Destroy my desires, eradicate my ideals, show me something better, and I will follow you.
- Fyodor Dostoevsky, Notes from the Underground (via mashamorevna)
Is there anything about mythology that is really weird or interesting? Well, it's all very interesting, but I mean as in hidden things. Like, maybe evidence of ALIENS or maybe the cameo Noah had in Gilgamesh. Things like that. Have any awesome insights?
Off the top of my head, it’s that everything is playing off everything else.
The “Noah cameo” in the epic of Gilgamesh, for example, is more accurately thought of the other way ‘round. Utnapishtim makes a cameo in the Hebrew Bible, if anything. Buddhism, Hinduism, Egyptian myth, Sumerian myth—the list goes on a long time—they’ve all got deluge myths.
We pass these stories on generation to generation, and use their images in our daily conversations. The stories grow and move with the tellers, and we get arbitrarily different pantheons and religions.
In the same way, images and specific stories appearing at different points and times throughout the history of the world are pointed to by some as evidence of extra terrestrial interference in the lives of our ancestors.
I mean, yeah, sure. It’s possible, but it’s not likely. Wouldn’t it be far more plausible that, rather than an alien race telling the same thing to two different sets of people, particularstories and images existed in the cultural thought-space as a result of diffusion?
Ancient Aliens is a serious problem. Their “proof” is the same proof as bible thumping ultra-creationists’.
As for sweet mythological easter eggs, they all lie in finding these ancient connections. Really, you’ve just gotta read up—they’re all over the place! Here are a few little gems off the top of my head:
The Germanic god Frey may have begun as a proto-Hindu deity in the Indus valley thousands of years before.
The Fomorii in Irish mythology—enemies of the reigning gods, the Tuatha de Danann—may have originally been the early pagan deities of Gaul and Celtic Germania.
The opening lines of the book of Genesis are loaded; in Genesis 1:2, it says something to the effect of (based on the translation) “God moved on the face of the waters.” Some scholars believe that in the original Hebrew, this reflects the triumph of Yahweh in battle over the Sumerian Tiamat, the great primordial goddess of salt water. In the early days of Yahweh/El/El Shaddai, (the god that would eventually morph into the modern Judeo-Christian God) he would not have been seen as the only divine entity, but as the mightiest among his divine Mesopotamian peers.
What do you think about Helios as the name for a child? Cause I'm considering it.
It’s cool, I suppose. Do you have a reason for it? If you have some connection with the character and his stories, or if the sun really resonates with you in some life-giving, mother-and-child sense, that might be cool.
I just don’t think that it`s totally rad is a great reason to land on a name. Not that you`re doing that—
I dunno man. But if you do, call him Leo for short, rather than Helly.
Okay not a myth inquiry, but as a history major on hiatus, I wonder what did you/will you do with your major? I just don't really know what I can or should do with a history major.
This is a tough one, but there are open doors out there. Somewhere. Hidden.
People usually say the same stuff: museum curator, researcher, archivist, teacher. Those are all pretty fantastic, but they’d probably require additional training beyond your BA. I’m starting up my Master’s next year, and though I’m not exactly sure where I’ll go, I feel confident I can find something at least close to my field. I might pursue a PhD, or try to catch a research assistant’s gig, but teaching at the post-secondary level is also a big possibility, and would be pretty rad, too.
When I was in high school, counsellors were still telling us we could get any government job we wanted with nothin’ but the ol’ baccalaureate.
Lies. If you really love history, you’ll probably need to keep at it past the introductory 4 years.
But of course you love history! Who doesn’t!?
I love your blog! You don't appear frequently on my dash, but when you do, your posts are always interesting. Keep doing what you're doing! Have a good day!!
Two questions! 1.) I was wondering what you do! Education? 2.) have you read Heimskringla by chance?
Well, I got my BA in History a few years back, and then stumbled, clueless, into the work force. I’ve been riding a desk for two years now, and I’m just about done with it. In January, I’m thrilled to say that I’ll be returning to school for my Master’s degree (also in history).
As for the Heimskringla, I have a copy and I’ve read through a few sections relevant to what I was studying at a certain time, but I’ve never powered through the whole thing. It’s beautiful, though, and I liked the style quite a bit more than the Prose Edda or the Saga of the Volsungs, and you may have just convinced me to dive back in.
What stands out most in my memory is that Harald Fairhair was a straight baller.
November 24, 1859: Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species is published.
On this day in 1859, Charles Darwin brought into the mainstream the theory of evolution by natural selection with the publication of On the Origin of Species, which was the product of at least two decades of research and experimentation. In late 1831, HMS Beagle embarked on what would become a five-year survey voyage across the Atlantic and around the coasts of South America, with Charles Darwin aboard. Darwin served as the captain’s gentleman companion and the ship’s naturalist. Over the course of that five-year voyage between sea and land, Darwin collected samples and made observations, some of which would, upon his return to England, become the foundation for the basic theories promulgated in On the Origin of Species. During the period after his return from the Beagle voyage, Darwin continued to develop his theory and amass through independent research and experimentation a thorough body of evidence that would be included in his publication.
Darwin was not the first to suggest a theory of evolution, or the first to theorize a mechanism by which evolution might occur, or the first to propose natural selection as that basic mechanism (Alfred Russel Wallace independently conceived his own theory of evolution through natural selection). However, On the Origin of Species was widely read by the public, and Darwin, unlike many others of the time who proposed scientific theories that contradicted preexisting scientific notions, was already a respected and established figure in the scientific community of England. Still Darwin’s vague references to human evolution sparked much controversy and especially Biblical debate, although attempts to secularize science were underway and were likely aided by the debate over Darwin’s propositions. Within a few decades of his book’s publication, evolution - though not necessarily natural selection - was generally agreed upon by the scientific community to be a given.
Largest Babylonian tablet found on Turkish-Syrian border"What could be the largest discovered inscribed tablet (stele), dating to the reign of Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar II between 605-562 BC, has been discovered in the Turkish city of Karkamis on the military zone along the Turkey-Syria border.Read more
Do you know the title of the book you just posted the contents page of, it sounds like something I would enjoy a lot.
As a matter of fact, I do!
It’s called “Zeus Grants Stupid Wishes: A No-Bullshit Guide to World Mythology,” and you can find it here!