The Logics of Myth The basic patterns and structures of myths in general, and creation myths in particular. Discussion on what constitutes a myth and what the rules are for its form and content.
China contains many different cultural groupings, who speak a number of different languages. Their evolution has not been entirely oral.
Much Chinese mythology is based on animism, which sees the land itself as alive. It contains many therianthropic creatures, who are both animal and human, and demonstrates the playfulness of the gods.
Strands of Chinese belief Chinese mythology has been influenced by a fear of outsiders. It has also been shaped, sometimes deliberately, by religious faiths and philosophies. Some myths even demonstrate the conflict between them, as in the story of the Monkey King, which reflects the conflict between Taoists and Buddhists.
Taoism A central quest within Taoist practices is the search for immortality - literal, physical immortality. The sense of an interplay between natural law and the abstract laws prevailing in the cosmos, is held in common by shamanism and Taoism. Taoism searched for balance within these forces and enshrined the concept that change cannot be forced, only experienced and assimilated.
Confucianism Confucius lived in the sixth century BCE, a time of considerable political unrest and feuding. He taught the virtues of order, structure and correct behaviour, which was underpinned by a rigid notion of hierarchy, involving strict A world creation myth devotion.
Confucian notions of hierarchy are evident in the bureaucratic pantheon of Chinese myths. Buddhism Buddhism was introduced to China in the first century CE and has been adapted by the Chinese so that the mythologies of the indigenous faiths and the imported are intertwined.
Early Buddhism consciously created a mythology to give meaning to its practices and beliefs. Even the advent of Buddhism is mythologized in the tale of the Emperor Ming.
His dream of a golden man who could fly led him to dispatch messengers to Afghanistan to bring back the Buddhist scriptures.
Pangu and the Creation of the World This myth is similar to many creation myths worldwide, in which the world is formed out of the body of a primal being. In the beginning there was darkness everywhere, and Chaos ruled.
Within the darkness there formed an egg, and inside the egg the giant Pangu came into being. For aeons, safely inside the egg, Pangu slept and grew. When he had grown to gigantic size he stretched his huge limbs and in so doing broke the egg. The lighter parts of the egg floated upwards to form the heavens and the denser parts sank downwards, to become the earth.
And so was formed earth and sky, Yin and Yang. Pangu saw what had happened and he was pleased. But he feared that heaven and earth might meld together again, so he placed himself between them, his head holding up the sky and his feet firmly upon the earth. Pangu continued to grow at a rate of ten feet a day for 18, years, so increasing the distance between heaven and earth, until they seemed fixed and secure, 30, miles apart.
Now exhausted, Pangu went back to sleep and never woke up. Pangu died, and his body went to make the world and all its elements. The wind and clouds were formed from his breath, his voice was thunder and lightning, his eyes became the sun and moon, his arms and his legs became the four directions of the compass and his trunk became the mountains.
His flesh turned into the soil and the trees that grow on it, his blood into the rivers that flow and his veins into paths men travel. His body hair became the grass and herbs, and his skin the same, while precious stones and minerals were formed from his bones and teeth.
His sweat became the dew and the hair of his head became the stars that trail throughout heaven. As for the parasites on his body, these became the divers races of humankind.
Although Pangu is dead, some say he is still responsible for the weather, which fluctuates according to his moods. Commentary Despite the fact that this tale is accepted as a legacy of ancient China, it is probable that is was imported from South East Asia However, it is usually ascribed to Ko Hung, Taoist writer of the fourth century CE, who also wrote on the preparation of an elixir of life, and similar subjects.
He also wrote Biographies of Spirits and Immortals, which is a prime source of mythological material. In some versions the egg is produced by a mother figure of some description, and even where this is absent, it is present by implication.world. Individual humans must support the cosmic order of nature, ma’at, so that they will be able to accompany Osiris in pursuit of immortality.
Greece and Rome In the Greek and Roman myths, as in Egypt and Mesopo-. Persian mythology developed in what is now Iran after about B.
initiativeblog.com a thousand years later, a religion known as Zoroastrianism emerged in the region. Cosmogony and creation myth are used as synonyms, yet properly speaking, cosmogony is a preferable term because it refers to the origin of the world in a neutral fashion, whereas creation myth implies a creator and something created, an implication unsuited to a number of myths that,.
This web site was completed for a high school Latin course. The asssignment was to explore some asset of classical culture and compare it . Creation myths from all around the world - their stories, meanings, and what they reveal about the human mind of the past, by Stefan Stenudd.
The Maya creation myth is the most imporant piece of literature ever produced in the western hemisphere, and is generally unknown.