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Ancient Egyptian concept of the soul



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The ancient Egyptians believed the soul was divided into five parts Ren, Ba, Ka, Sheut, and Ib.

Ib - Heart

The Egyptians believed the heart held the emotions and thoughts. Believed to be weighed on the scales of Anubis by the feather of Maat. The Ib decided what your fate would be after death.

Sheut - Shadow

Believed to be the shadow of the person. The Sheut was the essence of the person and the person could not exist with them nor could a person exist without their shadow.

Ren - Name

Given at birth. A person was believed to live as long as their name lasted. Egyptians often went to great lengths to keep their names talked about and had them carved into monuments and surrounded by cartouche (magical rope).

Ba - Personality and Spirit

Ba is considered the spirit. Ba is believed to have a unique personality based on the person who has it. The Ba was shown as a bird that flew from the body to unite with the Ka at death.

Ka - Life Force

One of the five parts of the Egyptian idea of the soul. The Ka was thought of as the life force and left the body during death. Ka was believed to be in food and drink and was placed with the dead for offerings. Egyptian Mythology believes that at death the Ba and the Ka unite through Nehebkau before entering Duat.