The Legend Of Pandora’s Box
The background to the story of Pandora’s Box is the Titan Prometheus’ resistance to the law and the commands of the King of the Gods, Zeus. In Greek mythology Prometheus, whose name means forethought, was one of the Titans. He was a culture hero and a trickster figure who is credited with the creation of man from clay. He defied the Gods and brought them the gift of fire to the Earth, so that progress and civilisation became possible. Prometheus was known for his intelligence and as a champion of humankind. After either having got away with or having paid the price for one of his misdeeds, Prometheus kept going back for more. Zeus, however, was very crafty in the way of handing out punishments to those who refused to obey him.
As Prometheus’ penalty Zeus gave him Pandora, the first woman. She was a very different creature from man. Having been created in the forge of Hephaestus, she was as beautiful as a Goddess and very beguiling, thanks to traits bestowed upon her by Athene and Zeus himself. Athene was the Greek Goddess of wisdom, courage, inspiration, civilisation, law and justice, as well as warfare, mathematics, strength, strategy, the arts, crafts and skills. Zeus presented Pandora as a bride to Prometheus’ brother Epimetheus, who was only capable of afterthought. Prometheus had the gift of thinking ahead and expected retribution from Zeus because of his audacity with the fire, so he warned his brother against accepting any presents from their king.
When Zeus handed Pandora over to Epimetheus, she brought with her a box that carried a label with a warning that the box should never be opened by anyone. Epimetheus was so dazzled by his bride that he forgot his brother’s advice. He thought they were supposed to hold the gift his bride brought with her in safe-keeping for Zeus. Blissfully unaware of what kind of a present it held in reality, Epimetheus insisted that his wife followed the instructions on the box.
But then one day he had to leave Pandora on her own for a few hours. She had been gifted with curiosity as much as with all the other attributes her Divine parents themselves had. For Pandora the box was a present and therefore not merely something to be kept in trust, without ever looking at it. What business did Zeus have to tell her not to open it? Possibly she had listened to her brother-in-law’s tales of tricking the king of the Gods or maybe she saw nothing to fear in the box. What if she just had a quick peak?
No sooner said than done! Making sure that no-one was watching, Pandora opened the box just one tiny crack. As she did so, unpleasant ghostly forms started to gush forth from the opening. Without being aware of what she was doing, Pandora thus unleashed all the ills that subsequently had to be experienced and endured by our race, so that we should learn from them and grow in wisdom and understanding of the true purpose that lies behind our existence on the Earth plane.
In the end, Pandora’s gift with a difference would teach each one of us to discriminate and differentiate between good and evil, darkness and light. The sacred fire of the Gods hidden in her gift would eventually show us that what Prometheus brought us was merely showing how to make fire and how to use it wisely on the Earth plane. Precious though this was, Pandora was given something much more valuable. How else could it have been when it had its origin in the superior intelligence of her father, the King of the Gods, and the wisdom and love of his feminine counterpart, the Goddess Athene?
And so it came about that from Pandora’s appearance onwards, human beings were no longer allowed to lounge around all day. They now had to work very hard for their living and from time to time some of them succumbed to many different kinds of ailments, too. When Pandora thought that just about every one of the unpleasant things must surely have left the box, at its very bottom she discovered one more item. On closer inspection, lo and behold!, she found that it was not something evil, but that she had also unleashed onto our world the most precious gift of all and that was hope.
Built into all individual and the collective soul of our world with this gift was the instinctive/intuitive knowledge that things would always improve and better times would be just round the next corner, that progress was constantly being made by us and we were forever moving onwards and upwards on the evolutionary spiral of life.
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