The Mythology of Day and Night
Humans, ever since the dawn of time, have been as curious as cats—possibly more. We deem it necessary to have an explanation for everything. This causes us to create many theories, whether it be why it snows or how a little insect flies.
Little of our universe can be fully explained, but science is there to find the truth. However, before science matured to what we have today, we had created the simplest possible explanations for everything.
Some cultures had the most outrageous theories. However, they are also interesting.
According to the Nihon Shoki, there were three siblings who came from the god Izanagi-no-Mikoto and the goddess Izanami-no-Mikoto. The three gods were Amaterasu (the goddess of the Sun and ruler of the heaven), Tsukiyomi (the god of the Moon and ruler of the night), and Susanoo (the god of storms and ruler of the seas).
One day, Amaterasu commanded Tsukiyomi to go to Earth and pay a visit to Uke-Mochi, the food goddess. To bid Tsukiyomi welcome, Uke-Mochi vomited rice, fish, and other animals onto the Earth. Uke-Mochi then used the same method to serve Tsukiyomi food at a banquet.
Unsurprisingly, Tsukiyomi was so offended and disgusted by the act that he killed Uke-Mochi. Once Tsukiyomi returned to heaven, he told Amaterasu what had happened during his visit. Amaterasu was so displeased by her brother’s actions that she swore to never meet and face him again.
Hence, when the Sun sets, the Moon flees from the Sun for eternity.
In Aztec mythology, there were four different gods who became the Sun; however, all of them perished due to feuds with other gods. After the gods had another large feud over the validity of the fourth god, the world was destroyed, and again there was no Sun god.
All of the gods knew that, if a fifth Sun god took over, another feud would erupt and eventually destroy the world again. Thus, no one volunteered to become the Sun god, while darkness loomed and swallowed the world.
The Sun, however, was a vital part of the world, so the gods created a council to vote for the fifth Sun god. This time, the gods decided that the god who was picked must kill himself to save the world. Two gods were picked: Tecciztecatl and Nanauatl.
A great fire was created for the two gods to sacrifice themselves. Tecciztecatl was the first one to attempt to jump into the fire, but he was so scared of the sheer heat of the fire that he retreated back four times.
The gods became tired of Tecciztecatl’s folly, so they asked Nanauatl to jump into the flames. Nanauatl, without a second thought, jumped into the fire and became the Sun. Tecciztecatl’s pride was hurt, and he decided to jump into the flames at last.
Finally, there were two suns born from the fire, but the gods did not like the idea of having two suns in the sky. Hence, they threw a rabbit at Tecciztecatl, which left a mark of the rabbit on him.
This made Tecciztecatl dimmer, and created the Moon. However, Tecciztecatl was angry at Nanauatl, for he hasn’t forgotten Nanauatl’s actions. So, ever since he became the Moon, he attempted to chase Nanauatl.
Thus, when Nanauatl is seen, his brightness creates daytime. When Tecciztecatl is seen, his dimness creates darkness and night.
The Egyptian pantheon is one of the most famous pantheons in the world, along with the Greek, Roman, and Norse pantheons. Ra (or Re) is the Sun god in Egyptian mythology. Ra is believed to be one of the only Egyptian gods to not inhabit the Earth. Instead, he lives in the sky, due to his old age.
Ra rides on a solar bark, which represents the Sun, and travels through the 12 provinces, which represent the 12 hours of day—thus creating daytime. Ra, however, dies every sunset, which gives darkness throughout the world.
In his dead form, he goes through the Underworld in his night bark. During his travels through the Underworld, he fights the snake demon named Apep. At sunrise, it is believed that Ra has defeated Apep once again.
Ra proceeds to travel on his solar bark, until he dies once more.
There are two night gods. Khonsu is the newest Moon god, eclipsing the old Moon god—Iah. Khonsu travels across the world in Ra’s absence, to guide people to their destination. Iah is thought to be the reason why there are 365 days in a year.
The Lakota, a Native American tribe, used to inhabit the states of South Dakota, North Dakota, Montana, Nebraska, and Minnesota. They also lived in parts of Canada, specifically Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Alberta. They are more popularly known as the Sioux, but this name is deemed insulting to them.
