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Jan. 25th, 2010 @ 03:49 pm The Book of Genocide
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Date:April 3rd, 2010 03:02 pm (UTC)
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A point of education and clarification. The antecedent to the worldwide flood narrative is found in the Epic of Gilgamesh, including many of the same details that later appear in Genesis, such as the bird who heralds dry land.

In any event, the Deluge continues to occupy a central place in the evangelical Christian imagination -- consider all those expeditions to Mount Ararat -- and yet the whole ark narrative is fundamentally a celebration of divine genocide: hence the admittedly provocative title of my posting.

You're certainly right that Sodom and Gomorrah is not at the center of the Christian argument -- but the entire enterprise *does* turn on the Fall of Man as recorded in the Torah (though that is not how a Jew would read the Garden of Eden story). Dip into Christian theological literature, from Augustine to Kierkegaard, and you'll see what I mean.

I believe your quarrel should not be with liberal secular humanists like myself, whose views are radically and demonstrably at odds with two thousand years of Christian anti-Semitism, but rather with the evangelicals and the Rapture mongers. You seem to be angrily invested in an anti-secularism whose roots elude me.

I heartily agree with you that we must not strain on the gnat of Sodom while swallowing the camel of Jihad. Thousands of atheists, secularists, and feminists have expressed their disgust with radical Islam over the years -- consider, for example, Sam Harris's widely read "The End of Faith" -- and I'm bewildered that you imagine otherwise. But that is another day's discussion.

Edited at 2010-04-03 04:51 pm (UTC)