We are pleased to participate in the A to Z Blog Challenge (http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/). The Story Crossroads theme for this year is Beating the Odds…Lucky Folktales Around the World to Brighten Your Day. Each post highlights that the stars aligned and what would have normally been…bad…turned out after all. Considering what we – as humankind – have experienced the past year, how nice is it to remember that all of us can “beat the odds” to some level in our lives.
And we’ll admit now…some are actually myths, legends, or epics rather than only limited to folktales. So is that a type of “loading the dice”? Ah, but the stories were too wonderful to pass by.
DRAGON-LADY (GODDESS, REALLY)-
The Draco constellation is composed of 15 stars in the northern sky. While people tend to be familiar with many of the Greek constellation stories, it is actually unknown which myth was meant to be linked to this Draco constellation. Though, considering the vast number of dragon stories, here is an older story from Babylonia. This story features Marduk, who is a Zeus-like god of gods and oversees storms. Marduk could be good or bad, though in this case he was good. There was chaos in the universe caused by the olds gods and Marduk along with other “new” gods needed to bring order so all creatures could thrive. The main threat was Ti’amat, the dragon goddess that was also the primordial goddess of the sea. She simply was chaos itself. The story comes from the Enûma Elish, the Babylonian epic of creation story. Often it is compared to Gilgamesh.
How dangerous is Ti’amat?
This dragon goddess was the oldest and strongest of the old gods for Marduk to face. She spawned many monsters including the first dragons that she had filled with poison instead of blood. While she may not be a dragon/dragoness, though most sources say to trust that she was a dragon/dragoness. And other lovely things she spawned? Well…fish-men, scorpion-men, serpent-men, goat-men and many others that were sent to attack others.
Old gods created chaos. New gods wanted order. When new gods saw Ti’amat and monsters, they ran away except for Marduk. Success! He cut the dragon in half-part became sky, part became earth. With other bits of Ti’amat, Marduk created constellations/stars to guide and as a calendar for humans.
Marduk was lucky to defeat Ti’amat by himself. Considering the number of monsters and how Ti’amat herself was formidable, that seems to be more than skills. Truly had to have luck. And wasn’t that nice of Marduk to create the stars so we can figure out directions and navigate as humans? We also appreciate this earth. Pondering that phrase “mother earth” a little? I am!
Finding the Story and Background:
“The Constellations: How They Came to Be” by Roy A. Gallant, pp. 34-36 can be found online to purchase here – https://www.amazon.com/Constellations-How-They-Came-be/dp/0590075527/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=%22The+Constellations%3A+How+They+Came+to+Be%22+by+Roy+A.+Gallant&qid=1617665314&s=books&sr=1-1
Please share in the comments…or anything on your mind. While you enjoy this blog, Story Crossroads has year-round offerings with virtual as well as proper-distanced/masked/outdoors.