Greek Mythology: Ages of Man
Greek mythology says that humans have gone through five stages of existence.
It started out with the Golden Age. This was a time of absolute joy. It was always spring, as the weather never changed and seasons didn’t exist. The sun was always shining and providing sufficient warmth. Everyone would dance, sing, and be merry all day. There was no work; food grew abundantly among the bushes and trees with more than enough for everyone, and so there was no need to make money.
All humans would live to a very old age and remain youthful in appearance their whole lives. When they died, it was painless and peaceful, and they would transform into spirit guardians who protected against evil and disease.
Cronus, member of the first generation of Titans, was ruler of the gods and men. The humans directly interacted with the gods and goddesses in a peaceful manner.
Next is the Silver Age, when Cronus is overthrown by his son, Zeus, who takes over. This is when Pandora’s box released evil upon the world. Now humans only lived to be 100, and their short period of adulthood was full of constant strife and dispute with one another. Zeus also created the seasons, causing men forced to do labor, build homes, and seek shelter. They also had to gather and prepare their own food now.
Humans stopped worshipping the gods and goddesses and now began to rebel against them. Zeus was outraged and therefore destroyed the human race to start over.
And then came the Bronze Age, a new age of humans created by Zeus from the ash tree. These humans were violent, angry, and constantly at war with one another. This period ended with a great flood.
The Heroic Age was a turning point, as the deterioration of humanity was now beginning to improve. This is the time of “heroes” — mortal beings conducting divine acts. This age of humans died and went to Elysium — an afterlife reserved for the righteous that promised happiness and fulfillment.
Finally, the Iron Age came along, a time of constant misery and suffering. Children disobeyed their parents, brother and sister fought with one another, bad men used lies to disguise themselves as good men, humans became incapable of feeling shame or humility, babies are born with grey hair, there’s no stopping evilness, and all gods and goddesses have completely given up on humanity.
Does the Iron Age sound all too familiar? Is it possible that we are currently experiencing the Iron Age, and that humanity has experienced all of the prior ages?
The legend says that there will be a return of the golden age, when the gods and goddesses come back, and Paradise is restored.
Hinduism: Kali Yuga
In Hinduism, the Sanskrit scriptures say that time is not linear, but cyclical — and that humanity goes through four stages in this cycle.
- Satya Yuga (Golden Age) — The happiest and most abundant period of all makes up 40% of the cycle. Humans are joyful, youthful, honest, faithful, and at peace with one another. The weather is always nice. There is no disease or fear.
- Treta Yuga (Silver Age) — Making up about 30% of the cycle, dignity and health decline. Humanity becomes divided, leaders are formed, and war breaks out. The weather is more extreme.
- Dwapara (Bronze Age) — 20% of the cycle consists of poor and weaker health, more fighting, tiredness, and a lack of fulfillment. Disease increases. Only a minority remains youthful in old age.
- Kali Yuga (Iron Age) — The shortest yet darkest part of the cycle at 10% is the age of Kali Yuga, when humans are killing one another, disloyal, dishonest, promiscuous, and completely unrestrained. The human diet is dirty and the environment is unclean.
There is great debate about the specific dates of each Yuga. Most would agree that we are currently in the age of Kali Yuga, although this is also still debated among Hinduism. Some have prophesied that Kali Yuga will end in 2025, while others say we still have over 400,000 years to go!
Egyptian Mythology: Reign of Ra
In Egyptian mythology, a “golden age” period takes place shortly after creation, when the sun god Ra rules over everyone. This is a time of joy, abundance, and stability. Humans lived peacefully among the gods and goddesses. Ra is the keeper of ma’at (harmony and balance) which is required to maintain order and keep the world together. Ra rules with “the Eye of Ra” who is part of him yet separate from him at the same time — she is an extension of himself, while simultaneously an independent goddess.
