In the beginning there was nothing but a marshy waste, with no clearly defined earth or water. Olorun was the supreme being, and lived above the waste, in the sky. There were other gods who attended Olorun, including Orisha Nla (the Great God).
Olorun sent for Orisha Nla, and ordered him to create a world. Olorun gave him a shell full of magic earth, a pigeon and a five-toed hen to work with. Orisha Nla got to work organizing the marshy waste from Chaos into a world. He threw the earth down in a small patch, and the pigeon and the hen began to scratch at it. They scratched at the waste until land and sea were separate masses. In the process, his work was inspected by a chameleon and was approved by Olorun, after which Orisha Nla was instructed to complete the mission.
The first place to be created on Earth was called Ife-Ile (wide house). Even today, this is a sacred city for the Yoruban people.
The earth's creation took 4 days and on the fifth, Orisha Nla took a break. In memory of their creation, the Yorubans have a four-day work week and rest on the fifth.
Orisha Nla was then ordered to plant trees on earth. He made rain fall to water the seeds which grew into a large forest.
Olorun made the first people in Heaven. They were created with earth by Orisha Nla and were given life by Olorun. Orisha Nla wanted to know the secret of giving life, so he hid and watched as Olorun gave the people life. However, Olorun knew he was hiding and caused him to become unconscious so that, to this day, only Olorun is capable of giving people life.