February 23, 2012 · Posted in Everything Else  

Continuing previous lines of thought:

9 The name of the fourth is Penemue*: he discovered to the children of men bitterness and sweetness;
10 And pointed out to them every secret of their wisdom.
11 He taught men to understand writing, and the use of ink and paper.
12 Therefore numerous have been those who have gone astray from every period of the world, even to this day.
13 For men were not born for this, thus with pen and with ink to confirm their faith;
14 Since they were not created, except that, like the angels, they might remain righteous and pure.
15 Nor would death, which destroys everything, have effected them;
16 But by this their knowledge they perish, and by this also its power consumes them.

1 Enoch** 68: 9-16 (context: http://www.johnpratt.com/items/docs/enoch.html#68 )

There are plenty of references that conflate Enoch’s twenty-one deans of the University of the Fallen to the seven fish-men sages of Akkadian/Sumerian Apkallu/Abgal traditions, possibly with good reason. Stories mutate and evolve with the cultures that host them. As the settlements of humanity split and disperse, and the languages in which they are recorded drift apart, the stories that sustain those cultures also diverge, allowing for the application of an evolutionary model. Attempts to reverse-engineer the original stories is exactly as useful (and accurate, which is to say not very) as the attempt to reconstruct a proto-IndoEuropean language from modern spoken languages on Indo-European-derived cultures. But the constructs, modern though they must be, still have some utility despite the taint of modern thinking.

Antediluvian dates are plagued with the same problem that exists with any of the proto-Semitic cultures, namely the confusion between months and years as measures that makes Adam and Methusaleh’s lifespans have numbers in the 900s instead of 70s and list Noah as 400 when he started construction on his ark instead of, say, in his 30s.

Correcting for that, Sumer’s Adapa of the sages could be at least vaguely contemporaneous with the somewhat better documented Imhotep of the Egyptians, give or take a few hundred years.

* “Penemue” is rumored to mean “the inside”, but I find nothing but assertions, no references to any languages in which this is the case. In the words of Wikipedia, [citation needed].

** translated from Ethiopic by Richard Laurence, London, 1883 (asserted by John P. Pratt, wealth of commentary on science, chronology and various flavors of divine apologetics, http://www.johnpratt.com/ )

February 4, 2012 · Posted in Everything Else