Book of the Heavenly Cow is an Egyptian pyramid text describing the fall of mankind. Sun god Ra becomes much older and weaker, and now the humans believe he is no longer fit to rule, so they rebel and plot against him. Seeking help from the gods and goddesses, Eye of Ra becomes Hathor and goes on a rampage against humanity. Hathor then becomes bloodthirsty Sekhmet and seeks to destroy all of humanity. In attempt to stop her, Ra tricks her by pouring beer dyed red into the field. Thinking this is blood, Sekhmet drinks all the beer and becomes so intoxicated that she passes out until waking up again as the peaceful Hathor.
Now only some of humanity has survived, but Ra is too upset to continue his reign, so Nun (waters of chaos) transforms into a celestial cow and ascends Ra to the heavens. He orders Isis and Osiris to take over ruling humanity. Now that Ra has left it is up to the humans, with the help of the “lesser gods”, to maintain ma’at. The responsibility of keeping harmony and balance is no longer up to sun god Ra, but up to humanity.
Book of the Dead describes that time is both linear and cyclical, and that the world will come to an end by turning to its original form as water, just for creation to begin again with the coming of another golden age. This cycle is incredibly long on a human scale, but merely the blink of an eye from a Godly perspective.
“This cyclical time was human time; it was to last ‘until the return of the period of linear time,’ the time of the new golden age that would arise from a new creation. Thus the world would come to an end only to be reborn, in an eternal cycle, a rhythm resembling a vast cosmic breathing. For the creator, each of these immensely long cyclical periods would be no longer than a passing day.”(Daily Life of the Egyptian Gods by Dimitri Meeks, Christine Favard-Meeks)
Norse Mythology: Ragnarök
Norse mythology describes a great battle at the end of the world known as “Ragnarök.” In this gory battle, with many natural disasters, everyone dies — including the gods and goddesses. Unfortunately, much of Norse mythology has not been written down and preserved the same way other cultures have. Some claim that this is the end, and that after this battle comes nothingness. However there are at least two poems describing how some benevolent gods will return and create a new world: identical to the early world, green and luscious, full of gold. It also suggests that with the return of good will also bring the return of evil.
Researchers have discovered that ancient societies were more far advanced five thousand years ago than they were five hundred years ago, using technology and mathematical skills in 2000 B.C. that could never be replicated during the middle ages from around 1,000-1,500 A.D. A great example is the complex archeological design of pyramids and columns, requiring advanced geometrical knowledge that was lost during the middle ages.
Many ancient societies including Egypt, Indian, Mesopotamian, Babylonian, were aware of existing in a declining state of humanity as they attempting to cling to olden days while presuming much more strife and difficulties ahead.
“Understanding that consciousness may indeed rise and fall with the motions of the heavens gives meaning to ancient myth and folklore and puts anomalous cultures and artifacts, such as the Antikythera device and the Babylon battery, into a historical context that makes sense. For example, the battery was developed at least 2,000 years ago, lost in the dark ages, then reinvented by Volta in the post renaissance period. The same thing goes for prosthetic devices, brain surgery, and knowledge of a heliocentric system and advanced engineering, etc. They were discovered, lost, then rediscovered. It also speaks to why so many ancient cultures appear to have been fascinated with the stars and provides us with a workable paradigm in which to understand history. It could also help us identify the forces that propelled the Renaissance and that may be accelerating consciousness in our current era. Myth and folklore, the scientific language of yore, provide a deeper look at consciousness throughout the ages.”ancient-origins.net
Many ancient myths, as well as modern evidence, suggests that humanity once existed in a far more peaceful and far more advanced state before declining through the dark ages. Observing the rotations of the planets, we can see that time is not just linear but also cyclical. Is it possible that we are living through a cycle? Is there hope for both our past and our future?
Is a time of darkness all part of the divine plan? You could say that we only experience soul growth during challenging times, when we are forced to grow stronger. Do we choose to go through the light and the dark? Or on the other hand, is this an endless cycle of doom that must be overcome in order to prevent an infinite return of darkness? Is it possible for humanity to exist through an eternal Golden Age?