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Myth mythology and folklore

This presentation serves as introductory course for Mythology and Folklore.

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Myth mythology and folklore

  1. 1. Axis mundi: [Navel of the World] An Introduction to Mythology and Folklore Developed by: Richard M. Bañez Batangas State University, JPLPC Campus
  2. 2. Module 1: Introduction to Mythology and Folklore
  3. 3. Topic 1: The Nature of Mythology and Folklore
  4. 4. The Nature of Mythology and Folklore Philippine Lower Mythology. A painting in oil that shows creatures of the night and deities of the underworld. (Joel Magpayo Snr.)
  5. 5. The Nature of Mythology and Folklore Anituo. a Pilipino Reconstructionist religion based on the Pre-Hispanic beliefs of the people of what is now known as the Philippines prior to the arrival of Christianity and colonialism.
  6. 6. The Nature of Mythology and Folklore Mythology It is the study of myths and the myths themselves, which are stories told as symbols of fundamental truths within societies having a strong oral traditions. Folklore This includes the traditional elements of the way of life of a group of people and creative expressions developing naturally as part of this culture.
  7. 7. Review and analyze the given definitions of mythology and folklore. Briefly answer the following questions. The Nature of Mythology and Folklore • How does mythology relate to folklore? • Knowing such relationship between the two disciplines, what preparation would you make in dealing with the course Mythology and Folklore?
  8. 8. The Nature of Mythology Mythology is the study of myths. Collecting Stories  literary evidence  archaeological evidence Examining their Functions  teller or audience  society Comparing Myths  motifs  traditions Assessing Myths  significance  truth
  9. 9. The Nature of Mythology Definitions of Myth Webster  A story that is usually of unknown origin and at least partially traditional that ostensibly relates historical events usually of such description as to serve to explain some particular event, institution, or natural phenomenon. M. Reinhold, Past and Present  A myth is a story about gods, other supernatural beings, or heroes of a long past time.
  10. 10. The Nature of Mythology J. Peradotto, Classical Mythology  Myth is a cognitive structure analogous to language through which primitive people organize their experiences. H.J. Rose, A Handbook of Greek Mythology  Myths are certain products of the imagination of a people which take the form of stories.
  11. 11. The Nature of Mythology R.J. Schork, Classical Mythology, The Classic Journal  Myth is the symbolic form which is generated, shaped, and transmitted by the creative imagination of pre- and extra-logical people as they respond to and encapsulate the wealth of experience.
  12. 12. Which among the following can be considered as a myth? The Nature of Mythology Riordan’s Percy Jackson The Legend of Atlantis The Rape of Persephone Zeus The Twelve Olympians
  13. 13. The Nature of Mythology Characteristics of Myth • Mythos - authoritative speech – a traditional story • A story is a narrative with plot – It has beginning, middle, and end. – It contains characters having certain mental imprints. – It describes conflict, resolution and within a setting. – with collective importance – Myths are “traditional” tales from Lat. trado, “hand over.” – Handed over orally and transmit a culture’s sense of itself: past wisdom, memories, and models – Oral transmission will create constant changes in the myth. – Various ways of emphasizing motives and meaning for the group.
  14. 14. The Nature of Mythology Characteristics of Myth • A myth has no identifiable author. • A myth that is written down in a literary form uses a story that preceded it. • Sometimes the myths are even different in detail. • One version is not more true than another.
  15. 15. The Nature of Mythology • Types of Myths by Morford and Lenardon – Pure Myth or True Myth or Myth Proper or Divine Myth • Primitive Science or Religion – natural phenomena or the origin of things – how individuals should behave toward the gods – Saga or Legend • Primitive History – historical fact – Folk-tale or Fairy-tale • Primitive Fiction – for pleasure and amusement Morford and Lenardon’s Classical Mythology categorized myth into three types.
  16. 16. The Nature of Mythology • TYPES OF MYTHS Stars descend before Sun. The stars, represented as boys, leap into the sea before the approach of Helius in his horse- drawn chariot (the nimbus around his head is one origin of the medieval halo around the heads of saints), on an Attic wine bowl, c. 435 BC. As the goddess Nikê personifies an event, the stars and Helius personify natural forces. (© Trustees of the British Museum / Art Resource, New York)
  17. 17. The Nature of Mythology • TYPES OF MYTHS (Left) Persephone and Demeter Reunite (1891) by Frederic Leighton, (Right) Demeter Mourning Persephone (1906) by Evelyn de Morgan.(© Trustees of the British Museum / Art Resource, New York)
  18. 18. The Nature of Mythology • TYPES OF MYTHS (Top) The Trojan horse is shown in a painting by Giovanni Domenico Tiepolo, an artist of the 1700s. (Bottom) The walls of Troy. The earliest settlement at Troy can be dated to about 3000 BC, but the citadel walls shown here belong to the sixth level of occupation (Troy VI), built around 1400 BC and destroyed around 1230 BC. Constructed of neatly cut blocks of limestone that slope inward, the citadel wall had at least four gateways, two of them protected by towers. Either Troy VI or its much poorer successor Troy VIIa, destroyed about 1180 BC, could have inspired Greek legends of the Trojan War.
  19. 19. The Nature of Mythology • TYPES OF MYTHS
  20. 20. The Nature of Mythology • Types of Myths by Eliot – Primitive myths • stories about nature as told by shamans – Pagan myths • Greek and Roman’s tales of the interplay between deities and humans – Sacred myths • stories from current eastern and western religions such as Christianity and Hinduism – Scientific myths • considered as the most solemn and revered creeds of science Alexander Eliot's The Global Myths defined four types of myth.
  21. 21. The Nature of Mythology Categorize the following myths as to Eliot’s classification.
  22. 22. The Nature of Mythology • Types of Myths by Leeming – Cosmic myths • including narratives of the creation and end of the world – Theistic myths • portray the deities – Hero myths • with accounts of individuals – Place and object myths • describe places and objects David Adams Leeming's The World of Myth listed four other types.
  23. 23. The Nature of Mythology Categorize the following myths as to Leeming’s classification.
  24. 24. The Nature of Mythology • Types of Myths in The New Encyclopedia Britannica – Cosmological myths (concerned with the creation of cosmos). – Life-crisis myths (deal with the crucial events in human life; birth, puberty, marriage and death). – Hunting and agricultural myths (revolve around animals and hunt). – Myths about extra ordinary individuals (focus on extra ordinary individuals such as culture hero, trickster, god-king, and savior).
  25. 25. The Nature of Mythology • Mythology serves many purposes. – Myths grant continuity and stability to a culture. – Myths present guidelines for living. – Myths justify a culture's activities. – Myths give meaning to life. – Myths explain the unexplainable. – Myths offer role models.
