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“Of God And Aliens?” (Short Story).

December 6, 2018

cropped-12301412301.jpg“Why does it matter?” The tone was sarcastic, almost to the point of wanting to get into an argument on the subject of evolution versus creation.

“I’m just stating that either God did it as recorded in the Bible or it didn’t happen in six literal days as described in the Scriptures, George.”

George wasn’t buying any of it, “Six literal days as in twenty-four day into six straight days long?”

Josh agreed with a nod, “Yes. that’s what Torah says…”

Frowning, “Torah?”

He had to smile, “Sorry, you none Jew types call it the Old Testament in the Bible.”

“Oh, ya, that book,” George sipped his coffee, “I’d rather believe we’re just a alien experiment gone very wrong, Josh, than believe that some God of some kind created all that there is.” He leaned back a bit, stretched his legs a bit and slide his shoes off, “The idea of alien’s being the real starters of humanity or at least in a better direction sounds far more agreeable than the story of the Bible. I can see some ancient alien race coming upon this old planet and seeing these half monkey, half human things slowly evolving but not fast enough for the aliens so they helped a bit. They gave humanity a boost in the right direction for surviving.”

Josh knew the guy was serious, “You’re very serious about that belief? Aliens did it? Aliens set into motion human evolution and helped build civilization?” Of course George was serious, “So you really believe in aliens from other worlds?” Josh Freeman studied the shaggy bearded face of the man across from him, “I’ve read the books of Erich Von Daniken, like his ‘Chariots of the Gods’ and ‘Gold of the Gods.’ I found them good but I wasn’t really convinced by his books.” The author tried to hard to be convincing and tried to hard to make evidence fit into the author’s beliefs. He could see the interruption coming, “I’ve even watched the History Channel program ‘Ancient Aliens.’ and I am sorry, they are trying too hard to make everything into something alien related or created. They are making so much about and by aliens that by the time their done talking I am more convinced that the gods existed than aliens did anything…”

The beefy hand went up as he interrupted as George Le May spoke up, “Josh, I’d sooner believe in little green men from Mars or beings from mythology than the stories from the Bible written by ignorant desert dwellers staring too long at the sun.” Leaning forward a bit, “You’re a Jew aren’t you?”

“Yes.”

“Do you actually believe what is written in that Bible of yours?”

He decided to not correct him, “I believe the pattern for the week can be explained in the Torah’s story of creation. Exodus 20:11…I believe in the Torah because I grew up on it. My family attend synagogue, I do not see anything that indicates aliens had anything to do with our creation, George…” He could see the thoughts being formulated, “I have read the accounts in Genesis, I see no room for aliens in the creation of the world let alone mankind…the Torah is clear on creation.”

George interrupted again,  “Then you believe in the Bible as some God’s inspired word, Freeman? You believe in the fairy stories in that book? Humans made from dirt, talking snakes, and somehow it rained for forty days and covering the whole planet in water? You actually believe in that as written?” He sipped again the coffee he actually didn’t like; he complained at times enough about the job coffee but nothing changed. “So, you think some old guy in the Arabian desert heard a voice telling him that God had a plan for his life?”

“Abraham heard God tell him to get out of Ur and head toward a land He was giving his descendants as an ever lasting covenant…” He could see the mind working in the guy again, “Abraham heard God and obeyed and the rest is history.”

“History, huh?” Le May’s expression said it all, “So, some desert dweller in the ancient past heard a voice coming from the sky telling him to head to Palestine and claim it as his own?”

“There was no Palestine even in the ancient past, George…” He knew that the guy was just saying it to agitate Josh, “What I am saying is that in the Book of Exodus that God Himself told Moses how He made everything and how long it took and why He choice to create as He did. It’s why the Sabbath is so important…” He took notice of the book on the table that the other professor was reading, ‘Of Gods And Aliens.’ By. Tobias Finley; never heard of him thought Josh. He felt the need to quote Exodus but he knew Professor George Le May wouldn’t have tolerated it as he didn’t tolerate much he didn’t agree with. But Josh would at least try, “George, the Book of Exodus explains how and why God created as He did. Exodus 20:11….” He could see the interruption coming, “Look, George, I believe that God laid out how and why He created as He did in Genesis. It’s were we get our week from. God created in six days and rested on one….”

