Monday, 15 May 2017
Alternative mythologies can exist in parallel universes, e.g.:
Anderson's Holger Carlsen, trying to find his way back to the Carolingian universe, meets Aztec gods;
an inhabitant of Anderson's goetic universe, where scientifically rationalized magic works, visits Mimir's Well at the roots of Yggdrasil in the Norse mythological universe;
Hell is a full-entropy universe unto itself;
fictional characters who have become myths share a drink and a yarn between universes here.
In Gaiman's The Sandman, all gods begin in one place, the Dreaming, but might then disperse to parallel universes while remaining spiritually linked to their worshippers. When Lucifer closes Hell, other pantheons want it but a Higher Authority intervenes.
Elliot S. Maggin seems to fit all mythologies into a linear narrative, listing Achilles, David, Davy Crockett, John Henry, John Kennedy and Superman. He tells us that Achilles drove back the Trojans "...under a sun that was carried across the sky in Apollo's chariot..." and that David killed Goliath "...in a land where...the Creator of Heaven and Earth spoke through the mouths of men in rags whose eyes burned with the lights of Eternity."
-Elliot S. Maggin, Superman: Miracle Monday (Caveat Corner Books, 2017), Chapter 4, p. 35.
However, Elliot then adds:
"Real or imagined, the heroes lived..." (ibid.)