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Death Grip

Death Grip: How Political Psychology Explains Bush's Ghastly Success. Interesting article on the work of psychologists Jeff Greenberg, Sheldon Solomon, and Tom Pyszczynski. [Via Disinformation.]
posted by homunculus on Aug 29, 2007 - 68 comments

 

Zeitgeist - Hegel would NOT be proud.

Zeitgeist, the movie [Google Video link embedded] - An interesthing, if bizarre, mix of buffed-up comparative mythology, 9/11 conspiracy theories and New world order rambling about banks, loans, debts and war. Is paranoia the spirit of our times?
posted by Baldons on Jul 26, 2007 - 32 comments

Sing to us, O Muse, of our Timeless Myths

Sing to us, O Muse, of our Timeless Myths. A site dedicated to Classical, Norse & Celtic mythology and Arthurian legends.
posted by Kattullus on Jul 22, 2007 - 11 comments

Through all your houses wandering...

Welcome (well, almost, the roman calendar is a touch early) to the Year of the Fire Pig. See what it means for you as we finish the Fire Dog Year.
posted by gren on Jan 1, 2007 - 44 comments

Stories of The Dreaming As Told Through Sight, Sound and Art.

The Dreaming (arguably better known as 'The Dreamtime') is more than just the story of how the world was created as told by Aboriginal Australians. It is also the basis for their way of life and death, their source of power in life and it tells of the life and influence of their ancestors on their culture. It was so important to Aboriginal Australians in the time before the white invasion of Australia that it was the one commonly held belief amongst a culture that consisted of over 500 different tribes (discussion of Dreamtime beliefs here). Thought to be the oldest continuously maintained cultural history on Earth, it is often presented as a series of inter-related stories explaining Aboriginal Australian origins and culture, such as how the Australian landscape was created or how the Mimi spirits taught them how to paint these stories on the walls of caves more than 40,000 years ago.

And what better way to learn of several of the many different Dreamtime stories than to listen and watch them being told by Aboriginal Australians elders themselves? And if that isn't enough Dreamtime mythology for you, here's some links to various sites which allow you to view Aboriginal rock art to see how these stories were translated into a form of artistic expression which is now five times older than the Egyptian Pyramids themselves.
posted by Effigy2000 on Dec 23, 2006 - 14 comments

Ye Largishe List ov Gods & Spirits

I want to love the Table of Gods, a list of "4862 gods, godesses, deities, avatars, incarnations, angels, demons and various spirits, and 520 aliases, mispronounciations and generally confusing name variations." There isn't much more than a list of names with short descriptions, but you can search by keyword (say, chthonic), by origin (e.g., Canaan), and by name. The information and presentation are not in the same league as Encyclopedia Mythica, or even Godchecker, but it does list Hanuman.

The listings invite you to add keywords and comments, but unfortunately the feature is broken. You can add either, but they are appended unmoderated to the record for "A", which is consequently a mess. If I've been a good boy this year, this feature will work and be gleaning meaningful user contributions on Christmas morning, and I will get to love the Table of Gods.
posted by owhydididoit on Dec 20, 2006 - 15 comments

Immortal Illustrated Stories

Amar Chitra Katha were the comics of my youth. Illustrated painstakingly with loving details, the immortal epics and stories of India going back over 5000 years were crystallized in these thin graphic novels. I will always remember Mirabai, for the romance between her and the god of love and war, Krishna. And Chanakya, aka Kautilya, author of the Arthashastra but better known to me for his Nitishastra - niti means political ethics. But other nitishastras include the famous Panchantra [pdf], the equivalent of Aesop's Fables for India, a textbook of 'niti' or the wise conduct of life.
posted by infini on Nov 5, 2006 - 20 comments

Picasso and the Minotaur - an animated short

Minotauromaquia - a stop motion animated short set to Stravinsky's in which Picasso confronts the minotaur and some other painted characters come to life. The image of the Minotaur is a recurring symbol of self in Picasso's works. (main link via Milinkito [more])
posted by madamjujujive on Nov 5, 2006 - 12 comments

Emperor Penguins Uber Alles!

Why are political extremists so interested in UFOs? The Nation of Islam has its “Great Mother Wheels.” Their melanin-challenged brethren in the Neo-Nazi movement have the myth of Neu Schwabenland, an Antarctic redoubt where the remnants of the Third Reich fled after the war, with the U.S. military in hot pursuit. There, hidden among the ice and the Emperor Penguins, the frostbitten Aryans plotted to reconquer the world. To that end, they created a fleet of UFOs, using top-secret Nazi technology that They don’t want you to know about. Nizkor has recreated pamphlets published by the Holocaust denier Ernst Zundel on this topic, one of which includes a helpful list of German phrases to be used during an encounter of the Third Kind. (This myth is also covered in the eighth chapter of this book.)
posted by jason's_planet on Aug 16, 2006 - 21 comments

APRIL FOOLS!

In the study of mythology, folklore and religion, a trickster is a god, goddess, spirit, human hero or anthropomorphic animal who plays pranks or otherwise disobeys normal rules and norms of behaviour.

