In the Hebrew creation myth, we are presented with the idea, that God created the earth in seven days. It was all him, the divine creator, not faulty, but great and absolute. Ever since I was confronted with what was supposed to be my myth of creation, I was never quite happy with it. I found the idea of an earth created by someone rather than someone created by the earth to be against nature. It spoke against what I believed the earth to be. Divine, wonderful and distinctively itself.
I went on searching, for a creation myth as great as the name itself, I came cross quite a few stories, some, however, more pleasing than others. One speaks of gods failures, another of mother nature being born from the water, the last one telling us about the creator born from an egg the earth had born. 1. Mayan creation Myth: The Popol Vuh tells us, among other things, about how, in the belief of the Mayans, the earth was created. Of paramount importance seems to be, that the gods seek each other before creating the world, as they know that this is only possible to create in divine nature if they work together.
Mayans believe strongly in unity, especially while achieving things, as well as hen overcoming obstacles, for if they’re not unified, failure is set in stone. Gods created the earth by speaking of it, and it became. Animals were meant to be the original children of gods, they were meant to worship, nourish and thank. During creation they gave each animal a specific home, the deer to the forest, the birds were meant to soar the skies. It was beautiful and gods were content.
That was until they realised, that animals could not speak and therefore not worship, the Gods had failed, the quest was resumed once again. They created three versions f man before they succeeded, which is something that I find quite remarkable. First was a man made of mud, but he kept crumbling, not holding shape for very long, melting in plain sight. Second came men made of wood, but they had no heart nor had they mind they did not recognise their creator and so they were destroyed. The gods ripped them apart, sent black rain upon their head, gauged out their eyes and drowned them in a flood.
Fourth came men made of maize, they recognised their creator and they were forever thankful. The elders had created them,; knowing all, seeing all and believing all. The latter ifts got taken by the gods, as they did not want for their children to be too powerful. 2. Celtic creation Myth: While the Celts never wrote down any of their creation stories, there is one vastly famous tale of the how the population on earth came to be. They believed the earth to have existed forever, with only light and dark, sea and land.
Mother earth, Eiocha in Celtic, was born when water embraced land for the first time, a wave breaking on shore, it is said that she was born from the white foam that took shape for the first time that day. Eichoa dragged herself on land, there to then walk into a forest f oak trees, where strange plants grew upon the oak, in complete symbiosis with the trees. These plants carried white berries of which Eiocha ate, the seeds of said berries then flourishing in Eiocha’s womb, and so it came that mother earth was impregnated by nature.
As time had gone by and it was time for her to give birth, she was in so much pain that she hurled a piece of oat bark into the ocean, which resulted in the creation of giants, who then populated the waters. Cernunnos was born, he felt lonely and therefore laid with his mother creating five gods in the process of which one created man from he wood of the oak tree, one, animals of bark, one, armour of sprouts growing upon the grand oak tree, one, a harp, one, lightning, and they rejoiced, no longer were they lonely, no longer were they bored, they had each other, they were being worshipped.
Eiocha had, long before the creation of humanity, grown tired living on land, retreating back into the ocean, where she came from, there then turning into the Goddess of the ocean. The giants grew envious of the gods when their eyes fell upon their treasures of happiness, which resulted in their planning of an attack. Eiocha caught up on their intentions and, in remembrance of who she used to be, went to warn her children who managed to defend earth and all its creatures alike, Eichoa then banishing the giants to live in the waters forever, casting spells to ensure their fate was never altered. . Slavic Creation Myth: In Slavic culture, the earth had, quite similarly so in Celtic myths, existed forever, yet it was a dark, unfriendly place, hosting, but an egg containing the divine creator, nothing except for coldness and night. Due to earthly forces, the egg cracked open one day, realising the divine creator. The earth was shaped by his light, first shadow, then he created the gods of sea, land, and sky, the divine creator being God of the sun.
