Story and Images by Donavan Damarlane
“That’s what literature is. It is the people who went before us, tapping out the messages from the past, from beyond the grave, trying to tell us about life and death.”— Connie Willis.
It is unpredictable and surprising. Nan Madol is a historical site that has many legends and myths. No one can really live to tell the truth.
For people who are curious, Nan Madol is an amazing place to visit and even learn about.
Trip to Nan Madol
Well as for me, I have been to Nan Madol and it is an astounding trip. Everything about that place is amazing and mysterious. Stories about this place are rarely connected and special. I believe that Nan Madol is the foundation of our culture and from generation to generation, we will still be curious of what really happened. The sight of Nan Madol was like nothing I’ve ever seen in my life, as a Pohnpeian it has becomes an inspiration.
This masterpiece will forever be the reason I stand proud as a Pohnpeian. And as the saying goes, “your past is always your past. Even if you forget it, it remembers you.”
“Pwirakih mwehi pwahpwa”
CREATION OF NAN MADOL
One of those legends of Pohnpei is about the founding fathers of the Nan Madol Ruins. Once upon a time, there were two twin sorcerers named Olosohpa and Olosihpa that came from the west (Katau Peidi) in search for the best spot to build a sacred altar to worship to their gods. Their first destination was (Sou Kes) — separated –that today is called Sokehs.
However their first attempt to creating an altar was a big failure, and the same goes for the spots they picked after that. So one day they decided to pray to their gods to help them pick out the best spot for them to build their sacred altar. Olosohpa and Olosihpa went up to the highest spot on the island to look for the sign and saw a light straight from heaven to the reef which is called Sounahleng “Reef of Heaven”.
Then the brothers went down and head for Temwen Island in Madolenihmw and built Nan Madol into different dimensions which connect the part of the sea to the land. They piled up massive rocks forming many kinds of islets. In creating Nan Madol, Olosohpa died and Olosihpa claims the rightful leader and the first Saudeleur (king) that ruled Pohnpei.
So, that’s where everything was started and until today, some theories have concluded facts about this sacred place that it is a worshiping altar between the god of the sea and the land.
But this is just one of those theories.
As a Pohnpeian, Nan Madol is very special to me because it’s the place where our culture derives from and I will respect it at all times. Actually I am amazed by Nan Madol because of it mysterious stories.