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Ark

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Ark

The Headmaster
Posted on: 21 May 2006, 12:27pm

There are plenty of unsavoury episodes in the Bible. One of the worst, in my eyes, is the story of Noah and his Ark. A conscious god, who we are later expected to believe is benevolent, observes some louche behaviour among his own human creations and, rather than ticking them off or removing their toys, decides to exterminate all non-aquatic animal life on earth*. Save for a few samples to play with later.

You may say I'm taking a moral tale a bit literally, but that's how it was taught when I was a child, and still is in many places. Of course, children aren't stupid, and it seemed a little far-fetched even then that a 600 year old man having knocked up a big boat could then herd together two** of every animal from aardvarks to kangaroos to polar bears to to zebras, find and load enough food for a long voyage*** and then repopulate the world with his wife, their three sons, their wives, and the animals****. The story was added to the growing list of 'things adults tell you that aren't true', and so served a purpose that way.

Not that I'm denying that there may have been disastrous flooding. Different cultures may have wildly different creation myths, but the deluge crops up with regularity. Perhaps as a cultural memory of a local tsunami, perhaps it was the global event of the inundation at the end of the last ice age. There's tantalising evidence of civilisations existing at that time that were more advanced than generally supposed, and it's not unreasonable to suppose that more human history has been forgotten than has been uncovered.

But the ark? It's an artifact from one religion's mythology and as such could be considered politically incorrect.

* Fresh water fish might also have had a hard time.

** Only 'unclean' animals were collected in twos, 'clean' animals in sevens.

*** According to Genesis it was over a year before Noah let the animals out again. 40 days was how long the floods took to engulf the earth ('it rained for 40 days and 40 nights' in the Sunday school version). The ark then floated around for seven and a half months before running aground. After another two and a half months the mountain tops became visible. With the waters receding, Noah dithered 40 more days before opening a window. He then spent a few weeks testing the situation with birds. It was only when the last puddle had dried up on the twenty-seventh day of the second month of the second year that God gave Noah permission to leave the ark.

**** Minus the ones he burnt as an offering on disembarkation - of the 'clean' animals he slaughtered at least one of each species.

The Headmaster
Added on: 6 December 2006

The ark has now taken to the water, and some passengers are taking the air. Mass slaughter lies submerged in the depths below.

If you didn't think the world was mad enough already, take yourself off to www.godsark.org, the site where Pastor Richard Greene explains how he is building a 'full size' replica of Noah's ark. Except that come the next flood it won't float, and it isn't planned to include a zoo. Don't miss the 'architectural design' pages - www.godsark.org/html - including some 'conceptual ideas' drawn with a thick crayon.

The text on this page is archived from The Politically Incorrect Alphabet Forum - which unfortunately broke on August 2nd 2006 through overuse. A list of completed un-PC illustrations and their archived threads can be found here.

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