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Publisher's Summary

Ever since the human mind developed the capacity for thought, people have pondered not just the meaning of life, but the genesis of the world, the universe, and all the natural marvels and precious forms of life within it. To this day, all of these intricate subjects continue to be matters of great contention, and they are often best encapsulated in the debate between creationism and evolution.  

On the one hand are those who are adamant that it was God, or some other supreme being, that designed and crafted every detail of the universe, as evidenced by the plethora of creation myths from various creeds and traditions. Among one of the most well-known etiological tales is the classic story of the Christian God who constructed the world in six days, and man and woman out of clay and man's rib, respectively. 

This is a concept that many still cling to today; approximately 38 percent of Americans believed in creationism in 2017, as reported by a Gallup Poll. Then, there are the more obscure narratives, such as the Japanese creation myth, which recounts how the god and goddess, Izanagi and Izanami, birthed from “elements mixed together with one germ of life,” shaped the Japanese islands with some mud and the aid of a sacred staff. The Mayans preached about Tepeu, the maker of all things, and Gucumatz, the “feathered spirit,” who produced the world with nothing but their thoughts, and placed on Earth the first quartet of humans fashioned out of white and yellow corn.  

©2018 Charles River Editors (P)2018 Charles River Editors

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