It took forever to create the universe. Time was easy; matter was complicated. Matter distorted time, slowing it in places where too much—or not enough—matter converged into a matter-soup or a matter-absence. It took forever to create the universe, but he fixed time afterwards, so that it didn’t take forever at all. Blink, and you missed it.
He almost did.
It was a cold universe, so he set fires going. They raged hot, angry, and very nearly consumed all the matter he’d made. He blew out the fires, then made them smaller. He created matchsticks, plucked off their heads, and sprinkled them around the universe. They didn’t burn for very long, but then, wasn’t that relative? And they looked so beautiful in the seconds before they finally went out.
Now the universe was warm, but it was boring. Matter moved around according to the laws he’d dictated. He wished he’d given all things different laws to obey. Suddenly—in the space of a million years—a thought occurred. He would create a different type of matter, and he would call it life, and he would give it different laws; laws which would not constrain, but liberate.
He scattered billions of gigantic, pinhead-sized marbles around the matchstick fires of the universe, and toyed with them until they were just right. It took a very long time for anything exciting to happen with the great life experiment—ten or fifteen seconds, at least. Finally, his patience bore fruit. Literally. Fertile gardens covered his worlds, and he wasn’t exactly sure where they’d come from.
Well, that’s enough of that! he thought. My universe is perfect.
But… something was missing. He could feel it. He’d laboured since the beginning of time—about twenty minutes ago—yet had nobody else to share his creation with. Nobody to tell him how wonderful and amazing he was for creating such perfect things as time and matter and life.
So, God created Mankind.