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Ancient Egypt Religion

The Gods, Osiris, Isis and Horus, Minor deities, The priests, Immortality, The Book of the Dead, Magic and Corruption



Beneath and above everything, Egypt was religious. We find it there in every stage and form from totemism to theology; we see Ancient Egyupt Religion influence in literature, in government, in art, in everything except morality.





Ancient Egypt Religion




Ancient Egypt Religion

And it is not only varied, it is tropically abundant; only in Rome and India shall we find so plentiful a pantheon.

We cannot understand the Egyptian or man until we study his gods.

In this part we will discover Ancient Egypt religion, gods, customes, influence and more.



Sky God

Sky God
In the beginning, said the Egyptian, was the sky; and to the end this and the Nile remained his chief divinities.


Sun God

Sun God
The moon was a god, perhaps the oldest of all that were worshiped in Ancient Egypt Religion; but in the official theology the greatest of the gods was the sun.


Plant Gods

Plant Gods
Many plants were sacred in Ancient Egypt Religion and treated as Plant Gods. The palm-tree that shaded them amid the desert, the spring that gave them drink in the oasis, the grove where they could meet and rest, the sycamore flourishing miraculously in the sand; these were, with excellent reason, holy things and Plant Gods.


Animal Gods

Animal Gods
More popular in Ancient Egypt Religion were the animal gods; they were so numerous that they filled the Egyptian pantheon like a chattering menagerie. In one nome or another, in one period or another, Egyptians worshiped the bull, the crocodile, the hawk, the cow, the goose, the goat, the ram, the cat, the dog, the chicken, the swallow, the jackal, the serpent.


Sex Gods

Sex Gods
The goat and the bull were especially sacred to the Egyptians as representing sexual creative power. They were not merely symbols of Osiris, but incarnations of him. Often Osiris was depicted with large and prominent organs, as a mark of his supreme power; and models of him in this form, or with a triple phallus, were borne in religious processions by the Egyptians.


Human Gods

Human Gods
At last the gods became human or rather, men became gods. Like the deities of Greece, the personal human gods of Egypt were merely superior men and women, made in heroic mould, but composed of bone and muscle, flesh and blood.


Isis, Osiris and Horus

Isis
Profound, too, was the myth of Isis, the Great Mother. She was not only the loyal sister and wife of Osiris; in a sense she was greater than he, for like woman in general she had conquered death through love. Nor was she merely the black soil of the Delta, fertilized by the touch of Osiris-Nile, and making all Egypt rich with her fecundity.


The Priests

The Priests
Hence the priests of Egypt were the necessary props of the throne, and the secret police of the social order. Given a faith of such complexity, a class had to arise adept in magic and ritual, whose skill would make it indispensable in approaching the gods.


Immortality

Immortality
What distinguished this religion above everything else was its emphasis on immortality. If Osiris, the Nile, and all vegetation, might rise again. so might man.


Book of the Dead

The Book of the Dead
The best way was to buy the Book of the Dead scrolls for which the priests had written prayers, for-mulas and charms calculated to appease, even to deceive, Osiris. When, after a hundred vicissitudes and perils, the dead soul at last reached Osiris, it was to address the great Judge in some such manner as this


Magic and Corruption

Magic and Corruption
The gods themselves used magic and charms against one another. The literature of Egypt is full of magicians of wizards who dry up lakes with a word, or cause severed limbs to jump back into place, or raise the dead. The king had magicians to help or guide him; and he himself was believed to have a magical power to make the rain fall, or the river rise.






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