“Seriously? You believe this fairy tale?” Tapping the book a few seconds, “Look, if you want to believe that some tribal deity spoke to some old guy in the desert staring at the sun too long…” The hand went up as Josh was about to say something, “Let me finish. I don’t believe in any God or gods or anything else that my senses can’t explain rationally and using my brain, Josh…” Actually pointing to his thick but grey hair, “See this thing, it’s called the human mind. Religious people for the most part don’t use it much…” Tapping the book again, “Been reading this book lately. He’s a new author I just discovered and I like what he had to say on the subject of the so-called gods of mythology and the evidence for the existence of aliens out there visiting us in the past. Makes more sense than some old book that they have keep making new translations of every few years to get it right…”

He so badly wanted to interrupt.

“….I have nothing against religious people, Josh. I really don’t. If they want to believe the earth is damn flat then I don’t care all that much if they wish to be ignorant about science…” Again the brief tapping on the book, “The author of this book says that the gods were probably aliens and those ancient people just simply misunderstood what they were seeing and called them gods….” He leaned back a bit, “He simply makes the point that those ancient people were ignorant of the universe and assumed what they were seeing were gods and their flying machines were just chariots of one kind or another. They simply called these alien beings gods because they had no word for extraterrestrial so they called them gods and mythology was born….”

“So, the gods like Zues, Odin, and Osiris were nothing but aliens?” He wanted to at least smile but knew the man was serious, “So all the stories of Greek, Roman, Norse and so forth where nothing but misunderstandings of the aliens and their technology?” He studied the man he had known only for the last three years, “So all those stories of the gods and human is nothing more than alien encounters that the humans simply didn’t understand?” He felt the need to repeat himself on some level, “Everything can’t be alien related, George, just can’t be…it just sounds too weird that somehow all those great stories of mythology are nothing more than ancient people thinking that the gods they were seeing were in fact aliens they just didn’t understand it…”

The hand went up, “It’s no more weird than the believe that we are nothing but the dirt of the ground created by some god, Josh. It’s no stranger to believe in some god who created everything in six actual days…” He tapped the table again, “Evolution via alien intervention makes more sense than some god there’s no proof of. The book I am reading clearly makes his point that even our DNA was probably tampered with and they gave it a little push toward evolving into modern man…”

“You’ve turned us into a science experiment then?”

“No, they did according to the author. He makes the claim that the aliens saw potential in the strange looking creatures they found here and simply altered their DNA; possible with their own….”

“So, what of the spiritual aspect of human beings?”

“Not needed by the aliens who came and altered our DNA. I also see no reason for such a belief in the spiritual anymore than they did. The ancient peoples simply mistook the aliens for gods of some kind and created legends and stories to explain it all.” Adding, “I believe that a naturalistic view of life is a logical view of life. The aliens simply gave human evolution a little boost in the right direction.”

“So, a naturalistic world view?”

“I don’t believe in what I can’t see and I believe that the normal processes of evolution explain the origins of everything to be seen or sensed by all the other senses. The aliens came, they tinkered a bit with the human like apes on this planet and left at some point. I don’t need a book of fairy tales to explain life to me or it’s origins….”

He had to interrupt, “Humanity is God’s crowning creation. He made man in His own image. It’s His crowning creation because God…”

The hand went up, the scowl never left, he was blunt, “I have no use for anything spiritual, religious, or anything else I can’t see. Evolution works for me just fine. I like the author’s explanation for  the religious stories that have been created. These ignorant people of the past simply mistook these visitors from the cosmos as gods…”

“God was not a alien race tampering with human genetics, George. Did you say you grew up in a church?” He was sure the guy had mentioned it before during one of their lunchtime conversations. He was glad at the moment the break room was empty except for him and George; it wouldn’t be empty much longer. “What kind of church?”

