Tuesday, August 17, 2004

I am Platypus, Hear me Roar?


Okay, so I figured I'd blog today since I haven't in a week. Nothing is new and everything is boring. I'm up to my ass in Cosmology (think Carl Segan not Estee Lauder) and Mythology research right now and am working on Chapter 2 of my book (the fact that I ever started is brilliant in it's own right). I even felt the need to hop into an early morning Yoga class today. So while I've been studying comic eggs, big bangs, trees of life, goddess mothers, and the world turtle... there was an interesting find in Jerusalem that, since I'm writing a book on religion, I felt the need to update everyone on. Saddly, cultural and scientific news gets lots behind sound bites. Yes we can clone people now, and there is physical proof of John the Baptist.... but hot damn, Nicky Hilton just got married that's gonna be our lead off! Okay, rant over. Yes, they found a cave they believed to belong to John the Baptist. And yes, that's BIG news.

On the Mythology front, most all of the myths about the "beginning" are very similar. The only really different take is that of the Babylonians The Enuma Elish, the misogynistic tale that Genesis was adapted from.

Anyway, I thought I'd share what I think to be the most pleasant of all the myth's... that of the Native Australians (The aborigines).


Of Dreamtime


When the earth was new-born, it was plain and without any features or life. Waking time and sleeping time were the same. There were only hollows on the surface of the Earth which, one day, would become waterholes. Around the waterholes were the ingredients of life.
Underneath the crust of the earth were the stars and the sky, the sun and the moon, as well as all the forms of life, all sleeping. The tiniest details of life were present yet dormant: the head feathers of a cockatoo, the thump of a kangaroo's tail, the gleam of an insect's wing.

A time came when time itself split apart, and sleeping time separated from waking time. This moment was called the Dreamtime. At this moment everything started to burst into life.
As the Sun Mother awoke, she opened her eyes a warm ray of light spread out towards the sleeping earth.

The Father of All Spirits said to the Sun Mother, "Mother, I have work for you. Go down to the Earth and awake the sleeping spirits. Give them forms."

The Sun Mother glided down to Earth, which was bare at the time and began to walk in all directions and everywhere she walked plants grew. After returning to the field where she had begun her work the Mother rested, well pleased with herself. The Father of All Spirits came and saw her work, but instructed her to go into the caves and wake spirits. This time she ventured into the dark caves on the mountainsides. The bright light that radiated from her awoke the spirits and after she left insects of all kinds flew out of the caves. The Sun Mother sat down and watched the glorious sight of her insects mingling with her flowers. However once again the Father urged her on.

The Mother ventured into a very deep cave, spreading her light around her. Her heat melted the ice and the rivers and streams of the world were created. Then she created the fish and small snakes, lizards and frogs. Next she awoke the spirits of the birds and animals and they burst into the sunshine in a glorious array of colors. Seeing this the Father of All Spirits was pleased with the Sun Mother's work. She called all of the creatures to her and instructed them to enjoy the wealth of the earth and to live peacefully with one another. Then she rose into the sky and became the sun.

The creatures watched the Sun in awe as she crept across the sky, towards the west. However when she finally sunk beneath the horizon they were panic-stricken, thinking she had deserted them. All night they stood frozen in their places, thinking that the end of time had come. After what seemed to them like a lifetime the Sun Mother peeked her head above the horizon in the East. The earth's children learned to expect her coming and going and were no longer afraid.
At first the children lived together peacefully, but eventually envy crept into their hearts.

They began to argue. The Sun Mother was forced to come down from her home in the sky to mediate their bickering. She gave each creature the power to change their form to whatever they chose. However she was not pleased with the end result. The rats she had made had changed into bats; there were giant lizards and fish with blue tongues and feet. However the oddest of the new animals was an animal with a bill like a duck, teeth for chewing, a tail like a beavers and the ability to lay egg. It was called the platypus.

The Sun Mother looked down upon the Earth and thought to herself that she must create new creatures less the Father of All Spirits be angered by what she now saw. She gave birth to two children. The god was the Morning Star and the goddess was the moon. Two children were born to them and these she sent to Earth. They became our ancestors. She made them superior to the animals because they had part of her mind and would never want to change their shape.


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