A Guide to Religions, Religious Information and Help in Search for God

Beliefs of the Ancient Egyptians

The ancient Egyptians were a curious and interesting people. In some ways, they were quite advanced like a bunch of idiot savants. Their ability to mummify the deceased and build astounding pyramid tombs are a testament to this.

The beliefs of the ancient Egyptians are worth noting. Each person had two souls. One of these souls, called "ka", was the ethereal (or astral) equivalent of the corporeal (or physical) body. This soul continued after death as a shadow of the body (or ghost). The other soul, called "ba", was the external soul that accompanied the person though life and after death.

Tombs were built and filled with physical treasures or goods for the "ka" to continue its existence. Again, the "ka" is simply the ethereal body that continues to exists on the astral plane, after the death of the corporeal body. (Note that spiritualists of past and present also believe in the "ka", but do not refer to the "ka" as soul. Many spiritualists have the ability to see "ka" and usually refer to them as "ghosts".)

Dead bodies were mummified to create a continuing link with the "ba". Note that Hollywood and movies have conveyed an inaccurate portrait of mummies, especially their coming back to life. Mummification was for remembrance only and not meant to preserve the bodies for use after death, as the critical internal organs and brains were removed before embalming (or dehydrating with Natron, which is a mixture of sodium carbonate and bicarbonate drying agents).

Unfortunately, most ancient Egyptian scriptures (or writings) no longer exist. One of the few surviving documents is the (Ancient Egyptian) Book of the Dead (also known as The Chapters of Coming Forth By Day), which is a collection of funerary scriptures, that was inscribed on the stone sarcophagi or written on papyrus that was placed inside mummys' coffins. The oldest chapters are dated circa 1600 B.C., but the book also incorporates some earlier scriptures from the Coffin Texts of the Middle Kingdom (circa 2000 B.C.) and the Pyramid Texts of the Old Kingdom (circa 2600 B.C.). One of the more popular scriptures is the "Papyrus of Ani" dated circa 1250 B.C..

One of the famous symbols of the ancient Egyptians is the Ankh, that represents the key of life. Like many other religions, the religion of the ancient Egyptians also foretells of a Judgement Day. Their jackal god named Anubis represents the judge in the Netherworld or Underworld and holds the ankh in his hand. Anubis weighs the deceased person's heart (representing moral righteousness and deeds) in the left tray of a scale against the feather of Ma'at, who is goddess of Truth and Justice in the right tray of the scale. (Sometimes, the full goddess Ma'at is shown seated on the right tray of the scale.)

If the heart of the deceased outweighs the feather of Ma'at, then the deceased is heavy with evil deeds. The god Ammit with the crocodile head and hippopotamus legs will devour the heart and condemn the deceased to hell or back to life on earth. However, if the feather of Ma'at outweighs the heart, then the deceased has led a righteous life with good deeds. The god Horus with a falcon head may lead the deceased to Osiris, Lord of the Underworld to join the afterlife in heaven. The ibis-headed god Thoth, who represents wisdom is present and records the outcome.

Rosicrucianism regards Akhnaton (1355 B.C.) of Egypt as their first Grand Master. What we know from history is that Akhnaton (a.k.a. Amenhotep IV) was a very important spiritual priest-king (both priest and king) of Egypt, son of Queen Tiy and husband of Nefertiti.


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