盤古傳說   The Legend of Pangu

所屬名錄: 第二批國家級名錄

編號: I-57

申報地區或單位: 河南省桐柏縣、泌陽縣 

Inscribed list: National List, Second Batch

Inventory no.: I-57

Nominating unit(s): Henan Province, Tongbai County, BiYang County

盤古傳說講述了中國文化對宇宙創造的解說,此傳説早已被記載在古代文獻中,並廣為人知。

 

最為人熟悉的為盤古開天闢地的故事。在很久以前,宇宙被描繪成一隻大雞蛋,裡面只有混沌,沒有空氣、土地和生命。然後,人類的祖宗盤古從蛋中未知的地方誕生,並休眠了18000年。有一天,他醒來之後發現自己在蛋中感到不舒服,於是他拿起一把斧頭並揮動它,把雞蛋砍了。升上去的物質就成為天,沉下去的物質則成土地。

 

因為盤古擔心天地會再度合併,於是他用其手臂去把它們撐開,讓更多光線照射大地。他站直把天往上推,把強壯的身驅當為了一條支柱,而地亦隨時流逝而往下沉。當天與地的距離愈遠,盤古的身高亦到了頂點,以比支撐天與地。

 

過了幾千年後,天與地的根基變得穩定,並不會再合併。用盡最後一切力量後,盤古倒在地上長眠。

 

臨終前,他呼出的氣成了風雲,發出的聲音成了雷電。左眼成了太陽,右眼成了月亮。星星與雨點則是由他的鬍子化成。身軀變為山嶽,血液化成河流。之後,盤古把自己的血管化成道路,讓筋肉化成田野。頭髮化為花草等植物,皮膚成為了森林,他亦把骨骼與牙齒轉為礦物及寶石。他的付出創造了我們所知的世界。

 

最早有關盤古傳說的記載可在三國時代的《三五曆記》,作者為徐整。在文中,他亦提及了大禹與工人在治水其間修築了一座盤古廟。那廟後來在元明兩朝經歷修葺,但在清朝時期受洪水侵襲,而後亦經歷了重修及搬遷,但廟亦在後來受到多次毀壞及重建。直至近年,新的盤古廟堂在中國不同地區建成,包括河北。

 

其他有引述三國時期關於盤古傳說的文獻包括唐代的《藝文類聚》及宋代的《太平御覽》,而明代文獻《五運歷年記》則寫了盤古為龍首蛇身。

 

桐柏縣亦被認為是盤古文化的發源地。桐柏版本的盤古像有一對龍角在頭上,與《五運歴年記》的龍首蛇身盤古近似。桐柏居民會在正月初一停止工作,直到初十後才恢復,以示對盤古的尊敬,而正月初一亦是盤古的生辰。居民亦稱盤古為「爺」,不是「王」或「皇」。民俗學者亦發現當地居民亦能清楚記憶其他盤古傳說。

The Legend of Pangu is a creation myth of the Chinese culture, and tells how the giant Pangu created heaven and earth.

 

As the story goes, a long time ago, the universe was a giant egg. Inside was chaos, with no air, life, or land. Pangu was born within the egg, and remained dormant for 18,000 years.  The opposing principles of Yin and Yang became balanced during that time, and Pangu awoke.  Feeling trapped within the egg, he took an axe and started chopping things apart. Elements that rose to the air would become the sky, and those that sunk to the bottom would form the earth.  

 

Feeling unsatisfied and worried that the sky and earth may combine again, Pangu decided to use his arms to separate them further for more light to be shed on earth. Using his strong body, he acted as a pillar by standing and pushing the skies and ground further apart, around 10 feet per day.

 

In some versions, Pangu died after a thousand years, and in others, after another 19,000 years.  With the last ounce of energy used, Pangu collapsed to his eternal sleep. His last breath created clouds and winds, his final voice turned into thunder. The sun was created from his left eye while the other one formed the moon, stars and rain were created from his beard and his sweat respectively. While his body formed the mountains and peaks, his blood turned into rivers and seas. Roads and paths were formed out of his arteries and veins, as his muscles turned into fields. His hair contributed the creation of flora and fauna, his skin became forestry, and his bones and teeth became precious minerals and gems.

 

The earliest record of the Legend of Pangu was detailed in the Three Kingdoms period literature, Sanwu Liji (三五曆記), written by Xu Zheng (徐整). In the text, Xu also mentions that a temple dedicated to Pangu was constructed by Yu the Great and his workers, during their work to control the frequent floods that plagued the country. The temple was later renovated in the Yuan Dynasty and Ming Dynasty, but was destroyed in a flood during the Qing Dynasty. The temple was relocated and reconstructed, but continued to undergo multiple destructions and reconstructions until recent years. Today, several temples dedicated to Pangu have been built in China.

 

Other literature that cite the Three Kingdoms text on Pangu include Yiwen Leiju (藝文類聚) from the Tang Dynasty, and Taiping Yulan (太平御覽) from the Song Dynasty. Another Tang dynasty literature, Wuyunli Nianji (五運歷年記) included a variant of the legend, describing Pangu as a creature with a dragon’s head and a snake’s body.

 

Tongbai County of Henan is considered as the origin of the Pangu culture. The Tongbai version of a Pangu statue has a pair of dragon antlers on its head, matching the legend variant that describes Pangu as a creature with a dragon head. Residents in Tongbai refrain from working from the first day of the first lunar month until after the tenth day, as a sign of respect to Pangu, whose birthday is on the first day of the year. They also refer to him as Grandpa Pangu instead of King or Emperor Pangu. Folklorists have also discovered that the residents of Tongbai County have created other legends about Pangu, details of which most locals are able to recall.

 

Interestingly, the Henan version of Pangu legends depict Pangu as not only the creator, but also as a tribal leader. He married his sister and later had 8 sons, who were named after the directions of a compass. After the death of their sons, the couple created humans using soil, eventually forming a small tribe in the mountains named “PanguShan” (Mount Pangu), located at the Biyang County of Henan.

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800px-Pangu.jpg

Image of Pangu from Sancai Tuhui