Mebege Creates an Egg

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(Fang, Pahouin/CAR, Congo, Gabon)

Mebege is God.

He was very lonely, with only Dibobia, a spider, hanging below him above the water. Neither Mebege nor any of his ancestors had more than one offspring. Dibobia, on his web situated between sky and sea, told Mebege that they were alone, they must create the earth. Agreeing, Mebege pulled hair from under his right arm, took substance from his brain, dipped into the sea, and took out a smooth pebble. He blew on them, and an egg was formed. He gave the egg to the spider, who lowered it to the sea. Mebege said that, when the egg became hot, the spider should tell him. When that occurred, Dibobia went to Mebege, who descended and put sperm on the egg. When the egg cracked, people were discovered: Zame ye Mebege (God) on the right and Nyingwan Mebege (the sister of God) on the left and in the center Nlona Mebege (the brother of God, a creator of evil). These were the three children of Mebege. Mebege and Dibobia withdrew, leaving the world in the control of Zame, who saw only sky and water—and a bit of raffia floating on the water. He fashioned a strand of raffia into a cross, then Mebege enabled him to understand that the cross stood for the four directions. He took hair from under his arms, took the lining of his brain, and rolled them into a ball. He blew on them, creating termites and worms. He dispersed them in all directions. With their droppings, they built up the earth. The earth grew in the sea, soft at first, then it hardened, and Zame, his brother, and his sister stepped off the eggshell. Zame planted the cross, which grew into a raffia tree. Then he created man.

Subjects: Religion.

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