Cosmic Egg Creation Myth engraved in Negev Desert Rock Art

Cosmic Egg Creation in rock art

The intricate designs found in rock art captured ancient myths and documented the mysterious act of creation. Although many ancient texts contain detailed accounts of the beginning, prehistoric artistic expressions are quite rare. In the region of Egypt, in Hermopolis a provincial capital in the Old Kingdom 2500BC, and Canaan, a myth circulated that creation spontaneously occurred from a Cosmic Egg. 

Cosmic Egg Creation is an ancient concept that circulated in various cultures across the world, including Hindu, Chinese, and Greek 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 legends that once existed, and they offer insight into the way people viewed the world and the creation of life. 

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.

Conclusion

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.  Awe is evoked by the harmonious layout and the precise engraving used in this rock art to convey the beauty of creation.


Copyright © All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of  negevrockart.co.il

Yehuda Rotblum