Subject: Biology and creation
Organization: UTexas Mail-to-News Gateway
}Life is too complex to have happened by chance.
}Mutations are almost always harmful.
}Mutations rarely occur.
}3000 years was time enough for all languages, religions to develop.
}Complex organs couldn't have arisen from a single mutation
}Evolution doesn't explain the simultaneous origin of two traits
}Mendelian inheritance says that recessive characters reappear
}Hybrids are infertile, so a newly evolved individual couldn't breed.
}Evolution doesn't explain personality, emotion, reason, conscience, etc.
}"No people of English descent are more distantly related..."
}The animals couldn't have distributed themselves all over the globe.
}evolution doesn't make sense
}Evolution doesn't explain abiogenesis or how genes are expressed.
}half of the amino acids should be right-handed
}changes calling for numerous coordinated innovations
>The puzzle of how organs, once evolved, come to be lost (degeneration).
}The failure of some organisms to evolve at all.
}No new phyla, classes, or orders have appeared.
}The occurrence of parallel evolution, in which similiar structures evolve
}The existence of long-term trends (orthogenesis).
}Pre-adaptation: Organs appear before they are needed.
}"Overshoot" or evolutionary "momentum" occurs.
}How do organs, once evolved, come to be lost?
}Why did man lose his hair and tail?
}Over-specialization with no adaptive value.
}Can this all be just mutation and natural selection?
}mitochondrial DNA showes that mankind arose from *one* female.
}chaos theory & biology
}The fundamental principle of evolution contradictory to established laws
}There is no evidence of biological life anywhere else in the universe.
}vestigal organs are probably the results of mutational changes
}Embryology offers testimony to a great Designer
}Similiarities are explained as made by the hand of a common Designer.
}All the great phyla appear quite suddenly in the fossil record.
}what is known to be true about evolution?
}Why are men alone so murderous of their own species?
}Misc biblical wonderings...
}Geographic Distribuion of Quadrupeds
}we have never seen any natural processes which result in a complexity
}- Life is too complex to have happened by chance.
The theory of evolution doesn't say it did happen by chance. This argument
completely ignores natural selection.
Life in Darwin's Universe
G. Bylinsky, Omni Sept 79
The Evolution of Ecological Systems
May, Scientific American, Sept 1978
Chemical Evolution and the Origin of Life
Dickerson, Scientific American, Sept 1978
The Evolution of the Earliest Cells
Schopf, Scientific American, Sept 1978
The Evolution of Multicellular Plants and Animals
Valentine, Scientific American, Sept 1978
} Mutations are never benefical
The textbook example of the effects of radiation upon genes is the old
"carnation seeds exposed to radiocobalt". Clearly some of the flowers
produced are prettier than the originals. Therefore, the "never" is
}- Mutations are almost always harmful.
Note: "almost". A lot happen in a large population over long times.
}- Mutations rarely occur.
Note: "Rarely". A lot happen in a large population over long times.
} - 3000 years was time enough for all languages, religions to develop.
Actually the premise is false. The Sino-Tibetan family of languages is
distinct from the Indo-European family of languages, which English seems
to have been derived from. Considering how long ago the 50 arguments were
written (was it around 1930?), this ethnocentrism is not surprising.
}- Complex organs couldn't have arisen from a single mutation, and
} just part of the organ is useless. Favorite examples are eyes and
} insect wings.
there have fairly good descriptions, on the net, of how
eyes could have evolved, and of how bird lungs could have
evolved. These were nice rebuttals of the claim that
"it wasn't useful until finished, so it couldn't have got
And how many of these "numerous coordinated innovations" can be caused by
one change? Check out, for instance, the effect of changing the age at
which bone growth stops in human beings.
There *are* semi-venemous snakes, and in fact the
issue was discussed earlier how some snakes "drip" the venomous saliva
while ones with more developed systems "inject" the saliva via hollow
teeth. Whales have semi-legs (ok, so they're not fish). How about the
cooperating jawbones that have slowly become our hearing mechanisms,
seen to be incrementally represented from reptilian jawbones.
The complete developmental flowchart of the nematode worm--what cells
divide to form what other cells all the way from the 1-cell egg to
the thousand-cell adult--has been determined. It contains numerous
examples of repeated tricks that look very much like subroutines.
For example (this is from memory and may not be precise) there is
a patten of a cell dividing twice to form two muscle cells, one
neuron and one cell which dies that occurs dozens of times in the
worm's development, not always in exactly the same situation--
different kinds of nerve cells are produced--but with exactly the
same pattern (that is, it is the most posterior cell which dies,
and so forth).
People often assume that to evolve a new structure requires new
code. In this case at least, however, a new nerve with attendant
muscle fibers could be made (and there are mutants which do this)
just by triggering this subroutine in a cell which normally doesn't
} The instinct of Animals: proves wisdom of a "higher order".
Again, argument by design. The complexity and specialization of
characters is evidence of a designer, in this view.
Proves that it something stupid is wired in you don't get descendants.
}- Mendelian inheritance says that recessive characters reappear, and thus we
} should expect humans with characteristics of apes.
They do. Tails, for instance.
And other "ape" traits that happen to also be "human traits".
Like toes, body hair,...
This disregards the basic mechenisms of natural selection and
genetics. It makes the wrong assumption that ape-like
characters are recessive and that all of the traits in the
ancestor population are present but usually unexpressed in the
supposed descendant population. Neither idea is true.
}- Hybrids are infertile, so a newly evolved individual couldn't breed.
Hybrids are often not fertile or robust. They may be desirable to
man if man amde, but they may not succeed in an evolutionary
The premise is incorrect. First, what is meant by "hybrid" is unclear
in this context - is it a hybrid only if it is infertile? And even in
those cases in which the offspring is usually infertile, that is not
always the case. As witnessed the horse and the donkey.
It is not individuals that evolve but populations. A population
evolves by gradual changes in gene frequency until it becomes
a distinct species that is no longer capable of interbreeding
with similar populations that shared a common ancestor. All of
the individuals within the population can mate successfully with
each other so there is no problem with "hybrids". There are quite
a few examples of different populations of the same species which
have trouble interbreeding, in other words the hybrids are not
viable. These populations are evolving and may become separate
species. It is a common mistake to assume that a new species
begins when an individual "mutates" or "evolves" in a single
step - this is simply not how evolution works.
}- Evolution doesn't explain personality, emotions, abstract reason,
} conscience, etc.
The Evolution of Behavior
Smith, Scientific American, Sept 1978
R. A. Freitas, Analog Apr 81
Directly Interacting Extra-terrestrial Technological Communities
Viewing, JBIS, vol 28, pp 735-755, 1975
Computer Simulation of Cultural Drift: Limits on Interstellar Colonization
Bainbridge, JBIS, vol 37, pp 420-429, 1984
The Improbability of Bahavioural Convergence in Aliens - Behavioural
Implications of Morphology
Coffey, JBIS, vol 38, pp 515-520, 1985
The climatic background to the birth of civilization
Lamb, Advancement of Science vol 25 pp 103 - 120 1968
}- "No people of English descent are more distantly related than thirtieth
} cousin," which doesn't allow enough time for evolution.
Incorrect argument. The island population of Great Britian
might well have interbreeded more than is the case if it
were mixed with the rest of the world's human population, if
you are inclined to believe Davenport's claim at all.
}- The animals couldn't have distributed themselves all over the globe.
This is written at the time Wagener proposed Continebtal Drift
for the first time. He is rejected by the geologists of the day,
but now Plate Tectonics is well accpeted among geologists and
is used to construct paleobiogeography that explains fossil
The Supercontinent Cycle
Nance, Worsley, & Moody, Scientific American, July 1988
Alfred Wegener and the Hypothesis of Continental Drift
A. Hallam, Scientific American Feb 1975
And like horses (that man transported), camels, pandas, kangaroos,
marsupials,.. In fact, this supports the evolutionary postulates in that
the distribution matches transportation capabilities.
What is more interesting is why are not animals everywhere? If they all
got themselves originated from one place (did this twice, supposidely -
everyone was originally present in Eden for the naming and everything
was together again in the ark) why are not marsupials found everywhere?
Ibid old world vs. new world species.
} Geographic Distribuion of Quadrupeds
Since the creationists (from the biblical account) would have had EVERY animal
in the same place (twice, in fact. Once for the naming in Eden, once again
for the rescue in the arc.) why are the quadrupeds distributed so differently?
There are a number of large animals that are strictly on one continent, unless
somebody moved them (in fairly recent recorded history). They could NOT have
gotten there on their own RECENTLY (evolved there, yes), nor could a selective
extinction removed every individual of the opposite set. Please explain:
New World Only: Old World Only
Sapajous (Monkeys) Horse, zebra
sagoins (monkeys) sheep, goats, antelopes
Opossum wild boar
Cougar, jaguar panther, leopard
Coatis hyena, civet
Stinking weasels porcupine, hedgehog
Agoutis apes, baboons, true monkeys
Armadillos scaley lizard
detached species detached species
}- Vestigial organs: "If the perfect organ were better than the rudimentary
} organ, how can man be the 'survival of the fittest'?"
This is the appeal to progress and perfection that biases
alot of thinking about evolution, even by some biologists
of the past. The changes seen are just adaptations of
existing structures, not perfections or progress toward a goal.
Note: "fittest" is not "optimal".
} Embryology: "it is hard to see why the history of the species should
} be repeated by the embryo."
This is similar to the argument used by Bob Bales that it is hard
to see evolution in the fossil or living evidence. The problem
with this claim is that the understanding of what you would
look for comes from first looking at living things, fossils, and
in this case embryos. You must know how to describe these things
in some detail before you can decide if the claims that similar
structures indicate common ancestry, or that embryonic stages
mimic ancestrial forms. "It is hard ", means you haven't looked.
Present an objection based on what all agree is evidence.
That is more a function of his "hard to see" than why it does.
} A staggering speculation: essentially that evolution doesn't make
} sense given the lake of common animals between the major groups.
This doesn't make sense. The "major groups" are definied by human
classifications that often are there for ancestrial reasons that
support evolution (via the "family trees") or are fairly arbitrary
(for instance, by location or discoverer) and make perfect sense.
}- Evolution doesn't explain abiogenesis or how genes are expressed.
To the creationists. And it does explain how to study the unknown,
rather than bowing out.
}- If life arose by chance, half of the amino acids should be right-handed; in
} fact, all are left-handed.
Once the preference for one enantiomer over another gets started in nature,
it is relatively easy to see how this preference is perpetuated. Biological
reactions work much like machines having templates, stamping out the preferred,
and ONLY the preferred configuration generation after generation after
As to how one became initially started, there are many possibilities:
1. Luck. The first one to form just happened to be L, and then the rest
2. There may be some effect during formation due to coriolis force or the
(hemisphere dependent) magnetic fied (as lightening went DOWN, the effect
may be polarized)
3. Quantitative calculations indicate that the fundamentally left-handed
neutral-weak force with the electromagnetic force could introduce an
energy preference (very slight). Aside from any steric preferences, one
form could be energetically more stable than the other.
William C. McHarris
Professor of Chemistry and of Physics and of
Astronomy at Michigan State University
"Handedness in Nature"
January 1986 Analog
} Mathematical probability: "it is so improbable that one and only
} one species out of 3,0000,000 should develop into man, that it
} certainly was not the case".
Whence the 3,000,000 number, and how is the "improbability" assigned?
Some say inevitable...
If 500 developed into man, how would you tell?
Besides, given the way evolution works, one would dominate and 499 would
have (while developing) be suppressed, quite likely into extinction.
The "less successful" are extinct or in zoos.
}4) The repeated occurrence of changes calling for numerous coordinated
} innovations, both at the level of organs and of complete organisms.
First, how do you determine that "numerous coordinated innovations" are
required? That may merely be your evaluation. For instance, some of the
poisonous snakes - fangs & poison glands. A Gila monster has poison
glands with no fangs, and there are snakes with furrowed fangs with
no poison glands.
fish to land animal - legs and lungs. The mudpuppy is a fish without
lungs that goes on the land, and the ceoclanth (sp) has almost legs
with no lungs. And then there is the African Lungfish, the
floridian walking catfish,...
Coral snakes (southern US) don't have a very sophisticated delivery
system - they also chew on their victims to deliver the poison. I'm
not very familiar with the anatomy of a coral snake, but it does not
have the usual "fangs" associated in the popular mind with a poisonous
snake - as I recall there is just a small sac or pore at the base of
what look like ordinary reptilian teeth.
The last time I studied poisonous snakes (some years ago), it was thought
that poison delivery had evolved several times, independently, in snakes.
This was based on differences in toxins and in delivery systems, as well
as its occurance in otherwise distantly related snakes, all of which have
closely similar non-poisonous forms. The delivery systems cover the whole
range from the simple, rather typical, teeth of the coral snake to the
elaborate, retractile, tubular fangs of pit-vipers. Some have slightly
elongate "fangs" with simple grooves on one side, for instance. Thus,
we can see almost the entire range of intermediate anatomies in evolving
fangs purely in *living* species. Gap?? What gap? We do not even need
the fossils, which we also have.
And how many of these "numerous coordinated innovations" can be caused by
one change? Check out, for instance, the effect of changing the age at
which bone growth stops in human beings.
This needs to be elaborated. If a genome is being stressed to some
metastable level where its states can multiply, then rapid changes to more
than one structure in the organism can occur simutaneously.
>11) The puzzle of how organs, once evolved, come to be lost (degeneration).
Evolution operating on the amplification and dimminution of structures
is well known. The appearence of vestigal structures, at all, reflects on
the use of prexisting developmental pathways, rather than on the
purposefulnessor efficiency of the process.
}- The speed at which evolution occurred varies.
Why is that a problem? You change the mutation rate and the selection rate
and the change rate also alteres.
}12) The failure of some organisms to evolve at all.
There are no known examples of organisms that have not evolved
over a period of time and this includes cockroaches, lungfish,
lampreys, sharks, bacteria, and all other organisms that some
people claim are "frozen in time". Some of these species appear
to be morphologically similar to ancestors that lived in the
past but evolution is much more than external appearance. When
the structure of their genes and proteins are examined it becomes
obvious that they have evolved at the molecular level. In fact
the rate of evolution of these species is similar to that of
species whose external appearance has changed more drastically.
It is incorrect to claim that some organisms have not evolved
simply because their external morphology has not changed.
}- The existence of long-term trends (orthogenesis).
So? Study any climatology? The environment has some VERY long-term
}- Pre-adaptation: Organs appear before they are needed.
Now, how do you tell this???
}- "Overshoot" or evolutionary "momentum" occurs.
A not uncommon problem with non-linear search routines, and with systems
with very long delay times in the feebdack.
}- How do organs, once evolved, come to be lost?
"Use it or lose it" is a popular expression which may help the understanding.
Maintaining something is a drain on materials and energy. Selection would go
against a disadvantageous drain.
} Why did man lose his hair and tail?
Note that hair and tails ARE still present. The selection
process is a statistical phenomena.
There is a theory that sometime within Man's evolutionary past he had an
aquatic phase. This is upheld by:
a. The layer of fat beneith the skin is more characteristic of
b. The pattern described by the hair remaining on the body describes
fairly closely what would be a flow pattern. Also, the pattern of
denser hair (top of head, chin, pubic region) matches the marine
c. Humans have a diving reflex like that of the semi-aquatic mammals
that live in cold climates. When the face hits cold water, the
entire metabolism slows and the interior distribution of the blood
flows. This has been observed in numerous near-drownings in cold
water (it doesn't seem to cut in on warm water).
Thus, we have the same amount of hair (almost) as any other marine mammal.
