Summary: Bast is one of the oldest known deities.
Kemetic names: Bast, Ba en Aset, Bastet, Pakhet, Pasch, Ubastet, Ubasti
Greek names: Ailuros, Artemis, Kore Artemis
The hieroglyphs for Basts name are the bas-jar and the feminine ending t , meaning She of the bas-jar. Bas-jars were heavy perfume jars, typically filled with expensive perfumes.
(NOTE: In addition to native variations by locality or over time, there are often several possible transliterations into the Roman alphabet used for English.)
Although Bast originated in ancient Egypt, this goddess was worshipped in a lot of other cultures, including the Greek, Roman (where she was the second most popular goddess among women, after Isis), Germanic, and others. The information on this web page combines variations of Bast from many different cultures, not just the original. For a presentation that sticks to the ancient Egyptian original, try www.per-bast.org.
Ta-Mera is one of several native names for the Two Lands of the Nile.
In ancient artwork, Bast is typically shown as a beautiful girl with the head of a cat. She is commonly shown with black, white, yellow, or glowing skin. Sometimes She is shown as a light-skinned European girl with long blonde hair and bright blue eyes. She is often shown as fully cat.
Bastet is the name of Bast when She is in fully cat form.
According to E.A. Wallis Budge, Pasch is recorded in extremely ancient documents as being an older version of Her name. Some modern worshippers believe we get the modern English word passion from Pasch.
Bast is an extremely ancient Goddess, long predating writing. She had many, sometimes contradictory, roles. NB: not all of the following was believed simultaneously. Beliefs about Bast evolved over thousands of years and the views under the Old Kingdom were significantly different than the Greco-Roman views, not to mention a wide variety of modern variations.
Herodotus, Histories, Book II, Chapter 60
When the people are on their way to Bubastis, they go by river, a great number in every boat, men and women together. Some of the women make a noise with rattles, others play flutes all the way, while the rest of the women, and the men, sing and clap their hands. As they travel by river to Bubastis, whenever they come near any other town they bring their boat near the bank; then some of the women do as I have said, while some shout mockery of the women of the town; others dance, and others stand up and lift their skirts. They do this whenever they come alongside any riverside town. But when they have reached Bubastis, they make a festival with great sacrifices, and more wine is drunk at this feast than in the whole year besides. It is customary for men and women (but not children) to assemble there to the number of seven hundred thousand, as the people of the place say.
Bast is the Goddess of cats. In early Kemetic history she started as a Lioness Goddess like Sekhmet.
Bast is the Goddess of the rising sun. When ra became popular Bast became the Eye of Ra (and a daughter of Ra).
Bast is the Goddess of enlightenment.
Bast is the Goddess of truth. This was a very early association.
Bast is the Goddess of lesbians. This is connected to an ancient belief that lesbians were associated with truth.
Bast is the Goddess of civilization, bounty, and plenty. This is because of an association with Aset (Isis) and became an especially popular view in the Roman Emprie.
Bast is the Goddess of the household and protector of the home. This view developed in later Egyptian and Greek periods.
Bast is the enlightened Maiden of the Triple Goddess. This started with the Greeks.
Bast is the Goddess of Goddess of creation.
Bast is the Goddess of sex, fertility, and birth. This was a Greek view.
Bast is the Goddess of physical pleasures. This was a Greek view.
Bast is the Goddess of bountiful positive energy.
Bast is the Goddess of music, dance, and the arts. The priestesses of Bast were known for their erotic dance ritual, as part of the introduction of Bes worship and belly dancing into New Kingdom culture..
Bast is the Goddess of the moon and possessor of the Utchat, the Eye of Her twin brother Heru Sa Aset [Horus]. This belief came from the Greeks and their association of Bast with Artemis.
Bast is the Goddess of hemp and marijuana. This is a controversial association.
Bast was sometimes connected with Het Heret (Hathor), Skhmet, and Tefnut (Tefnwt).
Daughter of Mwt (also Mut) and Amun (also Amon or Amen).; daughter of Asar (Osiris) and Aset (Isis) and twin sister of Heru Sa Aset (Horus); and daughter of Ra (also Re) and sister of Djehuti (Thoth), Sekhmet, Seshat, Het Heret (Hathor), and Maat.
Twin sister of Sekhmet and creators/destroyers of time and space. See Cosmic orgasm. Bast was a goddess of Lower Egypt and Sekhmet was a goddess of Upper Egypt and joining the two goddesses mirrors the Pharaoh. The connection between Sekhmet and Het Heret (Hathor) is a stronger connection than the connection between Sekhmet and Bast.
In the Roman Empire Bast was viewed as the sexual partner of every God and Goddess.
Wife of Ptah and mother of Maahes; wife of Ra (also Re); and wife of Heru (Horus).
Mother of Nefertem. Many ancient Egyptian goddesses were mother of Nefertem.
Associated by the Greeks with Artemis, that is, the Greeks believed that Bast and Artemis were the same Goddess.
Considered by the Greeks to be the same Goddess as the Roman Diana.
candle colors: red, green, white
Picture courtesy of JBL Statues
this reproduction sold by Sacred Source
JBL Statues is now Sacred Source
Bast Her holy city Bubastis possessed Egypts greatest temple. She is depicted enthroned as the cat-headed incarnation of Isis, or alternately as the seated Sacred Cat. Related to Neith, the Night Goddess, Bast symbolized the moon in its function of making a woman fruitful, with swelling womb. She was also the Egyptian goddess of pleasure, music, dancing and joy. picture and text © 1999 JBL Statues (now called Sacred Source)
the Chapter of the Deification of the Members
from the Pyramid of Pepi I
The breast of this Meri-Ra is the breast of Bast; he cometh forth therefore and ascendeth into heaven.
> Rubric If this Chapter be known by the deceased upon earth, he shall become like unto Thoth, and he shall be adored by those who live. He shall not fall headlong at the moment of the intensity of the royal flame of the goddess Bast, and the Great Prince shall make him to advance happily.
herbs associated with Bast:
religious title certificate
Get a beautiful certificate declaring that you are a priestess, priest, high priestess, high priest, hem, hemet, kher, sesh per ankh, scribe, witch, or shaman of Bast. This is a real religious certificate meeting government standards for conducting marriages and other ceremonies.