  26. 26. • BIBLIOGRAPHY Leeming, David. Mythology: World of Culture. New York, USA: Newsweek Books, 1977. Morford, Mark P. and Lenardon, Robert J. Classical Mythology. New York, USA: Oxford University Press, 2003 The Nature of Mythology
  27. 27. Supplementary Topic 1: Theories Related to the Study of Mythology
  28. 28. The Nature of Mythology THEORIES RELATED TO THE STUDY OF MYTHOLOGY ANCIENT THEORIES Rationalism Etymological Theory Allegorical Theory Euhemerism MODERN THEORIES Naturalism Ritualism Diffusionism Evolutionism Freudianism Jungian archetypes Structuralism Historical-critical theory
  29. 29. The Nature of Mythology Rationalism – According to this theory, myths represent an early form of logical thinking: they all, have a logical base.
  30. 30. The Nature of Mythology Etymological Theory – This theory states that all myths derive from and can be traced back to certain words in the language.
  31. 31. The Nature of Mythology Allegorical theory – In the allegorical explanation, all myths contain hidden meanings which the narrative deliberately conceals or encodes.
  32. 32. The Nature of Mythology Euhemerism – Euhemerus, a Greek who lived from 325-275 BC, maintained that all myths arise from historical events which were merely exaggerated.
  33. 33. The Nature of Mythology Naturalism – In this hypothesis, all myths are thought to arise from an attempt to explain natural phenomena. • People who believe in this theory narrow the source of myths by tracing their origins from the worship of the sun or the moon. Hindu deity Rahu is known for causing eclipses. In Hindu mythology, Rahu is known for swallowing the sun and causing eclipses. ©bigstockphoto.com/wuttichok
  34. 34. The Nature of Mythology Ritualism – According to this theory, all myths are invented to accompany and explain religious ritual; they describe the significant events which have resulted in a particular ceremony.
  35. 35. The Nature of Mythology Diffusionism – The diffusionists maintain that all myths arose from a few major cultural centers and spread throughout the world.
  36. 36. The Nature of Mythology Evolutionism – Myth making occurs at a certain stage in the evolution of the human mind. • Myths, are therefore, an essential part of all developing societies and the similarities from one culture to the next can be explained by the relatively limited number of experiences open to such communities when myths arise.
  37. 37. The Nature of Mythology Freudianism – When Sigmund Freud, the founder of modern psychology, interpreted the dreams of his patients, he found great similarities between them and the ancient myths. – Freud believes that certain infantile are repressed. • i.e. they are eliminated from the conscious mind but continues to exist within the individual in some other form. • Sometimes these feelings emerge into consciousness under various disguises, one of which is the myth.
  38. 38. The Nature of Mythology Jungian archetypes – Carl Jung was a prominent psychologist who, while he accepted Freud’s theory about the origin of myths, did not believe that it went far in explaining the striking similarities between the motifs found in ancient stories and those of his patients. • He postulated that each of us possesses a “collective unconscious” which we inherit genetically. • It contains very general ideas, themes, or motifs which are passed along from one generation to another and are retained as part of our human inheritance.
  39. 39. The Nature of Mythology Structuralism – This theory is a fairly recent development and is closely allied with the research of linguists. – According to this theory, all human behavior, the way we eat, dress, speak, is patterned into codes which have the characteristics of language. • To understand the real meaning of myth, therefore, we must analyze it linguistically. Historical-critical theory – This theory maintains that there are a multitude of factors which influence the origin and development of myths and that no single explanation will suffice. • We must examine each story individually to see how it began and evolved.
  40. 40. Topic 2: Myth and other Allied Sciences
  41. 41. The Nature of Mythology Myth and Truth – Myth is a many-faceted personal and cultural phenomenon created to provide a reality and a unity to what is transitory and fragmented in the world. – Myth provides us with absolutes in the place of ephemeral values and with a comforting perception of the world that is necessary to make the insecurity and terror of existence bearable. – Myth in a sense is the highest reality; and the thoughtless dismissal of myth as untruth, fiction, or a lie is the most barren and misleading definition of all.
  42. 42. The Nature of Mythology Myth and Religion • Religious ceremonies and cults are based on mythology. Mircea Eliade – He defines myth as a tale satisfying the yearning of human beings for a fundamental orientation rooted in a sacred timelessness – Myth provides in the imagination a spiritual release from historical time
  43. 43. The Nature of Mythology Myth and Etiology – Myth should be interpreted narrowly as an explication of the origin of some fact or custom. This theory is called etiological, from the Greek word for cause (aitia). – The mythmaker is a kind of primitive scientist, using myths to explain facts that cannot otherwise be explained within the limits of society's knowledge at the time.
  44. 44. The Nature of Mythology Rationalism versus Metaphor, Allegory and Symbolism Max Muller – In Allegorical Nature Myths, he tells that myths are nature myths, all referring to meteorological and cosmological phenomena.
  45. 45. The Nature of Mythology Myth and Psychology Sigmund Freud – His discovery of the significance of dream- symbols led him and his followers to analyze the similarity between dreams and myths. – Myths reflect people's waking efforts to systematize the incoherent visions and impulses of their sleep world. The patterns in the imaginative world of children, savages, and neurotics are similar, and these patterns are revealed in the motifs and symbols of myth.
  46. 46. The Nature of Mythology Myth and Psychology Carl Jung – Myths contain images or archetypes, traditional expressions of collective dreams, developed over thousands of years, of symbols upon which the society as a whole has come to depend. – An archetype is a kind of dramatic abbreviation of the patterns involved in a whole story or situation, including the way it develops and how it ends; it is a behavior pattern, an inherited scheme of functioning.
  47. 47. The Nature of Mythology Myth and Society Sir J. G. Frazer – His The Golden Bough remains a pioneering monument in its attempts to link myth with ritual. It is full of comparative data on kingship and ritual, but its value is lessened by the limitations of his ritualist interpretations and by his eagerness to establish dubious analogies between myths of primitive tribes and classical myths.
  48. 48. The Nature of Mythology Jane Harrison – Prolegomena to the Study of Greek Religion and Themis, are of seminal importance. Harrison falls in the same tradition as Frazer, and many of her conclusions about comparative mythology, religion, and ritual are subject to the same critical reservations. Bronislav Malinowski – In Myth as Social Charters, he discovered close connection between myths and social institutions, which led him to explain myths not in cosmic or mysterious terms, but as charters of social customs and beliefs. Myth and Society
  49. 49. The Nature of Mythology The Structuralist Claude Lévi-Strauss – Myths are derived ultimately from the structure of the mind. And the basic structure of the mind, as of the myths it creates, is binary; that is, the mind is constantly dealing with pairs of contradictions or opposites.
  50. 50. The Nature of Mythology The Structuralist Vladimir Propp – He divided his basic structure into thirty-one functions or units of action which have been defined by others as motifemes, on the analogy of morphemes and phonemes in linguistic analysis. – These functions are constants in traditional tales: the characters may change, but the functions do not.
  51. 51. The Nature of Mythology The Structuralist Walter Burkert – He believes that the structure of traditional tales cannot be discovered without taking into account cultural and historical dimensions. – The structure of a tale is ineradicably anthropomorphic and fits the needs and expectations of both the teller and the audience.
