Navajo Creation Story
By Laura McCrackin
Almost every country and religion of the world has its own ideas of how the earth was created or formed. This is the Navajo understanding:
According to the Navajo, there are four worlds; three of these are underworlds, inhabited by animals, where First Man and First Woman came from, and the fourth, called the Glittering World (our world), which they travelled to.
Upon their arrival in the Glittering World, First Man and First Woman, the Holy People, built a house as their god, Haashch’eelti’i, had instructed them to. Inside it, they decided how to arrange their new world. They assigned names to four sacred mountains, and four sacred stones, the boundries to their land. Then they created the sun and moon, and placed the stars carefully in the sky, when the sly Coyote took hold of the blanket containing the stars and flung them up into the sky. They then continued to make the trees and plants, and everything else in the world.
All was going well when monsters came into the world to destroy the humans and their new world. Ever Changing Woman, who married the Sun, bore two sons, known as "Monster Slayer" and "Child-Born-Of-Water". Their father, the Sun, gave them lightening bolts to use as weapons against the monsters and turn them to stone. Together, the two brothers rid the land of the monsters.
The Holy People then created several clans of man, from which originated many more. Ever Changing woman moved to an island of rock crystal on the southern seas, so that she could be closer to her husband, and created her own four clans so that she would not be lonely.
The new clans created by Ever Changing Woman decided to travel east to meet with the other humans they had heard lived there. They travelled past many great mountains and at last arrived at Dinetah, the Navajo homeland, where they joined the other clans living there.