Bakunawa  

Posted by Stella Clark

Bakunawa Cover
The Bakunawa, also known as Bakonawa, Baconaua, or Bakonaua, is a deity in Philippine mythology that is often represented as a gigantic sea serpent. It is believed to be the god of the underworld and is often considered to be the cause of eclipses. It appears as a giant sea serpent with a mouth the size of a lake, a red tongue, whiskers, gills, small wires at its sides, and two sets of wings, one is large and ash-gray while the other is small and is found further down its body.

Tales about the Bakunawa say that it is the cause of eclipses. During ancient times, Filipinos believe that there are seven moons created by Bathala to light up the sky. The Bakonawa, amazed by their beauty, would rise from the ocean and swallow the moons whole, angering Bathala and causing them to be mortal enemies.

To keep the Bakonawa moons from completely being swallowed, ancient Filipinos would go out of their homes with pans and pots, and would make noise in order to scare the Bakonawa into spitting out the moon back into the sky.

In Filipino folk literature, the Bakonawa is said to have a sister in the form of a sea turtle. The sea turtle would visit a certain island in the Philippines in order to lay its eggs. However, locals soon discovered that every time the sea turtle went to shore, the water seemed to follow her, thus reducing the island's size. Worried that their island would eventually disappear, the locals killed the sea turtle.

When the Bakunawa found out about this, it arose from the sea and ate the moon. The people were afraid so they prayed to Bathala to punish the creature. Bathala refused but instead told them to bang some pots and pans in order to disturb the serpent. The moon is then regurgitated while the Bakunawa disappeared, never to be seen again.

The island where the sea turtle lays its eggs is said to exist today. Some sources say that the island might just be one of the Turtle Islands.

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Marduk  

Posted by Stella Clark

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Marduk was the Babylonian name of a late-generation god from ancient Mesopotamia and patron deity of the city of Babylon, who, when Babylon became the political center of the Euphrates valley in the time of Hammurabi, started to slowly rise to the position of the head of the Babylonian pantheon, a position he fully acquired by the second half of the second millennium BCE. In the perfected system of astrology, the planet Jupiter was associated with Marduk by the Hammurabi period.

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Goddess Hina Ulu Ohia  

Posted by Stella Clark

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HINA-'ULU-'OHI'A is the Hawaiian Goddess of the 'ohi'a tree. On the island of Oahu, she is thought to be the wife of Ku-ka-'ohi'a-laka, God of canoe builders, but on Maui she is the wife of Kaha'i, God of lightning. In legends, Hina-'ulu-'ohi'a protects children and appears as a beautiful woman covered in the leaves and red flowers of the 'ohi'a tree. The tree is sacred to both Hina-'ulu-'ohi'a and Ku-ka-'ohi'a-laka, and special ceremonies must be performed before the flowers or leaves are gathered. Hina-'ulu-'ohi'a's name means "woman of the 'ohi'a tree," and she is also known as LA-EA (in her aspect as Goddess of canoe builders) and NAHINAHI-ANA (in an aspect in which she dyed and stamped kapa, or bark cloth).

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