Hanwi is the Moon goddess in Lakota mythology. Wi, the Sun god, once took a mortal, named Iktomi, to replace Hanwi’s place next to him at a feast. Skan, the sky god, denounced Wi for his actions, and decided to punish him.
Skan took Hanwi from Wi and gave her rule over the night. Meanwhile, he ordered Wi to only rule over the day, never being allowed to see Hanwi.
Hanwi, for eternity, will be depressed due to Wi’s actions. She shows her shame by hiding different parts of her face, thus creating the Moon cycle.
Mesopotamia is the birthplace of many of the first civilizations, including Sumerians, Akkadians, Amorites, Hittites, Kassites, Assyrians, and Chaldeans.
Shamash, the Sun god, was believed to be the child of the Moon god, Sin. He is depicted as the god of justice and equality. Shamash repeatedly rises from the east, on foot or a chariot, with Sun rays emanating from his shoulders.
While he is providing sunlight for the world, he also presides over courts—for men and gods alike.
However, his duty is not limited to our world—he must also do this in the Underworld. He travels to the Underworld by descending in the west, thus creating darkness and night. In the Underworld, Shamash also presides over courts, where he judges the disputes of the dead.
The Inuit are people of Asian origin, who inhabit the arctic regions of the United States, Canada, and parts of Greenland.
Malina, the Inuit Sun goddess, lived with her brother Anningan, the Moon god. One day, they had a large dispute and it turned ugly. During the dispute, Malina spread black grease over Anningan’s face.
Regretting her decision, she ran away from their house and became the Sun. Anningan chased after her to the point where he transformed into the Moon. In this event, the day and night rotation was born.
Anningan sometimes begins to neglect his needs and begins to starve, so he gets thinner and thinner, which represents the Moon cycle. There is a more sinister myth surrounding Malina and Anningan.
In this version of the story, Anningan rapes Malina.
Malina is the Sun goddess of the Inuit people who live in Greenland. The word “Inuit” means “people.” Its singular form is Inuk. The Athapascan speaking tribes of Alaska and Canada used to address the Inuit people with the offensive term of “Eskimo” which means “eaters of raw meat.”
Malina and her brother, the Moon god Anningan, lived together and used to play games. But once adults, things changed. One night, while they were playing in the dark (as they used to do when they were children), Anningan raped his sister.
During the fight, a seal-oil lamp overturned, soiling Malina’s hands with black grease. When Malina tried in vain to push Anningan away, she blackened his face with her dirty and greasy hands.
She ran as far as she could into the sky, where she became the Sun. Anningan, showing no remorse for his crime, continued to chase his sister in the sky where he became the Moon. This eternal race makes the Sun alternate with the Moon in the sky.
But occasionally, the Moon god reaches the Sun goddess and rapes her again, causing a solar eclipse.
Anningan concentrates on his sister so much that he often forgets to eat. So as the days go by, he gets thinner. Once a month, the Moon disappears for three days, so the Moon god can eat. He always returns to chase his sister again. This is how the Inuit people explained the phases of the Moon.
Sun and Moon hate each other and human beings of the opposite sex. Thus, during a solar eclipse, men are not supposed to go out. On the other hand, women do not leave their houses during the lunar eclipse.
The Sun goddess and the Moon god are noxious spirits that send diseases upon those who offend them.
The Mamaiurans are an Amazonian tribe that inhabit Brazil. According to their mythology, the world was originally covered in darkness. This darkness was caused by the immense population of birds, who annoyingly blocked out the Sun and its light with their wings.
Two humans, named Kuat and Iae, were both tired of the birds taking all the sunlight for themselves. They hatched a plan, in which they decided to trap the king of the birds—Urubutsin. They both hid inside a dead animal’s corpse, and waited for Urubutsin to land.
When he landed, Kuat leaped out of the corpse and caught Urubutsin by his leg. Kuat demanded the king to share some of the sunlight with the rest of the world. Unable to flee, Urubutsin was forced to agree.
