From: Michael (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Thu Sep 11 2003 - 16:03:35 EDT
Debbie Mann wrote:
>John, the atheist who accosted our Christian list recently, and I have been
>corresponding off line. He is actually polite and does not appear to bite,
>or even rant uncontrollably as other atheists seem to do. He is looking for
>an apologist to argue the existence of God with him using logical methods.
>Is there anyone on the list up to being John's offline debate opponent?
I'm only recently on the list, but I'd be willing to try.
Should this be done on the list, or off, or off the list and then echoed
to the list? [I'd prefer on].
- Michael Rudmin
Also, it's looking like something I posted to this list didn't get through.
So I'm going to post it again, but maybe this doesn't belong here. But
you guys will find it interesting. I am guessing that it didn't go through
because I attached some figures, so if you want the figures, email me
with subject "Eden Pics", and I'll send them to you.
I was thinking about the supposed Noah's Flood (Black Sea
flood), and how it doesn't match the story of Noah very well.
Indeed, if you really want to see how badly it matches Noah's
story, one need look no farther than the account in the Epic of
Gilgamesh, to see that a very different idea is given.
That is not to say that the Epic of Gilgamesh is any more
"valid" than the Biblical account; indeed, it clearly isn't the
part that God wanted us to have in our Bible; but it is a parallel
story which indicates that perhaps something a little more
dramatic than the flooding of the Black Sea occurred.
But I live up in Lithuania, and I was thinking, though, that
when you have a large sea in a region, it moderates the
temperatures. Actually, things are a ton warmer when there
is a large body of water in the area, and the Black
Sea would have flooded from the Mediterranian Sea, so it
would probably be a good deal warmer. Or, to put it another
way, it was a good deal colder *before* the Black Sea filled.
That being the case, it is also likely that there was a different
stability point for the glaciers in the Taurus/Toros mountain
region. That is, they would have been much larger, and they
would have suffered significant melting.
So it occurred to me that you might well get a large river
coming out of the region of, say, Mount Ararat.
Now, this yields an interesting parallel to Genesis 2, for
Genesis 2 describes a very interesting, and unstable situation.
There is a river flowing out of Eden, a large river that splits
into four rivers: The Tigris, the Euphrates, The Pison, and the
Gihon. The Gihon goes around the kingdom of Cush; the Pison
goes around Havilah where onyx, bdellium, and very good gold
are found. I should also note that in some translations, Tigris
doesn't seem to come through well. Your own Bible also may
say "Ethiopia", not "Cush", but that is a more modern translation,
and I think it could be faulty.
That large river that splits into 4 is an unstable situation,
because it is not describing a delta. Rather, it is describing a
headwaters that is so new and wide, that it surrounds mountains.
Such a situation cannot last for long, because the river digs the
deepest channel where it flows the fastest, and thus it consolodates
its flows to a single path. It is only when it has spent most of its
energy and is loaded with mineral deposits to build up islands,
that it can form deltas. So in order to have a river as described,
you need a sudden supply of water, either due to glacial melting,
or due to rains, or both. Indeed, I could imagine a situation in
which a combination of both melts the glacier much more quickly,
resulting in a faster river.
For those who wish to jump ahead, I have sketched my basic
idea of where the river out of Eden may have been, in the
attachment. Understand that I don't have a good topographic
map of Turkey, and thus cannot tell what the actual course
would have been, but it's an approximate idea, very open to
Now, if we look at this map, you will notice that I placed Cush
in the location of the Old Hittite Kingdom, and Havilah where
Armenia is today. Well, looking at this website,
we see that Armenia produces lots of onyx and some very good
gold. Bdellium, I should note, has no good translation. But what
Very interestingly, at the center of the Old Hittite kingdom was a
city called "Kushdar", according to our Biblical maps. Upon that,
I suppose that an older kingdom in the region was Cush, and they
were conquered or driven out by the Hittites, and reformed near
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