Jump to content

My Response To "god And Science's" Critique Of My Feasibility Study.


Pegasus_Voyager
 Share

Recommended Posts

I tried several times unsuccesfully to register as a user on "God and Science" to address these challenges to my feasibility study. It kept asking for a "confirmation code" which I never found. However, the website rules say it is not a forum for debate, so it is probably best to post my responses to their critiques in "friendly territory" anyway.

 

 

 

 

Posted: Sat Dec 02, 2006 6:16 am Post subject: Was the Ark possible?

 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Could some people take a look at A Series of Logistical Feasibility Studies of Noah's Ark and comment on it here?

 

Thank you...

_________________

The Bible says they were "willingly ignorant". In the Greek, this means "be dumb on purpose". (Kent Hovind)

 

PEGASUS_VOYAGER RESPONSE: I would be hesitant to quote Kent Hovind. Obviously, he chose to be willingly ignorant of America's tax laws, and willingly broke the law, which the Bible expressly forbids.

 

Back to top

 

 

Fortigurn

 

 

 

Joined: 12 Oct 2005

Posts: 823

 

Posted: Sat Dec 02, 2006 7:15 am Post subject:

 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Quote:

I. FEASIBILTY STUDY #1. Could eight humans have built the ark in 100 years, the actual time that the Bible seems to allocate to Noah to build the Ark?

 

[...]

 

The outer surface area of the ark was 114,750 square feet. My basis for this figure is as follows: The port and starboard sides of the vessel were 450 feet by 45 feet (20, 250 square feet each) The roof and bottom of the vessel were 450 feet by 75 feet (33,750 square feet each) The fore and aft sections of the vessel were 75 feet by 45 feet (3, 375 squre feet each) To give you a general idea of how much wood this is, a wooden plank 12 inches wide, 114, 750 feet long would be 21.7 miles in length.

 

If we assume three decks internally, as recorded on the Bible, plus the floor covering the water (See feasibilty study below) , that would add another 135,000 square feet.(if calculated two dimensionally)

 

Factors impossible to calculate would be the amount of wood necessary for transverse or longitudinal beams, the keel, stockpens, support beams, storage areas, and bulkheads, as these specifics are not discussed in the Bible.

 

 

His calculations are off:

 

* The nearest proximate palaeographical data we have for the cubit of Genesis 6 is the 9th century Siloam inscription, which uses a 17 inch cubit

 

* This results in an Ark of about 420 feet long

 

PEGASUS_VOYAGER RESPONSE: My calculations are based on a reference in the King James Version of the Bible, of which my parents gave me a copy my first year in the Army, 1980. Also, don't you think you're "shooting yourself in the foot" by saying it was shorter? You're already strapped for space in this thing as it is. Of course, your intent was to subtly suggest my feasibility study is flawed by implying I don't know the true definition of a cubit. If you consult most references, they will say that a cubit will range from 17 to 21.88 inches.

 

* He is assuming a solid wooden roof for the Ark, which is nowhere described in the text (in fact the 'covering' for the Ark uses a word which is always used of a tent like covering made from linen or skins)

 

PEGASUS_VOYAGER RESPONSE: In other words, you're saying that Noah and his family sewed together a roof the size of a circus tent? Please! I'll echo mwc's response. Are you really serious when you imply that this thing could hold up in a torrential downpour? But your point is irrelevant. I conceded that the project was feasible and "do-able" even if there was a wooden roof. So why even bring up the roof issue? You are "sound-biting" me, setting up a straw-man that doesn't exist, and attacking it. I thought Christians were supposed to be totally honest in everything. Obviously not in apologetics. Once again, you wish to discredit the entire study with a trivial point. If the roof being made of wood made the project improbable, your point would be relevant, but to reiterate, I conceded that the project was feasible given a century or more to do it.

 

* He also strangely supposes that only eight humans were involved in building the Ark (I have no idea why)

 

PEGASUS_VOYAGER RESPONSE: To echo mwc's response, because the Bible doesn't say otherwise. Evangelicals/fundamentalists take the Bibe literally when it suits them, then put words in the authors mouths and read into it what isn't there when it's necessary to support their conclusions.

 

Then he says this:

 

Quote:

Many naval architectural engineers have concluded, though, that a wooden ship built with no metal structural supports and only pitch "gluing" it together could be no longer than 300 feet and still maintain structural integrity on the high seas. Did Noah find a way around this limitation?

 

 

He is so badly offbase here it's not even funny.

 

Western ships beyond this 'limit' were built when ship design was improved with diagonal bracing in 1807 (the design was the problem, not the wood), and ship design in the Ancient Near East was much better (even certain ancient Egyptian ships were built longer than this supposed 'limit').

 

The Greek historian Memnon describes a timber warship built in the 3rd century BC which was around 100 metres long (about 300 feet). The Roman historian Plutarch describes a timber warship built for Ptolemy IV (around 200 BC), which was 128 metres long (about 390 feet). The largest of the Chinese baochuan ('treasure ships'), of the 15th century reached 125-160 metres in length (400-480 feet), and were made of wood.

