Clay vs tree


New Member
Once I read a book I found this "while he was experimenting one day with his clay and water. Like a potter, he kneaded the heart and built up his creation. He fired these clay models with life and let the newly made men and women go forth their own".
It is said that Prometheus created human using clay, but in Icelandic myth, the creation of humans happened when three sons of Borr having a walk in a beach then they had trees and blew lives in those trees, then humans there were. Why do Greek chose clay and why Icelandic chose trees?


Active Member
I'm only making an educated guess here, but in Iceland there are no trees. Floating wood that made it to shore was therefore very
valuable and people fought over it. I believe that the gods saw the wood of two different trees and knowing the value, turned them into
the first humans.
I believe the Greeks made more use of ceramics than the Northerners, so clay was probably a good choice.
If humans can make many wonders with clay, a god can make humans.
The idea of a god using clay to make humans is also used in Egyptian mythology.
At the temple of Esna there is an image of the ram-headed Khunem god crafting a little human on a potter's wheel.

Rhonda Tharp

Active Member
Middle Eastern myths had Adamah making humans out of clay, and Ptah in Egypt also made humans on the potters' wheel. In China, Nuwa made the first humans out of clay. But the farther north you go in Europe, the Norse and the Celts placed a heavy emphasis on trees (King Arthur was supposedly buried in an oak). Irish myth said the first humans came from oak acorns. Donn and Danu were separated, then Donn turned into an oak. Finn MacCumhail was raised in a tree trunk. Irish and Welsh caste systems were set up by trees, shrubs and herbs. I am not an expert in Icelandic history, but wasn't the land explored and settled by Norse or Vikings? That's probably how the idea of the importance of trees spread. Jmho...


New Member
Very logical answers you guys have. Somehow it shows that many myths and religions agreed that humans were created from clay. In Islam, and maybe other religions too clay is believed to be the substance that creates us. Does God intentionally use clay, or the people who create God "arrange" him to do so. I wonder..


Active Member
Islam, Judaism, and Christianity accept the Torah (among other writings) as the Word of God. The Torah presents the clay theory: "And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground..." (Gen. 2:7 KJV)