is really the evolution of thought processes among tribal groupings throughout the world. Anything (e.g. lightening) that could not be rationally explained was irrationally explained by attributing it (lightening) to a god (Thor). There was a different lightening god (in name only) for different tribal groupings. Norse Thor was Greek Zeus was Roman Jupiter was Semitic YHVH or Allat - all a local thunder (or storm) god.
Now you might suspect that there was a different god for each irrationally explained phenomena. And you would be correct. In the Indian tradition, there are 3,003 gods. In Shinto, who even tries to keep count?
But there are certain symbols (e.g. the moon) and patterns (e.g. a day of judgment) that help cultural anthropologists deconstruct regional mythology.
Well, even among Buddhists, if you die with a heavy heart, you thereafter suffer.