And for the exact same reasons. We just didn't have a long enough marine
phase for further adaptions (lose arms & legs).
}- Over-specialization with no adaptive value.
How do you determine this?
Besides, most nonlinear search routines I am familiar with have a tendency
The process is not particularly efficient or purposeful.
}Can this all be just mutation and natural selection?
Two points: first, although Darwin invoked only variation and selection,
modern evolutionary theory also gives a very important role to genetic
drift, the occurance of changes due to chance fluctuations in small
populations. This force can work in the opposite direction than
selection, and can override selection if the population is small enough.
(Brown mice do better in the wild than white, but if I start with
only two of each in an area I will end up with only whites some of
Second, "mutation" can cover some things which are much more
powerful than single changes in genes--specifically duplication
of genes and merging of two genes into a new one. These mechanisms
can produce new yet highly non-random genes.
}the scientific discovery (not creationtific discovery) a few years
}back that mitochondrial DNA was identical in all people of various
}ancestory >and thus showed that mankind arose from *one* female.
First, mitochondrial DNA is NOT identical in all humans. However
the differences can be used to construct a family tree of sorts,
and the most reasonable interpretation of the data is that all
modern humans inherited their mitochondria from one woman, dubbed
Eve (possibly to bait creationists), who lived (I think) around
200 Kyears ago.
(The mutation rate observed for the mitochondrial DNA was used to establish
the times involved.)
Second, the fact that the mitochondria of all of us can be traced
to one woman does not mean we arose solely from her-- it just
means that she's one of our common ancestors.
The maternal inheritance of mitochondria is analogous to the
inheritance of last names in our paternalistic society.
The point is, there may have been many contemporaries of "Eve" who
are also common ancestors of ours-- she just happens to be at the
node of our common maternal line. If a consistant paternalistic
society had existed throughout human history, (and nobody ever
changed their names) we would probably all have the same last name;
this would not mean that the first man to have this name was solely
responsible for the human race, just that he would be at the node
of our common paternal line.
> As far as the brain obeying certain chaotic processes, the
> brain is too structured and controlled to allow anything
> like that to occur. Biological processes are very closely
> controlled in the body and in the brain. That is necessary
> for survival. Reflexes are something the brain cannot
> control. Your heart beats regularly and you breathe in your
> sleep. Your brain releases hormones at just the right moment
> to allow you to run away from a lion, or, when cornered,
> fight off an attacker with more strength than you thought you
> had. When you consider the mind as it is usually defined
> (the thinking, conscious part of the brain), it must also
> function properly at all times, or you would not be able
> to survive. Evolutionary pressures would not favor a mind
> which works on a process based on chaos theory.
The connection of chaos with complex real living systems is circumstancial,
but suggestive. I do not have a firm demonstration that full-blown living
processes are adeqately described by systems of nonlinear differential
equations. Two examples I have heard about, I do not have references, are
human brain waves can be modeled with a strange attractor, and a good
model of cardiac electrical function and sudden failure has been built
}The fundamental principle of evolution - the concept of development, with
}increasing organization and complexity - seems to be essentially
}contradictory to the impregnably established laws of energy conservation
huh? If by "development" he means adaption to the environment I have no
idea what "increasing organization and complexity" is fundamental for.
And maybe by "deterioration" he means "entrophy or enthalpy"?
}There is not the slightest genuine evidence of biological life as we
}understand it anywhere else in the universe.
There are a LOT of complex chemicals of extraterrestrial origins composed
of carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, and I think even a bit of sulfur. And the
Viking has found some odd reactions. And if you don't mind taking
environmental conditions more alien than mars as "elsewhere", I have seen
some dandy pictures of things that sure look like life in eternal
blackness, no oxygen, hotter than a pot of boiling water,...
}vestigal organs are probably the results of mutational changes which, as
}we have seen, are usually deteriorations.
Also know as "adaptions", right? Thanks. Whale legs are definitely an
adaption to their current environment. Thank-you.
}Embryology, instead of supporting evolution, actually
}offers abundant testimony to a great Designer and does not in any way
}give countenance to theories of materialistic origin and development.
How odd... Same data, different conclusion.
}Similiarities (embryology & comparative anatomy) are more reasonably
}explained in terms of origin at the hand of a common Designer.
An odd definition of "reasonable"...
}what is known to be true about evolution?
I am not sure what you mean by "KNOW". None of this is divine
revelation. But I am as sure about the statement "There is
plentiful genetic variation in natural populations", having
worked first-hand with the data supporting it, as I am of
just about anything else in the world. And I am as sure of
the statement "Selection can change the frequencies of variants",
since I've done computer simulation to test it. That's most
of evolutionary theory right there.
}Why are men alone so murderous of their own species?
We are not alone. Most social animals seem to have some similiar sorts
of behaviors. When a male baboon displaces the old dominant male, young
baboons must watch their ass, as the new dominant male will often attempt
to kill them.
The same thing happens with lions, I believe.
}we have never seen any natural processes which result in a complexity
This is easy. Are you familiar with a small creature called a "Volvox"?
This is a small spherical animal that lives in the water and is made up
of individual cells of algae.
Separate algae cells have been observed organizing into a Volvox, with
the advantage of being able to propel itself in a way similar to an
octopus, and capture food inside the sphere. The algae cells operate in
a unified manner, just as the cells in a larger organism do.
Here is a clear example of increased complexity for the sake of
survival. Since mutation is factual (i.e. we have observed mutation, so
it is not conjecture), why do you find it so hard to believe that
increasingly complex organizations of cells, combined with favorable
mutations, can result in a higher form of life?
I have a biological example. The cat in my house has a pair of extra toes
growing inward on both of its forepaws. This is not unknown, and I
have seen it before. Even more interesting, I have seen the cat use those
extra toes as a human would use a thumb to grip small objects, such as
a penny, in a manner that a cat with ordinary forepaws could not.
A new part, adapted from an old part that all others
of the species has. A new ability that others of the species doesn't have.
An increase in complexity in a biological context.
--- Squish v1.01
* Origin: Universal Electronics Inc [714 939-6401] HST/DS (1:103/208)
To: All Msg #307, Jun-23-93 08:13AM
Subject: The Flood and creation
Organization: UTexas Mail-to-News Gateway
}Subject: Noah's Ark - the construction problems
}What to leave behind
}Subject: the issue of marine animals being left behind
}The Noah's Ark Myths
}misc concerning the flood
} hydraulic sorting
} timing problems
} folded rocks show that it was done when they were soft
By Davis A. Young, a conservative evangelical writer who is also a
geologist. Autor of two books devoted to separating evangelical
theology from young-earth and creation-science theories.
"What is much more likely to undermine Christian fath is the dogmatic
and persistent effort of creationists to present their theory before the
public, Christian and non-Christian, as in accord with Scripture and
nature, especially when the evidence to the contrarty has been presented
again and again by competent Christian Scientists
(e.g. Davis A. Young, Creation and the Flood, D. E. Wonderly's God's
Time-Records in Ancient Sediments, and numerous articles published
over the years in Journal of the American Scientific Affiliation)
It is sad that so much Christian energy has to be wasted in proposing
and refuting the false theory of catastrophic Flood geology. But
Christians need to know the truth and to be warned of error."
"The faith of many Christian people could be hindered when they
ultimately realize that the teachings of the creationists are simply
not in accord with the facts."
"Furthermore, creationism and Flood geology have put a serious roadblock
in the way of unbelieving scientists. Although Christ has the power
to save unbelievers in spite of our foolishness and poor presentation
of the gospels, Christians should do all they can to avoid creating
unnecessary stumbling blocks to the reception of the gospel."
"We are all dealing with God's world and with God-created facts...We
must handle the data reverently and worshipfully, yet we should not
be afraid of where the facts may lead. God made those facts, and they
fit into His comprehensive plan for the world."
"Another possible danger is that in presenting the gospel to
the lost and in defending God's truth we ourselves will seem
to be false. It is time for Christian people to recognize
that the defense of this modern, young-Earth, Flood-geology
creationism is simply not truthful. It is simply not in
accord with the facts that God has given. Creationism must
be abandoned by Christians before harm is done. The
persistent attempt of the creationist movement to get their
points of view established in educational institutions can
only bring harm to the Christian cause. Can we seriously
expect non-Christian educational leaders to develop a
respect for Christianity if we insist on teaching the brand
of science that creationism brings with it? Will not the
forcing of modern creationism on the public simply lend
credence to the idea already entertained by so many
intellectual leaders that Christianity, at least in its
modern form, is sheer anti-intellectual obscurantism? I fear
that it will."
[_Christianitiy and the Age of the Earth_, by Davis Young,
Zondervan 1982. p. 163.]
This is from G.T. Bettany, _Encyclopedia of World Religions_, a reproduction
of an 1890 manuscript. My copy is (partially) copyright 1988, Dorset Press,
New York. This is all direct quotes, with my comments in square brackets.
Keep in mind that this predates many important discoveries, including,
I think, the Dead Sea Scrolls.
Book V., Egyptian and Semitic Religions
Ch. 2, The Babylonian, Assyrian, and Phoenician Religions
[discussing the find, in 1872, of a set of Chaldean cosmology tablets
by one George Smith. No dates attached, other than they represent
comparatively late versions of a very early set of legends]
But while there is great interest in finding a Chaldean legend
agreeing in some features with that of Genesis, there is no warrant
for saying that either of the accounts has given rise to the other;
but that they have some connection is very possible. They are of
special importance, however, in anthropology as examples of the ways
in which the human mind has explained creation...
Among other early Chaldean fragments is one which appears to describe
a parallel incident to the confusion of tongues at Babel...
In the great Epic of Izdubar or Gishubar, also discovered by Mr. Smith
in 1872, we have a Semitic translation of the exploits of an early
Accadian king or primitive Hercules, arranged on a solar plan
[reference to the format of the tablets? not sure], which accords with
the representation of the hero as sun-god. In many ways the events
recorded in the epic corespond to the twelve labours of Hercules; and
it may be that the Izdubar legend is one of the early forms from which
Phoenicia and then Greece derived the famous myth. The most perfect
tablet is that which describes a deluge, which has been very generally
identified with that of Noah. The character of Izdubar corresponds
exactly to that of Nimrod in Genesis; and it is not certain that the
names may not be identical, for Izdubar is but a provisional
The deluge, according to the Chaldean epic, was due to the judgment of
the gods Anu, Bel, and Ninip, and Ea told the "man of Surripak",
Samas-Napiati (the living sun), to build a ship to preserve plants and
living beings; it was to be 600 cubits long, and 60 broad and high.
Numerous details of the building and construction are given; and
Xisuthrus with his people, and animals, and plants, and food had
entered the ship, "the waters of dawn arose at daybreak, a black cloud
from the horizon of heaven. Rimmon in the midst of it thundered, and
Nebo and the wind-god went in front." The earth was covered, and all
living things destroyed. Even the gods were afraid at the
whirlwind,and took refuge in the heaven of Anu. After six days and
nights the storm abated, and the rain ceased, and the wind and deluge
ended. "I watched the sea making a noise, and the whole of mankind
were turned to clay, like reeds the corpses floated...In the country
of Nizir (east of Assyria) rested the ship; the mountain of Nizir
stopped the ship,and to pass over it it was not able...On the seventh
day I sent forth a dove, and it left. The dove went, it returned, and
a resting-place it did not find, and it came back." Later a raven was
sent forth, and it did not return. Then the ship was opened, the
animals came forth, sacrifice was offered to the gods, and Xisuthrus
became the father of Izdubar, himself being later translated to live
as a god. We cannot attempt a detailed comparison of the Chaldean and
Noachian floods, for which reference must be made to Professor Sayce's
edition of Mr. Smith's "Chaldean Account of Genesis"; but we may
remark that this deluge narrative, perhaps more than anything else,
shows how closely the narratives in Genesis are related to Chaldean
traditions or sources of information.
Book VI, The Jewish Religion
Ch. 1, Early History - Moses
...There are many indications in the Pentateuch that it was at least
extensively revised long after the date of Moses; and indeed, there is
nowhere in the Pentateuch any assertion that Moses wrote the books
which have generally been attributed to him, and which speak of him in
the third person...
A most conspicuous result of modern criticism of the Pentateuch, is
the discernment of at least two authors or documents, one describing
the supreme God as Elohim, "the Mighty", a plural title which well
understoof by the peoples surrounding the early Israelites, and among
whom the briefer El was a common designation for their own chief
deity; the other using the term Jehovah, or Jahveh, translated "the
Lord". A third variation is found when the names are coupled together.
The passage in Exodus vi.3...appears to fix all narratives in which
the name Jehovah is used as later than that revelation to Moses; but
this is by no means agreed upon by critics. We may, however, study the
religious development of the Jews in two periods -- that in which the
name of the Deity was some form of El or Elohim, and that in which it
[stuff of some interest on the Creation descriptions in Genesis, I
hope to get back to this later]
[The preface to the Pentateuch in my New Scofield Reference Edition,
1967, say in part:
Certain critics have denied that Moses wrote Genesis to Deuteronomy
despite the fact that they were attributed to Moses by the Lord Jesus
Christ (where did he say that? I'm curious and haven't been able to
find it). The arguments against Moses' authorship are chiefly based on
the variation of the names of God (Elohim and Jehovah), the
differences in style and vocabulray, and the presence of more than one
account of the same event, e.g. the creation of man Gen. 1:26 and 2:7.
These contentions have been adequately answered in that the variation
in divine names is for the purpose of revealing certain aspects of
God's character; the style is dependent on the subject matter; and the
so-called parallel accounts, well known in ancient Near Eastern
literature, are intended to add details to the first account.
[Pretty weak arguments, to me, remembering that authorship was
considered relatively unimportant until recent times. We now return
you to your regularly scheduled Bettany.]
In the history of Noah we come into closer contact with the traditions
of other nations, and especially with the Chaldean deluge story,
already referred to (p.494). Moral evil had risen to a great height,
owing, as the early Hebrews believed, to an intermixture of the
daughters of Adam with a powerful race, the sons of Elohim, or the
mighty ones, giving rise to "giants". [why haven't we seen fossils of
these giants?]...We need not follow the details of the Flood...The
conception of a plain only broken by comparatively low hills, covered
by water as far as the eye could see, suffices to adequately fulfill
the conditions really demanded. The "mountains of Ararat" are rendered
the "mountains of Armenia" by many, and it is nowhere said that the
highest mountains were meant...
[Weren't the other races supposed to have been descended from Adam's
other children? How did they survive the Flood?]
...The rainbow was to Noah the sign of this covenant, a fact by no
means implying, what so many have imagined, that the rainbow then
The next great cosmological conception in the Book of Genesis is in
the story by which the variety of languages was accounted for. It is
closely paralleled by some fragments of Babylonian tablets in which
are described the anger of Bel at the sin of the builders of the walls
of Babylon and the mound of the towerr or palace. The builders, whose
attempts were directed against the gods, were confounded on the mound,
as well as their speech...
[Bettany goes on to say that accurate historical accounts, in his
opinion, begin with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.]
Book III, Brahmanism
Ch. I, The Early Vedic Religion
In the Satapatha-Brahmana, perhaps the most interesting of all these
books, there is found an early tradition of a flood. Manu, a holy man,
was warned by a fish that a flood would sweep away all creatures, but
he would resce him. He was directed to build a ship and enter it when
the flood rose; he did so, and fastened the fish to the ship, and was
drawn by it beyond the northern mountains. When the flood subsided
Manu was the only man left; a daughter was mysteriously born to him by
virtue of religious rites, and ultimately the world was peopled with
the sons of Manu. In later times it was said that the fish was an
incarnation of Brahma, who assumed that form in order to preserve
[I seem to also recall, from my days as a Boy Scout learning Indian
history, that some American Indians (who are underrepresented in
Bettany's book, IMHO, getting only about eight pages total) (Iroquois,
perhaps? certainly eastern) had a legend of an Indian who survived a
great flood on a simple raft.
