Saturday, 2 August 2014


" Jacobson notes that the compression of historical stages within a belief system such as this one and the complementary tension between human and animal, male and female, which accompanies it are reflected in another Evenk concept, that of the cosmic elk. Kheglen the cosmic elk is identified with the Big Dipper constellation, while the Little dipper is regarded as her calf. The two are said to go into tundra thickets by day and to reappear at night when the movements of the constellations enact the great hunt.

  An older version of the myth casts the hunter as the bear, Mangi, who nightly chases and devours the sun-elk of the Great Dipper. Anisimov notes that in Evenk, mangi, as well as meaning "bear", designates "spirit of the ancestors," "master of the lower world," and "devil." Here the elk and the bear appear as quintessentially important cosmic animals while the bear conveys a complex duality role of challenger to the primary animal, the cosmic elk."


Goddesses in World Culture, Volume 1

edited by Patricia Monaghan; pp164

2nd August 2014, Ilindan.

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