What is mythology?


That was the question we explored in class today. For me, at least, it has a variety of meanings – a story, a moral, a belief, a way of life. I guess the reason I like mythology so much is because my family never really talked about our origins very much – and I was always curious about the land we had come from. It just seems so far away and foreign to me. Reading through Norse mythology was a way for me to connect with it. And especially since my family isn’t religious it provided me with something to believe. Do I believe that there’s a cosmic tree that provides the home for the gods, humans, trolls, giants, etc? No. Not logically. But is it nice to think that our entire world is a very simple organic object? I have to admit it’s a lot easier to grasp at times. And whether or not I’d like to admit it, it has influenced the way I think and feel about things. If the entire world is a tree, shouldn’t I do my best not to ruin it? It’s influenced my views on nature and how I have to take care of it. And there’s a Norse story about how the trickster god Loki tricked the god Hodr to kill his perfect brother Baldr. The story’s pretty complex, but there’s values of family love – from Hodr’s guilt to Baldr’s mother’s dedication – and an idea that even the most simple of substances can be made into something useful (in this case, a mistletoe branch into a lethal arrow). There’s a lot to read into all the stories I’ve learned, and it served me basically how a religion would – a moral and spiritual guide. I may not pray to the Gods, like a Christian would to Jesus, Mary or the Holy Father, but those gods did provide me with the same lessons found in the Bible (more or less). And please don’t be offended by this. Have a great weekend!

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