} - There is evidence of a catastrophic flood.
um, i think what you're describing here is not a global flood, but a global
wash, and i suspect that the forces necessary to push water 5+ miles up and
thousands of miles horizontally would certainly be enough to kill everything,
animal and vegetable. it would certainly smash a little boat to toothpicks.
btw, under either model, global flood or global wash, how was all the
vegetable matter retained, i.e. how come we still have trees?
} - seashells on mountains
Underwater land was raised by plate tectonics. In many places you can see
this process in action (though you need good measuring equipment).
Subject: Noah's Ark - the construction problems
Returning once again to the procedural difficulties involving Noah's Ark,
based on the work of Robert Moore in "Creation/Evolution", issue XI,
we have the assurance of Tim LaHaye and Henry Morris that Noah and his three
sons could have easily constructed the ark in only 81 years (it being a
good thing that the average lifespan at the time was several hundred
years). According to Moore, the construction "... includes not merely the
framing up a hull but: building docks, scaffolds, workshops; fitting
together the incredible maze of cages and crates; gathering provisions for
the coming voyage; harvesting the timber and producing all the various
types of lumber from bird cage bars to the huge keelson beams --
not to mention wrestling the very heavy, clumsy planks for the ship into
their exact location and fastening them. What's worse, by the time the
job was finished, the earlier phases would be rotting away -- a difficulty
often faced by builders of wooden ships, whose work took only four or five
For waterproofing, we are told that God instructed Noah to coat the
ark with pitch inside and out with the naturally-occurring hydrocarbon
pitch, which causes a bit of a problem since, according to Whitcomb and
Morris, all oil, tar and coal deposits were formed when organic matter
was buried DURING the flood.
In addition, the structural soundness of the ark was extremely questionable
since, according to ship-building authorities, there was an upper limit
of about 300 feet on the length of wooden ships, beyond which they were
subject to 'hogging' or 'sagging'. Moore again,
"The largest wooden ships ever built were the six-masted schooners,
nine of which were launched between 1900 and 1909. These ships were
so long that they required diagonal iron strapping for support;
they "snaked" or visibly undulated, as they passed through the waves,
they leaked so badly they had to be pumped constantly, and they were
only used on short coastal hauls because they were unsafe in deep water."
The longest six master, the U.S.S. Wyoming, was only 329 feet long,
yet we are presented with the image of an ark well over 100 feet longer
having to cope with the most severe conditions imaginable.
What to leave behind
---- -- ----- ------
Given the limited room on the ark and the vast number of species of
organisms, several creationists attempt to salvage the situation somewhat
by leaving various families of animals to fend for themselves -- the birds
who are left to fly until dry land reappears and the marine animals who
must must survive the silt-choked, turbulent waters of the great Deluge
until the Flood waters recede. Unfortunately, any attempt to save space
on the ark this way flies rather drastically in the face of Scripture,
since Genesis 7:4 states rather clearly, "For yet seven days, and I will
cause it to rain upon the earth forty days and forty nights, and
*every living substance that I have made* will I destroy from off the
face of the earth."
To ensure that there is no misunderstanding, Genesis 7:23 repeats
the same information, "And every living substance was destroyed which was
upon the face of the ground, both man, and cattle, and the creeping
things, and the fowl of the heaven; and they were destroyed from the
earth: and Noah only remained alive, and they that were with him in the ark."
One would think that the exact wording of these passages leaves very little
latitude for interpretation.
The exact number of kinds ("baramin") that were taken aboard the ark
depends upon which creationist is performing the calculations and when
these calculations were done -- LaHaye and Morris in 1976 arrive at the
figure of 50,000 "kinds", an upward revision from Whitcomb and Morris's
1961 figure of 35,000 but a far cry from the figure of 1,544 due to
Dr. Arthur Jones.
In spite of Scriptural contradiction, there remains a valiant attempt
to determine just who can be left to fend for themselves in the Flood
waters and still have a fair-to-middling chance of surviving. The
first obvious candidates are the marine animals but, as Robert Moore
points out, there are some immediate problems:
"Although creationists seem to think that once you're wet, it's all
the same, there are actually many aquatic regimes and many specialized
inhabitants in each. Some fish live only in cold, clear mountain lakes;
others in brackish swamps. Some depend on splashing, rocky, oxygen-rich
creeks, while others, such as a freshwater dolphin, a manatee and a
thirteen-foot catfish, live only in the sluggish Amazon ...
"The salinity of the oceans would have been substantially affected
by the flood; Whitcomb and Morris lamely address this concern by noting
that some saltwater fish can survive in freshwater and vice versa and that
"some individuals of each kind would be able to survive the gradual mixing
of the waters and gradual change in salinities during and after the flood."
It is left to the reader's imagination to ponder how "gradual" a worldwide,
mountain-covering deluge would be.
Subject: the issue of marine animals being left behind
Three issues back, we discussed the rather drastic changes in salinity levels
that would result as a consequence of a world-wide flood, but Robert Moore
goes on to point out that, given the rest of the environmental hazards that
would accompany the Noachian Deluge, the problem of the salinity level would
be "a fish's least concern."
In addition to making the water intolerably muddy (Moore calculates a ratio
of 2.06:1 water-to-rock), the accompanying volcanic and seismic activity
would be truly unimaginable, since,
"... most of the world's volcanic activity, sea-floor spreading,
mountain-building and continent-splitting was supposed to have occurred
at this time as well, filling the seas with additional huge volumes of
rock, ash, and noxious gases. Undersea volcanoes usually decimate all
life in the surrounding area, and their extent had to be global during
this terrible year. The earth's pre-diluvian surface would thus have
been scoured clean, and forests, multi-ton boulders and the debris of
civilization hurtled about like missiles. Finally, this tremendous
explosion of energy would have transformed the seas into a boiling
cauldron in which no life could possibly survive."
Moore calculates that the temperature of the oceans would have been
increased by at least 2700 C,
"Yet amidst all of this, creationist icthyologists aver that life went
on as usual, with a few minor adjustments to the "gradual" changes.
The salmon swam to their (long-vanished) riparian breeding grounds that
fall as they always had; sea anemones clung to their rocky perches,
which were on the beach one month and the abyssal plain the next;
blue whales continued to strain for krill even though their baleen
plates were choked with mud; corals, which grow in clear, shallow water,
continued to grow anyway; hapless bottom dwellers, their lives carefully
adjusted to certain conditions of pressure and temperature, suddenly
saw the former increase by more than 5000 pounds per square inch
and the latter fluctuate in who knows what directions."
Given the above, it seems fairly clear that there is no question
of leaving any species to fend for themselves, which brings us to
yet another creationist technique for conserving on valuable space --
bringing along only young specimens or, in extreme cases, eggs.
However, Moore quotes Wildred T. Neill ("The Geography of Life"), as stating
that "the mortality rate is usually very high among seedling plants
and young animals; but once the critical juvenile stage is passed,
the organism has a good chance of reaching old age."
Moore follows this up with, "Furthermore, the young of many species
cannot survive without parental care and feeding ... and even if they
can, the lack of a normal social environment often results in severe
behavioral disturbances... As for the dinosaur eggs, how did Noah know
whether one would yield a female, the other a male -- or even that both
were fertile? And since no eggs require a year's gestation, he soon
would have had a hoard of fragile hatchlings on his hands."
The Noah's Ark Myths
"Do you seriously suppose that we are unable to prove our point,
when even to this day the remains of Noah's Ark are shown in the
country of the Kurds?" [Bishop Epiphanius of Salamis (315 to 403 CE)]
Scholars have known that there are two interwoven creation myths in
Genesis for over 200 years . Current scholarship places the number
of authors for Genesis at no less than four (i.e. Moses is entirely
legendary). The older creation myth is generally referred to as the
"J" (for Jehovah or Yahveh) document while the younger myth is known as
the "P" (for Priestly) document. The "P" document is characterized by
its impersonality, heavy usage of statistics (numbers) and genealogies,
and reference to their chief diety as "Yahveh Elohim". The more
primative "J" document refers to their chief diety as simply "Yahveh".
Note that Elohim is really the plural form (gods). This is entirely
logical since the entire creation myth was actually "borrowed" (a
euphemism for stolen) from the Babylonians who in turn "borrowed" their
version from the Sumerians. Virtually all monotheistic religions
evolved from earlier polytheistic religions. [2,3,4]
In the "J" document, god shapes man out of clay, while in the "P"
document god creates man with just his spoken word. In the earlier
references to man, the Hebrew word "adam" is used. This is translated
as "mankind" (i.e. generic man); the Hebrew name for "a man" is "ish".
Adam as a proper name does not appear until Genesis 5:1 (the Jerusalem
Bible). The dozens of contradictions that appear in Genesis are due to
the different authors and the haphazard way that the various versions
were combined into one book (c.f. animals by "twos" in one place and
by "sevens" in another).
The Babylonian flood story has been known to Western scholars for
several centuries through Greek fragments of the records of the
Babylonian historian Berosus (nineteenth century discoveries have
allowed a complete recovery). Between 1848 and 1876 Austen Henry
Layard (British Museum archaeologist) discovered several thousand
tablets in excavations at Nineveh of the library of the Assyrian king
Ashurbanipal (668 to 626 BCE). Although many of the cuneiform tablets
were destroyed by flames, water, and ransacking hoodlums, laboriously
painstaking effort resulted in the reconstruction of the famous
Gilgamesh epic in twelve cantos. The eleventh tablet contains the
Babylonian version of the universal deluge. The twelve cantos seem to
represent the twelve signs of the zodiac. [5,6]
On December 3, 1872 George Smith (British Museum archaeologist)
presented this quite important discovery to the Society of Biblical
Archaeology. In 1876, he published "The Chaldean Account of Genesis"
which showed the close relationship with the opening chapter of
Genesis. The Mesopotamian creation myth was in use in the New Year
ritual at the shrine of Marduk in Babylon as early as the time of
Hammurabi (1723 to 1686 BCE).
[ Another comprehensive explanation of the origin of much of the Old
Testament is "Bible Myths", by T. W. Doane, in which the author
demonstrates the similarities between the OT and myths from older,
surrounding cultures, particularly Chaldean, Babylonian, Etruscan and
Mesopotamian. - Robert P. J. Day ]
The Turkish Government excavated a tablet at Abu-Habbah (ancient
city of Sippar) which contains a version of the flood story complete
with the great deluge and a large ship (built by Atrakhasis) by which
people are to be saved. The tablet was dated the twenty-eighth day of
the eleventh Babylonian month in the eleventh year of the king
Ammizaduga (about 1966 BCE). Professor H.V. Hilprecht (University of
Pennsylvania) discovered a tablet fragment in the excavations at Nippur
that is no more recent than 2100 BCE. In this tablet, Ea (a god) tells
Atrakhasis (alias Ut-napishtim) to build a great ship to save his
family and the beasts of the field and the birds of heaven since he
will cause a deluge which will kill all life on earth. The Babylonian
creation myth is about 1,200 years older than the Hebrew version and
the Sumerian (pre 3,000 BCE) creation myth predates the Babylonian
version by over one thousand years. The obvious civilization sequence,
according to Biblical scholars, is from the Sumerians down to the
Babylonians and then down to the Hebrews. 
Note that according to Greek mythology King Ogyges reigned during a
great flood. There is absolutely no credible scientific evidence
supporting the existence of a world wide flood; there is evidence for
several large local floods. 
There have been more than forty different organized expeditions to
search for Noah's Ark since World War II. Since 1970 at least eleven
books and three movies have been made about the search for this ever
elusive object. Despite their complete lack of success, "arkeologists"
 continue to search for that large box anyway (ark means "box" or
"chest"). Mount Ararat (Agri Dagi) is the most recent of no less than
nine different "final" resting places for the ark (and the least likely
of all). [9,10]
The arkeologists' basic idea seems to be that if Noah's Ark is found
then evolution will somehow be proved totally wrong. They generally
ignore a number of rather important issues (i.e. where all that water
came from and where it went after the flood). In "Genesis vs.
Geology", Stephen Gould examines the plausibility of the Great Flood
and, in particular, the plausibility of the various proposals
creationists have dreamed up to explain where the water came from and
the even harder problem of where it went afterward. Gould uses this to
form the basis of a general discussion of "scientific creationism" and
the "scientific" creationists. 
Some additional difficult problems include : how did Noah save all
the different human diseases and parasites? How did giant earthworms
and marsupials make the trip to Australia? Did Noah save any dinosaurs
or plants? One of the Biblical flood myths claims that the earth was
completely submerged for 365 days; long enough to kill off all of the
land plant life. There are an estimated 10,000,000 to 40,000,000
plant and animal species on earth (more than 15,000 different mammals,
250,000 different beetles, and 250,000 different plants). Try
calculating just how big of a box is required to hold all of the
species (including their food) that survived the "flood". Imagine the
few people aboard the ark dealing with several tons of animal waste
each day (according to the Biblical myth the ark's only opening was a
window). This is only a miniscule list of the more formidable problems
that creationists must overcome. Then they get to show why virtually
all of modern science is completely wrong. (Several creationists are
involved in completely redefining science!) Evolution forms the very
foundation of physical anthropology, cosmology, and biology, to name
but a few. Evolution is also a basic component of linguistics,
cultural anthropology, archaeology, and several other branches of
modern science as well. [12,13]
Some of the more visible arkeologists include Kelly Segraves, John
D. Morris, and James Irwin. (John D. Morris is the son of Henry
Morris.) Morris has written two wonderfully silly books titled
"Adventure on Ararat" and "The Ark on Ararat". Although the Morris
expedition claimed several "sightings" of the ark they returned with
exactly zero. The Institute for Creation Research (ICR) started these
expeditions in 1971 and has yet to show anything in the way of
scientific evidence. The ICR claims to have received "miraculous
protection" (presumably from themselves) on at least one of their
expeditions. A member of the ICR has rationalized the whole failure
with "the Lord will reveal the Ark at a time of His own choosing". The
search for the ark has become such an embarrassment that the ICR now
disavows any involvement despite the evidence of several of their own
books, films, and slides! 
Former astronaut James Irwin's expedition was funded by an
evangelical religious group ("High Flight") based in Colorado Springs.
Like all arkeologists, Irwin is certain that the ark is up there
somewhere. On one expedition he suffered a serious fall and was forced
to donate three teeth to the current monument to creationist credulity
(Mount Ararat). After being released from the hospital, Irwin planned
to search the mountain with a helicopter to narrow down the location.
Why didn't he think of that before trying to cover the entire mountain
 "The Anchor Bible" untangles the different documents in Genesis.
 Eunice Riedel, Thomas Tracy, and Barbara Moskowitz, "The Book of
The Bible", Bantam Books Inc, New York, 1981, pp. 515-518. Riedel and
Moskowitz are anthropologists.
 Isaac Asimov, "Asimov's Guide to The Bible", Avenel Books, New
York, 1981. This was originally published as a two volume set.
 Alexander Heidel, "The Gilgamesh Epic and Old Testament Parallels",
University of Chicago Press, 1946. Heidel was on the research staff of
the Oriental Institute (University of Chicago) until his death in 1955.
 James George Frazer, "Folklore in the Old Testament", Hart
Publishing Company Inc, New York City, 1975. "The Great Flood", pp.
