Ancient Egypt: Burial Customs
The Egyptians believed that each person had a ba, or soul, and a ka, an invisible twin of the deceased person, which were released from the body after death. The ba visited family and friends and the ka traveled back and forth from the body to the underworld. In order for a person to live on forever, the ba and the ka had to be able to recognize the body when they returned to it every night. The process of mummification was a crucial practice for the ancient Egyptians as it ensured the survival of a person's remains, thus promising eternal life.