Introduction

Welcome to the inaugural episode of “The Mythical Narrative” series on English Plus Podcast! Host Danny takes listeners on an exciting journey, exploring myths and legends from around the world. In this episode, we dive into the definitions of myths and legends, their roles in societies, and their enduring influence on culture.

Discover how these captivating narratives continue to shape modern storytelling through movies, books, and TV shows. We’ll also embark on a quick world tour, introducing major mythologies from Greek to Norse, Egyptian to Chinese, as well as lesser-known but equally intriguing mythologies such as Inuit, Australian Aboriginal, and African.

Not just a tour of mythologies, English Plus adds an extra layer of language learning. We’ll dissect key English words and phrases from the episode, aiding listeners in expanding their vocabulary. So, whether you’re a myth enthusiast, an English learner, or both, this episode is perfect for you! Tune in and let’s explore these stories that make our world so wonderfully rich and diverse.

Audio Episode

Interactive Transcript

Text Transcript

[00:00:00] Hey there, and welcome, dear listeners! I’m Danny, your host, here to escort you on an epic journey into the intriguing, the magical, the mythical! Buckle up because we’re embarking on a brand new series we’re calling “The Mythical Narrative”.

[00:00:19] Oh yes, indeed! We’ll be venturing through the hallowed halls of ancient legends, the misty landscapes of intriguing myths, and the rich tapestry of fantastic tales from all around the world. From the towering Olympus of Greek mythology to the celestial realms of Chinese legends, there’s no stone we’re leaving unturned.

[00:00:40] But hold on, what’s the PLUS in English Plus, you might ask? Well, let me unravel that for you. As we delve into these mesmerizing stories, we’ll be learning together, and not just about mythical creatures and legendary heroes. No, no, my friend! English Plus is here to help you sharpen your language skills while indulging in your love for the fantastic.

[00:01:01] So, whether you’re here to perfect your English pronunciation, learn some new words, or simply dive headfirst into a world of myths and legends, you’re in the right place!

[00:01:11] And hey, if you enjoy our journey together, don’t forget to show some love. Share the podcast with your fellow myth and legend enthusiasts, leave us a review, and drop your thoughts and comments. Your support fuels this mythical ship, and together, we can explore even further and deeper.

[00:01:28] So, are you ready to set sail into the magical realm of “The Mythical Narrative”? Good! Let’s jump right in.

[00:01:40] Alright, adventurers, before we dive too deep, let’s get our bearings straight. What exactly are myths and legends, and what’s the difference between them? Good question, huh?

[00:01:50] So, let’s start with myths. Myths are traditional stories from ancient cultures. They’re like the secret sauce that spices up the culture pot, adding flavor to societies’ understandings of the universe, nature, gods, and heroes.

[00:02:05] Picture this. You’re an ancient Greek citizen, trying to make sense of the sun’s journey across the sky. A scientist might give you a lecture on the solar system’s workings, but a storyteller? Ah, they’ll weave you a tale about Apollo, the sun god, riding his golden chariot across the sky. Now, which one would you remember?

[00:02:26] And what about legends, then? Legends are also traditional stories, but with a twist. They often have a historical root, featuring people who might have actually existed or events that could have taken place. Remember King Arthur and his legendary sword, Excalibur? Yeah, that’s what I’m talking about!

[00:02:44] So, myths and legends, while distinct, share common ground. They both tell fantastic stories and carry vital lessons. They’re like two sides of the same coin, shaping cultures, instilling values, and giving societies a common ground of shared narratives.

[00:03:01] They’re the world’s oldest teachers, reminding us of our shared humanity and inspiring us through timeless wisdom. Whether it’s a god crafting the world from a cosmic egg or a hero overcoming impossible odds, myths and legends serve as our cultural compass, guiding us through the complexities of existence.

[00:03:20] So, ready to step into the world of these grand tales? Great! Let’s venture forth!

[00:03:31] Now, this might make you wonder, why do we, as humans, have this irresistible urge to tell stories? What is it about myths and legends that captivate us so?

[00:03:40] Picture a primal campfire, flickering under a star-lit sky. The tribe huddles close, eager for the elder’s tale. You see, since time immemorial, we’ve been storytellers. We are wired to weave and consume narratives. It’s how we connect, learn, and make sense of the world around us.

[00:03:59] But here’s where it gets really interesting. Regardless of whether you’re from the bustling streets of New York or the tranquil fjords of Norway, storytelling is a universal phenomenon. Different cultures might serve up different myths, but the ingredients, the human emotions and experiences, they are shared.

[00:04:18] And let’s not forget, these narratives, these myths and legends, they are powerful tools. They help societies explain the unexplainable, understand the incomprehensible, and find meaning in the chaos. Why does the sun rise? Why do seasons change? Why are we here? Myths and legends dare to answer these big questions.

