Tuesday, 8 July 2008

We live, we die, and the wheels on the bus go round and round.

The Ancient Egyptians. One of the first and most civilized societies in history. Faithful, superstitious and somewhat confusing, the Egyptians had some of the most interesting beliefs in the spiritual world.

The Egyptians believed that the soul could not carry onto the afterlife if they had not preserved the body and organs of the deceased, not doing so would mean the deceased would loose their identity. They would remove the organs from the corpse and place them in jars symbolising the Four Sons of Horus. Then they would embalm the body with spices and wrap it up in bandages, embedding talismans and amulets within the wrappings, this is known as mummification.

So, what happens to the soul? Well, the soul has to goes to Duat, the world of the dead, and passes through a type of "Judgement Day". They would undergo multiple riddles, tests and questions. The god of mummification, Anubis, checks the purity of their heart, whether or not it is weighed down by the soul's regret and guilt from his or her life on earth. They do this by measuring it's weight and comparing it to a feather representing the goddess of Truth. A heart weighing less than the feather is considered pure and one weighing more than the feather would be eaten up by the demon Ammit, part hippo, part crocodile and part lion. This is also why most people put in a surrogate heart with the corpse, disposing of the real heart belonging to the deceased.

Those who passed the judgement were able to continue a long and dangerous journey, passing through somewhat 15-21 gates to get to Osiris in Aaru, also known as Paradise.

However confusing that may be, at one gate, the Egyptians are asked two questions, both determining their fate.

“Have you found joy in your life?”

Ask yourself if you have. Have you truly found that level of happiness? Where it's no longer simply being happy, it's being joyful. Joy, like an eruption of bubbles filling your bloodstream, tickling your veins and making its way to your heart, filling it with warm goo.

This seems like a basic question, but really, how many of us have truly found joy? I do believe there are certain moments wherein one is joyful, we experience a burst of euphoria. However, that moment can't be considered as "life". To truly find joy in life, we need what we are passionate about, and this passion and joy needs to be there until the day we die. Why wait until you are older to do the things you want to do? We promise ourselves that we'll live in the moment, but it seems inevitable that we plan and store experiences for the future.

But, why?

The second one, although similar, proves to be more challenging.

“Have you brought joy to others in your life?”

Think about it. Would you get into Egyptian heaven?


jake said...

cool blog! shows a different side of you. it made me think too.. hahaha! keep up the good work joowannna:)

Joanna Superstuff said...

yeah the non-gory side, ey?