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WILD COOT: Warming my cockles

HARRY RUSSELL, [email protected]

WILD COOT: Warming my cockles

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An article appearing in the Tuesday, October 20

Daily Nation caught my attention and warmed the cockles of my heart. For a long time now, I have been bombarded with criticism for my open suggestion that mankind came from snails.

The article in the papers by Mr Daley Reece does not affirm my contention. However, it poses serious questions of the basic concepts of the Holy Book that claims that “in the beginning was the word”. What does that mean? A careful analysis of Mr Reece’s article would show that he is not arguing against the existence of a God, but seems to me to be implying that the Earth had an existence long, long before any concept of a Jewish beginning.

What to me is implied by Genesis is that the people of those times needed to have laws and regulations for their society as people of even older times had had in force already. Thou shall not kill, thou shall not commit adultery, thou shall not covet thy neighbour’s wife/husband, and thou shall not ‘tief’, to name a few.

If we imply that there was an older world, it would give credence to a belief that there was a developmental process in the existence of mankind and that development process could very well be seen as the various stages we find in animals today on earth.

Mankind is an animal – and a vicious one too. Mankind can be as vicious as a lion or a shark or an alligator as we see daily. Development is seen, as has been pointed out in the article referred to, in various other areas, so why not in the animal kingdom. The DNA is the basic building block seen in anything that shows life. Funny enough, the Good Book does not say that the animals and birds were conceived from dust, but happen to have varying quantities of the same DNA as mankind.

My dictionary describes an amoeba as a one-celled semi-fluid animal that feeds and moves by means of a pseudopodia (a retractable extension of the body of a protozoan – lowest zoological division) used in moving or feeding. While the Wild Coot has found the snail a likely beginning, this is not a far-fetched amoeba. It is far more glorious and romantic to abide by “dust thou art and to dust thou shall return” that we hardly stop to think of the lack of logic.

Another story that seems to lack logic is the detailed rendition of how God destroyed the “earth” because of the sins of some people in a city. The ISIS lucky! The account goes into detail about how Noah got his instructions from God. However, the idea that the flood covered the whole world is very unlikely since Noah only lived in a very small part of the world. How about the continent of South America? How about the continent of Africa? It seems unlikely that the flood covered all of the continents.

Furthermore, it seems impossible that Noah could have been able to get animals and plants from all parts of the world into an arc the size specified. That the lion, tigers, alligators, “santapee” and other animals could live for such an extended time without food or killing each other is past credibility. Unless the children of Noah were adept at navigating the earth, the other continents separated by the sea would have had to wait a few centuries for sailors to come, discover and populate.

The explanation of a rainbow has been successfully given and rather than destroying the earth by water, it seems that water is going to be the most critical element in the near future as climate change takes over. We are more likely to suffer from extreme heat than anything else.

Mankind is close to exhausting the benefits of the Garden of Eden and the latest news is that very soon we shall be establishing a permanent station on the moon in search of water. If water is found, then we shall set about exploiting its riches, if there are any.

The last paragraph of Mr Reece’s article debunks the whole biblical explanation of God’s week in bringing the world into being. It was just another thought.

I have no problem whatsoever with same-sex marriage and the practitioners thereof. Love will find a way. What baffles me is how they go about making children. I know that they are not gods so they cannot take up a handful of dust and make a baby à la Bible. So how in heaven’s name do they procreate? Interesting.

 Harry Russell is a banker.