 

Successful wooden ships of this size require nothing more sophisticated than such timber technology as mortise and tenon joinery, tension cables ('hogging trusses'), and bulkheads or internal bracing, such as transverse lashing and lateral or longitudinal strength beams.

 

The Chinese baochuan were built using mortise and tenon joinery instead of nails, and used transverse and longitudinal bulkheads (compartments in the hull facing sideways or lengthways), for strength. The Greek warships described by Memnon and Ptolemy used mortise and tenon joinery with hogging trusses, to provide strength to the hull. Egyptian tomb reliefs as early as Dynasty IV (2,613-2,494 BC), show tension trusses being used, and they are known to predate this era.

 

Egyptian inscriptions as early as the reign of Khufu I (2,589-2,566 BC) show ships built with internal bracing techniques such as lateral and longitudinal strength beams, and transverse lashing. Longitudinal strength bulkheads are found in the Egyptian Middle Kingdom era (between 1,991 BC and 1,648 BC), showing that this technology was used from a very early date in the Ancient Near East.

 

In Mesopotamia, copper was used to make hammers and nails, adzes, chisels, axes, and drill bits from before 3,500 BC, mortise and tenon joinery was used from at least the same time, whilst timber boats using sails and copper nails appear as early as 3,500 BC.

 

Noah was a Mesopotamian, who would have used contemporary Mesopotamian construction techniques, meaning the Ark would have used mortise and tenon joinery, longitudinal strength beams, tension trusses, and hogging trusses, just like other ships built in the Bronze Age.

 

The Ark was also built with internal compartments which may have acted as primitive bulkheads:

 

Quote:

Genesis 6:

14 Make for yourself an ark of cypress wood. Make rooms in the ark, and cover it with pitch inside and out.

 

 

Successful timber ships over 67 metres long, carrying heavy loads, and built before the 19th century (Egyptian obelisk barges, Greek warships, Chinese baochuan), used the following technology:

 

• Mortise and tenon joinery

• Internal bulkheads

• Tension trusses

• Hogging trusses

• Transverse lashing

• Lateral and longitudinal strength beams

 

In some cases, only three out of these five techniques were used, whereas Noah's ark demonstrably used at least four of these techniques, and most likely five (excepting the bulkheads).

 

We know that ships this large were built. From a tomb inscription in Late Bronze Age Thebes (Egypt):

 

Quote:

'I inspected the erection of two obelisks ////// built the august boat of 120 cubits in its length, 40 cubits in its width, in order to transport these obelisks. (They) came in peace, safety and prosperity, and landed at Karnak ////// of the city.'

 

Tomb inscription of Aneni, official under Pharoah Tuthmos I, 1500s BC, translation in JH Breasted, 'Ancient Records of Egypt', Part Two, 326 & 328, 1906

 

 

This 'august boat' was around 63 metres long, and 20 metres wide (207 feet long, 60 feet wide), built using Early Bronze Age technology.

 

A still larger ship was built (also for transporting obelisks), during the reign of Queen Hatshepsut (about 1,480 BC, Late Bronze Age), using Early Bronze Age technology (the overhead cables in the picture below are hogging trusses):

 

 

 

It carried two obelisks (each 29.6 metres long and weighing around 323 tons), and the ship itself is estimated at 95-140 metres long and 32 metres wide. The larger of these lengths is almost exactly the length of Noah’s ark (a little over, in fact). The broad barge shape of the ship is also very similar to most modern depictions of the ark.

 

It is also worth noting that although ships of this size were rare in the Ancient Near East, there was no difficulty in constructing them with this technology when the need arose.

 

Despite the huge obelisk barges being immensely larger than all previously built ships, there is no evidence that the Egyptians were forced to spend years in experimentation, piling up nautical failures as they did so. The outsized obelisk barges appear suddenly in the historical record, apparently without having required a lengthy process of trial and error before finally reaching the desired result.

 

Proven design techniques were simply taken and scaled up as required. There is therefore no inherent unlikelihood in the construction of Noah’s ark, despite the lack of evidence for similarly scaled vessels in Mesopotamia prior to 3,000 BC.

 

PEGASUS_VOYAGER RESPONSE: First of all, I am not off-base. I did not myself say that building a ship longer than 300 feet completely out of wood and pitch was impossible, only that nautical engineers had. If they're wrong, fine. If you recall, I asked: "Did Noah overcome this limitation?" Did I say "It would be impossible to overcome this limitation"? No, I did not. I'm only going by the literal translation of the Genesis account, nothing more. Noah was told to build the boat out of gopher wood and pitch. Did the Bible say "nails"? No, it did not. Did the Bible indicate any other construction material other than wood and pitch? No, it did not. Also, every ship you mentioned that was close to equivalent in size to the ark, especially the Chinese treasure ships, required nails and/or spikes to fasten the wood. Also, the Chinese vessels had to be launced before the upper decks were completed.

 

Additionally, these ships were designed by men who were extremely learned in this field of endeavor. It is doubtful that Noah had this expertise, and also that he had the manpower to do it. The Bible makes no mention of a brigade of "hired hands" to build this thing. I conceded that eight people could build a wooden building essentially in a century, but a ship equivalent in compexity to these ships you mentioned? Don't even embarass yourself by suggesting it. And yes, I know the Bible doesn't say that he didn't have help, but neither does it say that he did have it.

