June 29, 2015
Cosmic Creation Myths Across Cultures
Out of nothing comes creation earth and man. These two myths are similar because each has characteristics of gods, heavenly worlds and levels leading to dark underworlds. Creators are female, male, and creatures; celestial bodies of female beginnings turning into male dominated societies. Gods slay giant creatures and use their blood and carcass makes a new worlds. Clashed together epic battles between good and evil are fought to rule kingdoms. Fire sweeps across worlds destroying everything and lighting is used to win a war.
The Norse Mythology has Nine Worlds. Asgard: was the home of the sky gods and goddess a beautiful place with huge castle and lush surroundings. Vanaheim: home of the Vanir gods were masters of sorcery and magic. They also had a talent to predict the future. Jotunheim: home of the giants. They were the bitter sworn enemies of the gods. They lived in the mountains. Niflheim: the dark land of mist and cold this was the lowest of all the nine worlds. Home of the dead ruled by Hel. It’s a nasty place were the dead humans where condemned to live in Hel in their afterlife. Muspelheim: the home of giant Surt, and world of heat, and fire (Ray, 2006).
Svartalheim home of evil little elves that caused nightmares; they lived in cracks in mountain only coming out at night. Alfheim: Home of magical elves that lived right next door to the gods. Midgard: Home of the humans and a hard world of fear from giants attacking and gods meddling. Nidavellir: world of the dwarves, little men that were excellent blacksmiths. They live underground only coming out at night (Norse-Mythology.com, 2011).
Greek mythology has three worlds. Towering in the center of the earth raises Mount Olympus. Here Olympians the major gods and the king of the gods Zues live and meet. Mount Olympus is both mountain and heaven. The underworld is hidden in the earth surrounded by five of rivers. It is the kingdom of the dead and ruled over by Hades. It is a miserable dream, no sunlight, no hope, only shadows in the dark. This world is a place where the dead know nothing except they are dead. Tartarus is situated below the earth. Tartarus is way deeper than the underworld of hades. Its known as the worst prison said to be impenetrable; a harsh world of sorrow, despair, and torcher (GreekMythology.com, 2010).
Originally there was an abyss, bounded on either side by fire and ice. The abyss was known as Home of Mists (Norse-Mythology.com, 2011). When Fire and ice merged together, their combination created a primordial giant, named Ymir, and a cow, her name Audhumbla who fed Ymir. She sustained her life by licking blocks of salty ice. As she licked the ice she uncovered Bur, who became the grandfather of the principal race of Norse gods. Ymir fathered frost giants a male and a female who he sweated from under his left arm (Gill, n.d.).
“Odin, the son of Bur's son Borr, killed Ymir” (Gill, n.d. para. 6). Blood spewing from the slain giant's body poured out like a flood killing the frost giants Ymir had produced except Bergelmir. Odin created the world using Ymir's lifeless body. Water and sea was produced from Ymir’s blood; Ymir’s skin became earth; his skull, became sky; mountains created from his bones, and trees planted from his hair (Gill, n.d.). From Ymir nine worlds were created within an everlasting lush green Ash tree and its limbs stretched over the worlds (Norse-Mythology.com, 2011).
“In the beginning there was only chaos. Then out of the void appeared Erebus, the unknowable place where death dwells, and Night. All else was empty, silent, endless, darkness. Then somehow Love was born bringing a start of order. From Love came Light and Day. Once there was Light and Day, Gaea, the earth appeared. Then Erebus slept with Night, who gave birth to Ether, the heavenly light, and to Day the earthly light. Then Night alone