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Human Origins

Ancient Origins presents how human origins are explained through three different perspectives: a) science and scientific evidence, b) religions and creation stories and c) folklore and mythology.

Return of the Ancient Gods: The Resurgence of Paganism

Return of the Ancient Gods: The Resurgence of Paganism

Over the past two centuries, Europe has become increasingly secular. Scholars in fact no longer talk of the Christian West when they speak of Modern Europe and North America, but of the Secular West...
Two actors from the History Channel series “Vikings.”

Survey Shows About Half of Brits Wish They Were Descended from Vikings…and Many Probably Are!

If you’re from the British Isles, do you ever wonder if you’re a descendant of the marauding Vikings known sometimes to rape and pillage far from home and other times to set up settlements and...
Depiction of what the ancient 'Herto Man' may have looked like. His skull dates to 160,000 years ago.

A Serendipitous Skull Discovery in Ethiopia: Is This the Oldest Known Modern Man?

The El Niño weather phenomenon of 1996-97 wrecked havoc on many parts of the world; however, it also enabled one team of scientists to make an incredible discovery. When the skies cleared and the...
Stone Figures of Yandi and Huangdi, Yellow River Scenic Area, Zhengzhou, China

Mythical Ancient Emperors Who Fought Over the Birth of China - Who Started It?

One of the tallest statues in the world, standing 106 meters (347.77 ft.) tall, depicts two of the earliest Chinese emperors, Yandi, “The Flame Emperor” and Huangdi, “The Yellow Emperor.” The statues...
Beltane Fire Festival Celebrations.

The Pagan Wheel of the Year: What Elaborate Rituals and Events Mark this Sacred Cycle?

As more and more people describe themselves as ‘spiritual’ rather than religious, experts expect eco-friendly pagan movements will continue to grow. Already there are perhaps a million pagans in the...
Prehistoric Man.

Are Humans Just Self-Domesticated Apes?

One of the greatest mysteries is the origin of the human mind. Why are humans so different from other animals? Why do we have languages, religions, complex political and economic systems, and...
Detail of The Adda Seal. The figures can be identified as gods by their pointed hats with multiple horns. The figure with streams of water and fish flowing from his shoulders is Ea (Sumerian Enki), god of subterranean waters and of wisdom. Behind him stands Usimu, his two-faced vizier (chief minister). At the centre of the scene is the sun-god, Shamash (Sumerian Utu), with rays rising from his shoulders. He is cutting his way through the mountains in order to rise at dawn. To his left is a winged goddess, I

The Sumerian Seven: The Top-Ranking Gods in the Sumerian Pantheon

The Sumerian religion was polytheistic in nature, and the Sumerians worshipped a great number of deities. These deities were anthropomorphic beings, and were meant to represent the natural forces of...
Pandora, lifting the lid of the ‘pithos’. By Nicolas Régnier

Pandora: The Tale of a Good Girl Gone Bad?

When Pandora opened her box, as the Ancient Greek myth goes, all manner of evil was released into the world - ending the Golden Age of man and forsaking them to a life of death and rebirth. Being the...
Saraswati: Hindu Goddess of Aesthetics and Protector of the Universe

Saraswati: Hindu Goddess of Aesthetics and Protector of the Universe

A deity with as many attributes as arms, Saraswati (or Sarasvati) is the Hindu goddess of aesthetics. These include music, the arts, wisdom and learning. She can be compared, in many ways, to the...
Did The Neanderthals of Shanidar Cave Really Bury their Dead?

Did The Neanderthals of Shanidar Cave Really Bury their Dead?

There has long been debate among scientists regarding how Homo Sapiens and Neanderthals compared in terms of their cognition and intelligence. Some anthropologists believe Neanderthals were just as...
The Story of the Midgard Serpent: A Mythological Tailspin

The Story of the Midgard Serpent: A Mythological Tailspin

In Teutonic mythology the Middle Earth was wrapped round by the Midgard Serpent. Above this the gods built their mansions in the sky. Yet, curiously, in the lower world there lived all those people...
Sky Burial: Tibet’s Ancient Tradition for Honoring the Dead

Sky Burial: Tibet’s Ancient Tradition for Honoring the Dead

The tradition of Sky burials, which is also known by the name of ‘Celestial burial’, is particularly associated with the Tibetan culture, although it has existed in other civilizations throughout...
Deriv; Dramatic view from Mount Saint Helena, California (CC BY-SA 4.0), and photo of a Pomo native in a tule boat, circa 1924.

Ancient Age: The Coming of the Amerindians

A hundred and forty million years ago, Lake County, a part of Northern California, began with another of the ear-splitting rumbles that were a part of a continuing grand archaeological planet-wide...
Deliver Us From Evil: How Ancient People Protected Their Houses from Bad Spirits and Bad Luck?

Deliver Us From Evil: How Ancient People Protected Their Houses from Bad Spirits and Bad Luck?

Some people say it is not real, but try to tell them that bad spirits just entered their houses. They will feel insane and try to ignore it, but the unpleasant feeling will stay. In this case people...
Viva La Muerte! Santa Muerte, Folk Saint and Holy Personification of Death, Healer and Protector

Viva La Muerte! Santa Muerte, Folk Saint and Holy Personification of Death, Healer and Protector

Some people become devotees on their own initiative, actively seeking out Santa Muerte upon the recommendation of friends or family members. Others receive an unexpected call or visit from the Skinny...
The Comet that Changed Civilization – And May Do Again

The Comet that Changed Civilization – And May Do Again

On 30 September this year the first human spacecraft ever to orbit a comet was deliberately crashed onto its surface in order to get the closest possible pictures of the enigmatic celestial body...

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