3 February 2010
Beginning of the World
Before the heavens and the earth came into existence, all was a chaos, unimaginably limitless and without definite shape or form. Eon followed eon: then, Out of this boundless, shapeless mass something light and transparent rose up and formed the heaven. This was the Plain of High Heaven, in which materialized a deity called Minaka (the Deity-of-Center-of-Heaven). Next the heavens gave birth to a deity named Takami (the High-August-Producing Deity), followed by a third called Kammi (the Divine -Deity). These three divine beings are called the Three Creating Deities.
In the meantime what was heavy in the void gradually precipitated and became the earth, but it had taken an immeasurably long time before it condensed sufficiently to form solid ground. In its earliest stages, for millions and millions of years, the earth may be said to have resembled floating, medusa-like, upon the face of the waters. Suddenly like the sprouting up of a reed, pair of immortals was born. These were the Deity Umashi (the Pleasant -Deity) and the Deity Tokotachi (The Heavenly-Eternally-Standing-Deity)
Many gods were then born, and so they increased in number, but as long as the world remained in a chaotic state, there was nothing for them to do. Whereupon, all the Heavenly deities summoned the two divine beings, Izanagi and Izanami, and bade them descend to the nebulous place, and by helping each other, to consolidate it into terra firma. "We bestow on you," they said, "this precious treasure, with which to rule the land, the creation of which we command you to perform." So saying they handed them a spear called Ama Nuboko, embellished with costly gems. The divine couple received respectfully and ceremoniously the sacred weapon and then withdrew from the presence of the Deities, ready to perform their commission. Proceeding with to the Floating Bridge of Heaven, which lay between the heaven and the...