Chapter 1: Journey From the Unknown

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Non-Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

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The Fountain of Youth

The Fountain of Youthis a legendaryspring that has been said restores the youth of anyone who drinks from it. Tales these fountains have been told in narratives across the world for thousands of years.

Eternal youthis the belief of human physicalimmortalityfree ofaging. The term youth is meant to be a reduction of the negative signs ofaging, rather extending the lifespan.A fountain with an extraordinary type of water is located inEthiopia, which gives the Ethiopians their exceptional long lives.A story of the Water of Lifedescribescrossing theLand of Darknessto find the restorative spring.These beliefs were very popular in Spain during and after the period of Moorish rule, and several explorers journeyed to America in search of the magical water.

Eternal youthis agift frequently desired in myth and legend, and it remains a popular theme infiction. Stories of things such as theelixir of lifeare common throughoutEuropeand elsewhere. Eternal life and eternal youth although they differ in actual meaning is a recurrent theme inGreekandRoman mythology. Theelixir of life, also known as theelixir of immortalityis a legendary drink that grants the drinkereternal lifeand/oreternal youth. Many magicians and witches have pursued it. Theelixirof life was also said to be able to create life. InNorse mythology itis described as providing the Godsapplesthat grant them eternal youthfulness.

Various myths tell the stories about the quest for rejuvenation. It was believed that magicor intervention of asupernaturalpower can bring back the youth and many mythical adventurers set out on quests for themselves, their relatives or some authority that sent them.

The stories continued well into the 16th century. A famous Spanish explorerJuan Ponce de Leónled an expedition around theCaribbean islands toFloridato find theFountain of Youth; many of the seekers perished in the attempt. The Fountain was nowhere to be found as locals were unaware of its exact location.

In some religions, people were to be rejuvenated after death prior to entering heaven.

The Fountain of Youth is a mythic spring that would supposedly grant eternal life and vigor to whoever drank from it. Legends and myths about the tale have existed sinceancient times.

However so far, achieving eternal youth remains beyond the capabilities of man. Unbelievably there is much research currently being conducted in the field of gene

 

Death And Myrthology

 

Death it is common to all humans, regardless of culture, creed, religion, or race. We are all mortal, our lives are limited, and all each in our own way, seek understanding of what happens after we die.

Mostcultureshave agod ofdeath into theirmythologyorreligion. Death, as withbirth, is the major parts of human life. These Gods often are one of the most important Gods of a religion. In some religions with a single powerful deityis an antagonistic deity which wages war against an all powerful benevolent God.

In religions or mythologies which have a multifaceted system of Gods each governing various natural phenomena and features of human life, the occurrence of a deity who is designated with presiding over death is almost essential to the basis of the religion or myth.

Not much is known of the Celtic beliefs of the afterlife. The Celtic Otherworld was an underworld, which was perceived as be a great misty island such as Avalon or in some cases simply a universe parallel to our own. The Celt Otherworld is considered as a place happier Earth; yet resembles the world in which we live, it is peaceful where everything and everyone are carefree and there is no pain.

The Buddhist afterlife is a series of paradises, each one higher and more splendid plane of consciousness, and where each person goes to based on virtue and spirituality. Nirvana, the highest plane, is when there is the release of the soul from all things human where souls exist in a pure state. The soul may spend eras in the various paradises, it eventually returns in reincarnation.

The Egyptian beliefs in death and the afterlife and the practices regarding the dead are not easily understood. Most of it is still unknown to this day, the purpose of the enormous burial chambers the pyramids, and other theories are hidden and still have to come to light to scholars. The Egyptians believed in an underworld in that souls descend through burial. A great deal of their belief in the afterlife was associated with the pharaoh they worshipped, because the pharaoh was considered to be the representative of the gods. Proper & ceremonial burial of the pharaoh would ensure a place in a pleasing afterlife for each of his followers. The anointing and embalming of every body was a sacred ritual for the Egyptians, with priests of Anubis, God of the dead, wearing a death mask to perform the tasks. Most bodies were buried with personal items and riches that were cherished in life, so that the souls could take them with them to the afterlife.

The earliest Hebrew beliefs were pretty bleak. When the person died the soul was reduced to an insignificant wisp of psychic energy which descended into Sheol, a cavity beneath the Earth. The good and the evil both went to Sheol. After time that changed, the good being going to one place of the afterlife and the evil in another. In Christianity this concept in its beliefs of heaven, purgatory and hell was incorporated.

