Creation Stories

(Jewish, Genesis 1)
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. And the earth was formless and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep. The Spirit of God was moving over the waters. And God said, Let there be Light!. And there was light. And God saw that the light was Good.

(India, The Rig Veda)
When there was neither Being nor Not-Being, no sky, no heaven, nor what is beyond, what did it encompass? Where? In whose protection? What was this ocean of the deep unfathomable? Neither death nor immortality was there then, no sign of light or darkness. Only the One, who breathed, by its own power, and became Desire, first seed of mind....

(Enuma Elish, Ancient Babylon)
When there was no heaven, no earth, no height, no depth, no name; when Apsu, the fresh water, was alone, the first parent; and Tiamet, the salt water, had all in her womb; and there were no gods; the sweet and bitter were mingled together, no reed was woven, no rushes in the muddy water. The gods were nameless, natureless, futureless. Then, from Apsu and Tiamet, in the waters gods were born.

(Ancient Persia, Zoroaster's Zend Avesta)
The Light was above and the Darkness was below, and between the two was the Void. Ahuramazd was in the Light and Ahriman in the Darkness. The Lord of Light knew of the Lord of Darkness and his preparations for battle. But the Lord of Darkness knew not of the Lord of Light... Then, by the pure Word of the law, Ahuramazd overpowered Ahriman and hurled him back into the Darkness.

(Ancient Greek, Hesiod's Theogony)
Chaos was first of all, but next appeared broad-bosomed Earth, sure resting place for all the gods who live on snowy Mt. Olympus... Then from Chaos came black Night and Erebos, who soon gave birth to Day and Space. And Earth meanwhile, bore starry Heaven from her womb.

(Christian, John's Gospel)
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. All things were made through the Word. In Him was life, and the life was the light of humanity.

(India, Upanishads)
In the beginning was the sacred word, Om. All that ever was, all that is, and all that ever will be, was created through the sacred word, Om.

(Marshall Islands, South Pacific)
Long ago there was no land at all, only the ocean. But there was a God named Lowa who came down and made a magical sound, "Mmmmmmmmmmmmm", and all the islands were created.

(Mayan, Central America)
All was in suspense, calm, motionless, silent and still. The sky was empty... Then came the Word of Tepu and Gucamatz, the Forefathers, who were in the waters surrounded by light, hidden under green and blue feathers. They were great sages... They created the Earth. "Earth!" they said, and instantly it was made.

(Maori, New Zealand)
Io dwelt within the breath of immensity. All was in watery darkness, no glimmer of dawn. And he said: "Darkness, become a shining darkness!" And at once, light appeared.

(Scandinavian, The Kalavala)
Of old there was nothing, no sand nor sea nor cool waves. No earth, nor heaven above. Only the yawning abyss. The sun knew not her dwelling nor the moon his realm. The stars had not their places.

(Hebrew Psalms)
By the Word of the Lord were the heavens made, and all their hosts from the breath of his mouth.

(India, Puranas)
In the beginning, this universe was only the Self. He looked around and saw nothing but himself. Then he cried out, "I am He!" ("Ham'Sa"), whence came the name, I Am. That is why even today, when one is addressed, one answers, "I am..." and then announces the other name that one goes by. He was afraid. That is why people are afraid to be alone. He thought, "What am I afraid of? There is nothing but myself;" then his fear was gone.... He was unhappy. That is why people are unhappy when they are alone. He wanted a companion. He took the form of a woman and man embracing. He divided this form, which was himself, in two. From that came husband and wife...

In the beginning nothing was here where the world is now, nothing but darkness, water and wind. There were no people, only the spirits. It was a lonely place. Then the spirits made the earth and the sky. They made the earth in the form of a living woman and called her Mother. They made the sky in the form of a man and called him Father.

(Fulani tribe, Mawi)
In the beginning there was a huge drop of milk!

(Fon tribe, Africa)
The world was created by one God who is both male and female, whose name is Nana-Buluku. Nana-Buluku gave birth to twins who were named Mawu and Lisa, who ruled over the creation. To Mawu, the Woman, was given command of the Night. To Lisa, Man, command of the Day.

At first there was nothing at all. Time passed, and nothing became Something. Time passed, and Something split in two. The two were Male and Female. These two produced two more, and these two produced Pan Ku, the first being, the great Person, the Creator.

At first, Heaven and Earth were not separate. The Yin and the Yang, the female and the male, were not divided. They were a formless mass, like an egg. The light clear part of the egg gradually became Heaven. The thick yolk gradually settled down and became Earth.

In the beginning, when there was nothing but water, God and the first Man moved about in the shape of two black geese over the ocean.

(Huron tribe, Native American)
In the beginning there was nothing but water, a wide sea, where spirits of animals lived before the earth was created. A woman fell from the sky. She was divine. Two loons, who were flying over the water, looked up and saw her falling. To save her from drowning, they placed their bodies beneath her. They called other animals to help. A turtle came and took her onto his back. Other animals, like frog and beaver, dove into the waters and brought up mud to make an island for her on the turtle's back. Thus they created this world, which is called Turtle Island.

Creation according to modern physics:

"The cosmic religious experience is the strongest and the noblest driving force behind scientific research." Einstein

"The vacuum of physics contains in its faculties everything that the laws of nature will permit. It fluctuates - the virtual particles come and go. The only thing they are missing is the energy it would take to make them appear as real particles. All that can appear in reality must be present as a possibility - as a state of virtual particles - in the vacuum. Add energy to the vacuum and those virtual states may appear as particles." (24)

"The physical vacuum... carries within itself the possibilities of everything that can exist in the physical world. Once we attain true knowledge of the vacuum, we will have a comprehensive knowledge of everything, including the laws of nature. It is as in the thinking of the ancient philosophers. The knowledge of the void, the "nothing," is intimately connected with the knowledge of the "something."... We take it as a matter of course that empty space is not really empty." (32)
Henning Genz, Nothingness: The Science of Empty Space, Perseus Publishing, Cambridge, Mass. 1998
(Genz is professor of theoretical physics at University of Karlsruhe, Germany)