Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Asian history-Korea(Creation legend)

The Dan-kun Wang Kum (Dan-kun, the noble King)
The proper history of Korea starts from the old stone age where the first legend of the creation of Korea takes place.
The legend goes like this:
Once upon a time, when the tigers used to smoke(it's an expression in Korea for refering 'long time ago'), the son of the Almighty God spotted a land that looked good. he pleaded to his father the Almighty God to let him go down to the Earth to rule and teach people. The Almighty God allowed his son to go, along with his 3 followers; the god of the wind, god of the cloud, and the god of the rain.
The son of the Almighty God, Hwan-ung, became the king of the uncolonized people and taught them how to live in a more organized society.
One day, a bear and a tiger came to Hwan-ung and asked "Please, Please King Hwan-ung, we always wanted to become a human. Please change us to a human form."
After thinking a while, Hwan-ung gave the bear and the tiger garlic and wormwood and replied, "If you stay in a cave without coming out at all for 100 days and only eat these garlic and wormwood during that period, I will change you to a human."
The bear and the tiger promised they will do so and went in to the cave.

After weeks and weeks, the tiger began to get tired of waiting so long without any hint of light and just eating bitter foods. Finally, even though the bear tried persuade him back, the tiger ran out to the fresh world and departured.

The bear now became even more lonely, but still endured the pain and waited.

On the 100th day, the bear came out of the cave and surprisingly found out that it was not a bear anymore. The bear transformed into a beautiful woman, and Hwan-ung named her Ung-nyo, which means 'bear woman' in Korean. Although the tiger was jealous about the Ung-nyo's transformation, he could not do anything about it.

Later Hwan-ung and Ung-nyo married and had a son, Dan-kun, who eventually becomes the first king in the real Korean History.
I think this legend is based on real events. They for example, the part about bear turning into a woman is just symbolizing an event in history like maybe forming of another country-just my guess.

1 comment:

Alisha Stafford Feitosa said...

Great story--and I love the picture. Now I just want to know what YOU think of the story. Do you have any special memories or experiences related to this story? Try to add a bit of your own thoughts to each of your posts.