Placeholder Image

字幕列表 影片播放

  • Hi, I'm Mike Rugnetta, this is Crash Course Mythology,

  • and we've spent a lot of this series on how various gods created the earth,

  • but now it's time to look at one way they destroy it.

  • Today's topic..

  • is floods.

  • Oh!

  • Thoth put his swimtrunks on!

  • Thoth put his swimtrunks on! All right, we're all ready, let's get started!

  • (water noise)

  • (Mike's wearing defective water wings)

  • *Egyption myth-trivia*

  • *Greek myth-trivia*

  • *Indian myth-trivia*

  • *Norse myth-trivia*

  • You're probably familiar with the story of the flood from the Bible,

  • featuring Noah and the Ark, but

  • it turns out that alot of cultures have flood myths.

  • One explanation for this is the belief that myths are rooted in history.

  • --remember Euhemerism?

  • Plus many of the earliest, complex societies grew around rivers--

  • --which would flood. Most of the time, that flooding was neither predictable,

  • nor helpful; except for the Nile river, whose floods were regular,

  • provided water for irrigation, and-

  • -were thought to be of divine significance.

  • Just ask Sobek, crocodile-headed god of the Nile's floods.

  • Despite his frightening teeth, he also has a reputation for healing or protection in some stories.

  • -Anyway, flood myths may also reflect a common theme in some of the myths we've examined:

  • The idea that creation's source..

  • ..is PRIMORDIAL WATERS.

  • if water can bring life, it stands to reason,

  • it can also bring...

  • it can also bring... DEATH.

  • You can see the symbolism in various purification rituals like baptisms,

  • or

  • prenuptial cleansings.

  • They serve as tiny reenactments of floods

  • -where an old life is destroyed and a new life begins.

  • A tiny made-to-order single-serving flood:

  • adorable..

  • and destructive

  • Let's begin in ancient Mesopotamia with one of our favorite mythical sources:

  • The Epic of Gilgamesh

  • Thought bubble?

  • What you got?

  • At the beginning of this particular story

  • the hero, Utnapishtim, is talking to Gilgamesh

  • about living in the city of Shurupakk on the banks of the Euphrates.

  • He explains that a group of Gods,

  • Anu,

  • Anu, Enlil,

  • Anu, Enlil, Ninurta,

  • Anu, Enlil, Ninurta, Ennugi,

  • Anu, Enlil, Ninurta, Ennugi, and Ea

  • Anu, Enlil, Ninurta, Ennugi, and Ea put their divine heads together..

  • ..and decided to flood the place.

  • luckily for Utnapishtim, Ea has second thoughts,

  • and sneaks over to spill the beans.

  • Ea secretly tells Utnapishtim what's going down,

  • and orders him to leave his home,

  • all his possessions,

  • and to build a boat,

  • which will carry the seed of all living things.

  • Utnapishtim's boat is...

  • Utnapishtim's boat is... MASSIVE

  • --an acre in circumference, with six enormous decks.

  • Utnapishtim and his family loaded up with everything there was:

  • all the silver, gold, and seeds of every living thing;

  • his kith, and his kin and the wild beasts, and all kinds of craftsmen--

  • --and also shuffleboard!

  • --and also shuffleboard and a killer buffet!

  • --and also shuffleboard and a killer buffet! (I assume)

  • When the hour of destruction arrives, the gods send down a terrifying storm.

  • So terrifying that even the gods were afraid of the flood-weapon.

  • and when they see what they've done to their creation,

  • the Gods,

  • the Gods, humbled,

  • the Gods, humbled, sat there...

  • the Gods, humbled, sat there... weeping.

  • (Whoops!)

  • The storm rages for seven days before eventually blowing itself out.

  • Utnapishtim looks out of a porthole and sees that all of mankind has been destroyed

  • --and he weeps.

  • He's just become the world's first cruise ship captain..

  • under VERY unfortunate circumstances.

  • His boat comes aground on mount Nimush,

  • and Utnapishtim sends out birds to search for dry land.

