A Blog on Mythology and occasionally on Reality.

This is a Blog on Mythology, both Indian and World and especially the analysis of the myths.

In effect, the interpretation of the inherent Symbolism.


Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Twin-ship and Dualism

The concept of twins has a sense of inseparable dualism inherent in it. Let us read about some of the most famous twins in Mythology, before we try to understand the actual meaning or the implication of this conflict.

Cain and Abel – Biblical Myth
As per this Biblical myth, Cain and Abel were the sons of Adam and Eve with Cain being the elder of the two. Cain grew up to be a farmer and Abel became a shepherd. One day both made their offerings to God, Cain, the best fruit of the soil and Abel the best offspring of his life-stock. God was pleased with the offering of Abel which made Cain jealous. God tried to reason out with Cain, but Cain continued to feel rejected. Soon this showed up in the relationship of the brothers and once over an argument, Cain killed Abel. When God came to know about it, he cursed Cain that he would be continuously sought after by mankind for killing his brother. Later Cain was banished on the Eastern side of Eden and went on to become the first urbanite.

Ahura Mazda and Ahriman – Persian Myth
According to Persian Mythology, Ahura Mazda was characterised by goodness, light and was responsible for all the good things created in the universe. Ahriman was his strongest opponent and stood for all the wrong and evil in this world, and is also responsible for creating all the negatives in the universe. The Persian mythology delves in great details of the constant conflict between the two, with the ultimate victory of Ahura Mazda over Ahriman.

Romulus and Remus – Roman Myth
Romulus and Remus were the twin sons of the god Mars and Rhea. However, both of them were abandoned at birth and left in a basket and set afloat in a river. Later they were found under a fig tree and were suckled by a she-wolf. The abandoned children were then raised by a shepherd family. Later when the boys grew up, they decided to form a city. By following the flights of birds and the signs in the sky each decided to build a section of the city. However, the signs also determined that Romulus’s section would be twice as big as that of Remus. Remus angry and jealous of the larger share of his brother got into an argument, which led to Romulus killing Remus. Later Romulus went on build the city which was named Rome after him.

When we analyze the myths, one thing is common and that is the constant conflict that we see in our daily lives. This conflict is both inevitable and unavoidable. The twin-ship brings out the inevitability of it and the nature of the conflict brings out the coexistence of the dual forces of nature in our lives.

The Cain and Abel myth brings forth the sociological conflict that exists between the shepherds and the farmers, and this constant conflict today has transformed into the infamous urban and rural conflict. With each trying to impress ones supremacy over the other, this is both inevitable and unavoidable. The Persian myth brings forth the existing dualism of good and evil present in our world. Each power of good and evil lead to the destruction of the other, and through it the world has developed and has survived.

This dualism can also be seen in the constant presence of the conflict of good and evil, right and wrong in our daily lives. Our daily lives are a constant fight of these opposites and on a given day, any one wins and on the other day the other force. Our daily life is an effort of striving for this balance between the opposites. Which twin dies on a given day is based on the circumstances and the individual’s ability to resist the pressures of the other.

Majority of the twin myths are a fictional symbol of this conflict. No one is bad and evil is never defeated for good. The evil only enhances the relevance and the need of good and stands as a test to one’s ability to strike this constant balance that life presents us daily.

Over the next few days, we will discuss some more aspects of twins in Mythology.

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