Indigenous Myths - Essay Sample

Published: 2023-12-12
Indigenous Myths - Essay Sample
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  History Anthropology Mythology
Pages: 3
Wordcount: 622 words
6 min read


The sky in the tree and the Cherokee creation story showcases the myth of the creation. The creation myths are vital for the globe valuation, human orientation in the universe, and fundamental patterns of culture and life. Creation myths define how things began, hence offering maps that help individuals position themselves, their communities, families, and navigate the domain. Origin stories deliver individuals with ethical and intellectual anchors when they place themselves within something greater.

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The sky tree characters include old chief, Aataentsic, turtle, Beaver, Muskrat, Mink, and Otter. The dream of the old head stimulates the actions that resulted in the creation of the earth. If Aataentsic husband had not disclosed his vision, Aataentsic, his wife, might not have cut down the sky tree. Aataentsicb acts the role of a committed wife as she sacrifices and risks going through the Sky Land hole. Beaver, Mink, Muskrat, and Otter gathered wet soil and positioned it on the turtle's back until the animals established an island of a more significant size (Bruchac 1). The turtle saw Aataentsic as she fell through the hole, thus taking the role of the animals' leader.

The characters in how the world was made comprise water-beetle, Buzzards, and red crawfish. In creating the earth, the water-beetle plays an essential role, revealing animals' significance in Cherokee culture. Buzzards generated a fertile land by flapping, establishing valleys, and mountains (Voelker 1). The red crawfish represents the hot sun on earth as the shell scorched bright red.

The Phenomena in the Sky Tree and Cherokee Creation Story

The sky tree story utilizes anthropomorphism as the turtle was regarded as a person. One day, the chief fell ill and nearly to death; hence, he requested his wife to get the fruit on the sky tree's top to cure the disease. When Aataentsic threw herself after the great tree, the turtle observed her fall and assembled other animals, making them build land on his back (Bruchac 1). After the sea animal established the island, Aataentsic settled gently on the new earth, and the great tree took roots.

The Cherokee creation stories define the earth as a more significant floating island bounded by seawater. The world suspends from the sky by cords connected at the four cardinal points. Besides, the story claims that when the little water beetle came from the sky realm, it led to the earth's establishment (Voelker 1). It dived into the water and came with soft mud rising and spreading on all sides until it became an island.


Cherokee values the earth as she believes that humans are equal to animals and plants. Animals in the Cherokee story had a significant role in creating the world. Individuals are social creatures that desire companionship. Besides, Huron teaches the value of sacrifice. If an individual desires to achieve something of greater worth, one must sacrifice to attain the set goals. For example, Aataentsic throws herself into the hole to follow the sky tree as she wants to protect her husband's life (Bruchac 1). Aataentsic shows her heroism as she struggled and risked all to save the old chief's life.


These myths give individuals an understanding of the power of animals and their responsibility in establishing the world. When the animals who stayed above the sky required more room, the earth and water were created. For instance, from the story, water beetle took mud from the water hence becoming the island. Therefore, humans, animals, and plants were to live and work with unity.

Works Cited

Bruchac. Joseph. The sky tree.

Voelker. David. Cherokee creation story. History tools, August 2016. Accessed 2006 September 09.

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