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By Simson Najovits

An award-winning author and foreign journalist leads the final reader via historical Egypt in a 2-volume paintings that explores the maze of evidence and fantasies, and examines Egypt's position within the historical past of faith and monotheism particularly. He exhibits how Egypt either motivated and mystified different civilizations for centuries.

Writing in a simple to learn narrative literary variety whereas respecting the norms of Egyptological scholarship, the writer examines the contradictory critiques of significant Egyptologists (and the foremost loonies), and brings us in the direction of Egypt's middle that means and impression. alongside the best way, he illuminates the mesmerizing, creative fantastic thing about the Egyptian saga. historic Egypt outfitted a society on a extraordinary mix of the hot, the necessary and the gorgeous, whereas protecting primitive magic, obscurantism, and the childish yet terribly poetic. Egypt was once additionally probably the most positive international locations ever based, inventing positive solutions to lots of man's basic questions.

(Volume I, ISBN 978-0-87586-221-7, situates the Egyptian faith, political procedure and society in the contexts a few of them stretching again so far as sooner than c. 4000 BC of the early heritage of faith, mythology, expertise, artwork, psychology, sociology, geography and migrations of peoples. It surveys the non secular underpinnings of the society, together with the founding of the 1st kingdom - and the 1st kingdom to proclaim its sacred nature. Divine kingship, the holy urban and capital urban have been invented here.)

This, quantity II, discusses the foremost outcomes that arose from Egypt's approach. The spiritual, funerary, afterlife and societal perspectives of Egyptians are in comparison to the opposite significant religions and societies. Their possible impression on Greek faith and on Hebrew and Christian monotheisms is thoroughly traced, as are Egypto-Hebrew relatives. The highlights of Egypt's non secular, political, colonial, inventive and literary existence are tested in addition to the following decline of Egypt.

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2181), being aper, “equipped,” for the afterlife and maintaining oneself there with all its implications involved such high costs that it was reserved for the rich: probably not more than several hundred people per year. There was a profusion of magnificent tombs for the nobles, but tombs for the commoners remained elementary and makeshift. The wages in kind paid to craftsmen and peasants were usually just sufficient for subsistence; they could in no way cover the immense costs involved in the afterlife process.

In another 25 years, Pepy I (c. 4 The mummified, pyramid-entombed pharaoh was now Osiris upon death. The pharaoh’s afterlife goal was still to merge in the sky, in “lightland,” with the sun god Re, but the dead pharaoh was now also Osiris in the sky after being Horus while alive. Almost all of the Early Dynastic pharaohs had been identified with the falcon god Horus, but now the ruling pharaoh was simultaneously the son of Re, the incarnation of the Horus, who was the son of Osiris and Isis, and who had been joined to the earlier Horus falcon, and Osiris when dead.

It was just as logical that with their central animistic, magical outlook they did not fully implement the one further step — authentic moral judgment involving authentic moral recompense or punishment — which would have transformed their notion of the afterlife into a morally earned spiritual Paradise. The astonishing thing is that they did invent the necessary moral system and recompense by gradually re-interpreting the meaning and role of goddess Maat. The Old Kingdom (c. 2686–2181 BC) ankh-em-maat, “living by maat,” gradually came to mean not only respecting the primeval order, but doing the decent thing, the ethical thing in this life.

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