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Encyclopedia > Sun worship

A solar deity is a deity who represents the Sun. People have worshipped the Sun and solar deities for all of recorded history. Hence, many beliefs and legends have been formed around this worship. Although many sources contend that solar deities are generally male, and the brother, father, husband and/or enemy of the lunar deity (usually female), this is not cross-culturally upheld, as sun goddesses are found on every continent. The dualism of sun/male/light and moon/female/darkness is indeed found in European traditions that derive from Orphic and Gnostic philosophies, but many other European cultures saw the sun as a maternal force, as did many other cultures. In some cultures, such as the Scandinavian, some scholars have misread the primary texts in order to declare a male divinity the "sun god."

Here is a list of solar deities:

See also Phoenix, Stonehenge

Chinese Mythology

Unlike many other cultures, Chinese people do not personify nor worship the Sun or the Moon. The most likely reason is the heavy influence of Taoism and I Ching in Chinese culture because the Moon represents Yin and the Sun represent Yang which are the basis of everything in nature.

In Chinese mythology (cosmology), there were nine suns in the sky in the beginning. The world was so hot that nothing grew. A hero called Hou Yi (后毅) shot down eight of them with bow and arrows. The world became better ever since. In another myth, solar eclipse was caused by the dog of heaven biting off a piece of the sun. There was a tradition in China to hit pots and pans during a solar eclipse to drive away the "dog".

External Links

  Results from FactBites:
Solar deity - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (729 words)
The Trundholm Sun Chariot pulled by a horse is believed to be a sculpture illustrating an important part of Nordic Bronze Age mythology.
Sun worship is a possible origin of henotheism and ultimately monotheism.
In Japanese mythology, the sun goddess Amaterasu is angered by the behavior of her brother, Susanoo, and hides herself in a cave, plunging the world into darkness.
  More results at FactBites »



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