 

Fortigurn

 

 

 

Joined: 12 Oct 2005

Posts: 823

 

Posted: Sat Dec 02, 2006 7:23 am Post subject:

 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Quote:

II. FEASIBILITY STUDY #2: How many animals could realistically be supported on the ark for 150 days without resupply?

 

 

* He concludes that it would have been possible to take '1, 402 animals, not counting arachnids and insects', with all animals being fed, watered, and cared for

 

* With a local flood scenario there isn't even the necessity for this number of animals

 

 

PEGASUS_VOYAGER RESPONSE: Okayyyyyyyy, when did the evangelicals "shift gears, fall-back and regroup" to the local flood scenario? I was addressing the global flood scenario. Obviously, I missed a memo or didn't read the bulletin board. Also, is it possible you finally woke up and realized that the global flood idea "won't hold water"?(sorry, couldn't resist that)

 

 

* He talks about animals such as hippopotami and elephants and includes them in his calculations when determining the average amount of food required for the animals, but such animals and these would most certainly not have been carried in the Ark, so these animals are irrelevant and his calculations have to be reconsidered

 

 

PEGASUS_VOYAGER RESPONSE: This answer is either rooted in a misunderstanding or out-and-out dishonesty. I never included those animals in my calculations for food, ony mentioned them as "FYI". I suppose by default you could say I included them since they took up space that could have been used for food, but I did not "factor in" their actual daily food intake.

And once again, I was addressing the global flood scenario, which many, many Christians still embrace, so obviously hippopotomi and elephants would have to go along, since I believe it is a safe bet they couldn't tread water for 150 days.

 

Back to top

 

 

Fortigurn

 

 

 

Joined: 12 Oct 2005

Posts: 823

 

Posted: Sat Dec 02, 2006 7:23 am Post subject:

 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Quote:

III. FEASIBILTY STUDY #3, A HYPOTHETICAL SCENARIO: If only humans were on Noah's ark, how many could it realistically carry and provide food and water for 150 days, the time the ark was alleged to be adrift?

 

 

This question is irrelevant.

 

PEGASUS_VOYAGER RESPONSE: Ultimately, it is not. Once again, you are "sound-biting" me. I indicated at the end of the study my purpose for doing it was to address a preacher's contention that all humanity could have fit on the boat. I also did this hypothetical study to reveal that the ark was not "larger than life", or some wooden "bottomless pit".

 

Back to top

 

 

Turgonian

 

 

 

Joined: 12 Aug 2006

Posts: 455

Location: the Netherlands

Posted: Sat Dec 02, 2006 12:43 pm Post subject:

 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Fortigurn, thank you very much for your replies!

 

What do you think of the 100 / 120 years?

 

Pegasus_Voyager wrote:

DISCUSSION: It is a common belief amongst Christians that Noah was given 120 years to build the ark, based on Genesis 6: 3. This is false. In Genesis 5:32, it states "And Noah was five hundred years old, and Noah begot Shem, Ham, and Japheth". Moving on to Genesis 6:7, it states that God has decided to flood the Earth. Moving on to Genesis 6:10, it repeats Genesis 5:32, but omits his age. However, if Genesis 5:32 is accurate about Noah's age, it implies that Noah was at least 500 years old when God made the decision to flood the Earth. Moving on to Genesis 6:14, God instructs Noah to build the ark. These instructions had to come after he was five hundred. Moving on to Genesis 7:11, it states that in the six hundredth year of Noah's life, the fountains of the deep opened up, and in Genesis 6:13, it states that Noah and his family entered the ark that very same day. Noah had to be at least 500 years old when he received the instructions to build the ark, and was 600 years old when he entered it. Therefore, he only had, at best, 100 years to build it. (Presuming the story were true, that is)

 

_________________

The Bible says they were "willingly ignorant". In the Greek, this means "be dumb on purpose". (Kent Hovind)

 

Back to top

 

 

Fortigurn

 

 

 

Joined: 12 Oct 2005

Posts: 823

 

Posted: Sat Dec 02, 2006 5:11 pm Post subject:

 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Turgonian wrote:

Fortigurn, thank you very much for your replies!

 

 

What do you think of the 100 / 120 years?

 

Pegasus_Voyager wrote:

DISCUSSION: It is a common belief amongst Christians that Noah was given 120 years to build the ark, based on Genesis 6: 3. This is false. In Genesis 5:32, it states "And Noah was five hundred years old, and Noah begot Shem, Ham, and Japheth". Moving on to Genesis 6:7, it states that God has decided to flood the Earth. Moving on to Genesis 6:10, it repeats Genesis 5:32, but omits his age. However, if Genesis 5:32 is accurate about Noah's age, it implies that Noah was at least 500 years old when God made the decision to flood the Earth. Moving on to Genesis 6:14, God instructs Noah to build the ark. These instructions had to come after he was five hundred. Moving on to Genesis 7:11, it states that in the six hundredth year of Noah's life, the fountains of the deep opened up, and in Genesis 6:13, it states that Noah and his family entered the ark that very same day. Noah had to be at least 500 years old when he received the instructions to build the ark, and was 600 years old when he entered it. Therefore, he only had, at best, 100 years to build it. (Presuming the story were true, that is)

 

 

 

 

I'm not that fussed about it. Either way Noah had plenty of time.

