This blog post was written by students in Carolyn Ross’s Writing and Rhetoric course, “Writing Nature: Discourses in Ecology, Culture, and Technology,” at Stanford University in California, USA, in response to their reading of two creations stories: Genesis 1-3 from the biblical Old Testament and a Pomo (California) Indian creation story, “Marumda and Kuksu Make the World.” In addition, it considers a third creation story of the students’ choosing to expand and enrich our discussion of these texts. Comments posted are from students in Mark Michael’s Rhetoric 102 course at The American University in Cairo, Egypt, and by other students in the Stanford class. The American University, Cairo, students have posted their own blogs, addressing the Judeo-Christian creation story, the Pomo Indian creation story, and other creation stories of their own choosing. For more on this exchange, visit this introductory post.
In the three creation stories, Genesis: 1-3, Marumda and Kuksu Make the World, and The Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, a common trend is established in which the world is created by a deity or deities through a series of commands. It appears that once the commands have been given, the actions immediately or eventually occur without any work from the deity other than the proclamation. Thus it is evident that the power of the deity or deities is viewed as far superior than even nature itself.
Genesis is the story by which the Judeo-Christian God created the earth. God began with the heavens and earth, both of which were devoid of any human life. He then bestowed light upon the earth and called the presence of light Day and the absence, night. Through a seven day process, choosing to rest from his work on the seventh day, God finished creating the earth with its plethora of animals, vast realm of nature, and man. God observed that man needed a companion and therefore, subsequent to creating man, God created woman from Adam’s rib and placed both in the Garden of Eden. Additionally, within the Garden of Eden he placed the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, from which he told Adam and Eve that they could not eat. However, a serpent approached Eve and tempted her to consume from the tree of knowledge, convincing her that this will not do her harm. Thus Eve ate from the tree, persuaded Adam to do so as well, and both were eventually embarrassed to be naked and immediately ran to cover themselves. God witnessed their embarrassment, knew what they had done, continued to inquire of what tempted them, and finally evicted them from the Garden of Eden with several punishments.
The creation story, “Marumda and Kuksu Make the World” begins with Marumda, an old man. Marumda uses four of his pulled out hairs to find his brother. They floated towards the south, leaving fire behind. They led him to a cloud-house where he slept and smoked four times. After this, he proceeded to his elder brother’s house, Kuksu, entering from the east side. After quitting smoking, Marumda scraped his armpit wax off and gave it to Kuksu, who put it between his toes. Kuksu then scraped his own armpits and created a ball of wax, which he stuck between Marumda’s toes. They both blew on the armpit wax balls, and walked around them four times each, and then mixed the two balls together. Then, they held the ball in different directions, exclaiming the plan to create people, food and the earth. With this, Marumda put the armpit wax in a sack, and left. He sang all the way home. Upon arriving home, he tied a string to the ball and strung it through his ear-hole. He then fell asleep, with the ear-hole tugging away. After eight days, Marumda woke up, untied the string from his ear-hole, and threw the newly formed earth out into space.
Five thousand years ago, the Flying Spaghetti Monster created the Universe. No one except Himself was around to see it. Earth was created in approximately 0.062831953 seconds. Our Noodly Creator then spent the next one hundred years carefully preparing the universe to appear older than it actually is. Each photon was divinely placed and red-shifted* to make the universe appear billions of years old. Twenty-five hundred years ago, the Flying Spaghetti Monster first revealed His Noodly Appendages to us, bringing to Earth his holy Pastafarians, commonly referred to as Pirates. Unfortunately, we do not know much about this era, perhaps due to the high rate of sinking ships and amount of alcohol that the pirates drank. For centuries, Pastafarians traveled the world spreading His word, living a life of peace and merriment. Hunted nearly to extinction by a band of Ninjas, Pirates became a scarce in the world. Pirates later evolved into humans. This accounts for certain evolutionary traits. “Male nipples, for example, were used by Pirates as portable weather stations. With their nipples they were able to determine the direction of the trade winds and, depending on stiffness, how cold it was outside” (Gospel of the FSM). Goose bumps, Wisdom Teeth, Tailbones, and Appendix can likewise be explained by our Pirate ancestors. The gospel of the Flying Spagetti Monster is today’s fastest growing carbohydrate based religion. R-Amen.
In Genesis and the Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, it is one all powerful deity that creates the earth, while in Marumda and Kuksu Make the World, it is two deities that make the earth. In all cases, none of the deities are required to undergo any struggle to accomplish this task. Therefore, it is made clear that they are all superior to not only nature and the earth, but to all of mankind.
*red-shifted: “The universe appears to be expanding, much like cooked pasta, as illustrated by observed light from distant galaxies shifting towards the MarinaraSpectrum. Some scientists cite this as support for His preference of red sauce” Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster.
Corey Radis, Angelique Dakkak, Bianca Kapoor