Tag: mythology

Literary Demons

3 Chilling Demons From Mythology That Inspired Fictional Works

For centuries, we have believed in supernatural deities and afflictions caused by malevolent spirits. But these dark beliefs have proven to be more than simple evil; they serve as plot devices in their own ancient histories and sources. And in modern days, we still feature demonic characters both serving the good and bad. Here are the top three demons in mythology that have inspired various works of fiction.

 

 

 

1. Azazel

 

 

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Image Via Nestor Avalos

 

 

Azazel is a very well known name throughout the world. Islam, Christianity, and Judaism all recognize the name in some way, shape, or form. However, the name Azazel is most commonly noted as one of the many fallen angels who followed Lucifer in his downfall.

 

Azazel is noted also as being one of God’s strongest and most intelligent lieutenants in the angelic army. After supposedly being cast out, the demon is referenced in the Dead Sea Scrolls. Azazel was primarily held responsible for teaching man the ways of brutality and warfare. With his influence, the fallen angel supposedly corrupted most of humanity.

 

The name Azazel has been given to a number of characters and works over the years. Both Marvel and DC have characters with the name that exist in their separate universe, and there are various literary works with the title such as the novel series by Boris Akunin or the 2008 novel by Youseff Ziedan.

 

 

 

2. Leviathan

 

 

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Image Via Brian Godawa

 

 

Many people fear the ocean, and we may have this huge bestial force for instilling this fear into us. The Leviathan is mentioned several times in different mythologies and stories of old. Most often, it is depicted as an enormous fish or other huge sea dwelling animal.

 

The Leviathan’s role is seen as somewhat of a rampaging beast, as well as a victory or sacrifice during the end times. It is hinted that when the world will end, the Leviathan will perish and feed humanity. Yeah, that’s how big it’s supposed to be.

 

This huge demonic being has been an inspiration for countless sea monsters in literature, film, and even history. Many sailors wrote about their encounters in strange new seas with unknown, huge monsters that dwell just below the waves. The Leviathan has inspired the likes of the Kraken and features in a multitude of films.

 

 

 

3. Oni

 

 

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Image Via Kappa – The Kappapedia

 

 

The Oni are a class of supernatural spirits of Japanese myth and folklore. As a type of yōkai, these beings are able to accomplish feats that humans can only dream of. Oni are born when corrupt and immoral humans die and are reincarnated in one of the Buddhist Hells.

 

Oni are usually depicted as enormous, hulking ogres that mainly carry around huge clubs as weapons. They are often depicted as antagonistic towards humans and are mainly villainous in their roles in many stories. They terrorize mankind any way possible, and will even resort to eating humans as a form of consumption as well as spite.

 

The Oni have gone on to inspire even more stories about themselves as years have passed. They have been included in many Japanese fairy tales such as Momotaro among others.

 

 

 

Featured Image Via Gizmodo

arthur rackham

10 Quirky Folklore Facts for #FolkloreThursday

Evil mummified hands, dental hygiene, and dirty, disembodied Japanese foot spirits. Here are ten tweets about folklore around the world.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Just a reminder that zero out of ten dentists recommend kissing a donkey for strong teeth. Happy Folklore Thursday!

 

Feature Image Via Renegade Tribune

percy jackson

Here’s What to Read if You Love Mythology

We’ve all heard mythological tales of monsters and guardians, good versus evil and so on from our parents and grandparents, regardless of what culture we grew up in.  Stories of gods, angels, and other worlds are commonplace. Mythological worlds act as a strong base for memorable fictional worlds created by authors.

 

Modern mythological fiction provides an unseen, complex, deep and often dark sides of these mythological worlds. 

 

Here are what I believe to be some of the best, most engrossing works of mythological fiction.

 

1. The Percy Jackson Series by Rick Riordan 

 

Image Via How to Read Me

Image Via How to Read Me

 

Ordinary boy Percy Jackson finds out that the Greek Gods are not just real, but he is the son the son of Poseidon; a big responsibility rests upon the young shoulders. 

Author Rick Riordan blends the ancient Greek Myths with the modern day in a perfect harmony, the formal behind his critically acclaimed success. He also wrote about Egyptian and Norse Mythology in a similar fashion.

 

2. Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman

 

Image Via Goodreads

Image Via Goodreads 

 

Neil Gaiman has gathered the great Norse myths, which have inspired countless modern cultures, and retold them unlike ever before, from the dawn the the world to the halls of Valhalla.

The collection of these myths by Gaiman was somewhat essential since unlike all other forms of mythologies, Norse myths had not be compiled in any ancient scriptures. So this book acts as a hub, a compilation of the Norse Myths. 

 

3. Shiva Trilogy by Amish Tripathi  

 

Image Via Deccan Chronicle

Image Via Deccan Chronicle

 

Shiva is one of the three main Hindu Deities. Amish imagines Shiva as a common man, and depicts his journey and rise to Godhood. Set in the Indus Valley Civilization, the world’s oldest civilization, the trilogy blends history, fiction and mythology, while exploring the lives of various less-known gods, their contributions to the world and their rise to Godhood with Shiva.

 

4. The Divine Comedy by Dante Alighieri

 

Image Via raseef5.com

Image Via raseef5.com

 

I am not certain if this book belongs in this list or is it perhaps the parent of the genre. Dante’s The Divine Comedy  is a 14th-century three-part poem, beginning with Dante’s Inferno. Dante is led through Hell, guided by the ancient Roman poet Virgil in the first poem. It is followed by Purgatorio and Paradiso which tour purgatory and paradise. 

The Divine Comedy has had a lasting effect on the literature and philosophy of the world. In fact, many of depictions of Hell and Paradise common in art and literature originate from this very poem. 

 

 

Featured Image Via How to Read Me