Can you become immortal? Did the ancients find a way to do so? If we look to the past we can find that in a form they did. If we look to the past we can see that there are some beliefs that if a person’s name is remembered and spoken about then they have found a way to become immortal.
Let’s start with the ancient beliefs in general. How do we know so much about them? How do we know that they existed? We have learned from the people who talked about them. We have the legends that were told more and more over the years. The spelling of the names are from the way that the sites list them. They aren’t misspellings.
If we look at a common story, the Spartan 300, how do we know about them. We know about the legend of the 300 through the stories of Herodotus (c. 484 -c.425 BC)1 Leonidas the 1st lived from around 530 BC -480 BC. He is known for the legend of the last stand against the Persian invaders. He was the son of the Spartan King Anaxandrides and was said to be the descended from the Greek cult hero Heracles. 2
The Spartans had a strange way of looking at things. Leonidas was the second child born to the king’s first wife. His second wife (contrary to the Spartan custom) had his first born male son, Cleomenes became the heir to the throne. However, the fates were ironic. Cleomenes was psychologically impaired and possibly mentally handicapped. When their father died, he took the throne instead of Dorieus who was Leonidas’s older brother. Unable to live under his brother’s rule, Dorieus set sail for distant lands and ended up passing away.2
When his brother Cleomenes died, he had no male heir so Leonidas who had been the commander of the Spartan army. The Spartan king was expected to be the first in the march and the last to retreat in times of war.
The reason we know about the Spartan King Leonidas was the fact that King Xerxes decided to invade Greece with the Persian Army.
When we think of Ancient Egypt we think of the pyramids of Giza. But there is more that we need to think about, how do we know about the pharaohs? How do we know about what they did and when they ruled? The legends that we know are from the writings of the past including the hieroglyphs.
The most common way that we know if it is through the tombs of the pharaohs. When the Ancient Egyptians died, they were mummified and the tombs of the pharaohs were filled with the items that they would need in the afterlife. They believed that you would need food, all your earthly possessions and your body for the afterlife. They also believed that you needed a series of spells to get passed the dangers of getting to the afterlife.