Like the Inuit myth, this one also has another version. In this version, the bids are vultures and Urubutsin is given a carcass filled with maggots as a gift.
Brazilian God of the Sun
Kuat and Iae were twin brothers born in primeval darkness. They discovered that light was owned by Urubutsin the Vulture King who hoarded it all for himself.
Not wanting to spend the rest of their lives in the dark, Kuat sent him a gift: a delicious carcass crawling with maggots. Urubutsin enjoyed this very much and demanded more. But he refused to shed even a tiny shred of light.
The next carcass was a skin that contained nothing but the twins hiding inside. When the vulture swooped down they grabbed hold of him.
In the ensuing fight Urubutsin ‘s head feathers were torn out, which is why vultures are bald. After this he submitted to giving up half his light. Kuat threw handfuls into the sky and flew up after it to become the Sun God.
Iae did likewise and became God of the Moon. Urubutsin stayed addicted to dead snacks but always checked they were totally dead first — maggots excepted.
Narfi, a giant that lived in Jotunheim, had a daughter named Nott. Nott was different from the other Norse women, since she had dark hair and complexion. She wore stars as hair clips, making her more attractive to men.
She had three husbands. The first, Naglfari, whom she had a child named Aud with; the second, Annar, whom she had a child named Jord with; and the last one, named Dellingr, whom she had a son named Dagr with.
The gods found out about Nott and her children, so they put them all to good use in their creation of the universe. Nott and Dagr were given chariots and horses to travel around the Earth. The gods also decided to give them a specific set of hours to circle the Earth—12 hours each.
Nott’s main horse, Hrimfaxi, drops water from his mane wherever Nott leads him, creating morning dew. Meanwhile, Dagr provides brightness with his bright, golden hair.
In the Sky World, there was a pregnant woman and her brother. She was very curious about the Tree of Life, which covered the entrance to the world below. No one was allowed to tamper with it.
One day, the woman persuaded her brother to move the tree. The entrance was uncovered, and the woman curiously peeked out of it. Being a clumsy being, she fell, but attempted to save herself by grasping at the root of the tree. She failed, however, and grasped some dirt, which fell with her.
The birds of the world, being alerted by the woman’s calls for help, came to save her. Eventually, they safely landed on a sea turtle’s back. There, the woman created the Earth, went into labor, and gave birth to two twins.
Unfortunately, the woman died due to the rebellious way the Left-Handed Twin was born. Left-Handed Twin and Right-Handed Twin were the antitheses of each other—Right-Handed Twin being the good twin, and Left-Handed Twin being the evil twin.
They were nurtured by their grandmother, Sky Woman, who died shortly after they grew up. The twins then fought over her body, and eventually tore it apart. Sky Woman’s head was thrown into the sky and became the Moon.
Left-Handed Twin and Right-Handed Twin knew that there was no chance they would come to an agreement on anything. Therefore, they decided to dwell in different realms.
Right-Handed Twin would dwell on Earth first, creating the day. Afterwards, Left-Handed Twin would dwell on Earth, creating the night, where evil roams more freely.
The Filipinos had a very interesting myth about day and night. After the Spanish conquest of the Philippine Islands, the native religion had faded from memory.
In Filipino mythology, there were two gods: Apolaki, who ruled over the Sun, and his sister Mayari, who ruled over the Moon. Their father, Bathala, ruled over the entire world from the heavens, following his battle with Ulilang Kaluluwa.
Sadly, Bathala’s reign ended with his death, and a power struggle between Apolaki and Mayari began. Apolaki wanted to become the sole ruler of the heavens and the world, while Mayari had other plans: She sought to share the reign with Apolaki.
In one battle, Apolaki took out one of his sister’s eyes. After the battle, Apolaki began to contemplate his actions, eventually beginning to regret them. To show his regret, Apolaki agreed to share the heavens and the world with Mayari.
First, Apolaki would rule with the Sun; then, Mayari would rule. Yet due to her loss of an eye, when she reigns over the heavens and the Earth, her power wanes, making the Moon dim.