  52. 52. • BIBLIOGRAPHY Morford, Mark P. and Lenardon, Robert J. Classical Mythology. New York, USA: Oxford University Press, 2003 The Nature of Mythology
  53. 53. Topic 3: The Emerging Approaches in Studying Myths
  54. 54. The Nature of Mythology • Trace the developing definitions of myth and mythology through identifying the contributions of various mythologists throughout time. Complete the given matrix below to showcase the various periods and contributions that led to the development of mythology. Periods Mythologists Contributions Priorities or Concerns
  55. 55. The Nature of Mythology 1. Describe the shifts in priorities that had happened in the study of myths. 2. Which concern should be prioritized? Why? 3. Which method would you adapt in analyzing myths? Why?
  56. 56. Module 2: The Nature of Myths
  58. 58. Mythic story • Expresses the relationship of man to cosmos. • is a combination of superstition and religious truth, of primitive fears and universal understanding. • Mythic story must be explored from divergent perspectives. – Cultural perspective – Historical perspective – Psychological perspective – Creative perspective – Modern perspective
  59. 59. Evolution of Myths • The story of mythology begins sometime in the distant reaches of prehistory, when man awaken to his consciousness of existence. – The nature of mythologies that produced this art is largely a matter of conjecture.
  60. 60. The Good Old Days. This may appear to be overkill (on the part of the illustrator), but recent finds indicate caveman life was no picnic. Courtesy Mark Ryan
  61. 61. Partial Solar Eclipse. Partial Solar Eclipse captured on Tuesday 4th January 2011
  62. 62. Girth. A woman’s changing girth of belly during pregnancy Deities of Mauna Kea. Poliahu is one of the Goddess of Mauna Kea, of snow, ice, and cold. She is the eldest daughter of Haumeu and Kane. She is highly revered for when the snow melts, it brings life-giving fresh water to the islands.
  63. 63. Evolution of Myths • The next step in the development of mythology occurred sometime between 7th and 4th millennium B.C. – Stationary village life resulting to urban culture • Moon earth mother religion is firmly connected with the art of soil cultivation • Hunting was supplemented by animal husbandry Triple Goddess. These three forms are: fertility goddess, aka the Maiden; the Earth Mother, aka the Mother; and the old lady, aka the Crone. These forms are believed to be based on the phases of the moon, which is why we get concepts such as the “moon” goddess.
  64. 64. Evolution of Myths – Cuneiform was invented as a form of writing. • Sumerians occupied Mesopotamia. • They invented a form of writing. – Scholars say history begins at Sumer. – Semitic people who spoke Akkadian colonized the northern part of the Tigris-Euphrates. • Founded the great city-state, Akkad. • Akkadian developed into Arabic. • King Sargon I became subject of one of the oldest transmitted hero myths.
  65. 65. Evolution of Myths – Amorites invaded Mesopotamia. • They established the first dynasty in the city of Babylon. • Amorites also known as Babylonians took over the ancient cuneiform script and Sumerian religion. – Assyrians invaded Babylon at about 1700 B.C. • Established a capital at Nineveh and an important city in Assur. • Ancient Sumerian mythology had been altered. – Myths had been found on tablets in all parts of the region. – Most complete versions are on copies commissioned in the 7th century B.C. by King Ashurbanipal at the library at Nineveh. – Epic of Gilgamesh became one of the primary vehicles for Mesopotamian Mythology. – A dominant theme in mythology was fertility.
  66. 66. Evolution of Myths – Egyptian mythology shared with Mesopotamia a special emphasis on fertility. • The dying maize-god Osiris, his sister wife Isis, and his evil bother Set were the central figures in the fertility cult. – Greek religion was incorporated with Roman’s becoming Greco-Roman mythology. • Sacrificial, ritual element can be seen in almost all Greek tragedy especially in Oedipus Rex. – Mythologies of India and Northern Europe were also considered possessing importance in the development of World Mythology.
  67. 67. MYTHO-GENETIC ZONES CONTRIBUTION TO CIVILIZATION INFLUENCE TO MYTHOLOGY AND FOLKLORE PANTHEON • MESOPOTAMIA a. Sumerians b. Akkadians c. Amorites d. Assyrians Cuneiform Dynasty Hero myths Epic of Gilgamesh • EGYPT Mummification Ra, Anubis • GREECE The Cult of Dionysus as ritual Gods and goddesses endowed with human traits Zeus • INDIA Rig Veda, Ramayana Indra • NORTHERN EUROPE Prose Eddas Odin, “All Father”  DIRECTIONS: Trace the development of myths and folklores between 7th and 4th millennium B.C. by completing the details of the given matrix below.
  68. 68. The time of destruction of the world will be foreshadowed by a loss of respect for kings and moral standards, and by an epidemic war, incest, and murder. - Prose Edda
  69. 69. • BIBLIOGRAPHY Leeming, David. Mythology: World of Culture. New York, USA: Newsweek Books, 1977.
  71. 71. Man, Myth, and History Overview • Myths are riddles which, if solved, can lead to discoveries in other fields – in history, in anthropology, in archeology. • In 1890, James Frazer’s The Golden Bough demonstrated the etiological or causal function of mythology. – Connections between; • Myth and ritual • Myth and shamanism • Myth and ancient institution • Myth and pervading religious belief • Myth in relation to natural phenomena, place names, historical incidence and human nature.