The expression didn’t change, but he did answer, “Yes, a Baptist Church.” The tone did indeed say it all and none of it was a good thought, “We lived in a small town called Tama in Iowa. It was a place of about three thousand people surrounded by cornfields.” Making a joke badly, “It would have made Stephen King proud. The place always struck me as something between his ‘Salem’s Lot’ and ‘Children of the Corn’…”

Someone walked into the large employee’s break room; May Her entered the room and slightly waved in  their direction.

“It’s cold outside…”

George spoke Bluntly, “Well, it’s Minnesota in December…”

“What happened to Fall?” The young girl replied as she stood at the vending machine contemplating a soda, “I need a warm drink not a soda…”

Josh laughed at that; the reflection in the plastic of the vending machine showed her smile a bit, “I should have stopped off at the gas station for a coffee…” She walked toward the small table where the store supplied it’s employees coffee, “This will have to do…”

“Better than nothing, May.” Josh replied as he watched the young girl; he wondered where Erin was as she was scheduled to work this cold December 6th day in the Rosedale Mall.

May responded with a chirping voice, “Ya, ya, Josh. I’m such a freeze baby in this weather…” She made her coffee, turned around and faced the two of them with her usual smile, “I don’t like this weather…” Sipping her self-made coffee, she made a face, “It’s awful of course….I mean the coffee and weather is just as bad…”

“So move?” That came from George, “You don’t have to stay in Minnesota.” He turned a bit to get a better look at the nineteen year old Hmong girl. “I’ve lived here a huge chunk of my life. I like it here, I suppose Asian girls just don’t like the cold…”

May smiled politely to the remark, “I’ve been here my whole life, I just don’t like the cold days like today sometimes, George.”

“Then don’t complain about the cold. It gets cold in Minnesota, May. If you don’t like the cold move back to Nam…”

Still being polite; noting the uncomfortable look on Josh’s uncomfortable face. “My family is from Thailand, well, a refugee camp in Thailand really. Maybe actually from Laos really. I’d have to ask my grandfather…” Adding with a polite smile, “He fought in the Vietnam War…” Sipping more of the coffee, “Tastes too bitter, but I am running late for my department….” She tossed the empty cup into the trash can, “Talk at you later, Josh…”

George frowned at the statement; Josh tried to not look amused as he watched her leave the room; she had great butt he thought. He knew George was looking at him.

“Nice ass.” George commented as he sipped his own coffee he brought with him, “It’s a shame it’s not a real Minnesotan one…”

Ignoring the comment, “So, you went to church?”

Noting Josh’s mood, “Yes, I went to a small town church in Iowa. Tama was a small town…”

“Where is this?” He liked the uncomfortable look in the man’s eyes. Idiot.

“Central Iowa. Des Moines is 62 miles west of Tama.”

“Never been there except through it via Grey Hound.”

“You’re not missing much, Josh. Small towns aren’t worth remembering. But we went every Sunday and Wednesday to a church in Marshalltown. It’s twenty odd miles from Tama going north I believe…” Sipping his coffee, “Me, my parents, and my brother James, my two sisters Lydia and Brin, all locked up in that small car and headed off to church against my will anyway.” Sharply, “I hated it all anyway.”

“Your siblings still go?” He suspected he knew the answer but they still had twenty odd minutes left on their lunch break.

“Oh, yes, of course they still go to church. It’s all important to them…”

“Do you visit them at all?”

“My parents? I do on on the holidays when I am able to do so. As for James, well, he’s living in Las Vegas now. Who knows what he’s doing there in Sin City. He lives there with his wife Cindy, so I don’t see him too much either…”

“I see my sister all the time, don’t have a brother. My sister Cora lives in Maplewood, is a teacher at Century College.” He could see that George wasn’t really listening too much nor did he really care but what else was knew. “She teaches creative writing and basic English….”

“Married?”

“She was for a few years, had my niece…”

“Both of my sister’s are still married, have kids of course, they live in Des Moines now. Their welcomed to it….”

“Don’t like Iowa I take it?”

Sharply, “No, no I do not. It’s a small town state and thinking. I avoid visiting Iowa as much as possible. My sister’s like it there and will probably always live there. Their welcomed to it and their church lives as well….”

