Namorese mythology

Template:Namorese mythology Namorese mythology refers to the myths from ancient Namor that were used to explain the origins of the universe, nature, and the early history of the Namorese people. Namorese mythology is deeply intertwined with Txoism, although it has also influenced other religions in Namor such as Kansism and local variants of Christianity.

Namorese mythology has a history that is as long as Namorese civilization itself. Myths about deities, mythical mortals, and creatures were first transmitted orally before they made their way to artwork and written scriptures, with the earliest written Namorese myths dating back to the Kanamora era. Over time, Namorese myths spread beyond the Nozama River Valley. Regional variants of Namorese mythology, such as Minjianese and Tuhaoese mythology, began to develop. Efforts to standardize Namorese mythology during the Dan dynasty led to the publication of the Book of Gods, which is still regarded as the authoritative source of Namorese myths today.

Sources

Scriptures dating from the Kanamora period are the earliest literary sources of Namorese myths. The priest Tzikun (Namorese for the Lord of Words) is traditionally regarded as the author of the scriptures. According to legend, Tzikun served as the spiritual mentor of King Venlan of Kanamora. To preserve morality in Kanamora, Tzikun composed the Nushenshi (Epic of Nushen), a long epic detailing Nushen's childhood, the war between Nozama and Teyu, and Nushen's reign over Nozama. The Songteshi (Epic of Songte), an epic about the origins of the universal ruler Songte, is also attributed to Tzikun.

While Tzikun is venerated for his supposed role in composing the epic scriptures, evidence of a historical Tzikun who lived or any single person who composed the scriptures is scant at best. Modern scholars thus treat Tzikun as a representation of the larger Kanamora priestly class that transcribed orally narrated myths into written scriptures. Some theorize that the rise of Kanamora made the documentation of orally narrated myths an urgent task; having undergone a period of chaos that resulted in Kanamora's formation, the kingdom's elite tried to protect their myths from being destroyed or distorted by recording them in writing.

Namorese mythology experienced further development during the Chinpun era as the individual city-states sought to bolster their legitimacy by including myths in their official histories. For example, the first ruling house of Namo traced their ancestry to Ganji, a son of the goddess Vanho, hence the name Ganjites. Under the Ganjites, Namo developed various tales about Ganji that entered the local religion.

In 1317, the Book of Gods, a collection of myths found in the scriptures and latter-day texts, was published at the behest of the Dan dynasty. The Dan dynasty hoped that by publishing an official version of all the myths, it would reduce the influence of Christianity and reestablish Txoism's status as the dominant religion in Namor. The Book of Gods gave Namorese mythology a more cohesive form by synthesizing different versions of the same myth, reducing competition between them. For that reason, it is viewed as the latest significant development in Namorese mythology and venerated to the same degree as the original scriptures.

Mythic history

Creation of the universe

The ancient Namorese believed in an infinite succession of universes, with one universe encompassing all existence for trillions of years until it is eventually replaced by a new universe. The current universe is ruled by Songte, who took power after winning a colossal war that destroyed the previous universe and its ruler Taiyi. At present, Songte is believed to be nearing the end of his reign, which means the current universe is nearing its end as well.

According to scripture, Taiyi could not find a male successor since all of his children were females. He built a massive mountain, Kosan, and promised to marry his daughter Murong for anyone who could destroy it. After countless failed attempts by others to destroy Kosan and take Murong as their bride, Songte went up to Kosan and crushed it with his sword, securing Murong for himself. Right after Songte and Murong's marriage, Taiyi dreamed of being crushed by Kosan; interpreting the dream as a prophecy that he would be killed by Songte, Taiyi tried to undo the marriage by bringing Murong back into his fold, only to provoke Songte into a 450,000-year-long war that ended in Taiyi's death.

RIse of human civilization

Murong gave birth to four deities — Sikun, Ninshen, Rishen, and Hoshen — who helped in the construction of Songte's new universe. In turn, Rishen gave birth to Tin, the first man on Earth. After living for a few hundred years, Tin asked Murong to provide him with a partner who could cure his loneliness. Murong accepted Tin's request and slept with her brother Harashen to give birth to Na, the first earthly woman. When Songte discovered Murong's affair, he banished Murong and Harashen to the depths of the underworld and married Vangmu, sister of Murong. As a punishment for Murong's sins, Songte stripped Tin and Na of their immortality and condemned the couple's descendants to eventual death. From Tin and Na descended a race of mortal beings who came to dominate the Earth, separated from the divine by their earthly attachments. Some Txoist scholars interpret the creation of humankind as the beginning of the decline of the current universe.