[00:04:39] So, my dear listeners, we’re not just indulging in stories for entertainment. We’re tracing the footsteps of our ancestors, exploring the collective imagination of humanity. And the best part? We’re learning a whole lot about ourselves and each other along the way.

[00:04:54] Intrigued? Good! Let’s delve deeper and uncover how these captivating narratives shape our cultures.

[00:05:04] Alright, now that we’re all geared up, let’s dive into how these captivating narratives, these myths, and legends, shape our cultures and societies. Believe it or not, they’re like the invisible threads weaving together the fabric of our cultural identities.

[00:05:20] Picture an intricate tapestry of beliefs, norms, and traditions, each thread colored by a unique myth or legend. Whether it’s the Aboriginal Dreamtime stories influencing art and dance in Australia or the mighty Norse gods inspiring literature and movies like Thor in Hollywood, mythology is everywhere.

[00:05:40] Let’s take a little journey. Imagine celebrating Diwali, the Hindu festival of lights. It’s not just about lighting lamps and eating sweets. It’s about the victory of good over evil, about Lord Rama’s triumphant return as told in the epic Ramayana. Now, isn’t that a richer experience?

[00:05:58] And what about literature? From Homer’s Iliad to J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter, mythological elements are sprinkled throughout our books, offering depth and intrigue. They give writers a treasure trove of symbols, themes, and archetypes to draw upon.

[00:06:13] So, remember, next time you’re at a festival, reading a book, or even watching a movie, look out for those mythological threads. You’ll be amazed at how much they shape and enrich our cultural landscapes.

[00:06:25] Ready to explore more? Well, let’s talk about mythology in our modern world next!

[00:06:35] Now, my fellow adventurers, you might be thinking — “Sure, Danny, all this talk of ancient tales is great, but what’s the relevance of myths and legends in our modern, digital age?” Excellent question!

[00:06:47] Just because we’ve traded parchment for pixels and campfires for Netflix doesn’t mean we’ve left our storytelling roots behind. On the contrary, our myths and legends have simply donned a new cloak, ready to enchant us in this new era.

[00:07:01] Think about it! Haven’t you seen how our modern media is steeped in mythology? Let’s start with cinema, the grand stage of storytelling. The Marvel Cinematic Universe, anyone? It’s a smorgasbord of mythological figures from Thor, the Norse god of thunder, to Thanos, whose name is derived from Thanatos, the personification of death in Greek mythology.

[00:07:22] And let’s not forget books! Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson series, for instance, gives Greek mythology a modern twist, introducing a young demigod navigating his way through a world where ancient gods and monsters are very much alive and kicking.

[00:07:37] Even in video games, we’re witnessing mythology at play. Take the popular game, God of War, where players traverse the realms of Norse mythology. Or Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, a fantastic tour through Ancient Greece, where myths come alive around every corner.

[00:07:53] And it’s not just about entertainment, my friends. These modern adaptations bring myths and legends to a new generation, preserving our cultural heritage. They weave age-old wisdom into new narratives, enabling us to explore timeless themes and question our place in the cosmos, much like our ancestors did around their campfires.

[00:08:13] So, my dear listeners, never underestimate the power of a good story, no matter its form or medium. The wisdom of our ancestors, encapsulated in myths and legends, is alive and kicking, shaping our collective consciousness and culture, one tale at a time.

[00:08:28] Eager to explore some of these mythologies in more detail? Perfect, because that’s where we’re headed next!

[00:08:38] Now, my friends, we’re about to embark on an exhilarating expedition around the globe, uncovering the captivating mythologies of different cultures. From the echoing halls of Olympus to the sacred pyramids of Egypt, we’ve got a lot of ground to cover!

[00:08:52] First stop, Greece! Home to a pantheon of gods and goddesses, monsters, and heroes. Remember Hercules and his twelve labors? Or the cunning Odysseus and his epic journey home? They’re just the tip of the Greek mythology iceberg.

[00:09:06] Then we’ll voyage north to the icy realms of Norse mythology. Get ready to meet the mighty Thor, the mischievous Loki, and venture into the nine realms held within the branches of Yggdrasil, the world tree.

[00:09:19] From there, we’ll set sail for Egypt, where gods like Ra, Osiris, and Isis reign supreme. These deities shaped the Nile, the Sun, and even the afterlife in the hearts of the ancient Egyptians.

[00:09:32] And our journey won’t stop there! We’ll dive into the mystical tales of China, featuring dragons, immortals, and the great Jade Emperor.

[00:09:40] And let’s not forget those equally fascinating but less known mythologies. We’ll wander the frozen landscapes with Inuit spirits, walkabout the Dreamtime with Australian Aboriginal deities, and explore the rich oral traditions of African mythology.