 

 

The afterlife of Islam also has a paradise for the good and a hell and punishment for those who do evil. After the dead are buried and the mourners have departed, two angels are believed to visit the spirit of the departed for judgment. Questions are asked of the individual and if the dead answer all the questions correctly, they enter paradise. If the questions are answered incorrectly, they are sent to hell. There is a belief in a Day of Resurrection souls, when the dead will be made to face God and to be judged. All actions from the deceased the good and bad weighed.

In ancient Greek the most commonly known of the ancient beliefs, the afterlife has similarities to the religions of today such as Christianity. The Greeks believed that the dead were accompanied to the Underworld, ruled by the God Hades, and had to pay coins to the ferryman Charon to cross the River Styx, and enter the Underworld. The Greeks buried their dead with a coin or coins in their mouths, for the fee to Hades. Once in the Underworld, the dead were judged to be good or evil. The good ascended to the Elysian Fields, or Elysium, a place of paradise. The evil descended to fiery Tartarus, where they were punished for eternally, but in some instances there was a sentence of repentance for periods of time before becoming worthy to enter Elysium. This seemed to be a belief in a state of limbo where souls who were not good enough for Elysium, but not evil enough for Tartarus, would stay. This limbo is Asphodel. The Greeks also believed in reincarnation, where judges at the gates of Hades decided the incarnation of each soul.

 

Life and death unknown states that can only be clouded with mystery and dreams. Idealistic ideas and conjecture can confront these obscure places where life continues on a higher plan and a happier existence.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Mythological Monsters

 
 
 
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The Cetos of Troy
The Cetos of Troy was a giganticsea-monstersent by Poseidon to plague the land of Troy as punishment for King Laomedon's refusal to pay him for the building of the city's walls. When Laomedon built Troy, Poseidon and Apollo, who had lost favor with Zeus, were punished to serve Laomedon for wages, and accordingly Poseidon built the walls of Troy, while Apollo attended to the king's flocks on Mount Ida.
 
When the two gods accomplished their tasks, Laomedon refused to recompense them as he had promised and expelled them from his dominions. Poseidon in return for the breach of promise by sent a marine monster into the territory of Troy, which ravaged the whole country. By the command of an oracle, the Trojans were obliged to sacrifice a maiden to the monster; and on one occasion it was decided by lot that Hesione, the daughter of Laomedon himself, to be the victim.
Fortunately for Hesione Heracles was returning from his expedition against the Amazons, and he promised to save the maiden, if Laomedon would give him the horses which Tros had once received from Zeus as a compensation for Ganymedes. Laomedon promised to give them to Heracles, but again when Heracles had killed the monster and saved Hesione he did not keep his word. Heracles waged war against Troy, and killed Laomedon, with all his sons, except Priam and gave Hesione to Telamon.
 
The Python
 
PYTHON was a monstrous serpentwhich Gaia, Mother Earth, appointed to guard the oracle at Delphi. The beast was said to have been born from the slime left behind after the great Deluge. He lived in the caves of mount Parnassus. WhenApollo claimed the shrine as his own, he killed the dragon with his arrows. The oracle and festival of the god were then named Pythian after the dreaded beast.
 
The Dragons of Medea
 
The Dragons of Medea born of the blood of the Titans; were a pair of wingedDragonswhich drew the flying chariot of the witch Medea. She summoned them to escape from Korinthos following the murder of King Kreon, his daughter Kreousa and her own children by Jason.
 
The Ismenian Dragon
 
The Ismenian dragon was a giganticserpentine monsterwhich guarded the sacred spring of Ismenos near Thebes. It was the offspring of Ares the God of war. When the hero Cadmus came to find water in order to found Thebes, he killed the ugly serpent by casting a stone.
The goddess Athena instructed him to sow the dragon's teeth in the earth, which harvested an army of warriors, called Spartan, five of who became the ancestral lords of Thebes.
Out of revenge Ares, the father of the dragon, transformed Cadmos and his wife into serpents.
 
The Hydra
 
The HYDRA LERNAIA was a gigantic, nine-headed serpent, which dwelled the swamps of Lerna. It is said that it was born of Typhoon and Echidna. Heracles was sent to destroy her as one of his twelve labors, but for each of her heads that he decapitated, two more were grown back. He used burning torches to the severed stumps, preventing them from regenerating. In the battle he also destroyed a giant crab who assisted the Hydra.
 
