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Default Could We Have Been Lied To? (genesis 1-3)

June 2nd, 2009, 06:00
Originally Posted by Rithrandil View Post
The creation story is lifted from earlier religions. The flood is from Gilgamesh, etc. Even the Jesus story bears remarkable similarities to other religions that came before it.
I was just curious, I'm not religious personally. I'm also not too familiar with the timeline as far as which religions predate others.
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June 2nd, 2009, 06:51
Originally Posted by Thoth View Post
Here's a scary thought: Do so many cultures have flood myths because they all copied each other or do they have them because there really was one
What came first, religion or brains?
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June 2nd, 2009, 07:02
Originally Posted by Thoth View Post
Jesus searched online for eastern religions and copy pasted a bunch of it into the bible.

Here's a scary thought: Do so many cultures have flood myths because they all copied each other or do they have them because there really was one
Of course there was one. There were several, in fact. Civilization was born on floodplains. Simple statistics say that there's going to be a REALLY BIG flood every once in a blue moon, big enough that it'll feel like the whole world is flooded. Remember that back when these stories were first written, even the greatest kings only had an idea of the world that extended, oh, a few hundred miles in each direction.
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June 2nd, 2009, 07:06
Originally Posted by Damian Mahadevan View Post
I believe in a global flood. If there werent such a thing we would have trees older than 5k years old. That is my reasoning.
But we do have trees older than 5000 years old. This one's older than the world in your chronology — 9,550 years.

[ http://news.nationalgeographic.com/n…dest-tree.html ]
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June 2nd, 2009, 07:25
I dont trust national geographic, they have committed some frauds in the past. I have emailed a dendrochronologist recently and he says the oldest is just under 5k years old, i would be surprised if he hasnt heard about this. This is a different species and could possibly have gotten more rings in certain climate conditions, unlike the bristle cone pines that are very resistant to that sort of thing. Thing is I dont know. I am skeptical until it comes form a more trustworthy source. Still the same argument applies even if it is 10k years old, as far as i know trees dont die of old age.
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June 2nd, 2009, 07:30
I hate to do this to you, but im giving you a creation.com link. I am also confused why they carbon dated it instead of counting the rings.

http://creation.com/swedish-trees-ol…n-the-universe
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June 2nd, 2009, 09:49
Having read on the debate there's not much news in this article. If on begins to research what's really known by archeology and history, one will most likely run into the above ideas sooner or later.

Regarding genesis being wrong and flood myths being popular. Most cultures have their own creation story. Genesis is just one that got very popular for historical reasons (it spread to a subgroup who recruited the emperor over the greatest power in Europe at that time). It's also common that these creation stories include local phenomenons. The canaan region is rich of flood myths. Such flood myths do not exist elsewhere. But it's not just the flood myth that is duplicated from earlier cultures. Here's a short list of earlier myths now in Genesis;

* Ugarit. Plenty of themes in Genesis was found in the myths of a syrian tribe in Ras Shamra, city of Ugarit. Among them what might be the origin to the hebrew God and the character eve. There's also a flood myth that involves a "JV" (likely YHWH) and a Baal. In Ugarit the god "Elohim", JV, Ashera (Eve) and Baal are all separate gods.
* Gilgamesh epos have the Noah story that matches in so great detail the genesis flood myth that it leaves little room for saying no. In fact, the Gilgamesh version Utnapishtim reveals the secret behind an ancient error in Genesis 8:7-12. The author of genesis swapped the birds around and skipped one (a swallow) leading to inconsistencies (a world refilled with water after seconds). In Utnapishtim the birds are sent out in correct order (dove, swallow, crow). Appearently the author of genesis wanted to keep the dove for last and screwed up in the process.
* Sumerian flood myth with Ubar-Tutu or Ziusudra.
* Atrahasis, probably of sumerian origin, contains the chronological order of Genesis, including punishing humans as a reason for the flood.
* Enuma Elish, the babylonian creation epoch. Have a creation story that matches most details from first page of genesis in chronological order.
* Enki and Ninhursag, this sumerian myth seems to be the predecessor of garden of eden, including the tree of life, the snake, characters similar to Eve, Cain and Abel etc.
* Adapa, another sumerian myth, seem to carry the idea of eating forbidden food. When eaten they gain the gift of knowledge, but looses immortality. Adapa also have the predecessor to the tower of babylon, with a god who fools mankind into multiple languages so they doesn't understand one another.