[00:09:55] And the best part? Each of these mythologies will get its own spotlight in our upcoming episodes. From Greek heroes to African trickster gods, we’ll uncover the stories, the characters, and the lessons that have been captivating humanity for centuries.

[00:10:10] So, strap in, fellow adventurers! We’re about to plunge into the rich, the diverse, the mesmerizing world of mythologies. Ready? Great! Let’s go!

[00:10:25] Alright, folks, we’ve journeyed through time and space, and along the way, we’ve encountered a handful of English words and phrases that might have tickled your curiosity. So, let’s take a moment to dissect them, shall we?

[00:10:37] Number one — ‘Mythology’. A collection of myths or stories about a particular god, culture, or subject. It’s like a library of legends, each book filled with fantastical tales.

[00:10:49] Number two — ‘Pantheon’. It’s not just a majestic monument in Rome. In our context, it refers to all the gods of a people or religion. For example, the Greek pantheon includes gods like Zeus, Athena, and Poseidon.

[00:11:02] Number three — ‘Demigod’. This one’s a fun one. It refers to a being with partial or lesser divine status, like Hercules, who was the son of Zeus and a mortal woman.

[00:11:12] Number four — ‘Archetype’. It’s a very typical example of a certain person or thing. In myths, we often see archetypical characters, like the hero, the trickster, or the wise old man.

[00:11:23] Number five — ‘Fjord’. It’s a narrow area of sea between high cliffs. Norway is famous for them. You can picture the Norse gods gazing out over these majestic landscapes.

[00:11:35] Number six — ‘Yggdrasil’. Here’s a tricky one. It’s pronounced ig-dra-sil. It’s the great tree in Norse mythology that connects the nine realms.

[00:11:41] Number seven — ‘Walkabout’. In Australian Aboriginal culture, it’s a journey of spiritual awakening, often represented in their mythological Dreamtime stories.

[00:11:51] Number eight — ‘Oral Tradition’. This is the passing of stories, poems, and sayings from one generation to another by word of mouth. Many African myths come from this rich tradition.

[00:12:02] And finally, Number nine — ‘Immortal’. It means living forever, never dying or decaying. In Chinese mythology, there are many tales of immortals, beings who achieved eternal life.

[00:12:14] So, there you have it! Nine words and phrases to enrich your English and deepen your understanding of our mythical narratives. So, keep these in mind as we journey together through our upcoming episodes.

[00:12:30] Alright, dear listeners, we’re nearing the end of our maiden voyage into the mythical narrative. But, don’t worry! This is just the beginning of a wonderful adventure we’re about to embark on together.

[00:12:41] Today, we’ve dipped our toes into the vast ocean of myths and legends, exploring their origins, their roles in our societies, and their lasting impact on our cultures and traditions. We’ve seen how these ancient tales continue to inspire our modern narratives, and had a whirlwind tour of mythologies from around the world.

[00:12:59] Now, it’s your turn to dive in! There are a plethora of tales waiting for you, full of gods, monsters, heroes, and lessons that have withstood the test of time. So, go ahead, read, explore, and let these timeless narratives enrich your world.

[00:13:16] And make sure to tune in to our next “The Mythical Narrative” episode, where we’ll venture into the fascinating world of creation myths. “How did the world begin?” Every culture has its own unique answer to this question, and we’re going to explore some of the most captivating ones. From the cosmic egg of Chinese mythology to the giant Ymir in Norse myths, we’re in for an exciting journey!

[00:13:38] So, buckle up, fellow myth lovers! We’re just getting started. Here’s to many more adventures in the realm of the mythical narrative.

[00:13:45] And with that, we’ve come to the end of our first episode in “The Mythical Narrative” series. I want to thank each and every one of you for tuning in and journeying with us today.

[00:13:55] If you enjoyed our voyage into the world of myths and legends, please take a moment to hit that subscribe button. It’ll ensure you won’t miss out on any future episodes.

[00:14:03] And hey, if you could share this episode with a friend, or leave a rating and review on your podcast platform of choice, that would be fantastic. Your feedback not only helps us improve, but also helps more myth-lovers like you discover our podcast.

[00:14:18] And remember, this isn’t just about mythology. With the English Plus aspect of our podcast, you’re also improving your language skills along the way. Remember those nine words and phrases we discussed? Try to use them in a conversation or in your writing. You’ll be surprised at how quickly your vocabulary can grow!

[00:14:35] Once again, thank you for being a part of our journey today. I’m Danny, your captain on this mythological journey, signing off. Until next time, keep exploring, keep learning, and most importantly, keep enjoying the myths that make our world so wonderfully rich and diverse.

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<a href="https://englishpluspodcast.com/author/dannyballanowner/" target="_self">Danny Ballan</a>

Danny Ballan

Author

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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