University of Chicago
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Creation Myth Essay
There are many different creation myths from different religions and different cultures. Two of the many creation myths are the creation myth of Genesis and the creation myth of India. Although these are both creation myths there are still some similarities and some differences between the two. The similarities between the Genesis and India creation myths are that both of the creators are benign and both of the Gods are supreme while the differences between them are that the reasons why man was created were different and the creations are accomplished in different ways.
The two creation myths of Genesis and India are similar because both of the gods are benign. In the creation myth of Genesis, God gave everything that was needed for survival, and places it on the Earth. In the myth God says, “ Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat”(Page 41). In the creation myth of India, Brahma is also benign. He is benign because he knows what the humans need in order to prosper and gives it to them. In the myth, it says “Now Brahma knows that these first humans would need fire to prosper. So he created fire out of his own mouth” (Page 40). This is what makes Brahma benign. Another similarity between the creation myth of Genesis and the creation myth of India is that both of the Gods are supreme. In the myth of India, it says that “In the beginning, there was nothing but the Great Self Brahman. That is to say nothing but Brahman existed. When you sacrifice to this God or that Goddess, it is really only Brahman that you are worshiping. He is behind all things” (Page 40). In the myth of Genesis, God is supreme because God created everything that is living and that is not living, he created everything that is in existence. What makes god supreme is his power. This is because he has the power to do anything and everything in which he pleases.
The differences between the creation myths of Genesis and India include that man was created for different reasons. In the myth of Genesis, man was created to populate and dominate the Earth. In the myth is says “Let [man] have domination over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and upon every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth” (Page 41). However, in the myth of Indi, man was created for a different reason. In the myth of India, man was created because Brahma was lonely. The myth says that “He yearned for someone to keep him company and his thoughts split the temporary body he was using into two parts, like the halves of a clamshell coming apart.” (Page 40) Brahma created man for one reason and that reason was so Brahma could have someone to keep him company.
Another difference between these two creation myths is that the creation of man was accomplished in different ways. In the myth of India, Brahma’s creation is accomplished by him calling the humans forth in his thoughts. In the myth it says “and so the creatures of the earth were developed by Brahma calling them forth by name and the action of the male and female. Thus, Brahma is inside of every living thing for they came from him.” (Page 40) In the creation myth of Genesis God accomplishes his creations by speaking. So when God created man he said “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness…” (Page 41) he created them by demanding it to be done.
There are many creation myths other than the creation myth of India and the creation myth Genesis. These two creation myths may be different but they are also the same. The similarities between these two myths is that their Gods are both supreme and they are both benign while the differences between these myths are that the reasons for the creations were different and the way the creations were accomplished were also different.