What Myth Taught Us

What Myth Taught Us

Posted 2014-07-23 by Millie Claytonfollow

Recently, I have been researching ancient mythological cultures as part of my university studies. What remains difficult when studying myth is that it's always seen through the framework of another academic discipline; anthropology, history, psychology. Despite the multitude of ways to analyse mythology; there is a contemporary inclination whereby science and ancient mythology are seen as incompatible.

The mere labeling of societies as 'primitive' represents the condescending attitude of the modern day theorist. Despite technological developments, mythology remains to be an extremely rich source of insight. Whether the myth itself is seen as credible remains irrelevant - what is of integral focus is the function of these myths in societies more similar to ours than we may have previously imagined.

Mythology is representative of the timeless inclination towards there being 'something more' than our visual reality. This relates to perceiving something bigger than you, a force, an aura, a deity, whatever. It expands to relate to more than what the physical world immediately represents to us. Despite our logical nature, we have the tendency to perceive the natural world in a supernatural way. Regardless of your personal beliefs, the universal notions towards spirituality are significant. As Mircea Eliade reflected upon, there is an ineffable quality that moves us to perceive the 'sacred' within the 'profane'.

Mythology represents a means to combat the basic existential questions that continue to plague us. They serve to establish a sense of order within chaos. Most significantly, they create a way for us to become unified. To feel less alone when faced with our mortality. My lesson of the week is not to knock a story for its lack of factual 'truth.' Interpreting science shines a brighter light less on our tangible reality and more on our own inclinations as human beings.


252372 - 2023-07-18 07:35:23


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