  72. 72. Man, Myth, and History Myth and ritual are intricately related. Phrygian’s Myth of Agdistis and Attis Celebration of Attis’ death and resurrection • Pine tree with effigy of Attis was brought to sanctuary. • Priests of the cult slashed their bodies while novices castrated themselves. Celebration of fertility • Symbolized by both pomegranate tree and the violets. Presence of sacred trees in rituals • Babylonian Adonis, born of a tree • Egyptian Osiris, buried in one • Norse Odin, hanged from one • Christians, Christmas Tree Causal Analysis
  73. 73. Man, Myth, and History Relationship between myth and shamanism is evident. The Bear-man Myth of Cherokee Indian Explains a tribe’s totem or sacred animal. • Bear provides food and protection. • Transforms the hunter into shaman, or medicine man of the cult through apprenticeship. Resurrection theme emerges from the human psyche. Depicts the story of a culture hero who died and came back to life. Causal Analysis
  74. 74. Man, Myth, and History Myth is used to justify existing institutions. Bodhisattva under the Boo Tree Myth of India Overcoming the temptation of the flesh through discipline, contemplation and meditation • Is same with the story of Jesus in the wilderness or Mohammed in the cave. Expresses the spirit of what cloistered orders of various faiths have always attempted to achieve in spiritual terms. • Union with the higher reality that transcends the material world. Explains monasticism and mysticism. Causal Analysis
  75. 75. Man, Myth, and History Myth is used to explain natural phenomena. The Rape of Persephone Myth of the Greeks Persephone’s fate is a symbol of lost virginity Existence of spring and summer • Demeter greets the annual return of her daughter with a replenishing of earth. Existence of fall and winter • Persephone’s annual descent to Hades marks a repetition of destruction of agriculture. Causal Analysis
  76. 76. Man, Myth, and History Myth is also used to explain the names of places. Greek Myth of Io Bosporus which means cow’s ford and the Ionian Sea were both crossed by the fleeing Io and both are named for her. Causal Analysis
  77. 77. Man, Myth, and History Myth has been used to explain aspects of human nature, or simplify entertainment. Classical Mythology (Greece) Gods and goddesses personified human types, tendencies, and activities. • Ares, the god of war, and Aphrodite, the goddess of love, become involved in a love affair. • “All is fair in love and war.” Explains common human occurrence. • Icarus disobeys the instruction of his father Daedalus which leads the former into a great danger. • Phaeton’s insubordination also leads to same fate with that of Icarus. Causal Analysis
  78. 78. Man, Myth, and History Myth is a reflection of various historical events. Historical and semi historical myths Trojan War reflects the clashes between thee people of Greece and Asia Minor for the control of Dardanelles. Noah’s Flood corresponds to the great flood that occurred in the valley of the Tigris-Euphrates – a deluge described similarly to those of the Old Testament Book of Genesis. Historical Myths • Atlantis and Tara, Theseus and the Minotaur, King Arthur and his knights of the Roundtable, Moses and his promised Land. Causal Analysis
  79. 79. Man, Myth, and History Myth can intrude upon documented history. Toltec-Aztec god- man Quetzalcoatl Quetzalcoatl himself had said he would return during a year whose symbol was “One Reed” (Ce Acatl). It was of course only coincide that Herman Cortes who was fair-skinned and came from the sea, should arrive in a One Reed year. Causal Analysis
  80. 80. Man, Myth, and History  DIRECTIONS: Design an IPO paradigm to illustrate relationship among man, myth, and history as gleaned from Filipino myths INPUT PROCESS OUTPUT
  81. 81. Man, Myth, and History • Four Functions of Myths • Comparative mythologist Joseph Campbell compartmentalized the basic functions of mythology into four classifications: – the Metaphysical – the Cosmological – the Sociological, and – the Pedagogical
  82. 82. Man, Myth, and History • The Mystical/Metaphysical Prospect – This is the religious/spiritual function: a myth is meant to make people experience the powerful feeling of the divine in their lives. – As Campbell puts it, a living mythology will waken and maintain in the individual an experience of awe, humility, and respect, in recognition of that ultimate mystery, transcending names and forms, from which, as we read in the Upanishads, words turn back.
  83. 83. Man, Myth, and History • The Cosmological Prospect – is to render a cosmology, an image of the universe. – This might include how things like time, space, and biology work and are organized • for example, how the world and its creatures came to be (and how long that took, or how they changed over time), where heaven and hell and the Garden of Eden are, and what the universe is made of.
  84. 84. Man, Myth, and History • The Social Prospect – this function of myth-telling deals with the validation and maintenance of an established order. – it can be seen as wisdom-rich models for social behavior. – Parables embedded with morals attempt to teach us how we should behave, what is model behavior, and what is unacceptable.
  85. 85. Man, Myth, and History • The Psychological Sphere – this is the aspect of mythology where stories symbolize important points in an individual's life, with the purpose of the centering and harmonization of the individual. – Freud, with his Oedipal and Electra complexes, was one who explicitly connected myths with life paths. – most stories speaks to us as individuals exactly to the extent that we see ourselves in them.
  86. 86. Man, Myth, and History TITLE ORIGIN SYNOPSIS FUNCTION  DIRECTIONS: Complete the table below by examining various local and regional myths and identifying their functions.
  87. 87. Man, Myth, and History • BIBLIOGRAPHY Campbell, Joseph. The Mythic Dimension: Selected Essays (1959–1987). Novato, California: New World Library, 2007. Leeming, David. Mythology: World of Culture. New York, USA: Newsweek Books, 1977.
  88. 88. Topic 3: INTERPRETING MYTHS
  89. 89. The Psychological Perspective Grimm’s Water of Life. A king is dying. His three sons learn from an old man that the only way to save their father is to bring him the water of life. The dying king reluctantly gives one son after the other permission to seek the water.
  90. 90. The Psychological Perspective Overview • Much disagreement exists as to how and why similar mythic motifs are found in widely separated parts of the world. – The virgin birth – The descent into the underworld – The great flood • Scholars favored two theories to explain this situation. – Theory of diffusion – emphasizes the rational or scientific aspects of mythology. – Theory of parallel development – associated with the Swiss psychiatrist C. G. Jung.
  91. 91. The Psychological Perspective Theory of Diffusion • Man’s first myths were invented in several culturally ripe mythogenetic zones and were then spread to the various parts of the world. • Myths, like artifacts and alphabets, spread by migration, trade, and conquest. • Myths are superstitions passed along from one group to other.
  92. 92. The Psychological Perspective Theory of Diffusion
  93. 93. The Psychological Perspective Theory of Parallel Development • Myths can be spontaneous psychic expression of human aims, apprehensions, and values. • Done by studying dreams over a period of time to look for patterns, for recurring images, ideas, or symbols that shed some light in the personality of the dreamer. – Much of the dream materials can be traced to recent events. • people, places, and incidents experienced in daily life naturally comprise the most common elements of dreams. – Analyst confront patterns unique to the patient in question, patterns that can be traced to heredity and environment, personal unconscious – Freudian level.
  94. 94. The Psychological Perspective Theory of Parallel Development • The analyst with an anthropological bent will proceed next to a cultural or societal layer. – Reflects the traditions and concerns of the dreamers' class or group. • Analyst will look further to find motifs or symbols that seem to have no particular source in the dreamer’s conscious experience but recur with frequency in his dreams. – These symbols or the impulses expressed by them, are inherited from the human past and reserved in the deepest reaches of the mind – collective unconscious or racial memory.
  95. 95. The Psychological Perspective Theory of Parallel Development • The first level attempts to discern concerns peculiar to the time the myths was told in its present form. • Mythologist finds patterns that express the culture of the society as a whole. • He discovers archetypes that transcend the particular culture. • Mythologist compare myths to expose the inner nature of the human race.
  96. 96. The Psychological Perspective Theory of Parallel Development
  97. 97. The Psychological Perspective From J.R.R. Tolkien, On Fairy Stories “The incarnate mind, the tongue, and the tale are in our world coeval.” • Independent invention – made by a story maker • Diffusion – borrowing in space • Inheritance – borrowing in time
  98. 98. The Psychological Perspective
  99. 99. The Psychological Perspective Case Study: Dream Interpretation Dream account of an American youth to the author of a syndicated newspaper feature
  100. 100. The Psychological Perspective Freud and Jung theorized four-fold hierarchy model in interpreting dreams. 1. The conscious mind – governed by ego, the rational self- aware aspect of the mind. 2. The preconscious contains materials accessible to the conscious mind upon demand, such as facts, memories, ideas and motives. 3. The personal unconscious stores half-forgotten memories, represses traumas and emotions, and unacknowledged motives and urges. 4. The collective unconscious is a genetically inherited level of the mind containing what Jung called the Vast historical storehouse of the human race, • a mental reservoir of ideas, symbols, themes and archetypes that form the raw material of many of the world’s myths, legends and religious systems.
