Earth Day: origins and mythology

Earth Day: origins and mythology
Inuit Creation

Inuit Creation

Each year, events are held worldwide (more than 175 countries) to honor the Earth Day and to increase awareness and appreciation of the Earth’s natural environment.

In 2009, the United Nations designated April 22 International Mother Earth Day and is planned its celebration until (at least) 2015.

The name was established by John McConnell in 1969 at a UNESCO lecture in San Francisco, year when environmental problems (pollution, overexploitation of raw materials, droughts…) were touching a peak never before knowing.

However, all of the cultures had honored Nature not only one day but every day, as a constant in their lives, because the ancient farming civilizations knew (better than us) the importance of being in line with the unique place where we can live: our Earth.

Gaia, the goddess of Earth in old Greek religion, was one of the primordial deities. She was the great mother of other gods and goddesses, of the Titans and the Giants (they were born from her union with Uranus, the sky), and of the sea-gods (born from her union with Pontus, the sea).

Terra was the equivalent goddess in old Roman religion.

Demeter or Ceres

Demeter or Ceres

Mother Earth Powwow is the North American version of Gaia and an intertribal dance is celebrated every year: http://youtu.be/64cmSDwG4cU

La Pachamama is the South American goddess of Earth and Evo Morales was honoring her when he was named President of Bolivia.

The first couple of heaven and earth appears also in Africa: Nzambi and Nzambi-Mpungu in Gabon or Olorum and Oduna in Nigeria.

In China, the mythological meaning of yin (Earth) and yang (sky) is parallel and in Indochina, Laos, Thailand or Camboia, she is named Phra Mae Thorani.

For Eskimos, Sila, Hila, Sla or Tla (depending on the area) is the Nature, mother (or father) of everything.

Therefore, maybe we need more than a Happy Eartday, maybe we need to learn about our roots… anyway, a beginning is a beginning.

Enjoy the Earthday.

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I was born in England and I started working as a furniture restorer in an antique shop, what motivated me to study art in Spain, the temple of painting. There, I knew closely the work of the great Baroque painters and I did a PhD on Carreño. I have been working in museums and writing in art magazines.

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