 

 

PEGASUS_VOYAGER RESPONSE: In other words, you are conceding that I could be right, but your hubris won't allow you to admit that an apostate skeptic "exploded a myth" and exposed an error that as existed for centuries , that even the most learned of theologians missed. If Kent Hovind had caught this, you would have hailed him as a "brilliant Bible scholar"

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Quote:

II. FEASIBILITY STUDY #2: How many animals could realistically be supported on the ark for 150 days without resupply?

I have to admit that I am confused by this number. The 150 days falls short of the entirety of the days upon the water, by about half, so why is it being used?

 

I see it here "Genesis 7:24 And the waters prevailed upon the earth an hundred and fifty days." which is how long the waters staid on the earth before they began to recede but they didn't actually leaved the ark until much later "8:13 And it came to pass in the six hundredth and first year, in the first month, the first day of the month, the waters were dried up from off the earth: and Noah removed the covering of the ark, and looked, and, behold, the face of the ground was dry." So the food supply would have had to had lasted that much longer overall really.

 

So, the food supply would need to last from "7:11 In the six hundredth year of Noah's life, in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month, the same day were all the fountains of the great deep broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened." until "8:13 And it came to pass in the six hundredth and first year, in the first month, the first day of the month, the waters were dried up from off the earth: and Noah removed the covering of the ark, and looked, and, behold, the face of the ground was dry." assuming there was food somehow readily available outside the ark.

 

* With a local flood scenario there isn't even the necessity for this number of animals

 

PEGASUS_VOYAGER RESPONSE: Okayyyyyyyy, when did the evangelicals "shift gears, fall-back and regroup" to the local flood scenario? I was addressing the global flood scenario. Obviously, I missed a memo or didn't read the bulletin board. Also, is it possible you finally woke up and realized that the global flood idea "won't hold water"?(sorry, couldn't resist that)

The local flood scenario has gained a lot of popularity as it solves a multitude of problems. It really took off with the book "Noah's Flood" by Ryan & Pitman (I think that's right...I did a quick check). The claim is the Black Sea flooded about 7000BCE from the Mediterranean. They had a good case until more recent research has shown that the opposite, that the Black Sea flooded first and spilled into the Mediterranean, is actually the case. Now, one of them is trying to distance themselves from the book and the other is trying to salvage what they can (this latter bit is second hand info that I got from an archaeology site from someone who supposedly attended a conference with them so take it for what it's worth).

 

The local flood theory isn't so great in the story of Noah since if Noah had one hundred years to build this mighty ark then he had ample time to simply walk away. Why build a boat and send animals into it when you can just leave the area? Any rare species of animals that only live in the flood zone you can take with you. It also doesn't ultimately destroy the "evil" people outside the flood zone negating the purpose of the flood. Also, rainbows would now apply to local as opposed to global floods and we have local floods all the time. What seems like a nice solution is really more of a problem than a global flood. At least in the Epic of Gilgamesh, the flood came and went quickly, and so converting his house into a makeshift ark makes much more sense.

 

mwc

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Quote:

II. FEASIBILITY STUDY #2: How many animals could realistically be supported on the ark for 150 days without resupply?

I have to admit that I am confused by this number. The 150 days falls short of the entirety of the days upon the water, by about half, so why is it being used?

 

I see it here "Genesis 7:24 And the waters prevailed upon the earth an hundred and fifty days." which is how long the waters staid on the earth before they began to recede but they didn't actually leaved the ark until much later "8:13 And it came to pass in the six hundredth and first year, in the first month, the first day of the month, the waters were dried up from off the earth: and Noah removed the covering of the ark, and looked, and, behold, the face of the ground was dry." So the food supply would have had to had lasted that much longer overall really.

 

So, the food supply would need to last from "7:11 In the six hundredth year of Noah's life, in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month, the same day were all the fountains of the great deep broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened." until "8:13 And it came to pass in the six hundredth and first year, in the first month, the first day of the month, the waters were dried up from off the earth: and Noah removed the covering of the ark, and looked, and, behold, the face of the ground was dry." assuming there was food somehow readily available outside the ark.

 

* With a local flood scenario there isn't even the necessity for this number of animals

 

PEGASUS_VOYAGER RESPONSE: Okayyyyyyyy, when did the evangelicals "shift gears, fall-back and regroup" to the local flood scenario? I was addressing the global flood scenario. Obviously, I missed a memo or didn't read the bulletin board. Also, is it possible you finally woke up and realized that the global flood idea "won't hold water"?(sorry, couldn't resist that)

The local flood scenario has gained a lot of popularity as it solves a multitude of problems. It really took off with the book "Noah's Flood" by Ryan & Pitman (I think that's right...I did a quick check). The claim is the Black Sea flooded about 7000BCE from the Mediterranean. They had a good case until more recent research has shown that the opposite, that the Black Sea flooded first and spilled into the Mediterranean, is actually the case. Now, one of them is trying to distance themselves from the book and the other is trying to salvage what they can (this latter bit is second hand info that I got from an archaeology site from someone who supposedly attended a conference with them so take it for what it's worth).

