Audio Podcast

Episode 700: Gods and Heroes Episode 01 – The Greek Beginnings

Greek Mythology | The Beginnings of Things

In the beginning, there was Chaos, a formless being, a gaping abyss that was everything there was in the world. Vast and unknown, unexplorable, unexplainable yet intriguing enough to have followers until this very day. People who are tired of order have always tended to worship Chaos for there is no more exciting and terrifying journey than that into the unknown.
Out of Chaos came three primordial elements or gods. There was Gaia, the mother of all things, and Tartarus, a big cave-like doomed to be a prison under the earth. Maybe that’s why people who believe in heaven and hell still look beneath their feet whenever they think about hell, which sounds pretty much like Tartarus from ancient Greek mythology. But let’s get back to Gaia. Sometimes, Gaia was called mother Earth. Who am I to say what kind of mother she was? But I know for sure that without the third primordial god, there would be no more gods, no more titans, and of course, no humans.
The third primordial god was Eros, sexual desire incarnated in one god, within Eros lie the greatest joy, addiction, and devastating power humans and even gods ever had, but at the same time, there was life and posterity.
Everything and everybody else came after those three primordial gods. There were the oceans, rivers, mountains and many more but the one worthy of remembrance was Uranus, the sky, the god that covered the earth and gave a purpose to people thousands of years later, for can you imagine life where we cannot aim at the stars and reach out to be the best we can be, but sometimes even that led us to destroy each other, but once more, this is not about who we came to be, but how we came to be according to Greek mythology.
Gaia, the first mother, mated with Uranus and don’t be alarmed at the notion of people mating within their close families because that is a recurring theme in mythology and it was not unheard of in ancient Greek society as well. The upper crust of society in ancient Greece had this going when brothers and sisters mated to keep their bloodline pure as they thought that was a big deal. Luckily, in modern times, we don’t hold such extreme ideas, or at least most of us don’t. But some people still believe their bloodline is godlike and they tend to protect it as a holy relic, but let’s not get stranded in political and social thoughts and stay focused on our story today, The Beginnings of Things.
Gaia bore magnificent children; some were frightening and others were perfect. I can’t say that Uranus was a loving father or even a good father, but come to think of it, it is not that easy to love children with fifty heads and a hundred arms, so he started banishing his children to Tartarus, which became the place of choice to incarcerate unwanted children, sinners, and random people the gods chose to punish.
However, with practice, thanks to Eros that kept it interesting, Gaia got better, and bore Uranus perfect children, the Titans. Huge and magnificent with no flaws or monster-like shapes. Uranus can finally have children he could be proud of, but Uranus started to feel threatened. His children, the Titans, were more beautiful, and even stronger, he sensed that the day would come when they would supplant him. So he decided to throw them in Tartarus not to suffer or be tortured but to be locked up in there forever so he could enjoy all the world on his own, with his Gaia, of course.
But the thing Uranus failed to realize that Gaia was the mother of all, and it was not going to be easy on her to see her pride and joy in this world cast to Tartarus, one by one, so she came up with a plan to stop this madness and helped her son Kronos dethrone his father and take his place, and there is a strange theme that keeps occurring in Greek mythology, and even in some more modern accounts about sons being threatened or jealous of their fathers, which would lead eventually to their killing their fathers or castrating them, or both as it is the case with our friend, Kronos, who did both to his father. Maybe Freud took it a little too far, but who knows, maybe we all have a little bit of Kronos inside of us, but once more let’s not stray too far from our story and get back to what happened.
Gaia helped Kronos and his siblings to escape Tartarus, kill Uranus and take his place as rulers of the universe, and that ushered in the age of Titans. Kronos was the leader of the Titans and thus the leader of the universe. He took Rhea, his sister, as his wife and they had children of their own, but the words Uranus said to his son before passing on resonated in Kronos’ mind. Uranus cursed Kronos and told him that one of his children would do to him the same thing he did to his father. So history repeated itself, well, in a more creative and secure way this time.
Kronos knew what his mother did, so he couldn’t trust Rhea to keep the children in her womb, so he decided to swallow them and keep them in his own trusted belly, but little did he know that there was no stronger and fiercer power in the world than that of a mother deprived of her own children, but this is another story for next time.
Now I will leave you with a story from my Short Story Collection, Gods and Heroes, describing what happened during that time, and this story focuses on what happened with Uranus and His Kids. The story will tell you what happened with a little twist.

