Talk:Aten

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Style of Leader[edit]

On this page, "Style_(manner_of_address)#In_religion", there is an entry for,

*The Most Reverend (abbreviation The Most Rev., oral address Father) — The Leader of "The People of the Aten"

Does this have anything to do with the Aten page? There is no reference to an extant People or their Leader.--Oxonian2006 03:43, 7 January 2007 (UTC)

Aton and Athena[edit]

Is there a relation (etymological or else) between god Aton and goddess Athena?

--IonnKorr 20:31, 30 October 2005 (UTC) I do not believe so. mikey 04:53, 4 September 2006 (UTC)

Grammar and sources[edit]

This article makes some pretty wild claims, in bad English. This needs to be fixed. --OneTopJob6 15:30, 26 July 2006 (UTC)

Organizing[edit]

I've done some preliminary reorganizing of the article, separating the Moses theory into its own section and for the time being removing the Adonis and Adonai links since neither of these articles reference the Aten in any way, and the relationship is only specific to this theory, not general knowledge of Aten.

I might add that the Moses entry is in definite need of better citations and writing. It uses unnecessary contractions and has no sources whatsoever. My guess is the author of the previous post who liked the Moses theory, decided to include it by simply throwing in a quickly written summary of it, which is negligible. I would call on someone better acquainted with the authors and concepts of the Moses books than myself to edit this section.

The titles of the Aten are also pitifully organized and written and especially need citations for those specific translations, as more than one author gives an alternate English meaning of the inscriptions.

The Aten's spherical likeness being more readily apparent in personal views of the stelae is a subjective opinion only, and I would advocate removing it if others agree. The Hugh Nibley reference is more preferable, although perhaps a citation would be helpful too. AtenRa 19:08, 26 August 2006 (UTC)


Criticism[edit]

The general statement that "traditional beliefs don't 'gel' with history", though common believed, is far from being a neutral statement. The entire paragraph in which it is contained is written in non-encyclopaedic language and the citation of another opinion as the major support of the statement rather than a proven fact (about Solomon, for instance, which automatically writes off the entire Kebra Nagast) about three Biblical characters throws the whole thing into question.

200.108.27.63 13:24, 18 December 2006 (UTC)

Well the site by which I get much of my Kemetic information totally eradicates all notions put forth in this totally opinionated article. The link I am providing here is the total opposite of what you have here. This needs to be reseached more to reach more accuracy[1]. Antoine L. Mason


This page displays Akhenatens worship of Aton as being monotheistic of monastic, while this is far from certain; it should be noted that many scientists consider his form of worshipping as belonging to a henotheistic tradition.

Inaccurate, Incomplete[edit]

The entire article is inacurate and incomplete. Simple to refute by anyone with a book of pictures from Ancient Egypt. For instance, the Aten is a solar disc utilized by nearly every diety as represented in hieroglypics. Not merely Ra or the the cult of Aten. Pictures from Egyptian artifacts with Atens on top of many different deities are very easy to come by and can be provided. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Akutra (talkcontribs) 22:17, 10 April 2011 (UTC)

The Visible Disk of the Moon[edit]

If aten is the visible disk of the sun, and an aspect of Ra, is there an Egyptian word for the visible disk of the moon, perhaps an aspect of Khonsu (or is Khonsu an aspect of Thoth)?

If there is such a word, I feel it should be linked-to in the aten article, as the moon is somewhat a conjugate of the sun. — Preceding unsigned comment added by AltiusBimm (talkcontribs) 07:03, 6 December 2011 (UTC)

There probably was no moon god really equivalent to the Aten. Perhaps the closest god to what you're asking about is Iah, but he was represented as a human with the moon hieroglyph on his head rather than as an object or hieroglyph alone. I did add to the article the only slight connection that I know of between the Aten and the moon—namely, that the moon disk was sometimes called "the silver Aten" by analogy with the sun disk. A. Parrot (talk) 19:13, 6 December 2011 (UTC)

Dubious- First appearance of the Aten[edit]

