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Encyclopedia > Christian mythology
Note on religion and mythology:
In its academic sense, the word myth simply means "a traditional story", whether true or false. (—OED, Princeton Wordnet) Unless otherwise noted, the words mythology and myth are here used for sacred and traditional narratives, with no implication that any belief so embodied is itself either true or false.

Christian mythology is the body of traditional narrative associated with Christianity. Many Christians believe that these stories are sacred and that they communicate profound truths. These traditional narratives include, but are not necessarily limited to, narrative portions of the Christian scriptures. A neutral approach must take it as an axiom that Christian mythology is neither more true nor falser than, for example, Greek mythology. Religion and mythology differ, but have overlapping aspects. ... The word mythology (from the Greek μυολογία mythología, from mythologein to relate myths, from mythos, meaning a narrative, and logos, meaning speech or argument) literally means the (oral) retelling of myths – stories that a particular culture believes to be true and that use the supernatural to interpret natural events and... In various religions, sacred (from Latin, sacrum, sacrifice) or holy, objects, places or concepts are believed by followers to be intimately connected with the supernatural, or divinity, and are thus greatly revered. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... In various religions, sacred (from Latin, sacrum, sacrifice) or holy, objects, places or concepts are believed by followers to be intimately connected with the supernatural, or divinity, and are thus greatly revered. ... The bust of Zeus found at Otricoli (Sala Rotonda, Museo Pio-Clementino, Vatican) Greek mythology is the body of stories belonging to the Ancient Greeks concerning their gods and heroes, the nature of the world and the origins and significance of their own cult and ritual practices. ...


The Christian religion has diverged over the centuries into many denominations, and not all hold the same set of sacred traditional narratives. For example, the Roman Catholic Bible contains a number of narrative books — including the Book of Judith and the Book of Tobit — that the Protestant Bible does not include. The Roman Catholic Church, most often spoken of simply as the Catholic Church, is the largest Christian church, with over one billion members. ... This Gutenberg Bible is displayed by the United States Library. ... Judith with the Head of Holophernes, by Christophano Allori, 1613 (Pitti Palace, Florence) The Book of Judith is a deuterocanonical book, included in the Septuagint and in the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Christian Old Testament of the Bible, but excluded by Jews and Protestants. ... Tobias and the Angel, by Filippino Lippi The Book of Tobit (or Book of Tobias in older Catholic Bibles) is a book of scripture that is part of the Catholic and Orthodox and Anglican biblical canon, pronounced canonical by the Council of Carthage of 397 and confirmed for Roman Catholics... Protestantism is a general grouping of denominations within Christianity. ...

Contents

In canonical scripture

William-Adolphe Bouguereau (1825-1905) - Song of the Angels (1881). Illustrations showing Christian saints communicating with angels are prevalent throughout Europe.

Download high resolution version (1754x2563, 1309 KB) Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Download high resolution version (1754x2563, 1309 KB) Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... William-Adolphe Bouguereau, self-portrait (1886). ... The Annunciation - the Angel Gabriel announces to Mary that she will bear Jesus (El Greco, 1575) An angel is an ethereal being found in many religions, whose duties are to assist and serve God. ...

Issues of academic terminology

There is no scholarly consensus about the proper definition of the word "myth". In its broadest academic sense, the word "myth" simply means a traditional story. However, many scholars restrict the term "myth" to sacred stories. [11] Professional folklorists often go farther: by the classic definition used by folklorists, myths are "tales believed as true, usually sacred, set in the distant past or other worlds or parts of the world, and with extra-human, inhuman, or heroic characters". [12] Folkloristics is the formal academic study of folklore such as fairy tales and folk mythology in oral or non-literary traditions. ...


If "myth", narrowly defined, must be both sacred and "believed as true", then the most clear-cut examples of Christian mythology come from Christian scripture and from the richly-developed hagiographic tradition, with its miraculous wonders. Most Christians consider Biblical stories not just sacred but also true, at least in some sense. (Whether all Biblical stories are literally true is a matter of disagreement among Christians. For a discussion of the debate, see Biblical literalism.) Hagiography is the study of saints. ... Biblical literalism is the supposed adherence to the explicit and literal sense of the Bible. ...


Note that the term "mythology" does not encompass all of the Christian scriptures. Because a myth is a traditional story, non-narrative scriptures or portions of scripture (e.g., proverbs, theological writings) are not themselves "myths".


Note also that the term "myth" may not encompass all stories in Christian scripture, depending on how strictly one defines the word "myth". One's use of the word "myth" is largely a matter of one's academic discipline. Scholars in religious studies often restrict the term "myth" to stories whose main characters are gods or near-gods: this definition would actually exclude much of the Hebrew Bible, which may involve God but often does not feature him as the center of attention.[1] Some folklorists restrict the word "myth" to only those stories that deal with the creation of the world and of natural phenomena.[2][3] By this definition, "only the two creation stories (Genesis 1 and 2), the Garden of Eden story (Genesis 3), and the Noah story (Genesis 6-9) would thereby qualify as myths. All the other stories would instead constitute either legends or folk tales."[4] 11th century manuscript of the Hebrew Bible with Targum Hebrew Bible is a term that refers to the common portions of the Jewish canon and the Christian canons. ...


Types of mythology in Christian scripture

Myths fall into many subcategories. These are a few of the types of myths found in Christian scriptures:

  • Cosmogonic myths describe the creation of the world. As noted above, the two creation stories in Genesis, the Garden of Eden story, and the Noah story are cosmogonic myths.
  • Origin myths (also called etiological myths) also describe how the world came to have its present form. However, while cosmogonic myths describe only the creation of the universe, origin myths build upon the cosmogonic myths, describing the origin of natural phenomena and human institutions within the universe.[5] The Book of Genesis is a major example of Christian origin mythology.
  • Legends are stories that take place relatively recently (relative to the mythological age of origins) and that generally focus on human rather than supernatural characters. Some scholars, particularly folklorists, strictly distinguish legends from "true" myths.[6]
  • Eschatological myths describe the afterlife and the end of the world. The Apocalypse of John (Book of Revelation) is a popular example of Christian eschatology; other examples of eschatology (inherited from the Old Testament) appear in the Book of Isaiah and the Book of Ezekiel.[7] The last six chapters of the Book of Daniel also involve apocalyptic descriptions.

In the culture of the ancient Semitic and Mediterranean worlds in the context of which early Christianity and its literature arose — even up to the European Middle Ages when further traditions and legends were developed — there often did not exist the separation that exists for many societies in the modern period between fields of history and mythology, or the attempt to discern between objective truth and spiritual truths.[8] It has been suggested that Creation within belief systems be merged into this article or section. ... This article is becoming very long. ... Etiology (alternately aetiology, aitiology) is the study of causation. ... A legend (Latin, legenda, things to be read) is a narrative of human actions that are perceived both by teller and listeners to take place within human history and to possess certain qualities that give the tale verisimilitude. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with End times. ... Visions of John of Patmos, as depicted in the Très Riches Heures du Duc de Berry. ... Note: Judaism commonly uses the term Tanakh to refer to its canon, which corresponds to the Protestant Old Testament. ... This article is about the Book of Isaiah. ... Book Of Ezekiel is rapper Freekey Zekeys debut album and debut on Diplomat Records/Asylum. ... For other uses, see Book of Daniel (disambiguation). ... In linguistics and ethnology, Semitic (from the Biblical Shem, Hebrew: שם, translated as name, Arabic: سام) was first used to refer to a language family of largely Middle Eastern origin, now called the Semitic languages. ... The Mediterranean Sea is an intercontinental sea positioned between Europe to the north, Africa to the south and Asia to the east, covering an approximate area of 2. ... The Middle Ages formed the middle period in a traditional schematic division of European history into three ages: the classical civilization of Antiquity, the Middle Ages, and modern times, beginning with the Renaissance. ... For other uses of objectivity, see objectivity (disambiguation). ... Spirituality, in a narrow sense, concerns itself with matters of the spirit. ...


Specific subtopics are discussed below.


In non-canonical tradition

Saint Brendan's voyage, from a German manuscript
Saint Brendan's voyage, from a German manuscript

Traditional Christian stories include many that do not come from canonical Christian texts yet still illustrate Christian themes. These stories are considered by some Christian journalists, theologians, and academics (see citations below) to constitute a body of "Christian mythology". Examples include hagiographies such as the tale of Saint George or Saint Valentine. Image File history File links Saint_brendan_german_manuscript. ... Image File history File links Saint_brendan_german_manuscript. ... A biblical canon is a list of Biblical books which establishes the set of books which are considered to be authoritative as scripture by a particular Jewish or Christian community. ... Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations · Other religions Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Luther Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Archbishop of Canterbury · Catholic Pope Coptic Pope · Ecumenical Patriarch Christianity Portal This box:      Christianity is... Hagiography is the study of saints. ... Saint-George is a municipality with 695 inhabitants (as of 2003) in the district of Aubonne in the canton of Vaud, Switzerland. ... Saint Valentine (also Valentinus) refers to one of several martyred saints of ancient Rome. ...


