The Flood

Dave Washburn dwashbur at nyx.net
Mon Sep 25 11:48:00 EDT 2000


Walter,
> 
> I am not aware of this latest information. I am aware that a book was
> recently released claiming that the basis of Noah's Flood was a change in
> water levels of the Black Sea. But this is not in the area of Shuruppak in
> Lower Mesopotamia, where the earliest Fllod story is situated in the
> Sumerian account of the Flood and its later Babylonian spin-offs, including
> the biblical. 

Once again we have several assumptions here.  First, we don't 
know that the Sumerian is the earliest flood story.  It's the earliest 
surviving flood story that we have found.  Second, it's pure 
assumption to refer to the biblical account as a Babylonian spin-off. 
I know this is what the conventional wisdom of the history-of-
religions school says, but it's by no means certain and without a 
host of other unsupportable assumptions, it's not in the least 
provable.  The fact is that we don't know where the nearly-global list 
of flood traditions originated, since such stories are found all over 
the world in cultures that had no conceivable contact with Sumeria. 
There is no scientific reason why the story couldn't have originated 
in a region such as the Black sea (or somewhere on the other side 
of the globe, for that matter) and migrated to the Fertile Crescent.  
The fact that the Sumerian story is the earliest mesopotamian one 
that we have proves nothing about the origins of the idea itself.

Because Humanist scholars understand the biblical account to
> derive from the Sumerian and Babylonian accounts, most Humanist scholars *do
> not take seriously* the claims of a change in water levels of the Black Sea
> being behind the biblical account.

And the humanist scholars don't really have a leg to stand on in 
this idea, because it is just as easy to understand that the 
Sumerian and Babylonian accounts derived from an earlier form of 
the biblical one, or that they all derived from a common source 
much earlier than any of the surviving records.  You place far, far 
too much faith in humanist scholarship, because you yourself have 
shown again and again that most of it is built on unsupported 
assumptions.

Dave Washburn
http://www.nyx.net/~dwashbur
"Éist le glór Dé."



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