Similarities In The Mythologies Of Creation

1683 words - 7 pages

Throughout history many civilizations and cultures have had their own ways of explaining the world and its creation. Each of these civilizations has created unique descriptions and accounts of such events. However, when comparing them to each other, are they really different? Look at the ancient Greco - Roman creation myths as told by Hesiod in his Theogony and Works and Days and Ovid’s Metamorphoses, when compared to the creation myths as seen in the Old Testament’s book of Genesis they may not be as different as one would think. Taking a more in-depth look at both Genesis and Hesiod’s and Ovid’s work more closely, the reader can see that on multiple occasions the myths have almost identical similarities which reflect their views in society. The similarities in particular are the myths of the creation of man, women with their subsequent role of evil in ancient times, and the great floods. These similarities prove that even though these two scriptures were centuries apart, the concepts presented in each myth were almost identical to one another.
The first similarity seen in the comparison of these creation myths is the creation of man. The ancient Greco-Roman mythology has two accounts of man’s creation, both of which were created around the same time, yet the conflict with each other. The first account comes from Hesiod and tells of the five ages of Man. Throughout this account Hesiod tells how Cronus and eventually Zeus, the supreme god, creates the human race in each of the ages. This relates to The Seven Days of Creation myth in the book of Genesis because God is the supreme power that creates humans, just like Zeus in Hesiod’s telling. When God is creating the world, he states “Let us make humankind in our image, according to our likeness” (Genesis I: 26). This bears a huge resemblance to Zeus creating man in each age. The second Greco – Roman account, although contradicting Hesiod’s account, relates to God’s creation of man in terms of how it happened. Ovid’s Metamorphoses, tells of “The creator of the universe, originator of a better world, fashioned him from divine seed, or earth, . . . mixed with rain water by Prometheus, son of Iapetus, and fashioned by him into the likeness of the gods” (Ovid Metamorphoses I. 76-88). Prometheus is the creator in this account, and his method of creation resembles that of the Book of Genesis. God creates man in his Garden of Eden in the same fashion. God forms man out of the earth, just as Prometheus does. The two myths become even more alike when the reader finds that Athena breathes life into Prometheus’ man, just as God breathes life into Adam. When comparing these myths, it is quite apparent that the civilizations have similar views; both show strong ties to the idea that man thought it was created from the earth and made in the image of the gods.
After the creation of man, life went on, but all was not well. Both Hesiod and Genesis reveal that an evil was introduced into the world. This evil...

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