46-143. This is an extraction about the Old Testament from Sir
Frazer's classic twenty volume work "The Golden Bough". Frazer is one
of the greatest names in anthropological literature.
 LLoyd R. Bailey, "Where is Noah's Ark?", Abingdon, Nashville
Tennessee, 1978. Bailey is an associate professor of Old Testament
Studies at Duke Divinity School.
 "The Skeptical Inquirer" Volume 3, #4, Summer 1979. A review of
LLoyd Bailey's book on Noah's Ark, pp. 61-63.
 Stephen Jay Gould, "Genesis vs. Geology", "The Atlantic",
September 1982, pp. 10-17. Professor Gould teaches biology and
geology at Harvard University. Gould was awarded the 1981 American
Book Award for Science with "The Panda's Thumb". He is also a frequent
contributor to Natural History magazine.
 "Creation/Evolution" Issue #9, Summer 1982, "Six `Flood' Arguments
Creationists Can't Answer" by Robert J. Schadewald, pp. 12-17.
 "Creation/Evolution" Issue #11, Winter 1983, "The Impossible
Voyage of Noah's Ark" by Robert A. Moore, pp. 1-43. The entire issue
is about the ark. Moore lists over one hundred references.
 "Creation/Evolution" Issue #6, Fall 1981, "A Survey of Creationist
Field Research" by Henry P. Zuidema (paleontologist), pp. 1-5. Also
see "Arkeology : A New Science in Support of Creation?" by Robert A.
Moore, pp. 6-15.
 "Science 81", December 1981, "The Creationists", pp. 53-60.
(1) "Creationism as a Social Movement" by John Skow,
(2) "Creationism as Science" by Allen Hammond and Lynn Margulis,
(3) "The impact on education : an update", and
(4) "What do the creationists say?".
 Isaac Asimov, "In The Beginning... Science Faces God in The Book
of Genesis", Stonesong Press, Inc, 1981, pp. 151-188. Asimov presents
a very even-handed comparison of the Biblical creation myths and the
modern scientific view of origins.
 Martin Gardner, "Fads & Fallacies in the Name of Science", Dover
Publications, Inc, New York, 1957. "Geology verses Genesis", pp.
123-139. This was originally published under the title "In the Name of
 Barbara C. Sproul, "Primal Myths Creating The World", Harper and
Row, 1979, pp. 91-135. Sproul is Director of Religion at Hunter
College of the City University of New York.
 Free Inquiry "Science, the Bible, and Darwin". Summer 1982,
Volume 2, #3. "Creationism: 500 Years of Controversy" by Gerald Larue,
pp. 9-14. Professor Larue is emeritus professor of archaeology and
Biblical history (University of Southern California, Los Angeles). And
"Geology and the Bible" by Charles Cazeau, pp. 32-34. Charles Cazeau
is professor of geology (State University of New York at Buffalo).
 Howard M. Teeple, "The Noah's Ark Nonsense", Religion and Ethics
Institute, Inc, Evanston, Illinois, 1978. Teeple is a member of the
association of professional Biblical scholars, "the Society of Biblical
Literature" and an ex-fundamentalist with a Ph.d in Bible.
 Also see almost any contemporary encyclopedia under "Biblical
Criticism", "Exegesis", "Higher Criticism", "Lower Criticism", "Flood,
The", "Creation, The Story of", "Gilgamesh", and "Ut-Napishtim".
 Gerald A. Larue, "Ancient Myth and Modern Man", Prentice-Hall,
Inc, Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, 1975. Larue provides an extensive
bibliography. See  for author information.
 Howard M. Teeple, "The Historical Approach to the Bible", Religion
and Ethics Institute, Inc, Evanston, Illinois, 1982. Teeple provides a
very extensive bibliography. See  for author information.
 Robert Graves, Raphael Patai, "Hebrew Myths The Book of Genesis",
Greenwich House, New York, New York, 1983. Graves is world renowned as
a classicist and poet. Dr. Patai is an anthropologist, folklorist and
 The less sophisticated creationists are usually unaware that there
are two creation myths in Genesis while the more sophisticated usually
insist that such claims are merely an unproven hypothesis. This is an
actual example of the latter : "Perhaps the `faith-like' reliance upon
the Graf-Wellhausen hypothesis of the 19th-century (re: Genesis JEPD
theory) reveals either a lack of knowledge of post-WWII theological
progress or an imbalanced diet of Bible literature." The same
individual also insisted that the ancient Hebrews knew that the earth
was spherical despite massive evidence to the contrary! (i.e. the
Bible is a flat-earth book from cover to cover.)
 When I asked a local member of the American Scientific Affiliation
(ASA - a creationist organization) for the evidence supporting a global
flood he stated "the fact that all early civilizations had flood
stories proves the universal deluge recorded in the Bible historically
accurate." This typifies creationist thinking. Firstly, not all
ancient people had flood stories; only those located in regions where
floods naturally occur. Secondly, several thousand fables do not
somehow add up to a single fact.
 This whimsical name was invented by skeptics.
}misc concerning the flood
Concerning the Flood, the Biblical tale is a copy of an old
Mesopotamian tale; the Tigris and Euphrates rivers sometimes flood,
and a flood can seem like one of "all the world" to someone living in
nearly level terrain. In the tale of Noah's Ark, we do not learn why
Noah did not take advantage of this wonderful opportunity to get rid
of all the "unclean" animals once and for all. In early modern times,
it was commonly thought that fossils were the remains of animals and
plants buried in the Flood; the Free Thinker Voltaire felt compelled
to discredit this seeming evidence for Noah's Flood -- he suggested
that fossils were fakes or were dropped by pilgrims. But closer
examination of fossils suggested too-neat layering for an all-at-once
flood, and Flood advocates retreated to some of the most recent
sediments (see Stephen Jay Gould's essay "The Freezing of Noah" in
_The Flamingo's Smile_). In the early nineteenth century, even that
seeming evidence was shown to be the work of glaciers (floods of solid
water), and only in the more northern parts of the globe. Gould even
reproduces the "recantation" of one of the last reputable "Flood
Geologists", concerning this subject.
} hydraulic sorting
Well, let's see. Let's look at the usual creationist Flood theory, i.e.
that the ordering of fossils is determined by hydraulic sorting (some shapes
will settle faster than others), differential mobility (some life forms
could flee the Flood longer than others), and differential habitat (some
animals live at higher elevations than others). Let's pick a nice case that
looks at one of these mechanisms and controls for the other two. There are
certain plants that often grow at sea level, near the shore. There are many
mollusks that only grow in shallow water near the shore, and attach
themselves to rocks. No differential mobility, no sorting since both types
of organism stay put. Unfortunately, the particular class of plants involved
(I'll have to check my notebook at home for the exact reference -- I think
it's the angiosperms) doesn't show up in the fossil record until mammals
appear and is never found in lower layers with mollusks that should have
} timing problems
let's look at the Biblical dates. I Kings 6:1 says that 480 years
passed from the start of the Exodus to the start of construction on the
first temple by Solomon. Gal 3:17 says that 430 years passed from the
cevenant with Abraham to the delivery of the Law to Moses. The chapters of
Genesis after the Flood accound give the periods in years that passed
between the births of various individuals from Noah to Abraham, giving a
period of 390 years from the Flood to the covenant with Abraham. Thus,
according to the Bible, the Flood took place 1300 years before Solomon began
construction of the first temple.
a) This is a clear, direct, falsifiable claim. These are clear,
unambiguous statements that a period of X years elapsed between
b) The event itself (a global Flood that wiped out all but 8
humans) would be pretty hard to miss or gloss over.
c) Because there were any number of literate cultures in the
near East, who recorded dynastic lists, raised monuments
giving dates and length of reigns, and sent ambassadors to each
others' courts, we can pretty reliably construct chronologies
for near Easter history, particularly for Egypt, and without
reference to (but supported by) dating methods such as carbon-14
with corrections from tree-ring sequences.
d) The upshot of which is that the building of the first temple
can be dated to 950 B.C. +- some small delta, placing the Flood
around 2250 B.C. Unfortunately, the Egytians (among others) have
written records dating well back before 2250 B.C. (the Great
Pyramid, for example dates to the 26th century B.C., 300 years
before the Biblical date for the Flood). No sign in Egyptian
inscriptions of this global flood around 2250 B.C.
e) Therefore, either we have to reject the historicity of the
Flood account; accept the historicity of the Flood account,
but explain away the clear Biblical dating of the event; or
accept the Biblical account and chronology, and reject the
massive amount of written and archaological evidence estab-
lishing the chronology of history in the near East.
} folded rocks show that it was done when they were soft
}He next stated that when you hit something that's hard, it breaks or
}shatters. These folds are smooth, so it must be that the rock (he
}showed and mentioned sandstone) was still forming from mud, and was
}still soft. This means that the layers formed very rapidly, to still
}be soft (down at the bottom layer) when the whole shebang got
}His (inevitable) conclusion: it all formed during Noah's flood.
>Rebuttal: nothing "hit" that rock. Conventional geology understands
>the strength and brittleness of these things: they can and have been
>measured in labs. Note, I'm not saying that rocks of a given type
>are identical. The point is that science has dealt with all this
>quantitatively. The rocks got folded by compression, not by sudden
>impact: and in fact some rocks do shatter. I've seen examples - for
>instance, hard black fragments embedded in a softer gray rock. The
>gray rock had flowed while the black shattered.
Folding can happen in a lot less than geological time. If you
go to the Roman dig at the Fort at Housesteads, in Northumbria,
you can see the remains of Roman barracks which now lie in definite
waves, because of the movement of the earth beneath them. The
mortar between the stones is still intact.
--- Squish v1.01
* Origin: Universal Electronics Inc [714 939-6401] HST/DS (1:103/208)
To: All Msg #308, Jun-23-93 08:13AM
Subject: Worlds in Collision/collusion/confusion
Organization: UTexas Mail-to-News Gateway
I would like to thank the various members of the INTERNET and BITNET
community of assisted me in proofing the document, providing numerous
suggestions along the way.
Permission is given for this article to be copied and printed for
non-profit use showing arguments concerning Velikovsky. Permission
must be given for other uses. If you have any items which you believe
should be included, please email me.
firstname.lastname@example.org - or - meritt%aplvm.BITNET
Since my expertise is not in history, I shall mainly address those
points made which have physical, astronomical, chemical, or general
scientific basis and are addressed in "Worlds in Collision" or in
Velikovsky's work which addresses his central thesis in that work.
An occasional item (primarily involving mythology) will be included
because I have been involved in the Latin mythology. (I lived in
Italy and have been involved in various Latin clubs over the years.)
Additionally, I am only going to be covering Immanuel Velikovsky's
work itself - not what someone said he said.
James W. Meritt
In Immanuel Velikovsky said:
}[moon count in the solar system]
No particular suprise that he missed the count. We find more quite often.
Not something to hold against him, but it does give a readily verifiable
example that what he thinks that is demonstrated not to be correct.
I find the defense of "he didn't know that in the 1950's to be odd,
considering that most of this book is supposidely conclusions of the same
type that wasn't known in the 1950's, either, but suppose to be
gospel by his followers...
Personally, I find it unlikely that using incorrect data (as clearly
demonstrated) for incorrect reasoning (as displayed below, and coupled
with his ZERO training in physics, astronomy, biology,...) will arrive
at correct conclusions.
}" it is assumed that mercury permanently shows the same face to the sun"
} [page 5]
It doesn't The days are weird, though, because the period of its day is
longer than the period of its year. (88 earth-day "year", 59 "earth-day" long
days. Venus has a period of rotation of 243.09 earth-days, and a year
of 224.70 earth days. Oh yes, this rotation is retrograde. Guess it
(it doesn't happen to be the only retrograde "planet", either. There is
also Tritan (retrograde revolution). Neptune is almost 90 degrees tilted)
didn't sync with earth like Velikovsky thinks mars did - in spite of a
lot (according to Velikovsky) more opportunity. It does have a tidal
lock with earth so that, in its present orbit, every time it is at close
approach with earth the same side is facing us. This tidal lock would
take a LONG time in its present position. If it had passed nearer earth
it would have acquired a radically different rotational momentum and would
not, after only a few thousand years, been able to do this.
As an aside, IF venus were have somehow matched rotation with earth
during a close pass, it would have been with the relative motion
of the planets AT THE TIME - which it clearly does not have now. Hence,
this "tidal lock" is proof that this close-approach lock did NOT happen.
} [birth of comets by being expelled from the sun - not his idea]
} [page 14]
Velikovsky is against this idea because "birth of a comet in this manner has
never been observed" (page 14), but that doesn't seem to bother him that
a comet has not been observed being expelled from a gas giant, either.
While Velikovsky doesn't mind using "myths" in support of his wild ideas,
other people must meet more stringent criteria.
Interestingly enough, the S2 molecule has been identified as existing
in comets. This is interesting because it is not stable. If you
warm it, the moleculs ceases to exist as S2. Therefore, however comets are
made, it cannot involve a lot of heat. Either from being ejected from the
sun, a gas giant, or anything else. Some take partial comfort that
volcanoes don't have to be molten silicate - as Io showed. But
this is STILL too hot for S2. Not to mention that the core of
Jupiter is itself too hot (and the core is the only place you will
find other than light gases), and this mythical ejection process,
unless it is 100% effecient production of kinetic energy, would
be too hot. Even the frictional heating of going out of the atmosphere
of a gas giant (think of it as reentry in reverse) would be too high.
Thus, comets CANNOT currently be ejected.
While looking through the journal Icarus, volume 86 Number 1, July
1990, I found the following article entitled "The Origin of
Short-Period Comets" by Mark Bailey and Chris Stagg. The first
paragraph reads as follows:
It has recently been shown (Stagg and Bailey 1989 Monthy
Notices of Royal Astronomical Society 241, p507) that the
observed number of short-peroid is consistent with a
spherically symmetrical Oort cloud source, provided that it
contains a moderately centrally condensed inner core
parameterized by an "inner edge" corresponding to orbits
with a minimum semimajor axis a_0 \approx 4000 AU and an
energy spectrum power law-index \gamma \geq -1. Although a
core of this general type is predicted on the basis of the
planetesimal theory of cometary origin (e.g., Opik, 1973,
Shoemaker and wolfe 1984, Fernandez 1985a, Duncan et. al.
1987), evolutionary arguments based on the disruption of the
Oort cloud (e.g., Bailey 1986) show that the inner core
probably has to be at least this centrally condensed (see
Bailey 1989 for an introductory review). The combination of
these independent constraints provides a stringent test of
the planetesimal theory of cometary formation.
(thanks to Greg Hennessy)
} "the presence of iron in the shell or the migration of heavy metals from the
}core to the shell has not been sufficiently explained. For these metals to
}have left the core, they must have been ejected by explosions, and in order
}to spread throughout the crust, the explosions must have been followed
}immediately by cooling."
Why must ALL the iron have EVER been in the core? In all the planetary
formation models I have read it started evenly distributed and migrated
to the core due to the density difference while the planet was molten.
Obviously not a 100% efficient method of separation. Especially since
the metals are so common - witness the primary constituents of meteorites,
for instance. And one of the methods of concentrating what will become
ores is biological. Bacteria, for instance, concentrate different elements.
The massive banded iron formations around the world, for another example,
were formed when the oxygen-releasing stromatolite-building microorganisms
released oxygen into the oceans. The oceans had iron dissolved in it.
The iron oxide precipitated out. Slow and easy. No explosion.
Heck, even meteoric bombardment leaves concentrations of iron on the
surface (theorized origins of lunar mascons, for instance).
} "... the presence of oxygen in the terrestrial atmosphere is unexplained."
