Kuni-umi (a myth about the birth of the land of Japan) (国産み)

Kuni-umi is a myth that tells us how the land of Japan was generated.

Izanagi and Izanami stood on the heavenly bridge, and created islands mixing chaos with a pike. Also, "Kojiki" (The Records of Ancient Matters) states that later these two gods gave birth to the islands. It is said that this Shima-umi (the birth of the islands) myth has many similarities to 'a great flood' which widely ranges from the southern part of China, the Okinawa Islands to Southeast Asia.

Furthermore, the tale of the Kuni-umi is followed by the tale of Kami-umi (the birth of gods).

This article will mention how Oyashima (the great islands; referring to Japan) were formed in Japanese myth.

Summary
Kojiki
According to Kojiki, Oyashima was born as follows.

The two gods of Izanagi and Izanami were ordered to complete the drifting land by Kotoamatsugami (literally, Separate heavenly god) and others. Kotoamatsugami and others gave the two gods Ame no nuboko (the heavenly jeweled spear). Izanagi and Izanami stood on the Ame no Ukihashi (the Heavenly floating bridge) and mixed the chaotic land with Ame no nuboko. Then something dripping from the pike piled up to be an island. This island is called Onogoro-jima Island.

The two gods stepped down onto Onogoro-jima Island, had a conversation, and got married. Quotations from Kojiki.

Izanagi
How is your body formed?'
How is your body formed?'
How is your body formed?'
Izanami
My body grew, but there is a part that did not grow (meaning the female genitalia).'
My body grew, but there is a part that did not grow (meaning the female genitalia).'
My body grew, but there is a part that did not grow (meaning the female genitalia).'
Izanagi
My body grew and it had a part that grew too much (meaning a penis).'
So I would like to make land inserting my part that grew too much into your part that did not grow enough.'
What do you think of making land?'
My body grew and it had a part that grew too much (meaning a penis).'
So I would like to make land inserting my part that grew too much into your part that did not grow enough.'
What do you think of making land?'

My body grew and it had a part that grew too much (meaning a penis).'

So I would like to make land inserting my part that grew too much into your part that did not grow enough.'

What do you think of making land?'

Then two gods began performing a sexual act. However, it was Izanami, a female god, who seduced Izanagi, a male god, before sexual intercourse, so a normal child was not born. The first born child was called Hiruko (literally, Leech Child; God of the Morning Sun) and the two gods swept the baby away on a boat made of reed. Next, Awashima was born. Hiruko and Awashima are not counted as children of Izanagi and Izanami.

The two gods who could not have normal children visited Kotoamatsugami to ask him what to do. Then the fortune-telling showed that it was not good for woman to ask a man to have sex. Therefore the two gods returned to Onogoro-jima Island, and this time the male god, Izanagi, asked her to have sex.

Shima-umi

Then the two gods generated islands that made up Oyashima. These islands are as follows in the order created.

Awaji no Ho no Sawake no Shima: Awaji-shima Island
Iyo no Futana no Shima: Shikoku Island
It had one body and four faces. The names of the faces are as follows.

Ehime: Iyo Province
Ihiyorihiko: Sanuki Province
Ogetsuhime: Awa Province (later it also appears as a god of food)
Takeyoriwake: Tosa Province
Oki no Mitsugo no Shima: Oki no shima Island
It was also called Ame no Oshikorowake.
Tsukushi no Shima: Kyushu Island
It had one body and four faces. The names of the faces are as follows.

Shirahiwake: Tsukushi Province
Toyohiwake: Toyo Province
Takehimukahitoyojihinewake: Hi Province
Takehiwake: Kumaso Province
Ikinoshima: Iki no shima Island
It was also called Amehitotsubashira.
Tsushima: Tsushima no shima Island
It was also called Ame no Sadeyorihime.
Sado no Shima: Sadoga-shima Island
Oyamato Toyoakitsushima: Honshu (the main island of Japan)
It was also called Amatsumisoratoyoakitsunewake.

Because the above eight islands were first generated, Japan was called Oyashima no kuni (The Land of Eight Great Islands). The two gods created another six islands continuously.

Kibi no Kojima: The Kojima Peninsula
It was also called Takehikatawake.
Azukijima: Shodo-shima Island
It was also called Onodehime.
Oshima: Suo-oshima Island
It was also called Otamaruwake.
Himejima: Himejima Village
It was also called Amehitotsune.
Chika no Shima: The Goto Islands
It was also called Ame no Oshio.
Futago no Shima: The Danjo Archipelago
It was also called Amefutaya.

Nihonshoki (Chronicles of Japan)
According to Nihonshoki, Izanagi and Izanami basically took action and moved the Kuni-umi forward voluntarily (Section four of the First Volume). Izanagi and Izanami were also called gods of yang and yin respectively, which suggests a strong influence of cosmic dual forces ideology.

The chronicle states that Izanagi and Izanami stood on the Ame no Ukihashi to mix chaotic land with the Ame no nuboko, just like they did in the Kojiki. At this time, something that fell from the spear piled up and an island was made. However, the other heavenly gods do not appear then.

Comparative table

It compared the order of the Kuni-umi in "Kojiki," "Nihonshoki," "Sendai Kujihongi" (Ancient Japanese History), "Tensho" (a chronological history of Japan), and "Uetsufumi" (Ancient Japanese Literature).