Rig Veda 10.90 says Earth, Sky, heaven, and other creatures were created from Purusha's body.

Yajur Veda 14.28 says something different.

With one they praised; creatures were produced…With five they praised; beings were created.

Rig Veda 10.72 says that the earth was born from the upward-growing tree.

If you read Indra and Varuna suktas, there it is written that Indra and Varuna are the creator.

O Indra-Varuṇa, as ye created all these creatures of the world by your surpassing might, In peace and quiet Mitra waits on Varuṇa, the Other, awful, with the Maruis seeks renown.

Atharva Veda 13.1.52 says Rohita created Earth:

Rohita made the earth to be his altar, heaven his Dakshinā. Then heat he took for Agni, and with rain for molten butter he created every living thing.

If you look at Puranas, there Brahma is the creator.

  • Lord Brahma is not only the creator according to puranas.according to attharva Veda his name is prajapati and he is the creator according to shatapata brahmana and uoanishad verses and even according to rig veda hiranyagarbha sukta Brahma/prajapati is discribed as creator.even if you see vratya sukta or shri rudram in it Lord Shiva is creator,the reason maybe because in vedas when they praise a particular diety it is shown as supreme and others inferior,through it is a nice question cause there are some contradictions. Commented Sep 15, 2017 at 17:52
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    Ajay do you want to know contradictions in Scriptures about origin of universe OR origin of earth ? . In question heading and body are different. Commented Sep 16, 2017 at 5:26
  • @KarmanyaNanda Prajapati is not creator of world but instead he is creator of Ritual, devotional ways (yagya, murti puja all was started by him) and creator of Sabhyata. He is the one who taught man how to live. He taught how to do puja and ygya. He taught all things which is base of living in human life like collect money and property to survive. Means he taught human how to live. But he didn't create human. Brahma creates and Prajapati decides how they will live and what will be standard of every creature. He creates rules and apply on world.
    – Vishvam
    Commented Sep 16, 2017 at 8:46
  • @Rishabh from which scripture you are saying this?Shatapata brahmana clearly mentions that Prajapati is the creator of whole universe.He only existed in the beginning even hiranyagarbha sukta says that he has created all beings even attharva Veda mentions prajapati being the creator.In mahabharata the tittle of prajapati is given To Brahma,so they are identified same with different names. Commented Sep 16, 2017 at 8:55
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    @Rishabh the prajapti you have mentioned are different,they are called prajapatis like daksha etc.While the prajapti in vedas is Brahma,he is given the name of prajapti in Vedic verses because he is the first Prajapati of universe. Commented Sep 16, 2017 at 8:59

2 Answers 2


Here is what Adi Shankara says in his commentary regarding the apparent contradictions seen in creation doctrine:

