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Roman satirist Lucian of Somosata wrote of philosophers whose souls escaped from the Underworld. Names such as Plato, Socrates, even the founders of Stoicism which was popular in the second-century Roman Empire. They were angry with Lucian, who had placed himself as a character in this particular story. He had, in their eyes, insulted them and Philosophy ...


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Plato’s Republic includes the myth of Er, son of Armenius, in which Er avoids drinking the water of Lethe and so escapes from the underworld: All the souls […] marched on in a scorching heat to the plain of Forgetfulness [Lethe], which was a barren waste destitute of trees and verdure; and then towards evening they encamped by the river of Unmindfulness [...


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I doubt that this has anything to do with Mediterranean cultures specifically. The myth of Izanagi/Izanami in Japanese Shinto is straightforwardly identical to the myth of Orpheus (only that the protagonists are gods in the Japanese myth). Also Greek myths and other myths in the region could have been influenced by other previous non-Mediterranean cultures. ...


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Well, the Egyptian Book of the Dead is basically a manual for a deceased person to navigate the perils of the underworld to get to a place called "Double Ma'at" where the heart is weighed. But the journey to this place is full of monsters and demons. The deceased has to navigate this all by him/her self, with just the scrolls to guide. I guess that ...


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