} [page 16]
Perhaps the concept of "photosynthesis" (can you say 'plants'?) was foreign
to him. Most other people have no problem explaining it at all. In fact,
the time when this "pollution" occurred has been dated and is the first
really big extinction as the non-oxygen bacteria got wiped out by the
waste product of the plants. We are looking at around 1.4 to 1.5
billion years ago.
} "The deep strate of igneous rock contain no signs of fossil life."
} [page 17]
igneous: formed by solidification of molten magma. Webster's dictionary.
Don't you think that being in molten rock would probably do in any fossil,
not to mention that very few life forms live in lava? I find it interesting
here that the apologist decide that what he meant is not what he said.
} [mountains formed by pushing from below. He has no idea why]
} [page 18 - 19]
Collision of continental plates. Simple, really. A friend at one of
the laboratories made a program that models this process [using the
supercontinent cycle explained in scientific american] to produce very
realistic planetary "maps". And this plate relative movement has been
directly measured in a number of places: europe wrt north america, and
the plate junctions in california are CLOSELY monitored. For an even
more interesting view, check the midatlantic ridge - the activity there
(which is the "gap" from which they spread) is quite fascinating. The
magnetic reversals (which have occurred) show up as "stripes" on each
side of this band, demonstrating not only the spreading but the timing
and the magnetic fields at the times. (none recently. Sorry, Velikovsky)
This is an example of one of his wild ideas having a straightforward
} "That a comet may strike our planet is not very probable, but the idea
} is not absurd."
} [page 40]
It would have been nice if he were to work out the math. Fortunately, it
has been worked out elsewhere to come to about thirty thousand to one for a
millennium. Velikovsky [page 388] has 5-6 near collisions between Venus,
Mars, and Earth in a "brief" period. If these events were independent,
that is about a trillion quadrillion to one. As a lower limit.
S. F. Kogan's letter in Sept., 1980 Physics Today or article in KRONOS VI;3.
Using Sagan;s statistical approach and V's actual scenario (e.g., no grazing
encounter). Korgan shows that the chance for a collision is 1 in 12 per
1000 years, not 1 in 30,000 per 1000 years that Sagan derived.
Another interesting feature is that while there is a BIG object
wandering around (venus/comet and sometimes mars) and a lot of tiny
objects (meteorites that hit people) there does not seem to be a whole
lot in between. Where are the craters from asteroid/lunar size masses?
Grieve lists nine impact craters comparable to the arizona crater or
larger that have formed on land within the last 2.5 million years.
Where are all these hits that Velikovsky thinks are here?!?!?
And what was the moon doing during all of this?!?!? Why is it still
} [descriptions of comets and meteorites]
} [page 40-41]
He seems to be very confused and uses the terms as the mood hits. A comet
is mostly a snowball (we've sent probes). A meteor is a rock (either
iron-nickel or stoney) We have chunks. You can turn a comet into a
bunch of meteorites (we believe we have seen this occurring) by evaporating
away all the ice and leaving the pebbles. There have been meteor showers
when the earth passed through the "tail" of extinct comets. The
meteorites which make it to the ground, however, do not seem to be
associated with comets. The observed air drag on the shower meteors indicates
low-density material ( < 1 g/cm^3 ) compared to meteorites (typically 3 (stony)
to 7 (Ni-Fe) g/cm^3). The low density of the shower meteoroids suggests
fluffy aggregations of cometary dust & debris.
} [discussion on changing earth's angular momentum via a close encounter
} with a comet, problems heating the planet when it does ("since the world
}survived, there must have been a mechanism...", and some alteration of
}the direction of the rotational axis due to a strong magnetic field]
} [page 43 -44]
If it were fast, there have been plenty of delicate structures which would
have been destroyed (in Luray Caverns, for instance). If it were slow, the
temperature would have gone up an average 100 degrees K, and 240 degrees
K at lower latitudes. I think that would have been noticed. "Fast" and
"slow" seem almost as vague as "venus is hot", except that there are
measurables associated. But, just for estimating the problem, this
entire encounter could only have lasted hours because there could not
have been a low-velocity encounter between planetary-sized masses - they
would not have been able to separate afterwards! So the entire kinetic
energy of the earth HAD to be converted to heat in hours. Which should
have heated the planet (not the water - that is merely a convenient measure).
No accounts that I have seen of the ground heating up even more than
the boiling water. And if you wish to believe all the water was heated
as it must have if this theory is correct, why are there fish? They
ALL would have been killed. And plants do not survive real well
when their roots are cooked, nor the seeds baked (after being shaken
to the ground by the quakes. Oops, no quakes!)
Interestingly enough, since Velikovsky claims that indians "hid out"
in these caves, that would prove that whatever they were hiding
from was NOT a large-scale momentum alteration - they didn't cook.
Of this "strong magnetic field" there is no trace. I propose that
the search for any mechanism will fail, because the reason for it to exist is
BTW: How did earth get started back up? Velikovsky didn't seem to
notice this little problem in his discussions on how it stopped...
From a Velikovsite:
He doesn't say that the whole earth stopped rotating. On page 44 he
suggests that as one possibility to consider. He talks about the problems
that would ensue IF the world stopped rotating. On pages 44 and 385 he
suggests a tilting of the earth's axis as a way to produce the visual effect
of a retrogressing or arrested sun without stopping the rotation of the
earth about it's axis.
The problem here is that it introduces a tumbling. Nothing to stop
that is mentioned, either. We are not now rotating around more than
Other interesting item: The acoustic propagation time within the earth (the
time it takes the earth AS A WHOLE to respond) is 85 minutes. No way a
stop-start is going to take place in the Gideon account without ripping
the planet apart with the dissimilar motions.
Oh yes - the magnetic field around the earth has been dipolar for the past
1 million years, with the axis within 3 degrees possibly inclined to the
earth's rotational axis by 3 degrees. Obviously, another pole was NOT
nearby (i.e. a major magnet i.e. a highly-magnetized planet/comet).
} "The tails of comets are composed mainly of carbon and hydrogen gases.
} Lacking oxygen, they do not burn in flight, but the inflammable gases,
} passing through an atmosphere containing oxygen, will be set on fire"
} [page 53]
Not to mention that they lack the density. You are talking about a VERY
thin gas. It is also tough to make a carbon gas...
BTW: The volatiles in the tails of comets appear to be mostly water.
Water burns rather poorly...
} "binding all the oxygen available at the moment"
} [page 53]
And would kill off all life IF that were to occur. We breath oxygen. Yet,
Velikovsky seems to think that there were human witnesses to this in both
hemispheres. Wonder what the observers breathed?
to counter the Velikovsite dream of:
"...if the fire in the air is extinguished before new supplies of
oxygen arrive from other regions."
Consider how well a gas could be aimed at a specific local, such that
it would not cover the entire planet. From the distance we are talking
about (trans-lunar) you can't even focus a beam of light that well, let
alone a gas that would be diffusing as it traveled.
BTW: water does a rather poor job at binding oxygen...
} "All the countries whose traditions of fire-rain I have cited actually
} have deposits of oil"
} [pages 55-56]
Since even Velikovsky notices that it is a common geological feature in the
area, why must any other contortion be required? That is a perfectly
straightforward terrestrial explanation - that there is oil in the
ground of these regions.
} [people's time estimation accuracy bad] - [page 59]
} [people's clocks accuracy excellent] - [page 323]
See anything odd here?
} [ plagues kill "chosen", not "first borne"]
} [page 63]
OK. So the Old Testiment is wrong... If it doesn't agree with Velikovsky,
just make it up as he goes. For those who think that this Russian
psychiatrist showed some phenomenal linguistic insight in his "explanation"
instead of making it up as he goes, don't you think that this would have
come out/been confirmed in some of the many, many translations made of the
OT? There have been many linguistic and religious scholars who have
spent their lives on the work in question, and they don't seem to agree
with Velikovsky's spur of the moment rationalization. As Ted Holden
. . .I KNOW that nobody who claims any
expertise in Hebrew or biblical studies would ever claim that numerous
wholesale mistakes in translation were made by the committee of scholars
who created the King James Bible.
Which demonstrates the likelihood of this "error" creeping in (a funny
item - Ted is a Velikovsite himself.).
} [tides from Venus close approach at least miles high]
} [pages 70 and 71]
Since the tidal height is proportional to the mass of the tide producing
body and inversely proportional to the cube of the distance, the entire
planet would have been caught up in the tide. Seems that Egypt, for instance,
didn't notice as the tremendous wave went over on the eighth or fifteenth
century BC. Or Aztec, or Chinese,... Not a global "flood" but a global
"wash" that should have wiped it smooth quite a few times. Obviously,
} "... head of the comet. This head only shortly before had passed close
} to the sun and was in a state of candescence."
} [page 77]
Since there is no temperature prediction given, it is hard to see how a
prediction could have been matched. "candescence" and "incandescent state"
don't really cut it... Makes one wonder why the manna wasn't baked...
Perhaps the 6000 degrees K that the photosphere is? Guess the wanderers
got baked bread. And the oil burned, the flies were killed,......
Do Velikovsites know that the sungrazing comet of 1882 developed bright iron
lines in the spectroscope because it came so close to the sun that the
heat could vaporize refractory metals? The temperature of that one went
up to 3,000 degrees F.
}[changing funny shapes in the sky - comet tail]
}[pages 77, 264, 306, 310]
Apparently Velikovsky was never illuminated by the work of Rorschach, which
show that the same nondescript shape can be "seen" as many things by different
people. There is absolutely nothing which requires that the same object
change shape, or that it even BE the same object. That is a very
strange thing for a psychiatrist to be unaware of...
One other thing I find interesting is that both writing about the same
thing AND writing about different things are BOTH evidence to Velikovsky.
} "a tremendous spark flew between the earth and the globe of the comet"
} [page 77]
First, how is such an electrical potential suppose to be formed between the
Second, if there were, would not the tail have the same charge as the comet,
in fact it would be carrying the charge away as the potential would be
concentrated on the protrusions and then the particles electrostatically
repelled. IF the earth were immersed in the charged particles AND it had
a radically different potential, the particles would be attracted to the
earth and the two objects would rapidely reach an equipotential state.
The earth had been in the tail a LONG time.
Finally, objects from earth have travelled to comets. No large electrical
potential is observed. In fact, probes have gone to Venus and not found
any such indication. Heck again, EARTH has been inside of other comet
tails and no such thing occurred.
} " A phenomenon that has not been observed in modern times is an electrical
} discharge between a planet and a comet and also between the head of a comet
} and its trailing part"
} [page 78]
Interesting, in that earlier he uses this reason to discard someone's
theory, but not to discard his own. As he said - "not been observed in
modern times". Why set standards for others he himself does not match?
Again, even those these approaches HAVE been seen, his "hypothesized event"
did not occur. In fact, earth as passed near to/within Halley's comets
tail. No electrical discharge. No manna, flies,..... either.
And again, the tail should have the same electrical potential as the head,
since it came from there. You need a potential difference to have a
discharge. Doesn't Velikovsky understand this simple fact?
I can think of a good reason it has not been observed: it doesn't
happen. There have been opportunities...
} "The head of the comet did not crash into the earth, but exchanged
} major electrical discharges with it"
} [page 85]
Sort of like Halley's did in 1910? I've already gone into why this is absurd.
} [The collapsed sky]
} [page 89]
Nothing here to show any reason why these various stories referred to the
same time. I think Velikovsky uses "ancient" to mean "when I want it to".
} [volcanism and lava flows in Greek, Mexican and Biblican traditions]
} [page 91]
Nothing here to show that the quoted events are even approximately comparable
times, so no common exogenesis event should be implied. The only place
in which these events are simultaneous is within Velikovsky's mind. NO
separate support. You do not assume a time, then use your assumption to
support your assumption.
}"the celestial body.... sent close, made contact...,retreated, and
} approached again... about two months"
} [page 94]
I cannot come up with any pair of orbits in which two solar orbitting
objects come together in two months. Even Galileo which is carefully
aimed, left earth in October 1989 and will not be back until December
1990 after passing (gasp!) venus. And then it'll be back two years later.
And then on its way to (gasp! again) Jupiter.
Kepler's rules of orbital mechanics just don't let you do this. As
an obvious problem, it would take the planet going in the circle a year
to do the circle. That's too long. Now, lets put an ellipse intersecting
the circle at four points. Look at the different paths taken. Now,
picture the circular planet and the object in the ellipse being at the
SAME four points at the same time (i.e. transit the same angular
distance across paths with varying distances under different gravitational
accelerations). No way.
Something else neat - here we have close encounter after close encounter
after close...... Suddenly a circular orbit pops out, without ever
coming close again. As Ric Werme wrote:
The problem is that in a two body system, an orbit is invariant. That is,
its period is constant, its eccentricity is constant, its foci are
constant, its path is constant. Should something perturb the orbit, once
the perturbing force is removed, the perturbed body will be in a new orbit
and it will return to the spot where the perturbing force ended.
So, as you should see, if something perturbs the orbit, the two objects
should meet again - be it venus, mars, or earth. They are not.
} [all volcanoes active, all continents quake]
} [pages 96 and 97]
Volcanic flows can be easily dated. It is trivial to show that not all
volcanoes were active between 1500 and 600 BC. Not to mention the rest
of the devastation he alludes to.
} [a "pure" note making recognizable voices]
} [page 97 - 100]
Get real. People who played musical instruments would mistake a single
pitch ("same pitch throughout the world" - page 99) for voices? That
said different, clearly (and loudly) recognizable complicated speaches?
} [thunderbolt reverses the poles of a magnet]
} [page 114]
Huh? That's news to me. I know you can heat one past its curie point and
demagnetize it, but reverse it?
} [geomagnetic reversals are caused by comet near-approaches]
} [page 114-115]
The reversals are recorded in the ocean bed. As the ocean floor spreads
from the mid-atlantic ridge, the magnetism is recorded into the solidifying
lava. Thus, a continuous record of the earth's magnetic field is readily
available for the life of the atlantic ocean. You see a reversal about
every million years, though not in the last few thousand. He hinted that
lava could be used to verify his theory, but missed where. Unfortunately
for him, it disproves it.
} "We can at least maintain that the earth did not remain on the same orbit."
} [page 116]
I reckon he has no idea on the dimensions of the ecosphere around sol or he
would be MUCH more careful. For instance, to maintain a temperature
consistent with habitability, the low equatorial illumination should be
between 0.65 and 1.35 times that of earth.
Of course, since he has flies evolving on jupiter and then surviving after
being incandescent, his concept of "same orbit" must be MUCH broader than
mere liquid water! ("same" being "enough like the present one to allow it
to be livable".)
} [changes in the times and the seasons]
} [pages 120 - 125]
Cute, but coral beds faithfully record such events, as do tree rings.
We have records going WAY before a couple of millenium ago, and no
such changes are evident. (that is from now back to a few thousand
years ago, recording everything in between)
} "When the air is overcharged with vapor, dew, rain, hail, or snow falls.
} Most probably the atmosphere discharged its compounds, presumably of
} carbon and hydrogen, the same way.
} [page 134]
It will have to be REAL cold before it rains hydrogen!
} "Has any testimony been preserved that during the many years of gloom
} carbohydrates precipitated?"
} [page 134]
Wait one. Back around page 55 this stuff was hydrocarbons. Am I to
take it that Velikovsky cannot tell the difference between gasoline and
These must be the same "intelligent molecules" he discusses later
in reference to the problems associated with detecting hydrocarbons
in the atmosphere of venus. Somehow, the hydrocarbons hit the
ground but the carbohydrates hit the people. Neat trick!
