She is hidden now.
At least here on the west coast of the US, the beautiful Star of Isis (Sopdet in Egyptian, Sothis in Greek, Sirius in Latin) cannot now be seen in the night sky. She won’t be visible until later in August. When She first reappears in your area depends on your latitude; the further south you are, the earlier She is visible. For me, Sirius will be above the horizon for about a minute before the light of the sun obscures the starlight on August 13-14. However, I probably won’t be able to see it (there are significant trees on my horizon) until some few days after that, when Sirius rises earlier and the sun rises later. (NOTE: It was actually quite a few days later that I could really see Her…not until about August 23.)
But now, at the end of June, Iset Sopdet, Isis the Star Goddess remains hidden.
For the ancient Egyptian, the time before the rising of Sopdet was the end of the year. Then, when Sopdet was observed rising before the Sun God Re in the dawn sky, the New Year arrived and the renewing Inundation, the Nile flood, would soon follow. Isis Sopdet was called The Fair Star of the Waters and its rising meant food for the people.
Few of us have an Inundation to await these days; not even Egyptians, for the river dams now control the waters. And perhaps our own calendrical New Year may hold more potency for us than a late summer New Year. So how can we honor Isis in the hot, dry months of summer?
Perhaps we can look at another ancient Egyptian event tied to the rising of Sopdet: the celebration of the birthdays of Osiris, Set, Horus, Isis, and Nephthys. The Deities were said to be born on the five days at the end of the year that were “outside of time.” So at this time, before the rising of Sopdet, we may consider Isis to be within the womb of Her Divine Mother Nuet.
While I have no declared priestesshood for Nuet, She draws me. A lot. In fact, almost anytime I do spiritual work with Her, I am overawed by Her Eternity, Her Depth, Her Beauty, and I want to lose myself in Her.
Nuet is the mother of Isis. She is also called the Mistress of All and the One Who bears the Gods and Goddesses. She is the Splendid and Mighty One in the House of Her Creation. She is the Great One in Heaven and the “indestructible stars” (that is, the circumpolar stars that are always visible) are said to be in Her. She embraces the deceased king and each of us “in Her name of Sarcophagus” and “in Her name of Tomb.” She is the Mistress of the Secret Duat (the Otherworld). She is the Glowing One (perhaps as the Milky Way) and in Her we are joined to our stars, Becoming divine. She is the one Who gives birth to us and Who welcomes us back into Her starry body at our deaths. She is Heaven and She is the Otherworld. She gives birth to the Sun God Re each day and receives him back into Her body, by swallowing, each night. She is the one Who is “Amid the Iset Temple in Dendera” for She is over Her daughter and Her daughter is in Her.
When Isis is in Her mother’s womb, She is also in the Otherworld for Nuet is the Lady of the Duat and Her body is both the Heavens and the Underworld. So now in the heat of the year, our Goddess is in the cool depths of Eternity. Perhaps this is the time for us, as Her devotees, to enter the Otherworld as well. It may even be a particularly safe time to do so for now we have the support of Isis Who awaits us there. If we have scary things to face in our own personal Underworlds, now is a more supportive time to do so. The light of dawn comes more quickly now and the sunlight of Isis the Radiant One is more readily available to us after we have faced those inner darknesses that we must face in order to grow.
This may also be a good time to explore our relationships with our mothers. A strong priestess of my acquaintance, who was serving as a Priestess of Nuet at a festival not long ago, told me an interesting thing about how she perceived the relationship between Nuet and Isis. It was her distinct impression that Nuet did not get along with Her daughter. Of course, in the human realm, this is far from an uncommon thing. Mothers and daughters (and mothers and sons, for that matter) can have issues. Now, with the light of summer and the help of the Goddesses available to us, might be a time to shed some light on those issues.
But even if we don’t have mom stresses, this can be a time to honor our mothers, both human and Divine—perhaps under a star-filled sky. Since my own mother has already been enfolded in the wings of Isis, I shall plan to honor my Divine Mother Nuet and Her Starry Daughter, Isis…on the next clear and starry night.