KEMETIC SCIENCE

KEMETIC SCIENCE
Positive Progress Through The Benevolent Use Of Knowledge

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Education In Ancient KMT

In ancient Egypt, parents would instill in their children various educational principles, moral attitudes, and views of life from a tender age. They would receive their basic education in the bosom of the family.

This was about all of the schooling that girls would get; for boys it would be supplemented by proper training in whatever line they chose, or was chosen for them. Ancient Egyptian education covered both the general upbringing of a child and their training for a particular vocation.



The up bringing of boys was left mostly in the hands of their fathers; the mothers were responsible for the upbringing of the girls. Parents made their children familiar with their ideas about the world, with their religious outlook, with their ethical principles, with correct behavior toward others and toward the super-natural beings whom everyone believed in. They taught them about folk rituals and so forth. The educational principles of ancient Egypt were written on papyrus commonly known as the Books of Instruction.








The advice given in these "books" was designed to make sure of personal success in agreement with the needs of the state and the moral conduct of the day. It was better to tell the truth and be fair and honest than lie and do the wrong thing because the consequences would be terrible.


The Books of Instruction had rules for the well-ordered life and elements of morality that include justice, wisdom, obedience, humanity and restraint. The books mostly took the form of verses addressed by a father to his son as he stepped into his shoes or started to help his aging.


Most of these books were put together by senior officials. Many copies of these scrolls have been made since they also served as teaching texts in the schools for scribes.


In Ancient Egypt the child's world was not as clearly separated from the adults as it tends to be in modern Western society. As the years went by, childish pastimes would give way to imitations of grown-up behavior.


Children would more and more frequently be found lending a hand with the less difficult tasks and gradually developing useful skills and knowledge from their elders.

Mothers belonging to lower class families would do this job themselves. Wealthier families usually tasked servants to tend the daily needs of the children. Primary education for the children was provided at home. When they have been deemed as able by their fathers, they would serve as apprentices, accompanying their fathers as they worked to learn the trade.

Children would wake up to join their fathers out in the crop fields. Builders and other sorts of craftsmen would have their male offspring serve as helper- apprentices. The more privileged children of Ancient Egypt had the option of receiving a formal education; to eventually become a scribe, or an army officer in the royal service.

Bibliography



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Historians of philosophy; have said to begin their story with the Greeks. The Hindus, who believe that they invented philosophy, and the Chinese, who believe that they perfected it, smile at our provincialism.
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It may be that we are all mistaken;

For among the most ancient fragments left to us by the Egyptians are writings that belong, however loosely and untechnically, under the rubric of moral philosophy.



The wisdom of the Egyptians was a proverb with the Greeks, who felt themselves children beside this ancient race.


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The oldest work of philosophy known to us is the "Instructions of Ptah-hotep," which apparently goes back to 2880 B.C.—2300 years before Confucius, Socrates and Buddha.
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Ptah-hotep was Governor of Memphis
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Ptah-hotep was Governor of Memphis, and Prime Minister to the King, under the Fifth Dynasty. Retiring from office, he decided to leave to his son a manual of everlasting wisdom.


It was transcribed as an antique classic by some scholars prior to the Eighteenth Dynasty.

The Vizier begins:


"O Prince my Lord, the end of life is at hand; old age descended! upon me; feebleness cometh and childishness is renewed; he that is old lieth down in misery every day.

The eyes are small, the ears are deaf. Energy is diminished, the heart hath no rest. Command thy servant, therefore, to make over my princely authority to my son. Let me speak unto him the words of them that hearken to the counsel of the men of old time, those that once heard the gods.

I pray thee, let this thing be done. His Gracious Majesty grants the permission, advising him, however, to discourse without causing weariness advice not yet superfluous for philosophers."


Where Upon Ptah-hotep Instructs his son:


"Be not proud because thou art learned; but discourse with the ignorant man as with the sage. For no limit can be set to skill, neither is there any craftsman that possesseth full advantages.

Fair speech is more rare than the emerald that is found by slave-maidens among the pebbles. Live, therefore, in the house of kindliness, and men shall come and give gifts of themselves. Beware of making enmity by thy words.

Overstep not the truth, neither repeat that which any man, be he prince or peasant, saith in opening the heart; it is abhorrent to the soul.


If thou wouldst be a wise man, beget a son for the pleasing of the god. If he make straight his course after thine example, if he ar¬range thine affairs in due order, do all unto him that is good.

If he be heedless and trespass thy rules of conduct, and is violent; if every speech that cometh from his mouth is a vile word; then beat thou him, that his talk may be fitting. Precious to a man is the virtue of his son, and good character is a thing remembered.

Wheresoever thou goest, beware of consorting with women. If thou wouldst be wise, provide for thine house, and love thy wife that is in thine arms. Silence is more profitable to thee than abundance of speech. Consider how thou mayest be opposed by an expert that speaketh in council. It is a foolish thing to speak on every kind of work.


If thou be powerful make thyself to be honored for knowledge and for gentleness. Beware of interruption, and of answering words with heat; put it from thee; control thyself."



And Ptah-hotep concludes with Horatian pride:


"Nor shall any word that hath here been set down cease out of this land forever, but shall be made a pattern whereby princes shall speak well.

My words shall instruct a man how he shall speak; yea, he shall become as one skillful in obeying, excellent in speaking. Good fortune shall befall him; he shall be gracious until the end of his life; he shall be contented always."



This note of good cheer does not persist in Egyptian thought; age comes upon it quickly, it sours.




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Ptah: the Great Physician







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The Gift of the Nile...

The ancient Greek historian Herodotus called Egypt the “gift of the Nile.”




EM-HOTEP