In the beginning there was no …

December 7, 2018 General Studies

In the beginning there was no land, only a great ocean that stretched out infinitely. Above this great ocean was a Sky-World occupied by Gods who were like the Iroquois people. At the center of the universe, stood a Great Tree. Its massive roots spread out over the floor of the Sky-World. The tree was sacred, and was not to be marred by any of the dwellers of the Sky-World.In the Sky-World was a man who aimed to please his pregnant wife. His wife told him that she wanted some bark from the roots of the Great Tree. Though the husband knew it was wrong, he dug up the roots of the tree for his wife. In doing so, he broke a hole in the floor of the Sky-World, and was shocked to find empty space underneath. He was terrified and told his wife what he did. The wife looked into the hole and saw the ocean below. As she bent over to get a closer look, the curious wife fell through the hole in the Sky-World. Perhaps she slipped, or perhaps her husband pushed her. No one knows exactly how it happened. As a last attempt to save herself, she desperately grabbed at the roots of the tree, but bits of the roots ended up in her hands as she fell toward the great ocean below.The birds of the sea joined together to save the woman and they broke her fall. The great sea turtle floated in the ocean and received the woman on his back without harm. The frightened woman looked around and all she could see was water and sky. She felt helpless, but the animals were determined to save her. She told them that if they could find some soil, she could plant the roots from the Great Tree that were still tangled in her hands.The animals thought that perhaps there was dirt at the depths of the ocean, but they had never tried to reach the bottom before. One by one they tried to swim down, but their attempts were futile. Finally, the muskrat disappeared into the cold depth of the ocean. After a lengthy amount of time, he drifted to the surface with a tiny speck of earth in his hand. He appeared to be dead, but the animals prayed and chanted, and finally he stirred. The Earth-Diver was successful in bringing forth the soil to make the earth grow.The woman placed the dirt on Turtle’s back and performed a ritual to create the earth. She walked around the dirt in the direction of the sun until the earth grew large enough. Then she planted the roots from the Great Tree and continued her ritual to keep the earth growing. Like the sun she kept moving around the earth, in the same direction the people still do in dance rituals today.The woman created a home for herself on this new earth and soon her daughter was born. The woman and her daughter lived off of the plants and roots and continued to walk the path of the sun to keep the earth growing. The girl grew up on this earth, never knowing about the Sky-World above. Never seeing another being like herself.


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