The Anishinaabe Creation Story
Mother Earth is filled with beauty.
© Parks Canada
When the Earth was young, it had a family. The Moon is called Grandmother, and the Sun is called Grandfather. This family is basis of all creation in the universe. This family was created by Gitchi Manitou, the Creator. Earth is said to be a woman. She preceded man and her name is Mother Earth because all living things live from her gifts. Water is her life blood. It flows through her, nourishes her, and purifies her.
Mother Earth, was given Four Sacred Directions – North, South, East, and West. Each direction contributes a vital part of her wholeness. Each direction and all things on Mother Earth have physical powers and spiritual powers.
When she was young, Mother Earth was filled with beauty. The Creator sent his singers in the form of birds to carry the seeds of life to all of the Four Sacred Directions. Life was spread across the land. The Creator placed the swimming creatures in the water. He placed the crawling things and the four-legged animals on the land. He gave life to all the plants and insects of the world. All parts of life lived in harmony with each other on Mother Earth.
Gitchi Manitou took the four parts of Mother Earth and blew them into a Sacred Megis Shell. From the union of the Four Sacred Elements and his breath, man was created. It is said that Gitchi Manitou then lowered man to the Earth. Thus man was the last form of life to be placed on Earth. From this Original Man came the Anishinaabe people. This man was created in the image of Gitchi Manitou. Man was part of Mother Earth. He lived in brotherhood with all life that surrounded him.
Gaa-wnjiimgak Kina Gegoon Nishnaabe Aadsookaan
Pii we ki gaa-wshkiniigwang, gii-nngodoodemgiziimgad. “Nookmisnaan” n’di-zhnikaanaamin wedi Dbik-giizis. “Nmishoomsinaan” n’di-zhnikaanaamin wedi Giizis. Gaa-zhi-nwendiwaad gowenwag n’swi, mii gaa-wnjiimgak kina gegoon maawndi kiing. Mii we gaa-zhitood Gzhe-mnidoo. Kwewid we Mzakmig-kwe kidnaanwan. Jibwaa-wzhichgaaznid ninwan, gii-bi-yaa ntam we Mzakmig-kwe. Kina gaa-bmaadziwaad wgashktoonaawaa wii-bmaadziwaad Mzakmig-kwewan wnji. Wdoo-mskwiim, mii gaa-aawang nbi. Aabjijwan dash Mzakmig-kweng ji-bmaadzid gye wiin miinwaa ji-biinaabaawnind.
Niiwin Nike – Giiwednong, Zhaawnong, Waabnong, miinwaa Nngaabiihnong – gii-miinaa Mzakmig-kwe. Kina go niwenwan wnaadmaagnan we Mzakmig-kwe ji-mziwezid. Kina go niwenwan Niiwin Nike miinwaa kina go gegoon maawndi Mzakmig-kweng gaa-teg, mshkawiimgadoon miinwaa mmaandaawnoon.
Pii gaa-wshkayhaawid Mzakmig-kwe, aapji gii-mnwaabminaagzi. Gaa-n’gamwaajin, bneshiinying zhinaagzinid, wgii-maajiindmawaan Gzhe-mnidoo bmaadziiwmiinkaanan wii-bmiwjigaadeg kina nngoji Niiwin Nike. Bmaadziwin dash gii-zswewebnigaade kina nngoji maawndi kiing. Gaa-ntaawaadgewaajin nbiing wgii-saan Gzhe-mnidoo. Gaa-bbaamaandwewaajin miinwaa gaa-niiwgaadewaajin gidkamig wgii-saan Gzhe-mnidoo. Bmaadziwin wgii-miinaan Gzhe-mnidoo kina go gaa-zaagkiiwaajin miinwaa kina go mnidooshan maawndi kiing gaa-yaawaajin. Kina go bmaadziwin, gaa-zhi-aawang gaa-aawang, aapji go weweni gii-wiidnokiindiimgadoon maawndi Mzakmig-kweng.
Gaa-zhi-aawnijin gaa-aawnijin Mzakmig-kwewan, niwenwan niiwin gegoon, wgii-boodoodaanan Gzhe-mnidoo. Biinji-Miigis dash gii-bgamaasnoon niwenwan niiwin gegoon. Wenji-maawnjihdiimgakin niwenwan niiwin gegoon miinwaa wenji-nesenid Gzhe-mnidoo, gii-zhichgaazo nini. Kidnaanwan gii-niisnind dash nini maawndi gidkamig. Nini dash mii we shkwaaj gaa-bmaadzid gii-sind maawndi Mzakmig-kweng. Mii we Ntam Nishnaabe. Mii gaa-wnjiiyaang kina go Nishnaabeg. Gzhe-mnidoong wii-zhinaagzid gii-zhi-wzhihaa Ntam Nishnaabe. Maamwi go gii-mno-bmaadziwag maawndi Mzakmig-kweng we nini miinwaa kina gaa-bmaadziwaad gye wiinwaa.