Cosmic Egg Creation
Cosmic Egg Creation in Rock Art, Negev Desert.
Astronomy, archaeology, and ancient myths all attempted to explain the mystery of creation. Although no one witnessed the act of creation, multiple versions exist in ancient literary sources as if many wise people had witnessed it. The creation accounts originated in different cultures but they share similar elements and over time they even diffused into each other. In the region of Egypt, in Hermopolis a provincial capital in Old Kingdom 2500BC, and Canaan (see Canaanite Creation), a myth circulated that creation spontaneously occurred from a Cosmic Egg, an ancient logic since the egg contains all the ingredients needed to create new life. Now, we can observe this recorded act of Creation in rock art engravings left for us from biblical time.
Creation Myth Symbols
Research shows that many cosmogenic myths describe that creation emerges from chaos transformed into order by the godly powers when they intervene to form life. Although not stated, the creation described in these myths occurs with the fusion of life’s main elements: wind, earth, and water, all vital ingredients needed to sustain life. Before creation was initiated, chaos ruled the world and after the intervention of godly forces, an order formed that created the world. The Bible describes the conditions before creation:
Genesis 1-2:” darkness was over the deep, and the God Wind was hovering over the face of waters“.
Darkness means the lower world and wind belongs to the upper world. In this passage, creation occurs when the upper and lower forces, or gods, intertwine. A similar idea appears in Sumer’s epic story:
Enuma Elish: “When in the height heaven was not named, And the earth beneath did not yet bear a name, And the primeval Apsu, who begat them, And chaos, Tiamat, the mother of them both,- Their waters were mingled together...”.
A Canaanite creation version echoes the same idea:
Canaan: “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”.
Creation Rock Art deciphering
We have many descriptions of creations recorded in the text, but early visual scenes are rare. The creation scene in Fig.1 contains all the elements mentioned that play a central role in this epic myth. It includes the Godly Wind, Earth, and Water. The symbols descriptions in this rock art, from left to right: The time wheel derived from the star’s rotation around the North Star creates the godly wind or the creator energy. The Ibex, in the center, (see Ibex and Rock Art) represents the fertility god holding the primeval water in his hollow belly that is shaped like a water container. To the ibex right, a man and a woman floating in the air.
The brilliantly staged creation act, Fig.1, combines all the creative elements in a harmonized dance radiating this festive moment. Even though the myth illustrated symbols stand separately the viewer sees this scene as one inseparable unit. The action begins on the left side showing the rotating wheel of time that generates the godly wind and the chaos energy. It continues to the right, where the wind fuses with a sprouting stream of water, see the engraved water dots above the ibex, from the ibex belly. This act represents the fusion of wind and water that creates a man and a woman, which gives birth to the primordial cosmic egg from which all creation originated. The woman seems torn from the man’s body, a description taken from the Biblical version, see the extrusion in the man’s ribs pointed by the woman’s hand. The scene dynamic radiates a sparkling performance as if all the figures know that they participate in a festive important event.
In this rock art, the closed swastika symbolizes the wind force, it was utilized for many thousands of years in Asia. In Sanskrit language, it translates to “Well Being”. For the Phoenicians, it symbolized the Sun. It encompasses the same meaning in this rock art, a symbol of primary force acting in nature.
The creation myth, deciphered here, combines two different regional myths illustrates all the forces participating in the creation process. The left side reminds the Biblical man/woman creation story, which creates the woman from man ribs. The right side represents the idea of Canaanite Cosmic Egg Creation. The scene’s harmonious layout and the precise engraving resonate the spectator’s mind with awe about the beauty of creation.
More deciphering, in a new book Rock Art in Israel, available online.
Copyright © All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of israelrockart.com