  101. 101. The Psychological Perspective Three main classes of dreaming by Freud and Jung. 1. Level 1 is the most superficial class, drawing primarily upon material in the precious mind. • Dreams from this level tend to revolve around the events of the day, and opinion is divided as to whether or not they are particularly meaningful. 2. Level 2 deals with the material from the personal unconscious, using predominantly symbolic language, much of it specific to the dreamer. 3. Level 3 contains what Jung called grand dreams. These deal with material from the collective unconscious, operating only in symbols and archetypes. 4. Cosmic Dreams are characterized by extremely important and extra ordinary dreams that is truly awe- inspiring and occurs rarely, once in a lifetime. • They are ones in which the qualities of the universe itself are the major themes. • they are an attempt by the unconscious to make sense of the vastness of the universe and our place within it.
  102. 102. The Psychological Perspective I dreamed that I was reshingling our roof. Suddenly I heard my father's voice on the ground below, calling to me. I turned suddenly to hear him better, and, as I did so, the hammer slipped out of my hands, and slid down the sloping roof, and disappeared over the edge. I heard a heavy thud, as of a body falling. Terribly frightened, I climbed down the ladder to the ground. There was my father lying dead on the ground, with blood all over his head. I was brokenhearted, and began calling my mother, in the midst of my sobs. She came out of the house, and put her arms around me.
  103. 103. The Psychological Perspective “Never mind, son, it was all an accident,” she said. “I know you will take care of me, even if he is gone.” As she was kissing me, I woke up. I am the eldest child in our family and am twenty-three years old. I have been separated from my wife for a year; somehow, we could not get along together. I love both my parents dearly, and have never had any trouble with my father, except that he insisted that I go back and live with my wife, and I couldn't be happy with her. And I never will.
  104. 104. The Psychological Perspective • BIBLIOGRAPHY Fontana, David. The Secret Language of Dreams: A Visual Key to Dreams and Their Meaning. San Francisco, USA: Chronicle Books.1994. Leeming, David. Mythology: World of Culture. New York, USA: Newsweek Books, 1977. O'Connell, Mark. The Ultimate Illustrated Guide to Dreams, Signs & Symbols. China: JG Press, 2008. Van de Castle, Robert L. Our Dreaming Mind. Denton, Texas, United States of America: Random House Publishing Group, 1995.
  105. 105. Topic 4: THE STRUCTURE OF MYTHS
  106. 106. The Hero with a Thousand Faces Overview • There are several types of culture hero. – One who represents the shared values of an entire nation – national heroes. • Aeneas symbolized the Romans’ deviation from what they considered corrupt Greek traditions. – One who represents religion. • Jesus of Nazareth and Gautama Buddha – One who combines religious and national impulses. • Joan of Arc and Mao Tse-tung
  107. 107. The Hero with a Thousand Faces Overview • The true culture hero is a medium for language of myth. – The wonderful song of the soul’s high adventure, Joseph Campbell. • A hero repeatedly tests himself in a series of adventure that also serve to establish his identity. • These adventures may be national, religious, cultural, or ideological, but at their deepest level, they are also psychological.
  108. 108. The Hero with a Thousand Faces Types of Heroes
  109. 109. The Hero with a Thousand Faces Types of Heroes • Hero. In mythology a mighty warrior who is often the son of a god or king and goes on an epic quest • Hero. (2) Main character of a story who often displays admirable qualities • Anti-hero. Main character of a story who is flawed in some way and often does not display admirable qualities • Tragic hero. Main character of a tragedy whose tragic flaw leads to his or her destruction • Byronic hero. Rebellious main character who has a troubled past and indulges in self-destructive behaviors that threaten to doom him or her.
  110. 110. The Hero with a Thousand Faces • The Structure of a Monomyth by Joseph Campbell –Joseph Campbell defined a classic sequence of actions that are found in many stories. –It is also known as the Monomyth, a term Campbell coined from James Joyce's Finnigan's Wake.
  111. 111. The Hero with a Thousand Faces THE STRUCTURE OF A MONOMYTH
  112. 112. The Hero with a Thousand Faces • I. Separation / Departure – The first section of the story is about the separation of the hero from the normal world. Separation has symbolic echo of infant transition away from the mother and so has a scary feel to it. • I.1 The Call to Adventure • I.2 Refusal of the Call or Acceptance of the Call • I.3 Supernatural Aid • I.4 Crossing of the First Threshold • I.5 Entering the Belly of the Whale
  113. 113. The Hero with a Thousand Faces
  114. 114. The Hero with a Thousand Faces • II. Initiation – In the main part of the story the hero is initiated into true heroic stature by various trials and rites. Through daring and battle, the true character emerges. • II.1 Road of Trials • II.2 The Meeting with the Goddess • II.3 Woman as Temptress • II.4 Atonement with the Father • II.5 Apotheosis • II.6 The Ultimate Boon
  115. 115. The Hero with a Thousand Faces • III. Return – After initiation the hero can cleansed and return in triumph to deserved recognition, although this in itself may not be without its trials and tribulations. • III.1 Refusal of the Return • III.2 Magic Flight • III.3 Rescue From Without • III.4 Crossing of the Return Threshold • III.5 Master of the Two Worlds • III.6 Freedom to Live
  116. 116. The Hero with a Thousand Faces • Another eight-step formulation was given by David Adams Leeming in his book, Mythology: The Voyage of the Hero: 1. Miraculous conception and birth 2. Initiation of the hero-child 3. Withdrawal from family or community for meditation and preparation 4. Trial and Quest 5. Death 6. Descent into the underworld 7. Resurrection and rebirth 8. Ascension, apotheosis, and atonement
  117. 117. The Hero with a Thousand Faces Miraculous conception and birth The modern "great mother," appropriately oversized, points as madonnas of the past do to the child miraculously visible in a mandalic womb. By so doing she reminds us that the child hero—the Self within—can provide meaningful focus to the otherwise disparate activities of a distorted world. [Marc Chagall, Maternity (1913), Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, on loan from Netherlands Institute for Cultural Heritage. © 1998 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/ADAGP, Paris.]
  118. 118. The Hero with a Thousand Faces Initiation of the hero-child The sense of wonder and of initiation into mysterious realities of form pervades this painting. The serpentlike arrow at the base speaks intrusively of the dangers implicit in the paradise of early awakening. [Paul Klee, A Young Lady's Adventure (1922), The Tate Gallery, London/Art Resource, NY. Reproduced with permission.]
  119. 119. The Hero with a Thousand Faces Withdrawal from family or community for meditation and preparation In this modern "Angelus" the contemplative in isolation, like the hero of old in his stage of withdrawal to cave or mountain, is faced with a vision of the essence of her own inner reality. [Salvador Dali, Portrait of Gala (L'Angelus de Gala). 1935. Oil on wood, 12 3/4 x 10 1/2 in. (32.4 x 26.7 cm). The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Gift of Abby Aldrich Rockefeller. Photograph © 1998 The Museum of Modern Art, New York.
