EnumaElish - THE WAR OF THE GODS Once upon a time there was...

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THE WAR OF THE GODS Once upon a time there was no heaven and no earth. There was nothing in the world but water and the two great beings who ruled it. The fresh water belonged to Apsu, and the salt water to his wife, Tiamat. But at that time the two mixed and mingled together, for there were as yet neither rivers nor seas. Out of their marriage there sprang at length two colossal creatures, Lahmu and his mate, Lahamu; and from them, in turn, rose a second pair, Anshar and his mate, Kishar. Anshar was the spirit of all above, and Kishar the spirit of all below; and from them came Anu, or Heaven. The son of Anu was Ea, wise as he was strong, far superior to his parents and to any that had been before him. After the birth of Ea, the family of the gods grew apace, and a loud and noisy crew they were! Up and down they raced, bawling and screaming at the tops of their voices, until poor Grandma Tiamat was nothing but a bundle of nerves. Nevertheless she suffered in silence and made no complaint. "Children are children," thought she, "and what cannot be cured must be endured." But Grandpa Apsu was of another mind, and one day he could stand the din no longer . So he sent for Mummu, the dwarf whom he kept in his house to counsel and amuse him . "Come," said he, "let us go together to Tiamat and talk to her about it." And off they went to Tiamat to discuss what to do about the children. But Apsu was in no mood for quiet discussion. "Listen," he cried, "I can stand it no more—not a moment's rest by day, and not a wink of sleep at night. We must have our peace and quiet, and I am going to get rid of them all!" When she heard these words, Tiamat, pale with anger, turned to Apsu. "What do you mean?" she thundered. "Are we now to destroy what we ourselves created? Of course they set us on edge, as all children do older people , but we should take it in our stride!" But her words had no effect. As Soon as she had spoken them Mummu sidled up to his master and whispered in his ear. "Sir," said he, "take no notice. If you want your peace and quiet, go ahead and destroy them!" The advice delighted Apsu. Lifting the dwarf upon his knees, he threw his arms around his neck and kissed him. Then they set off together to tell the gods what they had decided. When the gods heard the decision they were seized with panic and started rushing to and fro across the vault of heaven, wringing their hands in wild dismay. Then they sat down in a gloomy, mournful silence, brooding on the fate that hung over their heads.
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All except Ea, the wisest and shrewdest and most subtle of all the hosts of heaven, to whom there is nothing unforeseen, and nothing which he cannot forestall. While all his brothers and sisters huddled together in helpless despair, Ea was busy forming a plan.
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EnumaElish - THE WAR OF THE GODS Once upon a time there was...

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