 

The local flood theory isn't so great in the story of Noah since if Noah had one hundred years to build this mighty ark then he had ample time to simply walk away. Why build a boat and send animals into it when you can just leave the area? Any rare species of animals that only live in the flood zone you can take with you. It also doesn't ultimately destroy the "evil" people outside the flood zone negating the purpose of the flood. Also, rainbows would now apply to local as opposed to global floods and we have local floods all the time. What seems like a nice solution is really more of a problem than a global flood. At least in the Epic of Gilgamesh, the flood came and went quickly, and so converting his house into a makeshift ark makes much more sense.

 

mwc

 

Hi, mwc, good point about the actual time on the ark. I caught that too, but I didn't run with it because I want to cut the Biblical literalists all the slack I possibly can. I agree, though, it makes, no sense why 150 days is the magic number. I don't buy into the local flood idea for the same reasons you presented. Also, why have every kind of animal species in the thing for a local flood? It doesn't fly but I know what's happening here. Many evangelicals now inwardly realize that a global flood just wasn't plausible and is intellectual suicide, so this is a "fair medium" for keeping the author of Genesis from looking like a total liar. As far as the time on the ark, I figured I was already desecrating a sacred cow over the hundred years versus the 120. I didn't want to overload their circuits with two epiphanies in one day! :HaHa:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Local flood theory fails utterly to address the reason for the flood in the first place. Unless everybody in the world at the time came to the area of the flood to die.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi, mwc, good point about the actual time on the ark. I caught that too, but I didn't run with it because I want to cut the Biblical literalists all the slack I possibly can. I agree, though, it makes, no sense why 150 days is the magic number. I don't buy into the local flood idea for the same reasons you presented. Also, why have every kind of animal species in the thing for a local flood? It doesn't fly but I know what's happening here. Many evangelicals now inwardly realize that a global flood just wasn't plausible and is intellectual suicide, so this is a "fair medium" for keeping the author of Genesis from looking like a total liar. As far as the time on the ark, I figured I was already desecrating a sacred cow over the hundred years versus the 120. I didn't want to overload their circuits with two epiphanies in one day! :HaHa:

Fair enough. Spend enough time debating and you'll stop trying to cut them any slack (or caring what they say at all for that matter...it's the whole "give them an inch" thing). Well, I guess I'm generalizing because I'm talking mainly about the fundiegelical types when I say all this. They make themselves known. :)

 

mwc

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Local flood theory fails utterly to address the reason for the flood in the first place. Unless everybody in the world at the time came to the area of the flood to die.

 

 

I believe it's a matter of perspective. The "known" world at this point in time was very small, and communications between regions took months. If acient Isreal flooded, then it's residents would rightly assume that the world had flooded. Just as the ancient saxons would have assumed the same thing if their land had been flooded. That's one of the big issues I have with these "the world was ....." stories, at the time you're talking about the world was flat and was pretty much limited to the distance you could ride in a days time. From the perspective of a resident of the time.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Fortigurn is still busy in the same thread criticizing the new posts. Just thought I'd let you know... Have to go to sleep now. ;) Take care!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I believe that cross-board discussions are frowned upon (I believe a mod will correct me on this) but since it's already in the works there isn't much we can do at this point but roll with it.

 

I should also point out that the other guy failed completely to realise that I was making a case for a local flood, not a global flood. That's what happens when you don't read posts properly.

Actually, this was understood, but you're the one that took a posting a changed the parameters of the debate. The OP that started all this was about a global flood. It's not my fault you felt this alteration should be respected when you failed to respect the OP. The bible says it's a global flood. You say it's a local flood. I say there's no flood. Now it's just a matter of scale, isn't it?

 

It's disappointing when people don't read posts. I'll deal with this briefly:

Poison that well. ;)

 

* The 15th century Chinese baochuan and the 3rd century BC polyremes were presented simply to prove that the dimensions of the ark were feasible (they were not presented as proximate evidence that the Mesopotamians built such vessels)

So, they are meaningless? You are trying to say that boats this large are possible and therefore, perhaps, Noah's boat was possible.

 

We build cruise ships that dwarf the Titanic by comparison. So what? Less than 100 years has passed between the Titanic and now but technology has allowed us to surpass it in many ways (size, safety, etc.). The comparison is still unfair.

 

Now, you mention ships that are 2000 years separated, at best, from the time of Noah and try to say that is a fair comparison? You then mention the Chinese ships which are another 1500 years removed as another example? 3500 years simply doesn't cut it. Your comparisons prove nothing in the way of feasibility unless Noah build a c1500 AD Chinese baochuan style ship to sail around in. However, an ark is normally accepted as a box like object, so Noah was probably in a barge (not a polyreme either).

 

However, it doesn't matter. None of that matters. All the evidence from the time period (c2300BCE) shows no boats like the ones you describe. Unless Noah was 2000 years ahead of everyone in naval engineering then show all the example ships you like but he would have built ships of his own day like it or not.

