In this entry, we explore the historical connections between Asherah and Egyptian Kemetic spirituality, highlighting the possibility of Asherah being a representation of the Egyptian Neteru Deity Aushet (Isis).
We will delve into the origins of Asherah, the influence of Canaanite culture, and the transformation of Judaism into a patriarchal religion, diverging from the egalitarian principles brought about by the appreciation of the Divine Feminine in Kemetic spirituality.
The Divine Feminine in Kemetic Spirituality
To comprehend the potential connection between Asherah the wife of God Yahweh, and Kemetic spirituality, we must first explore the religious framework of Ancient Kemet (Egypt).
In the pantheon of Egyptian Neteru Deities, a remarkable feature was the existence of male and female deities paired together, symbolizing the concept of balance and harmony or Maat.
The Egyptians/Kemites believed in the complementary nature of these pairs, representing the inseparable connection between masculine and feminine forces in the universe.
Aushar (Osiris) and Aushet (Isis) were one such divine pair, embodying the principles of fertility, creation, and resurrection.
Aushet, was depicted in a Hieroglyph portraying her as the mother of the Egyptian Throne and for this reason, Aushet (Isis) was recognised as a life-giver and nurturer within the Egyptian pantheon.
Canaan’s Connection To Kemet
It is important to understand the historical context surrounding the Canaanites, as their cultural interactions with ancient Egypt provide valuable insights into the possible origins of Asherah as the wife of God Yahweh.
Canaan, a region encompassing modern-day Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, and Jordan, shared a long history of political and cultural interactions with Egypt.
From the reign of Nesut Bity (Pharaoh )Thutmose III (15th century BCE) onwards, Canaan was under Egyptian rule, leading to a blending of cultures and beliefs.
During this period, the Canaanites adopted various elements of Egyptian culture, including religious practices.
It is plausible to assume that the Canaanites, being exposed to the concept of paired deities from the Egyptians incorporating these ideas into their own religious worldview.
Asherah as a Canaanite Goddess with Egyptian Origins
Asherah was initially an integral part of Canaanite religious beliefs.
She was regarded as the consort of El, the chief deity of the Canaanite pantheon, and was associated with fertility, motherhood, and the nurturing aspects of nature. Given the historical connection between Canaan and Egypt, it is conceivable that Asherah’s existence as a divine female figure reflects the influence of Egyptian Kemetic spirituality on Canaanite religious practices.
Drawing a parallel between Asherah and Aushet (Isis), we find striking similarities.
Both Deities embody femininity, fertility, and protective qualities. The narratives surrounding these figures involve their roles as mothers and life-givers.
Thus the inclusion of Asherah as a divine partner to Yahweh could be seen as an attempt to integrate and preserve elements of Canaanite beliefs within early Judaism.
Over time, Judaism underwent significant transformations, and the influence of Canaanite culture waned.
Over time, Judaism began emphasizing the sole worship of Yahweh.
This shift resulted in the suppression of Asherah and the removal of the Kemetic Divine Feminine concept from Judaism.
The existence of Asherah, the wife of Yahweh, in Judaism can ultimately be traced back to the historical connections between Canaanite culture and Ancient Kemet (Egypt).
Canaan, once under Egyptian rule, absorbed elements of Egyptian Kemetic spirituality, which included the reverence of male and female deities in pairs.
Asherah, likely representing Aushet (Isis), was a Canaanite Deity with origins in Kemet.
The inclusion of Asherah as a divine figure in Judaism highlights the cultural exchange and religious syncretism that occurred in the ancient world. The Canaanites, influenced by Egyptian beliefs, integrated Asherah into their Pantheon as the consort of El, and this tradition carried over into early Judaism.
However, over time as Judaism underwent a transformation which relegated Asherah to a diminished role, Judaism became a Patriarchal religion, diverging significantly from the egalitarian principles of Kemetic spirituality, where male and female were regarded as inseparable, equal and necessary parts of creation.