CAS CL 101 Lecture Notes - Cup-Bearer, Pamphylia, Scheria

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Babylonian Texts
“Enuma Elish” – “The Creation Myth
about the beginning of the world
It was the water in the beginning of the world
cause the earth to split from chaos water to heaven and hell
The Enuma Elish is a Babylonian religious text from either 1800 BCE or 1100 BCE, believed to
be a ritual text. The story tells of an epic battle among the gods, centered around Marduk, the
king of the gods, and his defeat of Tiamat, the being of chaotic waters. These stories also include
a creation account, telling how the earth came to exist.
The Enuma Elish is the Babylonian Creation Myth. Written across seven stone tablets, the poem
describes the beginning of the universe as a separating of water from Chaos. Essentially, the
universe begins in a chaos of swirling waters until, with time, the waters separate into Apsu (fresh
water) and Tiamat (salt water.) Apsu and Tiamat give birth to the first generation of gods, the
oldest among them being Ea
Tiamat is angered by the death of her husband, so she remarries and exalts her new husband,
Kingu, to the position of supreme dominion. She does this by fashioning eleven beasts: a
venomous snake, a great serpent, an exalted serpent, a furious snake, a hairy thing, a beast of
weather, an angry lion, a scorpion-man, a being of violent storms, a fish-man and a bull-man.
Marduk then conquers her, defeating her beasts. He rips Tiamat in two, which is the action
responsible for the creation of the realm where the humans live.
Tiamat/Apsu – Ea – Marduk = Gaia/Uranus – Cronus - Zeus
Apsu – “Uranus”
Abzu is the patron god who fathers the second generation gods, Ea and his brothers, with his wife
Tiamat. Abzu is the fresh waters and Tiamat is the oceanic waters. When they conceived new life,
they were annoyed, because the new gods were rowdy and disturbed the peace of their parents.
This led Abzu to want to murder the new gods to restore his peace, but Tiamat loved her children
and didn't want them to die.
Tiamat – “Gaia”
Tiamat is the matron goddess, the mother of the gods. Her defeat by her grandson, Marduk, is a
tragedy, because it was her own actions that incurred her destruction. She warned Ea of Abzu's
plan to kill them, which prompted the revolt that took Abzu's life. In the wake of her husband's
death, Tiamat remarries to Kingu and raises a legion of primordial beings, mostly serpents, to
raise her new husband to the throne where Abzu had been. But she lost, and Marduk slayed her.
Ea – “Cronus”
Ea is the father of Marduk, who created the world. Ea and his brothers were the loud children
who annoyed their parents enough to provoke a war of the gods. Ea is warned by Tiamat of the
eminent attack and allows a chance for the children to overthrow their murderous father.
Marduk – “Zeus”
Marduk is a third-generation god in the Enuma Elish, the son of Ea who is the son of Tiamat and
Abzu. Abzu and Tiamat are disputing, because Abzu wants to kill the gods who have been born
within the body of his wife, Tiamat. Marduk is similar to Zeus from Greek mythology, because
they're both third-generation gods, and they both rise to power by slaying their ancestral deities.
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For Marduk, this meant conquering Tiamat and her legion of titanic serpents. In the end of the
conflict, Marduk slays Tiamat by ripping her in half, which constitutes the creation of the waters
of the earth and the sky (and by proxy, also the atmosphere between them). He then subjects her
serpents to service on the earth as natural forces.
“Atrahasis” – “Flood Myth
the god crated humans to do the work
overpopulation happens and human not paying attention to the human
god wants to get rid of human
Enlil sent the infer
Enki said to send a flood to kill human and warned the Atrahaiss to build the boat to survive
the god agreed to led them live but need to control them
The Gods created the flood to punish human
Tablet I contains a creation myth about the Sumerian gods Anu, Enlil, and Enki, gods of sky,
wind, and water. Enlil assigned junior divines[6] to do farm labor and maintain the rivers and
canals, but after forty years the lesser gods or dingirs rebelled and refused to do strenuous labor.
Instead of punishing the rebels, Enki, who is also the kind, wise counselor of the gods, suggested
that humans be created to do the work. The mother goddess Mami is assigned the task of creating
humans by shaping clay figurines mixed with the flesh and blood of the slain god Geshtu-E. All
the gods in turn spit upon the clay. After 10 months, a specially-made womb breaks open and
humans are born. Tablet I continues with legends about overpopulation and plagues.
Tablet II begins with more overpopulation of humans and the god Enlil sending first famine and
drought at formulaic intervals of 1200 years to reduce the population. Tablet II is mostly
damaged, but ends with Enlil's decision to destroy humankind with a flood and Enki bound by an
oath to keep the plan secret.
Tablet III of the Atrahasis Epic contains the flood story. It tells how the god Enki warns the hero
