Its said that The Epic of Gilgamesh is the oldest known story in the world. Even though I am a history and mythology nut, I had never read it before this last week. I was somewhat familiar with the myth and characters, but man-o-man, what a great tale. Gilgamesh said “I will stamp my name upon men’s minds forever!” Even though his story was lost for a time, I think he has.
Reading this, it is easy to see the inspiration behind many mythologies, with the most famous probably being the account of the bible’s Great Flood and Noah (who is known in The Epic of Gilgamesh as Utnapishtim). This shouldn’t be a surprise because, from what I remember, the biblical Abraham migrated out of the same near-eastern region. You can even see the origins of many modern myth in the clay tablets (there was much more than just the legend of Gilgamesh recorded in the clay tablets). There are a whole lot of people today who use these myths to explain UFOs, Panspermia, and the Annunaki origins of man. Not to mention Enkidu, who sounds a lot like Bigfoot when we first meet him. Not that I think he literally is or anything, or is even supposed to be, but when he is first introduced Bigfoot was exactly what I thought of…
The Gilgamesh mythology speaks of the roots of civilization, how mankind first left the forest as an animal to later became human (that’s what Enkidu’s tale says to me anyway), how we’ve sought and gained control over nature (represented by the Cedar Forest and the monster Humbaba), and addresses questions about the meaning of life and the meaning of death.
The story behind the story is also pretty amazing. It was originally written down onto baked clay tablets which were lost and buried underneath ancient ruins for over 2,000 years. In 1853 the first fragments of those clay tablets were discovered among the ruins of Nineveh (the ancient capital of Assyria), but the text couldn’t be translated until decades later.
Last fall I saw a documentary on the restoration of a Tibetan Buddhist temple in Mustang, Nepal. It was very interesting to see the effects of time on this all-but abandoned temple, and how the art and architecture were brought back to life.
I like to look at all different kinds of artwork. But typically what my eyes like the most are flat color fields. Throw in some history, gods and artistic talent and you’ve got my attention.
Although I saw this documentary a few months ago, my mind kept wandering back to it and the images. So beautiful.
I’ve been seriously falling behind on my comic book reading this last year or so. Not intentional, I guess I just found myself busy with other things. I did, however, read the first collection of a new series called Manifest Destiny. This series is published by Image Comics, written by Chris Dingess, and illustrated by Matthew Roberts. I don’t know that I’ve read or have seen any other work by these two creators, but I’ll keep my eyes open. Both the story and artwork are solid and very well done.
Manifest Destiny starts off with explorers Lewis & Clark heading out west in 1804. The primary mission is to explore, but they are also sent to investigate all sorts of supernatural occurrences leaked back by the French to the US Government. Their first encounter is with some sort of centaur/Minotaur/buffalo hybrid beasties who begin hunting them down. That’s pretty early, and as the story progresses, other weird stuff starts going on. Oh, and Sacajawea kicks monster ass, which is great to see.
I love stories about the old west, especially when they have a spooky twist.
I have been seeing a lot of crows lately. I learned a long time ago to pay attention to them. Many cultures have seen them as omens of some sort. Its never really clear whether or not the omen is good or bad. But they fly between worlds. Watching. Bringing messages. Memory and Dream. All I know is when I see one I pay attention.
About a year ago I was walking along and I saw this crow flying overhead being chased by three smaller birds. I imagine that crow got caught trying to invade the smaller bird’s nest. Those little birds chased the crow around, herding it to and from different branches, dive bombing and squeaking at it. I must have watched them for about an hour. It seemed that way at least.
A few days ago I saw something similar again. A crow flew over my head, and then about thirty seconds later it flew over me again in the other direction being chased by a single small squeaking bird. I wasn’t able to watch their drama for long though because that little bird chased the crow out of my view pretty quickly. You tell ’em birdie!
I think I have seen at least one or two crows everyday for the last few weeks. I like that. Yesterday I was walking along and there must have been ten or more flying around. Circling around really. A murder of crows and their carrion.