The Myth of the World

Sender Spike
11 min readFeb 28, 2024

In the beginning, Sea, that oldest mother hovering in void, created Sky and Earth. There was nothing to separate the two, so they mingled together and begat Lord-wind, the overseer of breath and spirit of all places.

When Lord-wind began to blow, he separated Sky from Earth creating space between the two. And Sky was fashioned into three vaults of heaven covering the Earth, and Earth was fashioned into land on top of the mountain cave of death and fresh waters of life underneath. Then, Sky made the outermost vault of heaven, which was made of the most precious stone, his abode and begat his children.

Thus, Sea birthed Lord-earth, the ruler of fresh waters of life underneath, the perfect shaper of the world and the keeper of divine powers, the holder of decrees-of-divine-world-order, and Earth birthed Lady-grain, the unsurpassed overseer possessing the greatest wisdom rationing justly for all creatures, and Lady-reed, the true wife and mistress of birth.

Then, Lord-earth made the fresh waters of life his abode and Lady-grain birthed her daughter Lady-wind. Lady-wind became consort of Lord-wind and they begat Moon, the younger brother of Earth. Lady-reed became consort of Lord-earth and they begat Great-lady, the star of the young lord and treasured sevenfold light.

Then, Great-lady became consort of Moon and they begat Lady-great-earth, and she was given the authority over the mountain cave of death where all dead must depart and live in darkness for eternity eating dust and mud being their food. Then, they also begat Sun, the justice of world and heat of the day, and his twin sister Sky-face, the lady of palace, the beloved brightest of dusk and dawn, who was also called morning star.

Moon, Sun, and Sky-face made the lowest vault of heaven, which was made of jasper, their abode, and the middle vault of heaven, made of semi-precious stone, became the abode of all the other children of Sky who were birthed to help other lords and ladies.

Then, Lord-wind created all plants and animals, and Lord-earth with his wife Lady-reed created humans from clay to take care of the land, to hear and speak knowledge and understanding in order to perform services to Sea and all her divine offspring.

Thus, all was created. People were born, lived, and died in the land of the noble lords, the plentiful Garden, the steppe between two long rivers.

When fate of being great-man descended from heaven, it first resided in the Guidance-place. Great-man of Guidance-place ruled for many years. He build House-of-fresh-waters-of-life and Lord-earth was very pleased with his dwelling place among the people. But Guidance-place fell, and fate of being great-man was taken to Wall-sculptor-place. There, a man called Faithful-son the shepherd one day became its great-man.

In those days, Sky-face was yearning for a husband. So, she consulted her twin brother, Sun, who proposed on behalf of Faithful-son. But Sky-face didn’t want to listen. She didn’t want her husband to be a coarse, lowly shepherd, she didn’t like his gifts. She wanted a farmer, she wanted a husband who would give her barley for bread and beer, flax to weave fine linen for bridal gown. Only such man was worthy of her loins.

When Faithful-son heard of that, he spoke: “Why do you speak about the farmer? Why do you speak about him? If he gives you black flour, I will give you black wool. If he gives you white flour, I will give you white wool. If he gives you beer, I will give you sweet milk. If he gives you bread, I will give you honey cheese. I will give the farmer my leftover cream. I will give the farmer my leftover milk.

But Sky-face was still not satisfied because of her noble, divine family. Thus Faithful-son spoke: “Sky-face do not start a quarrel. My father, Lord-earth, is as good as your father, Moon. My mother, Ewe, is as good as your mother, Great-lady. My sister, Grapevine-of-heaven, is as good as yours. Queen of the palace, let us talk it over.

The word they had spoken was a word of desire. And thus, from the starting of the quarrel, came the lovers’ desire. The king went with lifted head to the holy loin. He went with lifted head to the loins of Sky-face. He went to the queen with lifted head. He opened wide his arms to the holy priestess of heaven. And Sky-face spoke: “My sweet love, lying by my heart, tongue-playing, one by one, my fair Faithful did so fifty times. Now, my sweet love is sated.

But Sky-face’s satisfaction didn’t last long. She, who was also called morning star, begrudged the amount of divine powers Lord-earth granted to her. She thought that she deserved more, she craved her older sisters’ power and wanted to sit on her throne in the great earth, the mountain cave of death, the netherworld.

Thus, Sky-face prepared a plan. Before leaving for mountain cave, she instructed her minister, Lady-of-servants, to visit Lord-wind, Moon, and Lord-earth and plead with them to rescue her, if she does not return in three days. Then, she put on seven garments of divine power bestowed upon her and stood before the gates of netherworld.

