Native American Tales

The White Dawn of the Hopi

The White Dawn of the HopiThe White Dawn of the Hopi

Hopi

There were two goddesses of rocks and clay. One lived in the east and one lived in the west. They were each called Huruing Wuhti. The sun crossed between them, dressing in white, and creating the white dawn. He mentioned to both of the goddesses that there were no living things on the land. They created a wren to fly around and look. She confirmed that there were indeed no living things.

Both Huruing Wuhtis began creating animals and people, but there was also Spider Woman in the southwest, she lived alone. She saw that the Huruing Wuhtis were creating things, so she created some people to live near her. She created them in pairs at first. She gave each pair a different language. She created Spanish people first. At one point, she forgot to created a woman for one man, so there was a single man. Then she created a single woman and told the two that they would have to find each other. They did, but they each knew they could live on their own and this led to many quarrels between the two. They split up, then made up, but it didn’t last. They always quarreled and so this is why husband and wives quarrel so much.

The Huruing Wuhtis had created people as well and had taught them how to live, but those people also became quarrelsome. They would fight over food. The other couples learned quarreling from Spider Woman’s quarreling couple. Both Huruing Wuhtis got fed up with the people’s quarreling so they each left to live in the middle of their respective oceans. If anyone needs to make an offering to either of them they must pray in their villages rather than going to see the Huruing Wuhtis themselves.

Observations

A kiva is a type of structure that was found among the southwest natives in the United States. They were primarily underground, but also came to be built above-ground at one point. You had to get into a kiva by way of the roof. You climbed down a ladder. The kivas were originally intended as religious structures associated with kachina worship, but some kivas were actually living dwellings. The Huruing Wuhtis would have lived underground in their kivas and used a ladder to enter into them, as the story says they did. I don’t know how living in a kiva in the middle of the ocean would have worked out though.

Themes

This is a creation story, but it’s also the story of why we don’t get along, especially couples. You know, if you think about it, we do sort of argue because we could live on our own. I could live on my own and do things a certain way and be just fine. You could live on your own and do things another way and be just fine. We could live together and then “discuss” which way of doing that thing is better. I really mean argue when I saw discuss. We are different people and we can certainly live on our own just fine, although it’s not always fun. I’ve been living on my own for over a year now and sometimes it’s nice to have someone else there, even if they’re going to argue with you about taking out the trash.

We argue because we would do things a certain way and the other person isn’t doing things that way and we think that’s wrong or inefficient so we say something and then it ends up being an argument. If we were paired up from the beginning, maybe we wouldn’t argue, because we wouldn’t know any other way to live. Our ways of living would be the same. Either both of you would pick your nose while watching TV or neither of you would pick your nose while watching TV; there wouldn’t be any arguments about how one of you, probably the man, picking his nose while watching TV is gross and unsanitary.

Overall

This story is definitely something to think about.

Weigh In

If you could eliminate the idea that there are different ways of living in your brain and your significant other’s brain, do you think it would cut down on arguments?

Do you think people would have found arguing anyway even without Spider Woman’s intervention?

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