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Slow Chinese 17
Pangu splits the heavens and earth apart
According to the bible, God created the world. But in Chinese legend, the world was created by a giant called Pangu. The story of Pangu is Chinese legend’s central creation myth or Genesis.
Eons ago, the whole world resembled a giant egg, and there was neither light nor sound amidst the turbid murk. In this environment, humanity’s ancient ancestor Pangu was born. He finally awoke with an axe in his hands after laying dormant amidst the primal chaos for many thousands of years, whereupon he ceaselessly dug outward, wanting to escape this darkness. Finally one day, the world was cleaved open: the light floated up to become the sky; the dark floated down to become the earth.
Pangu was worried that the skies and earth would again merge, so he used his hands to support the sky and planted his feet into the earth. Supporting the heavens and earth with his indomitable spirit, he stood for thousands of years. Every day, the distance between the sky and the earth increased, and Pangu’s body grew bigger. When he died, he dedicated his whole body to the earth: his two eyes became the sun and the moon, his hair became the stars in the heavens; the breath from his mouth became the wind and the clouds; his voice became the thunder, his sweat became the rain; his body became the mountains, his flesh became the fields; his skin became the vegetation, his blood became the rivers and lakes.
It is said that the Wuyue, China’s most famous Five Sacred Mountains of the Daoists, are Pangu’s head and limbs.
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