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Author Topic: The little details of myths - how do you go about them?  (Read 1954 times)
Waldfrau
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« Topic Start: March 10, 2009, 03:56:39 am »

With little details I mean things like Artemis bow being golden or silver.


Do they inspire you, confuse you, bore you, annoy you...?

What importance do they have for your belief and practice?

How do you go about unclear or contradictory stuff?

Could you explain how this works/doesn't work for you with an example?
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« Reply #1: March 10, 2009, 08:23:18 am »

With little details I mean things like Artemis bow being golden or silver.


Do they inspire you, confuse you, bore you, annoy you...?

What importance do they have for your belief and practice?

How do you go about unclear or contradictory stuff?

Could you explain how this works/doesn't work for you with an example?

A lot of the time I find the history to be in the details.  The myth may be that a crop was planted by a particular being and humans, or one tribe of them, grew.  The history is in what particular crop is named.  It tells what was available and important to that tribe in that area.  The myth may be that the mysterious lover brought gifts to the woman and her family, the history is what the gifts were.  One telling will say salmon, another whale meat or hide.

Contradictions don't bother me.  The over-all 'point' of the myth tends to stay the same.  The objects or reactions sometimes identify the time or place of that particular re-telling, and explain how the same being can be regarded in different ways in different places, or how different beings can be the prime actors in the same actions from tribe to tribe.

Then again, contradictions don't bother me in real life among humans and groups of humans.  The important things is often what got done, rather than who did it, and the lesson learned rather than who taught it.

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« Reply #2: March 10, 2009, 06:59:54 pm »

With little details I mean things like Artemis bow being golden or silver.


Do they inspire you, confuse you, bore you, annoy you...?

What importance do they have for your belief and practice?

How do you go about unclear or contradictory stuff?

Could you explain how this works/doesn't work for you with an example?

When it comes to something minor like what Artemis' bow is made of, I just attribute it to different poetic imagery from two different writers.
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« Reply #3: March 11, 2009, 02:44:39 am »


Agreeing with Melamphoros here that minor details seem to be the author's preference and what they think the symbolism is behind it.

A more "major" "contradiction" for me would be who Dionysos' mother is. Some myths specifically state its Semele only, others its Persephone then Semele. It seems however in ancient times that both were seen as true. In fact there are some hymns I believe that refer to him as thrice-born, indicating the Persephone-Semele-Zeus birthings of Him are all equally true.

Lately I've become a lot more lax in reading myths. They are all true in their own way, pieces of truth that allow us to see the Truth. But we're human and not perfect, so we'll never be able to see the full Truth. Just bits and pieces. But that doesn't make them any less true, tbh. And with Dionysos, contradictions are just another way of truely understanding Him, if thats even possible. He is like a walking contradiction, being mortal and immortal at the same time.

Hope this makes sense. Smiley Talking about Dionysos is a bit of a head trip in trying to solidify my thoughts and make them coherent for other people.
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« Reply #4: March 11, 2009, 05:06:51 pm »

When it comes to something minor like what Artemis' bow is made of, I just attribute it to different poetic imagery from two different writers.
That's what I think of contradictions like that too. But I can't say that I'm not bothered a bit. I've just recently started to 'meet' her, so I'm looking everywhere for information. I still don't know how to handle deities at all, so I'd love to have something more coherent at my hands. But well, I guess life is just like it is.  Cheesy

I must say that the core of the myths make a lot of sense to me. The overall picture does fit very well to how I percieved her personality when I met her. I'm just trying to find more helpful info on how to work with her. It's a bit annoying that some stuff is contradictory like several different sources under which tree she was born. Not sure how important it really is, but I would like to have something definitive at least. I feel so lost, like a 13 year old having her first date and not knowing how to behave.

And somehow I also think it's kind of nice to know some little details. (Like if a friend tells you casually something he/she likes and half a year later you give her/him exactly that same thing as a birthday present.)
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