God: Myths of the Male Divine / Edition 1

God: Myths of the Male Divine / Edition 1

by David Adams Leeming, Jake Page, Leeming David
     
 

He has been a trickster, a shaman, a divine child; he has been a sacrificial victim, a consort of the earth goddess, a warrior, a sky king; and the creator, a distant and impersonal immensity. He is the male divine, seen in the many gods of myth, and his life story is told here in this graceful and illuminating account by David Leeming and Jake Page.

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Overview

He has been a trickster, a shaman, a divine child; he has been a sacrificial victim, a consort of the earth goddess, a warrior, a sky king; and the creator, a distant and impersonal immensity. He is the male divine, seen in the many gods of myth, and his life story is told here in this graceful and illuminating account by David Leeming and Jake Page.
Illustrating their points with materials ranging from the prehistoric cave paintings to the mystic Jewish Kabbalah, from the ancient Indian Vedas to tales of the North American Indians and other myths from around the world, Leeming and Page reveal the changing mask of the male divine. We see how that divinity emerged in some areas from cults involving "animal masters" (as in the Bear Man of the Cherokee Indians), sorcerers, and shamans who embarked on spirit journeys. God sometimes appeared as the trickster—as Loki of the Norse people, Legba of Africa's Yoruba, Raven and Coyote of North America, and Krishna of India—both creative and bedeviling.
With the Neolithic age came the rise of agriculture and animal husbandry, of settlements and specialization in the roles of males and females—and a more sophisticated body of myths and rituals. Here the Mother Goddess was dominant, and the male God became her consort, ultimately dying in order that nature might be renewed. The authors illustrate this new stage in the male divine with tales of the Egyptian Osiris, the Caananite Baal, and Wiyot of California's Luiseno Indians, among others. They describe the rise of a male sky God as "the equal to, the true mate, of Goddess, who was still associated with Earth." In the Iron Age, the sky God became more aggressive, separating from the Goddess and taking his place as the King God, as Zeus, Odin, and Horus.
Ultimately he emerged as the creator, a more distant and impersonal force. Here Leeming and Page also illuminate an important trend—a sense that the divine is beyond gender, that it permeates all things (as seen in Chinese Tao, the Indian Brahmin, and En Sof of the Kabbalah). They see a movement in the biography of God toward a reunion with the Goddess. "As the Supreme Being becomes less Goddess and less God," they write, "it speaks more clearly to the essential human need for unity and understanding."
In their previous work together, Goddess, Leeming and Page provided a marvelous biography of the female divine—an account that won a wide and enduring audience. Now, in God, they provide the perfect companion volume—completing, as the authors write, "a record of what we humans believe ourselves at the deepest level to be."

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780195113877
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA
Publication date:
05/28/1997
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
208
Sales rank:
902,193
Product dimensions:
5.31(w) x 7.94(h) x 0.37(d)

Table of Contents

Introduction3
IThe Birth of The Archetype: Trickster/Shaman/Animal Master11
Bear Man14
Samoyed Shaman Dream18
Navajo Shaman Chant21
Maui25
Krishna (I)28
Loki30
Hermes33
The Cock35
Ananse (I)38
Ananse (II)40
Legba (Esu-Elegbara)42
Hlakanyana43
Dikithi46
Raven (I)48
Iktome50
Coyote52
IIThe Rise of The Archetype: Divine Child/Goddess Consort/Dying God57
Faro64
Wiyot68
Wondjina69
Mondawmin71
Dumuzi81
Osiris83
Baal86
Kutoyis90
Jesus96
Dionysos99
Quetzalcoatl103
IIIThe Marriage and Divorce of the Archetype: Sky God and Earth Mate109
Geb and Nut111
Sedi and Milo113
Gaia and Uranos113
Rangi and Papa115
Nareau117
Phan Ku117
Tu-chai-pai118
Wulbari120
Earth-Mother and Sky-Father120
The Bini Sky122
Marduk (I)124
Apollo128
IVThe Dominance of the Archetype: King God133
Horus135
Viracocha136
Raven (II)139
Zeus142
Prajapati (I)144
VThe Theologizing of the Archetype: The Creator God149
Indra150
Prajapati (II)153
Io154
The Heart of Heaven157
Nainema157
Amma159
Taiko-mol160
Marduk (II)161
Yahweh163
The Word167
Allah169
VIThe Universalizing of the Archetype: God as Self and God Within173
The Chief174
Ta'aroa175
Krishna (II)177
Brahman179
The Tao (I)180
The Tao (II)181
En Sof182
Rumi's God183
The Big Bang186
Selected Bibliography188
Index192

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