Uranus and His Kids

In the Palace
In a palace made of stars, Uranus’ swagger never faltered, especially these days as he had hired a biographer, for he felt his life was full of stories that needed to be preserved for posterity, although he never let any of his kids out of their mother’s womb except for the cyclops whom he banished into the depths of Tartarus.
“He wandered gloriously in the moonlight, naked for all to see and wonder how they came to be, his great…” Uranus said to the biographer who was busy taking dictation.
“What the hell are you talking about? Why did you hire this fool, anyway?” Gaea said as she entered the big hall from a big hatch in the middle of the room.
“Calm down, woman. I was just telling my little friend here… What was your name again?” Uranus asked the biographer.
“My name is Hesiod, your majesty. My mother gave me that name after…”
“Hesiod, my dear. Look at me. Do you really think that I give a damn about who gave you that ugly name. I was just trying to be polite in front of my wife.” Uranus said to Hesiod then he continued talking to Gaea.
“My dear. I was just telling our little friend here, Hesibor.”
“It’s Hesiod, your majesty.”
Uranus did not seem to be too pleased with being interrupted.
”Look, Hesiball. Interrupt me one more time, and I will send you straight into my wife’s womb to be in the gracious company of my cute little kids. They are called the titans, but do not be afraid. I’m sure you will like them. I’ll shove you inside myself.”
Hesiod was trembling like a leaf when he felt a gentle hand as if made of leaves touching his shoulders, then he heard a soft and sweet voice whispering in his ears.
“Don’t worry, my dear. He’s just too proud of his genitals. I’ll see to that. Anyway, nothing you should concern yourself with. Why don’t you go outside and take a break? I need to speak to my husband alone.” Gaea said.
“Whatever you command, your majesty.” Hesiod said that then rushed out of the hall.
“Why are you scaring this little fella? Weren’t you the one who sent for him to write your glorious story? Leave the little guy alone.” Gaea said.
“You see that’s why I don’t like the new generation. They have no respect. That’s why I send them back into your womb.” Uranus said.
“Well, as for the hundred-handed ones. I’ll give you that. I had a hard time breast feeding them, and the cyclops, you said they were ugly with one eye and that freaked you out, but my little titans were just perfect. They were beautiful and cute. All with one head and two eyes. I still don’t get it.”
“They’re feisty, rebellious, especially Kronos. I can feel defiance in his eyes. If I let him be, he would take my throne from me at the soonest chance he gets.”
“So, who are you writing this biography for, huh? If you are not going to let any of our children live, who is going to read about your great deeds, if there were any?”
“What did you say? You dare tell me that I don’t have great deeds. You were so lonely before me and now you just want me in your bed all the time. Talk about great deeds.”
“I want in my bed because I want some children to raise, you fool. I’m not so crazy about the way you do it. How would I know. You’re the only man around. No one else to compare to.”
“So, that’s why you want them to live. You are sick and tired of me and you want someone else in your bed.”
“I really don’t get it how far in the future, they call us women naggy. They should come and see you. I bet you nag more than any woman from the future.”
“No, honey. I read about that, too. We will still be as naggy, but it seems men in the future will take control of all sources of mass media and they get to design any stereotypes they want. Genius.”
“Stop that misogynist talk already. Remember who made you.” Gaea said that and left the hall as Uranus called Hesiod back in to continue working on his biography.
“Well, are you ready to continue?” Uranus said to Hesiod.
“Yes, your majesty.” Hesiod said.
“And he spent his days walking in a starry cloak that had a big opening in the front to show the beauty of his gracious body and great balls moving back and forth in the wind to cool them off after a hot night in bed with Gaea, and his gigantic…”
Hesiod continued to write cursing the moment he asked the muses to know the story of creation. The only useful thing he learned was that there was Chaos before Uranus and Gaea, and then everything he heard from Uranus was a nonstop pornographic scene he knew for sure he had to leave out as he was intending on writing a religious book, and none of what Uranus said would make the cut, but he had to keep listening to Uranus bragging about his genitals and sex abilities.
“What the hell are you bragging about? You’re gods. Besides, you’re just two with nothing else to do. I bet you’ve had more practice than the whole human race.” Hesiod thought to himself while he kept on a big smile as he was taking dictation from Uranus.

