Behind the Ark
(Rough draft)
Week 6
Exercise 4
Evan J. Schlesinger

Millions of people read the torah and bible; both bible and torah are a string of stories that are connected by their intertwined families. These stories have to satisfy the three functions of religion, the story has to first provide an expectable explanation of death; then a story has to provide a code of living for the community of believers, and after that, create a story of origin and mythological reference. For example, the children’s fairytale Little Red Hood follows all of these rules. The story explains death by having the grandma that had been eaten, be freed by a lumberjack’s Axe, and have the jump out alive and well. The story of Little Red Riding Hood addresses the code of laws in a smaller scale version than the bible or the torah; instead, the story has a moral that trickery and evilness will only bring you too your demise. The third function of religion in Little Red Riding Hood is actually the hardest, the mythological reference in little red riding hood.
Noah and the Ark starts with the beginning of mankind, man though is very sinful and evil, god decides to cleanse the earth of its evil with a flood. God then tells Noah to build an ark to hold two example of every form of life, and too bring your wife and kids with him; god also reminds him that he will start the flood in only seven weeks. Noah build’s his ark and loads the animals on, then after 800 years, god opens the floodgates of heaven to let all hell break loose on earth. For forty days and nights it rained and the earth became a gigantic sea. After the forty days and nights of rain, god stopped the rain and made a rainbow appear to signify that there will be joy after hardships. There was no land to be seen, so Noah let loose a crow, a hawk, and a dove to find land; all three birds returned, but the dove had an olive branch in its beak, this proved that there was a living tree on solid land. Noah and all of his passengers enter the new world to repopulate and prosper.
The god described in the Old Testament was very strict compared to the god of the New Testament. The god of the Old Testament in the story of Noah and the Ark was infuriated with mankind; mankind itself was mostly a bunch of evil, nasty, lowlifes. So god planned to wipe all the evil of mankind off the face of the earth with a massive flood; god then went down to earth and told Noah to build a gigantic boat to carry two examples of every form of life and too bring his whole family with him, this ensured that animals and good humans would get another chance to restart. After the flood, the ground dried, the humans and animals left the Ark and began to restart anew. God saw that evil and goodness are both needed in humans and vowed never to flood the earth ever again. The flood in the story is a punishment for the evil; Noah though was rewarded with many children and lived to be past 940 years old. God rewards those who obey and worship him, and punish the evil and wicked.
The Torah says that we humans came from Adam and Eve, but that’s partially true. We all are the sons and daughters of Noah’s family. When the flood destroyed the earth, it didn’t only cleanse the earth of the evilness from mankind, it killed all animals and humans besides from those on the Ark. That means that we are truly brothers and sisters regarding to the tale of Noah’s Ark. The families that had already existed at the time were wiped out forever, this means that we came from Noah son’s family and the daughter’s family. This explains our origin from Noah and the Ark. This might seem a little farfetched right now, but at the time this was truer than Evolution.
In conclusion, Noah’s ark is a tale that covers all three of the functions of religion; the story tells about a code of living, a story of origin, and it explains death. Unlike the children’s story of Little Red Riding Hood, besides the time gap between stories, Noah’s Ark is actually one part of the entire story of the Genesis. All the stories from the bible or torah are only small parts of the entire story, the bible and torah are really like a vivid detailed odyssey lasting over many generations. Aside from the story attributes of the torah and bible, both address the three functions of religion, each individual story has a certain moral or lesson that is taught to the characters through life experiences. For example, man learned to be respectful of god when he was punished by the great flood; then man learned from his mistakes and moved on to the next lesson. That is what we do though on a regular basis, we learn from our mistakes and move on. Then from those lessons we can draw answers to find truth.