  120. 120. The Hero with a Thousand Faces Trial and Quest Perhaps the best known of modern paintings, Picasso's Guernica conveys as forcefully as the stories of the labors of Hercules or the trials of the Buddha the heroic agon and adventure that is the search for wholeness in a world threatened by chaos. [Pablo Picasso, Guernica (1937), oil on canvas, 11 ft., 5 1/2 in. x 25 ft., 5 3/4 in. Reproduced with permission of Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid. © 1998 Estate of Pablo Picasso/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.]
  121. 121. The Hero with a Thousand Faces Death Crucifix: The cross and the X here are symbolic, as they always have been, of the hero's crossing from one sphere of existence to another—of his confronting that which takes life but in so doing defines it. [Thomas Chimes, Crucifix (1961), oil on canvas, 36 x 36in (91.5 x 91.5 cm). The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Larry Aldrich Foundation Fund. Photograph © 1998 The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Reproduced with permission.]
  122. 122. The Hero with a Thousand Faces Descent into the underworld The Anxious Journey: A symbol of the energies of our society, the locomotive wanders among classical forms, perhaps searching like the hero of old for destiny and meaning among shades of the past. [Giorgio de Chirico, The Anxious Journey (1913), Oil on canvas, 29 1/4 x 42 in. (74.3 x 106.7 cm). The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Acquired through the Lillie P. Bliss Bequest. Photograph © 1998 The Museum of Modern Art, New York.]
  123. 123. The Hero with a Thousand Faces Resurrection and rebirth Spiraling out of the crescent moon—usually a female symbol—is a seed of life. The painting is a joyful—even playful—celebration of the eternal cycle. [Joan Miro, Landscape; The Hare (1927), oil on canvas, 51 x 76 A in. Collection, The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York. Photo: David Heald.]
  124. 124. The Hero with a Thousand Faces Ascension, apotheosis, and atonement Mandalas, general symmetry, a sense of strangely meaningful connections, and upward movement create a sense of apotheosis and wholeness that is the heroic life or human adventure. [Max Ernst, Men Shall Know Nothing of This (1923), The Tate Gallery, London/Art Resource, N.Y. Reproduced with permission.]
  125. 125. He who follows the hero gains a true self through the loss of the illusion of personal and local self. The beginning path to psychic wholeness, then, is the recognition that the hero’s voyage is potentially of Everyman. - David Adams Leeming
  126. 126. The Hero with a Thousand Faces • BIBLIOGRAPHY Campbell, Joseph with Moyers, Bill. The Power of Myth. Ed. Betty Sue Flowers. United States of America: Bantam Doubleday Publishing Group Inc., 1988. Campbell, Joseph. The Hero with a Thousand Faces. Novato, California: New World Library, 2008. Johnson, Paul. Heroes: From Alexander the Great and Julius Caesar to Churchill and De Gaulle. Hammersmith, London: HarperCollins Publishers, 2007. Leeming, David. Mythology: World of Culture. New York, USA: Newsweek Books, 1977.
  127. 127. Topic 5: THE MYTHMAKER
  128. 128. The Mythmakers The Mythmaking Process • Source of idea – Who put the Word into words? – Psyche • Articulator – gives voice to the human soul through language – wild-eyed poet, singer of tales
  129. 129. The Mythmakers The Mythmaking Process in Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s Kubla Khan Samuel Taylor Coleridge Mental State  an experience  reading passage in an old book Physical State  dose of opium SLEEP CONCEPTUALIZATION impression that he was composing some three hundred lines of poetry AWAKE PRODUCTION wrote lines of poetry ARRIVAL OF A VISITOR INTERRUPTION his vision was lost Kubla Khan
  130. 130. The Mythmakers The Mythmaking Process of Shaman SHAMAN Mental State  an experience  solitude Physical State  fasting  hunger  die a little CONCEPTUALIZATION A guardian spirit appeared and gave him the power to see vision PRODUCTION Uttered trance-induced song Most Potent Medicine WORD through a trance-induced song
  131. 131. The Mythmakers Shamanism in Tlingit Indian folktale • Shamanic elements – Two sets of paraphernalia – Voyage to the underworld – Ritual actions – Retrieval of a lost person – Instruction by guardian spirits – Miraculous return from apparent death
  132. 132. The Mythmakers “All true poetry is based on a mythic language that is made up of a few formulae .” (Robert Graves, The White Goddess) “The emergence of basic myth has not always been dependent on culture heroes, religion, epic poems, or what we usually think of as myths.” (David Adams Leeming, Mythology: A world of Culture)
  133. 133. The Mythmakers Motifs in Bother Grimm's Water of Life – three sons - first is evil – second son thinks of personal gain – instructions as allusions to famous folk-fairy tales – vulnerability of human – undergoing a period of ritual withdrawal
  134. 134. The Mythmakers “I go to encounter for the millionth time the reality of experience and to forge in the smithy of my soul the uncreated conscience of my race.” (Stephen Dedalus in James Joyce’s A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man)
  135. 135. The Mythmakers Shamanism • It is an ancient method of spiritual communication that is used for spiritual and physical healing as well as for personal growth. • Shamanic practices exist in many tribal cultures world-wide and are experiencing a renaissance in urban cultures. • In shamanism, one enters an altered mental state— typically by using drums or rattles to create a sound field that changes consciousness. • The altered state, called a shamanic journey, is used to gain help and wisdom. • In the journey the shaman encounters helping spirits which provide help and guidance when properly approached.
  136. 136. The Mythmakers Fundamental Elements of Shamanism • While shamanic practices vary widely, they also contain a unifying set of basic assumptions: – Everything that exists is alive. – Everything can be communicated with if approached properly. – There are other realities available to us in which we can journey. – The residents called spirits of these other realities are sympathetic, for the most part, to humanity and want to be helpful, if asked. – Every human being has helping spirits, even if they are not aware of it.
  137. 137. The Mythmakers Fundamental Elements of Shamanism • While shamanic practices vary widely, they also contain a unifying set of basic assumptions: – True power involves a proper relationship to these other realities. – Illness includes an element of power-loss or soul-loss. – Illness can also occur because of power-intrusion in which vagrant spirits come to reside uninvited in the body. – Shamanism deals with the spiritual aspects of health. – The realms that can be journeyed to have their own topography including a Lower, Middle, and Upper world.
  138. 138. The Mythmakers Some Shamanic Concepts Defined – Core Shamanism: the fundamental defining elements of shamanistic belief and practice as they occur almost universally across cultures. – Ecstasy: The experience of being outside one's self, often joyously. – Lower World: One of the shamanic realities. To enter it involves an experience of going down, often through a tunnel. It has many levels. In it reside Power Animals and other healing and instructive forces. It is not a negative place like Hell. – Middle World: Ordinary reality experienced shamanically and therefore perceived in the spiritual sense.
  139. 139. The Mythmakers Some Shamanic Concepts Defined – Upper World: To enter the upper world one journeys up from the Middle World. It can be a positive place but is not synonymous with Heaven. – Non Ordinary Reality: the reality that the shaman journeys into. It does not follow the rules of Aristotelian logic. – Ordinary reality: Reality as we experience it in our usual state of awareness. It adheres to the rules of logic. – Power: Fullness of life and immunity against negative spiritual influences. It is gained by right relationship with the other realms.
