The universe, as recorded in myth, generally consists of the sky and earth and often an underworld. All these peoples are keenly aware of the objects that populate the sky, and of their motions. As we stand on this earth and look at our world, we still see the same things the ancients did. 

What do we actually see when we look at the world out there?  
We see ourselves standing in the center of our universe. The earth we see appears as a great circle, a disc and we are standing in its center.  It is bounded on its edge by the horizon where the earth meets the sky. Vaulting above the earth is the hemispherical dome of the sky. The point directly above our heads in the center of the celestial dome is the zenith. In many cultures, this hemisphere is actually perceived as a full sphere that continues below the Earth as the underworld. In the mythic world, the earth is where people and other living things reside, and the sky is the abode of the gods, spirits, and heroes.

The sky is populated with objects, the sun, the moon, the planets and the stars, and the occasional comet and meteor. By far, most of the objects that populate the sky are fixed stars, meaning they stay in the same location relative to each other. These fixed stars come in patterns, and the two fundamental patterns we see are constellations (apparent groupings of stars which change from culture to culture, commonly thought of as animals (think of the Zodiac) and the Milky Way, a great band or river of stars that crosses the celestial sphere.  

Other objects can move relative to the fixed stars. Logically, because they have this greater freedom of motion, they are thought of being more powerful, and are seen as gods in most mythic systems. They include the two largest celestial objects, the sun and the moon, as well as five "stars" which move along the same path as the sun and the moon. They are the five wandering stars (in Greek wanderer is planetos, hence the name planet) Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn, a total of seven objects. From this we get the seven days of the week and the magical importance of the number seven.  

One additional fact that is quite clear to the ancients, or to anyone that looks at the sky for any length of time, is that not only do individual objects move against the background of the celestial sphere, but the entire celestial sphere moves. Thus the motions that we see fall into two categories:  
1. --common apparent motions that affect all the objects in the sky (the entire celestial sphere) and really caused by the motions of the earth.  In addition to the common apparent motions affecting the entire sphere, there are   
2. --actual motions,  the proper (=individual=unique to these objects) motions of the moon and the planets, comets and asteroids, actual motions unique to these celestial bodies.