The Greek Creation Myth

One of the older and more complete creation myths is the one written down by Hesiod. Out of Chaos, the Yawning Void, the universe came into being. The heavy parts gravited inwards to form the Earth, the light parts sped outward and became the sky with the air between. Deep below the Earth Tartaros formed. The Sun, the Moon and the stars were formed and a rain fell upon the Earth, the rivers flowed and the seas filled.

Out of the Yawning Void came many children first among them Eros, or Love, oldest of them all. Love was followed by Night and Erebos, who begot Day and lastly came Gaia the Earth Mother.

Gaia created Ouranos, the Sky Father and from their Holy Marriage sprung the Cyclops, the “Hundred-handed” monsters and the twelve titans. Among these titans, gods in their own right who gave name to the moons of Saturn, are Oceanos, the Sea Lord, Hyperion, the Sun Lord, father of Helios teh Sun, Selena the Moon and Aurora, the Dawn. Last of the children and most terrible was Cronos.

Cronos (called Saturn by the Romans), the last born to Gaia, takes revenge upon Ouranos, who hates all his children with a vengeance. With a sickle, given to him by Gaia he attacks his father and castrates him. Cronos throws the severed genitals into the sea, and from the foam Aphrodite was born. Cronos cast his brothers and sisters in the Tartaros, except for Rhea, who he took for his wife. The children of the Titans he mostly ignored, especially those he though useful, like Helios and Atlas, whom he told to hold up the sky.

Cronos, now got a little nervous that one day one of his children would do the same to him, so decided to devour each and every one of them. Rhea, his sister and wife, contrived to hide one of them. Instead of feeding thing Cronos the baby, she feeds him a stone. Zeus is hidden on the isle of Crete, where he’s fed by nymphs and his guards protect him from being found or heard. From Crete he returns to overthrow Cronos.

Together with his mother Rhea, Zeus conspires to feed Cronos a nasty dose of medicine, that makes him so sick, he throws up. First the stone, which can still be found at Delphi and then his older children, Hestia, Demeter, Hera, Hades and Poseidon. These had grown inside their father and qucikly followed Zeus their brother down to Earth.

Zeus and Cronos fought for 10 years. Prometheus first fought on Cronos side, but Cronos did not heed his advice to set free his brothers and sisters, the Titans. Zeus welcomed him and set free the Cyclops, who thanked him and give Zeus Lightning and Thunder. To Hades they give the Helm of Invisibility and Poseidon was gifted with a trident. Next Zeus liberated the Hundred-handed monsters, who could throw one hundred rocks at Cronos in one throw.

After feasting on nectar and ambrosia the Gods of Olympus win the battle and Cronos is imprisoned in Tartaros, the Underworld. This place is as far removed from Earth as are the Heavens and a stone would fall for nine days and nine night before it reached the bottom. Tartaros is ringed by a bronze wall, guarded by the Cyclops and the Hundred-handed monsters. Here Night meets Day as one comes and the other goes. Here Death and Sleep, Night brothers dwell. Here dwells the Lady Styx, Ocean’s eldest daughter, whose river’s water is used when the gods swear their great oaths and woe to him that breaks it.

Zeus, Poseidon and Hades are now ready to go and fight among themselves for dominion over they gods, but clever Prometheus convinces them to cast lots and Zeus ends up as Lord of the Skies and Thunder, Poseidon as Lord of the Sea and Waves, while Hades ends up ruling Tartaros and the Dead.

Together they rule the Earth and all its bounty.

The Creation of Man