Ancient Egyptian Religion & Mythology
Ancient Egyptian Religion and Mythology was not something the people remembered on occasion. Religion was part of everyday life and everything they did was infused with it. Myths and legends had important functions like instilling ethics and morals, or as warning against doing wrong.
Medicine was part physical part spiritual. There were hundreds of Gods and Goddesses each with a unique role. A very early form of Monotheism developed in Ancient Egypt.
There were usually two capitals of the country; one administrative and one religious. Every home included a shrine in the front room. The temples were a main center in the cities and villages.
Some priests were of such high rank that their power sometimes surpassed that of the king himself…
Deities and Rituals of Ancient Egyptian Religion
The different traditions of ancient Egyptian Religion centered around a specific deity, and was highly ritualistic. Magic was used in almost everything. Rituals included sacrifices, offerings, spells, curses, and even voodoo dolls.
But they did actually have logical reasons for these practices.
For example: although the Gods and Goddesses took strange forms (often with animal features), the Egyptians believed the deities to be formless. These appearances were a tool for identifying them from each other. They also helped in understanding the main characteristics of each God or Goddess.
Elaborate Ancient Egyptian Myths were Used to Understand the World
From the creation myth to legends of heroism and resurrection, tall tales were told for their meaning. They used mythology to symbolize their deities’ roles, and also as explanations of what were then natural phenomena.
It’s actually quite amazing to refer to our current beliefs and note the similarities as well as the differences.
To risk stating the obvious, it seems that since time immemorial humans have longed for something bigger and more powerful than themselves to reach out to. Something that could give meaning to an otherwise random existence. Something that can protect and redeem.
But anyway, here is a list of some of the most important ancient Egyptian myths:
- The Creation Myth of Heliopolis
- The Creation Myth of Hermopolis
- The Love of Isis and Osiris
- The Legend of the Wandering of Isis
- The King as Cannibal
- The Battle of Horus and Set
- The Eye of Ra and the Destruction of Mankind
A lot more on the different myths and rituals of ancient Egyptian traditions to come, so please do check back here once in a while to get the latest!
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