Egyptian religion during the time of the ancients was not something they remembered on occasion. Religion was part of everyday life and everything they did was infused with it.
Some priests were of such high rank that their power sometimes surpassed that of the king himself...
...And then there were the mummies and tombs - an obsession with the Egyptian Afterlife.
The people of ancient Egypt may seem like a superstitious bunch (and rightly so), and in reality Egyptian Magic was a big part of religious rituals. Their religion included cultish traditions, sacrifices, offerings, spells, curses, and strange depictions of religious figures - all of which seem like a sort of voodoo.
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.
From the Egyptian 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.
They also had numerous writings called Funerary Texts that contain rituals to help the deceased reach the afterlife. The most famous of which is the Egyptian Book of the Dead. It contains the description of one of the most elaborate ceremonies in the afterlife: The Weighing of the Heart.
It's actually quite amazing to refer to our current beliefs and note the similarities as well as the differences. I dare say that I believe many of today's spiritual practices have their origin in these ancient traditions, including the ancient Egyptian.
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.
Something to return home to after the journey of physical life ends.
In the case of the ancient Egyptian religion, it had many of such a thing :)
Return from Egyptian Religion to the Experience Ancient Egypt Home Page
Here's another website dedicated just to mythology that you may find interesting: Read Legends and Myths
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