It is striking how ancient myths link up with modern-day thought, concerns and religious ideas. For the ancient Greeks, Pandora represented the first woman, part of a creationist myth, comparable to Eve in the creation myth of Abrahamic religions.
I like the artist Dante Rossetti’s interpretation of Pandora in the feature here, as it highlights the fact that she was not a real woman, but an archetype or metaphor representing a paradoxical idea.
According to the myth, Pandora was given a box, or more correctly, a jar by Zeus, who commanded her not to open it. When she did so in secret, out flew all the ‘evils’ of the world, leaving only ‘hope’ in the bottom of the jar. This is a simplified version of the parable, as I’m interested mainly in its relationship with human thought–and with wanting to know–and its implications for humankind. I see Pandora as a symbol of duality: male/female; desire to know/need to love; heaven/earth; good/evil; spirit/flesh and life/death.