History of Afterlife in Different Religions Egyptian Part 2

About the views on life after death and the afterlife and history of the beliefs in the Egyptian religion.



At Amenthe's gate sits a hybrid monster, part crocodile, part lion, part hippopotamus, who warns that he will tear out the heart of sinful travelers. Inside the gates, the soul wanders through magnificent halls until it comes to a place where there are 42 assessors, who initially hear its case. To them the soul must make the Declaration of Innocence, saying, "I have not blasphemed, I have not killed any man, I have not robbed, I am pure, I am pure, I am pure," etc. Then comes the awesome final trial in the Hall of the Two Truths (approving and condemning) before Osiris and a tribunal of deities. Here three deities, Horus, Anubis, and Thoth, supervise the weighing of the heart of the deceased on a scale balanced against a feather, symbol of Maat, goddess of truth. Anubis adjusts the balance carefully while Thoth, inventor of writing, sits ready to record the result. If the heart and Maat exactly balance, it proves the sincerity of the dead person's Declaration of Innocence. Thoth's report is then given to the divine tribunal, and the deceased advances to the throne of Osiris to receive verdict and sentence.

If the soul is condemned, it is either scourged back to earth to be reincarnated as a vile animal or plunged into the tortures of fire and devils. Alternatively, it might be driven up into the atmosphere to be tossed by violent storms until its sins are expiated. The rule of this zone is Pooh, overseer of souls in penance. After their purgation in this region, the souls are granted probation through another life in human form.

The blessed soul lives eternally with the gods in Amenthe, where it may encounter its parents, offspring, friends, and lovers. The deceased's servants may accompany him to Amenthe, for there is work to be done. The blessed hunts and fishes, plows and sows, reaps and gathers in the Field of the Sun on the banks of the Heavenly Nile. He will receive his reward in inexhaustible crops of beans and wheat, with bread from divine granaries and figs and grapes to eat. And if in life he has been a pharaoh, he may join the blissful company of the sun-god Ra as he sails on the celestial Nile in his radiant barque.

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