Black Spirituality Religion : Hotep From The ‘Nu Ntr,’ Which Means ‘Peace’...


Well-Known Member
Feb 3, 2001
New York
By Dr. Kuba O. Assegai

Over the last couple of months I have received numerous requests asking for the meaning of the term “hotep.” It is ironic, because last week I was asked by some of my students to explain the term, after one student heard the word used in a debate on the Tom Pope Radio Program (part of the Powernomics Broadcasting Network). This is roughly the response that I gave:

First allow me to paraphrase my deceased brother, Dr. Khalid Abdul Muhammad:

“Words by themselves, without their historical, environmental and human understanding, have no relevance whatsoever.”

Every word comes from a thought, and every word leads to some form of human action. Therefore, words spoken out of the context of our cosmology engenders inappropriate thoughts and actions.

Dr. Jacob Carruthers, drawing on the Medu Neter, the sacred language of our ancestors, refers to the “Sep Tepy” (the time of creation). In concrete, the “Sep Tepy” symbolizes “Re,” the Sun God, arising from “Nun” (the watery matter). References to this can be found in the Papyrus of Ani; The Book of Coming Forth By Day; in Wallis Budge's Book of the Dead, and in Maulana Karenga’s Husia.

In light of this what does it explain about our ancestors? One can clearly argue that they were a spiritual people, not a religious people. The difference between these “asilis” (ideological core underlying a culture) can be witnessed by the way Africans celebrate the presence of “The All,” as so vividly described in the Kybalion's Principles of Correspondence.

As children growing up in an African community one can recall saying “Good morning” or “Good evening,” and so forth. In any traditional village in Africa, those who are younger than yourself must greet you with honor. The symbolism of this behavior is not the “deconstruction” term “Good manners,” but the holistic celebration of “Sacred Being.” No “one day” Christian, Muslim or Jew. "The All" does not exist outside of our being; there is no white man with a bushy beard living behind the clouds. "The All" embodies us as one, in a tapestry of oneness, and the spirit that holds us together is symbolic in the way(s) we relate to each other.

In the historical period of Ausar, Isis and Horu (the Kemetic deity), the Metu Neter (sacred text) was All-Omnipotent. Even the link between the concrete and the abstract was a fundamental aspect of “Good living.” The guiding thoughts and principles were symbolized by “Maat,” whereas the actions were manifested by Maat's inseparable “other half” (i.e., husband) “Tehuti.” As Dr. Oba T'Shaka’s book, Return to the African Mother Principle of Male and Female Equality explained, “Africans...have the responsibility to transform ‘western science’ – constructed on a Kemetic, Chinese or Islamic foundation – into a cosmic, sacred science that recognizes the inseparable nature of the spiritual and the material.” (p.157)

Since we are on western society, may I crave your indulgence in establishing a few facts: The Guyanese African, Dr. George James, in his classic, Stolen Legacy, proves that Greek philosophy was stolen from Kemetic philosophy. Through careful documentation Dr. James shows that the leading philosophers of Greece: Pythagoras, Thales, Anaxinmander, Anaximenes, Democratus, Socrates, Plato, Xenophanes, Parmenides, Zeno, Malisus, Empedoles and Anaxagoras, were all trained in the Kemetic Mystery System.

In support of this gross act of intellectual property theft by western scholarship, Prof. Theophile Obenga’s Ancient Egypt and Black Africa proved conclusively that the word “philosophy” did not originate from the Greek language. When the two words are broken down, “philo” means “love,” and “sophon” means “wisdom” or “science.” Also according to Prof. Obenga, the word “logos,” which means “reason,” means to compartmentalize ideas without reforming them into a whole (herein lies the cultural problem in teaching African children using a Eurocentric curriculum paradigm. Western teachers use a particularistic approach – by compartmentalizing knowledge into subjects, whereas Africans use a holistic approach, whereby to learn one area is to learn all areas of knowledge).

In a seminar at the Association for the Study of Classical African Civilizations (ASCAC) Conference in 1998 at CCNY, Prof. Obenga linguistically showed that the etymological term “philosophia,” derived from the Kemetic derivative word, “sb3wtT, seba,” to be found in the Pyramid Text, far outdating the very existence of a “Greece.” In fact, Isocrates (436-338 BC) designated Kemet as the cradle of medicine for the well being of the body, and philosophy for the well being of the soul (Imhotep being the Father).

For the soul the sage (i.e., priest) revealed the practice of philosophy (tais de psychais philosophias askesim katedeoksan), which can, at the same time, set some rules and look for the nature of things. Therefore, at the end of each day the male (Tehuti), whose role was to protect the matrilineal structure of the society, would go before Maat to be cleansed. With their left hand holding their “crutches,” and their right hand raised with their palm opened, they recite the 42 Confessions of Maat. Ten of these confessions are used today as part of the Moses story (Dr. Josef ben Jochanon, The Black Man and His Family of The Nile).

In western jurisprudence and psychology, the Principles of Maat is used as a fundamental aspect of their epistemology (i.e., theory of knowledge). Those who went before Maat reciting the 42 Confessions pledged that they have not violated any of these sacred virtues, because the penalty for so doing is to “be unmanned.” Should this happen the culprit would be unable to father children or have any responsibility for children the concrete manifestation of life. In many Christian churches today this sacred concept is ridiculed, with “woman testifying to a male white deity.” It is quite humorous, to say the least, when women who do not possess testicles pledge to be castrated for doing wrong!

Before the pledge to Maat is made, Tehuti greets her with the Nu Ntr (sacred words) “Shem Hotep” (“I come in peace”), and Maat would reply “hotep.” At the end of the Confession Tehuti would depart with “hotep” (peace!).

Wa Maat

Hotep & Sankofa

Dr. Kuba O. Assegai


Well-Known Member
May 19, 2004
Akhay Atha Antuk < Aqil >

If I May Add My Two Cents
Akhay Atha Antuk = How Are You ( M )
Akhay Atha Antut = How Are You ( F )
Utcha Ila Antut = Salution To You ( F )
Istanjaay Ila Antuk = Salution To You ( M )
Hotep Ala Antuk = Peace Be Unto You ( M )
Nefer Mensa - Meht = Good Afternoon
Nefer Mensher = Good Evening
Nefer Ushat = Good Night
( The Ancient Egiptian Mystery Language )

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