The Greek Myths - Chapter 2, Creation Myths Summary & Analysis

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Chapter 2, Creation Myths Summary and Analysis

The Creation myths are well known in a number of religious traditions. These are part of the human approach to the question of gods. Today, physicists are among those who delve into the question of origins and who seek answers to how the universe what made, how life on planet Earth began, and finally, how human beings came about. These questions are faced by the Grecian religious traditions as well as the others. For pre-scientific people, or those who do not have the more ornate tools available to solve the riddle of origins, creation stories take the place of the physics of origins. They are clearly speculative in nature. While they tend to be a bit wild, they are nevertheless reasonable speculations within their limits. These myths have been subdivided by their type. These are listed in the Table of Contents as: 1) Pelasgian Creation Myth, 2) The Homeric and Orphic Creation Myths, 3) The Olympian Creation Myth and finally 4) Two Philosophical Creation Myths. In most, a consistent point is that the myth includes some embodiment of evident natural forces as having a great deal to do with it. The Ocean is credited with being the source of life on Earth in one creation myth. This is largely corroborated by organic chemistry and biological science. The other myths were on another level. Some told of how light broke up the Darkness and how life and order emerged from Chaos and Darkness. Another theory was that the winds did something to fertilize the land, and that this probably occurred in the dark.

Next, the author does his best to summarize the birth of the gods. As already mentioned there are numerous stories about the gods and their births. These have turned out to have some clear symbolism in political changes. One of these is that when Athena sprang forth from Zeus's head the city of Athens had come under different control. The temples to Athena remained, but Zeus, who had upgraded in status supplanted her mother Metis - the Sea, with being her primary parent. He writes of the shift from matriarchy to patriarchy, writing in terms of generations. Men never escaped the controlling influence, although one of benevolent love, of their mothers. This was only changed by a cultural shift wherein daughters left their mothers for their new husband's familial home. From such a location, the ways of his side might hold more sway, whereas when a young man goes to the home of his bride and her mother, he is apt to succumb to their combined dominance.

This section contains 437 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
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