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In each creation myth the gods or primeval forces eventually create humans out of a variety of substances as seen in earlier posts. But what is interesting is what the gods view as perfects humans and how we imagine the perfect human. For the Gods, the ideal human will worship them and give them sacrifices and offerings. This is seen in Hesiod’s Races of men, The Golden age was an age of what we ourselves would consider perfect, no aging, sickness or work. But what we would consider perfect the gods did not. This Golden Race was so perfect that they didn’t need to worship the gods for anything, which angered them, forcing the Greek gods to create a new race, one that was too stupid to worship them, then one so warlike they killed themselves, and eventually to the Iron age where life isn’t that great and the humans need to praise the gods to get better lives. A life that we ourselves would not see as perfect, but is more agreeable to the Greek gods.

In the Mesoamerica creation myth this downgrade to the “perfect” human for the Gods can be seen as well. They started off with deer and birds, but they couldn’t worship them, then they created clay humans, wooden ones and eventually humans as we know it, only perfect. The humans could see all and know all, which the gods didn’t like because they were worried that by being so perfect they would become gods themselves. Therefore they limited the humans, moving them away from perfection.

SN

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2 thoughts on “Perfection of Humans

  1. I have noticed this as well in the creation myths that we have looked at. I find it funny that the gods create humans (in most cases after several trials) to be lesser than them. In most of the myths we have looked at humans are created in such a way that they are less intelligent than the gods and make many mistakes. To me this is pointing out the fact that humans were created by the gods and were created for the gods. The gods did not want humans perfect because their imperfections allows the gods to control the humans. The imperfections in human life cause humans to pray and work to please the gods in hopes of the gods of rewarding them and helping them. This is what the gods wanted – humans were made for them, they are tools used by the gods so they can be praised and worshiped.

  2. Would not the stories and Myths created by people of the description of the perfection of humans in the eyes of the Gods be instead what the people of a given culture view as what they want perfection to be?

    Kind of in the same manner that the Roman created the man Cinncinatus, the devoted farmer/soldier archetype who, when the State needed him, would step into office and guide the State to peace and prosperity. This man was likely created by the Romans as a guide to future power holders in Rome to act in a similar fashion. Romulus can also be a more Divine example.

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