When you think of the beginning of time or the creation of the world and man, you may refer to the words of the Genesis, but there are thousands of different myths, legends, tales and beliefs that deal with creation. In this article, we will look at some of the creation myths associated with Africa, including the Bantu tribe, as well as Zulus.
The Zulus refer to their creator as Unkulunkulu, which is also called “The Ancient One.” Unkulunkulu emerged from the reeds, bringing with him the people and cattle. He is credited with creating all that exists, including the mountains, the waters and the animals. He is also the one who is believed to have taught the Zulu how to hunt for their food, create fire, as well as how to grow the rest of their food.
The Boshongo is a Bantu tribe that can be located within Central Africa. It is believed that in the beginning, only darkness, water and the god, Bumba, were the only entities that existed. The myth associated with the creation of the world states that one day, Bumba suffered from an ache in his stomach. Soon after, he vomited the sun. The sun made some of the water dry up, which created land. The pain intensified and Bumba vomited the stars, moon, as well as a few animals. Soon, leopards, crocodiles and turtles existed. After the animals, came man. One of the first inhabitants was called Yoko Lima, which was white in color (just like Bumba).
In Nigeria, the Eflk tribe attributes the creation of the world to Abassi, who created two humans. Soon after their creation, he restricted them from living on Earth. It was his wife who urged him to allow them to live there. He agreed, but wanted to control them, so he ordered that all meals would be eaten with him. This was to dissuade them from hunting and growing their own food. He also would not allow them to have children. It didn’t take long, but the woman started to grow food and sure enough, they stopped eating their meals with Abassi. In the fields, the man began to work as well and not long after, children followed. Abassi was irate and put the blame on his wife, who eased him mind by sending death and unhappiness on earth to make sure they did not get out of hand.
In Southern Nigeria, the Ekois tell tales of two gods called Obassi Osaw and Obassi Nsi, who were responsible for creating all that roamed the earth. One day, Obassi Osaw decided to live in the sky, while Obassi Nsi made his home on Earth. Obassi Osaw became the god of the sky, who provided light and moisture to the people. But with this, he also controlled droughts and storms. Obassi Nsi became the god of the earth, who was known for his nurturing qualities. The god responsible for creating man was the god of the sky, who put a man and woman on Earth. They were ignorant to the ways of survival, so it was the god of the earth who taught them how to survive. He accomplished this by showing them how to hunt and plant their food.