MARCH 18, 2011 BY HAROLD CAREY JR
Nihaltsoh – The Navajo Yellow World
Creation Story Poster- Ni’hodilhil First World
Illustrations by Theresa Breznau.
© 2013 Heritage Language Resource Center. All rights reserved
To purchase see bottom of page.
On the wands, the beings passed into the Third World. Blue Bird was the first to come through. He found the world was yellow. After Blue Bird, First Man, First Woman, Coyote and one of the insects came. After that, the other beings entered the Yellow World.
The Yellow World was large. Many new things were there. A great river crossed this land from north to south. It was the Female River.
There was another river crossing it from east to west, it was the Male River. This Male River flowed through the Female River and on and the name of this place is tqoalna’osdli, the Crossing of the waters.
Animals in the Yellow world
i. Water Monster
Others in the Yellow World
1. Water Monster
2. Turquoise Boy
3. While Shell Woman
5. Rivers that Cross
6. Separation of Sexes
In this world there were six mountains. These are the mountains that are important to Navajos today.
The Four Sacred Mountains
In the East was Blanco Peak Sisnaajinii, the Standing Black Sash. Its ceremonial name is Yolgaidzil, the Dawn or White Shell Mountain.
In the South stood Mount Taylor Tsoodzil, the Great Mountain, also called Mountain Tongue. Its ceremonial name is Yodoltizhidzil, the Blue Bead or Turquoise Mountain.
In the West stood the San Francisco Peaks Dook’oslid, Its ceremonial name is Dichi’li dzil, the Abalone Shell Mountain.
In the North stood the La Plata Mountains Debe’ntsa, Many Sheep Mountain.
Its ceremonial name is Bash’zliinidzil. Obsidian Mountain.
Other Sacred Mountains
ln the middle was Huerfano Mesa. Dzilna’odili, the Upper Mountain. It was very sacred, and its name means also the Center Place, and the people moved around it. Its ceremonial name is Ntl’isdzil. Precious Stone or Banded Rock Mountain.
Near this was a cone-shaped mountain called Gobernador Knob, called Chori’i or Dzil na’odilicholi, and it was also a sacred mountain.
Different animals lived around these mountains. Squirrel, Chipmunk, Turkey, Deer, Snake and Lizard lived there. But these animals looked different from animals we see today. They were spirit beings.
The beings were happy in the Yellow World. Then one day something happened. Coyote took Water Monster’s baby. Water Monster was very angry. He was so angry that he decided to make it rain. lt rained and rained. The water rose higher and higher.
Then the water began to flood. The beings did not know where to go to escape the flood. First Man tried to help them. He told them to come to Blanco Peak. But the water kept rising. It rose higher than the mountain.
First Man wondered what to do. He planted a cedar tree. But this did not grow higher than the water. He planted a pine tree. But the pine tree was too short. He planted a male reed. The reed was still too short. Finally, First Man planted a female reed. This reed grew to the sky.
The beings climbed onto the reed. They started to climb up. When they got to the top, they found another world. This was the Fourth, White World. This is the place where all beings live today.