How Are Natural Phenomena Explained in Mythology?

Natural phenomena have long been given mythological explanations, such as the attribution of lightning to the Greek god, Zeus, and the attribution of earthquakes and volcanoes, by a range of cultures, to celestial in-fighting. The word "volcano" itself originated with the Roman god of fire, Vulcan, who was believed to shoot lava up from the earth.

The Norse description of Ragnarok, or the apocalypse, is also thought to be a mythological explanation of volcanic eruption. It begins with the shaking of the tree of life, Yggdrasil, and concludes with the fire giant, Surt, who pulls the sun from the sky with his swords of fire.

Lightning also exists in Norse mythology as bolts hurled by Thor.