A fable of ancient days...
Once upon a time, 70 or 80 centuries ago, a young minstrel was walking through a forest when he saw an old man sitting on a mossy hummock, resting his back against a fallen tree trunk and gazing out over the sea. He greeted the old man respectfully, as courtesy required.
"Good morning venerable sir", he said. "Are you well?"
"Well enough to sit in this comfortable spot to admire this wonderful world in all its beauty and variety. If you have time, sit here beside me and I will tell you how this all came to be."
In those days people had nothing much beside time so the minstrel seated himself and took a handful of mushrooms from his bag and passed half of them to the old man.
"Thank you kindly. Here is the story of how this all came into being." The man waved his arm to encompass the woods, the rocky shore, the sea and the sky. "In the beginning there was nothing."
"Where was this nothing?" asked the young man.
"I know that everything has to be somewhere so why isn't nothing nowhere?"
"In every place there was there was no thing."
"Imagine that. How could a person tell one place from another in that case?"
"Well actually there were no places either, in the beginning."
"This is very confusing, but pray continue."
"Suddenly into this void was introduced a burst of intense radiation."
"It is like light"
"Oh. Please continue."
"Space began an exponential expansion."
"What is space?"
"Space is a collection of places."
"Uh...alright. What is an exponential?"
"I have an idea. Let's begin again."
"If we must." The poet sighed.
So the old man began his story in a way the poet could understand. "In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the void. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the void. And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. And God saw that the light was good. And God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Radiation, and the darkness he called Space. And the time of an epoch passed."
"How was that explanation?" asked the old man.
"That was much clearer." said the poet.
"All right then. Write that down so you don't get it all mixed up and I will tell you the rest of the story."
"What is the meaning of 'Write that down'?" asked the poet.
"Never mind." said the old man. He finished the story and walked away muttering to himself, "Ah well, they will figure it out for themselves in time." Then he vanished with a small "pop".