 

* I presented considerable evidence that chronologically proximate Egyptian and Mesopotamian ship building techniques were capable of building vessels of this size (I referred specifically to the Egyptian obelisk barges, built in the Middle Bronze Age with techniques which had not changed since the Early Bronze Age)

Yes, you did show this. It was a nice picture too. It was also too late as I recall. Also a ship not built for the type of flood we were discussing and until we're on the same page on that this one will have to put on the sideline.

 

* The idea of the Ark having to resist 'the roughest oceans ever seen' is bizarre - the Bible refers to 40 days of rain, and the Ark floating on the Mesopotamian flood basin, nothing at all about 'the roughest oceans ever seen', or indeed any 'rough waters'

The bible mentions 40 days of rain, the ground waters bursting forth, it makes no mention of the Mesopotamian flood basin but it does mention snuffing out the all life (human and animal) on the face of the earth. It mentions the waters covering the earth for about one year before the boat comes to rest at the top of a mountain (hard to do in a flood basin). The whole earth being covered by water would produce the roughest waters ever seen.

 

Even if it was a local flood, if it rained non-stop for 40 days in a local area this would produce a horrific scene in that area. It would be rough. Your cited boats would sink. All of them. They would be swept away and dashed into something, or something would smash into them causing major damage. That's what happens when a flood comes along in a flood basin. You aren't "gently" lifted into the air as the water comes along. Your scenario causes major issues with the initial rush of debris that will destroy your ship.

 

But I imagine that Noah was aware of this and build the ship somewhere off in the plain. The initial rush came along and then as the banks over-flowed the eased outward without much current at all. Off in the distance, Noah spotted this and ran up the ramp. God shut them in (as per the story) and the over-flowed waters lifted them upwards. They were lifted up until they were above the local hills (not mountains since it's the same word). They sat suspended for roughly a year until they came to rest against another hill. They then exited the boat. Nice and simple. It still fails to address all the issues in the bible. So have your "reasonable" explanation or have your biblical tale but you can't have both (and there's no evidence, that I'm aware of, for a massive flood in the flood plain as described so you can't have that either).

 

mwc

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I believe that cross-board discussions are frowned upon (I believe a mod will correct me on this) but since it's already in the works there isn't much we can do at this point but roll with it.

 

I should also point out that the other guy failed completely to realise that I was making a case for a local flood, not a global flood. That's what happens when you don't read posts properly.

Actually, this was understood, but you're the one that took a posting a changed the parameters of the debate. The OP that started all this was about a global flood. It's not my fault you felt this alteration should be respected when you failed to respect the OP. The bible says it's a global flood. You say it's a local flood. I say there's no flood. Now it's just a matter of scale, isn't it?

 

It's disappointing when people don't read posts. I'll deal with this briefly:

Poison that well. ;)

 

* The 15th century Chinese baochuan and the 3rd century BC polyremes were presented simply to prove that the dimensions of the ark were feasible (they were not presented as proximate evidence that the Mesopotamians built such vessels)

So, they are meaningless? You are trying to say that boats this large are possible and therefore, perhaps, Noah's boat was possible.

 

We build cruise ships that dwarf the Titanic by comparison. So what? Less than 100 years has passed between the Titanic and now but technology has allowed us to surpass it in many ways (size, safety, etc.). The comparison is still unfair.

 

Now, you mention ships that are 2000 years separated, at best, from the time of Noah and try to say that is a fair comparison? You then mention the Chinese ships which are another 1500 years removed as another example? 3500 years simply doesn't cut it. Your comparisons prove nothing in the way of feasibility unless Noah build a c1500 AD Chinese baochuan style ship to sail around in. However, an ark is normally accepted as a box like object, so Noah was probably in a barge (not a polyreme either).

 

However, it doesn't matter. None of that matters. All the evidence from the time period (c2300BCE) shows no boats like the ones you describe. Unless Noah was 2000 years ahead of everyone in naval engineering then show all the example ships you like but he would have built ships of his own day like it or not.

 

* I presented considerable evidence that chronologically proximate Egyptian and Mesopotamian ship building techniques were capable of building vessels of this size (I referred specifically to the Egyptian obelisk barges, built in the Middle Bronze Age with techniques which had not changed since the Early Bronze Age)

Yes, you did show this. It was a nice picture too. It was also too late as I recall. Also a ship not built for the type of flood we were discussing and until we're on the same page on that this one will have to put on the sideline.

 

* The idea of the Ark having to resist 'the roughest oceans ever seen' is bizarre - the Bible refers to 40 days of rain, and the Ark floating on the Mesopotamian flood basin, nothing at all about 'the roughest oceans ever seen', or indeed any 'rough waters'

The bible mentions 40 days of rain, the ground waters bursting forth, it makes no mention of the Mesopotamian flood basin but it does mention snuffing out the all life (human and animal) on the face of the earth. It mentions the waters covering the earth for about one year before the boat comes to rest at the top of a mountain (hard to do in a flood basin). The whole earth being covered by water would produce the roughest waters ever seen.

