The Descent of Manaul

A Podcast episode on The Descent of Manaul
The myth as recorded in Outline of Philippine Mythology (1969)
Long before the earth was created, there was only the boundless gray sky and an endless blue sea. There was no sun, no moon, no star. All was darkness and everywhere there was only water and space. Then one day, a bird named Manaul appeared.

Manaul was believed to be the favorite pet of the Tubluck Lawi lord and master of Singgit, highest realm heaven.

One day, while Tubluck Lawi was away, he decided to explore the universe alone. Flying over the boundless space made Manaul tired. However, there was no place to rest. This worried Manaul horribly, so he devised a means to acquire a place to rest.

He flew upward and told the sky that the sea did not like the sky’s face, and that it would better stop looking down. This made the sky very angry. Then Manaul went downward and told the sea that the sky said the sea had a funny face. This made the sea foam with anger.

War between the two followed. The sea tossed its turbulent waves upward in an effort to tear the sky; in turn, the sky released, with fury, its lightning and thunder in a mad struggle to destroy the sea. The war went on for many years. Nobody knew how long it lasted.

However, it was said that the sky became weary and it appealed to Manaul for help. It entreated so hard that finally, Manaul took pity on it.

He flew downward and clawed from the ocean bed huge pieces of rocks. He lifted these to the air and cast them below. This he did in so many places. The weight of the rocks pinned the waves of the sea down, thus ending the fight.

The rocks stayed put and became the continents and islands of the world.
Jocano, F. L. (1969). Outline of Philippine Mythology. Centro Escolar Univ. Research and Development Center.

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