Top Ten Reasons Noah’s Flood is Mythology

There are several good treatments of this subject at other websites, for example, see this from the National Center for Science Education (NCSE): The Impossible Voyage of Noah’s Ark, and also this from TalkOrigins: Problems with a Global Flood. But here we’ll give you our own humble list. Due to the subject matter, it won’t be remarkably original:

Number 10: Where’s the Ark? Surely, the survivors of such an expedition would have remembered the location of the Ark. It’s hard to believe they wouldn’t have built a monument or something — perhaps not as elaborate as one of the Pyramids, or even Stonehenge, but surely they would have done something to mark the resting place of the vessel that preserved them and all life on Earth. But we’re expected to believe that they just walked away and let the thing fade into oblivion.

Number 9: Why has Noah been forgotten? Except for those cultures that have been exposed to the tale of the Ark as found in the Old Testament, no other people on Earth remember the name of Noah — the father of us all. It is absurd in the greatest degree to think that nations which routinely preserve the names of their great kings, warriors, and heroes, have somehow forgotten about Noah, to the point where they don’t even remember his name or the fact that he once existed. [See also: Other Names for Noah?]

Number 8: Who was Noah’s wife? Somehow, the mother of all mankind remains unnamed in Genesis. Not only that, but the wives of Noah’s sons are also unnamed. Again, this is an absurdity. There are non-scriptural texts that provide names for such people, but they are all in disagreement as to what those names were. See Wives aboard Noah’s Ark.

Number 7: Conditions aboard the Ark were unsurvivable. We have previously estimated that they were at least ten times worse than the accommodations aboard a slave ship. See How Horrible Was Life Aboard Noah’s Ark? For our comparison of Noah’s waste removal problems with the similar task faced by Hercules in cleaning the Augean stables, see Waste Disposal on Noah’s Ark.

Number 6. Biogeography is all wrong. If every species of animal on Earth radiated out from the landing site of the Ark, today’s living varieties and their fossilized ancestors should reveal that pattern of dispersal. But as Darwin observed on his round-the-world voyage on the Beagle, the actual distribution of animal life is quite different. See chapters 11 and 12 of Origin of Species here.

Number 5: Where is the evidence of universal population bottlenecks? Except for a few species known to have recently recovered from near extinction, animal life on Earth shows far too much genetic diversity to be descended from only a pair of Ark-borne ancestors a few thousand years ago.

Number 4: What about the water? One of our readers (docbill) told us about this website: All Water On Earth As Sphere Compared To Size Of Earth. Enough water to cover the entire Earth to the height of the tallest mountains would require a much larger sphere of liquid. Where did that extra water come from, and more importantly — where did it go?

Number 3: What about Egypt? They have a written history that precedes, is co-existent with, and which continues uninterruptedly after the time of the Flood, yet somehow they were unaware of that catastrophic global event. The same is true for the Chinese and other cultures. How did a global Flood somehow ignore them, leaving their societies intact?

Number 2: The Earth’s geology is all wrong if there were a recent global flood. This topic is not only too large to explain here, but there’s also the limitation that your Curmudgeon isn’t a geologist. Nevertheless, we know that it was the development of geology that caused belief in the Flood to be discarded. We once posted briefly about one bit of geological evidence that clearly contradicts the Flood myth. See Can Noah’s Flood Explain Banded Iron Stripes?

And the Number One reason the Flood is mythology is: It didn’t work! We’re told that the purpose of the ghastly planet-killing exercise is that mankind was wicked. That’s the reason everything was cruelly destroyed — except for Noah, his righteous family, and their chosen menagerie. Okay, fine, but there’s one little detail — the whole business was a colossal futility! There is still wickedness in the world, which means the planetary slaughter was not only cruel beyond imagining, it was also stupid. But even a creationist would agree that such behavior is incompatible with the nature of God, so the only rational conclusion is that the Flood is a childish myth.

Okay, there you are — the Curmudgeon’s top ten reasons. Feel free to add your own.

Copyright © 2012. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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26 responses to “Top Ten Reasons Noah’s Flood is Mythology

  1. I was invited to do a fossils-rocks-minerals display at a local middle school “Science Day” several months ago. I pulled out all the coolest samples from my collection for kids to oooh and aaaah at. I tried to excite them by pointing out the 4.5 billion year old Moon rock and asteroid belt rocks. One girl said “What about the Flood?” I said there was no geologic evidence for Noah’s Flood. She got a blank, yet shocked look on her face. Her father took her aside to “explain things”. I was torn between wanting to laugh and wanting to cry.

