HUM/105-Wk2- World Mythology
June 12, 2014
Cosmic Creation Myths Across Cultures
Two myths that I have chosen for my paper are on the Norse culture of Iceland Vikings and the Genesis creation of the Hebrew origin of Christian culture. Both creation myths begin with a void where chaos or conflict develops. The Norse myth narrates a conflict between the fiery realm or Muspell and the dark, cold realm of Niflheim within the emptiness called ginnungagap and where nothing could grow. The Genesis conflict was between God and nothing, loneliness, and the need to create something wonderful and beautiful.
Genesis cosmogonies apply both the deus faber and ex nihilo motifs. In Genesis it often considered the ex nihilo myth, meaning "out of nothing" Genesis, of God's creation in six days by speaking into existence light and darkness, sun and moon, stars and earth, plants and animals, and birds and fish. God then generates Adam in His image from the dust and breathes life into him and Eve was formed from one of Adam's ribs.
The Nordic creation myths tend to combine accretion/conjunction, secretion, and sacrifice motifs. It features the blending of fire and ice in a random joining of elements. When the warm breath of Muspell meets the frost of arctic Nieflheim, ice melts and the resulting water drops come to life, creating the evil giant Ymir. As the giant sleeps, sweat from his armpits creates the first man and woman.
The Norse culture is made up of what we call Vikings. They had a pantheon of 14 major gods and conceived the cosmos as divided into three levels: Asgard, Aesir, is the upper level and land of the major gods, fertility gods, and where light elves also lived. Midgard is the middle level where men, giants, dwarves, and dark elves lived. Niflheim is the lower level, better known as the underworld, where the evil dead died a second time in the fortress city of
References: Fairchild, M. (2013, January 4). The Creation Story - Bible StoryÂ Summary. About.com Christianity. Retrieved from http://christianity.about.com/od/biblestorysummaries/p/creationstory.htm Leonard, S., & McClure, M. (2004). Myth & Knowing: An introduction to world mythology. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill. Shmoop Editorial Team. (November 11, 2008).The Myth of Norse Creation Myth. Retrieved February 11, 2013, from http://www.shmoop.com/norse-creation-myth