Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Harvey, Irma, Jose … and Noah

From The New York Times-

Is there anything we can learn from hurricanes, storms and floods?

People have been asking that question for thousands of years, and telling stories that try to make sense of natural disasters. These flood myths are remarkably similar to one another.

A researcher named John D. Morris collected more than 200 of them, from ancient China, India, Native American cultures and beyond. He calculates that in 88 percent of the tales there is a favored family. In 70 percent, they survive the flood in a boat. In 67 percent, the animals are also saved in the boat. In 66 percent, the flood is due to the wickedness of man, and in 57 percent the boat comes to rest on a mountain top.

The authors of these myths are trying to make sense of vast and powerful forces. They are trying to figure out what sort of world they live in. Is it a capricious world, where cities are destroyed for no reason? Or perhaps it’s a just but merciless world, where civilizations are wiped out for their iniquity?

More here-

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