 

Even if it was a local flood, if it rained non-stop for 40 days in a local area this would produce a horrific scene in that area. It would be rough. Your cited boats would sink. All of them. They would be swept away and dashed into something, or something would smash into them causing major damage. That's what happens when a flood comes along in a flood basin. You aren't "gently" lifted into the air as the water comes along. Your scenario causes major issues with the initial rush of debris that will destroy your ship.

 

But I imagine that Noah was aware of this and build the ship somewhere off in the plain. The initial rush came along and then as the banks over-flowed the eased outward without much current at all. Off in the distance, Noah spotted this and ran up the ramp. God shut them in (as per the story) and the over-flowed waters lifted them upwards. They were lifted up until they were above the local hills (not mountains since it's the same word). They sat suspended for roughly a year until they came to rest against another hill. They then exited the boat. Nice and simple. It still fails to address all the issues in the bible. So have your "reasonable" explanation or have your biblical tale but you can't have both (and there's no evidence, that I'm aware of, for a massive flood in the flood plain as described so you can't have that either).

 

mwc

 

 

HOLY SHIP HISTORY LESSON, BATMAN!! Geeeeeeeeeez, you're good, mwc! Hey, I thought of a good argument to counter this "Other civilizations had big boats, why not Noah?" stuff. If God instructed Noah to build a spacecraft to house all the animals, would the fact that space travel is feasible in the 21st century make space travel feasible in Noah's century?

 

Also, did you see all the "red herring" arguments this fortigurn guy was using? Calling me "panicky" because I responded so quickly to his critique. and "angry". Talk about hypocritical! Who's being "panicky" here realistically? Within a matter of hours after I posted my feasibility study, turgonian goes running willy-nilly to "god and science" screaming "DANGER WILL ROBINSON", and within a 24 hour period, his friend fortigurn spits out practically a mini-thesis to attack my study. And they call me "panicky"???Please! Also, did you notice how "canned" and "scripted" turgonian's conversation with fortigurn apeared to be?Butttttttt, hey, far be it from me to jump to conclusions!

 

Also, in the immortal words of "Emily Latella"(Gilda Radner), "What's all this talk about anger manglement?? Pretty soon they'll want to shred depression!" Even if I was angry, which Im not, why is it treated as something aberrant or deviant if you are, especially in the Christian community. Anger is a perfectly healthy emotion, as long as it's controlled.If I am angry, I'm in good company: "Jesus got angry, King David got angry, all God's chillun' got angry"

 

Additionally, why is this guy fortigurn jumping through hoops over this? Was my study that big of a deal to these guys? Actually, I'm kind of flattered!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We know that ships this large were built. From a tomb inscription in Late Bronze Age Thebes (Egypt):

 

'I inspected the erection of two obelisks ////// built the august boat of 120 cubits in its length, 40 cubits in its width, in order to transport these obelisks. (They) came in peace, safety and prosperity, and landed at Karnak ////// of the city.'

 

Tomb inscription of Aneni, official under Pharoah Tuthmos I, 1500s BC, translation in JH Breasted, 'Ancient Records of Egypt', Part Two, 326 & 328, 1906

 

This 'august boat' was around 63 metres long, and 20 metres wide (207 feet long, 60 feet wide), built using Early Bronze Age technology.

 

A still larger ship was built (also for transporting obelisks), during the reign of Queen Hatshepsut (about 1,480 BC, Late Bronze Age), using Early Bronze Age technology (the overhead cables in the picture below are hogging trusses):

 

It carried two obelisks (each 29.6 metres long and weighing around 323 tons), and the ship itself is estimated at 95-140 metres long and 32 metres wide. The larger of these lengths is almost exactly the length of Noah’s ark (a little over, in fact). The broad barge shape of the ship is also very similar to most modern depictions of the ark.

 

It is also worth noting that although ships of this size were rare in the Ancient Near East, there was no difficulty in constructing them with this technology when the need arose.

 

Despite the huge obelisk barges being immensely larger than all previously built ships, there is no evidence that the Egyptians were forced to spend years in experimentation, piling up nautical failures as they did so. The outsized obelisk barges appear suddenly in the historical record, apparently without having required a lengthy process of trial and error before finally reaching the desired result.

 

Proven design techniques were simply taken and scaled up as required. There is therefore no inherent unlikelihood in the construction of Noah’s ark, despite the lack of evidence for similarly scaled vessels in Mesopotamia prior to 3,000 BC.

I did a quick search for this "august boat" and came up empty handed. I'll try again later when I have a bit more time.

 

However, both of these Egyptian boats are from roughly 1000 years too late (You should be considering something more like this: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/egypt/explore/boat.html which is far closer to the time period we're discussing and keeping in mind apples to apples it is also Egyptian like your example). From the image you posted it appears the cargo is placed upon the deck as opposed to internally if we take the image literally. They don't appear to be designed for anything other than river work.

