Canaanite Creation Myth
Canaanite Creation from Cosmic Egg
The creation epic, of world and humans, repeats in different versions in many cultures it explains the origins of the world and the creation of man. It is always formulated as a noble story befitting such a grandiose event as the beautiful creation quote, of Canaanite Creation, described here. Many creation stories exist in the world and one of them the Cosmic Egg represents creation from an egg that appears in Egypt and Canaan.
Canaan, the closest culture to the people of Israel had such a myth, probably influenced by Egyptian mythology, engraved in Negev Desert rock art. The array of symbols in this rock art fits the creation stages as told by Dameskios, a Syrian-born philosopher from the fifth century AD, based on the writing of Mochus (13th century BC) the Phoenician proto-philosopher (Noga&Guy Darshan – Canaanite Mythology).
“First was the upper air and lower air, these two were the first and from them, God World (Olamos) was created, he was the limit of reason. Saying which, from the merger itself, created Kushar, the God of Wisdom, and then created the egg. Kushar has the opening power given to understanding, he creates the initial separation in nature which is completely inseparable. After the formation of top and bottom air incurred at one end and two spirits created mid, the wind of west and south, and there are who consider these winds previous to God of the World. Kushar is the first step that can be understood and the egg is considered a heaven, because they say that when it was divided into two halves it created the heaven and earth. “
Rock Art clues
This rock art deciphering is not straightforward and at first sight, the scene baffles the viewer. The engraved symbols seem unrelated and therefore the storyline seems obscure. However, there are clues that unfold the meaning of this scene. For example, the circles have a special and repeated meaning in many rock art, either sun or an egg (like the creation story presented in the Cosmic Egg Creation article). The relative sizes of the circles, big and small, and their relative heights suggested that they represent different things.
An additional hint in this image came from the symbol that resembles a picture of Egyptian milk tree Fig.2. It shows how the Egyptians envisioned the feedings’ or creating hands of God similar to the symbol, in this myth, called Olamus that creates Kushar. With three decoded symbols the connection between them clears, which also fits exactly the creation steps in the Canaanite Creation version, as seen in Fig.1.
Deciphering the rock art
This rock art shown in Fig.1 matches the Canaanite Creation sequence that contains five motifs, which fits exactly the rock art symbols progressing from left to right as follows:
- First was the upper air and lower air
- from them God World (Olamos) was created
- the merger itself, created Kushar , the God of Wisdom
- and the egg is considered a heaven
- it was divided into two halves it created the heaven and earth
The leftmost symbol represents the upper air and lower air, a wavy line separates the top from the bottom. Next shown the working god with hands only, work action gesture inspired by the Egyptian Milk Tree. He creates Kushar, the god of wisdom, who creates the egg the small circle beneath him. In turn, the heavens and earth are created from the egg. The big circle (the sun) and the “camel’s” hump (the sky) represent heaven and the camel body represents earth and the dog underneath represents the underworld.
More deciphering, in a new book Rock Art in Israel, available online.
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