Essay Paper on The Mummies of Egypt
Will the mysteries of Egypt ever fully be discovered? There are so many questions that are unanswered and the truth may never be found no matter how much time we spend investigating and how much technological knowledge we gain. Considering how long ago the Egyptians had walked and lived on the Earth, we still have an enormous amount of information about their lives and their way of living. One of the most interesting procedures of their time is how they prepared for the afterlife, especially for their great pharaohs. Their culture is so different from the way that we as Americans live ours lives today and our beliefs about happens to us when we die. It is still not understood why they did exactly what they did. How did they arrive at the conclusions that they did? Not to say that they were wrong, but why do we not practice the art of mummification or believe so strongly in an afterlife as they did?
Egyptians came up with the idea of mummification after becoming more aware as to what exactly happened to the deceased when they were buried in the desert. In the beginning, they would just dispose of a body by placing it somewhere in the arid region. They then found out that when they buried their dead in the extremely hot and dry climate, the corpse became preserved and this worked greatly for them because the body would be able to continue on happily in the afterlife. Not too much time had passed when the Egyptians realized that random animals were getting a hold of their precious ancestors, tearing up the dead bodies, and ultimately destroying them. The Egyptians believed that the body of the dead was, to some Makela 2 extent, supposed to be more perfect and eternal than the body had been in real life so you can see how preservation is of utmost importance. Therefore, they decided to start mummifying the bodies of the deceased in order to keep them intact for the afterlife. After the corpse had been mummified, it would then be placed into a wooden case/coffin, which would create even further protection.
The mummification process is really quite interesting. The first, and most perfect process of mummification, usually performed on respected individuals, is to insert an iron hook into the nostrils and pull out as much of the brain as possible. Whatever portion of the brain was unattainable they would simply wash out with drugs. Next the flank is sliced open and all of the contents are removed, excluding the heart.
The heart was thought of as the most important part of the physical body. This came in to purpose when a decision had to be made as to whether one was to move on to the afterlife or if they had forfeited their chance. The process consists of weighing their heart against a feather. If the heart weighed the same, that person had led a good life and could continue on. But, if the heart was heavier than the feather then the Ammit, a hideous creature thought to have a crocodile head, the foreparts of a lion, and the back end of a hippopotamus, would consume that individual…
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