Tricksters come in all forms, from all cultures. Notable examples include Br'er Rabbit, Odysseus, Eshu, Raven, and Loki; most or all of whom you are likely familiar with.
posted by Eideteker on Apr 29, 2006 - 31 comments

Jesus was way cool. But did he exist?

Jesus walked on the water ice. So sayeth... um... well, this guy at Florida State. Doron Nof has released a paper positing that when Jesus walked on the water in Galilee, he was actually walking on a patch of floating ice. What's interesting about science like this to me is that it both validates and invalidates scripture, since if Jesus was walking on ice... no miracle (although, it's a miracle he didn't slip and fall, har har har). But if Jesus was walking on ice, then at least he historically existed, which is still an open question at least in some quarters. In case you think you recognize Mr. Nof's name, you may be remembering his work explaining that the parting of the Red Sea was totally possible (flash video link).
posted by illovich on Apr 5, 2006 - 106 comments

Himmapan Creatures: Beasts of Asian Legend

Himmapan.com features illustrations and photos of artistic depictions of the creatures of the legendary Himmapan (or Himapan/Himaphan) Forest of the Himalayas. Fantastic chimeras of Asian mythology.
posted by Gator on Feb 16, 2006 - 7 comments

Refuting the Myth that Jesus Never Existed

Did Jesus Really Exist? Also some notes on the doubtful existence of Hannibal.
posted by brownpau on Jan 9, 2006 - 122 comments

Bibliture

Reason #48713 for teaching the Bible in schools: "The classics of British and American literature are filled with biblical allusions that would be lost on a reader without basic knowledge of the Bible"
posted by afx114 on Jun 22, 2005 - 200 comments

Rainbows - Nature's Light Show

Rainbows, pots of gold, and leprechauns are images that come to mind on St. Paddy’s Day. They are beautiful to behold, but how much do you really know about rainbows? Did you know that there are double, triple, and supernumerary rainbows, that no two people ever see the same rainbow, and that rainbows consist of more than just the ROYGBIV colors? Rainbows permeate mythology, prophecy, spirituality, symbolism, mentality, and sexuality. Rainbows are a job for one, a link to the past for some, and a hope for the future for others.
posted by debralee on Mar 17, 2005 - 24 comments

masks

I have been thinking about masks lately. Masks are ancient and universal, our ancestors put on masks to become an other, to become a god, even unto this day. Greek tragedy and comedy began in the worship of Dionysos, the god of wine, intoxication, and creative ecstasy, in rituals where worshipers often wore or worshipped masks. Indeed, the word for mask in Greek drama was persona, now commonly used to describe constructed online identities. And so we understand ourselves as wearing masks, whole series of masks--behind which we find only emptiness, for we can never see ourselves truly.
posted by y2karl on Feb 24, 2005 - 30 comments

Artificial Intelligence

Pygmalion stories in literature and art. The myth of the scuptor who fell in love with a statue and prayed for it to be brought to life.
Related :- Galatea, a piece of interactive fiction which allows you to interact with a interpretation of the living statue (by Emily Short); Wikipedia entry on the myth.
posted by plep on Feb 21, 2005 - 10 comments

Let's get Kraken!

Like most people who love mythical creatures (cryptozoology), I also collect stamps (philately). At last, someone has combined these twin fetishes in one easily displayed fashion. My favorites include the Loch Ness Monster and his ancient cousin the Kraken, especially these two which feature a guest appearance by Mickey Mouse.
posted by jonson on Dec 29, 2004 - 23 comments

Nastaliq Past and Present

According to Persian mythology, God is a painter who has painted the world with his kelk. More Persian calligraphy here.
posted by BuddhaInABucket on Dec 5, 2004 - 10 comments

"You Narts are a haughty and stubborn race."

Narts! The Nart Sagas are arguably the most essential ingredient of Circassian Culture, to which they are what Greek mythology is to Western Civilization. Though much less known than their Greek counterparts, the Nart epic tales are no less developed. The heroism, sagacity, guile and ferocity of the Nart demi-gods are more than matches to those of the Greek Pantheon. If this selection of stories captures your interest, you might want John Colarusso's Nart Sagas from the Caucasus; you can read the introduction online ("A ship sailing across the Black Sea in the year 1780 eventually would have come upon a lush shore at the eastern end of the dark gray waters..."). Although they seem to have been brought by the Ossetes (and J. Cassian is posting an Ossetian tale, The Death of Soslan, on his blog), they're everywhere in the Northern Caucasus. And some people say they were the source of the King Arthur stories.
posted by languagehat on Dec 4, 2004 - 13 comments

Heathens!

The Paganism of Suomi. Before the arrival of Christianity, and even for centuries after, Finland (popups) had a rich religious tradition. Like most things Finnish, it was wholly different from the mythology of their Nordic neighbors, but shares much with that of the Sámi (Lapp) peoples.
posted by borkingchikapa on Nov 27, 2004 - 10 comments

Meaning of Life

The Meaning of Life according to various rather famous people (Dennett, Fukuyama, etc). I'm watching the Dennett video at the moment and it starts rather weakly, but, by midway through, is rolling along nicely. With topics like "being good without god" and "the anthropic principle" it struck me as relevant to a couple of recent askmefi threads.
Dennett: [pause] i guess i'll say it again, more slowly...

