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A myth is a story that has widespread shared meaning and whose specific origins are usually unknown. Myths often have an epic quality, and often serve as a means by which to explain the origins of a people or to explain naturalistic phenomena. Myths often reveal aspects of a culture's religion, history, values, morals, and world views.
 Religious myths
Myths form the basis of many religions, explaining everything from how the world was created, to the relationship with the dieties. The mythos that inform most religions are complex, and touch on most aspects of both everyday life and the spiritual world. Examples from modern religion include the story of Noah, the story of Jesus and his life, Buddha's time under a bodi tree, and the marriage of Mohammad. Many religious myths have a moral point to them, and were used to teach lessons and impart wisdom on the listener.
Because myths are tied to a culture's various religious and social beliefs and practices, myths are often studied draft a picture of how cultures lived and behaved at various times in their development.
 Popular perception
In popular contexts, a "myth" is a falsehood. Sometimes the myths are intentional falsehoods, to act as a carrier of one group's views that has been "disproved," such as the "myth of weapons of mass destruction," or Ann Coulter's The Myth of McCarthyism. But really anything that has been disproved is often labeled a "myth." "I heard putting plastic in the microwave is dangerous. Nah, that's just a myth."