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Do you have your cat gifts ready?

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posted on Dec, 26 2017 @ 01:21 AM
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I thought I'd close out the old year here and begin the new year with a bit of fun and levity and a very ancient tradition - the tradition of giving images of cats (and possibly cats themselves, though we can't say) on New Year's day.

Wilkinson says


Amulets of cats and litters of kittens were popular New Year gifts, and the name of Bastet was often inscribed on small ceremonial `New Year flasks', probably to evoke the goddess as a bestower of fertility and because Bastet, like other lioness goddesses, was viewed as a protective deity able to counter the darker forces associated with the `Demon Days' at the end of the Egyptian year.

Wilkinson, Richard H. The complete gods and goddesses of ancient Egypt. Thames & Hudson, 2003.


However, that's not QUITE the whole story.

You see, Bastet and Sekhmet were originally very similar goddesses (Bastet originally was a lioness goddess or a lion-headed woman.) Sometime during the Middle Kingdom Bastet changes into the familiar cat form we know today and becomes the deity of fertility and households and a protector of humans... as well as a bringer of justice (called the "Eye of Re"). Sekhmet becomes the goddess of war - and a protector of humans, a healer whose priests became the first licensed doctors, and a bringer of justice ("Eye of Re.") Eventually Bastet becomes a goddess of Northern (Lower) Egypt and Sekhmet a goddess of Southern (Upper) Egypt.

How does this tie into the New Year? Well, the New Year occurs around the time of the Nile Flood... which could be early or late or be very high or far too low; situations that would destroy crops and prove deadly to the people. There was also a belief that the god Khonsu (god of the moon) would write the names of those destined to die just before the new year began. Consequently, there was a huge business in amulets that brought luck and averted death and warded off demons around the time of the New Year festival.

Bastet and Sekhmet were bringers of misfortune ... as well as being luck-bringers. They would stalk the land with a band of demons (usually seven in number) and bring disease and misfortune. In order to ward off the wrath of these two feline deities, amulets and gifts with cats on them were exchanged in at the New Year festivals.

The New Year festival was celebrated in July... but the five days right around December 20-25th were considered to be "unlucky" days (and remember, Egypt is near the equator, so the "dark days of winter"don't really apply.) They were days that were won from Re by Thoth so that Neith could give birth to the five gods: Osiris, Isis, Set, Nepthys, and Horus. There's two feasts of Sekhmet this week - one on the 28th of December and one on the first of January that relate to her going out as an Eye of Re.

So it's a good time to start handing out lucky kitties to everyone.

My daughter gave me a lovely coffee mug with a cat on it, so I'm sure to be around to annoy everyone for another year. Have you gotten your cat gifts yet?


You can find a calendar of ancient Egyptian festivals (with approximate corresponding dates) here

More on Sekhmet

More about Bastet

Glencairn Museum's page on Fabulous Felines
edit on 26-12-2017 by Byrd because: (no reason given)




posted on Dec, 26 2017 @ 01:38 AM
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a reply to: Byrd

What if I get a puppy, will I be cursed?



posted on Dec, 26 2017 @ 01:43 AM
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a reply to: Byrd
I gave my sister who loves Hello Kitty this...


We have 4 cats, 2 males and two females and I was thinking of buying this.



posted on Dec, 26 2017 @ 02:08 AM
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a reply to: Byrd

Oddly enough, I gave a friend a stray kitten I'd been taking care of. She, the cat, looks kinda like a black furred Abyssinian, cute as can be. It's purr is bigger than it is.

So, I did!!

Neat thread.



posted on Dec, 26 2017 @ 02:43 AM
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a reply to: Byrd

Don't forget to mention the story comes with a scandal



posted on Dec, 26 2017 @ 03:01 AM
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My roommate came home with a hitchhiker an hour ago, a cat..it must of jumped into the car when he was at his sisters for Christmas dinner. He got here and was going to unload his Christmas stuff and ..WTF, theres a cat in the car.
I guess the little fella will be staying the night in the roommates room, go back to point of origin in the morn and try and find the owner. I have a 14 lb kitty already, good natured cat but not sure he is into a visitor.
So strange.



posted on Dec, 26 2017 @ 03:35 AM
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I got the lil fella a scratch pad that fits on wall corners and a remote controlled rat,lol.



posted on Dec, 26 2017 @ 04:41 AM
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I got a new memory foam mattress,the cat liked it as much as me,long story short,kid made him a bed of memory foam,on a tall perch,he's in hog heaven



posted on Dec, 26 2017 @ 04:54 AM
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originally posted by: MaxTamesSiva
a reply to: Byrd
I gave my sister who loves Hello Kitty this...


We have 4 cats, 2 males and two females and I was thinking of buying this.




Great shirt!



posted on Dec, 26 2017 @ 05:05 AM
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a reply to: Byrd

Happy Catmass!!!




posted on Dec, 26 2017 @ 06:15 AM
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a reply to: Byrd

Hi Byrd,

I wonder if the myths about cats may be related for all they do for us? Linked in some way?

