Faith and Mythology: The Gilgamesh flood

Of course, the Babylonians had a flood story too in Gilgamesh. In fact, just like in Genesis, the flood and creation are told in the same book and are closely related. In Gilgamesh:
  • A snake steals a magical plant that can restore health.
  • Innocence is associated with nakedness, lost when wisdom is attained, but in Gilgamesh this is an achievement rather than a failure.
  • Flood caused by divine anger (but this time gods at war, rather than gods angry with men).
  • A god warns the flood is coming and tells hero how to build a boat.
  • The hero carries family and animals on the boat.
  • Three birds are released to check if the flood’s subsiding. (Three, like the sides of a triangle, represents divine certainty.)
  • After the flood, the boat is left on top of a mountain.
  • A rainbow appears in the sky after the flood (as a result of a goddess throwing her diamond necklace there).
Which story sounds more “mythological," the Bible or Gilgamesh? And which has the more "scientific" details? And just in case you're still thinking Noah's flood can't possibly be scientific...
  • Civilization is thought to have been centered around the Black Sea plain—a warm place, cut off from the Mediterranean as it froze, with a river flowing away from the Mediterranean. Farming could well have spread throughout many cultures from here--the beginning of the need to store seed and keep animals safe.
  • Global climate change (warming) at the end of the mini-ice age would have caused the Med to rise till it flooded over the Straits of Bosporus. There’s evidence of farming below the Black Sea, seed crops completely flooded to enormous depth in the space of a single year (around 5600BC). And the straits still have a sub-current flowing away from the Med at the bottom.

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