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June 2nd, 2009, 09:52
As a horticulturist, I would say the reason we don't have trees older than 5k years is because people chop them down, they burn down, insects and diseases destroy them, ecosystems change, etc. Trees are not immortal, Damien. They do indeed die of old age, in the same way that people of extreme age die—gradually becoming weaker and more vulnerable to insects and disease or drought and adverse conditions. Some species live longer than others, like the bristlecone pine you mentioned, but everything living eventually dies.

I also think calling that Norway Spruce 9,550 years old is somewhat of a misnomer—they're not referring to an individual tree, but to a root system. That's kind of like saying because you can trace your direct geneology back for 500 years, you yourself are 500 years old.

Where there's smoke, there's mirrors.
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June 2nd, 2009, 10:44
Mags have a good point, trees have plenty of natural enemies and they also die of old age. To find a millenia-old tree you'd need to find a location remote enough to not have been logged, and find a specimen that has avoided forest fires (can easily be started by lightning), beavers, termites, rot and whatnot. Even if the trees avoid all that only a few species have the potential to live for thousands of years. I think our oldest tree trunks in Northern Europe are those of oaks, they are about a thousand years old, and look really wrinkled

EDIT: I am surprised that the same spruce root stock survived for that long as the spruce never struck me as particularly solid. Counting the age of a root stock rather than the stems allows for far older trees.

Originally Posted by Damian Mahadevan View Post
I dont believe that God would lie on any level. That is not the God i believe in. I believe in a God that is pure and self sacrificing and cannot stand evil. So hes definitely not a liar. IF the god of the current bible is indeed a liar, i need to search elsewhere for my god.
I am a practical atheist, but I dont see how this necessarily makes the deity a liar.

1) Speaking figuratively and in parables doesnt have to be lying but can be a pedagogic (as well as propagandistic) device. As a tool it is pretty neutral.

2) The assumption that whoever wrote the biblical texts down managed to nail them literally and didnt lose anything to editing (whether intended or not) seems somewhat naive.

Incidentally most non-literalist christian denominations buy these points one way or the other, including the Roman Catholic Church and our local Lutherans.
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June 2nd, 2009, 12:28
Originally Posted by Damian Mahadevan View Post
I believe in a global flood. If there werent such a thing we would have trees older than 5k years old. That is my reasoning.
There's no evidence for one. At all.
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June 2nd, 2009, 12:29
Originally Posted by Thoth View Post
Jesus searched online for eastern religions and copy pasted a bunch of it into the bible.
Yeah, cause that's totally what I said.


Originally Posted by Thoth View Post
Here's a scary thought: Do so many cultures have flood myths because they all copied each other or do they have them because there really was one
Local, large floods? Sure. One giant, world-spanning flood? No.
Last edited by Rithrandil; June 2nd, 2009 at 12:42.
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June 2nd, 2009, 12:32
Originally Posted by magerette View Post
I also think calling that Norway Spruce 9,550 years old is somewhat of a misnomer—they're not referring to an individual tree, but to a root system. That's kind of like saying because you can trace your direct geneology back for 500 years, you yourself are 500 years old.
You think? IMO this is a bit different — it's the same organism (the root system) growing a new organ (the visible tree), rather than an organisms begetting other organisms.

One of the things that occasionally keep me away at nights, though, is this question:

How old is an amoeba?
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June 2nd, 2009, 12:33
Originally Posted by Prime Junta View Post
You think? IMO this is a bit different — it's the same organism (the root system) growing a new organ (the visible tree), rather than an organisms begetting other organisms.
It reminds me of fungi. The fruit bodies (mushrooms) are fairly short-lived but the mycelium (corresponding to a root system) is pretty long lived and spreads over a large area. I think it is fair to consider anything growing from the same root stock one organism, it will have the same DNA. Offspring from seeds are on the other hand new individuals.

Originally Posted by Damian Mahadevan View Post
I hate to do this to you, but im giving you a creation.com link. I am also confused why they carbon dated it instead of counting the rings.

http://creation.com/swedish-trees-ol…n-the-universe
That link has some crap reasoning.