A case in point is the historical and canonized Brendan of Clonfort, a 6th century Irish churchman and founder of abbeys. Round his authentic figure was woven a tissue that is arguably legendary rather than historical: the Navigatio or "Journey of Brendan". The legend discusses mythic events in the sense of supernatural encounters. In this narrative, Brendan and his shipmates encounter sea monsters, a paradisal island and a floating ice islands and a rock island inhabited by a holy hermit: literal-minded devotés still seek to identify "Brendan's islands" in actual geography. This voyage was recreated by Tim Severin, suggesting that whales, icebergs and Rockall were encountered.[9] Saint Brendan, (484 (?) – 577 (?)) called the Navigator, is one of the early Irish monastic saints whose legends have overshadowed their history. ... A legend (Latin, legenda, things to be read) is a narrative of human actions that are perceived both by teller and listeners to take place within human history and to possess certain qualities that give the tale verisimilitude. ... Paradise, Jan Bruegel Paradise is an English word from Persian roots that is generally identified with the Garden of Eden or with Heaven. ... Tim Severin was born in India in 1940. ... This article is about the animal. ... Icebergs at Cape York, Greenland Iceberg at Cape York, Greenland Iceberg, Témpanos, Patagonia, Argentina. ... This article contains a trivia section. ...


In other literature

In literary classics

Some novels and narrative poems centered on Christian themes have come to be regarded as literary classics. In a broad sense, these may also fall within the category of Christian mythology. These classics include Pilgrim's Progress by John Bunyan and The Divine Comedy by Dante. The Pilgrims Progress from This World to That Which Is to Come by John Bunyan (published 1678) is an allegorical novel. ... John Bunyan. ... Detail of a manuscript in Milans Biblioteca Trivulziana (MS 1080), written in 1337 by Francesco di ser Nardo da Barberino, showing the beginning of Dantes Comedy. ... DANTE is also a digital audio network. ...


In "Mythopoeia"

Some works of the Christian authors C. S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien have been described as both Christian and "mythic" or "mythopoeic" ("myth-making") literature.[13] Tolkien described his own fiction writing as an effort to create "myth and fairy-story".[14] Tolkien actually coined the term "mythopoeia" for modern literature that features a mythical tone and/or mythological themes. The Lord of the Rings is Tolkien's most famous example of mythopoeia. Clive Staples Jack Lewis (29 November 1898 – 22 November 1963), commonly referred to as C. S. Lewis, was an Irish author and scholar. ... J. R. R. Tolkien in 1916. ... Mythopoeic literature is literature that involves the creation of fictional myths. ... Mythopoeic literature is literature that involves the making of myths. ... This article is about the novel. ...


Tolkien and Lewis regarded their writing as essentially Christian. Tolkien emphatically denied that his fantasy novels, the Lord of the Rings series, were in any sense "allegory",[15] but he admitted that they were "a fundamentally religious and Catholic work; unconsciously so at first, but consciously in the revision".[16] Similarly, many of Lewis's works borrowed extensively from Christian narratives: one of the clearest examples is the Chronicles of Narnia, which has been interpreted as an allegory for certain Biblical stories, namely one of the central stories is of a great king who is sacrificed to save his people and is resurrected after three days. In the case of the Narnia series, Lewis denied that he was simply representing the Christian story in symbols.[10] These works of Christian "mythopoeia" may, along with other Christian literary classics, be classed as "Christian mythology" in a very broad sense. The Chronicles of Narnia is a series of seven fantasy novels for children written by C. S. Lewis. ... Look up king in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Three Days is the sixth song off Janes Addictions landmark 1990 album, Ritual de lo Habitual. ...

See also: Mythopoeia (genre)

Mythopoeia (Greek for myth-making) is a narrative genre in modern literature and film where a fictional mythology was created by the author or director. ...

In popular culture

See the section below regarding the evolution of Christmas stories.


Important examples of Christian mythology

The Christian mythological history

Important events in the mythological history that is accepted (with variations) by most Christians:

The Mythological Age
The Legendary Age
The Future Age and After-life

This article is about the biblical text. ... This article is about the biblical text. ... This article is about the concept of Satan. ... Combatants Rebel angels Loyalist angels Commanders Lucifer Michael the Archangel Strength 133,306,668 (disputed) 266,613,336(disputed) Casualties uncertain uncertain A facet of Christian mythology, the War in Heaven was a defining moment in the universe, when the cherub angel Lucifer led a third of the Angels in... Adam, Eve, and a female serpent (possibly Lilith) at the entrance to Notre Dame de Paris In Abrahamic religion, the Fall of Man, the Story of the Fall, or simply, the Fall, refers to mans transition from a state of innocence to a state of knowing only dualities such... “Original Sin” redirects here. ... “Original Sin” redirects here. ... A painting by the American Edward Hicks (1780–1849), showing the animals boarding Noahs Ark two by two. ... The Confusion of Tongues by Gustave Doré According to the narrative in Genesis Chapter 11 of the Bible, the Tower of Babel was a tower built by a united humanity in order to reach the heavens. ... “Abram” redirects here. ... Exodus is the second book of the Torah, the Tanakh, and the Old Testament. ... Main article: Land of Israel The Kingdom of David and Solomon. ... For other senses of this word, see Prophet (disambiguation). ... In Judeo-Christian theologies, apocrypha refers to religious Sacred text that have questionable authenticity or are otherwise disputed. ... Wikisource has original text related to this article: Bible, English, King James, Bel The tale of Bel and the Dragon is from chapter 14 of the Book of Daniel. ... Gospel, from the Old English good tidings is a calque of Greek () used in the New Testament (see Etymology below). ... Wikipedia does not yet have an article with this exact name. ... This article is about logos (logoi) in ancient Greek philosophy, mathematics, rhetoric, Theophilosophy, and Christianity. ... Christ en majesté, Matthias Grünewald, 16th c. ... Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Wycliffe Tyndale · Luther · Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Pope · Archbishop of Canterbury Patriarch of Constantinople Christianity Portal This box:      Son of God is... For other uses, see Atonement (disambiguation). ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article may require cleanup. ... The term Virgin Mary has several different meanings: Mary, the mother of Jesus, the historical and multi-denominational concept of Mary Blessed Virgin Mary, the Roman Catholic theological and doctrinal concept of Mary Marian apparitions shrines to the Virgin Mary Virgin Mary in Islam, the Islamic theological and doctrinal concept... In the synoptic gospels, Jesus is baptised by John the Baptist. ... The temptation of Christ in Christianity, refers to the temptation of Jesus by the devil as detailed in each of the Synoptic Gospels, at Matthew 4:1-11, Mark 1:12-13, and Luke 4:1-13. ... Icon of the Transfiguration (15th century, Novgorod) The Transfiguration of Jesus is an event reported by the Synoptic Gospels in which Jesus was transfigured upon a mountain (Matthew 17:1-9, Mark 9:1-8, Luke 9:28-36). ... The parables of Jesus, found in the synoptic gospels, embody much of Jesus teaching. ... The Last Supper in Milan (1498), by Leonardo da Vinci. ... The Resurrection—Tischbein, 1778. ... This article is about the Ascension of Jesus Christ. ... The tone of this article is inappropriate for an encyclopedia article. ... Paul of Tarsus (b. ... The Descent of the Holy Spirit in a 15th century illuminated manuscript. ... For the Friedrich Nietzsche book, see The Antichrist. ... This article refers to the religious usage of the term. ... // Main article: Jewish eschatology Orthodox Judaism holds that belief in the Resurrection of the Dead is one of the cardinal principles of the Jewish faith. ... The Kingdom of God or Reign of God (Greek: - Basileia tou Theou,[1]) is a foundational concept in Christianity, as it is the central theme of Jesus of Nazareths message in the synoptic Gospels. ...

Other examples

Dante and Beatrice gaze upon the highest Heaven (The Empyrean), illustration for the Divine Comedy by Gustave Doré (1832-1883), Paradiso Canto 31.
Dante and Beatrice gaze upon the highest Heaven (The Empyrean), illustration for the Divine Comedy by Gustave Doré (1832-1883), Paradiso Canto 31.

Examples of (1) Christian myths not mentioned in canon and (2) literary and traditional elaborations on canonical Christian mythology: Image File history File links Download high resolution version (858x952, 205 KB) Dante and Beatrice gaze upon the highest Heaven (The Empyrean); from Gustave Dorés illustrations to the Divine Comedy, Paradiso Canto 31. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (858x952, 205 KB) Dante and Beatrice gaze upon the highest Heaven (The Empyrean); from Gustave Dorés illustrations to the Divine Comedy, Paradiso Canto 31. ...