At first, the gatekeeper didn’t want to let her in. Then, when Sky-face claimed that she wishes to attend the funeral rites of her sisters’ recently deceased first husband, Lady-great-earth commanded the gatekeeper to let her in. She also commanded that Sky-face must put away one garment at each of the seven gates of underworld. So, Sky-face passed through the gates, each stripping her of one of her divine powers, until she stood naked before her sister, Lady-great-earth.

When her clothes were took away from her, she made her sister Lady-great-earth rise from her throne, and instead she sat on her throne. But the Children-of-Sky, the seven judges who were judging the dead, rendered their decision against her. They looked at her — it was the look of death. They shouted at her — it was the shout of heavy guilt. The afflicted woman was turned into a corpse. And the corpse was hung on a hook.

When, after three days, Sky-face was not returning, Lady-of-servants visited Lord-wind and Moon to plead for help. But both spoke: “My daughter craved the great heaven and she craved the great below as well. Sky-face craved the great heaven and she craved the great below as well. The divine powers of the underworld are divine powers which should not be craved, for whoever gets them must remain in the underworld. Who, having got to that place, could then expect to come up again?

Only when Lady-of-servants arrived to Lord-earth and pleaded with him, Lord-earth spoke: “What has my daughter done? She has me worried. What has Sky-face done? She has me worried. What has the mistress of all the lands done? She has me worried. What has the priestly prostitute of Sky done? She has me worried.” Thus father Lord-earth helped her in this matter.

Sky-face, because of Lord-earth’s instructions, was about to ascend from the underworld. But as Sky-face was about to ascend from the underworld, the Children-of-Sky seized her: “Who has ever ascended from the underworld, has ascended unscathed from the underworld? If Sky-face is to ascend from the underworld, let her provide a substitute for herself.

But Sky-face could not find a fitting substitute. All her subjects were loyal, all were mourning for her, she could not bring herself to hand them over to the demons. So, they went to the apple tree on the plains of Abundant-dwelling-place. There was Faithful-son clothed in a magnificent garment and seated magnificently on a throne, enjoying fine beer in the company of maid-servants.

Sky-face looked at him, it was the look of death. She spoke to him, it was the speech of anger. She shouted at him, it was the shout of heavy guilt: “How much longer? Take him away.” Holy Sky-face gave Faithful-son the shepherd into their hands.

But her heart was not glad. She tore at her hair like grass, she ripped it out like grass: “You wives who lie in your men’s embrace, where is my precious husband?” Then, a fly spoke to her: “I will show you where your man is.” Thus, Sky-face, Ewe, and Grapevine-of-heaven went to the place where Faithful-son was held.

But the order of netherworld could not be broken, and thus Sky-face decreed: “You for half the year and your sister for half the year will be with my sister Lady-great-earth.” And so it was. Ever since then, during the month in midsummer, people of land of the noble lords mourn for Faithful-son and, during the month in midwinter, they celebrate his return, they celebrate his new birth.

Many places fell since those days and the fate of being the great-man resided in Healing-place. People of land of the noble lords were doing so much noise that Lord-wind decided to sent a flood to silence them all, to drown them all. He convinced all great lords and sworn them to secrecy about his plan.

When they were holding their assembly, Right-for-eternity, the great-man and priest of Healing-place, overheard their plans in a vision. He was very frightened but Lord-earth commanded him to build a huge boat and to take his wife, his family, craftsmen of his place, baby animals, and grains and bring them on the boat. After Right-for-eternity finished what Lord-earth revealed to him, he boarded the boat at last, and a terrible storm came.

The storm raged for seven days and the huge boat was tossed on the great waters to and fro. After seven days the storm was over and Right-for-eternity opened a window. He saw a mountain where he rested his boat for seven days.

On seventh day, he sent out a dove to see if the waters receded, but it returned. Then, he sent a swallow, but it, too, returned. Finally, he sent out a raven, and it didn’t return. Thus, Right-for-eternity knew that the waters were receding.

He set all the animals free, prostrated himself before Sun and sacrificed an ox and a sheep. He prostrated himself before Sky and Lord-wind, who gave him eternal breath of immortality and took him to dwell in the land of sweet water springs.