} "... quantity which fell every day would have sufficed to nourish the
} people for two thousand years."
} [page 138]
Hmmmmm. With hundreds of thousands of Israelites (according to exodus) at
1/3 a kilogram a day falling (timed!) from the air for forty years we get
enough to cover the entire surface of the earth to about an inch.
Noplace else noticed?
Now, since all of it could not have hit the earth (timed and aimed release?)
we would get the release about 10000000000000000000000000000 grams in the
inner solar system, somewhat more massive than all of Venus. And that is just
the manna - not to mention the ice and rock that we KNOW is in a comet or the
rock and CO2 we KNOW is on venus. There is also the minor problem that visits
to comets and venus have not found any manna... In fact, the recent visit by
Kohoutek shows it contains large quantities of simple nitriles- bad
things like hydrogen cyanide and methyl cyanide. Not good components for
manna, but fine for gas chambers... And that the manna was baked after being
heated to "candescent" temperatures, ejected from venus at over 6.4 miles
per second, then surviving reentry. And this cooked manna still tasting like
"wafers made from honey" and so sensitive that sunlight evaporates it. Right.
For a nearby check, results from the Lunar Receiving Laboratory:
"A survey of organic constituents by a pyrolysis-flame ionization
detector method and by means of a very sensitive mass spectrometer,
provided an estimate of the indigenous organic content of the lunar
samples. The values published give the organic content as under 10 parts
per million.... No evidence of biological matter"
Does not look like evidence of either megatons of manna, nor of vermin,
descending from interplanetary space through the earth-moon system.
} "The Greeks as well as the Carians and other peoples on the shore of the
} Agean Sea told of a time when the sun was driven off its course and
} disappeared for an entire day, and the earth was burned and drowned."
} [page 143]
I just finished reading the book "End of Atlantis". It was written by an
archeologist. He compiled a lot of evidence, added some interpretation, and
concluded that around 1470 BC, an island in the southern Mediteranean, near
It was about 4 miles across. All that is left is some tiny islands around
the 'rim'. He compared it to a volcano in the south Pacific that erupted
around 1890 or so. If he is right, than the entirity of the Mediteranean
would have been hit by tidal waves. Also, the sun would have 'disappeared'
for several days, followed by several days of heavy rain.
Thanks to Ron Wigmore
} [first sighting of venus from earth]
} [page 158]
"This is not widely agreed with. Venus was known as the morning and evening
star certainly by 1900BC, and clearly discussed in connection with the rising
and setting sun at 3000BC.
According to sixteenth century BC records (-1580 to -1560) the observed motion
of venus was almost identical with todays orbit. Cuneiform writings of
the Babylonian astronomers were quite clear. There were even pre-
babylonian indications from Sumerian and Mesopotamian writings. I guess
"ancient" writings are only used if they support Velikovsky.
The sumerian version of "Inanna's descent to the neither world" that is
in copies made in the second millennium BC has "I am Inanna of the place
where the sun rises." (i.e. the morning star). One that refers to King
Iddindagan of Isin (ca. -1909 to -1889) identified her as both the
evening star and the morning star, which is an orbit INSIDE of earths.
The lowest known written documents on earth are excavated from
Uruk (Mesopotamia). The tablets at level III (next to lowest) refer
to Inanna associating her with the star of both the rising and setting
sun. This is around 3000 BC.
During the reign of Ammizxaduga, king of Babylon (between -1701 and
-1581) there were a series of observations of venus appearing and
disappearing with the rising and setting of the sun (it is either the
morning star or the evening star, but both never appear at the same
time. They apparently recognized this fact.) The text covered 21
consecutive years. It included periods of inferior and superior conjunction.
From this data, we can determine that the orbital data from this period
is compatible with modern orbital elements within the limits of
Babylonian observational accuracy.
The Venus Table in the Dresden Codex comes from twelfth-century AD
Yucatan. They not only observed the orbit, but had its period
and a close approximation to the complete cycle. There were five
iterations of ephemeris data, bringing the orbit of venus as indicated
to within two hours of the place/time modern orbital calculations would
And as for "unknown"
The Greeks called the evening star Hesperos.
The Greeks called the morning star Phosphorus.
the Romans called the evening star Vesper ("evening" in Latin)
The Romans called the morning star Lucifer ("light-bearer")
}"I assume also that in the third millenium only four planets could have
} been seen, and that in astronomical charts of this early period the
} Planet Venus cannot be found."
} [page 160-161]
He assumes wrong. When the facts do not support him (see above), he
substitutes his assumptions.
} "One of the Planets Is a Comet"
} [page 161]
We know what a comet is. Probes have gone to one. They are basically
big dirty snowballs. We know what Venus is. Probes have gone to it.
It is a BIG nasty ball of rock. A comet is ice cold. Venus is
molten-lead hot. They are very, very different. A few neat things have
been found- like Halley's comet (the 15 km comet itself, not the
corona and tail) is BLACK. Blacker than any black paint you can buy.
And small. And peanut shaped. And hot crust (100 degrees celsius from
the soviet on-site probe) with a cold interior (an aircraft monitored
jets out of it during the recent passage, find that they are ejected from a
32 degree source).
} [long discussion of comet tail of venus]
} [page 163-167]
Even if everything else was right, there is no way this stuff is going to
get up to escape velocity for a planetary size body. And the material
HAS to get off-planet to form a tail. It is easy on comets because the
head is very small with a trivial escape velocity. Simple warming will
accelerate the stuff to escape the head. Even heated to a dull red glow,
Venus's atmosphere is tightly held. Not to mention the tiny detail that
the atmosphere of Jupiter is mostly hydrogen and helium, the tail of
a comet is mostly water, and the atmosphere of venus is mostly carbon dioxide.
Yet Velikovsky thinks these are ALL the same gases (jupiter -> comet ->
}...page-long varying description of the appearance of venus...
} [page 164]
He quotes Kugler to prove that Venus had a beard (a cometary
tail). But he cuts off the quotation, so the reader won't notice that
"Venus has an axe" means "Venus is in the constellation `axe'" and
"Venus has a beard" means "Venus is the constellation `beard' (namely
the Pleiades)", just some Babylonian manner of speech.
On the same page V. says that Venus must have been a comet because it is
so bright, quotes Kugler, but omits Kugler's comment that Venus even
nowadays can sometimes be seen in daytime.
} [Pallas Athene]
} [chapter page 168-172]
Athena is not the goddess associated with Venus. The guy is now
making up his own mythology.
}Athena's counterpart in the Assyro-Babylonian patheon is Astarte...
}pictured with horns..."
} [pages 169 - 170]
Athena and Ishtar are both pictured with horns. Hence equal.
But V. doesn't tell his readers that *all* Babylonian gods are pictured
} "birth of Athena (planet Venus)"
} [page 173
Gummed up mythology again...
} [rain of cosmic flies, ants, and other critters]
} [page 183-187]
Really odd. This species, which is adapted to breath a nitrogen-oxygen
mixture as an adult evolved in an environment that had neither oxygen
nor liquid water? And would not it be the case that after reentry any
insect would greatly resemble an ash? And I find it unsubstantiated
that, on earth, flies are separated biologically from every other insect.
They seem to match proteins, DNA, general physical structure,...
} "The ability of many small insects... and to live in an atmosphere
} devoid of oxygen..."
} [page 187]
Not that I know of. Not to mention the minor detail that a metabolism
which obviously runs in an oxydizing atmosphere just would not make it
in a neutral (like Venus and Mars) or reducing (like Jupiter) atmosphere.
}Pliny says that Isis is the planet Venus
} [page 195]
Plinius (who lived 2000 years after the high point of Egyptian
civilization) is quoted for Isis=Venus. However, in the pictures that V.
quotes can be seen that Venus is associated with quite another god, namely
Osiris; the same source (Plutarchus) that identifies Isis with Athena,
says that Isis is associated with the star Sirius.
} "Venus moves Irregularly"
} [page 199-202]
Not for the last few thousand years it hasn't. Say, at least four
thousand. See above.
}The Vulgate translation.... The (Greek) translation...
} [page 202]
Velikovsky usually quotes `correct' but in a strange way. He quotes
the Bible (Job), by using the Vulgata-translation and the Septuagint-
translation both for the same passage, and ignores the Hebrew original.
} "Gaseous masses reaching the atmosphere could asphyxiate all breath in
} certain areas"
} [page 234]
Interesting. A density WAY above current comets (Halleys, for instance,
is known as a dirty one. One probe even flew through a jet. A cup of
tail has something like one chance in 25,000 of containing one dust
particle) somehow aims at parts of the earth.
I wonder if Velikovsky realizes that during the 1910 pass of Halley's comet
a lot of people stayed indoors because they were afraid of the "lethal gas"
in the cometary tail. Guess what? Nobody was killed.
} "I could not find the publication"
} [page 237]
We have here a common usage of defense between most Velikovsites and
} [Rotation of the earth stops and starts]
} [pages 236 and 385]
I am aware of tidal locks "freezing" the rotation of one body relative to
another, but not one body locking the revolution of a second body onto
yet a third, nor of any way to restart the spin to the same value it had
before. Please see above for the shock and thermal considerations.
}The Babylonian name of the planet Mars is Nergal...Nergal, the perfect
} [page 241-242]
Nergal would be the god of war (he isn't, he is the god of pestilence).
Why? because he is called "perfect warrior". V. doesn't tell his readers
that all Babylonian gods are called like that.
} "The planet Mars was feared for its violence"
} [page 242]
The GOD Mars was feared for his violence - remember, the God of War?
Mars was associated because it appeared (blood) red. Still does.
In fact, from the surface the sky appears pink.
} "the unpredictable planet" - page 242
} "retrograde motion of the planet" - page 243
That is why they were called "planets". They wandered.
The word "planet" is from the greek "wanderer", "to wander", or "to
rush around". Look it up.
This is a simple result of the orbits instead of the (relatively) fixed stars.
It is how we find asteroids and planets NOW. You take two pictures and look
for relative movement between blinks.
} "Mars did not arouse any fears in the hearts of the ancient astrologers"
} [page 244]
I thought he just got through (page 242+) telling us how much it was
} "A conflict between Venus and Mars, if it occurred, might well have
} been a spectacle observable from the earth"
} [page 245]
Even IF such were to occur (at the orbit of mars), I would be slow to
call it a "spectacle". You really have to look at the right place to
FIND mars. Two tiny dots would hardly constitute a "spectacle".
} [names of Gods and planets identical, Athena ejected from Jove]
} [page 247]
First, the planets were named after the gods.
Second, Aphrodite is the greek equivalent to Venus, not Athena.
} "Aphrodite, the Goddess of the Moon"
} [page 247]
Huh? Aphrodite is the goddes associated with Venus. Selene is the goddess
associated with the moon (hence "selenology - a branch of astronomy that
deals with the moon.).
}"But what might it mean, that the planet Mars destroys cities, or that
} the planet mars is ascending the sky in a darkened cloud, or that it
} engages Athena (the planet Venus) in battle?"
[ page 251]
How about "The God of War chieftain of valor, was inspiring the warriors"?
And again, Athena is NOT associated with Venus, except, of course, to
} "Lucian is unaware that Athena is the Goddess of the planet Venus"
} [page 251]
So is everyone else, since she isn't. Aphrodite is.
} "The Greeks chose Athena, the Goddess of the Plane Venus, as their
} protector, but the people of Troy looked to Ares-mars as their
} [page 253]
The Greeks did not associate Athena with the planet Venus.
Troy had a very warlike history. They chose the God of War.
}In an old textbook on Hindu astronomy, the Surya-Siddhanta
} [page 256]
He doesn't say that they date from about 400 AD.
}"Mars... was instrumental in bring Venus from an elliptical orbit
} to a nearly circular orbit."
} [page 259]
First, Venus has not been in a very elliptical orbit for at least four
thousand years (see above). Second, this circular orbit would not be
inside of the orbit of earth if it were done so. You don't circularize an
orbit someplace else.
}"the swordlike appearance of the atmosphere of Mars, elongated on its
} approach to earth.."
} [page 262]
First, people can't see a thin atmosphere. Maybe the clouds or suspended
dust? Second, to make the clouds "swordlike", the tidal stress would do
in the solid part of the planet. But there it sits.
} [mars changing shape to look like animals equated to "Egyptians worship
} [page 264]
The close approach was suppose to significantly distort the spherical shape
of a planetary body without destroying it? Perhaps a review of the tidal
destruction of bodies would have been a nice thing for him to know. Does
the name "Roche" ring a bell?
} "The Babylonians called the year of the close opposition of mars
}"the year of the fire god""
} [page 267]
And the Chinese have "the year of the rat" and "the year of the snake".
I am more inclined to believe the reverse - given that Velikovsky decided on
to have an close approach, he looked up a place/time/name that would fit.
}"But if for some reason the charge of the ionsphere, the electrified layer
} of the upper atmosphere, should be sufficiently increased, a discharge
}between the upper atmosphere and the ground, and a thunderbolt would
} crash from a cloudless sky."
} [page 268]
If, for some reason, the ionization level of the ionsphere were to be
increased it would become a better conductor. Period. The rest is
absurd. Does Velikovsky know what "ionized" means?
}The Greek term for the collision of planets is syndos, which, in the
}words of a modern interpreter, requires a meeting in space and also
a collision of planets.
} [page 271-272]
Velikovsky doesn't inderstand `conjunction' of planets. He thinks it means
}"These ever recurrent earthshocks in a country as rich in oil as
}Mesopotamia also caused eruptions of earth deposits: ":The earth threw
}oil and asphalt," observed the official astrologers, as the effect of
} [page 275]
Earlier this stuff was suppose to be oil descending from the comet.
His story changes to match what he wants it to say. Not to worry -
he has it swapping back and forth and coexisting (though not delivered
at the same time/place together) all thorough his works.
}"Mountain building is a process the causes of which have not been
} established; the migration of continents is but a hypothesis."
The mountain ranges are quite well constructed at the points of collision
between continental plates. That and volcanic building work quite well,
are very predictable, and easily modeled. See above.
}" Pull, torsion, and displacement were responsible for mountain building,
} too." [thinks mars & venus pulled mountains up}
} [pages 277-278]
First, that model does nothing to explain the distribution of the
mountain ranges along the lines where the continental plates collide.
Second, to have enough tidal pull to distort the rigid components of the
surface permanently by miles (i.e. so far that will not even settle
after miles of displacement) you would first strip the hydrosphere and
atmosphere off the planet.
Third: You cannot focus gravity from a planet onto a small point at a
distance. The entire earth would become oblate, and but not just select
points. In fact, this effect is observed on a number of moons, as they
have become tidally deformed while they were plastic.
Finally, we have a fairly simple, straightforeward, and displayable
explanation. That isn't it.
} "They rushed in front of and around mars (it's satellites); in the
} disturbance that took place, they probably snatched some of mars's
}atmosphere, dispersed as it was, and appeared with gleaming manes"
} [page 280]
Come on. The escape velocity for these moons is around 20 mph and they
are amongst the DARKEST objects in the solar system. Direct observation
of them from satellites around mars shown no atmosphere at all.
These little moons would have been flung away if there were such a near
encounter. That they are there at all is proof that no such event has
happened in their lifetimes.
} [independent books of Joel and Vedas]
} [pages 281 and 288]
If the books are independent, how can Mars and Marut be cogitates?
