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Creation myths

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The dreams of man

Religion

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Not to be confused with the related concept of flood myths.
All the creation myths of all peoples have long been known to be false, and have fairly recently been replaced by infinitely superior and more magnificent explanations. To its list of apologies, religion should simply add an apology for foisting man-made parchments and folk myths upon the unsuspecting, and for taking so long to concede that this had been done. One senses a reluctance to make this admission, since it might tend to explode the whole religious worldview, but the longer it is delayed the more heinous the denial will become.
Christopher Hitchens, God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything[1]

Creation myths are myths about creation.

Almost every religion has one and, for true believers, only their myth is true.

Christianity is particularly well blessed as it has two different stories in Genesis. The first one says man and woman were created on the sixth day of creation. The second story goes into greater detail, describing how after the man was created God brought all the animals to be named by him, but Adam didn't like any of them for a sex partner (not even the sheep) so God knocked Adam out and made him a clone from his rib (with the gender changed) and Adam liked her much better. The sixth day was so busy God decided to rest on the seventh.

Contents

[edit] Christian creation myth

See the main article on this topic: Genesis

The first part of the Book of Genesis of the Christian Bible, to 2:3, tells of the creation of the Earth. The second part, from 2:4b, tells of the creation and fall of man. The two stories have different styles and at times contradict each other. The existence of two stories suggests there were at least two different sources.

Although biblical inerrantists regard Genesis as a historical account of our origin, scholars and Christians as early as the first century have argued it was intended by its authors to be symbolic. At times the Genesis myth contradicts modern scientific findings. For example, plants are created before the sun.

[edit] Comparison of Genesis with other cosmogonies

See the main article on this topic: Genesis#Origin of Genesis accounts

Similarities with Sumerian, Akkadian, Hindu, and Canaanite creation myths and ancient Near Eastern mythologies indicate that they were sources for Genesis. Elements of the myth of the Sumerian goddess Nidaba can be found in Genesis.

The Genesis story resembles the Babylonian creation myth Enuma Elish with the biblical days represented by the activities of various deities. Symbols related to the goddess Asherah of Semitic mythology are incorporated into Genesis.

Aspects of traditions from Egyptian mythology regarding the origin of the Earth and humans are similar to those found in Genesis. [2]

Other biblical passages, especially in Psalms, appear to have their origins in Canaanite, Babylonian, and Persian mythologies and other ancient eastern Mediterranean creation beliefs.

[edit] Other creation myths

The dominant one in this culture happens to be the Jewish creation myth, which is taken over from the Babylonian creation myth. There are, of course, lots and lots of others...
Richard Dawkins[3]

Nearly every culture has a creation myth. They help to satisfy our need to understand the universe and our place in it. Themes common to many include a birth, original chaos or a previous world, a divine edict that when disobeyed brings suffering to mankind, a flood, and the actions of a supreme being. The common thread of all creation myths is that they can neither be proven nor disproven.

The creation stories of the Norse, the Greek, the many Native American peoples, the Chinese, the Japanese, African, and many other mythologies deserve just as much consideration as the Christian creation myth. As an example of a more modern creation story, see Xenu or the Flying Spaghetti Monster.

[edit] See also

[edit] External links

[edit] Footnotes

  1. Page 205-206.
  2. Shetter, Tony L. (April 18, 2005). "Genesis 1-2 In Light Of Ancient Egyptian Creation Myths." bible.org.
  3. Dawkins, Richard. "Is Science a Religion."
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