Honoring our heroes is important and cats deserve a place and our thanks for the quality of our lives. Lately our neighborhood has been over run with rattlesnakes due to the construction ongoing around us. Tygger, my half feral cat, in the last two years of this has taken it as some sort of calling.

There are no snakes on our street due to her diligence in taking out all the mice and rats that the construction has driven onto our street that attracts rattlesnakes for a food source. Tygger doesn't bring them inside, thank God, but instead beheads them on the front porch. Here's the weird part, she lays them in front of the St Francis statue on the porch, kinda creepy.

All the other streets are having problems with the snakes, dogs are bitten, kids are threatened, etc, not our street. The neighbors have seen her in action and now treat her very well and watch for her. We should all consider declaring a special day for all they do for us as they did way back when.

ETA: I gave her a toy mouse with a Santa Claus hat, she loves it!

STM
edit on 26-12-2017 by seentoomuch because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 26 2017 @ 06:28 AM
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I hate cats. Terrible pets. Why would you want a pet that despises you most of the time?
edit on 26-12-2017 by hombero because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 26 2017 @ 08:40 AM
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We once had to help get a boxful of kittens used to human company. Her indoors was worried everyone would start calling her the crazy cat lady:


edit on 26-12-2017 by stormcell because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 26 2017 @ 09:22 AM
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posted on Dec, 26 2017 @ 10:43 AM
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originally posted by: seagull
a reply to: Byrd

Oddly enough, I gave a friend a stray kitten I'd been taking care of. She, the cat, looks kinda like a black furred Abyssinian, cute as can be. It's purr is bigger than it is.

So, I did!!

Neat thread.


Awww! Bast will love you for that!



posted on Dec, 26 2017 @ 10:56 AM
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originally posted by: seentoomuch
a reply to: Byrd

Hi Byrd,

I wonder if the myths about cats may be related for all they do for us? Linked in some way?


It's hard to say, but some legends about cats (Maneki-neko, for insance) certainly are. And there's the interesting folk tale of a real person, Dick Whittington's cat, which (sad to say) is apocryphal.


Honoring our heroes is important and cats deserve a place and our thanks for the quality of our lives. Lately our neighborhood has been over run with rattlesnakes due to the construction ongoing around us. Tygger, my half feral cat, in the last two years of this has taken it as some sort of calling.

There are no snakes on our street due to her diligence in taking out all the mice and rats that the construction has driven onto our street that attracts rattlesnakes for a food source. Tygger doesn't bring them inside, thank God, but instead beheads them on the front porch. Here's the weird part, she lays them in front of the St Francis statue on the porch, kinda creepy.

All the other streets are having problems with the snakes, dogs are bitten, kids are threatened, etc, not our street. The neighbors have seen her in action and now treat her very well and watch for her. We should all consider declaring a special day for all they do for us as they did way back when.


What a neat (and funny) story!

My felines have all been indoor cats since two beloved ones died of feline leukemia. My own cat story is of my last cat - I had gone to a Siamese cat rescue to pick up an older kitty (since they so seldom get adopted.) I was walking around the place and a very fluffy gray and white cat with pale Siamese-ish markings kept following me... but I wanted a Siamese. She'd meow and chirp at me.

"How old is she?" I asked the keeper.

"Thirteen." That was too old... I was looking for a six year old.

I eventually found one and went back to the office to start the adoption. When I sat down in the chair, I heard a "meow"... the old gray cat had hopped up on the bookshelves outside the office door window to meow at me.

I sighed, gave in to fate, and adopted her instead. She came with the name, Lindsey Peabody, and she adored me. She talked to me (politely and softly) and followed me around and slept curled up next to me.

She died two years ago (almost six years after I got her)... became very ill while we were on vacation but struggled to stay alive until we got home... and died two days later. Wonderful cat.

My current kitty, Miss Lilly Lightpaws, is a plushy-pants black cat.



posted on Dec, 26 2017 @ 10:58 AM
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originally posted by: dashen


Oh man. Yes, that's the cat I need! I received a gazillion "Here's a merry Christmas gif and you must pass it along and send it back to me if you REALLY care about me!" messages. Hate those things.

Sic' em, kitty!



posted on Dec, 26 2017 @ 11:09 AM
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a reply to: Byrd

Oh what a delightful thread
Matter of fact i Do have some homemade Mexican style painted papier mache cats to give away on NY



posted on Dec, 26 2017 @ 11:31 AM
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originally posted by: Raxoxane
a reply to: Byrd

Oh what a delightful thread
Matter of fact i Do have some homemade Mexican style painted papier mache cats to give away on NY


Oh excellent!

Do you know any interesting cat legends?

Here's a funny little folk tale about the cat and the parrot

And a sweet one from India about a kitten who became a queen

Cats in folklore are ambiguous...sometimes good, sometimes bad, sometimes the butt of the joke. Just like us humans!



posted on Dec, 26 2017 @ 11:51 AM
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My daughter gave me a coffee cup with our cat WIFI's picture on it. Both her and Shoti are the queens of our house. We are their servants.

I have been told by the cats that we must learn to serve our masters to keep tranquility in the house.




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