See also: Christian fiction

Gnosticism is a blanket term for various religions and sects most prominent in the first few centuries A.D. General characteristics The word gnosticism comes from the Greek word for knowledge, gnosis (γνῶσις), referring to the idea that there is special, hidden mysticism (esoteric knowledge... This article is about the Gnostic Valentinus. ... For the Gnostic Christians, the Sophia was a central element in their cosmological understanding of the Universe. ... The Demiurge, The Craftsman or Creator, in some belief systems, is the deity responsible for the creation of the physical universe. ... Manichaeism was one of the major ancient religions. ... In Christianity, Docetism is the belief, regarded by most theologians as heretical, that Jesus did not have a physical body; rather, that his body was an illusion, as was his crucifixion. ... The Gnostic Gospels are a class of writings about the life of Jesus which are associated with the early mystical trend of Gnostic Christianity. ... For other persons named John Milton, see John Milton (disambiguation). ... Title page of the first edition (1667) Paradise Lost is an epic poem in blank verse by the 17th-century English poet John Milton. ... Paradise Regaind is a poem by the 17th century English poet John Milton, published in 1671. ... Dante in a fresco series of famous men by Andrea del Castagno, ca. ... John Bunyan. ... The Pilgrims Progress from This World to That Which Is to Come by John Bunyan (published 1678) is an allegorical novel. ... The Pilgrims Regress is a book of allegorical fiction by C.S. Lewis. ... In traditional Christian iconography, Saints are often depicted as having halos. ... Tenth-century icon of Abgar with the mandylion, the image of Christ Abgar V or Abgarus V of Edessa (4 BC - AD 7 and AD 13 - 50) is a historical ruler of the kingdom of Osroene, holding his capital at Edessa. ... Saint-George is a municipality with 695 inhabitants (as of 2003) in the district of Aubonne in the canton of Vaud, Switzerland. ... Hagiography is the study of saints. ... A miracle, derived from the old Latin word miraculum meaning something wonderful, is a striking interposition of divine intervention by God in the universe by which the ordinary course and operation of Nature is overruled, suspended, or modified. ... Jacobus de Voragine (c. ... The story of St George and the dragon is one of many stories of the saints preserved in the Golden Legend. ... For other uses, see Holy Grail (disambiguation). ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Holy Lance. ... This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ... This list of names for the Biblical nameless compiles names given in Jewish or Christian mythology for characters who are unnamed in the Bible itself. ... A bronze Arthur in plate armour with visor raised and with jousting shield wearing Kastenbrust armour (early 15th century) by Peter Vischer, typical of later anachronistic depictions of Arthur. ... The Matter of France, also known as the Carolingian cycle is a body of legendary history that springs from the Old French medieval literature of the chansons de geste. ... This article is about the word, for other meanings see Quest (disambiguation) A quest is a journey towards a goal with great meaning and is used in mythology and literature as a plot device. ... For other uses, see Holy Grail (disambiguation). ... For the architectural structure, see Church (building). ... This article is about the medieval crusades. ... For other uses, see Paladin (disambiguation). ... As a literary genre, romance or chivalric romance refers to a style of heroic prose and verse narrative current in Europe from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance. ... The Poor Fellow-Soldiers of Christ and of the Temple of Solomon (Latin: Pauperes commilitones Christi Templique Solomonici), popularly known as the Knights Templar or the Order of the Temple, were among the most famous of the Christian military orders. ... Prieuré de Sion, usually rendered in English translation as Priory of Sion or even Priory of Zion, is an elusive protagonist in many works of both non-fiction and fiction. ... This article is about the supernatural being. ... Guardian Angel (Schutzengel) (1840), by Matthäus Kern. ... Salomé, like Dismas, or the various names of the Three Magi, is a name given to a character in the Bible whose name is not given in the Bible itself. ... For other uses, see Magi (disambiguation). ... Saint Dismas (sometimes spelled Dysmas or Dimas), also known as the Good Thief, is the apocryphal name given to one of the thieves who was crucified alongside Christ according to the Gospel of Luke 23:39-43: And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on him, saying, If... Christian literature is writing that deals Christian themes and incorporates the Christian worldview. ...

In-depth discussion of representative examples

Academic studies of mythology often define mythology as deeply held beliefs that explain a society's existence and world order: those stories of a society's creation, the society's origins and foundations, their God(s), their original heroes, mankind's connection to the "divine", and their narratives of eschatology (what happens in the "after-life"). This is a very general outline of some of the basic sacred stories with those themes: For the book by Pope Benedict XVI, see Eschatology (book). ...


Cosmogonic myths

The Christian texts use the same creation story as Jewish mythology, the stories of the Old Testament, that the world was created out of a darkness and water in seven days. A Christian might include here the miracle of Jesus' birth.[11] Canonical Christian scripture incorporates the two Hebrew cosmogonic myths found in Genesis 1-2:2 and Genesis 2: Creation beliefs and stories describe how the universe, the Earth, life, and/or humanity came into being. ... Jewish mythology is a body of stories that explains or symbolizes Jewish beliefs. ...


Genesis 1-2:3

In the creation myth in Genesis 1-2:3, the Creator is called Elohim (translated "God"). He creates the universe over a six-day period, creating a new feature each day: first he creates day and night; then he creates the firmament to separate the "waters above" from the "waters below"; then he separates the dry land from the water; then he creates plants on the land; then he places the sun, moon, and stars in the sky; then he creates swimming and flying animals; then he creates land animals; and finally he creates man and woman together, "in his own image". On the seventh day, God rests, providing the rationale for the custom of resting on the sabbath.[12] Michelangelos Creation of Adam, from the Sistine Chapel. ... This article concerns the Sabbath in Christianity. ...


Genesis 2:4-3:24

The second creation myth in Genesis differs from the first in a number of important elements. Here the Creator is called Yahweh (commonly translated "Lord") instead of Elohim. (In later parts of the Old Testament, Yahweh and Elohim are used interchangeably.)


This myth begins with the words, "When the LORD God made the earth and the heavens- 5 and no shrub of the field had yet appeared on the earth and no plant of the field had yet sprung up ..." (Genesis 2:4). It then proceeds to describe the Lord creating a man called Adam out of dust. The Lord creates the Garden of Eden as a home for Adam, and tells Adam not to eat the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge in the center of the Garden (next to the Tree of Life). For other uses, see Garden of Eden (disambiguation). ... This article does not cite its references or sources. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ...


The Lord also creates animals, either before or after man (see section on "dual or single account" below), and shows them to man, who names them. The Lord sees that there is no suitable companion for the man among the beasts, and He subsequently puts Adam to sleep and takes out one of Adam's ribs, creating from it a woman whom Adam names Eve.


A serpent tempts Eve to eat from the Tree of Knowledge, and she succumbs, offering the fruit to Adam as well. As a punishment, the Lord banishes the couple from the Garden and "placed on the east side of the Garden of Eden the cherubim with a fiery revolving sword to guard the way to the Tree of Life".[13] The Lord says he must banish humans from the Garden because they have become like him, knowing good and evil (because of eating the forbidden fruit), and now only immortality (which they could get by eating from the Tree of Life) stands between them and godhood: For other uses, see Serpent (disambiguation). ... In the Bible, the forbidden fruit is the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil eaten by Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. ...

"The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever" (Genesis 3:22).

The actual text of Genesis does not identify the tempting serpent with Satan. However, Christian tradition identifies the two. This tradition has made its way into non-canonical Christian "myths" such as John Milton's Paradise Lost. This article is about the concept of Satan. ... Title page of the first edition (1667) Paradise Lost is an epic poem in blank verse by the 17th-century English poet John Milton. ...


Dual or single account?

Scholars disagree about whether these creation myths give a single harmonious account or two contradictory accounts. The first myth says God created plants and animals before man. However, the second myth can be interpreted as putting the creation of man before the creation of the plants and animals.


Some scholars (particularly those who support the Documentary hypothesis, which proposes that the Pentateuch had multiple authors), interpret Genesis as clearly containing two contradictory creation myths.[14] This interpretation has become increasingly accepted among Biblical critics, even in some conservative Christian circles.[15] It is especially common among scholars who do not believe in a literal or conservative interpretation of Genesis: one example is The Skeptic's Annotated Bible, which argues strongly for two distinct creation myths in Genesis.[17] A relational diagram describing the various versions postulated by the biblical documentary hypothesis. ... Look up Pentateuch in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... The Skeptics Annotated Bible, SAB, is a skeptical analysis of the Bible available for free online and in Plucker format for PalmPilots. ...


Other scholars argue that the two Genesis creation myths fit together to give a single account.[16] For example, some Christian apologists say the second creation myth does not put the creation of plants after the creation of man. (If it did, it would contradict the first creation myth.) According to this view, when Genesis 2:4 states that "no shrub of the field had yet appeared" before the creation of man, the words "shrub" and "field" refer not to plants, but to cultivated plants: this would remove the apparent contradiction, because plants could be cultivated only after man's creation.[17]


Some Bible translations, such as the King James Version, describe the creation of man and then say, "And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air" (Genesis 2:19, KJV). This suggests that the animals were created after man, creating a contradiction with the first creation myth. Other translations, such as the New International Version, describe the creation of man and then say, "Now the LORD God had [emphasis added] formed out of the ground all the beasts of the field and all the birds of the air" (Genesis 2:19, NIV). This suggests that the animals had already been created before man, harmonizing the second creation myth with the first. This page is about the version of the Bible; for the Harvey Danger album, see King James Version (album). ... The New International Version (NIV) is an English translation of the Christian Bible which is the most popular of the modern translations of the Bible made in the twentieth century. ...


Founding myths

Christian mythology of their society's founding would start with Jesus and his many teachings, and include the stories of Christian disciples starting the Christian Church and congregations in the first century. This might be considered the stories in the first four gospels. The heroes of the first Christian society would start with Jesus and those chosen by Jesus, the twelve apostles including Peter, John, James, as well as Paul and Mary (mother of Jesus). A founding myth is a story or myth surrounding the foundation of a nation-state. ... (1st century BC - 1st century - 2nd century - other centuries) The 1st century was that century which lasted from 1 to 99. ... Look up Paul in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Virgin Mary redirects here. ...


