Creation and the Gods in Egypt.
In all the Ancient Egyptian traditions,
creation began with the emergence of a mound from the primeval waters.
Each area, however, claimed their local religous centre as the site of
the Origin, and different Gods took precedence. Thus at Heliopolis in
Lower Egypt nine Gods , the Ennead, were worshipped. Atum was the first
to emerge and created the others, Shu (air ) Tefnut ( moisture ) Geb
(earth ) Nut (sky ) Osiris and Seth , Order and Disorder, and
Isis and Nepthys their consorts.Atum created by sexual or other
In Memphis a more abstract contemplative
creator was Ptah, patron of craftsmen , who brought things into
existence with the ideas emanating from his heart and names from his
tongue. By uttering a litany of names Ptah brought all the Gods
and all of Egypt into being..
In Hermopolis further to the South, in the centre of
Egypt, local myths dealt with what occured before the mound appeared as
well as with a group of eight Gods , four pairs of males and females.
Thoth (thought ) patron deity of the city, was responsible for
bringing them together, resulting in a violent meeting and ultimately a
cosmic Egg, from which the Sun emerged in the first sunrise.
Thebes in Upper Egypt held that Amun was
all-powerful, a creator who stood apart and hidden from his creations.
Though hidden he was omnipotent and omnipresent, awesome and unknowable
while everywhere and in every thing. He was worshipped in temples at
Karnak and Luxor and his worship spread up and down the Nile.
The origins of mankind were not really of any
great importance in Egyptian mythology, except at Elephantine Island
near the border with Nubia to the South which was the centre of
the God Khnum. He was a craftsman who moulded beings into existence on
a potters wheel.