How did the Egyptians view the afterlife? How do you view the afterlife? Does this effect your practice at all?
In the most simplistic explanation that I can manage, the ancient Egyptians believed that after death, your soul would go through a series of adventures through the afterlife, culminating in the Weighing of the Heart ceremony. If you were a good person, you were allowed into their version of Heaven, if you weren’t though…well, Ammit devoured your heart and you ceased to exist.
As for me–what do I believe about the Afterlife? I’m not sure, really. I do believe in an Afterlife, but I have a feeling it can’t be defined by our narrow and incredibly limited human words.
My basic theory is that after death, we go to the Afterlife, but we can pick which one. So if you are Christian, you can go to Heaven, Wiccan, the Summerland, so on and so forth. Of course, since in the end it’s all the same place, just with different sections, you can visit loved ones who live in a different neighborhood and even visit the world of the living as well.
I also believe in reincarnation and I think that after a time, you can become reincarnated if you so desire or if there are more lessons that you either NEED to learn or WANT to learn.
As an Anpu Kid, I always make sure to honor my akhu. I talk to them every single day and since I am Irish, I celebrate Samhain, which is one of the times of the year when the Veil between this world and the next is very thin and my blessed dead return to visit.
While it isn’t a Kemetic holiday, I do honor Anpu and Wesir on Samhain. I asked Their permission and They are totally fine with it. So They get offerings on Samhain alongside my akhu and my boyfriend’s akhu.
As a medium of sorts, for this past Samhain I chose to communicate with my akhu and my boyfriend’s akhu via pendulum. His newly-discovered ancestors made contact, as well as relatives he’d known in life. Of course, my ancestors said hello, and it was a great way for both of us to spend time with our families, even though they aren’t in this plane of existence anymore.
In terms of the Weighing of the Heart ceremony, I’m not sure if I believe in it or not. I don’t think it matters, though. I just do my best to be a good person so if it turns out that the ceremony is real, I won’t be devoured by Ammit, haha.
So yes, I’d say how I view the afterlife does effect my practice, but not in a negative way. It also helps bring me closer to my akhu who have passed on, some of whom I didn’t really seem much in life.