|← Allen Mandelbaum||"Urashima Taro" →|
There are different themes in myths from different cultures. However, there are themes that are recurrent in myths from different cultures. Such themes occur in myths from many cultures irrespective of their time. Despite the occurrence of such themes in the different cultures, it should be noted that there is no universal theme in all myths.
One of the most common themes in myths is the creation of the world. This theme occurs in many myths from different cultures. Such myths explain about god and the beginning of the earth and life. The theme of creation occurs in many myths that explain how a group of people come to be especially in the place they are today. This theme also explains the economic activity of a group of people and how it has been practiced from time to time by the ancestors of the group. In the cultures that have creation myths the theme of creation tells how life was formed by god and how the universe was organized from its original state of chaos to the now organized state. Details of how animals were created are also covered in many creation myths. The order in which things were created by the supernatural being is also explained (Willis, 1993).
Another theme that is popular in myths from different cultures is the theme of destruction and recreation of the earth. This theme is popular in most religious myths. It explains how god will destroy the earth because of man’s deviance of god. A good example of this theme is in ancient Greek culture which believed that there was the occurrence of seasonal fertility which was a strategy by the gods to regulate recreation. Another example is the case of believe of existence of perfect ages where humanity was at its best before defying god. In such ‘eras’ man was still obedient to god and god loved man for what he was. After man defied god, the perfect world was destroyed and man was moved to a lesser perfect world. This theme is clearly illustrated in the Christian story of existence of Garden of Eden and Hesiod’s Golden Age in the Jewish religion. Other ways that the world will be destroyed common in myths is through floods and fire. This theme occurs in Christian and also in Chinese myths. The Chinese myth of creation and floods by ‘ruwa’ is very similar to the Christian story of creation (Gray, & Moore 1916).