Oceanic Mythologies: Australian Aborigine and Polynesian

Australian Creations and Floods

Who are the mythic heroes of Australia?

As in the case of Chinese mythology, it is difficult to differentiate deities from heroes. The closest we come to bona fide human mythic heroes among the Aborigines are culture heroes such as I’wai in Queensland and Warrunna in New South Wales. These figures perform the traditional role of the culture hero in teaching the people how to live by laws and traditions and how to survive. Bunjil in Victoria does all these things, but he is also a creator and, therefore, in some sense a deity. As a human-like culture hero, he once took shelter in a cave in Dreamtime and that cave remains a sacred place today.


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