A Cherokee Creation Story

cherokee creation

There is a story of creation the Cherokee People one that speaks of a female sun as well as what is called an Earth Diver. It begins at a place beyond memory, when the world was covered with water. When all life, all that was Sacred lived in Galunlati or what is known as the vault in the sky beyond the rainbow. A place that was so crowded the creatures could barely move around.

The creatures decided to seek a solution to this discomfort and it was decided that they would send the Water Beetle down to the watery earth below. The Water beetle bravely dove down into the waters and soon surfaced bringing with him a gob of mud that he began slowly to spread out in order to create a surface. This surface soon became the earth-island. Soon after Creator attached the sky using four pieces of rawhide tied to the four sacred mountains that lie in the Four Sacred Directions. The Beetle smiled at Creator.

Yet still the earth was muddy and too soft for the creatures to live upon. So it was then decided that Buzzard would be sent down to locate a dry spot in which the creatures could dwell. Finally he came upon a place where the mud was drying out. The Buzzard then took his great wings and used its wide wingspan to flap creating mountains and valleys. The Buzzard smiled up at Creator.

When the land was ready the other creatures began to migrate down from beyond the rainbow. As they arrived they were saddened to find that their new home was dark with no light. So they decided to pull Sister Sun down from the vault of the sky showing her the path she should follow each day. She agreed and smiled at them and Creator.

Soon Creator sent the plants down to live among the animals and sustain them, asking that the plants and the animals all stay awake for seven days. Most of the creatures fell asleep before the time was up, but Owl stayed awake and was given the power of night vision.

Some of the plants also managed to stay awake the entire time and they, the cedar, pine, holly, spruce and a few others were then permitted to keep their hair throughout the year. The other plants were told they would have to shed their leaves each year when the cold began and grow them again when the weather began to warm up, testimony to their sleep and broken promise to the Creator.

Creator then decided to form a man and a woman. The man proceeded to press a fish against the woman, which made her grow large and eventually give birth to a child. Every seven days she gave birth to another child, until the Creator decided to place a cycle on her so that she could have a new child only once a year. This is how we, the Cherokee People came to be.

Mitakuye O`yasin
~ bear Medicinewalker

sacred Hoop project 2015

“Earth Dance” by Chris Ferree available at http://chrisferree.com/