The central Christian narrative: Christ and the atonement

The theological concept of Jesus being born to atone for "original sin" is central to the Christian narrative. According to Christian theology, by disobeying God in the Garden of Eden, humanity acquired an ingrained flaw that keeps humans in a state of moral imperfection: this is generally called "original sin". “Original Sin” redirects here. ...


According to Saint Paul, humanity's sinful nature is the cause of all evils, including death: "Through one man, sin entered the world, and through sin, death" (Romans 5:12). According to the orthodox Christian view, Jesus Christ saved humanity from final death and damnation by dying for them. Most Christians believe that Christ's sacrifice supernaturally reversed death's power over humanity, proved when he was resurrected: according to Paul, "if the many died by the trespass of the one man, how much more did God's grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many" (Romans 5:15). For many Christians, the Christian eschatological myths about heaven and the resurrection of the dead are the conclusion of the doctrine of the atonement: people can enter heaven and rise from the dead because Christ's death and resurrection abolished the power of sin on humanity. St. ... Marcus Aurelius and members of the Imperial family offer sacrifice in gratitude for success against Germanic tribes: contemporary bas-relief, Capitoline Museum, Rome For other uses, see Sacrifice (disambiguation). ... Look up Resurrection in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...


This is not the place to discuss the complex theological theories about how the atonement works; here our concern is mythology. What follows is a brief survey of the myth of humanity's atonement through Christ's death and resurrection. For other uses, see Atonement (disambiguation). ...


Note that, by some academic definitions, a traditional story about a historical human character like Jesus would be a "legend", not a "myth".[18]


Atonement in canonical scripture

Saint Paul's theological writings, which make up much of the New Testament, lay out the basic framework of the atonement doctrine. However, Paul's letters contain relatively little mythology (narrative). The majority of narratives in the New Testament are in the Gospels and the Book of Revelation.


Although the Gospel stories do not lay out the atonement doctrine as fully as does Paul, they do have the story of the Last Supper, crucifixtion, death and resurrection, and atonement is suggested in the parables of Jesus in his final days. According to Matthew's gospel, at the Last Supper, Jesus calls his blood "the blood of the new covenant, which will be poured out for the forgiveness of many" (Matthew 26:28). John's gospel is especially rich in references to the atonement doctrine: Jesus speaks of himself as "the living bread that came down from heaven": "and the bread that I shall give is My flesh, which I shall give for the life of the world" (John 6:51). According to John's gospel, at the Last Supper, Jesus tells his disciples that his upcoming execution will be beneficial: "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit" (John 12:24). The Last Supper in Milan (1498), by Leonardo da Vinci. ...


Atonement in non-canonical literature

Due to its theological importance, the sacrifice and atonement narrative appears explicitly in many non-canonical writings. For instance, in Book 3 of Milton's Paradise Lost, the Son of God offers to become a man and die, thereby paying mankind's debt to God the Father. Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Wycliffe Tyndale · Luther · Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Pope · Archbishop of Canterbury Patriarch of Constantinople Christianity Portal This box:      Son of God is... In many religions, the supreme God is given the title and attributions of Father. ...


The Harrowing of Hell is a non-canonical myth extrapolated from the atonement doctrine. According to this story, Christ descended into the land of the dead after his crucifixion, rescuing the righteous souls that had been cut off from heaven due to the taint of original sin. The story of the harrowing was popular during the Middle Ages. An Old English poem called "The Harrowing of Hell" describes Christ breaking into Hell and rescuing the Old Testament patriarchs.[19] (The Harrowing is not the only explanation that Christians have put forth for the fate of the righteous who died before Christ accomplished the atonement.[20]) The Harrowing of Hell is a doctrine in Christian theology referenced in the Apostles Creed and the Athanasian Creed (Quicumque vult), which states that Jesus descended into Hell. ...


One example of the atonement theme in modern literature is the first of C. S. Lewis's Narnia novels, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. In the novel, a boy named Edmund is condemned to death by a White Witch, and the magical lion-king Aslan offers to die in Edmund's place, thereby saving him. Aslan's life is sacrificed on an alter, but returns to life again. Some readers believe that Aslan's self-sacrifice for Edmund is an allegory for the story of Christ's sacrifice for humanity; however, Lewis denied that the novel is a mere allegory.[21] This article is about the novel. ... Jadis, the White Witch is the key villain of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, the first published book in C. S. Lewiss Chronicles of Narnia series, and the second chronologically. ... For other uses, see Aslan (disambiguation). ...


The End: eschatological myths

Christian eschatological myths include stories of the afterlife: the narratives of Jesus Christ rising from the dead and now acting as a saviour of all generations of Christians, and stories of heaven and hell. Eschatological myths would also include the prophesies of end of the world and a new millennium in the Book of Revelation, and the story that Jesus will return to earth some day. Albrecht Dürer - Four horsemen of the Apocalypse This article is about the concept of the end of the world. ... Look up Resurrection in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Savior refers to a person who helps people achieve Salvation. ... End of the world may refer to: The ultimate fate of the universe, in cosmology The end of planet Earth, ultimate fate of planet Earth Risks to civilization, humans and planet Earth, future doomsday scenarios covering the end of civilization, humanity or the planet. ... Visions of John of Patmos, as depicted in the Très Riches Heures du Duc de Berry. ...


The major features of Christian eschatological mythology include afterlife beliefs, the Second Coming, the resurrection of the dead, and the final judgment.


Immediate afterlife (heaven and hell)

Jesus as the Good Shepherd, painting on ceiling of S. Callisto catacomb, early Christian art, mid 3rd century A.D.. Example of earliest Christian art showing a pastural scene in the afterlife.
Jesus as the Good Shepherd, painting on ceiling of S. Callisto catacomb, early Christian art, mid 3rd century A.D.. Example of earliest Christian art showing a pastural scene in the afterlife.

Most Christian denominations hold some belief in an immediate afterlife when people die. Christian scripture gives a few descriptions of an immediate afterlife and a heaven and hell; however, for the most part, both New and Old Testaments focus much more on the myth of a final bodily resurrection than any beliefs about a purely spiritual afterlife away from the body. Image File history File links Good_shepherd_02b_close. ... Image File history File links Good_shepherd_02b_close. ...


Much of the Old Testament does not express a belief in a personal afterlife of reward or punishment:

"All the dead go down to Sheol, and there they lie in sleep together–whether good or evil, rich or poor, slave or free (Job 3:11-19). It is described as a region "dark and deep," "the Pit," and "the land of forgetfulness," cut off from both God and human life above (Pss. 6:5; 88:3-12). Though in some texts Yahweh's power can reach down to Sheol (Ps. 139:8), the dominant idea is that the dead are abandoned forever. This idea of Sheol is negative in contrast to the world of life and light above, but there is no idea of judgment or of reward and punishment."[18]

Later Old Testament writings, particularly the works of the Hebrew prophets, describe a final resurrection of the dead, often accompanied by spiritual rewards and punishments:

"Many who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake. Some shall live forever; others shall be in everlasting horror and disgrace. But the wise shall shine brightly like the splendor of the firmament, and those who lead the many to justice shall be like the stars forever" (Daniel 12:2).

However, even here, the emphasis is not on an immediate afterlife in heaven or hell, but rather on a future bodily resurrection.


The New Testament also devotes little attention to an immediate afterlife. Its primary focus is the resurrection of the dead. Some New Testament passages seem to mention the (non-resurrected) dead experiencing some sort of afterlife (for example, the parable of Lazarus and Dives); yet the New Testament includes only a few myths about heaven and hell. Specifically, heaven is a place of peaceful residence, where Jesus goes to "prepare a home" or room for his disciples (John 14:2).[22] Drawing on scriptural imagery (John 10:7, John 10:11-14), many Christian narratives of heaven include a nice green pasture land and a meeting with a benevolent God. Some of the earliest Christian art depicts heaven as a green pasture where people are sheep led by Jesus as "the good shepherd" as in interpretation of heaven. Dives and Lazarus or Lazarus and Dives is a parable[1] attributed to Jesus that is reported only in the Gospel of Luke (Luke 16:19-16:31). ...


As the doctrines of heaven and hell and (Catholic) purgatory developed, non-canonical Christian literature began to develop an elaborate mythology about these locations. Dante's three-part Divine Comedy is a prime example of such afterlife mythology, describing Hell (in Inferno), Purgatory (in Purgatorio), and Heaven (in Paradiso). Myths of hell differ quite widely according to the denomination. Doctrine, from Latin doctrina, (compare doctor), means a body of teachings or instructions, taught principles or positions, as the body of teachings in a branch of knowledge or belief system. ... Illustration for Dantes Purgatorio (18), by Gustave Doré, an imaginative picturing of Purgatory. ...


Second Coming

The Second Coming of Christ holds a central place in Christian mythology. The Second Coming is the return of Christ to earth during the period of transformation preceding the end of this world and the establishment of the Kingdom of Heaven on earth. According to Matthew's gospel, when Jesus is on trial before the Roman and Jewish authorities, he claims, "In the future you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven."[23] For other uses, see Second Coming (disambiguation). ...