  140. 140. The Mythmakers Some Shamanic Concepts Defined – Power Animal: A guardian spirit or familiar manifesting itself as an animal who has compassion for a person and agrees to act as a guide, advisor, and healer. – Shaman: A person who contacts other realities for healing and wisdom in the service of his or her community. – Shamanic Drum: The sound of the shamanic drum is the “horse” on which the shaman rides to the other realms. It is typically a one-headed hand drum, beaten in a monotonous rhythm with a soft mallet. The drum contains much power and symbolism.
  141. 141. The Mythmakers Some Shamanic Concepts Defined – Shamanic Rattle: Rattles are used for communicating with spirits and for healing work. – Shamanic State of Consciousness: An altered state of consciousness, not well understood neurologically, which provides the ecstatic experience of journeying to other realities which have a consistency and coherence of their own. It is attained most commonly through the use of a Sonic Driver or in some cultures through the use of mind-altering herbs.
  142. 142. The Mythmakers Some Shamanic Concepts Defined – Shamanism: The belief system and practices of those who use an altered state of consciousness in contacting other realities. It is a method of gaining knowledge and is not in itself a religion, though the two tend to merge in tribal cultures. – Sonic Driver: Use of repetitive sound to alter consciousness, most typically with drums and rattles, but also through other repetitious sounds. – World Tree: The axis mundi, the interconnection between the worlds, used by some as a route in journeying to gain access to the other worlds.
  143. 143. TheMythmakers • BIBLIOGRAPHY Campbell, Joseph with Moyers, Bill. The Power of Myth. Ed. Betty Sue Flowers. United States of America: Bantam Doubleday Publishing Group Inc., 1988. Leeming, David. Mythology: World of Culture. New York, USA: Newsweek Books, 1977. Shamanic Art Studio. Shamanism. Retrieved November 7, 2011 available at http://www.shamanicartsstudio.com/Shamanism.h tm
  144. 144. Module 8: Methodologies in Understanding Myths and Folktales
  145. 145. Methodologies in Understanding Myths and Folktales Overview • The myth critic is concerned to seek out those mysterious elements that inform certain literary works and that elicit dramatic and universal human reactions. • He examines how certain works of literature project an image of reality to which readers give perennial responses. • A critic may study in depth the archetypes or archetypal patterns that the writer has drawn from the structure of his masterpiece which influences the reader. • Mythology tends to be speculative and philosophical; its affinities are with religion, anthropology, and cultural history.
  146. 146. Methodologies in Understanding Myths and Folktales Overview • Myths are the symbolic projections of a people's hopes, values, fears, and aspirations. • To analyze a myth is to analyze it from the viewpoint of some theory. • Theories need myths as much as myths need theories. If theories illuminate myths, myths confirm theories. • A theory is to show how well it works when its tenets are assumed – this on the grounds that the theory must be either false or limited if it turns out not to work.
  147. 147. Methodologies in Understanding Myths and Folktales Methodologies in Understanding Myths and Folktales 1. Man and His Symbols by Carl Gustav Jung 2. The Structural Study of Myth by Claude Levi-Strauss 3. Morphology of The Folk Tale by Vladímir Propp
  148. 148. Methodologies in Understanding Myths and Folktales Man and His Symbols by Carl Gustav Jung – According to Jung, heroism involves, in addition, relations with the unconscious. – Jungians at once analyze all kinds of myths, not just hero myths, and interpret other kinds heroically. » Creation myths, for example, symbolize the creation of consciousness out of the unconscious. – For Jung, the unconscious is inherited rather than created and includes far more than repressed instincts. – The goal of the uniquely Jungian second half of life is likewise consciousness, but now consciousness of the Jungian unconscious rather than of the external world.
  149. 149. Methodologies in Understanding Myths and Folktales The Structural Study of Myth by Claude Levi-Strauss – Claude Lévi-Strauss’ contribution to the study of myth is the invention of a structuralist approach to myth. – Humans as argued by Lévi-Strauss, think in the form of classifications, specifically pairs of oppositions, and project them onto the world.
  150. 150. Methodologies in Understanding Myths and Folktales The Structural Study of Myth by Claude Levi-Strauss – For Lévi-Strauss, the distinctiveness of myth among these phenomena is threefold. » First, to be able to organize even myths into sets of oppositions would be to prove irrefutably that order is inherent in all cultural phenomena and that the mind must therefore underlie it. » Second, myth, together with totemism, is the only exclusively primitive phenomenon among the ones that Lévi-Strauss considers. To prove that it is orderly would prove that its creator is orderly, hence logical and intellectual, as well. » Third and most important, myth alone not only expresses oppositions, which are equivalent to contradictions, but also resolves them for the purpose of myth is to provide a logical model capable of overcoming a contradiction.
  151. 151. Methodologies in Understanding Myths and Folktales Morphology of The Folk Tale by Vladímir Propp – Notably, the Russian folklorist Vladimir Propp wrote on the common plot which described most myths as literature, – Propp deciphers in Russian fairy tales is his structure. – Propp’s structure remains on the narrative level and is therefore no different from the kind of ‘structure’ found by Otto Rank, Joseph Campbell, and Lord Raglan.
  152. 152. Methodologies in Understanding Myths and Folktales Activity:  Spearhead a seminar/workshop on the methodologies in understanding myths. • The class will conceptualize a theme for the seminar/workshop and design a programme for event. • The class will be divided into three groups. Each group will deal with each of the following topics; a. Man and His Symbols by Carl Gustav Jung b. The Structural Study of Myth by Claude Levi-Strauss c. Morphology of The Folk Tale by Vladímir Propp.
  153. 153. Methodologies in Understanding Myths and Folktales Activity: • Each group shall prepare a presentation on assigned topic. a. The Presentation shall include the following.  An introduction which will serve as an overview of the chosen method dealing with the proponent, history, and the general concepts.  Methodology which will expound on the processes and procedures in understanding myths using the chosen method.  Praxis which will demonstrate how theories of the chosen method are put into application.  Pedagogical Implications which will give emphasis on the application of the theories being discussed in teaching English and Literature. • Each group shall also provide copy of their lecture to the audience as well as the supplementary readings used in the session. • Evaluation of the performance of each group will be based on the rubrics prepared by the instructor in the subject.
  154. 154. Mythological and Archetypal Approaches • BIBLIOGRAPHY Guerin, Wilfred L. Labor, Earle. Morgan, Lee. and Reesman, Ieanne C. A Handboook of Critical Approaches to Literature. 5th ed. Oxford, New York: Oxford University Press, 2005.
  155. 155. Module 3: Myths of Creation
  156. 156. Creation Myths I. The Birth of Order • Creation myths offer a cosmogony, meaning “the birth of order.” • From the Greek words • cosmos means world • gignesthai means to be born • Cosmogony can be distinguished from cosmology, which studies the universe at large and throughout its existence, and which technically does not inquire directly into the source of its origins.