 

So beyond being able to carry a very heavy capacity on the deck what are they good for in a flood? How GOOD were these ships? Your image cannot answer this nor can your argument. Did they all work as designed 100% of the time or did 99% of them sink? Is that why the Aneni was so proud? He actually succeeded where others had failed? His is the only mention of the "august boat" I could find so your claim that "there was no difficulty in constructing them with this technology when the need arose" is unfounded. That's okay if that's your assertion. Perhaps it's even true but one difficult to locate inscription seems like hardly enough evidence on which to base such a claim (and it seems everyone simply copies this same bit over and over unfortunately...so my search for something more concrete continues). They must have gotten better as time went on since we know obelisks made it far outside of Egypt. I have no qualms with that.

 

However, we are talking about Noah and not the Egyptians and so this path only takes us so far. I concede that the Egyptians may have built a really fantastic boat around 1500 BCE but that has no bearing on Noah of the ~23rd century BCE.

 

As for this statement "Proven design techniques were simply taken and scaled up as required." This rarely works in the real world. I'm not an engineer but I've had enough of them talk over my head to know that materials, especially wood, can't just be "scaled up" otherwise we'd have wooden sky scrapers. We don't. Wood fails structurally at a given point. It's a fact. Make it thicker and you not only add weight but you lose your internal cargo space. There's a point of diminishing returns. I'm sorry I'm not the one to discuss the finer details of this with as it's way out of my area of knowledge. However, the broad stroke, you can't simply take something that works on the small scale and make it bigger "as required," is a factual statement. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't (with something as complex as a ship with all it's various stresses I'd imagine it fails more often than not...I'd ask a nautical engineer if I knew one).

 

mwc

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I believe it's a matter of perspective. The "known" world at this point in time was very small, and communications between regions took months. If acient Isreal flooded, then it's residents would rightly assume that the world had flooded. Just as the ancient saxons would have assumed the same thing if their land had been flooded. That's one of the big issues I have with these "the world was ....." stories, at the time you're talking about the world was flat and was pretty much limited to the distance you could ride in a days time. From the perspective of a resident of the time.
Here's why I say it local flood theory fails to address the story. Of course the makers of those stories, of which there were many form unrelated sources, operated in a microcosm, and in all likelihood, understood that the areas of their local floods, which some of these stories were based upon, were just that, local.

 

I can assume reasonably that if a memorable flood took place, the invariable folktale shift occured, whereby the story grows in magnitude, till the event involved the entire world. If no such flood happened, then the story probably just started out that way. Here's the problem with the local flood model for the Noah's Ark story. This is more than just a folk tale. This is a moral story. God wants to punish the entire world, and apparently all the animals and plants, for their evil acts. God beholds in all the world, which, microcosmically metaphorical or not, most likely meant all the world, none righteous, save one man, and by extension, his wife, his sons and their wives.

 

Noah is told to build an ark to save himself and his kin. Certainly, if this were to be treated as literal, the idea of the ark and the punishment by drowning makes no sense. The ark is unnecessary, on a number of levels, as discussed by others in this thread, and the writers would likely have considered naming the areas around which the flood occured.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

All true.

 

Local floods, especially in the Mesopotamian flood basin just don't work for old Noah. Sure, there's evidence for floods but at different time periods (a very key point that's usually just ignored) and it totally just blows off the bible except in the "big picture" telling of the tale.

 

Fortunately, it appears we're finished with all this nonsense. Being cross-board it's hard to say who won...if anyone. :Wendywhatever:

 

mwc

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The entire purpose of the Flood story is to tell a story. That's all. To even treat it like a real event is ludicrous.

 

I mean....Biblegod looks at all the world, and hates all the people on it except for a small handful of folks he likes.

 

What is their great reward for being liked by Biblegod according to this story? Their survival? Nooooot exactly.

 

Their "reward" is getting to work their fucking asses off for 100 years building a giant fucking boat! It's the same work ethic we see in the corporate world. Congratulations! You met all your tasks and deadlines! Good for you! That means you can start helping out your slacker co-workers on their projects too! Yay! :Hmm:

 

Of course, if something truly god-like were to occur, say the temporary relocation of Noah's family and all the animals to another plane of existence while the world completely went to shit....I guess you really wouldn't have too much of a fireside tale later.

 

So the whole point of the story, really is to have a story to tell.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, if you're going to compare it to the corporate world then you forget that really out of control after party they throw. It goes good until the boss gets drunk and naked. Then "something" happens with him and the young cow-orker and all sorts of curses get thrown around. It's all downhill from there. It's a real shame.

 

mwc

Link to comment
Share on other sites

LOL good call! :3:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Now, you mention ships that are 2000 years separated, at best, from the time of Noah and try to say that is a fair comparison? You then mention the Chinese ships which are another 1500 years removed as another example? 3500 years simply doesn't cut it. Your comparisons prove nothing in the way of feasibility unless Noah build a c1500 AD Chinese baochuan style ship to sail around in. However, an ark is normally accepted as a box like object, so Noah was probably in a barge (not a polyreme either).

 

I think that it is also worth mentioning that the Chinese boats he mentions were not war ships or even open ocean vessels. The internal stress on those boats were so high that any bad weather or high waves would rip the boats apart, so they were mostly only used for transporting cargo along large rivers and coastal waters.

 

Even with 3500+ years of extra nautical engineering these boats were not open ocean vessels

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Guidelines.