One of the earliest complex societies created in the world belonged to the Egyptians. By 3100 BCE they developed a system of writing, a complex bureaucracy, record keeping, and much more. Egyptians were extremely religious and believed in an afterlife. They believed that when they died they appeared before a god named Osiris, and he would determine whether their soul went to a good place or bad. For the best chance of having a good afterlife, the Egyptians followed a list of things to prove to Osiris that they were deserving of this good place.
This book is called the Egyptian Book of the Dead. This book consisted of many things for the Egyptians to follow in order to have a better chance of having a better afterlife. This book covers many ways to earn a happy afterlife, but there are three main ideas. First, it is imperative that the Egyptians were honest. The Book of the Dead listed several ways to not lie, for example, it stated “men should not cheat in measuring grain.” Second, the Egyptians stressed the importance of not causing harm to one another. The Book of the Dead shows this by listing multiple ways that a person should not hurt another. One stated “I have caused no man to suffer.” Lastly, the Egyptians stressed that it is imperative to take care of the nearby land, especially the Nile. The Nile is the only reason that Egypt is habitable, and by tampering with it could cause destruction to the Egyptian society. The Book of the Dead states, “I have not obstructed water when it should run.”
When looking at our current society in The United States, it is easy to identify what we stand for: democracy and freedom. To understand what those two words mean to the United States’ society, I turned to the Bill of Rights and common laws in the United States. There are three main things that if you follow, you will be considered a good citizen of the United States. First, Americans value the first amendment. The first amendment grants United States citizens freedom of speech, religion, and much more. If you want to be considered a good citizen of the United States, do not take away a person’s first amendment. Second, Americans value due process. Due process is essentially that you are innocent until proven guilty, and you can take conflicts to court. To be considered a good citizen of the United States, do not deny people’s rights to due process. Lastly, it is imperative to Americans that we do not harm each other. If you want to be a good citizen, do not hurt another human being.
After analyzing the Egyptian Book of the Dead, and the Constitution of the United States, there are similarities and differences. The Book of the Dead and the Constitution both stress the importance of not causing harm to another human being. Also, they both say that it is not acceptable to steal or trespass. The differences come in when the Egyptians mention the importance of their land, and how it is unacceptable to obstruct it. Meanwhile the Constitution does not mention anything similar. The Constitution also states that the freedom of religion is allowed, meanwhile in Egypt, they all must follow the Book of the Dead to please Osiris, one of their gods.
My own Book of the Dead:
- You must chew with your mouth closed
- You must have watched every episode of Peaky Blinders
- You must not clap when the plane lands
- You must go to all the Navy lacrosse games
- You must call your mother every week.
Word Count: 559