  157. 157. Creation Myths
  158. 158. Creation Myths II. Classifying Cosmogonies • Usually the most important myth in a culture because it becomes the exemplary model for all other myths • Cosmogonies relate how the entire world came into being • Some narratives relate the creation of the world from nothing (creation ex nihilo) – a. Hebrew – Book of Genesis – b. Egyptian, Ptah creates through speech – c. Australian, – d. Greek, Hesiod’s Theogony begins with great abyss, void – e. Mayan, Popul Vu
  159. 159. Creation Myths II. Classifying Cosmogonies • Another type of cosmogonic myth is known as the earth-diver creation story • A divinity typically sends a waterfowl or amphibious creature to dive to the bottom of the primordial waters and bring up mud from which the world grows • Other cosmogonic myths describe creation as emerging from the lower worlds • Navajo and Hope tell of a progression upwards from lower worlds resulting in the final progression into the world of humanity • A Polynesian myth tell of various layers within a coconut shell
  160. 160. Creation Myths II. Classifying Cosmogonies • Other cosmogonic myths describe creation emerging from a world or cosmic egg • Myths from Africa, China, India, South Pacific, Greece and Japan speak of creation symbolized as breaking forth from a fertile cosmic egg • The Dogon people of West Africa describe this egg as the “placenta of the world”
  161. 161. Creation Myths II. Classifying Cosmogonies • Yet another type of cosmogonic myth is the world- parent myth • The Enuma Elish is the creation story of the Babylonians; Apsu and Tiamat bear offspring who later oppose their parents; the result of this confrontation is the creation of the world (more on this story later) – This myth (as well as others like it) are also associated with creation from dismemberment • Other world-parent myths come from the Egyptians, Zuni, and Polynesians
  162. 162. Creation Myths II. Classifying Cosmogonies • Another approach from those listed above: Van Over’s Six Basic Themes 1. Idea of a primeval abyss 2. Originator(s) awakened or eternally existing in this abyss 3. Originator(s) brood over the water 4. Theme of the cosmic egg or embryo 5. Creation from sacred sound or spoken word 6. Theme of creation from the death of and body parts of the primeval god
  163. 163. Creation Myths II. Classifying Cosmogonies • Yet another approach: Maclagan’s 8 themes 1. Inner and outer 2. Something from nothing 3. Conjugation of opposites 4. World order and the order of the worlds 5. Descent and ascent 6. Earth body and sacrifice 7. Death, time, and the elements
  164. 164. Creation Myths II. Classifying Cosmogonies • Lastly, Weigle’s nine-part typology 1. Accretion or conjunction 2. Secretion 3. Sacrifice 4. Division or conjugation 5. Earth-diver 6. Emergence 7. Two creators 8. Deus faber 9. Ex nihilo
  165. 165. Creation Myths III. Types of Creation Myth • Accretion or Conjunction Stories – These stories depict the birth of order as resulting from the mingling or layering of the primal elements (e.g., earth, wind, fire, water). – accretion is a process in which the size of something gradually increases by steady addition of smaller parts • e.g., droplets of water vapor form clouds • e.g., an increase in land mass through accumulation of dirt, rock and sand
  166. 166. Creation Myths III. Types of Creation Myth • Secretion Stories – This pattern involves the cosmos resulting from divine emissions such as vomit, sweat, urination, defecation, masturbation, web-spinning and parthenogenesis (asexual reproduction). 1. Typically the secretions result in human forms but some stories include secretions resulting in non- human forms (seas, lands, animals, plants, etc.)
  167. 167. Creation Myths III. Types of Creation Myth • Secretion Stories 2. Example of non-human formations is found in the story of Ku’urkil, the Chuckchee’s “self-formed” Father Raven, defecates and urinates, thus creating the earth and various bodies of water 3. More common are the secretions resulting in the creation of conscious beings resembling the primeval creator intellectually and spiritually.
  168. 168. Creation Myths III. Types of Creation Myth • Sacrifice Stories – In some cosmogonies, the creator god sacrifices him or herself or someone else in order to complete the work of creation. • Division or Consummation Stories – Weigle says that these types of myths are “usually associated with discriminating primal matter or a cosmogonic egg with the consummated marriage of earth and sky.” – The consummation motif shares with cosmogonic egg myths the knowledge that tiny germs contain within them astonishing potential for organized growth.
  169. 169. Creation Myths III. Types of Creation Myth • Earth-Diver Stories – In Weigle’s fifth type of creation myth, a god or his agent dives to the bottom of the primordial deep, from which most cosmogonies begin, and returns with a few grains of sand or a bit of mud from which the earth and the rest of the cosmos eventually arise. Some stories already mentioned include this typology. • Emergence Stories – Emergence myths typically depict the first people or first person as journeying from an original, cramped world or womb into this world. Many Native American myths take this form.
  170. 170. Creation Myths III. Types of Creation Myth • Two Creators – This type of cosmogony, very common among African and Native American traditions, depicts two gods creating the world through cooperation or competition. – Frequently, one god is more active or more human than the other. • Deus Faber – This term means the Maker God, the quintessential architect, artisan, or craftsperson. – Deus faber stories celebrate the astonishing intricacy and cleverness of creation.
  171. 171. Creation Myths III. Types of Creation Myth • Ex Nihilo = “out of nothing” – A Latin term, literally means “from nothingness” or “from spirit” – Used to describe cosmogonies in which the creator brings the world into being through speech, breath, dream, thought, or laughter (Weigle)
  172. 172. Creation Myths IV. Reading Creation Myths • Keep in mind, the categories through which we have discussed creation myths need not be strictly distinct and unrelated. Many myths exhibit multiple characteristics. • Mythologist, once they understand a variety of types, often ask more probing questions: – Why do certain cultures depict the creation through one chosen type rather than another? – What is the culture ultimately trying to say about itself? – Do any categories emphasize some values over other values?
  173. 173. Creation Myths IV. Reading Creation Myths – Do their environments influence the moods or tones of their stories? – What kind of relationship is depicted between creators and humans and does this speak to a culture’s contemporary understanding of divine beings? – What symbols are used and what remains significant about these symbols in more contemporary descendents?
  174. 174. Creation Myths Hebrew Book of Genesis
  175. 175. Creation Myths Babylonian Enuma elish
  176. 176. Creation Myths Egyptian Book of Overthrowing Apopis
  177. 177. Creation Myths Hesiod's Theogony
  178. 178. Creation Myths Hindu’s Rig Veda
  179. 179. Creation Myths Japanese Kojiki, “Record of Ancient Things”
  180. 180. Creation Myths Norse Voluspa from the Poetic Edda
  181. 181. Creation Myths Finnish Kalevala
  182. 182. Creation Myths Quiche Maya’s Popol Vuh
  183. 183. Creation Myths • BIBLIOGRAPHY Leonard, Scott A. and McClure, Michael. Myth and Knowing: An Introduction to World Mythology. United States of America: McGraw-Hill, 2003.