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Journeys of the Underworld Throughout time Myths have been used through civilizations in order to explain the unexplainable Different cultures describe their difficulties and what their gods did in order to solve these Because most of the disasters or difficulties were tied together or somehow the same the myths tend to overlap More important than the similarities are the differences among the cultures because all of them beautifully tell their own side of the story One of the most apparent parallels in mythology are the stories of Ishitar Babylonian and Persephone Greek Ishitar portrays one of the agricultural myths as to why there are seasons specifically winter She goes into the underworld to seek out her lover Her evil sister the goddess of the underworld makes Ishitar follow through with many different deeds to get passed the gates of the underworld After being stripped naked she pleads to the gods for help While she had been in the underworld all activity had stopped in the world above her They obliged by sending a distraction for her sister and Ishitar found her way to the world above ground where she found that activity began again The halt of activity symbolizes winter Much like the story of Ishitar is that of Persephone and Demeter Persephone is taken into the underworld by Hermes where she is forced to stay until the gods bade her to the world above so her mother would stop grieving and make the harvests grow again Before Persephone leaves Hermes makes her eat a pomegranate seed meaning that she would have to return to the underworld Knowing of this Demeter and Hermes split their time with Persephone When she was in the above world harvests would flourish yet when she was in the underworld crops would stop growing and the above world would grow cold thus the story of the seasons Another type of myth is that told of Marwe
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