(oh, and the player interface is rather delicate - give it time to load and click play a few times...)
posted by andrew cooke on Oct 1, 2004 - 17 comments

Living Myths

Living Myths.
posted by hama7 on Jul 19, 2004 - 4 comments

Polytheists Have More ...

Ancient Greek mythology for aspiring young pagans.
warning: educational friday flash fun for the geeklings!pre-emptive comment: it's now friday in oz :)
posted by elphTeq on Apr 15, 2004 - 9 comments

Hpoi Dancing

Hopi dancing in pictures and words: Kachina, ladder, rain, butterfly and snake.
posted by moonbird on Oct 29, 2003 - 5 comments

Folklore and Mythology

Folklore and Mythology E-Texts A multicultural collection classified according to types and variants. See also the SurLaLune Fairy Tales Pages (portal with annotated tales, tons of illustrations), Folk and Fairytales From Around the World (not updated since 1997, unfortunately), Hans Christian Andersen (tales and illustrations, plus additional links), Fairy Tales by the Grimm Brothers (German and English, with some illustrations), the Grimm Index Page (a complete set), Red Riding Hood: A Multimedia Edition (exactly what it sounds like; those with sensitive eyes should be warned that the page is, well, red), and Tracey Callison's extensive Sources for the Analysis and Interpretation of Folk and Fairy Tales (scholarly bibliographies).
posted by thomas j wise on Sep 21, 2003 - 7 comments

Sacred Texts

The Internet Sacred Text Archive is an online archive of electronic texts about religion, mythology, and various esoteric topics. The site has many complete books from a wide variety of traditions, including the only (to their knowledge) comprehensive online translations of the Kalevala, Shinto texts, and the Upanishads. There's a lot of fascinating stuff here.
posted by homunculus on Apr 24, 2003 - 12 comments

The werewolf myth

The werewolf myth lives at this site, with essays, reviews, fiction and art, while the likely genesis of the werewolf mythos has its roots in folks like Larry Gomez, just your ordinary guy with congenital hypertrichosis.
posted by headspace on Oct 30, 2002 - 4 comments

"When Shiva holds the center of the stage, the role of the personalized Brahman is colored with death and destruction. Shiva's stern asceticism casts a blight over the fields of rebirth. His presence negates and transcends the kaleidoscope of sufferings and joys. Nevertheless, he bestows wisdom and peace and is not only terrible but profoundly benign. Shiva's nature at once transcends and includes all the polarities of the living world." "Shiva opens his third eye only in anger, and the offender is burnt to cinders.
posted by sudama on Aug 10, 2002 - 26 comments

"The Druids of the ancient Celtic world have a startling kinship with the brahmins of the Hindu religion,"

"The Druids of the ancient Celtic world have a startling kinship with the brahmins of the Hindu religion," according to popular historian Peter Berresford Ellis. Another author examines the parallels between Celtic and Vedic culture in the article The Celtic Vedic Connection, and a particular diety is analyzed in The Horned God in India and Europe. This may not be very conservative scholarship, but I found it intriguing and fun to contemplate.
posted by homunculus on Jul 31, 2002 - 6 comments

Lucas: Powerful reteller of myth - or galactic gasbag?

Lucas: Powerful reteller of myth - or galactic gasbag? Salon has a scathing review of Lucas' claim that the basis of the Star Wars saga is in "man's oldest stories" and that he was guided by Joseph Campbell.
"With 'Star Wars' I consciously set about to re-create myths and the classic mythological motifs," Lucas says. "I wanted to use those motifs to deal with issues that exist today."
Hogwash, says author Steven Hart. Star Wars is based not on "The Odyssey" or the "Upanishads", but on Asimov, Heinlen, Herbert and other 20th century S.F.
posted by rshah21 on Apr 10, 2002 - 32 comments

"There's a lot of killing going on in Miami," he says. "You want to fight, want to learn how to live, you got to learn the secret stories."

"There's a lot of killing going on in Miami," he says. "You want to fight, want to learn how to live, you got to learn the secret stories." Homeless children build hope and community through a shared mythology which includes demons, spirits, a beautiful guardian, and a harbinger of death named Bloody Mary. Via Snarkout
posted by frykitty on Jan 10, 2002 - 21 comments

Euro the new European currency is now official in 12 European countries. In Crete the ancient home of Europa who was a Kings daughter abducted by Zeus, Europa gave Zeus 3 sons and he in turn promised to name a continent after her. Now Europa has a currency as well. In Italy it may not mean love but it does mean cheaper sex. Tonight the ATMs are restocked and even Monopoly money is reprinted.
posted by stbalbach on Dec 31, 2001 - 8 comments

Encyclopedia Mythica

Encyclopedia Mythica - An encyclopedia on mythology, folklore, and legend.
posted by y0bhgu0d on Jul 22, 2000 - 9 comments

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