The Hydra and the Crab were placed in the skies as theConstellations Hydra and Cancer by Hera.
 
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The Chimera
 
The Chimera was a huge beast which wreaked havoc on the countryside of Lycia in Anatolia. It was a creature with the body and head of a lion, a goat's head rising from its back, and a serpentine tail.
The heroBellerophonwas commanded to slay it by King Iobates. He battled with the beast on the back of the winged horse Pegususand, drove a lead-tipped lance down the Chimaira's flaming throat and destroyed it. The Chimera was the result of the union of Typhoon and Echidna. It is said that the Sphinx the Nemeian Lion were the monster children of the Chimera.
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Monday, May 14, 2012

Gods and Heros

 
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The Colossus of Rhodes

 
 
Built as a celebration of freedomoriginally, the Colossus stood over 2,000 years ago at the Islands of Rhodes; located off of the southwestern tip of Asia Minor, where the Aegean Sea meets the Mediterranean Sea. The capital city, Rhodes, was built in 408 B.C.
In 357 B.C the island which was conquered by Mausolus of Halicarnassus fell to the Persians in 340 B.C. and was finally captured by Alexander the Great in 332 B.C.

When Alexander died the decision of who would reign could not be determined by the people. Ptolemy, Seleucus, and Antigous divided the kingdom between themselves. Antigous sent his son Semetrious to capture Rhodes. The war was lasted for long a long period and the city suffered. The city was protected by a strong wall.
 
The people of Rhodes put up a daring resistance, and with some help from King Ptolemy their cities withstood the assault. When several of Demetrius 's siege towers were destroyed flooded by the people of Rhodes, Antigonus realized that his son's forces could no longer prevail, and ordered Demetrius to abandon the island. Demetrius moved on to other conquests.
 
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To celebrate their freedom, the people of Rhodes built a giant statue of their patriot God Helious. Colossus was a Latin word, meaning any statue that is larger than life size. The people of Rhodes immediately set about erecting a suitable monument to their victory. They had been praying to their patron god Helios for deliverance throughout the ordeal, so they constructed the enormous statue theColossus of Helios at Rhodes.

Colossus was built in 304 B.C. and it took twelve years to build it. The statue was said to be 110 feet high. In the traditional Greek style the Colossus stood nude, wearing a crown, with his right hand lifted while holding a cloak over his left hand.
Colossus stood for less than 60years. An earthquake struck Rhodes, and the statue collapsed. Huge pieces lay in the harbor for a long time. Of all of the wonders, Colossus was the one that stood the least amount of time but was famous throughout the entire civilized world.
 
Placed upon a 50-foot marble pedestal, the statue's great size ensured that it was visible to ships approaching Rhodes from many miles away. It was an indestructible monument to the power of Rhodes.
 
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The Three Graces Mirth, Splendor and Good Cheer

 
 
 
They are the daughters ofZeusandEurynome, a daughter of theTitansOceanus and Tethys. There are three Graces: Aglaia, Euphrosyne, and Thalia. They are known for their singing and dancing for the gods. The Graces were not major goddesses but who symbolized beauty charm, and goodness.
The Graces were usually found as a group and they were also linked with the Muses.
 
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The main function of the Graces was to bestow beauty, charm, and goodness on young women and to give joy to people. They were frequent companions of Aphrodite the goddess of love and they entertained the gods by dancing to the music of Apollo'slyre. The Graces presided over banquets, dances, and all other social events, and brought joy and benevolence to the gods and mortals.
In some legends Aglaia was wed to Hephaestus, the craftsman who created Zeus’ thunderbolts.
 
Their traditional association was with the arts and like the Muses, inspired artists and poets with the ability to create beautiful art. They are usually represented as slender young girls, dancing in a circle.
 
The Graces symbolize the beauty of emotions such as joy and beauty as in the arts. These three goddesses were to be found in meadows and fields dancing among the flowers which enhanced their own beauty.
 
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Some Popular Heroes and Heriones

 
 
 
 
Achilles was best known as the central figure in The Trojan War. It is said that without the help of Achilles, the Greeks would have never defeated the Trojans. Achilles was a great hero his birth was magical and supernatural.
 