Resurrection and final judgment

Christian mythology incorporates the Old Testament's prophecies of a future resurrection of the dead. Like the Hebrew prophet Daniel (e.g., Daniel 12:2), the Christian Book of Revelation (among other New Testament scriptures) describes the resurrection: "The sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them; and they were judged, every one of them according to their deeds."[24] The righteous and/or faithful enjoy bliss in the earthly Kingdom of Heaven, but the evil and/or non-Christian are "cast into the lake of fire".[25]


The Kingdom of Heaven on earth

Christian eschatological myths feature a total world renovation after the final judgment. According to the Book of Revelation, God "will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or mourning, wailing or pain, for the old order has passed away".[26] According to Old and New Testament passages, a time of perfect peace and happiness is coming:

"They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. One nation will not raise the sword against another; nor will they train for war again."[27]

Certain scriptural passages even suggest that God will abolish the current natural laws in favor of immortality and total peace:

  • "Then the wolf will be a guest of the lamb, and the leopard will lie down with the kid. The calf and the young lion will browse together, with a little child to guide them. [...] There will be no harm or ruin on all my holy mountain, for the earth will be filled with knowledge of the Lord as water fills the sea."[28]
  • "On this mountain, [God] will destroy the veil that veils all peoples, the web that is woven over all nations: he will destroy Death forever."[29]
  • "The trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed."[30]
  • "Night will be no more, nor will they need light from lamp or sun, for the Lord God shall give them light, and they shall reign forever and ever."[31]

Millennialism and amillennialism

When Christianity was a new and persecuted religion, many Christians believed the end times were imminent.[32] Scholars debate whether Jesus was an apocalyptic preacher;[33] however, his early followers, "the group of Jews who accepted him as messiah in the years immediately after his death, understood him in primarily apocalyptic terms".[34] Prevalent in the early church and especially during periods of persecution,[35] this Christian belief in an imminent end is called "millennialism". (It takes its name from the thousand-year reign of Christ that, according to the Book of Revelation, will precede the final world renovation; similar beliefs in a coming paradise are found in other religions, and these phenomena are often also called "millennialism".[36]) Millennialism (or chiliasm), from millennium, which literally means thousand years, is primarily a belief expressed in some Christian denominations, and literature, that there will be a Golden Age or Paradise on Earth where Christ will reign prior to the final judgment and future eternal state, primarily derived from the book...


Millennialism comforted Christians during times of persecution, for it predicted an imminent deliverance from suffering.[37] From the perspective of millennialism, human action has little significance: millennialism is comforting precisely because it predicts that happiness is coming no matter what humans do: "The seeming triumph of Evil made up the apocalyptic syndrome which was to precede Christ's return and the millennium."[38]


However, as time went on, millennialism lost its appeal.[39] Christ had not returned immediately, as earlier Christians had predicted. Moreover, many Christians no longer needed the comfort that millennialism provided, for they were no longer persecuted: "With the triumph of the Church, the Kingdom of Heaven was already present on earth, and in a certain sense the old world had already been destroyed."[40] (Millennialism has revived during periods of historical stress,[41] and is currently popular among Evangelical Christians.[19])


In the Roman Church's condemnation of millennialism, Eliade sees "the first manifestation of the doctrine of [human] progress" in Christianity.[42] According to the amillennial view, Christ will indeed come again, ushering in a perfect Kingdom of Heaven on earth, but "the Kingdom of God is [already] present in the world today through the presence of the heavenly reign of Christ, the Bible, the Holy Spirit and Christianity".[20] Amillennialists do not feel "the eschatological tension" that persecution inspires; therefore, they interpret their eschatological myths either figuratively or as descriptions of far-off events rather than imminent ones.[43] Thus, after taking the amillennial position, the Church not only waited for God to renovate the world (as millennialists had) but also believed itself to be improving the world through human action.[44]


Time in Christian mythology

Linear, historical time

The religious historian Mircea Eliade argues that "Judaeo-Christianity makes an innovation of the first importance" in mythology.[45] In many other religions, all important events happened at the beginning of time: after those initial events, everything was fixed. In contrast, "in Judaeism, and above all in Christianity, divinity had manifested itself in History".[46] The myths and legends in the Bible are not limited to a far-off primordial age: instead, they form a long series of events stretching "out of the far past into an eternal future".[47] According to the Near Eastern specialist William A. Irwin, the Hebrew historians who authored the writings in the Old Testament saw history as "a comprehensive reality" raised "to the highest importance".[48] Mircea Eliade (March 13 [O.S. February 28] 1907 – April 22, 1986) was a Romanian historian of religion, fiction writer, philosopher, and professor at the University of Chicago. ... The introduction of this article does not provide enough context for readers unfamiliar with the subject. ...


In contrast, the myths of many traditional cultures present a cyclic or static view of time. In these cultures, all the "[important] history is limited to a few events that took place in the mythical times".[49] In other words, these cultures place events into two categories, the mythical age and the present, between which there is no continuity. Everything in the present is seen as a direct result of the mythical age:

"Just as modern man considers himself to be constituted by [all of] History, the man of the archaic societies declares that he is the result of [only] a certain number of mythical events."[50]

Because of this view, Eliade argues, members of many traditional societies see their lives as a constant repetition of mythical events, an "eternal return" to the mythical age: The Eternal return is, according to the theories of religious historian Mircea Eliade, a belief, expressed (sometimes implicitly but often explicitly) in religious behavior, in the ability to return to the mythical age, to become contemporary with the events described in ones myths. ...

"In imitating the exemplary acts of a god or of a mythical hero, or simply by recounting their adventures, the man of an archaic society detaches himself from profane time and magically re-enters the Great Time, the sacred time."[51]

According to Eliade, Christianity shares in this cyclic sense of time to an extent. "By the very fact that it is a religion", he argues, Christianity retains at least one "mythical aspect" — the repetition of mythical events through ritual.[52] Eliade gives a typical church service as an example:

"Just as a church constitutes a break in plane in the profane space of a modern city, [so] the service celebrated inside [the church] marks a break in profane temporal duration. It is no longer today's historical time that is present—the time that is experienced, for example, in the adjacent streets—but the time in which the historical existence of Jesus Christ occurred, the time sanctified by his preaching, by his passion, death, and resurrection."[53]

However, the world-shaping mythical events that Christians celebrate are not limited to a primordial age. This doesn't mean that all historical events are significant,[54] but significant events are interspersed throughout the length of history, and they are not simply repetitions of each other: "The fall of Jerusalem does not repeat the fall of Samaria: the ruin of Jerusalem presents a new historic theophany, another 'wrath' of Jahveh."[55] In the Christianity, "time is no longer [only] the circular Time of the Eternal Return; it has become linear and irreversible Time".[56] Look up theophany in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...


Christian mythology and "progress"

A number of scholars believe that the Bible's sense of linear time promoted the notion of "progress". According to this view, if primordial events haven't permanently determined the world's condition, mankind can be "saved" and progress is possible. According to Irwin, from the perspective of the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament), "history is a tale of progress".[57] Christianity inherited the Hebrew sense of history through the Old Testament. Thus, although most Christians believe that human nature is inherently "fallen" (see original sin) and cannot become perfected without divine grace, they do believe that the world can and will change for the better, either through human and divine action or through divine action alone. Progress can refer to: The idea of a process in which societies or individuals become better or more modern (technologically and/or socially). ... 11th century manuscript of the Hebrew Bible with Targum Hebrew Bible is a term that refers to the common portions of the Jewish canon and the Christian canons. ... “Original Sin” redirects here. ...


Some scholars believe that this "progressive view of cosmic history" originated with Zoroastrianism, passing to Judaism and, thus, to Christianity.[58] Zoroastrianism is the religion and philosophy based on the teachings ascribed to the prophet Zoroaster (Zarathustra, Zartosht). ...


Controversy on the word "myth"

Although the academic use of the word "myth" is generally not supposed to imply falsehood, many Christians feel uncomfortable with the label "mythology" when it is applied to Christian tradition. This discomfort has its roots in Christian history. Early Christian theologians used the word "myth" to mean "falsehood", and it was with this meaning that the word passed into popular English usage.[59] Hence, some Christians take offense when their own sacred stories are designated as "myths": they believe that such a designation implies that the stories are false.


Some Christians have no problem with the use of the word "myth" to designate the narrative component of religion. For instance, C.S. Lewis used the expression "true myth" to describe the story of Jesus Christ, to emphasize it is perceived as both myth and truth: he wrote, Clive Staples Lewis (November 29, 1898 – November 22, 1963), commonly referred to as C. S. Lewis, was an author and scholar. ...

"The story of Christ is simply a true myth: a myth working on us in the same way as the others, but with this tremendous difference that it really happened: and one must be content to accept it in the same way, remembering that it is God's myth where the others are men's myths."[21]

In such cases, Christian writers and theologians use the term "myth" without its popular implication of falsehood. The Catholic priest Father Andrew Greeley commented on this point: The Rev. ...

"Many Christians have objected to my use of this word [myth] even when I define it specifically. They are terrified by a word which may even have a slight suggestion of fantasy. However, my usage is the one that is common among historians of religion, literary critics, and social scientists. It is a valuable and helpful usage; there is no other word which conveys what these scholarly traditions mean when they refer to myth. The Christian would be well advised to get over his fear of the word and appreciate how important a tool it can be for understanding the content of his faith."[60]

See also: religion and mythology

Religion and mythology differ, but have overlapping aspects. ...

