Sunday, August 09, 2009

2348 B.C.

The biologist PZ MEyers, (in)famous for his "New Atheist" blog Pharyngula, was part of a group from the Secular Students Alliance who visited the Creationist "Museum" in Kentucky. I will leave you to read about the experience on his blog, but I was struck by something Myers describes as "A little taste of strangeness": All ofthe dinosaur exhibits carry geological strata information on the fossils (Jurassic, Upper Cretatous, etc) but all of the fossils are listed as dating from "~2348 B.C."

Why 2348 B.C.? Well, just do a quick Google search. You will see that it is the date of the Great Flood, according to Bishop Ussher's dating system, which he published between 1642 and 1644. You will also see that the Internet is chockablock with Fundmentalist crap that carries that dating system - books, wall posters, websites, materials for home schooling, etc.

Just out of curiosity, what do we know of the world of 2348 B.C., when our Conservative Christian friends tell us the population of the earth was wiped out, with only 8 survivors? Here is what Wikipedia has:
Under "Significant Persons" -
Boy, those Egyptians and Sumerians came back in a hurry, especially considering Noah and his crew were on a mountain side in Armenia just 35 years before Pepi II takes the throne! And what about those Chinese, maintaining records despite the worldwide flood? However, to be fair there is a flood mentioned as occurring in the time of Emperor Yao. Probably there was a devastating flood during this period, or a few generations previously, the memory of which was handed down trough oral tradition and embroidered until it became the Great Flood of the Bible, along with several other similar legends. But no, the human population was not entirely wiped out in 2348 B.C., and neither were those poor dinosaurs.

2 comments:

snsb18 said...

Thank you for this. It was just what I was looking for.

G Zazzo said...

It's foolish to think that bible chronology and evolutionary chronology can be compared. Either one or the other can be true. If you were looking for agreement the world is millions of years old, and that ancient cultures evolved over thousands of years you can't rest assured that is the mainstream accepted teaching. But it's foolish to compare that to biblical timelines. The dating of ancient cultures, is based on carbon dating which assumes the world evolved for millions of years. THE BIBLE does not accept evolution as a model of creation so of course it won't align to those timelines. IF YOU THINK "what we know" is somehow accurate then you are fooling yourself and placing blind trust in science without understanding how little we know of those periods, and how "surprised" we are of the sudden emergence of civilisation, writing, and language, and the sudden spread of animals from the middle east across the globe. None of this is to be expected based on evolutionary theories, which is why they are surprised.