Cosmic Egg Creation Myth engraved in Negev Desert Rock Art

Cosmic Egg Creation in Negev rock art

Rock art is not just a meaningless engraving; it's an illustration of a story or idea. It serve as windows into the minds and beliefs of our ancestors, revealing their understanding of the world and the cosmos. For example, the rock art. presented here from the Negev Desert, tells the story of creation from a Cosmic Egg. A common belief in the ancient world. These intricate artworks capture ancient myths and documented the mysterious act of creation, providing us with invaluable insights into prehistoric spirituality and cosmology.  

While many ancient texts contain detailed accounts of the beginning, prehistoric artistic expressions are quite rare and thus hold a special place in our study of ancient cultures. In Egypt, particularly in Hermopolis , a provincial capital during the Old Kingdom around 2500 BC, and in Canaan, a myth circulated that creation spontaneously occurred from a Cosmic Egg. This myth was not only depicted in texts but also immortalized in rock art, demonstrating the profound significance of this creation story across different mediums and regions.  

The Cosmic Egg myth, as illustrated in rock art, symbolizes the birth of the universe from a singular, mystical origin. These artistic expressions reveal the sophisticated symbolic thinking of early humans, who used rock surfaces as canvases to narrate their cosmological beliefs. Thus, rock art transcends mere decoration; it is a profound expression of the human experience, encapsulating the essence of ancient myths and the mysterious act of creation itself.  

Cosmic Egg Creation is an ancient concept that circulated in various cultures across the world, including Hindu, and Chinese mythology. This creation myth explains the birth of the universe from an egg. The Cosmic Egg represents the universe in its embryonic state. By ancient logic, it is considered to be the Bubble of Creation since it contains everything that is necessary to create a new life.

Now, we can visualize this creation event in the form of rock art engravings that date back to prebiblical times. These engravings serve as a reminder of the ancient beliefs and myths in pre-historic and offer insight into the way people viewed the creation. 

Creation Myth Symbols

Creation stories from different cultures share similar elements, likely due to diffusion from one culture to another. They all explain that creation emerged from chaos and was transformed into order by the godly powers that intervened to form life. Creation is described as a fusion of the essential elements of life, consisting of wind (air), earth, and water. Before creation, darkness and chaos ruled the world. After the intervention of godly forces, light and order emerged, initiating creation.

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".

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:
 “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

The image Fig.1, a rock art from the Negev Desert, is a captivating depiction of the creation process engraved with intricate details. Brilliantly staged, the act encompasses the fusion of all elements of creation, air, water, and earth, in a harmonious dance. Despite the fact that the illustrated myth symbols stand separately, the viewer perceives the scene as a single, cohesive act.

Cosmic Egg Creation, rock art Negev Desert Israel
Fig.1   Cosmic Egg Creation, rock art Negev Desert Israel

Starting from the left side of the image, we witness the beginning of the creation action. Here, the wheel of time is shown rotating, generating a powerful wind of divine origin. Continuing to the right, we see the body of an ibex, representing earth, that is shaped like a water container. The ibex holds the water that flows through its horns, providing a stunning visual representation of the divine elements, wind, earth and water, fusing together at the first act of creation.

The water merges with the godly wind, as indicated by the engraved rain of dots above the ibex. The mixture creates a man who stands tall and proud, infused with the wind and water that flows to his hand. The symbols of a male and female, evoke the Biblical tale of Adam and Eve. Eve is created from Adam's rib, evident from the woman's image, as she points toward an extrusion on the man's ribs.

Together, man and woman stand as the very embodiment of creation, bursting with energy and life force.  And it is from this divine union that the primordial cosmic egg is born, the source of all creation. The scene is dynamic and charged with energy, with all figures appearing to recognize the significance of the moment and their role in this festive celebration of creation.


The closed swastika symbolizes wind force and is often viewed as a fertility symbol or a perpetual symbol of life. As such, it has been used in Asia for many thousands of years. In Sanskrit language, it translates to "Well Being". For the Phoenicians, it symbolized the Sun. Likewise, it represents the force of life in this rock art.

An interpretation of the creation myth presented here combines two regional myths that illustrate the various forces involved in creation. Based on the swastika and the egg, it appears that this rock art is older than the biblical story.  The scene underscores the gradual evolution of ideas rather than their instant appearance. The myth evolved from the Cosmic Egg creation, about 2500BC to a tale of a man and woman, about 800BC, showing that ideas develop over time.

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Yehuda Rotblum