Mythology in secular Christmas stories

Thomas Nast immortalized Santa Claus with an illustration for the January 3, 1863 issue of Harper's Weekly. The first Santa Claus appeared as a small part of a large illustration titled "A Christmas Furlough" in which Nast set aside his regular news and political coverage to do a Santa Claus drawing. This Santa was a man dressed up handing out gifts to Union soldiers.
Thomas Nast immortalized Santa Claus with an illustration for the January 3, 1863 issue of Harper's Weekly. The first Santa Claus appeared as a small part of a large illustration titled "A Christmas Furlough" in which Nast set aside his regular news and political coverage to do a Santa Claus drawing. This Santa was a man dressed up handing out gifts to Union soldiers.

Christmas-themed popular music, television, and cinema: Image File history File links Summary Thomas Nast immortalized Santa Claus with an illustration for the January 3, 1863 issue of Harpers Weekly The first Santa Claus appeared as a small part of a large illustration titled A Christmas Furlough in which Nast set aside his regular news and... Image File history File links Summary Thomas Nast immortalized Santa Claus with an illustration for the January 3, 1863 issue of Harpers Weekly The first Santa Claus appeared as a small part of a large illustration titled A Christmas Furlough in which Nast set aside his regular news and...


Santa Claus is the English name for the Christian Saint Nicholas, secularized in popular culture as an old man with supernatural powers living at the North Pole, much like magic and powerful characters in mythology: Santa Claus has supernatural powers and uses them to magnanimously deliver gifts to children around the world. Santa was based on the legends of Saint Nicholas. Santa was given an amplified mythological identity in the Clement Moore poem Twas The Night Before Christmas. Comparative mythologies have also noted the ancient Germanic myths of Thor driving a cart led by goats in the sky (which led to the folklore of the Yule Goat) is like Santa driving a sleigh led by reindeers in the sky, so think Santa may stem from both Christian and pre-Christian Germanic mythology. A typical depiction of Santa Claus. ... For other uses, see Nicholas. ... For other uses, see Nicholas. ... Clement Clarke Moore, (July 15, 1779 - July 10, 1863), was a professor at New York Citys General Theological Seminary (built on land donated by his father) who, in an 1836 reprint of A Visit From St. ... Cover of a 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith. ... For other uses, see Thor (disambiguation). ... A Yule Goat from Uppland, Sweden. ...


In the 1950s, several Christmas cartoons emerged that deliberately adopt elements of Christian stories to convey the "true meaning of Christmas" in allegorical terms.


An early film, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (TV special) based on a Gene Autry song, involved a rejected and mocked reindeer that ends up leading the other reindeer through the help of a misfit elf and misfit toys. 2005 DVD release showing characters from the film. ... Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is a popular Christmas story that has been told in numerous forms including songs and theatrical and television films. ...


Similarly, Frosty the Snowman contains several Christian motifs, is the story of a snowman who comes to life for a time, melts (dies) but also reassures his childlike followers that he will "be back again some day." The television special developed from this song invents the concept of Frosty being made from "Christmas snow" which entails that he can never completely melt away and thus has an eternal essence. Frosty the Snowman is a popular Christmas song written by Steve Jack Rollins and Steve Nelson in 1950. ...


Following these early television Christmas specials, there have been countless other Christmas TV specials and movies produced for the "holiday season" that are not explicitly Christian but seek to describe "true spirit of Christmas" beliefs, such as "togetherness," "being with family," charitable acts, and belief that even bad people or situations can be redeemed. While many sundry examples of Christmas films exist, examples of films with Christian mythical elements include: How the Grinch Stole Christmas! (film), A Charlie Brown Christmas, and various adaptations of A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. With the exception of A Charlie Brown Christmas, which features a reading from the Gospels by Linus, they have little to do with the biblical Christmas. Dr. Seuss How the Grinch Stole Christmas! is a 2000 live-action film, based on the 1957 book by Dr. Seuss. ... For the album, see A Charlie Brown Christmas (album). ... A Christmas Carol in Prose, Being a Ghost Story of Christmas (commonly known as A Christmas Carol ) is what Charles Dickens described as his little Christmas Book and was first published on December 19, 1843 with illustrations by John Leech. ... “Dickens” redirects here. ... For the genre of Christian-themed music, see gospel music. ... Linus awaits the Great Pumpkin. ...


These conceptions of the "true meaning of Christmas" are also sung about in Christmas albums.


Comparative mythology

Comparative mythology is the study of similarities and connections between the myths of different cultures. For instance, the Judeo-Christian story of Noah and the flood has similarities to flood stories told worldwide.[61] (See Jewish mythology for greater detail.) This section contains a brief survey of some major parallels between Christian mythology and other mythologies. For the sake of brevity, myths that Christianity shares with Judaism (e.g., Old Testament stories) are not covered here. For comparative mythology related to Judeo-Christian myths, see Jewish mythology. Comparative mythology, related to comparative religion, is a field of study which is technically part of anthropology but more usually regarded as part of the subject of ancient history. ... Jewish mythology is a body of stories that explains or symbolizes Jewish beliefs. ... Jewish mythology is a body of stories that explains or symbolizes Jewish beliefs. ...


Christ and the "Dying Gods"

Many world myths feature a god who dies and is resurrected, or who descends to hell and comes back—the mytheme is called the descent to the underworld. Such tales are very common in the Near East: "It is simply a fact—deal with it how you will—that the mythology [...] of the dead and resurrected god has been known for millenniums to the neolithic and post-neolithic Levant."[62] For example, the Phrygian god Attis castrates himself and dies, but Zeus either resurrects or eternally preserves the body, and in some versions the resurrected Attis ascends to heaven.[63] Similar myths exist in other parts of the world: a myth from Ceram features a miraculously-conceived girl named Hainuwele who is unjustly killed but is resurrected in the form of tubers, which the Ceramese see as Hainuwele's flesh and eat as their staple food.[64] The category life-death-rebirth deity also known as a dying-and-rising god is a convenient means of classifying the many divinities in world mythology who are born, suffer death or an eclipse or other death-like experience, pass a phase in the underworld among the dead, and are... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with life-death-rebirth deity. ... Phrygian can refer to: A person from Phrygia The Phrygian language This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... Attis wearing the Phrygian cap. ... Seram (formerly Ceram, also called Seran or Serang) is an island in the Maluku Indonesia. ... Hainuwele, The Coconut Girl, is a figure from Indonesian folklore. ...


Such pagan myths seemed to suggest that the Christ story was simply the latest version of a widespread pagan myth. Some early Christians responded by arguing that Satan had inspired pseudo-Christian myths before Christianity had even appeared, to mislead pagans into disbelieving in Christ when he arrived:

"They admitted, indeed, that in point of time Christ was the junior deity, but they triumphantly demonstrated his real seniority by falling back on the subtlety of Satan, who on so important an occasion had surpassed himself by inverting the usual order of nature."[65]

Justin Martyr, one of the early church Fathers, makes essentially this argument in his First Apology.[66] The more recent writer C. S. Lewis regarded the pagan "dying gods" as premonitions in the human mind of the Christ story that was to come.[22] There have been some modern attempts to discredit the notion of a general "dying god" category of which Christ is a member.[67] Justin Martyr (also Justin the Martyr, Justin of Caesarea, Justin the Philosopher) (100–165) was an early Christian apologist and saint. ...

See also: Jesus Christ and comparative mythology

The study of Jesus from a mythographical perspective is the examination of the narrative of Jesus, the Christ (the Anointed) of the gospels, Christian theology and folk Christianity as a central part of Christian mythology. ...

Other connections

In Buddhist mythology, the demon Mara tries to distract the historical Buddha, Siddhartha Gautama, before he can reach enlightenment. Huston Smith, a professor of philosophy and a writer on comparative religion, notes the similarity between Mara's temptation of the Buddha before his ministry and Satan's temptation of Christ before his ministry.[68] Buddhist mythology is a mythology within the Buddhism belief system. ... An aniconic representation of Maras assault on the Buddha, 2nd century CE, Amaravati (India). ... Standing Buddha, ancient region of Gandhara, northern Pakistan, 1st century CE. Gautama Buddha was a South Asian spiritual leader who lived between approximately 563 BCE and 483 BCE. Born Siddhartha Gautama in Sanskrit, a name meaning descendant of Gotama whose aims are achieved/who is efficacious in achieving aims, he... Huston Cummings Smith (born May 31, 1919) is among the preeminent religious studies scholars in the United States. ...