Narfi was one of the first giants to colonize Jotunheim. Narfi had a beautiful daughter called Night. Night was unlike the other Viking women in appearance with dusky hair and a dark complexion, her appearance was enhanced by the bright stars she wore in her long hair.
As can be expected many men wished to marry Night and so it came to pass that she married three husbands one after the other.
The first husband Night took was known as Naglfari or Darkling, and who may have been a distant cousin of hers. Night’s first marriage did not last long but she did bear a son by Naglfari and he was called Space.
However there is some mystery surrounding Night’s second marriage. No one ever called him anything other than ‘Another’, it could be that this was only a bye-name, one used to disguise his true identity.
One of the few facts known about him is that he was not a giant, one could speculate that if he was not a giant then he had to have been a God for no other beings were created at that time.
Nonetheless Night and ‘Another’ produced a lovely daughter named Earth, of all the Gods only Odin himself had a daughter by that name – so one is left with an interesting question.
Night’s third husband was called Delling, which means Dawn. There is no doubt that Delling was a relative of the Gods and as his name shows he was bright and fair. They had a son named Day who took after his Father in appearance.
The Gods knew about Night and her various children and decided to work them into their plans for the Universe. It was decided that each twenty-four hours should be divided in two, and that half should be light and the other half dark.
The gods gave Night and her son Day each a chariot and a pair of horses and sent them up into the heavens to drive around the Earth in twelve hour shifts one after the other. Night drove her chariot first and with her lead horse called Frostymane drove around the Earth.
As Frostymane champed his bit his spittle fell to the earth and that is why each day just before dawn it can be seen gathering in beads upon leaves and flower petals.
Behind gallops Day, his chariot drawn by his lead horse Shiningmane. The brightness of Day with his golden hair and his two shining steeds illuminates all of Earth and sky.
Now we all know the truth, and all this time I thought You created the day and night (Gen 1:5). Well Father, I got to say, when You gave us free will You truly did. Not only with our behavior but with our minds as well. Some people just have very large imagination.
There are many other myths and even though they may be ridiculous, I found something else that shows complete stupidity at its finest. Tomorrow we’ll look at…
The Value of Life
The following pictures all pertain to Saint Peter.
1 In the meantime, when there were gathered together an innumerable multitude of people, insomuch that they trode one upon another, he began to say unto his disciples first of all, Beware ye of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy.
2 For there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; neither hid, that shall not be known.
“Nothing covered, that shall not be revealed” – in this context the meaning is that nothing hidden through hypocrisy will fall to be made known.
3 Therefore whatsoever ye have spoken in darkness shall be heard in the light; and that which ye have spoken in the ear in closets shall be proclaimed upon the housetops.
4 And I say unto you my friends, Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do.
5 But I will forewarn you whom ye shall fear: Fear him, which after he hath killed hath power to cast into hell; yea, I say unto you, Fear him.
“Hath power to cast into hell” – God alone has this power, no one else does.
6 Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings, and not one of them is forgotten before God?
7 But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not therefore: ye are of more value than many sparrows.
8 Also I say unto you, Whosoever shall confess me before men, him shall the Son of man also confess before the angels of God:
“Confess me” – when a person acknowledges that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, Jesus acknowledges that the individual is His loyal follower.
9 But he that denieth me before men shall be denied before the angels of God.
10 And whosoever shall speak a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but unto him that blasphemeth against the Holy Ghost it shall not be forgiven.
11 And when they bring you unto the synagogues, and unto magistrates, and powers, take ye no thought how or what thing ye shall answer, or what ye shall say:
12 For the Holy Ghost shall teach you in the same hour what ye ought to say.
13 And one of the company said unto him, Master, speak to my brother, that he divide the inheritance with me.
14 And he said unto him, Man, who made me a judge or a divider over you?
15 And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth.
16 And he spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully:
17 And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits?
18 And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods.
19 And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry.
20 But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided?
21 So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.
22 And he said unto his disciples, Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat; neither for the body, what ye shall put on.
23 The life is more than meat, and the body is more than raiment.
24 Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor reap; which neither have storehouse nor barn; and God feedeth them: how much more are ye better than the fowls?
