Atum (Itm), often called "Father of the Gods," was the first god of creation and head of the Ennead (initial nine gods) in the Heliopolitan tradition. He was most often depicted in the likeness of a king, as a fully human man wearing the double crown of Upper and Lower Egypt, though with a uniquely-shaped beard. Atum's principal geographic centers were at Heliopolis, Ain Shems/Matariya and Pithom (Per-Tem).
In the cosmogony of the Heliopolitan Ennead, the creator-god Atum(-Re) is said to have distinguished himself from the watery chaos that was nonexistence. In the process of separating from the watery abyss, Atum transformed himself from one entity into three through the creation of his offspring. His twins, Shu and Tefnut, are traditionally described as dry air and moisture, respectively, though their precise natures are debatable. Shu and Tefnut formed the first male–female union in the creation of their children Geb (earth) and Nut (sky), whose four children completed the Ennead, or "nine." Atum created Shu and Tefnut either through masturbation or by expectorating and spitting these deities out of his mouth.
Atum was often associated with the sun god Re and his various forms (see Re And Re Horakhty). In particular, his solar form was most often that of the dying, setting sun. In his aspect as the elderly, dying sun, Atum is depicted as either a ram-headed man or an elderly man with a walking stick. In addition to his anthropomorphic forms, Atum had zoomorphic forms, such as that of a scarab beetle or a snake.
The creation and continual maintenance of an ordered world from primordial chaos was the foundation upon which virtually all ancient Egyptian myth a
Shu ('air'), in Egyptian myth, was the son of Atum and brother of Tefnut. In some accounts he was born after Atum masturbated; in others...
Atum ('totality'), in Egyptian myth, was both primordial Chaos and the creator-god who emerged from it. In one version of the creation-myth,...