Creation Myths and the Dawning of the Universe

 

“Creation of the universe,” Guyart des Moulins, Bible historiale, Paris c. 1415 (BL, Additional 18856, fol. 5v)

Many myths about creation reached us from ancient Sumerians up to the present day, preserved on reliefs, stone tablets, pictures and epic legends.

According to what was written in Sumer (3000 BC) and the epic of Gilgamesh, which is one of the oldest sources, the universe and God existed since the beginning of time. The God of wisdom Enki created the rivers Tigris and the Euphrates, thus created the waterbeds, and made the water flow from the mountains to these rivers. Then he created fish and bird species which filled the waters to feed human beings. He established the order of the worlds wherein the creatures would dwell. Chaos has been cleared and at the end of this work the world started to spin.

In Greek mythology, initially there was only chaos, emptiness and darkness. At first, Gaea (the world), the primordial substance shaped by light and love was formed. Uranus then created the sky and the stars followed by the creation of men and demigods.

According to the ancient Persian philosophy (Suhrawardi, 1153-1191), creation began when the sublime beam of light blazed across the darkness and an explosion took place instantaneously. In the dark that originally existed, the particles were moving astray. The light emitted from the source gave shape and existence to the particles it has illuminated. As they were given life and were coming into being, so were the species created, and they began to move. The world began to rotate onsetting the cycle of life. The archangel Gabriel has always been the archetype humans and guardian angel of humanity. Its is recited that, life began with the sound of Gabriel’s wings which were wide enough to cover the world.

In European philosophy, light is attributed to the Source and creation; The land of “Morgenland” in German literature represents the east with legendary light, the origin of man and his real home. The angels of Arch are also found in Morgenland, that is, in the east – where pure light spreads. It is recited that in the beginning of time, the universe has dawned from the east.

What is written here is just a few of the many known creation stories. In addition to the myths, there are scientific findings of the astronomers and physicists on the formation of the universe.Renowned physics and astronomy professor Marcelo Gleiser, whose research investigates questions such as how the universe was created, what happened before the big bang, how complex systems in nature work, writes in his book “The Dancing Universe“, in which he believes that today’s science is not in contradiction with the “lore” in his old expression:

The myths created by ancient beliefs contain answers to the origin of the universe – such that modern cosmological theories have found similar answers. This does not mean that modern science rediscovered ancient knowledge, but the universality in the thoughts produced about the question of what is the source of everything is also a remarkable finding. Language is different, symbols are different, but ideas are essentially the same …

Mysticism plays a key role in the creative process of past physicists, if understood as the form of irresistible attraction to the unknown. If we neglect this fact, our eyes will not see history and we will miss a very important part of science. In this way, we must look at the creation of myths to understand the roots of rational mysticism.

 

Duygu Bruce
April 5, 2020



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