Sumerian creation myth

The origins of human beings according to ancient Sumerian texts

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Sumer, or the ‘land of civilized kings’, flourished in Mesopotamia, now modern-day Iraq, around 4500 BC. Sumerians created an advanced civilization with its own system of elaborate language and writing, architecture and arts, astronomy and mathematics. Their religious system was a complex one comprised of hundreds of gods. According to the ancient texts, each Sumerian city was guarded by its own god; and while humans and gods used to live together, the humans were servants to the gods.

The Sumerian creation myth can be found on a tablet in Nippur, an ancient Mesopotamian city founded in approximately 5000 BC.

The creation of Earth ( Enuma Elish ) according to the Sumerian tablets begins like this:

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, Tiamut, the mother of them both
Their waters were mingled together,
And no field was formed, no marsh was to be seen;
When of the gods none had been called into being,
And none bore a name, and no destinies were ordained;
Then were created the gods in the midst of heaven,
Lahmu and Lahamu were called into being...

Sumerian mythology claims that, in the beginning, human-like gods ruled over Earth. When they came to the Earth, there was much work to be done and these gods toiled the soil, digging to make it habitable and mining its minerals.

The texts mention that at some point the gods mutinied against their labour.

When the gods like men
Bore the work and suffered the toll
The toil of the gods was great,
The work was heavy, the distress was much.

Anu, the god of gods, agreed that their labour was too great. His son Enki, or Ea, proposed to create man to bear the labour, and so, with the help of his half-sister Ninki, he did. A god was put to death, and his body and blood was mixed with clay. From that material the first human being was created, in likeness to the gods.

You have slaughtered a god together
With his personality
I have removed your heavy work
I have imposed your toil on man.

In the clay, god and man
Shall be bound,
To a unity brought together;
So that to the end of days
The Flesh and the Soul
Which in a god have ripened –
That soul in a blood-kinship be bound.

This first man was created in Eden, a Sumerian word which means ‘flat terrain’. In the Epic of Gilgamesh , Eden is mentioned as the garden of the gods and is located somewhere in Mesopotamia between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers.

Sumerian tablet depicting Enki in the creation myth. (

Initially human beings were unable to reproduce on their own, but were later modified with the help of Enki and Ninki. Thus, Adapa was created as a fully functional and independent human being. This ‘modification’ was done without the approval of Enki’s brother, Enlil, and a conflict between the gods began. Enlil became the adversary of man, and the Sumerian tablet mentions that men served gods and went through much hardship and suffering.

Adapa, with the help of Enki, ascended to Anu where he failed to answer a question about ‘the bread and water of life’. Opinions vary on the similarities between this creation story and the biblical story of Adam and Eve in Eden.

Featured image: Sumerian chaos monster and sun god. ( Wikipedia)

Note: Ancient Sumerian translations were taken from William Bramley’s book, The Gods of Eden .

Related Links

Adam and Adapa: Two Anthropological characters

Sumerian creation myth

Enuma Elish - The Epic of Creation

Sumerian Myths of Origins

Sumerian Deities

Related Books


By John Black


I believe the only way out for human kind to rule the universe is to master fear while we are still in flesh because it is obvious from the discussions so far that being flesh was our strong point. It is also obvious that for the gods to abandon us - it means they could not destroy us completely without making their existence nonsensical. So science will liberate us, so that we conquer fear and get over with the pre-occupation of death because death takes us back to the gods but if we master fear, we will find a way of bringing our own to life after death. Without the power and the lies of death we will combine all human creativity, improve telepathy, create instant mind coordination and communication across all human form and then go out to master the universe and look for the gods for it will be payback time. I believe Jesus conquered fear and death but he had to hide somewhere (with his mother - a very desolate place where the gods against human kind can not find them - under the protection of the gods who created the woman (Eva)) until human kind is knowledgeable enough and has the numbers and the power to challenge the gods (read Daniel in the bible). The gods when we start challenging them will reply with armagedon but with the guidance of Christ the King, his mother, the gods supporting us and the collective spiritual energies of all those who have gone before us with the same believe we will overcome our enemy gods and return creation to its original course. Amen

Wow! I am blown away by everyone's comments. I think this is the first time I have ever read through a thread that was filled with smart responses that contained sensible reasons for those beliefs. It was also wonderful that the comments remained civilized. The authors of these comments were open minded and respected each other's opinions. Retorts were eloquent instead of the usual you're stupid and wrong, I'm brilliant and right. It was especially nice that these comments remained about sharing knowledge and explaining why the author came to their conclusion. The focus was on the information rather than just trying to prove the other person wrong by attacking their beliefs.

Well done!

Hello everyone!

It’s always been a curiosity with me that when any book is used to explain “our” origins other than Scripture, it is referred to as a “Myth” OR “Folklore” OR “whatever” as if there is NO TRUTH to it! I have come to learn that there is just as much Truth to these books as there is in Scripture.

I believe, that only by combining all of these books, can we get a closer look at “our” beginnings.

I went to the “Related Links” above entitled, “Sumerian Myths of Origins.” As I read through the first two chapters, it occurred to me that perhaps these “poems” (as they have been described) are much more than something as simple as that. Perhaps (and this is just an idea), the layout of these “poems” are aligned in a “resonant” form, rather than a “poetic form?”

“NO!” I have no idea of “How” this would be deciphered but, the clue is in the way the author said these poems are repeated. The only other codex (for lack of a better description) that follows this type of form! (okay, so does computer language).

Anyway, it’s just an idea!


I strongly believe advanced civilization with advanced technologies existed thousands of years ago. I also believe that evolution of intelligent civilization on earth is a cycle. If earth was completely covered with ice during the previous ice age cycle where did all the humans went at that time? It is also proved by science that ice age is a cycle which occur at a certain interval of millions of years. To understand more about this topic I recommend everybody to ready my novel "ancient interstellar" in amazon kindle

I strongly believe advanced civilization with advanced technologies existed thousands of years ago. I also believe that evolution of intelligent civilization on earth is a cycle. If earth was completely covered with ice during the previous ice age cycle where did all the humans went at that time? It is also proved by science that ice age is a cycle which occurs at a certain interval of millions of years. To understand more about this topic I recommend everybody to ready my novel "ancient interstellar" in amazon kindle


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