Archaic vs Myth

We have chosen a Greek myth about world creation from the book “Classic Myth” by Barry B. Powell. Chaos and Gaia tell us a story about creation of the world (Powell 2006, 124). We know that out of original Chaos there were created Eros and Gaia. Later, Gaia as the Mother Earth is seen to give birth to Uranos who is the Sky God. After their unification, twelve Titans are born as well as three monsters and three Cyclopes.

Once Titans are pushed by Uranos to Gaia’s womb, the youngest Titan Cronus is persuaded to avenge them. He cuts off his father’s genitals and throws them into sea where they are turned into foam from which Aphrodite is born (Powell 2006, 132). We believe that mythological vision of Chaos was typical to ancient Greek society due to the presented images of female, preserving all elements of love, patience, passion and beauty.

From this myth we understand that Chaos as a Greek God denotes unfathomable space of human origin. Chaos is a live God who gives rise to Gaia. This way, in mythological sense, Chaos is reflected to arise all things that are divine and earthly far beyond the physical space. Even in his teachings Virgil spoke about Chaos as the one who “was rehearsing the countless loves of the gods” (Powell 2001, 19). Serving as unfathomable space, it only promoted love through a beautiful Aphrodite.

On the contrary, archaic or historical sense of Chaos was understood differently within Greek society. Cosmologically, Chaos was understood as preliminary emptiness from which things arose and later gained humane elements. Afterwards, Greeks were born as conscious individuals. When referring to works of Ovid, we find his traditional historic explanation of Chaos. He believed that Chaos was “a confused mass containing the elements of all things that were formed out of it” (Powell 2001, 129). This way, he proved that from disordered mass, ordered one can be created.

The relevance of Chaos and Aphrodite to daily lives of women is obvious. According to ancient historian Oppian, Chaos was created to establish the ordinances of wedded love and order the ceremonies of the marriage bed. The final offspring carried by Chaos through generations was Aphrodite. The same was investigated in the ancient Greek society and history, where the role of woman in creating families was more than essential. Moreover, women were precious feminine humans given to preserve feelings and love within relationships. That is why, we find similarity in dubious functions of women: to express love and carry the flame in families, raising children and taking care of household (Morris 2000, 71).

Additionally, from the myth we find out that Aphrodite was born to be significant. Through union with Ares she preserves love and her as Powell states, “Her association with foaming genitals, or sperm, is appropriate for a goddess of love.” One more significant point taken from the myth thus reflected in real ancient Greek society was woman’s dedication (Morris 2000, 87).

When men were at war women were frequently noticed …
Posted by: Martin Kamaka

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