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24 August 2008 @ 02:56 pm
Does anyone else see a problem in this?  
Uh huh... So, today while collecting material for my personal research notebook (at times, I love Google), I stumble across a Wikipedia article about Ms. Tamara L. Siuda herself. And this is something that struck me as odd:

Involvement in Vodou

Siuda has been a mambo in Haitian Vodou since July 2001, when she first initiated as a mambo asogwe (the highest rank of Haitian Vodou initiation) as part of La Sosyete Racine Sans Bout in Jacmel, Haiti. She left her first house in 2003 and was re-initiated as a mambo asogwe in another Vodou lineage, the Sosyete Belle Fleur Guinea of Petionville and Port-au-Prince, Haiti, in January 2006. Siuda's own Vodou house in the lineage of Belle Fleur Guinea is called La Sosyete Fòs Fè Yo Wè, and permits her to have students in the Haitian Vodou tradition completely separately from her role as Nisut of Kemetic Orthodoxy. As a mambo she is known as "Mambo T" or by her public initiatory name of Mambo Chita Tann.[9]

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tamara_Siuda

Now, I understand how well Kemeticism and Vodou (Voodoo, however you want to spell it) work together. They actually compliment each other greatly. The issue I'm seeing is this, copied from the KO's official site:

In order to maintain Ma'at and respect to all religious choices, including our own, we do not ask members to renounce any previous or current religious beliefs, ordinations or titles gained in other faiths, although Shemsu undergo a rite of initiation dedicating them specifically to the service of a particular god or goddess and generally make a total commitment to Netjer setting aside behind previous non-Kemetic Orthodox work as part of that vow. (Remetj members do not take such a vow and as such are not bound by the oaths of Shemsuhood). Persons who after probation, or at any time during their sojourn with the faith conclude that Kemetic Orthodoxy is not their spiritual path are supplied with guidance on where to achieve that as best as can be supplied; we do not believe our faith to be the one and only path to spiritual success and Kemetic Orthodoxy may not be for everyone.

Source: http://www.kemet.org/kemexp4.html

That first line is much like one of those cases of "Now don't get me wrong, I really like (whoever), but (insert reason why not to like them)." By the interpretation of their own words, they literally said, "We won't ask you to renounce any previous or current religious beliefs, but if you become one of us, we make you do just that."

Now... On to the point...

Why is it, that if the Shemsu of the KO are expected to devote themselves specifically to the Kemetic Orthodox faith that their leader, Ms. Tamara L. Siuda, can go and get any official whatnot that she wants to, to even have students in that other faith seperately from the KO?

Really, now. All I'm seeing is a person who is trying really, really hard to become an idol. And sadly, most people are letting her do just that...

 
 
Current Mood: irateirate
 
 
 
Zebi: Nekhbetzebi on September 3rd, 2008 05:51 pm (UTC)
As a KO Shemsu, I feel that I should say something. I have been a Shemsu for almost three years. At no time was I ever told that if I took the Shemsu vows, then I had to renounce my previous spiritual connections or practices. At present, I am involved with an ADF grove in my area, although I consider my activities with them to be secondary to my Kemetic faith. I don't know how old that particular page is, but it isn't what is being taught in the Beginners' classes, and I think it should be reviewed and worded to reflect current teaching.
Sab Saitihmtanpu on September 19th, 2008 11:14 pm (UTC)
The last update to the page was on August 6th, 2007, which matches identically to its current incarnation, so I'm guessing it hasn't been updated at all since.

Of course, seeing as the same paragraph from June 8th, 2000, reads as follows:

In order to maintain Ma'at and respect to all religious choices, including our own, from the decision to become Shemsu, a member sets aside previous religious beliefs as well as ordinations or religious titles gained in other faiths, in a total dedication to Netjer. Persons who after probation, or at any time during their sojourn with the temple as Remetj, conclude that this faith is not their spiritual path are supplied with guidance on where to achieve that as best as can be supplied; we do not believe our faith to be the one and only path to spiritual success and Kemetic Orthodoxy may not be for everyone.

I'm still skeptical until the official site is made to reflect current teachings, as they have never, in fact, offered anything of their actual doctrine as public knowledge.
tut2k9: pic#71714412tut2k9 on September 22nd, 2008 08:22 pm (UTC)
The page pretty much spells it out, albeit in rather verbose terms. But an information page can say whatever it wants, the crux of the matter is what's done in practice. I for one have noticed an extreme lack of tolerance for other faiths from somebody I know in HoN (and yes, she is a Shemsu.) She likes to argue with my Christian fiance' about how Christianity is basically a cult 'ripoff of Kemetic religion', and when I showed her my personal Kemetic shrine, she totally dismissed it with an, "oh, henh." Some members may not act that way, but if there are enough who do to suggest a pattern, I think that should be cause for concern.
However, the point of the matter is elsewhere. I'm going to throw this out there: aren't Shemsu-Ankh members supposed to take a vow of exclusivity? What about the 'weshem-ib' ('testing of the heart') trial? If members are expected to maintain a certain level of exclusivity, why does this not apply from the top down? That's the main point of the thread.
I'm also curious to know what a /member/ of the group is doing posting on a site /protesting/ the group. I know some Yahoo forums that will throw out shills, and even warn as much in their home page description.

--Tut