In what way did the Egyptian belief in the afterlife influence the cities that the Egyptians built? Discuss the construction of the pyramids, and conduct external research about other artistic achievements. To what extent do religious beliefs today influence how our cities are built?
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The part about the tombs is right -- they were regularly targets for thieves (the punishment for getting caught was death). But the ancient Egyptians didn't necessarily believe in reincarnation the way that Hindus did. The mummified animals found in tombs were often sacred representations of the gods -- Bast was a cat headed goddess, for instance -- or a favorite pet to accompany the dead, but not necessarily a vessel for the dead to return to the world in.
However, the remains were key to the process by which the ancient Egyptians believed was necessarily to reach the afterlife. They were all parts of a machine that would send a person to their final reward (if they survived judgment and didn't get their heart eaten). That's why they put a lot of effort into building tombs and such to protect their remains because if they were destroyed, they believed that would ruin any chance for the deceased to make it in one piece to the afterlife.
Of course, the thieves didn't care. They just wanted the gold and often hacked mummies apart to get at the treasures wrapped with them.