  2. They have “explanations” for a lot of these, though they are generally pretty weird and often out and out wrong. Examples:

    #2 – They say it’s all RIGHT if there was a Flood, and that it is the nasty evolutionists who can’t explain things.
    #3 – They have elaborate re-descriptions and re-countings of post-Flood civilizations like Egypt (lots of pharaohs co-existing in different areas of Egypt) and China (largely ignored).
    #4 – Geography pre-Flood was different – lots of rolling hills and no mountains like the Himalayas. Water came from and then was subducted back into Earth’s mantle.
    #5 – Super-duper, crazy, insanely fast speciation after the Flood lasting about 200 years and then calming down.

    And most of the others are answered with similar “explanations”.

  3. Why do people believe the flood story is real or any of the other flat out wrong stories in the bible? Two words: Stockholm Syndrome.

  4. One reason to believe Noah’s flood is a myth is the fossil record. It is not conceivable that a worldwide flood would bury (and instantly fossilize) all types of plants and animals in discrete layers everywhere in the world, in a pattern indicating descent with modification. Similarly, a global flood would not produce fossil tracks and leaf impressions at various levels in the same geological column. If all plants and animal were created at the same time, then destroyed in a global flood, the resulting fossils (if any) would be randomly distributed.

  5. Well, that certainly answeres the question: “Who is the greatest mass murderer of all time.” Without question.

  6. Here’s a site for you, cognitivediscopants what if god threw a flood and nobody came. (Sorry, I never get linky things to work). A good breakdown of what was happening around the world during the flood.

  7. Curmy,
    Once again you are peeing into the wind. Whether we are talking about Christianity, Judaism or Islam, there are people that become psychotic in their belief system. While they can function in dailey life with all of our scientific advancements and technology, their religious belief system will not function unless the Bible, Torah or Koran is a factual, historical proof of their god. Until Galileo tried to inform the Catholic church that the earth went around the sun not the sun around the earth, no one challenged the acceptable biblical belief system. We have come a long way from that day in our understanding of the complexity of the earth, life and the universe and STILL AIG exists. There are Hasidic Jews, Shiite and Sunni Muslims who all base their religious belief system on a rigid interpretation of scripture as taught by their religious leaders. Along with our Creationists, they are all at odds with our scientific knowledge of today.
    Intellectually there are a lot of people who are no different from our ancestors of 2,000 years ago. After all, in terms of the evolution of our species, 2,000 years is a nanosecond. It’s amazing that there are as many of us as there are who have evolved the ability to revise our religious belief system as we progress in our scientific understanding of life.

    Oh well back to fun and games.

  8. I’m a geologist but please, don’t take me for granite. ba-dump.
    I have my faults. ba-dum dum.
    But, I know my schist . ba dum dum dump.
    Two words for flood geology can be used to describe it.
    Ignorant garbage (okay more?). Really ignorant garbage.
    As with evolution articles, there are zero geology articles in modern scince jouranls supportive of a worldwide flood chronology replacing the sceince of geology and its inter-related sub fields.
    Nice interpretation of a David Letterman list though SC!
    My less serious list of Top Ten reason’s why Noah’s flood is mythology.
    #10 Paleozoic trilobites were invented by Pan, the Greek God of Nature. He totally would not have let them drown.
    #9. Mrs Noah was a surfboarder from SoCal and dind’t like longboards like the ark. She covered it with wax on a hot day, it melted and everyone fell off.
    #8. Rhinos mating during the arduous voyage would have punched holes in the hull.
    #7 Carnival cruiseline had a special at the time and everyone would have gone there instead
    #6 Legionaires disease
    #5 President OBama sank the ark by burying it in federal food stamps
    before it could float.
    #4 The ark was really designed to look like an Edsel and the gorillas set it on fire before they had to put out their eyes They never had to look at it again.:)
    #3 Japeth jumped overboard in Asia, Ham in Australia and Shem near Tennessee .It then capsized, .
    #2 Aliens from Mars made up the whole story
    and now
    the #1 Reason the Noah’s Ark story is mythology is;
    Noah spent alot of time at his dad’s brewery during construction
    and the ark really looked like a small beer barrel(a firkin).
    Word got around with the chimps. ” Don’t get in the firkin ark”.

  9. doodlebugger says: “I’m a geologist but please, don’t take me for granite. ba-dump.”

    You used me as your stratum man.

  10. Sorry but those are at best reasons 2 – 11. THE #1 reason, by a landslide, is that if there were the slightest shred of evidence the Discoveroids would be all over it. Instead they have almost completely ignored it for decades, except for a breathtakingly pathetic encouragement to believe it despite lack of evidence. And that statement – revealing a mind-numbing double standard (to be consistent they’s also encourage believing evolution despite their claim of lack of evidence) – was made only to protect someone’s job at the seminary.

