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There are well over a dozen apparently separate tribes or races of superhuman beings known to humanity who claim to be gods, none of whom is God, the religious concept of the unique creator force in the universe. Gods appear to be a class of superhuman beings unto themselves. Because their origins and true natures are still shrouded in myth and controversy the gods remain difficult entities to readily define.

There are certain commonalities among all known gods, an examination of which may shed more light on their special nature. All gods are or were physical beings, and appear to be composed of something analogous to flesh, bone, and tissue, except that it is more durable, denser, stronger, and more resistant to injury than human flesh, bone, and tissue. Certain gods now exist in an immaterial state or can assume an immaterial state at will, but even these beings were physical in origin.

No god exists alone, but is part of a tribe (called "pantheon") which includes numerous other gods possessing humanlike familial relationships with one another. A pantheon includes a small number of gods known to the mythology of modern day Earth and a large number who are not. Each pantheon is associated with a certain tribe of human beings who once worshipped them. Often times a pantheon of gods is known by the name of the tribe of human beings who worshipped them (for instance, the Greek gods, Celtic gods, or Aztec gods). Each pantheon now exists on its own separate extra dimensional world and with certain rare exceptions (such as Hercules and Thor), take very little active part in the affairs of present day humanity. It is very probable that each pantheon of gods once lived on Earth, probably in close proximity with the human tribe who worshipped them. Without such direct contact, it is difficult to account for the strong connections between a given tribe of men and its corresponding tribe of gods, or for mankind's detailed accounts of the gods' activities (which later passed into myth).

Certain individual gods within each pantheon became associated with a particular natural phenomenon or much-valued skill. For instance, Thor is the Norse god of thunder, Artemis is the Greek goddess of hunting, and Horus is the Egyptian god of the sun. It may be happenstance that some skill or aspect of a god's nature was singled out for worship by the associated human tribe, but each human tribe has a god to correspond to all of the forces and attributes that are culturally significant to it. Mankind's worship of the gods does not appear to affect a given god's (or pantheon's) existence or store of superhuman energy. (This contrasts with demonic beings such as Dormammu, who will often drain portions of the life forces of their worshippers to increase their own power). If this were the case, a god such as Thor who has very few active worshippers today could not be as powerful as he is if he were dependent on belief in him to sustain his might. The relationship between tribes of men and tribes of gods is still a mystery.

All pantheons of gods have their own myths of creation (which were once adopted by their human worshipers), assigning members of their pantheon with key positions in the creation of all that is. Obviously, not all of these origin tales can be simultaneously literally true, and current scientific knowledge tends to discredit all of them. What is known about the origins of the gods is that they are not the first beings of their type to appear on Earth. There is substantial evidence that prior to mankind's existence, and perhaps the existence of any other relatively complex organic life on Earth, beings called the Elder Gods appeared on Earth. These Elder Gods are believed to have somehow coalesced out of the Earth's biosphere (the fertile life-supporting environment) and taken physical form by intermingling with the substance of the Earth itself. The first such being believed to attain consciousness in this way is called the Demiurge, and is the prime creative force of its kind. According to certain accounts, the Demiurge congealed into consciousness even as the conditions on Earth became right for life and then sensing the need for diversity, split up into countless fertile fragments, each of which spawned a new organism. These Elder Gods, the spawn of the Demiurge, were generally an imperfect class of mostly nonhumanoid beings, who degenerated into life-preying demons with the passing eons. The Elder God known as Gaea is believed to have escaped that fate by attaining a more advanced form and entrenching herself in the crust of the Earth itself. She thus became one of the few surviving Elder Gods and was known as Mother Nature. Gaea claims to have mated with a reincarnation of the Demiurge, at the peak of the Elder Gods' degeneracy, to create a newer, more perfect race of gods.

Their offspring Atum was conceived to slay the degenerate gods of the old generation and open the way for new gods on Earth. If Atum is indeed the first of the new gods and Gaea's account of the Elder Gods is essentially true, then Atum is the primal parent of all the later pantheons of gods known to man. After slaying virtually all of his predecessors end cleansing earth of their evil, Atum split up into countless fertile fragments, just as the Demiurge allegedly had done eons previously, thus spawning the modern races of gods. (Atum is the name that the Egyptians called the primal Earth god. He may have been called other names by other pantheons). If Atum did spawn all of the pantheons known to man, than the individual gods of those pantheons are also related even as all the families of man are related. (Indeed, the Egyptians viewed the Asgardian god Odin as a reincarnation of Atum.) Evidence of common ancestry among all the gods of earth is that there has been intermating between pantheons, particularly those whose worshippers have lived in close proximity to one another (such as the Romans and the Celtics). There is also evidence that what is now known as one tribe or pantheon is made up of more than one smaller tribe who merged together at one point. (For instance, the Aesir and the Vanir merged to become the Asgardians). Although this theory of the origin of the gods cannot be fully verified, it is as yet the most integrated hypothesis proposed to account for the many facets of the gods on Earth.

It would appear that none of the pantheons worshipped by the peoples of Earth is an outright fabrication on the part of their worshippers. Every pantheon worshipped on earth appears to have been (and in most cases still is) literally real. Among the many pantheons of gods known to exist are those worshipped by the Incas, Aztecs, Mayans, Persians, Japanese, Africans, Celtics, Native Americans, Chinese, Indians, Polynesians, Graeco-Romans, and the Norsemen. The chieftains or "sky-fathers" of these various tribes are known to have met only once at a convocation initiated by Odin of the Asgardians and Zeus of the Olympians, approximately 1000 years ago to address the problem of Celestial visitation on Earth (see Celestials). It has been conjectured that it was the alien Celestials who dispatched at least some of the realms of the gods into other dimensions. Another theory is that the gods themselves elected to move their homes to other dimensions where they would be safer. Still another is that the godly realms naturally drifted into other dimensions due to a shift in Earth's cosmic axis. (Virtually all the known godly realms have the cosmic axis manifested within it in some way.)

Due to the many unknown aspects of their origin and nature, the gods remain the most mysterious class of beings who exist in the known multiverse.

It should be noted that there are various beings who claim to be gods or were mistaken for them in the past, but are not truly gods. Among them are Eternals (Zuras was mistaken for Zeus), aliens, and mutants.

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