Creation Myths Around The World Essay

2219 words - 9 pages

The American Heritage Dictionary defines "myth" as "a popular belief or story that has become associated with a person, institution, or occurrence, especially one considered to illustrate a cultural ideal." There are many myths in the current world but not all of them capture as much attention as creation myths. Every religion, every culture in the world seems to have its own creation myth. There are similarities as well as differences between the creation myths in different religions and different cultures. Despite the similarities and differences, it is very difficult to find a single source of those creation myths, and it is also difficult to determine which culture borrowed the myths from which. But it is very interesting to observe these similarities and differences because these similarities and differences not only showcase the beliefs and perceptions of people following these religions and cultures, but also give us a chance to analyze and become familiar with them.Major world religions have their own versions of creation. Islamic religious books reveal that God called his angels and told them that he wanted to create a vicegerent for Himself on earth. According to Qur'an, "God chose a sounding clay and mud to make man. God then breathed His spirit into dry mud and man came into being. The spirit that God breathed in man represents His own Soul" (Shariati).Hinduism does not mention particularly about the creation of man but it mentions the creation of universe and the world as a whole. According to Chandogya Upanishad,"There was only one Existence and no other. The One thought that there should be many others and that they should grow. So the One created a universe out of Him and created beings. Then the One himself entered into every being" (Fisher 87).The Hindu creation myth clearly shows that God did not differentiate between His creations, and valued them equally. Hence he entered into every being including humans.The Christian creation myth seems like a combination of Islamic and Hindu myths. According to the Bible, " In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth" (Gen. 1.1-1.2), "And the Eternal God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul" (Gen. 2.7). This description of man being created from dust, and God breathing life in man is similar to the creation description in Islam. The Bible also mentions God as saying "Let the waters bring forth swarms of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the firmament of the heavens" (Gen.1.20-1.30). This description is similar to the Hindu description of creation where God creates other creatures along with man.The major similarity that can be seen in the above creation myths is that God created man and other beings. But Islam and Christianity show that man's creation was more important. On the other hand, Hinduism shows that the creation of every being was equally valued. More interesting...

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