As outbreaks of “crazy sickness” continue to afflict Nicaraguan Miskitu towns and villages, we revisit the story of the Duhindu of Kambla, or how the community overcame their first case of this “culture-bound syndrome,” blamed on the dark supernatural forces out of the wild bush.
Miskitu Legend: The Mangoes of the Dead
A story from the Nicaraguan Miskitu People about the mango trees planted to feed the dead in the cemetery, and the fear of stealing the ripe fruits.
Mythological Journey to the Aztec Underworld
In Aztec cosmology, the soul’s journey to the Underworld after death leaves them with four destinations: the Sacred Orchard of the Gods, the Place of Darkness, the Kingdom of the Sun, and a paradise called the Mansion of the Moon. The most common deaths end up on their way to Mictlán with its nine levels, crashing mountains and rushing rivers, and four years of struggle. This pantheon of gods and goddesses and the expanse of the 13 Heavens provides the cultural basis for the Day of the Dead customs and celebrations.
Aztec Myth: Quetzalcoatl Rescues Humanity in the Land of the Dead
Part of the Mesoamerican myth of the origin of people, where Quetzalcoatl, the Plumed Serpent, descends into the Land of the Dead, Mictlán, to rescue the bones of humanity and bring them back to life.
Goethe’s “Sorcerer’s Apprentice”: Power Over Wisdom
“The Sorcerer’s Apprentice,” an ages-old fairy tale interpreted as a poem by Goethe, made famous today by Disney’s “Fantasia,” illustrated the dangers of power over wisdom, and the risk of human creations getting out of control.
Shoshone Myth: Wolf Challenges the Euro-American “Iron-Man”
Northern Shoshone Myth on how the Wolf, father of the native people, defeated the white-man’s father “Iron-Man,” documented by Robert Harry Lowie in 1909.