Archive for the ‘The Ancient World’ Category


Kristen’s Beliefs on Religion in Ancient Civilizations

September 11, 2008

Religion is an important aspect no matter what century we’re talking about. However, in ancient civilizations such as ancient Egypt, Mesopatamia, and China, their lives were based around religion.

In Egypt, they believed that there was a god for many aspects of nature, making them polytheistic. Egyptians believed the sun god was Amon-Re. Another main god was Osiris, the ruler of the underworld, as well as the god of the Nile. The Egyptians believed Osiris controlled the annual flood of the Nile River. Priests would preach about the gods in their temples. Akhenaton, a young pharoah, worshipped a minor god named Aton and tried to have the Egyptians follow his path by becoming monotheistic. However, this attempt failed.

Much like Egyptians, Sumerians were polytheistic and believed that gods controlled every aspect of life. Unlike Egyptians, Sumerians believed that gods and goddesses were ordinary people. Their highest duty was to keep the gods and goddesses happy by building ziggurats, or pyramid-temples, that lead to towards the heavens. Making the gods and goddesses happy ensured the safety of the people and their city-state.

As the Egyptians and Sumerians, the Chinese were polytheistic as well. They prayed to the gods for good fortune among their family. The Chinese people believed the universe reflected on a delicate balance between two forces, yin and yang. Yin stood for Earth, darkness, and male forces while yang stood for Heaven, light and male forces. Although these sound contradicting, the two forces were not believed to be in opposition. Together, they balanced out the universe.


Gustavo’s Belief of Religion in Ancient Civilizations

September 10, 2008

Religion was very important in many civilizations like Egypt, Mesopotamia, and China. In ancient Egypt religion controlled most of thier lives. For example, Osiris was thought to have controlled the annual floods of the Nile river, which fertilized the land. Isis was said to have taught the women to grind corn, spin flax, weave cloth, and care for children.

In the ancient civilization of Sumer, they were Polytheistic and gods controlled thier lives, just like ancient Egyptian beliefs. The Sumerians beileved that gods and goddesses acted like normal people. However, the Sumerian people had to keep the gods and goddesses happy to ensure the safety of their city-state. To do this, each city built a ziggurat, or pyramid-temple, to worship their god or goddess.

The Chinese were also polytheistic. They beileved gods controlled thier lives as well. For example, Shang Di, the mother goddess that brought plants and animals to Earth, and the king were seen as the link between people and gods. The Chinese prayed to spirits for good fortune to their family. They also beileved that yin & yang was the delicate balance of the universe. Yin stood for Earth, darkness, and female forces while yang was Heaven, light, and male forces. However, to the Chinese these weren’t opposites; they were the well-being of the universe.