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Apache Creation Myth

In the beginning there was only darkness. Suddenly a small bearded man, the One Who Lives Above, appeared rubbing his eyes as if just awakened. The man, the Creator, rubbed his hands together and there appeared a little girl, Girl-Without-Parents. The creator rubbed his face with his hands and there stood the Sun-God. Again Creator rubbed his sweaty brow and from his hands dropped Small-boy. Now there were four gods.Then he created Tarantula, Big Dipper, Wind, Lightning-Maker and Lightning-Rumbler. All four gods shook hands so that their sweat mixed together. Then Creator rubbed his palms together from which fell a small round, brown ball. They took turns kicking it and with each kick the ball grew larger. Creator told Wind to go inside the ball and blow it up. Then Tarantula spun a black cord which he attached to the ball and went to the east pulling as hard as he could. He repeated this exercise with a blue cord to the south, a yellow cord to the west and a white cord to the north. When he was done the brown ball had become the earth. The Creator again rubbed his hands and there appeared Hummingbird. "Fly all over this earth," said Creator to Hummingbird, "and tell us what you see." When he returned Hummingbird reported that there was water on the west side. But the earth rolled and bounced, so Creator made four giant posts one each black, blue, yellow and white and had Wind place them at the four cardinal points of the earth. The earth was now still. The creation of the people, animals, birds, trees, etc takes place hereafter.

Another Version

Another Apache:
(In many Apache ceremonies the following legend is re-enacted. In the coming-of-age rite sometimes the young girls will wear the costume of the White Painted Woman. Before battles some braves would dance the role of Killer of Enemies.)

The first peoples to arrive on earth were White Painted Woman and her brother, Killer of Enemies. His role was to hunt for food, but every time he killed an animal the Owl Man Giant would swoop down and steal the bounty. He and his sister grew hungrier and hungrier until one day, Life Giver, a spirit, arrived in the form of a thunderstorm. Nine months later White Painted Woman had a baby who was named Child Born of Water. This child grew to be a strong warrior and slew Owl Man Giant in a ferocious fight. These three together helped create the present world.

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