A lot of us have been introduced to Greek mythology from Disney’s Hercules animated movie, the story of how Hercules’s love for Megara helps him become a hero, and Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson series books were first exposure to Greek myths for some fans. Overall, Greek tales were liked by a lot of creators who showcased them in a lot of fictional media and various art forms. On an unrelated note, Greek gods had bodies which are the dream of many men. But today, we will be talking about something less known to all of us, the creation of the universe, In the previous saga I discussed the Nordic version, and now we will see the Greek version.
In the beginning, there was only chaos. What is chaos? Is it a state of destruction? Is it the aftermath state of a supermarket where they announce a clearance sale with a 60% discount? But here, the Greeks have a different interpretation, chaos is simply referred to as nothingness. From chaos sprang Darkness and Night, and the dazzling union of these two birthed Light and Day, since there was no concept of time, everything happened simultaneously, further from chaos Gaia, the earth and Tartarus, the caves and in the depths of the earth were also born. What are these entities? They are elementals, they have no persona, no form, they are the first order, The Primordial Deities, and these were the forms which further birthed the gods we know.
The Children of Heaven and Earth
The void of the world was filled when Gaia gave birth to Pontus, the waters, and Ouranos, the sky also called himself as Uranus, the name which causes giggles to the young and old alike, The Primordial deities ruled what they themselves represented, Ouranos ruled the skies and heavens, Gaia ruled the mountains, valleys and caves. They could form themselves and traverse what they ruled, the glorious union of Gaia and Ouranos gave birth to 12 entities, six male and six female, they were called the titans, the Second Order of Divine Beings, and little did Ouranos know one of his own offsprings would depose him. This event triggered the start of time, one of the offspring had dominion over time. The lord of the skies not content with 12 strong children, mated again and had two sets of unique triplets, the first set was the Cyclopes, and the second set was the Hecatonchires, they had a hundred hands and fifty heads, Ouranos found them repulsive, he was flabbergasted that his blood had birthed such abominations, his pride as an overlord was struck, he forced them back into Gaia, this can be understood as him forcing them into the depths of the earth, Tartarus. Gaia irrespective of how or what they were, loved them all dearly, this action left her deeply hurt, and this turned her tender loving nature into one which sought vengeance against her husband.
The Time God’s Patricide
Gaia, resentful of her husband’s nature, decides to kill him, all this while her insides ache from the Hecatonchires butting their heads and scratching the earth, the agony was unbearable, she visits Othrys, a mountain overlooking one of the most spectacular views ever known, but she was in too much ache to enjoy the views, there she crafted an unusual weapon, a sickle, capable of killing her husband, then she goes to all her children, asks them if they can help her in killing their father, and she promised the cosmos and the power to rule all of creation, we think the earth as kind, merciful and loving, but at the same time, deep inside the earth, flames burn beyond comprehension, this side of Gaia can be attributed to that. All her children refuse her, except the youngest one, Cronus. He was a titan full of desire. The two of them plot the assassination of Ouranos and decide to kill him at night as he mated with Gaia. Eventide approached and Cronus hid in the vicinity, As Ouranos approached to mate with Gaia, Gaia welcomed him with desire, and as he lustfully consumed her, Cronus seized the opportunity to strike, he gripped the sickle and with one slash he severed the genitals of his father, he held the organ dripping with blood and seed, like a trophy and threw across Greece, the scream of Ouranos was so dreadful that all living creatures feared it for they never heard such a sound. He cursed his son, “you are the ugliest, vilest thing I have ever seen, even uglier than the Hecatonchires, just like how you have wronged me, your own children will kill you”, he turned to his accomplice, his mother, she was shaking, gasping at the sight of everything that transpired. Cronus paid no heed to it, he had taken his place as ruler of the cosmos and time, and his deposed father was imprisoned even deeper than Tartarus. He freed the Hecatonchires and the Cyclopes from Gaia as he promised.
Cronus now the new undisputed ruler of all creation, married Rhea, another of the 12 Titans, Little did he know what all transpired after his father’s castration, pools of blood of Ouranos gave birth to vengeful beings, and the castrated genitals frothed in the waters created the most beautiful creation ever, perhaps this being was the inspiration for beauty. But, the words of his father rang in his head every day, Cronus feared his own death approaching, what will he do? That’s a story for another day.