“Are they the ones with toilet paper on them?”

With that, the Broaddus clan began our trip to the Indianapolis Museum of Art for their “To Live Forever” exhibit. The idea of mummies has always fascinated me. Seeking the answers to questions about life after death produced a veritable death culture. So much of their life and thought devoted to their burial, funeral, and tombs, seeing death as an enemy which could be beaten (and to achieve success in an afterlife) with enough preparation. Their god Osiris, with his story of death and resurrection, foreshadows the Christian story that I believe in. All to fulfill a desire for eternal life for which they are remembered some 4000 years later.

As we studied the coffins, jewelry, vessels, and saw a lot of statues and figurines with curiously smashed away noses, I had to translate what my Egyptian funeral might look like to my six year old.

“It’s the equivalent of being buried in a tomb that looked like Jesus, though daddy would prefer to be stuffed and mounted in the backyard posed like Buddy Jesus. My internal organs could be cremated and put into jewelry to be sold to friends and family, amulets to protect them on their journey. Mommy would have to be buried with me. There would be no point in her going on without me.”

“What about us?” My youngest looked up with hopeful eyes.

“You’re boys. You inherit my kingdom. Now my staff (heretofore known as Team Broaddus) would get buried with me. On the plus side, they’d get nice commemorative statues of themselves. Our cat? He gets mummified to, though that doesn’t explain why he ran away. And I’d need to have a huge tomb, filled with cups and plates, so that we can keep the party going forever.

“By the way, instead of papyrus scrolls, we’d have the entirety of my blog preserved. Of course it will be dug up one day and used as the basis of a religion. After they smash the nose of any statue of me.”

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