Modern academics have propounded a plethora of theories about the nature and origin of myths. Historians seek in them clues to prehistory. Anthropologists see them as examples of primitive or prelogical thinking. Comparative religionists see them as attempts to explain the forces of nature, and/or as the origin of religious speculation. Psychologists, recognizing their universal character, see them as archetypal concepts rooted in a “collective unconscious.” Psychiatrists, knowing that people live by myths, and dissatisfied with the available Urmyths, which – in their opinion – mankind has outgrown, advocate the creation of private myths for people to live by. It is pertinent that all these theories presuppose an evolutionary process involving the maturation of mankind, a concept alien to all true mythology, which looks back to a “golden age” when men were heroes and the gods walked on earth.

Rama Coomaraswamy in the preface of Ananda Kentish Coomaraswamy’s The Door In The Sky

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