“So, nothing at all good to say about Iowa?” He was partly joking. “It couldn’t have been that bad?”

He leaned back a bit, “I got out of Iowa as soon as I could. I enjoyed the part where I saw it in my rear view mirror is the one and only time I really liked the scenery of Iowa as it went by and vanished behind me….” A thought seemed to come to him, “It’s like religion, Josh, it’s like spiritual beliefs. I don’t need it, I don’t want it and I don’t want to be part of it….” He took notice of someone entering the room, he seemed to study the person with dislike.

The guy spoke up, “Hey guys, I need something to eat….didn’t have breakfast this morning…”

Josh looked over at the guy from the suit department; everyone knew that Tom was gay.

“Breakfast is overrated, Tom.” Josh replied as he noticed the guy get something from the candy machine.

George Le May said nothing but; Josh wanted to laughed at the man; Tom left the room feeling better.

“Later, Tom.” Josh replied to the wave of the man.

“I don’t like him.” George replied with no attempt to hide his dislike of the friendly guy, too Josh, “As I was saying, religion is fine but not for me because I deal with facts and reality. Evolution is a reality, Aliens tampering, tinkering, whatever else they did is fine for me to believe in. Better than believing in some god of some desert dweller staring into the sun thinking his god spoke to him…”

Back to that are we thought Josh.

“I made it very clear at the age of fifteen to my parents that I was an atheist and I didn’t believe as they did nor was I going to. I stopped going to church, Josh…”

“They just let you stop going to church?”

He frowned a bit, “Oh, there was some unpleasant yelling and such religious accusations that I was now going to go to hell for disbelieving in God of their religion…”

“When did you decide you no longer believed as they did?”

Pleased about something, “I was fifteen.”

“Fifteen?”

“I was sitting in the front pew as all preacher’s families do for some reason…”

Josh frowned this time more puzzled than anything, “Your dad was the pastor?”

The expression said it all, mostly disgust with the information, “He was preaching about the Deity of Jesus. Going on and on about how John the Apostle in his Gospel account of Jesus declared the Godhood of Jesus…”

“I’m Jewish, so…”

Not listening, “….I sat there listening to his sermon about how the early church taught this message and how and why it had to be true that Jesus was a Jewish God…”

Josh frowned but listened.

“….Jesus was God because only God could save through His sinless life and death on the cross. Forty-five minutes of such non-sense I was embarrassed by the sermon…” He sipped some coffee, “Jesus was God, Jesus was the only Way, the only Life, the Truth…and I sat there thinking that this was absolutely ridiculous….”

“So you believed aliens did it all?” He wasn’t sure about George’s theology having that Josh had taken a religion class many years ago and where he met his Cora in the Art History class he took as well.

“I would rather believe that aliens came to this planet and off and on has helped humanity evolve and grow as a species than believe that somehow a god turned himself into a man who walked the earth in that backwater called Palestine and probably never said or did anything that is written in that Bible my dad preaches from. I’d rather believe that Jesus was an alien and Jesus simply was misquoted and had made up stories about Him by ignorant fishermen than believe that my dad was preaching the truth…” He clenched his fist a bit, “I simply stopped believing in this Jesus of the Incarnation because it sounds absurd and like a story made up…”

“And aliens make more sense than what Christians claim as who Jesus was?”

“Look, you’re not a Christian are you?”

“No, still very Jewish. Not practicing but….”

“Christians have to believe some very strange and weird things to believe Jesus was anything but some homeless Jew preaching something that no one at the time thought to record. I sat there listening to absolute nonsense that Jesus was God in human flesh….I’d rather believe in little green men from Mars…”

“Well, there we will have to agree to disagree. I may not be a practicing Jew but I am a Jew who believes in God…”

“There is no God, Josh, hate to shatter your beliefs but God or any god for that matter is a mythology created by ignorant people encountering something they couldn’t explain so they created gods from these cosmic visitors. Maybe as that author said, Jesus was a normal Jew from Palestine with some help from the cosmic visitors and was simply misunderstood and arrested for His message and nailed to a cross and is still dead and buried somewhere in Palestine…” Looking at his phone, “Breaks almost over, but I am telling you, Josh, I like what this author is writing and I agree with him. The great leaps in evolutionary life could only have happened with help from some outside force and I agree with him that it was probably ancient visitors from outer space….”

