Shu is one of the first two dieties created by Atum. He is brother to Tefnut and embodies the concepts of air, wind and sunshine. He is depicted as holding Nut apart from her consort Geb.

Shu is usually depicted as a man with a plume on his head. On occasion, He is depicted as a lion standing alongside His sister Tefnut. Headrests made in his image were thought to provide a forever circulating oxygen supply. 

In the Pyramid Texts, the pharaoh would use the body of Shu to ascend into the heavens, while the lakes of Shu would purify the pharaoh. During the Old Kingdom, the first mention of Shu as a diety of sunshine was recorded. Shu would bring Re and the pharaoh into life each day. Akhenaten emphasised on this many years later by describing Shu as living in the sun's disc.

Shu was known to provide good winds for sailors, as well as to help lift the spirits of the deceased from this existance and into the afterlife. Shu appears in magical spells as protecting the internal organs.