"Primeval Waters" Nun is the Name given to the state of being before The First Time (a metaphor for creation). Described in An's mythological cycle as "the waters," Nun lies inert, unending and indefinite, until Tem "rises" and "throws off" the waters to begin the act of creation. Nun is a sort of potential, "primordial soup" from which the Self-Created draws the necessary materials to create Its children Shu and Tefnut (air and moisture, the Biblical "firmament"), Who then create Geb (earth) and Nut (sky), thus beginning the cycle of matter and the reality in which humans find themselves a working part. Some myths state that eventually all things will return to the Nun, when they are completed; others state that the Nun is a continual state of nonbeing (like the Platonic world of ideas) surrounding the creations of Tem and from which all new creations (creation is an eternal process, not an event) continue to manifest. Nun, when personified, is referred to as the "Father of Fathers and the Mother of Mothers."