Native American Tales

Montezuma and the Great Flood

Montezuma and the Great FloodMontezuma and the Great Flood


The Great Mystery Power created the Earth and created a big hole. He created a shape out of clay and dropped it into the hole. Out of the hole came Montezuma, followed by all the Indian tribes. Montezuma taught them the things that they should know, how to make baskets and so forth. The Earth was good. There was no winter and not a lot of anything bad to speak of.

Coyote told Montezuma that there would be a flood and that he should make a canoe for when it happened. The flood did happen, and luckily, Montezuma had made his canoe and so did Coyote. They found a piece of land sticking up and both went to it. They looked in the west, the east, and the south, only to find no dry land anywhere, but they found some in the north. The Great Mystery Power began to make people again, as they had died, and put Montezuma in charge of them all.

After a time, Montezuma decided he was a divine power himself. He should rule everything. Coyote was not his equal, but below him. Montezuma said he was the great creator power and that there was no Great Mystery Power. He commanded the people to build a tall tower for him. It went up and up and up.

Things started to change. Good turned to evil. The sun was pushed further away as a warning to Montezuma from the Great Mystery Power and now there was winter. The grand house rose higher and higher, but the Great Mystery Power made the Earth tremble and the house collapsed. When the tower fell, no one could understand each other or the animals. Montezuma vowed that he would tell the people not to worship the Great Mystery Power or to make sacrifices to it. The Great Mystery Power sent men over from a strange land to take over the land of Montezuma. These men came with metal and they were hairy and that was the end of Montezuma’s reign.


This is a mythical Montezuma, not the actual Montezuma you read about in history books, that Montezuma was probably a namesake of this one.

Fun fact, according to the Book of Mormon used by Mormons and other Mormon sects, a group of people came over from the middle-east after the tower of Babel fell. Another fun-fact, there is also a scripture in the Book of Mormon that supposedly foretells the white men coming to the Americas.

12 And I looked and beheld a man among the Gentiles, who was separated from the seed of my brethren by the many waters; and I beheld the Spirit of God, that it came down and wrought upon the man; and he went forth upon the many waters, even unto the seed of my brethren, who were in the promised land.

13 And it came to pass that I beheld the Spirit of God, that it wrought upon other Gentiles; and they went forth out of captivity, upon the many waters.

14 And it came to pass that I beheld many multitudes of the Gentiles upon the land of promise; and I beheld the wrath of God, that it was upon the seed of my brethren; and they were scattered before the Gentiles and were smitten.

15 And I beheld the Spirit of the Lord, that it was upon the Gentiles, and they did prosper and obtain the land for their inheritance; and I beheld that they were white, and exceedingly fair and beautiful, like unto my people before they were slain.

You can find this in 1 Nephi 13: 12-15

Interesting? Right? The passage definitely has some truth to it, whether it’s divine revelation or written by a fourteen-year old boy.

This is clearly a tower of Babel type story. Did the Papago get it from Christians who came over? Did they have it before? Did they have their own Tower of Babel story, just as they had their own flood story?


Ultimately, when you try to defy your divine power, whatever you may consider that, you get burned. You can’t go around saying, “I’m God,” because, surely, something will happen to you for saying so. The people in the Bible, at the tower of Babel, got what they got because they were trying to defy God. Then look what happened. Their tower fell and their languages were confounded.

It really doesn’t matter if you believe in a so-called divine power or not, you know that there are certain rules of the universe/science/whatever that, if you try to defy them, it doesn’t turn out well. If you jump off a ten story building, gravity will surely come up to meet you fairly fast. You can’t just make a decision and say that gravity doesn’t work on you. Gravity works on everyone.


Don’t build tall towers?

Weigh In

Do you think any divine power would be pleased with a tall tower?

Is there truth to the world’s languages being confounded?



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