The sixth day of every Kemetic month marks the 6th Day Festival, which is a festival in honor of the blessed dead, also known as the Akhu. The blessed dead are those people who have lived here, have died, and passed judgment. They are sometimes called transfigured, which from my understanding is they are considered as something more than just a human. They have the ability to help those here in the Seen World, and influence events if called to. The gods love us and desire our happiness, but the Akhu understand what it is like to live our lives. They understand our feelings and they know the challenges of being human. A good practical relationship with one’s ancestors is important in the spiritual life.
During retreat this year, the Akhu made sure it was known to us that they are feeling neglected. My fellow priest Sobeq writes about this in her blog http://sobeq.wordpress.com/2011/08/08/akhu-and-the-sixth-day-festival/ . Why is it important to remember the Akhu? It is important because who we are today comes from them. Their desires and triumphs have affected who we are today, and even the fact that we are here today. Something we need to remember when we discuss the Akhu is that they are real people. They were not perfect. They had their failings. If we look at them as being very much like us, we understand who they are and how they are important in our lives right now.
Celebrating the 6th Day Festival can be something very simple or something on a grander scale. The Akhu are just happy with you remembering them and don’t require much else. Some things you can do for the Akhu are pouring cool water, speaking their names, telling someone a story about one of them, or visiting their grave sites. Today marks the beginning of a new ritual which I hope will be a monthly staple of the Kemetic Orthodox faith. While technically today is not the actual 6th day (the actual date was January 5) we will still celebrate as it is. I hope all of you can be there and if you can’t make it today, please make it next month.
Dua Akhu! Nekhtet!