Myth Comparisons.

Essay by Kazic September 2003

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The Japanese creation myth started out with the earth being a formless void of nothing but muddy water. From that water a green shoot sprung and inside it was the first god, who made all the other gods. Out of all he created though, Izagami and Izanami were the most perfect. The islands of Japan were formed when Izagami poked his staff through the clouds to see what was on the surface of the earth. As he lifted the staff from the muddy water, clumps of mud fell on top of the water and formed into the islands of Japan. The pair went down to the earth, and everywhere they went, flowers and plants sprouted. They had four children. One was the sun, one was the moon, one lived in the water and created storms and such, and from the fourth the line of the emperors of Japan was established.

In the Egyptian creation myth, most of the details are very similar to the Japanese myth. The world starts out covered in water, from one god all the others are created, and two of the gods, Osiris and Isis, sort of led all the rest. From them came all the rulers of Egypt, just like how in the Japanese myth Izanami and Izagami had a child who eventually had a child who was the first emperor of Japan.

In the African origin myth of how leopards became spotted, the leopard invites fire over for dinner. Fire refuses every time he is asked, so leopard's wife takes it as an insult to their hospitality and keeps urging leopard to ask fire to come to visit, and finally he agrees, but only if leopard will cover the path between their houses with dry leaves. On the day of the visit, leopard's wife...