The dust of the shell he had shed was strewn across earth by the God of wind, the ash rooting itself to the ground and from it growing the Ash Tree, which was to forever separate earth and sky. In its crown, the gods planted avatars for themselves as, up to that point, they had merely been forces without form or shape, which a human worshipper would never have been able to understand. The other half of the dust was used to create humans and nimals alike, the gods giving them homes within the children of the Ash Tree.
The divine creator, in his last creation, took gold dust, fire, from the innermost layer of the earth to create an image of sun and moon that would not blind humanity, as he is too divine as for our eyes to behold. We now heard stories on the creation of the world as cultures had imagined them, cultures which came into existence quite a distance apart from each other, in one case, even, being separated by oceans. I will now come to speak of similarities, differences and general points of interest that caught my ttention while learning of creation stories that I was unfamiliar with.
The beginning should be made with the creator or creators. In two of these cultures, the Celtic, and the Slavic, the earth existed long before the gods did. The creators were a gift from our planet to itself. Our creators were children to our home, which seems to say that above all earth is the divine creator which is, for lack of a nicer way to express it, an extraordinarily pretty image, as it would mean that we are not puppets, it would mean that earth wanted us here, that we make her less lonely. It also means that we need not stand before God or gods for our final judgment, but before our home.
In the Mayan culture, the more traditional idea, that the creator was before the earth is very present and while I can see how this idea might seem quite sensible when trying to explain the origins of the world, I find it to be quite self-indulgent. We agree that were created in the image of our God, we are her in one way or another, therefore saying our origin, the place we come from, is not our home, but ourselves. Up to this point, I was under the impression that, all creation stories, even most eligion, was meant solely to applaud humanity and shape it in a way that would make life, as a community, easier.
Maybe, now you, can see why the image of having an earth, which gifts a creator to us, is a pretty image, for it depicts a loving earth, loving nature, a loving home. A home that wants us here, one that created, so we could be created. We are children of our homes and that our creator, similar to us, is a child of earth before he is divine and almighty. A further common similarity, wide across the spectrum in creation myths, is a grand flood. Destruction or impending destruction through water is quite a common idea.
It seems as though, quite a few cultures were threatened by how much they depended on water, but also how unpredictable it was, which could explain why, from their point of view, when water destroys, they must have angered the gods. This is yet again a scenario, where Celtic ideas and images have a rather mild picture of loving gods, treating men as their children with gentleness. The Celts believe, that the grand flood was created by the giants who were envious of the god’s happiness among the humans and the worship which they were iven.
Not once is there word of humanity being to blame for the flood that had befallen them, nor were their gods punishing or irascible ones. Protection is what they offered, from envy, sanction was in believe. Another point of interest of mine is, that the Mayan gods never intended for humans to be created, they were merely a backup after it had been proven that the animals could not speak and therefore could not worship their gods. The Mayan gods failed. Duly not, they failed over and over again. Four attempts were needed in order to create children that were capable of worshiping and care-taking.
One rarely sees gods fail at a task at hand, their often depicted as divine and without fault, their every word being true and pure and even when it’s not, their word is how it is to be. The Mayans must have been quite wise a folk, for they saw that an error is no weakness, that it strengthens, it helps growth and aids in the creation of something faulty, yet still wonderful. All other religions refuse to accept that their creator was capable of failing. Religion is a sanctuary, it’s also a reason to be gentle, to act gently. They give us uber-humans, which what and how we hould aspire to be and they bestow us with fear of judgment.
It gives us a creator to whom which we can turn to when all hope is lost when the end seems near and the fear of it is grand. The concepts of where we come from, why we are here and why horrible things happen, are just a few of the abundance of phenomena that religion tries to explain. Yet, it’s not only for explaining things, it forces people to ponder on morality, kindness and the act of sharing. It gives us a large collection of things, most of all, however, it gives us home. Divine, beautiful, balanced and we, of all beliefs, get to live in it together.