Evelyn Wolfson's American Indian Mythology PDF

By Evelyn Wolfson

Lengthy prior to they have been written down, American Indian myths have been saved alive via a robust oral culture. have you questioned how the area was once made? MYTHOLOGY OF the yank INDIANS discusses this secret, in addition to different myths and legends from diversified tradition components all through North the US. each one bankruptcy is by way of a question and solution part which covers characters, issues, and emblems. knowledgeable statement part complements the myths with critiques by way of famous students. This ebook is built from AMERICAN INDIAN MYTHOLOGY to permit republication of the unique textual content into publication, paperback, and exchange versions.

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Q: How was the gift of music different from the gifts of fire, food, and weapons? A: The gift of music spoke to a person’s soul and emotional well-being. Music went beyond the basic needs for survival, such as food, fire, and shelter. It uplifted the people’s spirit and encouraged them to keep a “literary” history or oral tradition. 40 EXPERT COMMENTARY The tortoise and yarrow have symbolic meaning in the story. In his work on cyclic world myths, professor Robert Shanmu Chen of the University of British Columbia writes: Divination of the Pa Kua [eight-sided octagon] was accomplished through the use of the tortoise-shell and the arrangement of stalks of milfoil [also known as yarrow].

But Fushi knew better. He realized that finding food, making tools, raising animals, keeping records, and making choices were not enough. He worried that the people would become boastful and selfish. Fushi wanted them to stay humble and learn from their past, to remember their successes and failures by telling stories. To help the storytellers, and to touch their hearts, he gave them his last gift, the gift of music. Fushi taught the people how to make a Chinese lute, a pípa. Its melodic notes were a pleasure to hear, and its beautiful curves were a joy to behold.

Using this sacred mixture, she began bit by bit to mend the hole in the sky. All the while, she cursed at the carelessness of the gods who had caused this devastation. Next, Nuwa scooped up miles and miles of river rushes and stuffed up every burning crack she could find. As their ashes settled in the crevices, the earth subsided. Nuwa ripped up more river rushes, willows, and branches to dam the bursting rivers. The waters, too, slowed down to a rumble and then flowed smoothly and swiftly to the sea.

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