  11. A search of my library of hidden lore reveals that the name of Noah’s wife was … Beulah. (Rimshot!)

  12. Thats a really gneiss chert you have on in that picture SC ..!

  13. Doctor Stochastic

    So instead of Turkey, perhaps the search parties should try Beulahland.

  14. Dr Sto says search parties should try Beulahland.
    Or the Tigris Euphrates river vallley in Iraq where massive annual floods inundate large areas . Swamp Arabs have an entire culture based on living in this inundated landscape . Scholars have asserted that this is the source
    of the Moahs Ark myth .
    Here’s another myth killer . Sedimentary basins throughout the world have successions of strata where extinction events
    of benthos foraminifera can be used to
    correlate and place in the strat column. basin wide sedimentary beds. The time frame of the flood geology tale would require worldwide and basin wide speciation and extinction events of forams
    on a weekly basis throughout the 6000 years of earth history. Ridiculous and unsupportable by data and logic. The myth is just that.
    a Middle East tale passed down from somewhere in the central part of that region.
    Ridiculous gibberish scientifically .

  15. There’s one good reason for seeing the story as myth: Read it. It’s clearly a myth, a fantasy story. Nobody reads the Lord of the Rings, the Narnia or Oz books and thinks “I wonder of all that happened for real”. So why do they not apply the same simple line of reasoning to the story of Noah and the flood?

  16. Numbers 10, 9 and 8 are explainable by the chaos that followed the Tower of Babel episode, and the fact that the Ark’s presumed location is not in habitable terrain. Of course the other 7 are more than adequate for the purpose – and 7 is a better number anyway.

  17. Dave, one more thing is that the story is not internally consistent. It is clearly a mixture of two versions. It gives two different chronologies of events. It says that two of all animals were taken, and elsewhere that seven of the “clean” animals and birds were taken. Yes, I know that a determined person can make the Bible support whatever they want to believe, but the problems with the text was one of the reasons why serious Bible scholars came up with the Documentary Hypothesis.

    If I were going to make a list of reasons that there was no universal Deluge, I’d choose an outline of the history of geology in which, step by step, geologists were compelled to abandon various beliefs about a world-wide flood in recent times. Such as done by:
    David R. Montgomery
    The Rocks Don’t Lie: A Geologist Investigates Noah’s Flood
    New York: W. W. Norton, 2012

  18. It’s really quite breathtaking that one still needs to point out all these basics, in the United States in the 21st century.

    Really, the Discoveroids should be having this argument with the YEC’s if they are genuinely concerned about Science and Education.

    Oh, wait….

  19. Number 11: The fish, squid, starfish, salps, ctenophora, etc in oceans, and the fish of rivers and lakes! The Ark had no aquaria. Most freshwater fish cannot stand even small amounts of salt in the water. Most salt-water fish and invertebrate groups are unable to survive long even in brackish water. If flood-water rose to about a mile or two over sea level, sea water would have become diluted by 40-60% or more by rain water. As water rose to the height of Mount Everest, salt content would have diminished to 10-20% that of sea water. This is too much salt for most freshwater species and too little salt for marine life. The few fish and invertebrate species that could have survived would have been brackish water forms, and the flood would have spread the survivors over all the oceans and continents. However, there are still fish, and starfish, in the sea, and distinct species-rich fish faunas have evolved on and around the edges of each continent.

  20. And what about the plants? There’s no mention of a Herculean effort to save all of the plant species, and yet… here they are. And where would that dove have found the branch of a mature olive tree? It seems that ancients didn’t quite understand that plants were actually living things.

  21. My username flipped because I posted from my iphone last night. Oops.
    Fizzy,,,,,,back to doodlebugger

  22. doodlebugger says: “I’m a geologist but please, don’t take me for granite. ba-dump.”

    Nah. It sounds like you’re a gneiss guy.

  23. One you are looking at the story all wrong. For number ten of your question
    Not all species were selected for the journey. Check the story over. Two you will have to find at http:\\ where they are working on the story.

  24. @Benabu: A quick search of that site reveal no such story. If you are going to post some junk, then at least try to actually post about junk that exists. I’m in the mood for some serious invidious caricatures, and I’ll be darned if I’m going to waste good material on the like of you.

  25. My question is, did god send the flood because s/he had a gigantic headache the day he started all that rain? It would seem to me that since s/he knows all, the fact that this was doomed to be an exercise in futility should have been apparent to a deity who was really on the ball. Maybe s/he was so pissed at not being able to find the aspirin that s/he was cranky and just let loose with all s/he had.