There are living trees that are thousands of years old, like California’s giant redwoods. But these are actually great evidence for the global Flood. Why? Because if something has survived for a few thousand years, it seems there is no reason why some of them should not still be alive after, say, 10 or 20 thousand years.
If some humans have survived for a few decades it seems there is no reason why some of them shouldn not be alive after, say, 100 or 200 years.

Bollocks of the first degree.
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June 2nd, 2009, 12:36
Originally Posted by Damian Mahadevan View Post
Still the same argument applies even if it is 10k years old, as far as i know trees dont die of old age.
Trees do die of old age. Their "immune systems" get weaker, they get attacked by fungi and other things, the wood weakens, and eventually they die. Different varieties of trees live different lengths of time.

(I'm not surprised by your reaction, by the way — I'm pretty certain that you'll find a way to reject any datum that conflicts with your religion; if all else fails, you'll just post an article that you haven't even read and don't understand, but believe anyway.)
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June 2nd, 2009, 12:41
Yeah, Damian. That link reminded me of people like Kent Hovind or "geerup" on youtube who claim that dinosaurs are just regular lizards that lived for hundreds of years and had "time to grow". I have to say once again, Damian, that nearly every view you have of the world is scientifically inaccurate.
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June 2nd, 2009, 13:06
Originally Posted by Prime Junta View Post
Trees do die of old age. Their "immune systems" get weaker, they get attacked by fungi and other things, the wood weakens, and eventually they die. Different varieties of trees live different lengths of time.

(I'm not surprised by your reaction, by the way — I'm pretty certain that you'll find a way to reject any datum that conflicts with your religion; if all else fails, you'll just post an article that you haven't even read and don't understand, but believe anyway.)
As a horticulturist, I would say the reason we don't have trees older than 5k years is because people chop them down, they burn down, insects and diseases destroy them, ecosystems change, etc. Trees are not immortal, Damien. They do indeed die of old age, in the same way that people of extreme age die—gradually becoming weaker and more vulnerable to insects and disease or drought and adverse conditions. Some species live longer than others, like the bristlecone pine you mentioned, but everything living eventually dies.

Fair enough. The more I know. But that tree from Sweden is a bit suss though, why not use dendrochronology to date it?
Last edited by Damian Mahadevan; June 2nd, 2009 at 13:22.
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June 2nd, 2009, 13:06
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
I was just curious, I'm not religious personally. I'm also not too familiar with the timeline as far as which religions predate others.
It's cool - not many people are aware of this (as is obvious by the general belief in these religions). The evidence is … overwhelming, though, that large aspects of these religions are taken from previous religions and myths.

If you want to talk about religious traditions/holidays, such as Easter or Christmas, the evidence is even more apparent!
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June 2nd, 2009, 13:09
Originally Posted by magerette View Post
I also think calling that Norway Spruce 9,550 years old is somewhat of a misnomer—they're not referring to an individual tree, but to a root system. That's kind of like saying because you can trace your direct geneology back for 500 years, you yourself are 500 years old.
Thanks for clearing that up.

EDIT:
You think? IMO this is a bit different — it's the same organism (the root system) growing a new organ (the visible tree), rather than an organisms begetting other organisms.

One of the things that occasionally keep me away at nights, though, is this question:

How old is an amoeba?
But then again they are saying the organ is x amount of years old.
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June 2nd, 2009, 13:20
Originally Posted by Prime Junta View Post
(I'm not surprised by your reaction, by the way — I'm pretty certain that you'll find a way to reject any datum that conflicts with your religion; if all else fails, you'll just post an article that you haven't even read and don't understand, but believe anyway.)
Um, i dont reject data but rather the interpretation of the data. Still I can see how i appear that way. If I was really such a person, i wouldnt be asking these questions.
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June 2nd, 2009, 13:26
Originally Posted by Damian Mahadevan View Post
Um, i dont reject data but rather the interpretation of the data. Still I can see how i appear that way. If I was really such a person, i wouldnt be asking these questions.
Well you have this atheist's respect for asking yourself the question of this thread, that is a pretty big step…
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