Tin and Na lived for over a thousand years before dying; their sons, Ho, Non, and Ma, became the progenitors of priests, peasants, and farmers respectively. For generations, the Hoites, Nonites, and Maites lived separately, restricting marriage to within their own clans. This practice continued until the Nozama, a descendant of Ho who could not find a Hoite woman to marry his five sons, asked for the daughters of the Nonites and Maites. In turn, he promised to triple the number of crops yielded by the Nonites and the amount of game found by the Maites. The Nonites and Maites rejected Nozama until a drought and famine hit their lands, forcing them to move to Nozama's land and acquiesce to his requests. Thus a new nation emerged with Nozama as its chieftain. To keep the nation intact, Nozama established a series of laws banning murder, theft, dishonesty, and defilement of the gods.

Calamity of Teyu

After Nozama's death, the land of Nozama split into five tribes led by his five sons and their families — Yazu, Chotai, Jahoi, Tuchin, and Yungzang. In the absence of a unitary ruler who permanently governed the Nozamites, the tribes were united only by their common adherence to the law of Nozama. But as time progressed, the Nozamites gradually forgot about their pledges and committed various vices that slid the Earth into chaos. At the same time, the demon race started to dominate the Earth.

Unsatisfied with his power being constrained to Earth, the demon king Teyu acquired a boon that rendered him undefeatable by any god. He then used his powers to attack and imprison Songte. Having usurped the universal throne, Teyu quickly forced the other gods into submission and imprisoned them as well. Considered to be the darkest age in the history of the universe, Teyu's reign was marked by the depravity of all morality. Murder reduced the Nozamites to a fraction of their original size, theft placed all earthly wealth in the hands of the demons, dishonesty caused humans to worship demons posing as gods, and sacrilege strayed humans farther away from salvation.

Vangmu gave birth to three daughters — Nushen, Vanho, and Yenfang — an event that coincided with lightning striking Teyu's abode. The phenomenon was interpreted as a sign that the eldest of Vangmu's daughters would become the queen of the Nozamites, slay Teyu, and restore order to the universe, an event which was possible because Nushen was a goddess and not a god, from whom Teyu was protected by his powers. Teyu tried to thwart the prophecy by separating the daughters from Vangmu and leaving them in Earth. To delude the Nozamites, he also dispatched his sister Nali to pose as the coming queen. However, this did not stop Nushen from killing Nali and winning recognition from the Nozamites as their queen. Nushen went on to defeat Teyu's forces in a string of battles; finally, she killed Teyu in the Battle of Xhidu. The gods returned to their places and the law of Nozama was restored, ushering in a period of virtue.

Kingdom of Nozama

Nushen ruled Nozama for 105 years before returning to her abode in heaven. During her reign, she turned down marriages with other gods to marry Tzanse, a mortal who followed Nushen in battle and distinguished himself with his strict fidelity to the queen. She then gave birth to 100 children and assigned a different surname to each. Of the 100 children, 99 were males and one, Diyona, was female. Nushen also expanded upon the law of Nozama by introducing the concept of the Divine Circle, which provided the means for humanity to escape reincarnation and achieve salvation.

Angered by Nushen's marriage with Tzanse, Hoshen unleashed a great flood across Nozama. While Nushen's sons were unable to contain the flood, Diyona succeeded by building irrigation canals around the Nozama River. Impressed by this feat, Nushen appointed Diyona as her heir, ensuring the continuity of a dynasty of female monarchs known as the Matriarchy.

The Matriarchy lasted a total of 695 years and ended with the reign of Kungna, the last queen of a united Nozama. Kungna is described as a sinful ruler who basked in wealth and multiple husbands. Consequently, she was killed by her son Pokung, who declared himself king. However, this was met with a violent reaction from the Nan peoples, the descendants of Vanho who were conquered by Nozama, since some of Kungna's husbands whom Pokung killed belonged to the Nan. Led by Namona, the half-Nan daughter of Kungna, the Nan rebelled against Pokung and established the Kingdom of Namora in the southern Nozama River Valley. The rebellion ended in a victory for Nozama; Namona and all her daughters were killed in battle, depleting the royal house of potential female rulers. The kingdom was divided; Namona's sons became the rulers of Namora, while a dynasty of male rulers known as the Patriarchy ruled over Nozama.

Nozama continued to deteriorate under the Patriarchy. The last patriarch, Movang, forced the Nozamites to worship him as a god. In response to Movang's hubris, the gods gave King Venlan of Namora a mandate to overthrow Movang. Venlan then waged war on Nozama, killing Movang and most of the royal family. The entire Nozama River Valley was thus brought under the control of Namora.

