An overview of the religious beliefs of the sumerian religion

A stone tomb constructed to house a deceased pharaoh of Egypt. A form of government in which God or some supreme deity is the ruler. A stepped foundation or structure that held a shrine or temple in the Mesopotamian religion.

An overview of the religious beliefs of the sumerian religion

Cultural background

Ancient Man and His First Civilizations Sumerian Religion Sumerian religion has its roots in the worship of nature, such as the wind and water.

The ancient sages of Sumer found it necessary to bring order to that which they did not understand and to this end they came to the natural conclusion that a greater force was at work.

The forces of nature were originally worshipped as themselves. However, over time the human form became associated with those forces.

Contemporary or world religions

Gods in human form were now seen to have control over nature. The Cosmos The Sumerians regarded the universe as consisting of heaven and earth. The Sumerian term for universe is an-ki, which translates to "heaven-earth. This was enclosed by a solid surface which they believed was made of tin.

Between earth and heavens was a substance known as lil, which means "air" or "breath. Completely surrounding the an-ki was the primeval sea. The sea gave birth to the an-ki, which eventually gave rise to life. Sumerian theologians believed that every intricacy of the cosmos was controlled by a divine and immortal being.

The cosmos adhered to established rules. The world below was known as the nether world.

An overview of the religious beliefs of the sumerian religion

The Sumerians believed that the dead descended into the nether world, also known as the under world. The souls of the dead entered the nether world from their graves, but there were also special entrances in cities.

A person could enter the nether world from one of these special entrances, but could not leave unless a substitute was found to take their place in the world below.

A person entering the nether world must adhere to certain rules: He must not make any noise. He must not carry any weapons. He must not wear clean clothes. He must not behave in a normal manner towards his family.

He must not wear sandals. He must not douse himself with "good" oil. Failure to adhere to these rules would cause the person to be held fast by the denizens of the nether world until a god intervened on their behalf.

The nether world was ruled by Nergal and Ereshkigal. They had at their disposal a number of deities, including a number of sky-gods who feel out of faith with later Sumerian theologians. After descending into the nether world a soul had to cross a river with the aid of a boatman who ferried them across.

They then confronted Utu, who judged their soul. If the judgment was positive the soul would live a life of happiness. It was, however, generally believed by Sumerians that life in the nether world was dismal. The Gods The gods of Sumer were human in form and maintained human traits.

They ate, drank, married, and fought amongst each other. Even though the gods were immortal and all-powerful, it was apparent that they could be hurt and even killed. Each god adhered to a set of rules of divine authority known as me.

The me ensured that each god was able to keep the cosmos functioning according to the plans handed down to them by Enlil. Hundreds of deities were recognized in the Sumerian pantheon.

Many were wives, children, and servants of the more powerful deities. The gods were organized into a caste system. At the head of the system was the king or supreme ruler. The four most important deities were An, Enlil, Enki, and Ninhursag. These were the four creator deities who created all of the other gods.

An was initially the head of the pantheon, though he was eventually seceded by Enlil. Enlil is seen as the most important god.Mesopotamian Religion The cultures of Mesopotamia had a polytheistic belief system, which means that the people believed in multiple gods instead of just one.

They also believed in demons created by the gods, which could be good or evil. Beliefs and practices relating to the afterlife also varied with socio-economic status and differed within official and popular religious paradigms. With this in mind, however, cultural continuity between the Sumerian civilization and its successors allows a synthesis of diverse sources in order to provide a working introduction to Mesopotamian.

Sep 12,  · Celtic religion, religious beliefs and practices of the ancient Celts. The Celts, an ancient Indo-European people, reached the apogee of their influence and territorial expansion during the 4th century bc, extending across the length of Europe from Britain to Asia Minor.

Mesopotamian Religion.

The cultures of Mesopotamia had a polytheistic belief system, which means that the people believed in multiple gods instead of just one. They also believed in demons created by the gods, which could be good or evil. The Sumerian religion encompassed the beliefs, mythology and rites of the ancient civilization of Sumer in southern Mesopotamia.

Practitioners of the religion worshipped a pantheon of gods and devised a creation story that they wrote on cuneiform tablets.

The beliefs and practices of the Sumerians and Akkadians, and their successors, the Babylonians and Assyrians. They inhabited ancient Mesopotamia in the millennia before the Christian era.

Sumerian religion - Wikipedia Search Overview of ancient and contemporary religions A brief overview of several ancient and contemporary or world religions, most of which are present in this encyclopedia. Ancient religions Anatolian The beliefs and practices of the ancient peoples and civilizations of Turkey and Armenia.

These religious beliefs and practices form a single stream of tradition.

Sumerian Religion