Sa Na Duniya Supports the Earth on Its Horn

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(Hausa/Niger, Nigeria)

Sa Na Duniya is the Bull of the World.

The earth is said to be a female, supported on one of the horns of the Sa Na Duniya, Bull of the World, and when he gets tired holding it on one, he tosses it to the other, and it is this that makes the earth quake. It is flat like a plate, divided in two by a wall, and it meets the sky.

The stars were once human beings. Long ago, some Maguzawa boys began to throw stones at an old woman, the world, who was sweeping the ground in front of her house, and she was annoyed by this. So she gave them her calabash of rubbish to empty, and immediately after they began to rise in the air, and at last they reached the sky. When they arrived there, God told them to remain, and so they have been there ever since.

In another version of this myth, the stars were always stars, but were once quite near the earth, being moved up above by the old woman because the boys were throwing stones at them.

When stars fall, it shows that they are fighting among themselves; some are running away and are being killed. They foretell battles upon earth, because they thus induce warfare among human beings. Shooting stars are thrown by angels at demons that have been prying into the secrets of paradise to tempt the inhabitants.

Subjects: Religion.

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