Pandora and the Jar that changed the World

January 3, 2010 at 2:27 pm (Mythology) (, , , , )

Can we blame Pandora for all the evils in the world?  In Greek mythology, from Hesoid’s Works and Days, Pandora is the reason mankind became corrupt… here’s the story in a nutshell:

Prometheus outwitted Zeus, stole fire from heaven and gave it to mankind. Zeus, in vengeance, promised to give mortals an evil thing, ‘for which they will be very glad while they embrace it for their own destruction‘ : The creation of woman. A few Gods are involved in the creation: Athena teaches Pandora a woman’s work, Aphrodite gives her charm and desire and Hermes ensures she has a shameless mind and deceitful nature. Pandora is then taken to Epimetheus as a gift (Prometheus brother) which he foolishly accepts. Epimetheus gives her permission to open the jar that was sent with her, which she was told never to open, (also known as ‘Pandora’s Box’ in today’s stories) and all earthly misery flies out, except for hope (which was under the jar’s rim) which was left as consolation.

By the way, before Pandora, a tribe of men lived on earth with no evil, hard work or sickness. Basically, it paints a picture that women are the downfall of mankind.

This myth is narrated from a male-dominated perspective, but that’s how it was back then. The women were ‘possessions’ of men. And, apparently, the root of all evil, which is pretty much the same as christian belief, where Eve eats the apple from the tree.

Anyways… Pandora was curious by nature, so i’m pretty confident the jar would’ve been opened regardless of being given permission. But what if the jar was still closed? Would there be disease? Would we have over populated the Earth because we didn’t die? Would pain not exist and would we all dance on rainbows? Or are we just giving Pandora the blame?


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