In Gaea’s Womb
Gaea returned to her womb and had every intention to go on with her plans. Uranus was simply unbearable, and she could not live a day longer without her children.
“Come out my sweet little titans.” Gaea whispered.
Twelve fully grown beautiful specimen came out and all rushed to her as she gathered them all inside her arms in one big hug. Then there were hands everywhere as the hundred-hand ones always craved a family hug.
“What’s up, mom? How’s that bitch treating you?” Kronos said.
“Don’t talk like that about your father.” Gaea said.
“My father. He threw me back in here never to see the light of day again, and you expect me to give him love. I can’t do that. When are we gonna whack that son of a bitch?” Kronos said.
“That’s what happens when I don’t send you to a proper school. Anyway, How many times did I tell you we’re not going to WHACK him; we’re going to hack him with a sickle. I want this son of a bitch castrated. I can’t stand listening to his bragging about his balls anymore. He should have some real balls, like a man. Like you, my boy.” Gaea said.
“That’s dope, ma. I like the plan, and I like the way you think. Just let me out and I will show you who’s man in this family.” Kronos said.
“Well, since your brothers and sisters didn’t say a word, I guess you’re all on board, right?” Gaea said.
“Yeah, Ma.” the eleven other titans all answered as one.
Then Gaea felt hundreds of hands from her three mute monsters, so she turned towards them and said, “Yes, yes, you too; I’ll get you out. Anyway, I haven’t had a good night’s sleep since you father put you back inside.”
Gaea then turned back and said to Kronos, “I want you to be ready. I will lure him to bed tonight, and then…”
Kronos interrupted, “What do you mean lure him to bed, ma? He’s always in bed. You’re always doing it. We’re here, remember? The Acoustical advantage is fantastic in here, ma.”
“Alright, alright. When he co mes to bed tonight, I will distract him while you get out with that sickle I gave you the other day and I want you to castrate him right away. Don’t take any chances. If he has the chance to get back up on his feet, he will take you down.” Gaea said.
“Cool. Daddy’s sleeping tonight with no balls. That’s dope.” Kronos said.
“Where did you learn to talk like that?” Gaea said.
“Well, you told us ma, your womb holds the seeds to all future generations. Well, I sow some seeds from the future, and out grew some cool kids with loose clothes like that apron my dad wears all the time, and I learned to speak like them.” Kronos said.
“You should have never looked that far into the future. This generation will be the end of me. I know it. Anyway, does everybody know what to do, especially you, Kronos?” Gaea asked.
They all answered as one, “Yes, ma.”
Gaea thought to herself, “Damn it, he taught it to all his brothers and sisters.”

In Gaea and Uranus’ Bedchamber
“Come closer. Don’t you miss me, already?” Gaea said.
“How can I miss anyone else? You’re the only woman alive in this world.” Uranus said laughing and he went on to do it, again.
“Now boys, now!” Gaea shouted.
Out of her womb came Kronos in full glory… and baggy pants… with his sickle held tightly in his hands. He struck it once and down came his father’s genitals, and Uranus’ great balls were great no more.
“What have you done; you fool?” Uranus screamed in agony.
“Dad, from these balls I came and to these balls I should return.” Kronos said laughing.
All Kronos’ brothers and sisters followed, even the hundred-handed ones. They also called the cyclops back from Tartarus to come and see their dying father. They all rejoiced their freedom once again and all hailed Kronos as their king.
“You hear me now, boy, and you hear me well, for in the same way you judge others, you shall be judged. Curse you and curse all you brothers and sisters. Your own offspring will take power right from your hands and will throw you down into the abyss.” Uranus said these words and said no more.
“Yeah, yeah dad. Do you really think I’m a fool like you? Don’t ever trust a woman’s womb to hold your kids forever. One day, they will all come out. I have better plans.” Kronos whispered in his dead father’s ears.
That night, they all celebrated and had a great feast, in which Kronos chose his sister Rhea as his wife and ruled as king of all beings, the titans and everybody else.

Comprehension Check

Choose the best option to answer the questions below:

Which of the following is not among the first three primordial elements or gods?

Which of the following gods came first?

Who did Gaia mate with?

Why did Uranus send his offspring back to their mother's womb or to Tartarus?

Why did we say that history repeats itself?

What does Chaos look like?

What's the connection between Tartarus and the traditional image of hell?

Who do you think is Hesiod from the story 'Uranus and His Kids'?

Who eventually became the leader of the titans?

How do you describe the mood the story 'Uranus and His Kids'?


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<a href="" target="_self">Danny Ballan</a>

Danny Ballan


Danny is a podcaster, teacher, and writer. He worked in educational technology for over a decade. He creates daily podcasts, online courses, educational videos, educational games, and he also writes poetry, novels and music.

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