Friday, June 10, 2011

Mount Shasta, Sacred Mountain pt 3 – The Great Flood

Photo by Living Shasta Photography
Indigenous peoples of the Pacific Northwest recognized Mount Shasta as a place of such immense grandeur and power that its existence could only be attributed to the Great Spirit, or Creator. The mountain, therefore, was also many tribes’ spiritual center: it was held to be the Great Spirit’s wigwam. The smoke and steam seen as the summit was the smoke-hole of the Spirit’s lodge, as well as the entrance to the Earth. Native American legends connected the material and spiritual worlds and described the powerful natural forces that people witnessed in their environment.

These indigenous mythologies are consistent with other myths of dwellers within Mount Shasta, such as the legend of a mystical brotherhood of lemurian adepts believed to roam through jeweled corridors deep inside the mountain. Taken together, these Shasta myths… both native and non-native… are in turn consistent with other mythologies of spirit folk or fairies living within the Earth, Hollow Earth theory, as well as legends of a “Brotherhood of Ascended Masters.” Mythologies such as these can be found the world over and throughout history, with each culture or civilization having it’s own unique version of the larger, archetypical mythos.

One very special mythos, found the world over, is the legend of the “Deluge” or great flood. This story typically involves divine intervention with it’s/their intention to preserve the myriad of terrestrial species. Additionally, the Shasta flood myth involves Coyote, the ubiquitous trickster character, which in many cultures is associated with the acquisition of technologies, such as the ancient Greek Prometheus stealing fire from the Gods. The following myth not only illustrates the “Deluge” but also the concept of an ancient proto race or “Ultraterrestrials” upon the Earth and living as companions or stewards along side humans…

Mount Shasta & the Great Flood
The Indians of the Pacific Northwest, and those of some other areas also, believed that before the first Indians were created, the world was in habited by a race of animal people. In some tribes, chiefly between the Rocky Mountains and the Cascade range, the shrewdest and most powerful of those people was Coyote. What follows is a flood myth from the Shasta people…

Once Coyote was traveling around, carrying his bow and arrows with him. He came to a body of water where an evil spirit lived. Seeing Coyote, the evil spirit rose out of the water and said “there is no wood.” Then the evil being caused the water to rise and overflow the land until Coyote was covered.

After a time, the water went down and the land dried off. Coyote sprang up, took his bow and arrow and shot the evil spirit. Then Coyote ran away.

But the water followed him. Coyote ran to higher ground. The water followed him to higher ground. He started up Mount Shasta. The water followed him up Mount Shasta. He ran to the top of the mountain. The water followed him and became very deep, but it did not quite reach the top.

On top of Mount Shasta, Coyote made a fire, on the only ground left above the water. Grizzly Bear saw the fire and swam to the top of the mountain. Deer saw the fire and swam to it. So did Elk, Black Bear, Grey Squirrel, Jack Rabbit, and Ground Squirrel.

Badger, Porcupine, and Raccoon saw the fire and swam to it. Fisher, Wolf, and Mountain Lion swam there. All the animal people stayed on top of Mount Shasta until the great flood was over. At last the water went down, leaving dry land in the midst of lakes and marshes.

Then the animal people came down from the top of Mount Shasta and made new homes for themselves. They scattered everywhere and became the ancestors of all the animal people on the earth.

This story not only incorporates all of the elements of the “Noah & the Ark” mythos, including the flood and subsequent refuge upon a grand mountaintop, but the preservation of all the animals of earth. It also incorporates intervention/communication with the higher powers, as does the biblical version. Of interest in the above story is the “Evil Water Spirit” that pursues Coyote. This is reminiscent of the Naiads or the Sirens… or even amphibian aliens of modern mythology.

Psychologically speaking… the symbol of water could correlate with the “collective unconscious” welling up to engulf humanity.

Many scholars believe that the great flood, found in the bible, was taken from a much older version found in “The Epic of Gilgamesh” considered to be Humanity’s oldest written story. The Gilgamesh story is that of the quest for immortality. Scholars link this epic to the Epic of Atrahasis, which Stephanie Dalley, in her book entitled "Myths from Mesopotamia," mentions the similarity of the name Atra-Hasis to that of Prometheus (“Forethinker”), father of the Greek Deluge hero Deucalion.

Interestingly, and as pointed out in an earlier post, the Gilgamesh story not only includes a flood myth… it also features a Wildman character, known in Pacific Northwest legend as… Bigfoot. The enduring myth of Bigfoot is considered credible by many, even to this day.

Is it a coincidence that the Pacific Northwest’s Bigfoot creature lurks around Mount Shasta… home of the Lemurians, just as his Asian cousin, the Yeti lurks around the Himalayas... home of the Ascended Masters?
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