China's and Japan's Creation Stories

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China’s Creation Story
In the beginning, the heaven and earth were still one and all was in chaos. The universe was like a big black egg, carrying Pan Gu inside itself. After eighteen thousand years, Pan Gu woke up from a long sleep. Because he felt suffocated, he took up a broad ax and wielded it with all his might to crack open the egg in which he is in. He formed the heavens and the cold, turbid matter formed the earth. Pan Gu stood between them, his head touching the sky, his feet planted on the earth, so that the heaven and the earth would never join again. When Pan Gu died, his body parts became the things on earth. According to some versions of the Pan Gu legend, the sun shone when he was happy, but black clouds gathered in the sky when he was angry. One version of the legend has it that the fleas and lice on his body became the ancestors of mankind.

Japan’s Creation Story
Before the heavens and the earth came into existence, all was in chaos and without definite shape or form. Out of this shapeless mass, something light and transparent rose up and formed the heavens. Three divine beings were materialized and were called the “Three Creating Deities.” In the meantime, what was heavy and opaque precipitated and became the earth. A pair of immortals was born and so were many gods, but the world remained in a chaotic state, so there was nothing for them to do. The gods summoned two divine beings, Izanagi and Izanami. They were a couple who ruled the land, and formed the island of Onokoro. After some time, Izanami bore a son, but the baby was weak and boneless. Their second offspring was as disappointing as the first, so they ascended to heaven and discussed their situation with the heavenly deities. After making up their minds, Izanagi and Izanami went back to earth and the children born to them left nothing to be desired. Their children became the major islands in Japan. After this, the two deities became the parents of numerous smaller islands...
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