Page:Myth, Ritual, and Religion (Volume 1).djvu/197

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grasshopper. Though he seems at least as "chimerical a beast" as the Aryan creative boar, the "mighty big hare" of the Algonkins, the large spider who made the world in the opinion of the Gold Coast people, or the eagle of the Australians, yet the insect-god, like the others, has achieved moral qualities and is addressed in prayer. He is called Cagn. "Cagn made all things and we pray to him," said Qing. "Coti is the wife of Cagn." Qing did not know where they came from; "perhaps with the men who brought the sun." The fact is, Qing "did not dance that dance," that is, was not one of the Bushmen initiated into the more esoteric mysteries of Cagn. Among the Bushmen, as among the Greeks, there is "no religious mystery without dancing." Qing was not very consistent. He said Cagn gave orders and caused all things to appear and to be made, sun, moon, stars, wind, mountains, animals, and this, of course, is a comparatively lofty theory of creation. Elsewhere it seems that Cagn did not so much create as manufacture the objects in nature. In his early day "the snakes were also men." Cagn struck snakes with his staff and turned them into men, as Zeus, in the Æginetan myth, did with ants. He also turned offending men into baboons. On the whole, then, this uninitiated Bushman, Qing, represented creation as chiefly the work of a benevolent grasshopper, and fully recognised the fact that men and animals have natures almost interchangeable.

Another Bushman myth of the origin of things is that "Morimo, as well as man, with all the different species of animals, came out of a cave or hole in the