25 And which of you with taking thought can add to his stature one cubit?
26 If ye then be not able to do that thing which is least, why take ye thought for the rest?
27 Consider the lilies how they grow: they toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you, that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.
28 If then God so clothe the grass, which is to day in the field, and tomorrow is cast into the oven; how much more will he clothe you, O ye of little faith?
29 And seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind.
30 For all these things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things.
31 But rather seek ye the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you.
“Seek ye the kingdom” – since v. 32 suggests that Jesus is speaking to believers, who already possess the kingdom, this command probably means that Christians should seek the spiritual benefits of the kingdom rather than the material goods of the world.
But if He’s talking in general, then those that don’t believe should seek the kingdom and then they will see how incorrect their heart is.
32 Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.
33 Sell that ye have, and give alms; provide yourselves bags which wax not old, a treasure in the heavens that faileth not, where no thief approacheth, neither moth corrupteth.
34 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
35 Let your loins be girded about, and your lights burning;
36 And ye yourselves like unto men that wait for their lord, when he will return from the wedding; that when he cometh and knocketh, they may open unto him immediately.
37 Blessed are those servants, whom the lord when he cometh shall find watching: verily I say unto you, that he shall gird himself, and make them to sit down to meat, and will come forth and serve them.
38 And if he shall come in the second watch, or come in the third watch, and find them so, blessed are those servants.
39 And this know, that if the Goodman of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched, and not have suffered his house to be broken through.
40 Be ye therefore ready also: for the Son of man cometh at an hour when ye think not.
41 Then Peter said unto him, Lord, speakest thou this parable unto us, or even to all?
Jesus taught the people in parables that used a more direct approach with the disciples. However, he didn’t intend these warnings of watchfulness just for the disciples. In the following verses He emphasizes the duty to fulfill responsibilities.
This doesn’t pertain only to what we do for God, but in all that we do, we are supposed to do it as though we are doing it for Jesus, because if nobody else knows what we do, He knows.
“And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, s to the Lord, and not unto men (Col 3:23).
42 And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season?
43 Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing.
44 Of a truth I say unto you, that he will make him ruler over all that he hath.
45 But and if that servant say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming; and shall begin to beat the menservants and maidens, and to eat and drink, and to be drunken;
46 The lord of that servant will come in a day when he looketh not for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in sunder, and will appoint him his portion with the unbelievers.
47 And that servant, which knew his lord’s will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes.
48 But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more.
49 I am come to send fire on the earth; and what will I, if it be already kindled?
50 But I have a baptism to be baptized with; and how am I straitened till it be accomplished!
51 Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division:
52 For from henceforth there shall be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three.
53 The father shall be divided against the son, and the son against the father; the mother against the daughter, and the daughter against the mother; the mother in law against her daughter in law, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.
54 And he said also to the people, When ye see a cloud rise out of the west, straightway ye say, There cometh a shower; and so it is.
12:54-56 – wind from the west was from the Mediterranean Sea; from the south it was from the desert. Although people could use such indicators to forecast the weather, they couldn’t recognize the signs of spiritual crisis, the coming of the Messiah, the threat of His death, the coming confrontation with Rome, and the eternal consequences these events would have for their own lives.
55 And when ye see the south wind blow, ye say, There will be heat; and it cometh to pass.
56 Ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky and of the earth; but how is it that ye do not discern this time?
57 Yea, and why even of yourselves judge ye not what is right?
“Of yourselves judge” – despite the insistence of the Pharisees, despite the Roman system, and even despite the pressure of family, a person must accept God on His terms. The signs of the times called for immediate decision – before judgment cam on the Jews nation.
58 When thou goest with thine adversary to the magistrate, as thou art in the way, give diligence that thou mayest be delivered from him; lest he hale thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the officer, and the officer cast thee into prison.
“Give diligence that thou mayest be delivered from him” – settle accounts before it is too late.
59 I tell thee, thou shalt not depart thence, till thou hast paid the very last mite.
“Last mite” – Greek lepton. If a kodrantes is compared to a penny, this coin corresponds to half a penny.