} [meteorites noisy reentry]
} [page 283]
Nonsense. They are generally observed to be silent. I've seen quite a
few, but haven't heard any. There is an electronic crackle often associated
with their ionized contrail... Of course, if you managed to get wacked by
} [Isiah predict time of return of mars]
} [page 307]
Very good. Isiah could solve the full three-body problem with electric
and magnetic forces added. Wish he had included the formulation in the
} [a lot of talk on summer solstice and shadows]
} [page 315]
Good point. And gives one cause to wonder why the sites at Stonhenge and
the Pyramids align with the sun on exactly where the sun would have been
using only slow, predictable, and current progression and absolutely
NOTHING about V's sillyness is evident. And so he left it out.
} either these tablets do not originate from Babylon or this city
} actually was situated far to the north
} [page 315, and footnote 16 same page]
Velikovsky never tells the reader that Kugler cleared up the
problem there (the incorrect length of day in ancient Babylonia) in a later
}"A gnomon...shows midday to within half a second.
} [page 315, footnote 15]
Now the shadow that determines the time has a width of 250 times half a second.
Or does V. mean that the sundial is very accurately pointed south? But
that does not imply that it shows the time correctly.
Also sundials can't be used to determine the length of the day, because
they don't work at night . . .
} [Babylon move south ] - [page 315 to 316]
} [Faijum moves south ] - [ page 321]
} [ Thebes moves north] - [ page 321]
Notice anything odd here about nearby cities moving hundreds to thousands
of miles in different directions?
}Of course, a sundial or shadow clock from before -687 can no longer serve
}the purpose for which it was devised, but it might well be of use in
}proving out assumption.
} [page 321]
Instability of axis of earth deduced from just one wrong sun dial.
Now sun dials were often transported from one place to another, many of
them are correct, but errors are not unknown.
} [mammoth stuff]
} [page 326-327]
The original article extracted here is cited as "Farrand, Wm. R.;
_Science_,133:729-735, March 17, 1961 (Copyright, 1961 American Association
for the Advancement of Science)" My comments are in ; the material in ()
is included in the article.
"...In contrast to scientific efforts, a number of popular and quasi-scien-
tific articles have appeared in recent years, in which fragnmentary knowledge,
folk tales, and science fiction are combined under the guise of veracity--
much to the chagrin of scientists and the confusion of the public. The most
recent of such articles is that of [Ivan] Sanderson, who comes to the
conclusion that the "frozen giants" must have become deep-frozen within only
a few hours time. Such a thesis, however, disregards the actual observations
of scientists and explorers. Adding insult to injury, Sanderson proceeds to
fashion a fantastic climatic catastrophe to explain his conclusions....
"...The cadavers are unusual only in that they have been preserved by freez-
ing; the demise of the animals, however, accords with uniformatitarian
concepts...The ratio of frozen specimens (around 39) to the probable total
population (more than 50,000) is of the order of magnitude expected
among terrestrial mammals on the basis of chance burials. Furthermore, the
occurance of whole carcasses is extremely rare (only four have been found)...
"...There is no direct evidence that any wooly mammoth froze to death.
In fact, the
healthy, robust condition of the cadavers and their full stomachs argue
against death by _slow_ freezing. [their emphasis] On the other hand, the
large size of their warm-blooded bodies is not compatable with _sudden_ freez-
ing. In addition, all the frozen specimens were rotten...only dogs showed
any appetite for [the flesh]...'the stench [of decay]...was unbearable.'
"Histological examination of the fat and flesh of the Berezovka mammoth show-
ed, "deep, penetrating chemical alteration as a result of the very slow
decay," and even the frozen ground surrounding a mammoth had the same putrid
odor, implying decay before freezing [actually, no--the ground could have
thawed after the mammoth was frozen and permitted decay, then refrozen. ERE]
Furthermore, the stories of a banquet on the flesh of the Berazovka mammoth
were, "a hundred per cent invention."
"...The only direct evidence of the mode of death indicates that at least
some of the frozen mammoths (and frozen wooly rhinoceroses as well) died of
asphyxia, either by drowning or by being buried alive by a cavein or mud-
flow...Asphyxia is indicated by the erection of the penis in the case of the
Berazovka mammoth and by the blood vessels of the head of a wooly rhinoceros
from the River Vilyui, which were still filled with red, coagulated blood.
"The specific nature of the deposits enclosing the mammoths is not known
well enough to be very helpful as an indicator of the mode of death or burial.
Most of the remains are associated with river valleys and with fluviatile
and terrestial sediments, but whether the mammoths bogged down in marshy
places or fell into 'riparian gulies' or were mired in and slowly buried by
sticky mudflows is not clear...in Siberia only mammoths and wooly rhinoceroses
have been found frozen and preserved...
"...so far no other members of the contemporary Eurasian fauna [except
mammoths and wooly rhinos]...have been found frozen and well preserved. That
only the bulky and awkward 'giants' of the fauna are so preserved points to
some pecularity in their physique as a contributing factor...the mammoth,
with his stiff-legged mode of locomotion would have difficulty on such
[Siberian] terrain and moreover would not be able to cross even small gullies.
It would be nearly impossible for him to extricate himself if he had fallen
into a snow filled gully or had been mired into boggy ground...
"The stomach contents of the frozen mammoths indicate that death occured in
the warm season...when melting and soluflication would have been at a maximum
and, accordingly, locomation would have been difficult.
"...Digby was impressed by 'countless riparian gullies' that would have been
ideal mammoth traps...Vollosovich...theorized that an animal so trapped
might fall on its side and act as a dam, being slowly buried and suffocated
by mud. The Berezovka mammoth is commonly regarded as having fallen as a
cliff slumped beneath it; its broken bones attest to such a fall...the Mam-
ontova mammoth perished in a bog...Quackenbush [wasn't he also Groucho Marx?]
believed that his specimen from Alaska perished on a floodplain and that most
of the flesh rotted away...
"...All of these theories are credible and can be accepted as possibilities.
There seems to be no need to assume the occurance of a catastrophe."
Thanks to email@example.com
}"A year of 360 days" an entire chapter (8)
} [page 330 - 359]
Not to mention that this would come as a complete shock to the Mayans,
whose astronomical observations go back to the time when you claim the year
was only 360 days. Not only did their calendar have 365 days, it matches our
current year with greater accuracy than our Julian calendar does! It would also
come as a complete shock to the builders of Stonehenge, which has been dated
again to the same period (by C-14, and there is NO sign of flooding at the
site!). Various structures of Stonehenge allows one to predict various events
in the year, such as Midsummer's Day and lunar eclipses with excellent
accuracy. This would not be possible if the year were longer now than it was
then. There are quite a few other ancient observatories throughout the world,
all of which match quite nicely with our current year.
The Egyptians actually had both types of calendar at the same time;
their lunar calendar had 365 1/4 days, and their civil calendar had 12
months of 30 days with 5 holidays tacked on. These two calendars
diverge by one year in each 1460, and coincide in 2773bc. That's well
before 700 BC. They did *not* change from one to the other, but used
each for the cases in which it was most convenient.
The Babylonians used a lunar calendar with alternating months of 29 and
30 days, leading to 354 days in 12 months, not 360. Then an extra
month was added each three years, leaving an error of three days.
Later, they used the Metonic cycle, based on the observation that 19
solar years equals 235 lunar months. This led to a calendar which had
seven years with thirteen months in each 19 year cycle. This was also
the basis of the Jewish calendar.
Instability of the length of the year deduced from calendar reforms.
Calendar reforms were often performed. Maybe according to V. the earth
rotated slower in pre-revolutionary Russia, that kept to the Julian
calendar until 1917. Maybe the sun doesn't shine at all in Islamic
countries, that use a purely lunar calendar.
Any "everyone" used 360 days at the time? Maybe,
Except for the Mayans, the builders of Stonehenge, one of the ancient
American Indian tribes, etc. etc. etc. The 360 day calendar is not
NEARLY as prevalent as you suppose. The ancient Hebrew calendar, for
instance, consists of 13 lunar months. This makes for a year LONGER
than 365 days.
The year 360 days. Copied from Whiston. Argument: according to
Diogenes Laertius the year was divided into 365 days by Thales.
Now D.L. was a copist, who lived 1000 years after Thales. Whiston didn't
know that, but V. was in the position to judge the reliability of Diogenes.
The Greeks had lots of cultural heroes to whom all kinds of inventions were
attributed. That the year had 365.25 days was known a long time before Thales
to the Egyptians.
}Repeated changes in the course of the sun across the firmament led the
}astronomers of Babylon to distinguish three paths of the sun: the Anu
}path, the Enlil path, and the Ea path.
} [page 351]
"the paths of Anu, Ea and Enlil" are according to V. different
eclipticas, but long since the books appeared that V. quotes, assyriologists
have discovered that they mean the three main zones in the sky (summer, winter
} [lunar craters from molten surface bubbles]
} [ pages 360 - 362]
1. Rock does not cool from molten to solid nearly fast enough to leave rings.
2. No combination of orbit and spin could have produced the current shape
from a molten body.
3. The Apollo astronauts would have noticed this trivial detail. They didn't.
4. The rocks have been solid for millions, even billions, of years.
5. You get craters with impact on solids. No "semiliquid mass" is needed.
In fact, you get very nice looking, and similar appearing, craters by
impacting projectiles onto solids FAST (rail-gun fast). You even get
that central peak.
From the Lunar Receiving Laboratory: seven rocks were dated using the
K-AR method. They yielded consistent dates of 3.0+/-0.7 X 10^9 years.
Radiation exposure ages varied from 10X10^6 to approximately
160X10^6 years. This surface was NOT molten recently and the rocks
were NOT "bubbled up" from beneath the surface.
As an aside and relating to his magnetic points, the rocks brought back
solidified in the presence of a magnetic field that was only a few
percent of the present terrestrial field. It was NOT molten in the
presence of a megagauss field.
} [spectacular catastrophies on mars since it is smaller]
} [page 363-265]
Mariner 9, for instance, showed the surface and it had no such thing. The
planet is, if anything, less active than the earth.
}"The atmosphere of mars is invisible"
Interesting, since it looked like a sword just a little while back...
(when it was "a comet approaching earth")
BTW: From the surface it looks pink. National Geographic ran a
rather interesting series on the Mars pictures a while ago.
}"The white precipitated masses on mars, which form the polar caps, are
}probably of the nature of carbon, .... keeps this "manna" from being
} permanently dissolved under the rays of the sun."
} [page 366]
Carbon is black. Maybe he means Carbon Dioxide? That would be true, in
part (the permanent part is water), but that would disagree with his
Carbohydrates have a strong 3.5 micron absorption feature. The martian
polar cap doesn't. Mariners 6,7, and 9 have found abundant evidence
for frozen water and carbon dioxide, though.
}"The main ingredients of the atmosphere of Mars must be present in
}the atmosphere of the earth" [gas exchange during encounter]
} [page 366]
CO2 is the main component at the atmosphere of mars. It is a very minor
component of the atmosphere of earth. Nitrogen is the main component
of the atmosphere of earth, with oxygen coming in second. These gases are
not major components of the atmosphere of mars.
}".... argon and neon...on mars... Mars should be submitted to the test.
} If analysis should reveal them in rich amounts, this would also answer
} the question: What contributions did mars make to the earth when the
} two planets came in contact."
}[ page 367]
Viking landers: 96% Carbon dioxide, 2.5% nitrogen, 1.5% argon. Very small
traces of oxygen, krypton, and xenon were found. So the answer is:
None at all.
BTW: The heavier noble gases (krypton and xenon among them) have yet to
be found associated with comets...
"Mars emits more heat than it receives from the sun."
} [pages 367]
Mars does NOT emit more heat than it receives from the sun. It has been
observed from earth, orbit, mars orbit, and by landers. This simply is
not so. As a result of the studies from Mariner 6, 7, and 9 mapping
mars in broad infrared bands near 10-20 microns, the thermal map of
mars is known almost as well as earth and the moon. All the temperatures
are consistent with thermal equilibrium conditions, there is no indication of
an internal heat source.
}[more destruction on mars during encounter than on earth]
Not where the landers have put down there isn't.
Nor on the pictures from orbit.
}"The planet (venus) is covered by clouds of dust."
} [page 368]
What kind of dust? This is a zero statement. It does have clouds of sulfuric
acid droplets, though... (between 75% and 85% concentration)
}"...I assume that Venus must be rich in petroleum gases."
It isn't. 'Nuff said.
Of the sulfuric acid, hydrofluoric acid, and hydrochloric acid we see nothing.
No hydrocarbons. No carbohydrates. ESPECIALLY not from Mariner 2.
Read the data, not the press release. The reporters made that "petroleum
found" up. Sagan was, BTW, one of the scientists directly associated with
this probe and that instrumentation in particular. What he finds funny
is that it was postulated to fill the greenhouse hole (filled by CO2 and HOH)
to support the temperature. Immmanuel used non-data that was used to support
a theory he disclaims. Double wrong!
}"If the petroleum that poured down..."
Again, this confusion between hydrocarbons (petroleum) and carbohydrates
("manna") appears. Velikovsky appears to add the lack of knowledge of
chemistry to his lack of knowledge of astrophysics.
}"The fact that methane has been discovered on Jupiter- the only known
}constituents of its atmosphere are the poisonous gases methane and
}ammonia - makes it rather probable that it has petroleum.
} [page 369]
Unfortunately, the major constituents of the atmosphere of Jupiter
are hydrogen and helium, neither of which appear too abundant on Venus.
And the presence of methane, a VERY simple molecule, says nothing about
the presence of petroleum extraterrestrially. What you do is take
whatever Carbon happened to be there and chemically combine it with
the hydrogen that is EVERYWHERE. Presto! Methane.
}"... Venus - and therefore Jupiter - is populated by vermin; this organic
}life can be the source of petroleum."
} [page 369]
First, Venus has been directly visited on the surface by landers, in the
air by balloons, and from low orbit. NO indication of such "vermin"
Just for fun, let's say "vermin" existed on Jupiter. Now, given that
Venus is ejected at over 60 km/sec (Jupiter's escape velocity) and
less than 67 km/sec (vector addition of 60 kps jupiter escape and 20 kps
solar escape), which is WAY above the speed at which meteorites land
on earth, and the atmosphere of Jupiter is THICK, what's keeping these
things from being baked off as it exits by "reentry" (going up instead
of down) heat?
BTW: What mystical mechanism ejects a planetary at 60-67 kilometers
per second from a very select site (in the plane of the elliptic, on
the "back side" of the orbit so it will spiral inward)? We are talking
10^41 ergs here. That is about 9 1/2 months worth of the sun's _entire_
energy output, which suddenly is released in one moment!
}"The night side of venus radiates heat because Venus is hot"
} [page 371]
No kidding! Enough to melt lead on most of the surface. How much
do you think an entire world would cool overnight, if it started at
molten lead temperatures, the atmosphere formed a blanket that
retained the IR, and there are STRONG winds that redistribute the heat?
}"The reflecting, absorbing, insulating, and conducting properties
}of the cloud layer of venus modify the heating effect of the sun
}upon the body of the planet..."
True, and apparently even more than he thought. The common label
fastened to this observation is "greenhouse effect" The same
should happen to any terrestrial world that receives that much sunlight.
The calculated trigger for a runaway greenhouse is about 1.4 times the
solar flux on earth.
}"Venus gives off heat."
Correct, but misleading. It gives off just as much energy as it receives.
The thermal flux ("gives off heat") matches the incoming sunlight.
This is why, for instance, microwave brilliance readings have stayed
constant for decades. Besides which, you can measure the flux directly.
Just for fun:
If venus was travelling 500 kilometers per second (not odd for outter
sol system origin), and the sun's radius is 7x10^10 cm, the transit time
is appox 3000 seconds, less than an hour. How hot could it get? The
solar source in the photosphere is 6000 degrees K. Now, using the
Stefan-Boltzman law of thermodynamics, if there were NO other heating,
by now it would be 79 degrees kelvin. Cold. Real, real cold.