The Book of Gods mentions that Riro, the youngest brother of Movang, survived the war and led over a thousand Nozamites out of the fallen kingdom and into the promised land of Txotai. However, this story does not appear in any of the original scriptures and is believed to have been concocted by the Jidu dynasty to bolster its own legitimacy.

Kanamora

Kanamora is the first Namorese dynasty whose existence is supported by archaeological evidence, although parts of its history are based on myth. The dynasty is best known for producing the scriptures that form the basis of Namorese mythology.

It is said that after overthrowing Movang, King Venlan consulted Tzikun on how to preserve morality such that his kingdom would not follow Nozama's route of division and eventual destruction. Attributing the fall of Nozama to deviation from the law of Nozama and the teachings of Nushen, Tzikun decided to record the feats of Songte, Nozama, and Nushen in writing so that all people may know the way to salvation.

Regional variants

Tuhaoese mythology

Tuhaoese mythology is closely related to Namorese mythology as a result of centuries of interactions between Tuhaoese people and Kannei Namorese. Many Tuhaoese myths feature major deities in Namorese mythology, although the deities are known by their Tuhaoese names instead of their Namorese names.

The goddess Yenfang (Bà Mỹ Hại) plays a prominent role in Tuhaoese mythology. Some myths about Yenfang that have entered mainstream Namorese mythology did not originate from either the original scriptures or the Book of Gods, but from Tuhaoese sources. In the Tuhaoese version of the Nushenshi, Yenfang tried to take Shenji Jolen out of his abode after hearing about a plot by Teyu to abduct him; however, the rescue failed as Yenfang was ambushed by demons and Shenji was killed in the skirmish. Before dying, Shenji entrusted his nephew, Shenji Huan, to Yenfang's care. Yenfang would later marry Shenji Huan and give birth to two sons, Ba and Sha. Ba became the progenitor of the Baites, a confederation of tribes in the Tung River Delta to whom the Tuhaoese trace their ancestry.

Hào, a descendant of Yenfang and the first monarch of Tuhao, is also mentioned in various Tuhaoese myths.

List of mythological figures

Immortals

Image Description
150x150px Diyona is the Goddess of Power and the second matriarch of Nozama. The only daughter of Nushen, she was appointed as Nushen's successor after controlling a great flood in the Nozama River Valley.
Hell's Judges, view 4, China, Henan Province, Min dynasty, 16th century, glazed earthenware - Royal Ontario Museum - DSC03697.JPG Harashen is the God of the Underworld and the sister of Murong. He, along with Murong and Vangmu, are the only surviving members of Taiyi's clan. Harashen was close to Songte but fell out of his favor after he had sex with Murong, who gave birth to Na — the first female mortal. He and Murong were consequently banished to the underworld, where they reside to this day.
Fuxi1.jpg Hoshen is the third eldest son of Songte and God of the Nozama River. He is the husband and sister of the sun goddess Rishen, and the father of Tin, the first male mortal to reside on Earth.
Hatyai-Hill-Kuan-Yin-Temple-Guan-Gong-Statute-Image-450x686.jpg Kashen is the second eldest son of Songte and the Guardian of the Celestial Palace, the abode of Songte and Murong. He is also worshipped as the patron god of the home who protects the home from evil spirits.
Daienin Kannon.JPG Ninshen is the Goddess of Peace. She is the youngest of the two daughters of Songte and Murong.
150x150px Nushen is the Goddess of Justice and the first matriarch of Nozama, the first Namorese kingdom. She is the eldest daughter of Songte and Vangmu, the sister of Vanho and Yenfang, the consort of Tzanse, and the mother of a hundred children, among them Diyona. A powerful warrior, Nushen united the peoples of the Nozama River Valley against Teyu, the demon king, and eventually killed him in battle, liberating the universe from his rule.
Tou Mu, Goddess of the North Star.jpg Rishen is the Goddess of the Sun, the second eldest daughter of Songte and Murong, consort of Hoshen, and the mother of Tin. She is commonly portrayed as riding a chariot across the world every day to deliver light.
Lao Tzu - Project Gutenberg eText 15250.jpg Sikun is the God of Time and the eldest son of Songte, born to Murong. He commands the sun and moon, determines the lifespan of mortal beings and their fates in the next life.
YuanshiTianzun.jpg Songte is the current God of the Universe. Songte rebelled against Taiyi after the former universal ruler tried to prevent him from marrying Murong. A colossal war that destroyed most of the universe ended in the overthrow of Taiyi. In his later years, Songte was briefly usurped by the demon king Teyu, but no longer had the strength to singlehandedly defeat Teyu. He was thus restored to the throne after Nushen killed Teyu.
J81929 Linfen 20140706-094434.58 36.05346,111.49097 TempleEmpereurYao.jpg Tzanse is the God of War and the consort of Nushen.
150x150px Murong is the former consort of Songte, the daughter of the former universal ruler Taiyi, and the mother of Sikun, Ninshen, Rishen, Hoshen, and Na. Songte and Murong wanted to marry each other but were obstructed by Taiyi, leading to a colossal war that saw Songte overthrow Taiyi and marry Murong. But after Murong had sex with Harashen and gave birth to Na, the first female mortal, Songte angrily renounced the marriage and banished Murong to the underworld along with Harashen. Murong's younger sister, Vangmu, succeeded her as Songte's consort.
Mazu.jpg Vangmu is the Goddess of Fertility and queen of the universe. The second consort of Songte, she replaced her older sister, Murong, after Murong was caught giving birth to an illegitimate child. She gave birth to three daughters — Nushen, Vanho, and Yenfang.
150x150px Vanho is the Goddess of the Ocean. She is the second eldest of Songte's daughters who were born to Vangmu, and the sister of Nushen and Yenfang. Vanho is traditionally regarded as the progenitor of the Nan peoples, from which the modern Minjianese, Tojavese, and Khao peoples claim descent.
150x150px Yenfang is the Goddess of the Tung River. She is the youngest of Songte's daughters who were born to Vangmu. After Teyu's death, Yenfang settled in the Tung River Delta, where she became chieftain of the Hao peoples. For that reason, she is venerated as the ancestor of the Tuhaoese people.