After the flood had swept over, the fate of being great-man was in World-place. Many great-men ruled over it and High-land in east was subdued by their weapons. But World-place was smitten by weapons, and the fate of being great-man passed to House-of-Sky, the temple of holy Sky-face. Soon after, Lord-decree-rising, also called Hunter, became great-man. And he built Throne-place by bringing districts of House-of-Sky and Abundant-dwelling-place together.

During these days, Sky-face again craved divine powers that were outside of her reach. Thus, she decided to get decrees-of-divine-world-order from Lord-earth. She set out to Guidance-place, she set out to House-of-fresh-waters-of-life to pay visit to Lord-earth. She intended to seduce him and get the divine powers.

But Lord-earth, being of exceptional knowledge, already knew her intentions, even before holy Sky-face had approached within six miles of the fresh waters of life. Thus, he challenged her in drinking contest. The bronze vessels were filled to the brim with beer and sweet wine and Lord-earth became more and more drunk. One by one, he gave Sky-face decrees-of-divine-world-order until he gave them all to her.

When he woke up and the effects of the beer cleared from him, he asked his minister about Sky-face’s whereabouts. But holy Sky-face had gathered up the divine powers, decrees-of-divine-world-order, and embarked onto the Boat of Heaven. The Boat of Heaven had already left the quay.

Despite his attempts, Lord-earth could not get the divine powers back and he could not bring himself to blame Sky-face for his drunken error. And so the decrees-of-divine-world-order were transferred to Throne-place where people joyously celebrated Sky-face’s triumphant arrival as the Queen of Heaven.

Thus, Throne-place got its eternal glory and Guidance-place was restored by other lords as a reward for Lord-earth’s lawfulness. Soon after, Fierce-young-great-man, also called Shepherd, who was a fool, replaced Lord-decree-rising on his throne and became great-man. Few years later, Faithful-son known as Fisherman became great-man. After him, the son of Fierce-young-great-man, Scepter-rising-crown-prince called Scepter, became great-man of Throne-place.

May holy Queen of Heaven protect Scepter, the mighty bull of Throne-place! May the might of Scepter protect his people!

This is a loose rendition of the core Sumerian myth and how it would probably look like around 3500–2700 BCE, when Uruk, Biblical Erech, became the dominant power in Levant. As may be pretty obvious, but is nonetheless quite intriguing, not only you will find this myth rewritten and adapted to cultural locales of direct successors of Sumer (Akkadian Empire, Neo-Sumerian Empire, Babylonians, Assyrians, Persians, etc.), you will also find it (almost verbatim) in Greco-Roman legacy or Judeo-Christo-Islamic world, as well as in China, India, Japan, Korea, etc., or in folk traditions throughout the whole Europe, but also Africa, Oceania, and Americas.

Simply speaking, this is the primordial myth and associated cosmology of our current civilization that keeps us captive for, at least, roughly six thousand years and counting. Ironically enough, even naturalistic philosophy in this day and age is its derivative. No mind was spared.

You may ask, how is that possible? Many people argued, and many still do, that it’s a reflection of human nature, that it’s a natural occurrence and a sign of our common traits (or even a valid picture of reality). Alas, cultural diffusion is a real thing, and, as recent research attests, humanity was always a global community. Surprisingly, New World was never new to begin with, as it was always connected with the rest of the world. If in no other way, at least in terms of exchange of ideas — imagine an enormously long-distance game of telephone.

In any case, this myth, probably due to its frightening familiarity and ubiquity, has the strange tendency to calm us, but also frustrate and scare us as it does not provide any possible alternative beyond blind (or rationalized) submission, service, and obedience to some allegedly higher power. Clearly, we are scared shitless of death and dying and our shamans, priests and sages of yesteryear (or their equivalents today), even if we disregard the blatant opportunism of various nasty power games, were and are not a bit wiser. (Nevertheless, I’m still left wondering, what kind of crazy mental stuff was this mythological monstrosity built upon?)

Well, thanks for your cultural legacy dear ancestors, but it’s time to let it go. I’m fairly certain that it will serve as a stark reminder how things should not be done. After all, when you know who you are while you don’t discard any empirical evidence, you don’t need any myths. And you certainly don’t need this Sumerian one.

And that, my friends, is what is called freedom.

This article uses some copy-paste fragments of various translations of Sumerian tablets, which I deliberately didn’t quote within the text itself in order to keep a “natural feel”. I also took some creative liberties while amalgamating the “primal myth” from many fragmented original stories and poems, but also 3rd party summaries all over the net, not to mention the actual word-by-word translations of actual names of places and characters as they are written in cuneiform.