Cosmic Creation Myth across Culture Paper Kristin Sheffield HUM 105 For decades myths have been told about the development of the world. Each culture has their version of how life began. These myths are centered on creation; how the earth was created, how the sky, land or the sea was created, and how humans and animals were created. These myths give cultures the security of belief. Different cultures believe differently, but these beliefs help certain cultures to continue to face problems or issues, worship, and create happiness and peace. The Enuma Elish
Apsu, the father of Sweet Waters and Tiamat, Mother of Salt Waters created 3 unruly children. The children gods were just being children, but unfortunately they were disrupting Tiamat’s peace. She grew to hate their behavior and asked Apsu to deal with them. When he tried they just ignored him. Due to their unwillingness to obey their parents Apsu’s resolution was to destroy them. Tiamat was very upset by this resolution. She told Apsu that his resolution was evil and they needed to be more understanding. Her pleas were ignored by Apsu. Apsu and Tiamat’s creations soon realized Apsu’s evil plans to destroy them.
At first they cried, and then they succumbed to their fate. However somehow they had befriended Ea, the wisest God, who eventually killed Apsu and made his co-conspirator his slave. This is a Babylonian Myth. This myth later became the reason for a national holiday in which they “emphasized the reestablishment of order”, (Rosenberg. 2006). The Creation of the Universe Ife Olorun, the god with the greatest knowledge, had a son, Obatala, who wanted to create land where Olokun, the goddess of endless waters and wild marshes ruled. Obatala went to his older brother for advice on how to proceed.
His brother’s gift was one of prophecy. He advised his brother and sent him on his way. Obatala did everything he said he’d do. He created land in the middle of marshy water; he then created plants. But he wanted more and more. While drunk on wine, he started playing with clay. He asked Olorun to “breathe life into them”, (Rosenberg. 2006). Once he sobered he realized they were imperfect. He decided never to drink that type of wine again and vowed to protect all the humans that suffered because he was drunk. He “became the protector of all those who are born deformed” (Rosenberg. 006). This myth came from Africa; the Yoruba people. They showed more emotion in their stories; Love, jealousy, sympathy and anger. As with many myths, the creators of these myths were neither male nor female. They were groups of people. The Enuma Elish myth was from the Babylonians and also the Assyrians as well. For The Creation of Universe Ife, this myth came from the Yoruba people of Africa. Together these myths share similarities about suffering and appreciation for what they have. In these myths something vital has to be restored in order to move forward.
With the Enuma Elish it was the balance between good and evil. With The Creation of Universe Ife he became the protector of imperfect people. Both The Enuma Elish and The Creation of Universe Ife had mainly water as the major element. In The Enuma Elish both parent gods were from Salt or Sweet waters. Olokun, in The Creation of Universe Ife was god of mash and wild waters. In both myths anything that disrupted peace made the waters “surge back and forth” (Rosenberg. 2006). Another similarity was humans were created. In The Enuma Elisa Ea killed Kingu by severing his blood vessels.
The first humans came from the blood. In The Creation of Universe Ife, Olorun “breathed life” into the clay for Obatala creating humans. The difference was Obatala wanted companions, but Ea’s purpose was to have the humans “serve the gods” (Rosenberg. 2006). These myths were designed to understand the unexplainable. Different cultures explained them differently. Each culture had god and goddesses. Stories of these gods and goddesses explained things to humans such as how we (humans) came to be; how the earth formed; why humans look differently from other humans or animals; etc.
Different cultures believe how things came to be differently. It depends on their faith, religion, and beliefs as to what they will believe. In all the stories that are being told, it would only take a person with influence to announce the story is true in order for other people to start believing. Once other people start believing, the proof is optional. Reference Rosenberg, D. (2006). World Mythology: An anthology of great myths and epics (3rd ed. ). Chicago, IL: McGraw-Hill.
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