Moses had a problem. His people weren’t bad at obeying orders from well-trained Egyptians, but their creativity, let alone self-esteem, was non-existent. If they remained in Egypt any longer they would succumb to all the idols to which the Egyptians assigned all power. His people were slaves. They simply had no idea how to stand up on their own feet, how to cope on their own. Moses cogitated for hours, days, how he might awaken his people; how he could explain to them that the power to create lay within them. He dreamt of taking them out into the dessert, but with their present mindset they wouldn’t last a week.
And then he had an idea.
He’d tell them how the world came into being. Surely, even the dumbest amongst them would understand that. Only he would have to be careful. If he assigned the creative process to Yahweh, all would be lost. They would think that only Yahweh had the power. So he invented “Objects of Worship”. He called them Elohim. Like his people. Weren’t they all objects of worship? Weren’t they all endowed with the Infinite Creative Potential?
He had to show them that although they emerged from darkness—light, or knowledge, comes from within. He’d start with an idea. Gradually it would take shape. That’s what creativity is all about. Slowly he had to fill the idea with details, as though with life of its own until it took shape, become real.
He had to make it big. Bigger than life—to excite them, to get them fired up. Heaven and earth, and earth and water and animals and fish, they all had to be there, to make the idea real. Tangible. Beautiful. Inviting. He had to teach them how the creative process works. They were simple folk. They could neither read nor write. He had to tell them the story in such a way that they would remember. If not the story then at least the process.
The Genesis. The Creative Process.
He had to show them that nothing was impossible. Nothing was beyond their capabilities, no matter how simple they were. How uneducated. He had to show them that they were truly the children of the Most High.
Next evening he brought them all together. And then he began…
In the beginning Elohim created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void…
They were simple, uneducated, illiterate people. He talked deep into the night. They listened in silence, rapt, feeling that great knowledge was being imparted to them. And slowly, very slowly, light dawned within their consciousness.
Millennia have passed.
And now, today, there are people who spend their lifetimes attempting to interpret Moses’ teaching as though it were history or some kind of pseudo-scientific dissertation.
Shame on us.
More on the subject in: Beyond Religion I Genesis.