The statement that the Aten first appears in the 12th Dynasty should be clarified and given a proper citation - aten with the meaning 'disc' appears at least as early as the Vth Dynasty, and is also used to describe the seat of the sun god in certain passages from the Coffin Texts (e.g. CT V:335). CharlieRCD (talk) 12:18, 9 June 2012 (UTC)

"Aten" or "the Aten"?[edit]

The article's lead section refers to this god as simply "Aten," but the rest of the article refers to it as "the Aten." We need consistency. Which version is preferred? Will(B) 23:42, 14 September 2014 (UTC)

It's hard to say which is more common. I always think of it as "the Aten", probably reflecting the non-scholarly books I first read about ancient Egypt. There really is a lot of inconsistency, though. There's reason to say "the", because the sun disk is so much more impersonal than the other gods, and because the term (jtn) was not, at least originally, a name. Then again, it is a god, so some people write "Aten" without "the". Surveying the sources I have that seem most relevant (reference works, overviews of Egyptian religion or theology, and histories that cover all of ancient Egyptian history or focus on the Amarna period specifically), I come up with this list.
  • The Search for God in Ancient Egypt (2001), by Jan Assmann, uses both forms without consistency.
  • Religion and Magic in Ancient Egypt (2002) by Rosalie David uses "the".
  • Amarna Sunset (2009), by Aidan Dodson, uses "the".
  • The Routledge Dictionary of Egyptian Gods and Goddesses, Second Edition (2005), by George Hart, uses no "the".
  • Conceptions of God in Ancient Egypt (1982), by Erik Hornung, uses both forms.
  • The revised edition of Temples, Tombs & Hieroglyphs (2007), by Barbara Mertz, uses both forms.
  • Akhenaten: History, Fantasy and Ancient Egypt (2000), by Dominic Montserrat, uses both forms.
  • The Cult of Ra: Sun Worship in Ancient Egypt (2001), by Stephen Quirke, which has a long chapter on Akhenaten's religious changes as an outgrowth of traditional Ra-worship, refers to "the sun as Aten" once, but otherwise it talks about "the sun disk".
  • Akhenaten, the Heretic King (1984), by Donald B. Redford, uses "sun disk" and only uses the term "Aten" when first discussing it.
  • The relevant entry in The Oxford Encyclopedia of Ancient Egypt (2001), by Hermann A. Schlögl, uses both forms.
  • The British Museum Dictionary of Ancient Egypt (1995), by Ian Shaw and Paul Nicholson, uses both forms.
  • Religion and Ritual in Ancient Egypt (2011), by Emily Teeter, uses "the".
  • Theological Principles of Egyptian Religion (1989), by Vincent Arieh Tobin, uses "the".
  • The chapter on the Amarna Period in The Oxford History of Ancient Egypt, by Jacobus Van Dijk, uses "the".
  • The Complete Gods and Goddesses of Ancient Egypt (2003) by Richard H. Wilkinson uses both forms.
  • The Rise and Fall of Ancient Egypt (2010), by Toby Wilkinson, uses both forms.
So the sources themselves aren't consistent, but there does seem to be a tilt in favor of "the". Incidentally, authors seem more inclined to omit "the" in quotations of Egyptian texts, for whatever reason. A. Parrot (talk) 02:26, 15 September 2014 (UTC)

Etymology[edit]

Given that the etymology and even the vocalisation of jtn are (apparently) unknown, an old idea is that it is a borrowing from Canaanite ʼadōn "lord", as in Adonai and Adonis. This idea was usually tied to speculation that the Egyptians acquired monotheism from early Canaanites/Hebrews. Of course, it is not currently thought that the Hebrews would even have developped a kind of monotheism already this early, and even the possibility of henotheism is uncertain for a period this early. But you can see how intriguing the possibility to somehow tie in biblical stories with established Ancient Egyptian history was and still is, and where all the speculation about Moses comes from. --Florian Blaschke (talk) 10:12, 30 October 2014 (UTC)

Interesting. Do you have a source that discusses those old ideas? I'm also interested in the early usage of the word jtn because of what it might say about the name of Ra. The word could obviously mean "sun", but some Egyptologists have implied that that was not its original meaning, vaguely implying that jtn might have been the original word for the sun. Do you know anything about that? A. Parrot (talk) 19:14, 30 October 2014 (UTC)