Essay by PaperNerd ContributorCollege, Undergraduate October 2001

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THE HOPI CREATION STORY The Hopi are a western branch of the Pueblo and are believed to be descendants of the Anasazi, which lived in the areas of northern Arizona. "The legendary world of Hopi origins lay deep below the surface of today's earth. This may seem strange to people brought up with the concept that the world below is not by any means a place of heavenly bliss but one of hellish damnation." (James 1) The Hopi creation story is about a succession through underworlds and each of these is associated with a specific direction, color, mineral, plant, and bird.

· The First World: "Endless Space" contained the first People and was a pure and happy universe. It was destroyed by fire.

· The Second World: "Dark Midnight" was destroyed by cold and ice. The Chosen People survived in an anthill and then climbed up a ladder into the third world.

· The Third World was destroyed by floods. Spider Women saved these ancestors by hiding them in reeds and floating them to dry land into the Forth World.

· The Forth World: "The World Complete." The caretaker of this world is Masau'u, The Fire God. This world is unlike the previous three, which have been blocked by waters and ice. In the past worlds they had been well-provided for, but the fourth world has proven to be harsh, with deserts, marshes, mountains, and violent weather. The Hopi say this world is now ending and the Fifth World had begun. (Redman 5) The whole creation story of the Hopi tells of one struggle and perseverance. They were farmers by trade and were known not to wage war against their neighbors. The majority of these Native North Americans were located in the area of the Four Corners region of the...

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