Five classmates and I are doing a mock newspaper summarizing what we’ve learned in Mythology so far. I’m the editor, so I’m writing the editorials and letters to the editor, as well as doing the interview. Unless some of my readers want to write letters to the editor. ^_^ *hinthint*
Creation: Fact or Fiction?
By Editor Nicholas Kleimeier
We all know the story the bards tell of creation.
‘In the beginning there was Chaos, and out of Chaos were born Gaia and Uranus, who married and gave birth to the Titans, led by Cronus. Gaia and Uranus warned Cronus that a son of his would one day overpower him. Cronus therefore swallowed his numerous children by his wife Rhea, to keep that forecast from taking place.
When Zeus, was born, Rhea offered a stone for to Cronus to swallow, allowing Gaia to spirit the baby Zeus away to be raised in Crete by nymphs. Zeus grew up, came home and sought to overthrow his father. Metis, Zeus’s first wife, found a way of administering an emetic to Cronus, who then threw up his five previous children, Hestia, Demeter, Hera, Hades, and Poseidon. The children, led by Zeus, vanquished Cronus forever into Tartarus’ domain, the Dark World under the Earth.
Zeus triumphed over his brothers and sisters as well, dividing up the universe as he fancied. He made himself Supreme God over all, creating a great and beautiful place for his favored gods to live, on Mount Olympus. Zeus made himself God of the Sky and all its phenomena, including the thunderbolts. Hestia became goddess of the Hearth. To his brother Poseidon, he gave the rule of the Sea. Demeter became a goddess of Fertility, Hera (before she married Zeus and became a jealous wife), was goddess of Marriage and Childbirth, while Hades, one of his other brothers, was made god of the Underworld.
He did not look kindly upon us, the people, those creatures that populated the lands over which he reigned. They were not immortal, as the Olympian gods were, and they complained about the lack of good food and the everlasting cold nights. Zeus ignored their complaints, while he and the other gods feasted endlessly on steaming hot game from the surrounding forests, and had great crackling fires in every room of their palaces where they lived in the cold winter.
Enter Prometheus, one of the Titans not vanquished in the war between Zeus and the giants. Prometheus had molded The Common Man from clay. He stole some of the sparks of a glowing fire from the Olympians, so that the people below Olympus could have fire for cooking and warmth in the winter, thus greatly improving their lot in life.
Zeus was furious at this insult to his power, and had the titan chained to a mountain, sending an eagle to attack him daily. Zeus had his fellow Olympian, Hephaestus, fashion a wicked but beautiful creature to torment Prometheus. It was a woman, named Pandora, which means “all gifts”. She was given a beautiful box, which she was told not to open, but curiosity got the better of her, and out flew “all the evils that plague men.” The only “gift” that stayed in the box was “Hope”.’
Our scientists here in Athens have been disproving bits and pieces of this for some time now, and our sister periodical, “Popular Philosophy”, will be publishing an article next issue detailing how we have debunked this theory of creation. Buy one at your local newsstand today. Personally, I never liked or believed this story. Incest and patricide and eternal torture, I mean, really. We are learned people, and should start acting like it.
The creation summary I got from Encyclopedia Mythica and modified.
Mediterranean Monthly: So, Hades, thank you for joining us here today.
Hades: Don’t mention it. Not a lot to do in the Underworld. Listening to the screams of dead people gets old after a few centuries.
MM: Uh, right. Anyway… What’s your opinion on the Trojan War? Who’s right?
H: *bitter laugh.* My opinion? My opinion is that lots of death is a good thing. The only person who has anything right is Eris. There’s a girl who knows what she’s doing.
MM: What about the heroes who have already fallen? What are you doing with them?
H: Most of them are in the better parts of the Underworld. Pretentious though they are, they did do some heroic things.
MM: Thank you again, Hades, I think that’s all we have for you. We now turn to our next guest, Ares. Thank you for coming.
Ares: It was my duty to come! Everyone must know what treacherous dogs the Greeks are!
MM: I… beg your pardon?
A: Athena has allowed a mortal to wound me! ME! The GOD OF WAR!
MM: Yes, I-
A: And furthermore! One of them pricked Aphrodite’s hand! That is simply outrageous!
MM: I see, now-
A: AND THEN!!! My father has the audacity to mock me! ME! The GOD OF WAR!
MM: If you’ll just-
A: And he SCOLDED us! Like we were CHILDREN!!
MM: *rubs my temples*
A: And as if that weren’t bad enough, now the Greeks are fleeing! FLEEING! Like dogs! They piled back into their ships and ran for home, leaving an offering behind to their clearly superior opponents!
MM: So you think the Trojans are superior, then?
A: OF COURSE! A slug is superior to a Greek dog!
MM: Right, right. Thank you for your time, Ares. Well, ladies and gentlemen, that was Hades and Ares. Next month we’ll have interviews with Artemis and Apollo.