to how semi-modern countries evoke the name a "god" prior to going to war, or as national justification to go to war, e.g. how George Bush in Jun 2003 said "god told me to invade Iraq", in private meetings, following 9/11.[2] In this scenario, it was the god of Jesus (aka god the father) vs the god of Muhammad (aka Allah). The "supreme god", at the time of Unas, comparatively, was Atum-Ra.[3]

Derived terms

The is some conjecture that the term "nature" derives from neter, presumably in the sense of what is natural is what is determined by the "power" or powers of the universe.

Quotes

The following are quotes:

“The common name for ‘god’ is ‘neterNeter symbol.png or Neter 2.jpg, with the plural ‘neteru’ Neter symbol.pngNeter symbol.pngNeter symbol.png, or Neter 3.jpg, or Neter 4f.jpg, or Neter 5.jpg, but we find that male gods are sometimes called ‘hawks’ Neter 6.jpg, even when the female gods are called ‘netert’ Neter 7.jpg.”
Wallis Budge (1904), The Gods of the Egyptians, Volume One (pg. 41) [4]

End matter

References

  1. Gadalla, Moustafa. (2001). Egyptian Cosmology: the Animated Universe (pg. 143). Tehuti.
  2. Cornwell, Rupert. (2005). “Bush: God Told me to Invade Iraq: President revealed reasons for war in private meeting”, Common Dreams, Oct 7.
  3. Supreme god timeline – Hmolpedia 2020.
  4. Budge, Wallis. (1904). The Gods of the Egyptians, Volume One (pg. 41). Dover.

External links

  • Neter – Hmolpedia 2020.
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