42 Principles Of God Maat 2000 Years Before Ten Commandments

This topic was originally covered by a former Liberal America writer. It’s been completely rewritten as fresh content, with better sources and videos, for easier reading. Enjoy!

Maat was an Egyptian Goddess. From Tour Egypt:

Ma’at, unlike Hathor and Nephthys, seemed to be more of a concept than an actual goddess. Her name, literally, meant ‘truth’ in Egyptian. She was truth, order, balance and justice personified. She was harmony, she was what was right, she was what things should be. It was thought that if Ma’at didn’t exist, the universe would become chaos, once again!

From Wikipedia:

Maat or Ma’at was the ancient Egyptian concept of truth, balance, order, harmony, law, morality, and justice. Maat was also personified as a goddess regulating the stars, seasons, and the actions of both mortals and the deities, who set the order of the universe from chaos at the moment of creation.

From the Egyptian Book of the Dead, the 42 Principles of Maat, commonly known as the “Negative Confessions.”

  1. I have not committed sin.
  2. I have not committed robbery with violence.
  3. I have not stolen.
  4. I have not slain men or women.
  5. I have not stolen food.
  6. I have not swindled offerings.
  7. I have not stolen from God/Goddess.
  8. I have not told lies.
  9. I have not carried away food.
  10. I have not cursed.
  11. I have not closed my ears to truth.
  12. I have not committed adultery.
  13. I have not made anyone cry.
  14. I have not felt sorrow without reason.
  15. I have not assaulted anyone.
  16. I am not deceitful.
  17. I have not stolen anyone’s land.
  18. I have not been an eavesdropper.
  19. I have not falsely accused anyone.
  20. I have not been angry without reason.
  21. I have not seduced anyone’s wife.
  22. I have not polluted myself.
  23. I have not terrorized anyone.
  24. I have not disobeyed the Law.
  25. I have not been exclusively angry.
  26. I have not cursed God/Goddess.
  27. I have not behaved with violence.
  28. I have not caused disruption of peace.
  29. I have not acted hastily or without thought.
  30. I have not overstepped my boundaries of concern.
  31. I have not exaggerated my words when speaking.
  32. I have not worked evil.
  33. I have not used evil thoughts, words or deeds.
  34. I have not polluted the water.
  35. I have not spoken angrily or arrogantly.
  36. I have not cursed anyone in thought, word or deeds.
  37. I have not placed myself on a pedestal.
  38. I have not stolen what belongs to God/Goddess.
  39. I have not stolen from or disrespected the deceased.
  40. I have not taken food from a child.
  41. I have not acted with insolence.
  42. I have not destroyed property belonging to God/Goddess

It should be pointed out that these are similar to the Biblical 10 Commandments. Biblical accounts say that Moses was an Egyptian, meaning that he grew up to worship Egyptian Gods and Goddesses. It’s likely that he was familiar with Maat and the 42 Principles.

If you slightly reword some of the 42 Principles, you can see that they’re very similar to the 10 Commandments. Reworded principles in bold below.

  1. Thou shalt not kill, nor bid anyone kill.
  2. Thou shalt not commit adultery or rape.
  3. Thou shalt not avenge thyself nor burn with rage.
  4. Thou shalt not cause terror.
  5. Thou shalt not assault anyone nor cause anyone pain.
  6. Thou shalt not cause misery.
  7. Thou shalt not do any harm to man or to animals.
  8. Thou shalt not cause the shedding of tears.
  9. Thou shalt not wrong the people nor bear them any evil intent.
  10. Thou shalt not steal nor take that which does not belong to you.
  11. Thou shalt not take more than thy fair share of food.
  12. Thou shalt not damage the crops, the fields, or the trees.
  13. Thou shalt not deprive anyone of what is rightfully theirs.
  14. Thou shalt not bear false witness, nor support false allegations.
  15. Thou shalt not lie, nor speak falsely to the hurt of another.
  16. Thou shalt not use fiery words nor stir up any strife.
  17. Thou shalt not speak or act deceitfully to the hurt of another.
  18. Thou shalt not speak scornfully against others.
  19. Thou shalt not eavesdrop.
  20. Thou shalt not ignore the truth or words of righteousness.
  21. Thou shalt not judge anyone hastily or harshly.
  22. Thou shalt not disrespect sacred places.
  23. Thou shalt cause no wrong to be done to any workers or prisoners.
  24. Thou shalt not be angry without good reason.
  25. Thou shalt not hinder the flow of running water.
  26. Thou shalt not waste the running water.
  27. Thou shalt not pollute the water or the land.
  28. Thou shalt not take God’s name in vain.
  29. Thou shalt not despise nor anger God.
  30. Thou shalt not steal from God.
  31. Thou shalt not give excessive offerings nor less than what is due.
  32. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s goods.
  33. Thou shalt not steal from nor disrespect the dead.
  34. Thou shalt remember and observe the appointed holy days.
  35. Thou shalt not hold back the offerings due God.
  36. Thou shalt not interfere with sacred rites.
  37. Thou shalt not slaughter with evil intent any sacred animals.
  38. Thou shalt not act with guile or insolence.
  39. Thou shalt not be unduly proud nor act with arrogance.
  40. Thou shalt not magnify your condition beyond what is appropriate.
  41. Thou shalt do no less than your daily obligations require.
  42. Thou shalt obey the law and commit no treason.

Something to think about and interesting whether religious, agnostic, or atheist.