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Aton (and Akhenaton)

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aten_disk.jpg

The Aton Disc

Aton (also Aten) is an important but short-lived Egyptian sun god, established under the reign of king Amenhotep IV (1350-1334 B.C). Aton, originally the term for the sun’s disc, came to be the name for the new sun-god.

In a bold step, King Amenhotep IV re-named himself Akhenaton and introduced his new monotheistic religion based on the sun’s rising and setting. However, archaeological evidence suggests that most of the Egyptian populace continued to secretly worship the old gods, despite Akhenaton’s decree that all must accept his new religion.

The pioneering psychologist Sigmund Freud thought it noteworthy that Aton was the first monotheistic deity and compared him to the God of the Old Testament (Yahweh).

For all his smarts, Freud clearly was way off the mark here. The celebrated Religious Studies professor Houston Smith (and many other thinkers) realize that a mere sun god differs quite dramatically from a Jewish God who creates not only the sun but the entire universe.

After Akhenaton’s death, the puppet-King Tutankhamen (Tut) at age 12-years was quickly restored polytheism in Egypt. Most likely the boy was coached, to put it nicely, by temple priests and scribes of the old polytheistic system who wanted to restore their much coveted power, prestige and privilege.

 

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Author: Earthpages.ca

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