Now, just what happens to rock when you heat it to 6000 degrees?
And the vermin, manna, oil,.....
}"The core of the planet venus must be hot."
} [page 371]
Big deal. The core of EVERY planet is hot compared to its crust. Even
the moons of of the outter planets. Remember that volcano of sulfur (dioxide?)
}"Astronomers will see the planets stop or slow down in their rotation,
}cushioned in the magnetic fields around them..." [pluto and neptune]
} [page 372]
The magnetic fields of neptune and pluto are nowhere NEAR strong enough
to do this. We have sent probes, and these little metallic items were
not influenced in the least. We have sent a couple of Voyagers
through the entire solar system, with a few close approaches (Neptune
included). In spite of coming REAL close, and in spite of having a
lot of iron in their construction, the force in their precision
navigation was gravity. A force that did not measurably influence
a chunk of steel smaller than a car does not seem likely to be able
to bounce planets.
Sagan did the calculations as to what field strength would be
required - about 10 megagauss. This is a BIG magnetic field! Since
earth is .5 gauss, Mars and Venus are about .01, and Jupiter is less than
10, and the interplanetary flux is about 10^-5, and NO rock shows sign of
solidifying in a 10 megagauss field, I would say this is totally
}"Comets may strike the earth, as Venus did when it was a comet"
} [page 373]
Astounding, isn't it. Direct physical contact that didn't destroy both.
Look at the hole in arizona a LITTLE object made. Look at the iridium
layer that may have come from a meteorite a bit larger that exterminated
(possibly) most life on earth. Think what a planetary mass would do.
I doubt if the crust would survive anywhere on either. And they would
STAY in one piece, not split off again.
For some more fun:
Total kinetic energy in the collision:
KE = 0.5 (M_e + M_v) v_rel^2 where v_rel is the relative velocity.
v_rel has to be _at_least_ 11.2 km/s (Earth's escape velocity),
and should be larger (gravitational focussing; difference in orbital
This gives KE = 7 x 10^39 ergs. Considering the binding energy
estimate obtained previously, the collision bids fair to disrupt
both planets. It would be astounding if Earth_after were anything
at all like Earth_before!
(thanks for this from Mr. Gaetz!)
}"Facing many problems"
No kidding. Nothing but, the way I see it.
To pick a couple from Yaron P. Sheffer:
After very close encounterS with Earth, which have involved such drastic
effects as tidal disruptions, a complete halt of our planet's
rotation, then a restart at exactly the previous rate, etc.,
one would expect lots of space debris to float around both planets,
maybe even around Mars. A formation of ring systems seems to be very
plausible under the circumstances, YET NONE IS OBSERVED AROUND THESE
THREE TERRESTRIAL PLANETS. In fact, Venus has no natural sats whatsoever,
which are expected after a launch from Jupiter plus the following
planetary encounters. (Not to mention that Venus has been refered to
as a COMET, just about 1,000,000,000 times heavier than any normal comet
we usually see.) NOTE: 4000 YEARS OR SO IS AN INSUFFICIENT TIME SPAN
TO HAVE PLANETARY RINGS COMPLETELY DECAYING.
Major effects should have involved our moon, YET ALL WE SEE ARE QUITE
LUNAR MARIA AND UPLANDS WHICH HAVE BEEN DATED TO HAVE BEEN METEORITICALLY
ACTIVE NO LATER THAT 3 BILLION YEARS AGO.
Has anyone noticed any other events in which one planet launches another
towards other regions of the solar system...?? UH-UH!!
Even given "plausible" trajectories which stabilize within 4000 years
into almost circular (and at the exact available slot) orbits,
people IGNORE the machanism by which Venus has been Jovianly launched.
There are careful Sumerian records of their skies from ca. 5000 years
ago... which give accounts of observing Venus in its ever-normal
orbit, AS IF NOTHING HAS EVER HAPPENED VELIKOVSKY-WISE! Just a reminder:
Earth has stopped its rotation (legend-wise of course) about
2000 years after the Sumerian observations of Venus...
As has been mentioned already: The chemical composition of Venus is very
different from that of Jupiter. Instead of dealing with this simple
(yet anti-Velikovsky) hard fact from Reality, people went on to "reconsider"
plausibilities of orbital mechanics. But if there is no way to launch
Venus in the first place....
The solar system (INCLUDING VENUS) is 4,600,000,000 years old.
Why do people still consider "scenarios" for "events" which supposedly
occured in the last 0.000001 part of the solar system's age
as "favorable"? Or are these only people who are not updated
with the latest knowledge about our solar system? Hmmmm...
}[venus changed into a comet]
We know what venus is. Landers have been there. We know what comets
are. Probes have been there. Venus is not a comet.
BTW: If Venus was/is a comet, where is the tail? It is closer to the sun
now than it "was" during this supposidely dashing around. So where is
the tail now? And, given that the escape velocity is 6.4 miles per second,
how did it EVER have a tail? And for the "it is its atmosphere" crowd,
why is it bound now and wasn't earlier? The mass of venus was HIGHER
back "when it was a comet", and so its gravity was higher, so the
atmosphere would have been bound even tighter. Velikovsky tries to
convince us (later works) that the tail got wrapped around the planet
and is now the atmosphere. Nice to know how this happened...
}"Magnetic poles of earth became reversed only a few thousand years ago."
Nope. There are reversals, but none that recently. There is NO evidence of
such a proposition.
One would think that there would be some indicator, say in corals or
tree rings, of such. Velikovsky presents none. His only dream is that
of people using simpler math using a different base recorded what he
wants and not what was.. As a minor note, "december", means "tenth month".
Are we really only using ten now? The earlier civilizations often didn't
even NAME the latter months. The were more interested in the growing season.
That did not mean it was never winter.
}[venus night side heat]
} [page 380]
Absurd. See above.
}"solved the problem of mountain building..."
Absurd. See above.
}"This could be caused by the earth's passing through a strong magnetic
} field at an angle to the earth's magnetic axis."
} [page 385]
One would think that some indication of this magnetism would be found in the
rocks. It has not. And the spacecraft that measure the field-strength
near Venus found it to be significantly less than even the earth's.
}[slowing of the earths rotation]
Lets say that it was NOT done suddenly, since we can see features in Luray
Cavern that are older than this that could not take the stress. BUT, with
the earth's specific heat taken into account, and the rotational energy,
the earth would warm an average of 100 degrees celsius, more than enough
to boil the oceans. At low altitudes near the surface (where the people
usually are) the temperature would go up by 240 degrees. Yet, the
inhabitants didn't notice.
} [more on the magnetic slowing]
} [page 386]
Absurd. See above. No evidence at all.
}[decides an atom is a good model of the solar system]
} [page 387-388]
This flies in the face of observed QM effects.
}[A nova the result of the collision of two stars]
}[ page 388]
A nit here. Bear in mind the distinction between novae and
supernovae. Novae are thought to result from thermonuclear
flashes on accreting white dwarfs. Type II supernovae (like
SN 1987A) are thought to result from core collapse of massive
stars upon exhaustion of nuclear fuel. (The detection of neutrinos
from SN 1987A was a welcome confirmation of the core-collapse
hypotheses. Modelling core collapse is extremely tricky because the
explosion itself is a minor perturbation on the dynamics. I don't
recall the exact figures, but I seem to remember that about
10^54 ergs is released in neutrinos, compared to only 10^51 ergs
in the explosion itself. It doesn't take much of an error in the
numerics to convert an explosion to a fizzle.)
(another from Mr. Gaetz.)
odd thought, indeed! Maybe "some" or "one" or "maybe oughta"?
references for direct quotes from Immanuel Velikovsky"
Worlds in Collision
Earth in Upheaval
The Editors of Pensee
(has a lot of his papers in it, along with other papers pro-V.)
counter-velikovsky references I found during this search:
Scientists Confront Velikovsky
Beyond Velikovsky: The History of a Public Controversy
Henry H. Bauer
references that I have sitting here and referred to:
Computer Simulation of the Formation of Planetary Systems by S. Dole in
Icarus 13, 494-508 (1970)
Calculations on the Composition of the terrestrial Planets
Reynolds & Summers, Journal of Geophysical Research vol 74, no 10
May 15, 1969 p 2494
The formation of the Earth from Planetesimals
Wetherill, Scientific American June 1981
Fractionation of Iron in the Solar System
Harris & Tozer, Nature vol 215, Sept 30, 1967
Formation of the Sun and Planets
A. G. W. Cameron, Icarus 1, 13-69 (1962)
The Supercontinent Cycle
Nance, Worsley, & Moody, Scientific American, July 1988
Alfred Wegener and the Hypothesis of Continental Drift
A. Hallam, Scientific American Feb 1975
Goldreich, Peter, and Stanton Peale, "Spin - Orbit Coupling in the
Solar System", Astron. J. 71, 6 (August 1966), pp 425- 438
Cloud, Preston E., Jr., "Atmospheric and Hydrospheric Evolution on
the Primitive Earth", Science 160, (17 May 1968), pp 729 - 736
Hart, Michael H, "Habitable Zones About Main-Sequence Stars",
Icarus 37 (1979), pp 351 - 357
Mart, Michael H, "The Effect of a Planet's Size on the Evolution of
its Atmosphere", published in some conference or another; I
got a copy from the author. (Dave Allen )
Planets for Man
Our Evolving Atmosphere
Is Anyone There? by Isacc Asimov
Second Planet, Second Earth
S. L. Gillett, Analog Dec 84
The Steady State of the Earth's crust, atmosphere and oceans
Siever, Scientific American, May 1974
The Evolution of the Atmosphere of the Earth
Hart, Icarus, 33, 23-39, 1978
Evolution of the Atmosphere and Oceans
Holland, Lazar & McCaffery, Nature vol 320, 6 mar 1986
The Atmosphere of Venus
Schubert & Covey, Scientific American, July 1981, p66
The Runaway Greenhouse and the Accumulation of CO2 in the Venus Atmosphere
Rasool & Bergh, Nature, vol 226, June 13 1970
The Volcanoes and Clouds of Venus
Prinn, Scientific American, Mar 1985
Venus, Near Neighbor of the Sun
Structure of the Lower Atmosphere of Venus
C. Sagan, Icarus 1, 151-169 (1962)
Astronomy of the Ancients
K. Brecher and M. Feirtag
The Mystery of Comets
Fred L. Whipple
Geochemical exploration of the Moon and Planets
I. Adler and J. I. Trombka
The Planet Uranus: a history of observation, theory, and discovery
A. F. O'D. Alexander
The Planetary System
Morrison & Owen
Werelden in Botsing (Dutch) 1963
references from Matt Briggs on venus's atmosphere:
Dickinson, R. E. (1986). "Venus mesosphere and thermosphere, pt. 1,
heat budget and thermal structure," Jounral of Geophysical
Reasearch: 91 (70-80).
Kasprzak, W. T. (1986). "Wavelike perturbations observed in the neutral
thermosphere of Venus," Jornal of Geophysical Research: 93 (11237-
Hou, A. Y. (1989). "Further studies of the circulation of the Venus
atmosphere," Journal of Atmospheric Science: 46 (991-1001).
Lacis, A. A. (1975). "Cloud structure and heating rates in the
atmosphere of Venus," Journal of Atmospheric Science: 32 (1107-1124).
Walker, J. C. G. (1975). "Evolution of the atmosphere of Venus,"
Journal of Atmospheric Science: 32 (1248-1255).
reference from Perry G. Ramsey:
There is an article in the Journal of Atmospheric Sciences, June 1975
(in fact, the entire issue is about the atmosphere of Venus) by James Pollack
and Richard Young describing a radiative-convective model of the Venusian
Articles relating to geomagnetism:
Evolution of Overlapping Spreading Centers: A Sea MARC II Investigation
MacDonald, K. C. ; Fox, P. J
Stratigraphic Aspect of Paleomagnetic Studies of Bottom Sediments in Seas
Tretyak, A. N. ; Vigilyanskaya, L. I. ; Dudkin, V. P.
Magnetic Anomalies and Sea-Floor Spreading in the Western North
Atlantic, and a Revised Calibration of the Keathley (M) Geomagnetic
Tucholke, p857-876 1979
Vogt, P. R. ; Einwich, A. M
An Analysis of Near-Bottom Magnetic Anomalies: Sea-Floor Spreading and
the Magnetized Layer
Geophysical Jnl. of The Royal Astronomical Society v43 p387-424 1975
Klitgord, K. D. ; Huestis, S. P. ; Mudie, J. D. ; Parker, R. L.
Magnetic Study of Basalts from the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, Latitude 37 N
Geological Society of America Bull. v88 n70503 p637-647 May 77.
Johnson, H. Paul ; Atwater, Tanya
Geochronology of the Neogene Paleomagnetic Polarity Epochs
Proceedings of the Congress (6th), International Union of
Geological Sciences, Bratislava (Czechoslovakia), 4-7 Sep 75, v1 p303-305
Theyer, F. ; Hammond, S. R.
A Revised Time Scale of Magnetic Reversals for the Early Cretaceous and
Jnl. of Geophysical Research, v80 n17 p2586-2594, 10 Jun 75.
Larson, Roger L. ; Hilde, Thomas W. C.
Magnetic Lineations Observed near the Ocean Floor and Possible
Implications on the Geomagnetic Chronology of the Gilbert Epoch
Geophysical Jnl. of the Royal Astronomical Society, v28 p35-48 1972
Klitgord, K. D. ; Mudie, J. D. ; Normark, W. R.
Evidence for the Opening of the South Atlantic in the Early Cretaceous
Nature, v246 n5430 p209-212 23 Nov 73.
Larson, Roger L. ; Ladd, John W.
Faunal Extinctions and Reversals of the Earth's Magnetic Field
Geological Society of America Bulletin, v82 p2433-2447 Sep 71.
Hays, James D.
Age of the North Atlantic Ocean from Magnetic Anomalies
Earth and Planetary Science Letters 11 p195-200 1971.
Pitman, III, W. C. ; Talwani, M. ; Heirtzler, J. R.
Magnetic Reversals and Sedimentation Rates in the Arctic Ocean
Geological Society of America Bulletin, v81 p3129-3134 Oct 70.
Clark, David L.
Palaeomagnetism of Deep-Sea Sediments
International Dictionary of Geophysics, v2 p1134-1141 1967
Harrison, C. G. A.
Magnetic Anomalies over the Mid-Atlantic Ridge Near 27 Degrees N
Science v157 n3791 p920-3 Aug 1967
Phillips, J. D.
Reference for volcanic activity:
The End of Atlantis
References for the tree-ring data:
Scientists Hope Tree Rings Will Answer Questions About Past
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS DATE: June 16, 1988 12:44EDT
(Chris Stassen provided these)
Scientists Confront Creationism_,
L. Godfrey, Ed.;
New York: Norton, 1983. p. 35
New York: Viking, 1983. pp. 28-29, 224, 271-273
Principles of Isotope Geology
New York: Wiley, 1986. pp. 390-39
Science and Earth History
A. N. Strahler;
New York: Prometheus, 1987. pp. 155-158
Radiometric Dating, Geologic Time, And The Age Of The Earth:
A Reply To "Scientific" Creationism
Dalrymple, G. B.;
USGS Open-File Report 86-110, 1986. pp. 39-41
The Unexplained: A Sourcebook of Strange Phenomina
Science,133:729-735, March 17, 1961
Farrand, Wm. R.
"No amount of experimentation can ever prove me right;
a single experiment can prove me wrong." - Albert Einstein
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