Humans

Image Description
Ping Sien Si - 072 Ji Zi (16137921534).jpg Ho was the eldest son of Na and Tin. One of the three culture heroes, he was tasked with communication between gods and mortals. Thus, he is widely regarded as the first priest, and his descendants are believed to have become scholars, priests, and sages.
后羿射日.png Ma is the youngest of the three sons of Na and Tin. He is the first hunter and is regarded as the ancestor of warriors on Earth, including the powerful Shenji clan.
Ping Sien Si - 065 Nu Wa Niang Niang (16140351273).jpg Na is the first female mortal on Earth. She is the illegitimate child of Murong, who gave birth to her by having sex with Harashen. It is said that Murong wanted Na to accompany her grandson, Tin, on Earth. But because Songte did not approve of Na's birth, he banished Murong to the underworld and stripped Na and Tin of their immortality. Na gave birth to the three culture heroes: Ho, Non, and Ma, and lived for 1,500 years before dying.
Fu Haocrop.jpg Namona is the daughter of Kungna, the last matriarch of Nozama, and a partial descendant of Vanho. She led a rebellion against Pokung, who usurped Kungna's throne, forming the breakaway kingdom of Namora. The rebellion ended when Namona and all her daughters were killed, leaving Namora in the hands of Namona's male descendants.
Shennong3.jpg Non is the second eldest son of Na and Tin. He represents agriculture and is considered to be the first farmer. His descendants were also farmers.
Tudi Gong (1).jpg Nozama is venerated as the ancestor of the Nozamites. A descendant of Ho, he won the allegiance of some descendants of Ho's brothers, Non and Ma.
150x150px Shenji Jolen is a warrior who descended from Ma. He tried to defy Teyu by shooting down the nine suns Teyu had released into the sky, but was turned into a crippled old man as punishment. He later became the mentor of the Three Sister-Goddesses and was executed by Teyu for enabling Nushen's rise.
Pangu3.jpg Tin is the first male mortal to reside on Earth. Originally a god, he was the son of Rishen and Hoshen. But after marrying Na, he was expelled by Songte from the clan of Kote gods and became a mortal. He lived for 1,100 years before dying.
孔子聖蹟圖.png Tzikun is a legendary sage who is believed to have descended from Ho. He is credited with inventing writing, which allowed the decrees of the gods to be preserved, rather than orally communicated, in the mortal world. Many epics about the gods, including the Nushenshi, are attributed to Tzikun.

Demons

Image Description
Ping Sien Si - 028 Pipa Jing (15513172384).jpg Nali is the sister of Teyu. She pretended to be the Queen of Nozama in an attempt to trick everyone into thinking that Nushen was not the legitimate queen, but was ultimately killed by Nushen in battle.
150x150px Teyu is the last king of the demon race and the archetypical villain in Namorese mythology. He is best known for having usurped Songte and ruled the universe until he was killed in a duel with Songte's daughter Nushen.