Cherokee Life Lessons

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Final Paper We all grew up hearing stories, reading books, and learning lessons about the world around us. Storytelling is a big part of many cultures, but is a significant part of the Cherokee way of life. These stories spread wide in variety including: childhood experiences, life lessons, explanations, and stories of the beginning; there are far too many types to name. Teuton states in his introduction that stories “articulate Cherokee tradition,” and “are fundamental to a construction of Cherokee selfhood and cultural belonging.” The further I got in this book, I found those statements to be quite apparent. I also, however, compare and contrast and see similar connections to the stories I heard growing up. Storytelling can often give a…show more content…
Yet, it also has similarities to the story of Adam and Eve in the Bible. The story tells about how long ago, the animals did not look like they do in modern times. The bear was small, the eagle was a low flyer, the skunk did not have a repulsive smell, and the rabbit did not have long ears, a tail, or long legs. One day the creator was looking down and saw how nice everyone was being nice and helpful to one another. This pleased the creator, and he decided to grant them each a wish (Teuton, 155). All of the animals lined up to get their wishes, and the line was for quite a long distance. He gave the bear his strength and power, the eagle his majestic high flight, and the skunk his repulsive stench (Teuton, 156). Next was the rabbit, the creator had asked all of the other animals not to look, because he did not want them to see what he was going to do to the rabbit. He yanked the short ears out and when the ears stretched out the tail came in creating the long ears and the cotton tail. He then grabbed the legs and yanked. Well the owl did not follow directions and turned his head around and looked. He was astonished at what had happened and the creator left him that way, and that is the explanation for the owl’s huge eyes. After the owl broke the rules the Creator left and granted no more wishes, for he was upset. This left the rabbit with only long back legs and he asked the creator to stretch out his front leg. The Creator refused and said he would come back someday when the animals of the world are nice to each other again (Teuton, 160). This reminded me of the story of Adam and eve, because the owl and eve both broke the law of their God and brought unfortunate things upon the generations to

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