In the Book of Revelation, the author sees a vision of a pregnant woman in the sky being pursued by a huge red dragon. The dragon tries to devour her child when she gives birth, but the child is "caught up to God and his throne". This appears to be an allegory for the triumph of Christianity: the child presumably represents Christ; the woman may represent God's people of the Old and New Testaments (who produced Christ); and the Dragon symbolizes Satan, who opposes Christ.[69] According to Catholic scholars, the images used in this allegory may have been inspired by pagan mythology:

"This corresponds to a widespread myth throughout the ancient world that a goddess pregnant with a savior was pursued by a horrible monster; by miraculous intervention, she bore a son who then killed the monster."[70]

History

From Roman Empire to Europe

After Christian theology was accepted by the Roman Empire, promoted by St. Augustine in the 5th century, Christian mythology began to predominate the Roman Empire. Later the theology was carried north by Charlemagne and the Frankish people, and Christian themes began to weave into the framework of European mythologies (Eliade 1963:162-181). The pre-Christian (Germanic and Celtic mythology that were native to the tribes of Northern Europe were denounced and submerged, while saint myths, Mary stories, Crusade myths, and other Christian myths took their place. However, pre-Christian myths never went entirely away, they mingled with the (Roman Catholic) Christian framework to form new stories, like myths of the mythological kings and saints and miracles, for example (Eliade 1963:162-181). Stories such as that of Beowulf and Icelandic, Norse, and Germanic sagas were reinterpreted somewhat, and given Christian meanings. The legend of King Arthur and the quest for the Holy Grail is a striking example (Treharne 1971). The thrust of incorporation took on one of two directions. When Christianity was on the advance, pagan myths were Christianized; when it was in retreat, Bible stories and Christian saints lost their mythological importance to the culture. “Augustinus” redirects here. ... Europe in 450 The 5th century is the period from 401 to 500 in accordance with the Julian calendar in the Christian Era. ... Charlemagne (left) and Pippin the Hunchback. ... Statue of Charlemagne (also called Karl der Große, Charles the Great) in Frankfurt, Germany. ... The word mythology (from the Greek μυολογία mythología, from mythologein to relate myths, from mythos, meaning a narrative, and logos, meaning speech or argument) literally means the (oral) retelling of myths – stories that a particular culture believes to be true and that use the supernatural to interpret natural events and... Celtic mythology is the mythology of Celtic polytheism, apparently the religion of the Iron Age Celts. ... This article is about the medieval crusades. ... King Arthur from The Book of Knowledge, The Grolier Society, 1911 A mythological king is an archetype in mythology. ... General definition of saint In general, the term Saint refers to someone who is exceptionally virtuous and holy. ... A miracle, derived from the old Latin word miraculum meaning something wonderful, is a striking interposition of divine intervention by God in the universe by which the ordinary course and operation of Nature is overruled, suspended, or modified. ... This article is about the epic poem. ... A bronze Arthur in plate armour with visor raised and with jousting shield wearing Kastenbrust armour (early 15th century) by Peter Vischer, typical of later anachronistic depictions of Arthur. ... For other uses, see Holy Grail (disambiguation). ...


Since Enlightenment

Since the end of the eighteenth century, the biblical stories have lost some of their mythological basis to western society, owing to the scepticism of the Enlightenment, nineteenth-century freethinking, and twentieth century modernism. Most westerners no longer found Christianity to be their primary imaginative and mythological framework by which they understand the world. However other scholars believe mythology is in our psyche, and that mythical influences of Christianity are in many of our ideals, for example the Judeo-Christian idea of an after-life and heaven (Eliade 1963:184). The book Virtual Faith: The Irreverent Spiritual Quest of Generation X by Tom Beaudoin explores the premise that Christian mythology is present in the mythologies of pop-culture, such as Madonna's Like a Prayer or Soundgarden's Black Hole Sun. Modern myths are strong in comic book stories (as stories of culture heroes) and detective novels as myths of good versus evil (Eliade 1963:185). The Age of Enlightenment (French: Siècle des Lumières, German: Aufklärung) refers to eighteenth century in European and American philosophy, or the longer period including the Age of Reason. ... Freethought is a characteristic of individuals whose opinions are formed on the basis of an understanding and rejection of tradition, authority or established belief. ... For Christian theological modernism, see Liberal Christianity and Modernism (Roman Catholicism). ... This article is about the album. ... Black Hole Sun is a song by 1990s grunge band Soundgarden. ... A culture hero is a historical or mythological hero who changes the world through invention or discovery. ...


Certain groups within Western society still retain a strong element of Christian mythology in their understanding of life. It is also true that Christian myths often inform law and the ideals within different Western societies, but the idea of a Christendom that permeates all aspects of life is no longer applicable. This T-and-O map, which abstracts the known world to a cross inscribed within an orb, remakes geography in the service of Christian iconography. ...


Influence on Western progressivism

Christian mythology, which presents a linear, progressive view of history, has deeply influenced the West's emphasis on progress. Even supposedly secular or political movements such as Marxism and Nazism "announce the end of this world and the beginning of an age of plenty and bliss".[71] Mircea Eliade believes movements such as Marxism would have been impossible without the conceptual framework Christian mythology provided: "Marx turns to his own account the Judaeo-Christian eschatological hope of an absolute goal of History."[72]


Likewise, Joseph Campbell sees Marx's theory of history as a "parody" of Judeo-Christian mythology.[73] According to Campbell, the Zoroastrian, Jewish, and Christian myth of the final triumph of good over evil appears repeatedly in Western intellectual, political, and spiritual movements:

"In the end, which is inevitable, the dark and evil power [...] is to be destroyed forever in a crisis of world renovation to which all history tends—and to the realization of which every individual is categorically summoned."[74]

Notes

  1. ^ Segal, p. 5
  2. ^ Zong In-Sob
  3. ^ Segal, p. 5
  4. ^ Segal, p. 5
  5. ^ Eliade, Myth and Reality, p. 21
  6. ^ Segal, p. 5; Zong In-Sob, p. xxi; [1]
  7. ^ Eliade, Myth and Reality, p. 66.
  8. ^ Eliade, Myth and Reality.
  9. ^ Severin, Timothy (April 1982). The Brendan Voyage. McGraw-Hill. ISNB 0070563357. 
  10. ^ A letter to a child fan named Patricia, printed in The Essential C. S. Lewis.
  11. ^ Per Eliade's analysis, Christ lived in historical time, not during the creation of the world. Eliade also says, "But we should add that, for the Christian, time begins anew with the birth of Christ, for the Incarnation establishes a new situation of man in the cosmos" (The Sacred and the Profane, p. 111).
  12. ^ Exodus 20:8-11
  13. ^ Genesis 3:24
  14. ^ Campbell, p. 103-4; Genesis 2 - The BEST of the Story; Are There Two Creation Accounts in Genesis?
  15. ^ "This view of Scripture is not the exclusive property of the radically liberal theologians; it has made its presence felt in 'conservative' circles as well. [...] By the end of the century numerous biblical commentators had gravitated to this liberal concept."[2]. "Of course, the Documentary Hypothesis—all that 'two creation stories business'—is the current consensus of an enormous number of scholars, and is used in almost every mainline Catholic commentary produced recently."[3]
  16. ^ For a number of online sources that make this argument, see the following: Genesis 2 - The BEST of the Story, Are There Two Creation Accounts in Genesis?, Why are there two different Creation accounts in Genesis chapters 1-2?, and Creation Account, Times Two, or, Was the Author of Genesis 1-2 a Flaming Knucklehead?
  17. ^ "The words rendered plant, field, and grew, never occur in the first chapter; they are terms expressive of the produce of labour and cultivation; so that the historian evidently means that no cultivated land and no vegetables fit for the use of man were yet in existence on the earth" (Browne, 1981, 1:39, quoted in Are There Two Creation Accounts in Genesis?). "The Hebrew word here translated 'field' is 'Sadeh.' It refers to a smaller piece of land or to a cultivated field. [...] While the vegetation of Genesis 1:11-12 was of the general sort, the vegetation of Genesis 2:5, 8-9 is of a very specific kind."Why are there two different Creation accounts in Genesis chapters 1-2?
  18. ^ For some examples of this distinction between "legend" and "myth", see <http://falcon.jmu.edu/~ramseyil/tradmays.htm> and (for the classic distinction drawn by professional folklorists) <http://encarta.msn.com/text_761556135__1/Folktales.html>.
  19. ^ Russell, p. 136-38
  20. ^ For example, according to Russell, p. 205, the medieval scholastic theologian Abelard believed "that the just pagans had all been illuminated and saved by the Word during their lives". Russell also suggests another possible explanation that the scholastic theologians did not consider: "Christ died for all human beings wherever they are in space or time. His sacrifice was built into the plan of salvation for all eternity, and it affects those who come after the incarnation no more than those who came before" (pp. 205-6).
  21. ^ A letter to a child fan named Patricia, printed in The Essential C. S. Lewis.
  22. ^ "In My Father's house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you" - Jesus. John 14:2 NASB 1995.
  23. ^ Matthew 26:64
  24. ^ Revelation 20:13
  25. ^ Revelation 20:15
  26. ^ Revelation 21:4
  27. ^ Isaiah 2:4
  28. ^ Isaiah 11:6, 9
  29. ^ Isaiah 25:7-8
  30. ^ 1 Corinthians 15:52
  31. ^ Revelation 22:5
  32. ^ Eliade, Myth and Reality, p. 67
  33. ^ McGinn, p. 35
  34. ^ McGinn, p. 36
  35. ^ Eliade, Myth and Reality, p. 67; McGinn, p. 60
  36. ^ "millennialism"; Eliade, p. 67-72
  37. ^ "millennialism"; Eliade, p. 67
  38. ^ Eliade, p. 67
  39. ^ According to Eliade, Myth and Reality, p. 67: "After becoming the official religion of the Roman Empire, Christianity condemned millennialism as heretical, although illustrious Fathers had professed it in the past. [...] The eschaton was no longer the imminent event that it had been during the persecutions." According to ReligiousTolerance.org, the specific variant of millennialism condemned was "Historical Premillennialism", which many Christians believed in during the first 3 centuries C.E.; the Roman Church's official anti-millennial stance is called "Amillennialism", and was largely established by Saint Augustine.[4] Even some of the Church Fathers who accepted historical premillennialism doubted the imminence of the End, as Christ's coming seemed less and less likely to be immediate. According to McGinn, p. 62: "Like both Irenaeus and Hippolytus, Tertullian thought (at least for most of his career) that the end was not near."
  40. ^ Eliade, Myth and Reality, p. 68
  41. ^ Eliade, Myth and Reality, p. 68
  42. ^ Eliade, Myth and Reality, p. 68
  43. ^ According to ReligiousTolerance.org, Amillennialists interpret the myth of Christ's Second Coming literally, although they do not expect Christ to come soon, and they often interpret the Antichrist figuratively.[5]
  44. ^ Eliade, Myth and Reality, p. 68
  45. ^ Eliade, Myth and Reality, p. 64
  46. ^ Eliade, Myths, Dreams, and Mysteries, p. 153
  47. ^ Irwin, p. 321
  48. ^ Irwin, p. 321
  49. ^ Eliade, Myths, Dreams, and Mysteries, p. 190
  50. ^ Eliade, Myth and Reality, pp. 11-12
  51. ^ Eliade, Myths, Dreams, and Mysteries, p. 23
  52. ^ Eliade, Myth and Reality, pp. 168-69
  53. ^ Eliade, The Sacred and the Profane, p. 72
  54. ^ Myths, Dreams, and Mysteries, p. 153
  55. ^ Eliade, Myths, Dreams, and Mysteries, p. 152
  56. ^ Eliade, Myth and Reality, p. 65
  57. ^ Irwin, p. 323
  58. ^ Campbell, p. 190-92
  59. ^ Eliade, Myth and Reality, pp. 162; Eliade, Myths, Dreams and Mysteries, pp. 23.
  60. ^ Greeley, Myths of Religion; quoted in Bierlein 1994, pp. 304-5.
  61. ^ The ancient Mesopotamians had a myth in which the gods sent a flood to punish mortals (The Epic of Gilgamesh, p. 108-13). The flood mytheme also appears, for instance, in Hindu mythology, in the story of Matsya the fish (Translation of the Hindu scripture Matsya 1:11-35 in Classical Hindu Mythology, p. 71-74).
  62. ^ Campbell, p. 44
  63. ^ See the article on "Cybele and Attis" at About.com: <http://ancienthistory.about.com/cs/nemythology/a/cybeleattis.htm>. For the fullest account of the myth, see the passage on Arnobius's version in Evgueni A. Tortchinov's essay here.
  64. ^ Eliade, Myth and Reality, p. 103-7. See a summary of the myth here.
  65. ^ Frazer, p. 361
  66. ^ Justin Martyr, First Apology, chapter 54: "Having heard it proclaimed through the prophets that the Christ was to come [...] [the demons] put forward many to be called sons of Jupiter, under the impression that they would be able to produce in men the idea that the things which were said with regard to Christ were mere marvellous tales, like the things which were said by the poets."[6]
  67. ^ See the following examples: [7], [8] (the section on "Sky God, Earth Mother, Dying and Rising"), [9], [10]
  68. ^ Smith, p. 9
  69. ^ footnote on Revelation 12:1-6 in The New American Bible, St Joseph Edition
  70. ^ footnote on Revelation 12:1-6 in The New American Bible, St Joseph Edition. The footnote does not specify which pagan myths it means.
  71. ^ Eliade, Myth and Reality, p. 69
  72. ^ Eliade, Myths, Dreams, and Mysteries, p. 26
  73. ^ Campbell, p. 200-1
  74. ^ Campbell, p. 201

