Saw this on Twitter yesterday and wanted to comment on it, but it was gonna take more than 140 characters. I tried whittling this down but no matter how i put it in so few words, it sounded to me like i was favoring incest. I’m not. Quite the opposite.
For example here’s an attempt at saying this in under 140 characters, keeping in mind i was also trying to allow space to either RT the original tweet (which i’ve now lost cuz TweetDeck hates me) or include a link to the image above in the same tweet:
“It’s not that incest is morally wrong; it does not work scientifically.”
I’m just gonna need more space than that. Let’s review this image briefly so we’re all on the same page. The creation story of ancient Abrahamic texts says that a god made two people and from them the world was populated by human beings. Then, many generations later, god got upset with mankind and drowned practically every single human in a flood, except for Noah and his wife and their children. Oh, and a pair of every animal kept inside one big ark. Thousands of species paired up. One boat. After the flood receded, these pairs of creatures were sent forth into the world to repopulate the planet. So. Twice. Incestuous relationships populated mankind twice.
The Old Testament is founded on the idea that incest is plausible, and preferable. That its a viable way to perpetuate a species. God creates one pair of human beings. It doesn’t say in Genesis that he started mass producing them. He made Adam from dirt. Then he made Eve from Adam. I’ve already illustrated elsewhere (XX b4 XY) how that’s scientifically impossible according to genetics, which the writers and editors behind the Old Testament could not have known back then. They figured there must have been a first man and a first woman and that their god must have made them. The rest of the story of Adam and Eve is an extrapolation of these assumptions.
According to what many sciences have observed, from archaeology to zoology and many other disciplines along the alphabet, homo sapiens have existed on this planet up to roughly two hundred thousand years ago. The oldest known fossils for our species have been found in Africa. However, hominins (which are humanoid species still closer to us than chimpanzees) fossils date back as far as 1.2 million years ago. None of these species still exist today, either because they became us, or because our ancestors killed them off, probably in tribal warfare. Also plagues, famine, environmental disaster or other factors could have been involved. There’s a lot of speculation but no evidence to how they lived. We do have fossils though, so we know they DID exist. Whether we helped facilitate their extinction, or they woulda all died off anyway is anyone’s guess.
If what the Abrahamic Creation story claimed was actually true, we would have found no fossils of other human like beings. We would instead find no fossils, and when we did look for answers in this universe, we’d find evidence that actually corroborates the story. We do not. We continue to uncover evidence that reveals a far more elaborate story of our evolution. There were no first homo sapiens. Humanoid mammals or “Great Apes” have existed on this planet for millions of years. This doesn’t come from a single resource written only two thousand years ago, but countless science books written by learned scholars of many disciplines who examined actual physical evidence found in the real world. Just because you don’t understand all of it doesn’t make it untrue. I don’t understand much of it, but I can see the difference between a story with evidence to back it up and a story that has no evidence to back it up.
Which brings me back to incest. The Old Testament chastises people for witchcraft, adultery, theft, murder (when a god isn’t telling you to kill), and even carrying a bushel of wheat on your back on the Sabbath day. However, I don’t recall it saying much bad about incest. In fact, as the illustration points out above, incest is a requirement for the creation myth to work. Adam and Eve somehow gave birth to enough children that they were able to eventually become humanity. That’s the creation myth. If you don’t believe in Adam and Eve then you’re not an Abrahamic Believer. You may call yourself one, but you are lying to yourself and others. You can’t call yourself a Jew or a Christian or a Muslim if you dismiss Adam and Eve as allegorical. That’d be like calling yourself a football player but refusing to touch a football cuz it might sully your hands.
Even Abraham and his wife Sarah were half-siblings, yet their offspring eventually became the twelve tribes of Israel; precursors to jews and muslims and even some christians. Being half-brother and half-sister might explain why it was difficult for Sarah to have Abraham’s children, but I don’t get the feeling when reading the old testament that people back then had really put two and two together. They did not realize that blood relatives having children could increase infant mortality rates or lead to more birth defects. There’s even a part in the Song of Solomon where a woman tells her lover she wishes he was her brother so her mom would tell them to go in the backroom and he could show her how to make love. I’m not making this up. Go read Song of Solomon for yourself. It’s very racy. Breasts are gazelles. Racy stuff.
