Study Guide

Aten

  • Profile

    Aten's a bit of a loner— probably because he doesn't give a donkey's donut when it comes to any of the other Egyptian deities. He prefers to shine solo over them, chilling in the sky. After all, he's the sun itself, hanging out above everything. No, not the god of the sun, the actual gigantic disk of fire that illuminates all. Pharaoh Akhenaten and Queen Nefertiti are his BFFs--they worship him at their special capital at Amarna (a.k.a. Akhetaten) that they built just for him. Aten even has tiny little hands that extend down from the sun rays that he uses to give his worshipers itty-bitty hugs.

    Basic Information

    Name

    Aten

    Nickname

    Aten Outta Ten, Sunny D

    Sex

    Male

    Current city

    Amarna (Akhetaten), but you know, I shine in every city.

    Work & Education

    Occupation

    Sole god of Egypt (sun-pun intended) and patron of Akhenaten

    Education

    There's nothin' new under the sun. I'm just that bright.

    Beliefs

    Political views

    Pro-Akhenaten

    Family & Friends (& Enemies)

    Parents

    I can't remember who my folks are!

    Siblings

    None

    Children

    Akhenaten sometimes says he's the son of the sun. I don't remember fathering him, but whatever.

    Friends

    Akhenaten, Nefertiti, Amenhotep III, cold-blooded animals, people who like gettingtheir tan on.

    Enemies

    Tutankhamen, Ay, Horemheb (they destroyed my worship!); all the other Egyptian gods

    Relationships

    Relationship status

    I ride solo, yo.

    Interested in

    More worshipers!

    Favorites

    TV Shows

    3rd Rock from the Sun

    From Pharaohs to Facebook: Egypt Today
    What is this "Facebook"? A book of the face? I prefer scrolls of papyrus. But they still need to have my face in them.

    It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia

    Akhenaten and Nefertiti
    Most beautiful couple. Ever. Get out the way, Jay and Bey.

    Quotations

    "Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun, the moon, and the truth." – Buddha

    "He says: Thou appearest beautifully on the horizon of heaven,
    Thou living Aton, the beginning of life!
    When thou art risen on the eastern horizon,
    Thou hast filled every land with thy beauty." – Akhenaten, The Great Hymn to the Aten

    "It's really kind of cool to have solar panels on your roof."– Bill Gates

    "I don't get no respect!" – Rodney Dangerfield

    "If I had to choose a religion, the sun as the universal giver of life would be my god." – Napoleon Bonaparte

    "The time to repair the roof is when the sun is shining." – John F. Kennedy

    Books

    All the King's Men by Robert Penn Warren (All of Akhenaten's men worshipped me.)  
    The Shining by Stephen King (To be entirely honest, I didn't read past the title page. But hey, I liked where it was going!)
    Akhenaten: King of Egypt by Cyril Aldred
    The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway (Yes, I do. Why was there even a question? Some profound meteorological work you're doing over there, Ernie.)
    Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter by Seth Grahame-Smith (What happens when the sun's out of the picture? That's right, vampires. Hope you learn your lesson.)
    Our Town by Thornton Wilder (Amarna was our town - mine and Akhy's... Sigh.)
    The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy
    Troilus and Cressida by William Shakespeare
    A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess (SO. SCARY.)
    The Cay by Theodore Taylor
    A Raisin In The Sun by August Wilson

    Music

    Revolution by The Beatles (Akhy started a religious revolution when he made me deity-in-chief.)
    A Change is Gonna Come by Sam Cooke (Yes, it did! Go, Amarna, go.)
    Sun is Shining by Bob Marley
    Ray of Light by Madonna (My rays of light have hands at the end holding ankhs, usually.)
    I Will Survive by Gloria Gaynor (This was my motto after Akhenaten died.)
    House of the Rising Sun by The Animals
    You're Beautiful by James Blunt (What Akhenaten sang to Nefertiti, and what everyone sings to me.)
    Here Comes the Sun by The Beatles

    Movies

    Sunshine 
    Bet you can't guess why I'm a fan.

    Nefertiti, regina del Nilo
    What a glamorous '60s flick about my fave lady.

    Shine a Light

    Mysteries of Egypt
    There are so many. For example, how come pizza rolls are so tasty? I think that's in there.

    Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind Truly Jim Carrey at his finest.

    Independence Day

    Abelar: Tales of an Ancient Empire
    A bit over-dramatic, but fun.

    Little Miss Sunshine
    I don't know what this movie is. This girl isn't my daughter.

    Activities & Interests

    Likes

    Flamin' Hot Cheetos
    Kanye West
    Mario Sunshine
    Orange Juice
    Sundance Film Festival
    Community Gardening
    Being the Center of Attention
    Stunna Shades
    Miss July

    Interests

    Religious studies
    Heliology
    Hymnology
    Astronomy
    Optics
    Agriculture

    Groups
  • Spotter's Guide

    Sex: Male
    Age: Ageless
    Build: Round, but not fat. His curves are bold!
    Complexion: Yellow
    Hair Color: None
    Facial Hair: None
    Scars/marks/tattoos: None
    Jewelry and accessories: If he had a ring, you'd be kissin' it.
    Clothing: None. Way too hot.
    Armor: His red-hot beams
    Type of Weapon: His rays burn you to smithereens.

    Typical Companions:

    • Akhenaten
    • Nefertiti
    • Sunbathers
    • Rainbows
    • Californians

    Known Hangouts:

    • Death Valley
    • Amarna
    • The big blue sky
    • San Francisco 
    • My many temples
    • Jamba Juice
    • Six Flags 
    • The beach
    • Anywhere fun-lovin' dudes in Hawaiian shirts and coconut drinks with curly straws congregate
  • Sightings

    Jan 1, 1970

    The Story of Sinuhe

    I made my grand appearance in literature in the story of Sinuhe, which told of an ancient courtier who traveled to distant lands. Sinuhe describes his master, the king, as flitting up to heaven to unite with the sun-disk (a.k.a. Aten). They got disky with it!

    Jan 1, 1970 - Jan 1, 1970

    Two Hymns to the Sun God

    Two lil' bros, Suti and Hor, wrote about how much they loved me (and all the other sun gods) on a stele. What's a stele? It's like a big stone block people carve important things on and stick in the ground. Obviously, the best part of the stele is where my boys Suti and Hor get with the program and focus on me, calling me the "creator of all." Pretty nice, right? It makes two pretty big points: first, I get the credit I deserve for, you know, making everything live. It's also proves that people knew who I was before Akhenaten put me on the map.

    Dec 20, 2019 - Dec 20, 2019

    The Later Boundary Stele of Amenhotep IV Akhenaten

    Akhenaten outdid himself here. On this stone marking the borders of his capital, he called me all sorts of lovely names. He dubs me "Dad" and talks about all the nive chints he did for me. I was super stoked, because he did me the huge honor of naming his new capital "Akhetaten," or "Horizon of the Aten." Later, folks wound up calling it "Amarna."

    Dec 20, 2019 - Dec 20, 2019

    The Great Hymn to the Aten

    Akhy wrote me a really nice note, which he turned into a prayer. He mentions how I banish the darkness every day and calls me the only deity in the world. I rule over many nations–including Egypt–and am pretty awesome overall.

    Dec 20, 2019 - Dec 20, 2019

    The Tomb of Ay

    Ay, Akhy's advisor who later became pharaoh, praised me here, but dissed me elsewhere. He dropped me all these sweet lines: saying that I kiss the ground when I get up in the morning and shine. He didn't let Akhenaten go without a little lovin' just for him. In his tomb, Ay gave him all sorts of pet names.