Little did you know, the creation story isn’t the fall of man—it is the fall of Gods. Also, very few of you know that there is not one god, or countless gods. Rather, there are—sorry—rather, there were three. I am—was—one of them. I had many names: the Creator, the Great Architect, Gaia, the Infinite, Ra, Life, Mother, Father, and the list goes on. You may call me Creation. Here is my story, beginning to end.
I opened my eyes in nothing. I know it wasn’t black. I know it wasn’t white. It was just, well, nothing. There was just me—a girl with a labyrinth of white hair floating in the nothing. Freshly born, or freshly existing, all I knew was the consuming need to fill the nothing.
I clapped my hands and the bang rocketed across the universe. But I was not done. As I ran, my fingers painted the cosmos as a child’s dripping fingers paints the wall. I breathed out the solar winds on my laughter. Stardust poured from my ears. With a flick of the wrist, I slung comet after comet. I rolled the planets between my palms.
Looking back, I went a little overboard, for soon the universe was spilling over. The weight of my own creations bore down on my shoulders. Soon I would be crushed.
But then she appeared. A being like me, but dressed in string. Threads of every material and color coiled around her body, clinging to her legs, hanging from her arms, and so entangled that she seemed inseparable from her gown. She knew me for she said,
“Creation, sister, I am here.” This other being took my hand and by her touch—my first sensation of touch—I knew her.
“Oh sister, oh Fate,” I wailed. My tears flooded the universe as I told her of my plight. Fate did not seem alarmed.
“Everything has its place, I can see it,” she said.
We stood up, hand in hand, and walked. With quick work of her fingers, strings tied moons to planets, planets to stars, stars held together in their galaxies. Every celestial body rotated and orbited just so. We stopped at every world, and she instructed me to carve the mountains just so and to fill the primordial seas. From the largest star to the smallest atom, she arranged everything.
My sister began to wane, but she insisted we continue. Maybe I had made too much. Not even the Gods could sort it all. But Fate paused and pointed across the universe to a corner where there was nothing—a star had disappeared.
We hurried to where it had been and found in its place a stranger cloaked in empty sky. He wrapped his arms around a world as it vanished.
“Why?” I asked.
“It was tired. I gave it rest,” the stranger answered.
The word rest echoed in me. I wondered how long ago that world’s waters ran dry and its surface began to crumble. How long did it continue because I had made it? Fate urged me to leave, but I stepped forward, offering the stranger a light from my hand. He reached out, took a hold of the light, cradling it in his arms. He hugged the light to his chest and its brightness faded into him.
“I am Creation.”
“I am Death.”
That was the start of my love for Death.
“And I am Fate.” My sister stepped next to me. “Come with us.”
And so we became Three. With Death among us, I could fashion the new without fear, for he was there to take away the old. And with Fate’s guidance, the universe reached balance.
But that is not the end of the story, because you had not begun yet. It would be many eons until you began; creating all life takes time. Between then and your beginning, I created a home for the Three of us between the stitching of this universe. You may call it the Heavens. And I crafted a book and pen for Fate to keep record of all created and their futures.
The first of many children were formed. The realm continued to grow and there were only Three of us. Fate decreed we needed help. I didn’t oppose. That meant I could spend more time with Death. For you see, we had fallen very much in love. He loved and cared for all of my works, and I loved him for it. Death was warmer company than my sister. I adored my sister, but her mind was filled with maps and futures, no room for affection. Death was quiet, but he was also gentle. We became constant companions. I could speak of Death’s subtleties all day, but you don’t want to hear about us.
So, each of us formed our first children from a lock of our hair. Every culture has a different name for them, whether it is angels, demons, nymphs, harbingers or minor deities. Made in our image, they aided us by carrying out the smaller tasks that kept the universe in order. Fate called them her servants. I called them my children. Soon our realm was filled with them. Our family was bigger and happiness abounded even if Fate did not share my glee. She spent more time in her palace writing in her book.
As the days passed, the happiness became routine, and I became bored. My world had become static. Gods do not change and my children shared that trait. They did not, however, share my ability to create. Now, when I say create, I mean to make something out of nothing. Not change, not mold, not combine, but to have something entirely new that was not there before. Humans generally take this as impossibility. A very clever human wrote, “Energy can neither be created nor destroyed.” He was right, of humans and all other beings besides the Gods. I love my children, so I did not fault them for their lack of this skill.
In these days, I found solace in one particular little blue world—your Earth. Everything about Earth changes from the landscape to the weather to the leaves on the trees. Take you for insistence. From the microscopic cells that swam in boiling oceans, to the first land creatures, to the dinosaurs, to the rise of mammals, I have sculpted your evolution. Every generation of life was different. But then you stopped changing. Something was missing.
I went to my sister and told her so. The humans needed to grow on their own; they needed ability to bring about something where nothing was there before. Your ancestors called it magic.
Fate, she disagreed. In fact, I had never seen her so enraged. For a moment, her calculating mask fractured when she screamed, “You will never walk upon the Earth again!”
“Why?” I asked.
“Because I am Fate and I said it is so,” she replied. “What I say is what is meant to be.”
“But I made them. I am Creation and I will give what I will.”
When I turned to leave, my sister’s strings ensnared me. She imprisoned me in the lowest floors of the Heavens, bound to the wall by own hair. I wept for days, wondering what would become of my children and my humans. I wondered what my beloved Death was doing. Had he noticed my absence? What lies did Fate spin on her silver tongue?
When I resigned myself to this prison, one of my sister’s children happened upon me. Not just any child, but her closest advisor and companion—the right hand of Fate. Appalled at his own Goddess’s actions, he set me free. With a blade he cut my hair away. As it unraveled, my white locks fell from the Heavens to the Earth. Strands scattered on the winds fell upon the heads of humans.
Not until later would I learn that each human touched by a strand of my hair was gifted with a part of my power, a part of me. They began creating—ideas grew in the empty mind behind their eyes. True, no human can create energy, but they began to transform it. In the beginning, a very few humans had more of me than others; true magic users summoned fire from their fingers and bent waves at their command. But the power dispersed through the species. Invention became embedded in them all. Friction became fire, stones became wheels, fields became farms, and wastelands became cities. The human race was born that day.
But what of the Gods?
I’ve told you the rise of humankind, but not the fall of my kind. After Fate’s Right Hand freed me from my prison, I fled the Heavens, but Fate hurried after. I could see the mountains peeking through the clouds when Fate reached me. She grasped my hand.
“Help me correct the chaos you wrought!” she said. “They will end themselves!”
“But they won’t stand still!” I yelled.
We fought, lighting the dark sky with our blows. Among the chaos, Death came down from the Heavens. He tried to pull us apart, but Fate would not let go.
“Fate, stop this! She’s your sister!” he cried. Fate would not listen, so he beseeched me, “Creation, let her have what she wants.”
“I can’t,” I said. My rage burned hotter than any star I forged. My sister’s strings pulled tighter, cutting us both. Death’s cloak spread around us all.
I remember falling, the three of us entangled, and looking into Death’s eyes one last time. Light filled my vision as we burned.
The Gods died that day.
And that was my end. Now there is only you, my human children. Go out with your clever minds and crafty hand. Continue my story—the story of creation.