  • First,

  • First, a dove comes back,

  • First, a dove comes back, because there was no place to perch,

  • then,

  • then, the swallow returns,

  • finally,

  • finally, he sends out a raven,

  • and when it doesn't return,

  • and when it doesn't return, he knows dry land is out there...

  • somewhere.

  • He makes a sacrifice to the gods,

  • and am-scrays off that oat-bay, lickety-split.

  • Thank you, thought bubble!

  • So,

  • So, the flood destroys mankind,

  • So, the flood destroys mankind, but..

  • ..it doesn't end there.

  • ..it doesn't end there. Enlil, the brains behind the decision to destroy humanity,

  • sees that Utnapishtim and his family,

  • sees that Utnapishtim and his family, and also probably the craftsmen,

  • -have survived! And he can't believe his eyes!

  • What sort of life survived?

  • What sort of life survived? No man should have lived through the destruction.

  • Ea, who had told Utnapishtim to build the giant boat, chimes in:

  • "You are the sage of the gods, warrior,"

  • "so how,"

  • "so how, oh how"

  • "so how, oh how could you fail to consult and impose the flood?"

  • "Punish the sinner for his sin,"

  • "Punish the sinner for his sin, punish the criminal for his crime, but-"

  • "-ease off, let work not cease, be patient..."

  • Ea tries to instill some moderation in Enlil,

  • and suggests that maybe, in the future, he could just send like

  • a lion,

  • a lion, or a wolf

  • a lion, or a wolf or a plague..

  • you know, something mild...

  • you know, something mild... like a plague.

  • Apparently this satisfies Enlil, because he shrugs,

  • pops on down to Utnapishtim's boat and

  • touches him on the forehead to make him

  • touches him on the forehead to make him immortal.

  • I guess it all works out in the end for Utnapishtim.

  • You know they say: All's Well that Ends Well

  • -or doesn't end at all, ever, because it's immortal.

  • So, this all probably sounds familiar to those of you who know the flood story from the Bible.

  • I don't remember Noah having room for every piece of gold and silver alongside all those animals, but

  • both stories have angry divinities who order

  • a chosen person person to build a big boat, and fill it with wildlife.

  • Then, birds are sent to find land after the boat gets stuck on a mountain.

  • There are a number of important differences though, too.

  • First of all, the reason the Babylonian gods decided to destroy humanity is..

  • well, its unclear.

  • well, its unclear. in one version it's because

  • humans are making too much noise which,

  • humans are making too much noise which, okay,

  • humans are making too much noise which, okay, fair,

  • humans are making too much noise which, okay, fair, Keep it down you kids!

  • Don't make me send a..

  • Don't make me send a.. deluge..

  • Don't make me send a.. deluge.. down there

  • Don't make me send a.. deluge.. down there and literally destroy you.

  • In the Old Testament the flood is punishment for mankind's sinfulness.

  • As the book tells it,

  • "God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the Earth,"

  • "and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart

  • "and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually."

  • "And it repented the Lord that he had made man on the Earth,

  • "And it repented the Lord that he had made man on the Earth, and it grieved him at his heart."

  • "And the Lord said,"

  • "I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the Earth;"

  • both man,

  • both man, and beast,

  • both man, and beast, and creeping things,

  • and the fowls of the air,

  • for it repenteth me that I have made them.

  • Which,

  • Which, I mean, man!

  • Which, I mean, man! I don't LOVE the creeping things, but...

  • I don't want them DESTROYED,

  • I don't want them DESTROYED, What about Anansi?

  • Yahweh commands Noah to build a boat, like Ea did with Utnapishtim, but

  • Yahwah gives Noah even more detailed instructions.

  • He's also less efficient when it comes to the rainstorm.

  • It takes Yahweh 40 days to do what the Babylonian gods did in seven!

  • Then again, those Babylonians were working as a team.

  • Like the Sumerian myth, Noah celebrates his survival with a sacrifice.