Christian Bible And Metamorphoses Analysis

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Mythological Origins Despite the progress of science, humankind still has no definite answers about the emergence of life on Earth or what occurred thereafter. Many scientists hold the view that all living things are products of naturally occurring phenomena—abiogenesis, the big bang, and evolution. There are numerous theories that attempt to explain how life came to exist on Earth. Ancient poets and writers expressed their beliefs about the subject through two main surviving texts: the Christian Bible and the Metamorphoses by Ovid. Each gives a different but strikingly similar account as how life originated, and both document a world-wide flood that resulted soon after mankind’s arrival—punishment for impious acts. While written at different…show more content…
Todd in a correspondence to the journal Nature (Todd). Looking for insight into our origins through ancient texts might seem absurd in the eyes of people like Dr. Todd because both sources credit a divine power for the creation of existence, nature/life, and humanity. The section of the Christian Bible, or Hebrew Pentateuch, that documents the origins of life is generally dated between 850 B.C.E. and 550 B.C.E. (Thury and Devinney). The Metamorphoses, on the other hand, gives an account akin to that of the Bible, but was written many years later after the Roman poet Ovid’s exile in 8 C.E. It addresses several of the same topics, but differs from the Bible in the respect that it focuses on the transformation of forms, existence, and humans. Both texts assert divine influence over the world and offer cultural and societal critiques of ancient humankind. These texts are considered mere mythological accounts that have no empirical value in explaining the questions surrounding the emergence of human life and existence, representing only early humankind’s interpretation of unknown natural processes, but to these authors this truth was inspired by divine revelation rather than the discovery of the…show more content…
The Book of Genesis describes how humankind’s progenitors disobey a direct—virtually the only—order from their creator: to not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil (Gen. 3:11-13). As a result, God banishes the first man and woman on Earth from paradise (Gen. 3:23-4). They become susceptible to nature and are forced to cultivate their own food; another punishment is that the woman and other women will suffer pain during childbirth for the rest of time. Ovid’s account of early humanity centered on Lycaon, the first king of Arcadia who committed a sacrilegious, inhumane act by killing a young hostage, cooking the body, and offering it to Zeus (b1, 316-322). As a result, Zeus formulated a plan to rid the Earth of humanity while saving the rest of creation: a great flood. Zeus described his plan as a “surgeon’s blade” removing an infection to prevent its spread (b1, 261-262). While the Biblical god only forced humanity out of harmonious paradise for their transgressions, Zeus decides on a much more drastic punishment for humankind is needed to save the rest of creation from being

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