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The Black Egg, Pan Gu and the World

By , Thursday 7th November 2013 in Myths & Legends

There are many myths about how the world came into existence. Here is one from China.

In the beginning there was Chaos and from the broiling mixture, in the darkness, grew an enormous black egg. Inside this egg, the sleeping giant Pan Gu was formed. For 18 thousand years he slept and he grew. Finally, Pan Gu awoke and yawned and stretched his enormous limbs and broke the egg in two.

The top half was lighter and flew up to become the heavens and the heavier bottom half sank down to became the earth, thus forming the yin and yang.

Pan Gu was pleased with what had happened but also concerned, lest the two parts should come together again and remake Chaos; so he stood between, his head holding up the heavens and his feet on the earth. Thus he stood, growing and growing, pushing the sky and earth further and further apart for another 18 thousand years.

Once sure they would never come together again and now exhausted by his efforts, Pan Gu lay down and died.

However, his whole being started to form the world. His last breaths became the wind and clouds and his voice the rumbling thunder. One eye became the sun, the other the moon. His body and limbs became the five biggest mountains in China, his blood formed the rivers and seas.

The hairs on Pan Gu’s head turned into the myriad stars twinkling in the skies, whilst his skin and other hair became the plants and the trees growing in the good earth created from his flesh.

His sweat flowed like the rain and dew, nourishing all things on earth, while his teeth and bones turned into precious stones and minerals.

Finally, from the numerous small creatures that had lived on his body, came mankind, spreading out over the earth into every corner of the creation that was Pan Gu.

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