Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

How did the myths start

  1. Nov 10, 2008 #1

    wolram

    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    I think i can remember the one about the loch ness monster, and the one about Flying saucers, But what about bigfoot, yeti etc?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 10, 2008 #2
    is sasquatsh also a myth or is that just a name for fat people ?
     
  4. Nov 10, 2008 #3

    Ivan Seeking

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    UFO reports go back thousands of years, and there are some very interesting reports from WWII, but Kenneth Arnold's report in 1947 dates the so called modern era. He described the motion as "skipping like saucers on water", and the press ran with it as "flying saucers".

    Native American sasquatch reports are assumed to go back for centuries. But without a written record, there is no way to identify the origin of the myth. The legend is old enough that it was an integral part of some cultures, and still is.
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2008
  5. Nov 10, 2008 #4
    I think a myth can be initiated by one person alone who is telling an extraordinary story or experience with enough convincing to capture the imagination of the listeners who will then pass that story or experience on with their own twists. Over the time the original story may be distorted to the point that an entirely new myth will be born.
     
  6. Nov 10, 2008 #5

    Ivan Seeking

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    There is a big difference between the evolution of a concept through story telling, and claims of direct observation.
     
  7. Nov 10, 2008 #6

    Astronuc

    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    It's all my fault. :biggrin:

    When I first landed on this planet, it was going to be a century tops. Then it turned into centuries, and pretty soon centuries became millenia.

    Maybe now is a good time to leave.


    I wonder if anyone has missed me back home.
     
  8. Nov 10, 2008 #7

    Danger

    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    I'm sure that they have long-range wireless internet and are following your life here on PF.
     
  9. Nov 10, 2008 #8

    Astronuc

    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    Ah - that would explain all the Guests. :biggrin:
     
  10. Nov 10, 2008 #9
    clever people devised myths to protect their less intelligent counterparts.

    bigfoot was probably invented to keep people from going alone to forests. yeti to prevent people from going to snow mountains. lochness from swimming (when it was unsafe). and ufos aren't myths, they're REAL!!!!!!!!
     
  11. Nov 11, 2008 #10

    wolram

    User Avatar
    Gold Member


    Ahhha, now i know what area to direct the hunters to:smile:
     
  12. Nov 11, 2008 #11
    Clever kids invented them to stay out of trouble.

    "BOY! what happened to your new baby seal skin boots ?!"

    "It's not my fault mom. You see there was this huge snowman..."
     
  13. Nov 11, 2008 #12
    Most plausable explanation to me is that it started with human footprints. They melted by sunlight to grow in size. The rest is imagination.
     
  14. Nov 11, 2008 #13

    Chi Meson

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    With Nessie, the myth took off after that English gynecologist/practical joker took that first fuzzy photograph.

    With bigfoot, a guy made huge plywood foot-shapes and ran through the forest with them, then took a fuzzy video of his wife in a fursuit.

    With crop circles, some guys (England again) strapped boards to their feet, drove a stake into the ground, tied a rope to the stake, and walked around. As the rope wound around the stake, they flattened a perfect circle in the field.

    And even though these guys have all come forward to admit to their hoaxes, each of these myths have taken on lives of their own.
     
  15. Nov 11, 2008 #14

    Ivan Seeking

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Who was this?

    Note also that crop circles predate the modern hoaxers; in fact the inventors of modern hoaxing claim that real circles inspired their stunts. Back in the 1940's or so, it was suggested by meteorologists that votices forming along hilltops were responsible, as the circles were often found near the base of a hill. These are generally very simple, donut-shaped circles.

    There are a few modern scientists who maintain that legitimate crop circles have been exposed to microwave radiation - they present evidence in the form of exploded nodes from exposed vegetation that was apparently damaged by rapid heating. Some have suggested that ball lightning, or a similar phenomenon could be involved.
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2008
  16. Nov 11, 2008 #15

    russ_watters

    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    Easy question, simple answer: these are all the same myth. As are dragons, mermaids, unicorns, etc. Someone gets a bad look at something they can't identify, squints, and sees something that isn't really there. They tell someone and that person has the idea in their head when they look and see the same thing.
     
  17. Nov 11, 2008 #16

    Ivan Seeking

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Yes, the Yeti, and a flying saucer, are vitually indistinguisable.
     
  18. Nov 11, 2008 #17

    Ivan Seeking

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

  19. Nov 11, 2008 #18

    Ivan Seeking

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

  20. Nov 11, 2008 #19

    Danger

    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    Jeez, man... you just gave up your true identity! Now we all know that your last name is 'Spider'. It's just a matter of time until we track you to your cave. :devil:
     
  21. Nov 12, 2008 #20

    russ_watters

    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    Don't fret, Ivan, if it's a real flying saucer, it is neither a UFO nor a myth. :wink:
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?



Similar Discussions: How did the myths start
Loading...