Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Creation Stories

In the Beginning God created the Heavens and the Earth.  And the Earth was without form, and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep.  And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.  And God said, "Let there be Light: and there was Light.  And God saw the Light, that it was good: and God divided the Light from the Darkness.  And God called the Light Day, and the Darkness he called Night.  And the evening and the morning were the first day.  (1 Genesis)

And Lady Wisdom speaks of creation:

"The Lord created me at the beginning of his work, the first of his acts of old.  Ages ago I was set up, at the first, before the beginning of the Earth.  When there were no depths I was brought forth, when there were no springs abounding with water.  Before the Mountains had been shaped, before the hills, I was brought forth; before he had made the Earth with its fields, or the first of the dust of the world.

When he established the heavens, I was there, when he drew a circle on the face of the deep, when he made firm the skies above, when he established the fountains of the deep, when he assigned to the sea its limit, so that the waters might not transgress his command, when he marked out the foundations of the Earth, then I was beside him, like a master workman; and I was daily his delight, rejoicing before him always, rejoicing in his inhabited world and delighting in the children of humanity."  Proverbs 8:22-31)

And a third creation myth - from ancient Greece:

"In the beginning, Eurynome, the Goddess of All Things, rose naked from Chaos, but found nothing substantial for her feet to rest upon, and therefore divided the sea from the sky, dancing lonely upon its waves,  She danced towards the south, and the wind set in motion behind her seemed something new and apart with which to begin a work of creation.  Wheeling about, she caught hold of this north wind, rubbed it between her hands, and behold! the great serpent Ophion.  Eurynome danced to warm herself, wildly and more wildly, until Ophion, grown lustful, coiled about those divine limbs and was moved to couple with her.  Now, the North Wind, who is also called Boreas, fertilizes; which is why mares often turn their hind-quarters to the wind and breed foals without aid of a stallion.  So Eurynome was likewise got with child.

Next she assumed the form of a dove, brooding on the waves and in due process of time, laid the Universal Egg.  At her bidding, Ophion coiled seven times about this egg, until it hatched and split in two.  Out tumbled all the things that exist, her children: Sun, Moon, planets, Stars, the Earth with its mountains and rivers, its trees, herbs and living creatures.

Eurynome and Ophion made their home upon Mount Olympus, where he vexed her by claiming to be the author of the Universe, Forthwith she bruised his head with her heel, kicked out his teeth, and banished him to the dark caves below the Earth."  (Greek Myths, Robert Graves)

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