It was commonly accepted in Egypt around Moses time and perhaps even up until a few centuries ago. Although when you look at greek stories, they kinda figured it out. The story of Oedipus and Jocasta was about an orphaned man growing up and falling in love with his own mother, though at the time neither of them knew they were related. When they found out, Oedipus gouged out his eyes. So this was not a new concept. Incest has always been a kinda taboo throughout recorded human history, although it’s unclear that we scientifically knew why exactly until relatively recently. Some cultures in the world still allow incest, and I’m not speaking just about rural areas of southern US states. Presumably some people still believe if birth defects happen its because their god willed it, or some evil demon caused it to happen, and certainly not because when two people are too closely related, their combined genetic parameters lead to an increase in probability for birth defects and infant mortality. Maybe we still don’t completely understand why, but science is figuring it out. Maybe someday we’ll even be able to figure out how to genetically make this a nonissue, as some scientists are exploring the possibilities of genetically manipulating offspring while still inside the womb. That’s a whole other kettle of fish though.
Throughout the Middle Ages in Europe, the aristocracy of royal and noble families often refused to fraternize sexually with people not of their own stature: at least not officially. I mean the more powerful you are the more you get to fuck pretty much whoever you want, but having children out of wedlock was often policed by many nosy individuals who wanted to keep their bloodlines clear. However, what these idiots didn’t know what pure bloodlines is actually bad for future generations. The more variety you have in your offspring, the hardier your genetic makeup appears to be and the results are of healthier future generations. So everywhere from royal family blood lines to skinhead Nazi shit-eaters. Incest is wrong. Not cuz it’s some kind of moral imperative from an Abrahamic god. The Abrahamic god didn’t seem to have any problems with incest at least in the old testament.
It’s scientifically wrong. It’s genetically wrong. Whether or not it’s morally wrong should not even enter into the argument.
Any belief system that claims mankind was founded on incest is also wrong. NOT morally. Physically. It just couldn’t have happened that way. Cain and Seth did not have sex with their younger sisters that the bible conveniently didn’t bother to even name or describe. Some Believers answer this for themselves by claiming their god allowed angels to have sex with them, or they come up with some other explanation that is outside the canon of the creation myth. The bible conveniently avoids explaining the details, yet somehow manages to detail the entire lineage of Jesus. The devil is indeed in those details, probably fucking his sister.
Any belief system that says you can’t have sex with a black person cuz you’re white, or vice versa, is wrong. In fact, we should be ENCOURAGING interracial breeding. The FURTHER away we can get from incest, the better. THAT is science talking, and not some moral imperative. However, science doesn’t force interracial breeding cuz science isn’t a religion. However, the evidence suggests that would be a better practice than the segregation we still have in most cultures today.
This should not mean cousins can’t kiss. It just means they shouldn’t breed. If we could look at ourselves more rationally and stop counting sins, the world we make for ourselves could be a much better place with less judging and more being nice to each other. There’d be more love in it and less hate. Although kissing cousins does personally give me the willies, if it brings happiness to others (provided they are both consenting adults or maybe ‘young adults’ being chaperoned by open-minded guardians with their best interests at heart etc), who am i to judge?
I’m not saying we should encourage cousins to kiss, but if they do, people shouldn’t put a hex on both their houses. That’s just being silly. They also shouldn’t get married and try to have kids though. We’ve known since Abraham and Sarah, since Oedipus, that’s also just being silly.
If the Abrahamic texts were correct, incest would work, and would be a viable way to perpetuate offspring. In reality, if we were to take a single family and put them on a space ship and send them to another planet, even the best case scenario would be they would die out in less than a century. Unless they could somehow breed with the indigenous peoples they found there. We would need to send at least twenty different families from vastly different parts of our world and discourage segregation to hope to perpetuate our species on another planet. At any rate, the bottom line is this: incest doesn’t work. We know it doesn’t work. I doubt you believe it works, and if you still do after reading this now YOU are just being silly. Why believe in a god that believed it worked? Why believe in a god that’s either not omnipotent about his own creation, or imaginary and made up by ignorant men thousands of years ago who liked their half-sisters perhaps a little too much?