Bahá’í

RE refers to Marie of Romania (3.06). She was a follower of the Baha’i faith and believed that it was the answer for uniting mankind in religious harmony.  RE’s plans to unite all supes echoes her desire. (For more on Marie of Romania, see Not as Deep as a Well in the poetry section.)

Buddhism

Dhammapada

Dharmacakra Pravartana Sūtra

This is the Buddha‘s first discourse after he reached Enlightenment in which he identifies the Four Noble Truths.

  1. Suffering (dukkha) involves birth, aging, illness, death, being with what is displeasing, being separated from what is pleasing, not getting what one wants, and “in brief” the fiveaggregates-of-clinging (pancupādānakkhandhā).
  2. Suffering’s origin (dukkhasamudayo) is craving (tanhā) for sensual pleasures, existence and extermination.
  3. Suffering’s end (dukkhanirodho) comes from the relinquishment of and freedom from this craving.
  4. The path leading to suffering’s end is the aforementioned Noble Eightfold Path.

Lafayette refers to the 4 Noble Truths when he tells Tara that life is suffering.

Christianity

Holy Bible (SSN, TB)

The Compton family Bible, Lettie Mae’s Bible

Psalms

Lettie Mae prays various psalms (TB)

Temptation of Eve and Expulsion from Paradise (SSN, TB)

The essay ‘Sookie’s Sojourn‘ explains the Christian allegory in the series.

Woman Washes the Feet of Jesus (SSN, TB)

Luke 7:36-48

Sarah Newlin recounts this story to Jason as she helps him with his bath. Sookie washes Eric’s feet in DTTW.

Greek Mythology

Apollo and Artemis (TB)

Apollo and Artemis were the twins of the nymph Io and Zeus. The jealous Hera attempted to prevent their birth, as she does in many myths with the birth of Zeus’s bastard children. (See the myths of Callisto and Hermes.) Bill has a bust of Hera in his office making him her follower and setting him up against Eric (follower of Artemis), Sam (associated with Apollo), and RE (associated with Hermes).

Apollo and Daphne (TB)

Aurora and Tithonus (TB)

The Caledonian Boar (TB)

Cassandra and Ajax (TB)

TB identifies Tara and Franklin Mott with Cassandra and Ajax. See Agamemnon in Drama.

Cassanandra was Gifted and Cursed by Apollo (TB)

See Agamemnon in Drama

Cupid and Psyche (SSN, TB)

Dionysus

See Protogonos and Zagreus

Dionysus and Ariadne (TB)

Hermes and Apollo (TB)

RE has a bust of Hermes prominently displayed in his living room. This associated him with that god just as Bill’s bust of Hera and Eric’s statuette of Artemis link them with goddesses. In the earliest myths he was clever, tricky, a thief, and, with a wand that could awaken people or put them to sleep, the original sandman. This is why RE touches Bill’s forehead with this index finger in 3.03 and tells him to ‘sleep on’ their conversation. Hermes was a thief who stole his brother’s herd of cattle. This could relate to RE stealing Ulfric’s pack of wolves. Jealous Hera (Bill) hates him as one of Zeus’s illegitimate children and tried to prevent him from being born.

King Tereus (TB)

See The Birds in Drama

Lycoan and Callisto (SSN, TB)

CH made few explicit references to this myth (other than using the name Callisto), but it seems to underlie some of the elements she introduced into the series. In any case, TB is  use of this myth. Lycoan was a king who Zeus turned into a ravenous wolf to match his exterior to his violent and hate filled interior. Callisto was his daughter, a follower of Artemis who was raped by Zeus and gave birth to a son. The jealous Hera transformed into a bear. Many years later, Zeus saved her from being hunted by her own sun by glorifying her in the stars and she became the constellation Ursa Major.

TB identifies Eric as a follower of Artemis, like Callisto. He has a bust of her in his office and wears a bear claw around his neck. Foreshadowing also identifies Eric as a berserker in his human life. They wore bear skins and their name is derived from the animal. Also the name ‘Pamela’ means honey, a favorite of bears. (We know TB is making use of Pamela’s name because Lafayette called her honey comb.) See the myth of the birth of Apollo and Artemis for how Bill fits into this.

Pasiphae and the Bull (TB)

Protogonos (TB)

Orphic god, who was the first incarnated being in the world. He was created by Night and Darkness and hatched from the world egg. He was reincarnated as Zagreus and later as Dionysus.

Pyramus and Thisbe (TB)

Jessica, Shylock’s Daughter

Zagreus

Son of Zeus and Persephone who was torn to pieces by the Titans on Hera’s orders and later reincarnated in Semele’s womb as Dionysus. (See Protogonos)

Gnostic

Sophia, the goddess of wisdom (TB)

Sophie Ann is probably in part based on this myth in which the Snake in the Garden of Eden who tempted Eve is the hero.

Islam

Qur’an

King Solomon and the Hoopoe Advisor

Norse Mythology

Icelandic Sagas (SSN, TB)

Eric Bloodaxe and his father Harold Fairhair

Canaanite Mythology (TB)

Mot is the Canaaniteg god of death

The True Blood promo invitations to an Alternative Realty Game were written in the Canaanite language, Ugaritic.