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    Greek Myths

    What is the value in learning Greek myths for a Christian? Is this something that will help them in some way, later in the curriculum? Or later in life? Or just an interesting thing to study? I have a hard time teaching my children “there is only one true God” every day of the week and then the one day of the week that we do Greek, teaching about all these other “gods.” I don’t want to send mixed messages.

    #2
    Re: Greek Myths

    We study Greek myths because the references to it pervade our culture. Much of the upper grade literature anywhere (i.e. Shakesspeare) is very difficult without some basic understanding of the Greek myths. I treat them much like fairy tales. They are stories we learn something from, but contain fantastical elements that are not true.
    Jennifer

    2018-2019
    R- DS, 10, 4NU

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      #3
      Re: Greek Myths

      Originally posted by Jlstan View Post
      What is the value in learning Greek myths for a Christian? Is this something that will help them in some way, later in the curriculum? Or later in life? Or just an interesting thing to study? I have a hard time teaching my children “there is only one true God” every day of the week and then the one day of the week that we do Greek, teaching about all these other “gods.” I don’t want to send mixed messages.
      Good morning,

      This is a very good question and you are not the first to ask it! Two past threads in particular may already have all or part of an answer for you: Child very bothered by learning Greek Myths - does NOT want to learn about false gods and Advice on Mythology and Pep Talk on Latin Please! (particularly post #3). Of course, if you check both and still have questions, please let us know!

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        #4
        Re: Greek Myths

        Originally posted by Jlstan View Post
        What is the value in learning Greek myths for a Christian? Is this something that will help them in some way, later in the curriculum? Or later in life? Or just an interesting thing to study? I have a hard time teaching my children “there is only one true God” every day of the week and then the one day of the week that we do Greek, teaching about all these other “gods.” I don’t want to send mixed messages.
        Yes! This is a great and oft asked question. I teach Greek Myths in our cottage school and I often will simply quip, "This is mythology!" or "That's mythology!" when they ask about historical sequencing, or why there were no repercussions to immoral actions, or why Zeus or Poseidon is getting another wife. This is mythology, not another "religion" or "faith" as we would think about it today. Just as a non-Christian needs to know the Christian scriptures/Hebrew history to receive a full education and be prepared for most of what they'll read in high school, so also a Christian needs to know the myths and history of the Greeks and Romans. High school reading is replete with mythological references. Milton, for example, is writing a religious story, but fills it to the brim with mythological characters and (back)story lines. Paradise Lost requires more knowledge of Greek mythology to be understand than it does even of scripture!

        If you trace out Greek Myths though Famous Men of Greece through Book of the Ancient Greeks/Iliad/Odyssey through Greek Tragedies and finally through Greek philosophy you see that this is the first of many studies which focus on the beliefs of the peoples of Greece. Even though I only teach Greek Myths, I can follow most, if not all, of the story line of Aeschylus' Oresteian Trilogy. An older student starting without those years of background preparation is stuck in the footnotes trying to figure out what the problem is, where it started, and who all these cruel relatives are. A well prepared student opens page 1 and knows right where they are in the story, who is talking and why, what has just happened, and what is about to transpire.

        If nothing else, I think it helps you differentiate between false and true gods. Trust me, you aren't going to be tempted to worship any of these deities! Children too are sensitive to the gods meddling in the lives of mortals to accomplish their own ends or side with their favorite of the hour. They know it when they see it--and they cry, "Not fair!" To me, it's a completely different study than anything religious.

        Hope this helps!

        ETA: If you have not already read the introduction to the Teacher Manual, there is a great one page note from Cheryl Lowe on just this topic.
        Festina lentē,
        Jessica P

        '22-'23 • 13th year HSing • 11th year MP
        DS Hillsdale College freshman
        DD 11th • HLN & Latin online
        DD 8th • HLN & Home
        DS 5th • HLN & Home
        Me • Memoria College, MPOA Fourth Form for Adults

        Teaching Third Form Latin and co-directing @
        Highlands Latin Nashville Cottage School, est. 2016

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