6 Pages

Near & Middle Eastern Civilizations
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Katja Goebs

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RELIGION I: FUNERARY BELIEFS AND COSMOS Attitudes to death  Avoid eternal death at all cost  Maintain status  Continue contact with living o Reflected in tomb decorations o Tomb owner as  Recipient of offering  In charge of his affairs  Eternally young and beautiful o Shabti – serves you in afterlife ( little dolls) Transition  Going “west” o Sunset. Realm of Osiris o Boat, sedan-chair, on floor  Typical OK formula o I have come today from my town o I have descended from ny nomes  “Journey west” also represented in funerary procession( on foot and boat) o relatives, mourners, priest, perform rituals o finally – desceased travelling to PAPYRUS THICKET  where horus hidden  transition to death o Fraught with dangers o come prepared 1. mummification – mummy = “house for soul” 2. tomb = “house for eternity” 3. Rituals – ensure transfiguration and transition 4. Accumulation of arcane knowledge of hereafter ( ways, guardians, modalities) 5. Attesting to one’s exemplary life in accordance with Maat in Judgement of the Dead before Osiris ASPECTS OF THE PERSON  In death – humans likened to gods (following royal example) – immortality  Interact with the living out out of tomb - in cult or dreams  Four different aspects of person or “soul” 1. AKH – “effective” part( luminous in hereafter) a. Egyptian “transfigurational (rituals)” = s –akhu b. In NK, respected individuals venerated as akh en Ra i. Intercede with gods on behalf of living c. Akh could appear as ghost 2. KA – “lifes source” also “double” a. “inhabits” mummy or statue. Unites with body at birth b. some texts dying = “uniting with Ka” 3. BA – (closest to our soul) a. Separated from body at death b. Human- headed bird going between this life and the next i. Needed tomb and mummy as resting place ii. Also represents ability to change – facilitating rebirth MUMMIFICATION Ideology  Preserves body – house for soul  Liken deceased to Osiris o Cut to pieces by Seth, reassembled by Isis and Nephthys  1 mummy  70 days of mummification o corresponds to absence of Osiris star from sky PROCEDURES  secret event performed by specialists not share knowledge  only 2 egyptian accounts for procedure o from roman perios o ritual of embalming Apis bull o only rough outline  supervising priest = “master of Secrets” o Anubis mask – mummified head  Most important amulets – charged with magical powers o Heart scarab (dung beetle, symbol of life out of nothing) – on chest o Engraved with BD chapter 30B o Reminding heart to perform well at judgement  Mummy mask – omperishable head DEVELOPMENT  Egyptian climate – bodies dry up  Intro of tombs and coffins o Other means to preserve body necessary  First attempts – wrapping in linen  From OK -> removing inner organs o Gleaned from meat preservation  From MK onwards – removal of BRAIN o At first rare – top people – royal family  In NK – typical remoce brain ans innards o Technological perfected  End of Pharaonic perios o Techniques deteriorated  Even Coptic monks embalmed PROCEDURES  Account of greek historian – HERODOTUS ( 5 cent BCE)  Embalmers worked outside settlements at Nile/ canal – water needed  Body on bier or bed  Work began on head o Removal of brain with bronze hook  Cavity filled with resinous liquid, bees’ wax, aromatic paint oil  Heated – solidified skull  Sometime just filled with linen CANOPIC JARS  Abdomen cut oped o Removal of viscers  Treated separately  Placed in canopic jars – identified as “sons of Horus”  Heart left inside  Chest filled with linen packing or sawdust  Used salt to expract moisture – natron  Doctors and embalmers separate o But mummies allow us to study diseases THE COFFIN  More protection from decay and vandalism  Could be put into furthyr “enclosure” o Sarcophagus  Doors
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