For months while I recovered from the virus, the radius of my life consisted of a micro migration between the bed and a chair.
At night, as I slipped between states of sleeping and awake, a collection of stars known here as ‘Orion’, spread themselves across the sky.
As I sat, watching the days and nights pass, I began searching the stars’ stories. Within the thousands that exist, a theme of commonality rose to the fore; sharing that regardless of our ancestors’ place on the globe, when they looked up at this set of stars, they saw the shape of a warrior and a story of how this warrior got there.
To name just a few of many stories, In Hungarian mythology, the stars are seen as the hunter Nimrod. In China, peoples know the constellation as their great hunter and warrior, Shen. The Hittites (a Bronze Age people of Anatolia, present-day Turkey) saw their mythical hunter, Aqhat. The Sumerians (southern Iraq) saw the story of Gilgamesh who battled the bull of heaven. The Egyptians associated it with Osiris, a powerful god. The Australian Aboriginals of the Great Victoria Desert know the stars as the hunter, Nyeeruna. The Seri people of northwestern Mexico, call the three stars which create the ‘belt’, Hapj (a name which means ‘hunter’).
As I slowly became well again, I found hope in the knowledge that despite differences in culture, language, environment and cosmology – in these stars (and through shared grounding in sacred ecology) our ancestors saw each other as well.