It was foretold that the son of Thetis would be greater than his father. . Thetis was a sea-nymph she knew that her son was destined to be a hero that would die in battle. In order to make him invulnerable she bathed him in the river Styx. However, his ankle the place where she held the child was not bathed in the river.
 
He was a mighty warrior at Troy, but was killed in battle when Paris learned of his vulnerable spot and shot a poisoned arrow into his heel.
 
 
Atlanta was a renowned huntress her skills were so great that she joined the group of hunters on the Calydonian Boar hunt. She made the first strike and was awarded the prize.When Atlanta was born ner father Iasus was disappointed that he had a daughter that he placed her on Mount Parthenon and left her in the open to die. A she bear later found the baby and reared as its own. Atlanta became a renowned huntress her skills were so great that she joined the group of hunters on the Calydonian Boar hunt. King Iasus acknowledged her as his daughter, and commanded that she marry. Atlanta agreed but with the condition that the man have to be able to beat her in a foot race, if not, she could choose to behead him.
 
Only Melanion with the help ofAphrodite, the Goddess of Love was able to win her hand in marriage. Melanion was only going to be able to be Atlanta in a foot race with the help of the mighty Aphrodite. Aphrodite gave him with three golden apples and told him that he was to run the race carrying them. During the race he fell behind and then threw a golden apple in front of Atlanta. These apples were so appealing to her that she stopped three times to pick them up. By doing this she fell far enough behind that she lost the race.
 
Atlanta married Melanion and had one son who became a hero when he came of age.
 
 
 
Hercules is considered one of the greatest heroes in mythology. He was a demigod and possess\\ed great strength and courage. Hercules accomplished great tasks from birth when he strangled two snakes thatHerasent to kill him. Hercules was known for his anger.
One of the most famous acts was to perform 12 labors for his cousin King Eurystheus for offending the Gods. The Nemian Lion-Hercules trapped the lion in its own cave and strangled it with his bare hands. The Hydra of Lernea the hydra was able to generate a new head each time one was cut off. With the help of Iolaus, Hercules defeated the hydra by burning the cut section off each time they were cut off. .
The Wild Boar of Erymanthus was a beast that he had hunted and after defeating him, Hercules returned the dead beast to the king. The Hind of Ceryneia was a special deer that had feet of bronze and antlers of gold. It took Hercules 1 year to accomplish this task. The Stymphalian Birds these birds had wings, beaks, and claws of bronze. Hercules scattered them by shaking a bronze rattle that Athena helped him to make. The Augean Stables The stables of King Elis of Augeus were filthy and contaminated. Hercules managed toclean them by diverting the two nearby rivers and flooding the stables. The Cretan Bull was a bull Hercules captured that had been plaguing the island of Crete. The Horses of Diomedes these were wild beasts that Hercules captured. They were known to eat human flesh and that Hercules fed Diomedes to them. The Girdle of the Amazon The girdle of the famed Queen Hippoloyta of the amazons. Hercules seduced her and took the girdle. The Cattle of Geryon a three-headed monster who had great cattle Hercules managed to capture them. The Stealing of Cerberus the three-headed dog of Hades. Help by the Gods Hermes and Athena he was able to bring the dog to the land of the living. The Apples of the Hesperides were golden apples that belonged to Hera. He tricked the god Atlas, by taking the arth upon his own shoulders while Atlas obtained the apples and then with deception managed to make Atlas take up the Earth again.
 
These heroes and heroines stories have survived time and are considered some of the greatest heroes of all time. Some of the content of these myths are moral in nature while some myths are thought to be historically based.
 
 
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Sunday, May 13, 2012

Heroes and Heroines

 
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The Greek Gods

 
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Submitted: May 18, 2012

© Copyright 2020 bywena. All rights reserved.

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Comments

Vikrant

Very informative. Please keep them coming.

Fri, May 18th, 2012 5:14pm

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I thank you so much for this great compliment (Maybe I spelled that wrong) sometimes mix up words that are alike Anyway I do plan on more and mythology is so very interesting that there is so so much to write about

This weekend I plan on doing more research and digging deeper into my past courses in college to come up with more myths also my reading of so many different myths from other cultures are a little too far in the back of my memories I have delve into the recesses and bring them back

I am sorry this is a long reply I have hypergraphia and it is coming out I will try to be more concise with the replies to comments in the future

Thanks again bywena

Sat, May 19th, 2012 4:47pm

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