Atrahasis of Shuruppak, speaking through a reed wall (suggestive of an oracle) to dismantle his
house and build a boat to escape the flood planned by the god Enlil to destroy humankind. The
boat is to have a roof “like Apsu,” upper and lower decks, and to be sealed with bitumen.
Atrahasis boards the boat with his family and animals and seals the door. The storm and flood
begin. Even the gods are afraid.
After seven days the flood ends and Atrahasis offers sacrifices to the gods. Enlil is furious with
Enki for violating his oath. But Enki denies violating his oath and argues: “I made sure life was
preserved.” Enki and Enlil agree on other means for controlling the human population.
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Hesiod’s Theogony
The “Theogony” is essentially a large-scale synthesis of a vast variety of local Greek traditions
concerning the gods and the universe, organized as a narrative that tells about the creation of the
world out of Chaos and about the gods that shaped the cosmos. It lists the early generations and
genealogy of the gods, titans and heroes since the beginning of the universe.
For the Greeks, gods don't generate the universe; the universe creates gods. These "gods" spontaneously
generated. Thus, sometimes Greek gods are simply personified abstractions or concepts with no real
personalities. "Theogony" means "birth of the gods." This thousand-line poem comes from the end of the
8th century bce. Most generally it is a hymn to Zeus, king of gods and men, but it encompasses the origin
of the world (cosmogony) and of the other gods.
Begins with him honoring the muses – they are the ones who gave him all this information and he
is simply writing it down.
"Chaos" or a "yawning void" comes into being and then female and male principles and aspects
of nature. At first things generate spontaneously but soon a more abstract sexuality takes over.
Gaea and Uranus produce twelve Titans -- six male and six female -- and then incest is
responsible for more beings.
Uranus attempts to repress creation and the story certainly gives Freud material for theorizing
about the castration complex. Culturally the story reflects patriarchal paranoia. We hear one
version of the birth of Aphrodite, goddess of love and sex, laughter and hoaxes, beauty, and the
whisperings of maidens. Here's a case of birth from the father.
Here's another next-generation attempt at repression: Cronus swallowing his kids. Rhea was
originally a fertility goddess. Perhaps this din associated with her worship is etiologically related
to the noise made so that the cries of the baby Zeus would not be heard by Cronus. The stone
taking the place of Zeus and then later vomited up by Cronus became a tourist site in ancient
Greece. It was exhibited at Delphi and oiled daily by the priests.
Zeus is an archetypal dragon-slayer (like Marduk vs. Tiamat in Babylonian myth). His sexploits
probably reflect the subjugation of previous goddess religions by the conquering male-god
worshipping religion brought by the invading Indo-Europeans. Zeus has the same impulse but
doesn't fall into the mistakes of the previous generations of male rulers. He suppresses the
woman, not the child. He forestalls opposition by disposing of the mothers and usurps the female
reproductive role, particularly with the Olympians Athena and Dionysus.
THE FIRST 4 (1st generation)
Chaos (or the Void, or Chasm), Gaea (Ge) = Earth, Mother Earth (Uranus = sky, brother she
sleeps with), Eros / Amor = Desire, Love (as the binding principle in Nature, the force of
attraction, the first motion), and Erebus = Darkness
THE TITANS (2nd generation)
Gaea and Uranus sexually produced six male and six female Titans and then some incests follow.
This batch of ur-forces, known for their size and strength, are more anthropomorphic than the
first generation but for the most part are ousted now by the Olympian gods.
oOcean (the river enclircling the world), Hyperion (sun-god father to Helius the sun-god,
Selene the moon, and
Eos), Themis("Law"), Mnemosyne ("Memory"), Phoebe ("Brilliant," having something
to do with the light of the sky), Tethys, Coeus, Crius, Theia, Iapetus, And Rhea
(fertility goddess) and Cronus (time)
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Document Summary

Enuma elish the creation myth about the beginning of the world. It was the water in the beginning of the world cause the earth to split from chaos water to heaven and hell. The enuma elish is a babylonian religious text from either 1800 bce or 1100 bce, believed to be a ritual text. The story tells of an epic battle among the gods, centered around marduk, the king of the gods, and his defeat of tiamat, the being of chaotic waters. These stories also include a creation account, telling how the earth came to exist. The enuma elish is the babylonian creation myth. Written across seven stone tablets, the poem describes the beginning of the universe as a separating of water from chaos. Essentially, the universe begins in a chaos of swirling waters until, with time, the waters separate into apsu (fresh water) and tiamat (salt water. )

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