Ms. O’ Neill
11 February 2015
Native American Creation Myths: Inner Beings
A creation myth is a symbolic narrative of how the world began and where humanity came from. Creation myths often share a number of features; however, due to the vast amount of Native American cultures a wide variety of different myths were supported. Within these myths, individual views on the creation of the world, customs, and guidance took place. The Native American creation myths, which will be examined throughout the remainder of this paper encompass, “The World on the Turtles Back,” by the Iroquois, and “The Ancient One,” by Bearwalker. These two very well known myths when analyzed present both immensely different and drastically similar views on the world. This includes their opposing views on handed down social standards and the same belief in spiritual awareness. Generally speaking, when it came to Native American society, social standards were highly regarded. The understanding of how to conduct oneself and how to pass that knowledge down was all provided within their creation myths. Nevertheless, when these myths were compared to one another it became apparent that different cultures provided their own opinions on what was acceptable and unacceptable. For example, in the myth “The World on the Turtles Back” a tale of hatred and creation took place between two “twins”. In the story an altercation arose, ultimately influencing Iroquois society to focus strictly on the restoration of broken values. This is seen in the statement, “As the brothers contested in duels, day after day, an inhumane passion to destroy one another suffused their tempered minds. In the end leaving only one to return” (Iroquois Pg.30). In contrast, the myth known as “The Ancient One” discussed the importance of keeping social values to a minimum significance, ...
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