“I think I will stick to the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, George. I find nothing in the Torah or Scriptures as a whole that indicates that aliens had anything to do with God creating…” He could see the guy getting already impatient with his comments, “I’ve listened to everything you said and then some,  George. I simply do not agree that God’s crowning creation was actually a scientific experiment by cosmic beings with too much free time on their hands. I believe the Torah and that God alone created, God alone set into motion all that came forth from creation…” He could see the man struggling to not interrupt, “I believe that God spoke to Abraham and not because he was starring into the sun all day long but because he sought God and God found him faithful…”

He had to say something, “You can’t even proof Abraham even existed, Josh, let alone God…”

“Well, even the Christians believe Abraham existed, George, and their not completely wrong about everything in the Bible.”

“Not really an answer, Josh.” The smirk said it all, “You really take all that crap in the Bible as literal history?” He leaned back a bit, looked at his watch again, frowned at something, “Josh, you believe what you want, believe in invisible gods but I want nothing to do with it. My father only proved to me that people will believe anything that answers questions with answers they want to hear and not what they should hear or need to hear. There is no god, there is nothing but evolution in action and I see no reason to not believe that the author is correct that our evolution from simple apes to man sounds far more believable to me than some book of fairy tales and wishful thinking and simply bad theology…”

He wanted to interrupt more than he was, “I believe in God, George, because the universe is far to wonderful with creation and far too complicated to have just happened by chance…”

“Alien technology, Josh. The evidence is very much there if one reads that book with an open mind and not one of a closed religious mind that refuses to see the evidence. Ancient man simply didn’t understand the technology they were encountering. They simply didn’t understand what they were seeing or who they were encountering as primitive peoples….”

“Not sure they were that primitive, George.” He wondered if the guy had ever read the extra-Biblical writings but he doubted he even heard of the Book of Enoch.

“You going to tell me that you believe man-kind was highly technological in the remote past? Sounds very Christian doctrine of the pre-flood world, Josh. You’re not a Christian remember…”

“It’s still a Jewish book despite the Christians reading it, George. It was our book before they decided to try and take it as their own and only their own…”

“Religious people and their wars over a book of fairy tales….”

“I’m just saying that maybe they were not as primitive as you think they were, George….” The guy was getting bored with the conversation, “I’m just saying the technology of those people may not have been as primitive as you or I think it was. The Book of Enoch for example…”

Standing up, “I’d rather believe in aliens coming here and boosting human evolution than give the Bible one second of credit for anything, Josh….” Adding, “That includes the Book of Enoch which I wouldn’t bother reading anyway.”

“So, it’s a choice between God and aliens and you’ve chosen something there is less evidence for than there is for the evidence of God?”

Anger came, “I don’t care if there is a God, Josh.”

“I gathered that.”

“There is no evidence of a God or gods or anything else beyond the five senses. I don’t have time for spiritual matters nor do I feel that I am missing out on something. I don’t care what you believe, but keep it too yourself. I simply believe that we are not alone in the universe and their not angels or demons or gods or devils….there is just the universe with other civilizations we have yet to discover or they are voiding us like they probably should.” He wanted to leave but he seemed to have a lot more to say but wasn’t sure it was worth saying, “Josh, believe what you want…I think it’s ignorant, but it’s your life….”

“Yes, it is.” The guy so badly wanted to walk away, “I simply believe in God and the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and everything else that followed. I see the hand of God in the universe and everything in it. I don’t see alien technology or anything else that point to aliens tampering with human anything let alone evolution..”

He interrupted impatiently, “Does it damn matter who’s right or wrong? Why does it matter?” He so badly wanted to walk away but didn’t and it sounded it in the sharp reply, “Look, Josh, seriously, why does any of what you or I believe matters except to ourselves?”

Josh thought about that before answering.

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