Sumerian creation myth

The origins of human beings according to ancient Sumerian texts

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


Interesting that the plural is used in the Genesis account: "See, the man has become like one of us, knowing good and evil". (3:22)

yes it is verrry interesting

Maybe this is one reason for the later creation of the idea that Jesus and the god of the Bible co-existed from the beginning of time--to find a way of explaining the plural reference in the old texts? Or maybe it's a reference to the angels that the Bible describes.

This is not intended to cause offense to any particular religious believes that anyone may have, it is merely an observation and my personal opinion.

To understand the sumerian texts you have to look at it from the perspective that the gods referred to as Anu, Enki, Ninki and Enlil are no more than high ranking members of a HIGHLY ADVANCED, SPECIES of MORTAL BEINGS with tremendous life spans that transversed the expanses of the universe to mine a planet (earth) of an element (gold) imperative to the survival of their own species. We know very little of the planet from which this species resides or of its social and political structure but what we do know is that the four "gods" mentioned previously were the highest ranked officers (viewed as superior or gods) of this mission to earth and would have taken a substantial amount of their people with them to carry out the required work including metal analysts, tera formers, biologists, engineers, miners, security personnel, builders, medics and many other professions vital to the success of the mission these people of lower rank would have been viewed as workers, helpers, healers, warriors (Angels).

Upon arrival the planets surface was tera fomed so was it possible to (a.) Survive the "alien" environment (b.) So that the areas of high gold density were easily accessible and (c.) To provide a diverse, self contained ecosystem of animals, plants, insects and microbial life to surply a food source and raw materials for an indefinite amount of time (The Creation Story) which may or may not have taken 6 days to complete.

As the Sumerian story says Enki and Ninki created Us (humans) at the request of Anu (the big cheese) under the supervision of Enlil (second in command) by taking the dna from their own species(made in gods image) and combining it with "clay" which i believe to be the literal translation when building blocks or genetic base material (apes) would be more accurate. As we were only a worker species many the sections of the "gods" DNA were rendered inactive or locked before being inserted into the genetic base material to lower intelligence to keep the population (slaves) productive, obedient controllable, and "god fearing" to avoid decent or rebellion. reproduction and life span was also kept in check by making the new species entirely male to keep the amount of new mine workers at a manageable number using a system of replacing new for old when death, injury or they grew to old to be productive, with a potentially enormous amount of other attributes locked as they were not required for the "job" Man(Adam) was created for but all being said and done Man was quite content and blissfully ignorant that there might be anything out side the mines.

Enki and Ninki grew very fond of their creations and were disgusted at the treatment of their "children" by Anu and Enilil so they devised a plan to create a new model of worker in secret that were not as strong or robust as Man but Mining Gold is not what Enki and Ninki had planned for this new model, this model was smarter, it hated being told what to do, it asked lots of questions, questions about everything happening around them, the conditions they were made to work in. questions about where they came from, whats outside the mines Enki and Ninki had given them the gift of Curiosity and Knowlage (like the snake and the apple from the tree of knowledge) this infuriated Anu and Enlil so they called this model Woman(Eve) Not only was this model smarter it was compatible with the previous model and together were able to make more models(children) that were both smart and strong inquisitive and robus.

This brought about a war between the "gods" Enki and Ninki were banished and stripped of there ranks(Satan and the Snake), Enlil declared all humans his enemys and they were punished with extreme hardships and increased shifts in the mines and were eventually abandoned by the "gods".

So long story short according to the sumerian accounts the person reffered to as ALMIGHTY GOD in the bible is really the "gods" Anu and Enlil that enslaved Mankind in ignorance, slavery and fear of a species of very mortal being on the verge of becoming extinct pretending to be the creators of the universe when in truth they're just a bunch of people that would almost certainly be dead today if it wasn't for us because they were too lazy to do it themselves. And that makes Enki(Satan banished to earth) and Ninki (symbolised by two snakes) the creators of our species and the greatest contributers to mankind's development, and stood up against their own people at the cost of loosing their real family, never being able to return to their own people and friends or their real home ever again because they cared for us like real parents should and tried to free us from the Slavery and Oppression of Gold Miners Pretending to be the divine creators of the Universe and everything in it.

The bible has the same story about an oppressor denying people the right to seek Knowlage and question the truth of the claims being made by the very person telling them not ask questions and do as your told. Then there's confining them to the garden of eden forever which is no different to being confined in the mines to me just that the blissful ignorance of the slave is depicted by pretty flowers and green grass instead of a lack of intelligence causing you to accept your prison.

In both someone comes to help them then the hostage taker gets angry and punishes everyone and abandons them.

The only difference is in the sumerian account it's the liberators that become the heros and expose a slave driving fraud.

In the the bible the liberator is the bad guy because apparently he's just trying to be a trouble maker and upset the status quo by asking them to question why it is that someone with nothing to hide and with 100% pure intentions has taken them hostage stripped them naked and forbid them to leave, or seek any form of knowledge or ask questions.

"Ask and ye shall receive. Knock and it shall be opened unto you." - The Bible


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