The World Myth

Principal Components of the World Myth

How are the deities in the world myth both cultural and archetypal—local and universal?

Creator gods are universal because we all have been created in some way; and they are local, because our communities, whether religions, nations, or whole cultures, require gods who represent our values. Mother/Earth goddesses are universal because we all came from mothers and because we all depend on the earth itself for nourishment; again, they are local, because different communities have various concepts of the feminine in the universe and of the nourishment their particular corners of the world produce. Gods who represent aspects of natural phenomena are universal for the obvious reason that we are all affected by these phenomena, and local because climate and the importance of particular natural events differ from place to place. Polynesian deities reflect the world of the Pacific Islands; the weather spirits of the North American woodlands reflect that natural world.


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