Osiris, the god of the dead and the afterlife, and the goddess Ma’at were widely illustrated in tombs. ... ... middle of paper ... ...n since the king would dwell with the sun god, Re, in the afterlife. In early predynastic burials, many servants and attendants were sacrificed and enclosed in the king’s tomb. This action was regarded as a high honour in which they were able to serve the king in the afterlife. Even after his death, the king remained well respected and worshipped by many individuals in Egypt.
For the Egyptians, art was made to serve a particular purpose, usually a religious one. Religious beliefs largely dictated what artists created, especially the paintings that filled Egyptian temples and tombs. Temples were decorated with paintings and filled with statues of gods and kings in the belief that doing this served the gods, showed devotion to the king, and maintained the order of the universe. The Egyptian belief in life after death was perhaps the most important part of their culture and probably helped to stabilize their society for so many centuries. The laws and rules of code the ancient Egyptian’s lived by daily also helped them to understand the seemingly ambiguous nature in The Tale of Sinuhe (1875 BC).
Thus, the art and architecture of Ancient Egypt stemmed directly from their religion. Egyptian theology, with its deified pharaohs and strange animal-headed gods, was complicated, but the most important belief was that survival after death depended upon the preservation of the body. This belief would influence the architectural design of the tomb, where the corpse was ultimately sealed (Silverman:142, 1997). Immortality was only for privileged royal and priestly beings (Stierlin:54, 1983).This implies that their tombs would be somewhat prestigious and not just and ordinary burial site. At the day of resurrection the Ka or soul would re-enter the dead body; this meant that it must be there, intact, ready for that moment.
This in turn made them a polytheistic culture. The Egyptians reliance on the land was so important, that it was not uncommon to see important land marks and other important aspects of their culture, show up in their creation story and other myths. They had over one hundred gods and goddess they worshipped. But like many cultures, the culture changed with time from a polytheistic a culture. The Egyptians beliefs in the gods and goddess they worshipped came from their reliance on the land; that in their creation stories and many of the god and goddess creation stories have references to important land marks in Egypt.
In order to achieve longevity of life and prosperous crop, they created art as homage to their God. One particular pharaoh, Amenhotep IV, is very interested in a monotheistic religion. He changes his name to Akhenaten, meaning “on the behalf of Aten”. Much of what we think of Egyptian art came from his Amarna period. The most common theme in their sculpture is worshipping.
Obviously death, burial and the afterlife, was a major part of Egyptian life that was touched a great deal by religion. Another major aspect of Egyptian life that was heavily influenced by religion was art. Almost all paintings and other forms of art were either done for the gods or representing the gods or pharaohs. Artists were even considered some of the highest members of society because they did work for the deities. An interesting fact about Egyptian art was the awkward position the bodies were in.
In source B, the head of each god is used as a topper and are used for protection of the organs of the mummy. Source B is useful when understanding the role of ancient Egyptian gods in the afterlife. In conclusion, the ancient Egyptian burial practices are fundamental to the beliefs of ancient Egyptians.
Eventually, the Egyptians began to use Hieroglyphics instead to ensure that the Pharaoh’s soul would make its way smoothly to the afterlife. The pyramids contained tombs, which consisted of items that would help the dead maintain success and happiness in the afterlife. “The
During his time of rule Egyptian had very barbaric characteristics. He is believed to have taught the Egyptian the way of agriculture and how to worship gods. However, with the conflict faced between Seth and Osiris he also became the god of the afterlife. After his time of rule, the book of the dead became a very important piece of history for the people of ancient Egypt, especially when it pertained to the idea of the afterlife. The book of the dead was “a collection of spells and illustrations written on a papyrus roll” (Taylor 5).
The afterlife was an essential part of the Egyptian society, and embalming a dead body was a great, ceremonious task that citizens went through. The embalming process was designed to assist the dead in navigating the afterlife and finding peace. There was even a process called the “opening of the mouth”, that allowed the dead to speak and retain their bodily functions. The gods were the rulers of space and time, and the Pharaoh was believed to be a higher human himself. It was he (or she, in some cases) that talked to the gods and bridged their otherworldly bodies to the common folk.