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The religions of ancient Mesopotamia and Egypt have long been studied by fascinated students scholars and the like The remains left behind from these civilizations have provided great insight into their culture philosophy and religion For these and most ancient cultures the temple was the center of the city often playing many roles - religious social economic etc It is important to view the religious concepts of these civilizations in light of their environment Religion evolves in the context of the need for survival and such needs are unique to a civilization given their environment People believe in what they need to believe in order to survive The Egyptians had two types of temples - cultic and funerary Central to their religion were the concepts of divine kingship and consubstantiality Mesopotamian religion tended to center around lament as well as the division between the earthly and the cosmos Although the temples of the Mesopotamia and Egypt had significant similarities the main disparities in the roles they played for each civilization mainly stems from 1 the challenges each had to face as well as 2 the resulting differing concepts of divine kingship and human existence Before discussing the specifics of the role of the temple it is important to understand the source of the conceptual disparities beginning with Egypt Egypt was a civilization blessed with life-giving Nile fertile soil and consequently an abundance of agricultural and other survival necessities The Egyptians more sheltered and prosperous presence predisposed them to a sort of smugness of their own impressive existence Their great success and stability were attributed to the ruler of the united Egypt As mentioned earlier the Egyptians operated on the concept that the Pharaoh was a divine entity The essentiality of this concept of divine kingship in Egypt can be well demonstrated by looking at what happened when the concept was in question During the Intermediate periods when divine kingship was in doubt Egypts once stable
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