It is not possible-- our opponent says--to prove either that Brahman is the cause of the origin, &c. of the world, or that all Vedânta-texts refer to Brahman; because we observe that the Vedânta-texts contradict one another. All the Vedânta-passages which treat of the creation enumerate its successive steps in different order, and so in reality speak of different creations. In one place it is said that from the Self there sprang the ether (Taitt. Up. II, 1); in another place that the creation began with fire (Ch. Up. VI, 2, 3); in another place, again, that the Person created breath and from breath faith (Pr. Up. VI, 4); in another place, again, that the Self created these worlds, the water (above the heaven), light, the mortal (earth), and the water (below the earth) (Ait. Âr. II, 4, 1, 2; 3). There no order is stated at all. Somewhere else it is said that the creation originated from the Non-existent. 'In the beginning this was non-existent; from it was born what exists' (Taitt. Up. II, 7); and, 'In the beginning this was non-existent; it became existent; it grew' (Ch. Up. III, 19, 1). In another place, again, the doctrine of the Non-existent being the antecedent of the creation is impugned, and the Existent mentioned in its stead. 'Others say, in the beginning there was that only which is not; but how could it be thus, my dear? How could that which is be born of that which is not?' (Ch. Up. VI, 2, 1; 2.) And in another place, again, the development of the world is spoken of as having taken place spontaneously, 'Now all this was then undeveloped. It became developed by form and name' (Bri. Up. I, 4, 7).--As therefore manifold discrepancies are observed, and as no option is possible in the case of an accomplished matter[240], the Vedânta-passages cannot be accepted as authorities for determining the cause of the world, but we must rather accept some other cause of the world resting on the authority of Smriti and Reasoning. To this we make the following reply. --Although the Vedânta-passages may be conflicting with regard to the order of the things created, such as ether and so on, they do not conflict with regard to the creator, 'on account of his being represented as described.' That means: such as the creator is described in any one Vedânta-passage, viz. as all-knowing, the Lord of all, the Self of all, without a second, so he is represented in all other Vedânta-passages also. Let us consider, for instance, the description of Brahman (given in Taitt. Up. II, 1 ff.). There it is said at first, 'Truth, knowledge, infinite is Brahman.' Here the word 'knowledge,' and so likewise the statement, made later on, that Brahman desired (II, 6), intimate that Brahman is of the nature of intelligence. Further, the text declares that the cause of the world is the general Lord, by representing it as not dependent on anything else. It further applies to the cause of the world the term 'Self' (II, 1), and it represents it as abiding within the series of sheaths beginning with the gross body; whereby it affirms it to be the internal Self within all beings. Again--in the passage, 'May I be many, may I grow forth'--it tells how the Self became many, and thereby declares that the creator is non-different from the created effects. And--in the passage, 'He created all this whatever there is'--it represents the creator as the Cause of the entire world, and thereby declares him to have been without a second previously to the creation. The same characteristics which in the above passages are predicated of Brahman, viewed as the Cause of the world, we find to be predicated of it in other passages also, so, for instance, 'Being only, my dear, was this in the beginning, one only, without a second. It thought, may I be many, may I grow forth. It sent forth fire' (Ch. Up. VI, 2, 1; 3), and 'In the beginning all this was Self, one only; there was nothing else blinking whatsoever. He thought, shall I send forth worlds?' (Ait. Âr. II, 4, 1, 1; 2.) The Vedânta-passages which are concerned with setting forth the cause of the world are thus in harmony throughout.--On the other hand, there are found conflicting statements concerning the world, the creation being in some places said to begin with ether, in other places with fire, and so on. But, in the first place, it cannot be said that the conflict of statements concerning the world affects the statements concerning the cause, i.e. Brahman, in which all the Vedânta-texts are seen to agree--for that would be an altogether unfounded generalization;--and, in the second place, the teacher will reconcile later on (II, 3) those conflicting passages also which refer to the world. And, to consider the matter more thoroughly, a conflict of statements regarding the world would not even matter greatly, since the creation of the world and similar topics are not at all what Scripture wishes to teach. For we neither observe nor are told by Scripture that the welfare of man depends on those matters in any way; nor have we the right to assume such a thing; because we conclude from the introductory and concluding clauses that the passages about the creation and the like form only subordinate members of passages treating of Brahman. That all the passages setting forth the creation and so on subserve the purpose of teaching Brahman, Scripture itself declares; compare Ch. Up. VI, 8, 4, 'As food too is an offshoot, seek after its root, viz. water. And as water too is an offshoot, seek after its root, viz. fire. And as fire too is an offshoot, seek after its root, viz. the True.' We, moreover, understand that by means of comparisons such as that of the clay (Ch. Up. VI, 1, 4) the creation is described merely for the purpose of teaching us that the effect is not really different from the cause. Analogously it is said by those who know the sacred tradition, 'If creation is represented by means of (the similes of) clay, iron, sparks, and other things; that is only a means for making it understood that (in reality) there is no difference whatever' (Gaudap. Kâ. III, 15).--On the other hand, Scripture expressly states the fruits connected with the knowledge of Brahman, 'He who knows Brahman obtains the highest' (Taitt. Up. II, 1); 'He who knows the Self overcomes grief' (Ch. Up. VII, 1, 3); 'A man who knows him passes over death' (Sve. Up. III, 8). That fruit is, moreover, apprehended by intuition (pratyaksha), for as soon as, by means of the doctrine, 'That art thou,' a man has arrived at the knowledge that the Self is non transmigrating, its transmigrating nature vanishes for him.

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    I'm not sure if this answers OP's question completely. Shankara's commentary appears to be about contradictions within the Upanishads which can be understood as 'merely for the purpose of teaching' whereas OP is quoting specific Vedic verses. Are you saying those Vedic verses are not meant to be taken literally? They too are meant for teaching something else? So, effectively, even though they contradict, ignore them? Commented Sep 18, 2017 at 19:30

The origin of universe is possibly not knowable.

As stated in various scriptures, the universe itself is the manifestation of formful(saguna) Brahman. Various sages have provided various theories around its creation. But since, Brahman itself is sages' own origin, may be due to that it's impossible to accurately define Brahman's own origin.
Similar to infinite recursion which happens when keeping 2 mirrors facing each other.

BG 10.2 - Neither the deities nor the great sages know My origin. In every way, I am the origin of the deities and the great sages.

Overal creation is said analogically to be an upside down pepul tree. Roots (origin) are upwards & the branches where humans existence comes is downwards. Veda-s merely are leaves of these branches:

BG 15.1 - The Blessed Lord said They say that the peepul Tree, which has its roots upward and the branches downward, and of which the Vedas are the leaves, is imperishable. He who realizes it is knower of the Vedas.
BG 15.2 - The branches of that (Tree), extending downwards and upwards, are strengthened by the 3 modes and have sense-objects as their seeds. Other roots, which are followed by actions, spread downwards in the human world

Yet this analogy is also not perfect:

BG 15.3 - Its form is not perceived here in that way; Neither its end, nor beginning, nor continuance [even] after cutting this Peepul whose roots are well developed, with the strong sword of detachment

The origin is knowable by none but originator:

BG 10.15 - O supreme Person, the Creator of beings, the Lord of beings, God of gods, the Lord of the worlds, You Yourself alone know Yourself by Yourself.

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