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Scarab Beetle

What happens after death is a major focus in many world religions. Ancient Egyptians, for instance, believed in resurrection and immortality, following a story in which one of their gods, Osiris, was resurrected.

In accordance with this, the mummy-case was called the “chest of the living.” A scarab beetle was inserted in place of the corpse’s heart, because a scarab’s larva buries itself in the earth before emerging as a mature insect, symbolizing resurrection in Egyptian religion. A symbolic key (to open heaven) was also placed on the dead person’s breast.

Today in the Word, March 6, 1997, p. 11