P is for Phya In vs. Gourd

We are pleased to participate in the A to Z Blog Challenge (http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/). The Story Crossroads theme for this year is Finding Resilience & Strength through Traditional Tales.

Phya In –

From Laos

Laos is in between Thailand and Vietnam. There are at least 7.4 million people that live here. Thick forests are everywhere and the terrain is rocky. Those trees get plenty of rain from May to October every year. Some people say there are three seasons: rainy, cool, and hot. Knowing this, it can be easy to imagine a gourd (or vine) growing so big to block out the sun. Right? Of course!

50-word-or-less summary:

Earth dark because giant gourd blocked out sun. The Great God, Phya In, ordered all gods to make holes in gourd. Hard! Heated iron bar. People of darker complexion came. Axe. People of lighter complexion came. People came from same gourd. More holes. Then animals. More holes. Jewels. Honor all.

Finding the Story: 

Book “Lao Folktales” – here

The Giant Vine – another version (vine versus gourd) – here

Religion in Laos – here

Other Laos stories – here

Finding Resilience & Strength:

It took great effort for those holes to be formed in the giant gourd. That took strength and resilience right there. Having all those gods help each other and organize in such a manner made it successful.

What was even more strong? That people of all colors could be found worthy and wonderful. Having that kind of respect naturally builds strength and resilience.

Here’s an academic study from Sage Journals called “Revisiting ‘resilience’ in light of racism, ‘othering,’ and resistance” to explore mental health strategies.

Please share thoughts in the comments. While you enjoy this blog, Story Crossroads has year-round offerings. See quick list of programs here.

As for our past A to Z Challenges…

While you enjoy this blog, Story Crossroads has been resilient and strong during these past years and looks forward to the next hybrid summit & festival on May 8-11, 2023. We would be honored for you to join us. Explore the schedule and register here: http://www.storycrossroads.org/Festival

Thanks to funding from National Endowment for the Arts; National Endowment for the Humanities; Western States Arts Federation; Utah Division of Arts and Museums/Utah Legislature; Utah Humanities; City of Murray; Zoo, Arts & Parks (ZAP) of Salt Lake County; Salt Lake City Arts Council; Ashton Family Foundation

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Story Crossroads fosters creative and compassionate communities through the art of storytelling. 501(c)(3)

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