One hundred and fifty years ago, numerous controversies clouded the academic horizon,controversies which involved the leading scholars of that day. Fossils were being found in everycountry in Europe. Some were discovered high in the Alps, and others were unearthed below sealevel, deep in German or Welsh coal mines. The fossils included remains of marine animals,mammoths, bison, giant birds, dinosaurs, exotic vegetation, and many other hard-to-classify forms.Some were tiny; many were huge. There were so many different forms and sizes of fossils that their classification became quite an art. Some were being found practically in the back yards of theleading academic figures of that day.These abundant fossil finds demanded an explanation. Many, such as Cuvier, felt that some sort of gigantic, watery cataclysm or cataclysms had indeed engulfed the past. This possibility immediatelysuggested the Biblical Flood. Yet others cast about for an alternative explanation. Modernhumanists, increasingly anti-Genesis in outlook, were growing in numbers and in positions of importance, especially in academic circles. To Voltaire, for instance, any mention of the Flood wasoffensive; it implied too much of God, or of judgment, or of the Judeo-Christian heritage. Despiteevidence left by fossils and sedimentary strata, as well as literary heritages, a Biblical Flood wastaboo to him, and to many others.Voltaire was somewhat typical of the anti-spiritual humanists of his day. He was thoroughly anti-Christian and anti-Judaistic. He felt that the burial of the Bible in general, and the Genesis record in particular, would be a great service to mankind. Yet during his lifetime, most natural scientistsleaned toward catastrophism. They mostly revered the Judeo-Christian heritage.But anti-spiritual humanists, like Voltaire or Kant, usually applauded anything which tended todiscredit the Genesis record of catastrophes. Thus, the doctrine of uniformitarianism was born andnurtured from the mother principle of humanism, as was the daughter principle of evolution--merely biological uniformitarianism. Evolution and uniformitarianism practically requiredagnosticism, and they made atheism increasingly respectable, even virile. The viewpoints of theearly catastrophists became outmoded and were gradually discarded, and then they were all butforgotten. Thus our century has received an almost pure heritage of uniformitarianism, and as aconsequence, is leaving a legacy of anti-spiritual humanism in various forms.
Modern uniformitarianism was conceived 200 years ago, and about 100 years ago it became thedominant theory of Earth history. Its advocates maintained that our planet and our solar system havehad a serene past in terms of multiplied millions of years. No great, sudden cataclysms ever occurred. But is this theory defensible in the light of new evidence? Was it ever really defensible inthe light of former evidence?There are abundant evidences of a watery, global cataclysm -- evidences which are not easilyrefuted. They are so universal, so astounding, and so inter-related that they require re-examination.How is it explained, for instance, that ancient peoples, from six separate continents, almostinvariably had a Flood tradition? Why is it that ancient peoples almost always had a pantheon of sky-gods and traditions of celestial chaos? Why is it that ancient peoples all over the world, indiverse cultures possessing independent traditions, yet possessed similar traditions of cataclysmscontaining similar motifs? And if the ancients simply happened to have comparable or corresponding hallucinations, why, then, does our solar system also contain abundant evidences of historical astral chaos? And is it possible that our Earth could have escaped this? Re-examination of these universal evidences and their implications leads to a serious and careful consideration of theFlood catastrophe.