The Sun God
In the Life of Ancient Egypt Religion
The Sun God in the Life of Ancient Egypt Religion
The moon was a god, perhaps the oldest of all that were worshiped in Egypt; but in the official theology the greatest of the gods was the sun god.
Sometimes the Sun God was worshiped as the supreme deity Ra or Re.
The bright father who fertilized Mother Earth with rays of penetrating heat and light; sometimes it was a divine calf, born anew at every dawn, sailing the sky slowly in a celestial boat, and descending into the west, at evening, like an old man tottering to his grave.
Or the sun god was the god Horus.
Taking the graceful form of a falcon, flying majestically across the heavens day after day as if in supervision of his realm, and becoming one of the recurrent symbols of Egyptian religion and royalty.
Always Ra, or the sun god, was the Creator: at his first rising, seeing the earth desert and bare, he had flooded it with his energizing rays, and all living things—vegetable, animal and human had sprung pell-mell from his eyes, and been scattered over the world.
The earliest men and women, being direct children of Ra, had been perfect and happy; by degrees their descendants had taken to evil ways, and had forfeited this perfection and happiness.
Whereupon Ra, the Sun God dissatisfied with his creatures, had destroyed a large part of the human race.
Learned Egyptians questioned this popular belief, and asserted on the contrary (like certain Sumerian scholars), that the first men had been like brutes, without articulate speech or any of the arts of life.
All in all it was an intelligent mythology, expressing piously man's gratitude to earth and sun.
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