Mankind has found nature to be a source of endless fascination. Ever since the human brain evolved to a more advanced stage, humans have been playing around with and trying to figure out what nature is and how it works.
This sort of curiosity has been with us since before the agricultural revolution of ten thousand years ago, when agriculture became dominant as opposed to hunting. We find records of this kind of curiosity from ancient times.
In the three to five thousand years old Nasadiya Suktam, one finds expression given to this quest to understand where creation came from.
nāsa̍dāsī̱nno sadā̍sītta̱dānī̱m nāsī̱drajo̱ no vyo̍mā pa̱ro yat |
kimāva̍rīva̱ḥ kuha̱ kasya̱ śarma̱nnaṁbha̱ḥ kimā̍sī̱dgaha̍naṁ gabhī̱ram ||1||
na mṛ̱tyurā̍sīda̱mṛta̱ṁ na tarhi̱ na rātryā̱ ahna̍ āasītprake̱taḥ |
ānī̍davā̱taṁ sva̱dhayā̱ tadekaṁ̱ tasmā̍ddhā̱nyanna pa̱raḥ kiñca̱nāsa̍ ||2||
tama̍ āasī̱ttama̍sā gū̱ḻhamagre̍’prake̱taṁ sa̍li̱laṁ sarva̍mā i̱daṁ |
tu̱cchyenā̱bhvapi̍hitaṁ̱ yadāsī̱ttapa̍sa̱stanma̍hi̱nā jā̍ya̱taika̍ṁ || 3 ||
This can be roughly translated to:
Neither existence nor nonexistence was there. Neither matter nor space around
What covered it, where it was and who protected?
Why, that plasma, all pervading, deep and profound? ||1 ||
Neither death nor immortality was there. And there was neither day nor night
But for that breathless one breathing on its own
There was nothing else, surely nothing ||2||
It was darkness concealed in darkness. And an uninterrupted continuum of fluid
Out came in material form and shape
That one lying deep inside, on its own intent. ||3||
– Rig Veda, 10.129.1-3