Tim Severin was born in India in 1940. ... Scholastic is the official student publication of the University of Notre Dame. ... Pierre Abélard (in English, Peter Abelard) or Abailard (1079 - April 21, 1142) was a French scholastic philosopher. ... St. ... For other uses, see Second Coming (disambiguation). ... For the Friedrich Nietzsche book, see The Antichrist. ... This article is about great floods. ... In the study of mythology, a mytheme is an irreducible nugget of myth, an unchanging element, similar to a cultural meme, one that is always found shared with other, related mythemes and reassembled in various ways—bundled was Claude Lévi-Strausss image— or linked in more complicated relationships... Hindu mythology is a term used by modern scholarship for a large body of Indian literature that details the lives and times of legendary personalities, deities and divine incarnations on earth interspersed with often large sections of philosophical and ethical discourse. ... Incarnation of Vishnu as a Fish, from a devotional text. ...

Sources

  • Irwin, William A. "The Hebrews". (Frankfort et al. The Intellectual Adventure of Ancient Man. Chicago: U. of Chicago P., 1977. pp. 221-360.)
  • Campbell, Joseph. The Masks of God: Occidental Mythology. NY: Penguin Compass, 1991.
  • Severin, Timothy. The Brendan Voyage. April 1982. McGraw-Hill. ISNB 0070563357.
  • Bierlein, J.F. Parallel Myths. New York: Ballantine, 1994.
  • Eliade, Mircea
    • Myth and Reality. New York: Harper & Row, 1968. (See esp. Section IX "Survivals and Camouflages of Myths - Christianity and Mythology" through "Myths and Mass Media")
    • Myths, Dreams and Mysteries. New York: Harper & Row, 1967.
    • The Sacred and the Profane. NY: Harper & Row, 1961.
  • Beaudoin, Tom. Virtual Faith: The Irreverent Spiritual Quest of Generation X.
  • Every, George, Christian Mythology
  • Segal, Robert A. Myth: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2004.
  • Zong In-Sob. Folk Tales From Korea. Elizabeth: Hollym International, 1982.
  • Lewis, C. S. The Essential C. S. Lewis. Ed. Lyle W. Dorsett. NY: Simon & Schuster, 1996.
  • Zaehner, R. C. The Dawn and Twilight of Zoroastrianism. NY: G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1961.
  • McGinn, Bernard. Antichrist: Two Thousand Years of the Human Fascination with Evil. NY: HarperCollins, 1994.
  • Russell, Jeffrey Burton. Lucifer: The Devil in the Middle Ages. Ithaca: Cornell UP, 1986.
  • "millennialism." Encyclopædia Britannica. 2007. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. 31 July 2007 <http://www.britannica.com/eb/article-9052706>.
  • Smith, Huston. Buddhism: A Concise Introduction. HarperOne, 2004.
  • New American Bible. St Joseph Edition. NY: Catholic Publishing Co.
  • The Epic of Gilgamesh. Trans. N. K. Sandars. NY: Penguin, 1960.
  • Classical Hindu Mythology. Ed. and trans. Cornelia Dimmitt and J.A.B. van Buitenen. Philadelphia: Temple UP, 1978.

Mircea Eliade (March 13 [O.S. February 28] 1907 – April 22, 1986) was a Romanian historian of religion, fiction writer, philosopher, and professor at the University of Chicago. ...

See also

Religion and mythology differ, but have overlapping aspects. ... Noah and the baptismal flood of the Old Testament (top panel) is typographically linked (prefigured) by the baptism of Jesus in the New Testament (bottom panel). ... Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations · Other religions Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Luther Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Archbishop of Canterbury · Catholic Pope Coptic Pope · Ecumenical Patriarch Christianity Portal This box:      Christian mysticism... The study of Jesus from a mythographical perspective is the examination of the narrative of Jesus, the Christ (the Anointed) of the gospels, Christian theology and folk Christianity as a central part of Christian mythology. ... This article is about the hypothesis of Jesus as a myth. ... Joseph of Arimathea by Pietro Perugino. ... “Abulafia” redirects here. ... Dr. George Sidney Arundale (1 December 1878 in Surrey, England — 12 August 1945 in Adyar, India) was a theosophist, freemason, president of the Theosophical Society Adyar and bishop of the Liberal Catholic Church. ... C.W. Leadbeater (1847 or 1854-1934), English clergyman and Theosophical author, contributed to world thought mostly through his work as a clairvoyant. ...

External links

  • Louis A. Markos in Myth Matters, from Christianity Today magazine. Quote: "just as Christ came not to abolish the Law but to fulfill it, so he came not to put an end to myth but to take all that is most essential in the myth up into himself and make it real."
  • Mark Filiatreau in A Master of Imaginative Fiction, from BreakPoint Online. Quote: "Classics of Christian Myth -- MacDonald’s key mythic works include five full-length books, which we’ll introduce here."
  • Abstract of the Collected Works of C. G. Jung, from The CG Jung page. Quote: "The astrological characteristics of the fish are seen to contain the essential components of the Christian myth."
  • James W. Marchand in Christian Parallels to Norse Myth, from the Center for Advanced Study, University of Illinois. Quote: "This reluctance to weigh fairly the possibility of the influence of Christian myth on Norse myth has had a number of unfortunate consequences. The most unfortunate is the resolute refusal on the part of most students of Norse myth to look at medieval Christian myth."

  Results from FactBites:
 
Mythology (700 words)
Mythology figures prominently in most religions, and most mythology is tied to at least one religion.
Stories from scripture are usually not referred to as mythology except in a pejorative sense, but one can speak of a Jewish mythology, a Christian mythology, or an Islamic mythology, in which one describes the mythic elements within these faiths without speaking to the veracity of the faith's tenets or claims about its history.
Mythology is the title of a 1942 work by Edith Hamilton detailing Greek, Roman, and Norse mythology with their sources.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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