In Genesis, Chapter 11 God observed the tower that King Nimrod and his Babylonian people had built to reach heaven and the gods and said, “Behold the people is one and they have one language … now nothing will be constrained from them.”
So the gods destroyed the tower, convoluted the one language into many and stopped human progress toward godly status. The Tower of Babel was the ultimate example of the axiom, “Pride goeth before a fall.” Now I do not understand why God would not want people to reach for the heavens, but He certainly devised the perfect way to stop us. Of course, in Exodus Chapters 20 and 34, He warns us He is a jealous being and in Isaiah Chapter 55 He tells us not to try to figure Him out as His ways are higher than our ways and His thoughts are higher than our thoughts. Just a few frustrating moments of trying to understand what the jangling television commercials are saying or an attempt to make sense out of the song lyrics mumbled and slurred into multi-million dollar sound systems designed to make sounds intelligible, will remove any doubt that our contemporary cacophony of colliding incoherent babel surpasses all understanding. Human progress has been hoisted on the effete petard of the universal response to all attempts to communicate, “Huh?”
It is as if the gods have become overly concerned about humanity’s movement back to a universal language, Amazonia perhaps, and have come down to earth to stop us from “all just getting along” by shopping over the Internet. After all, if we can communicate from sea to shining sea via a few simple electronic clicks, there is much less likelihood of a major miscommunication and ergo a misunderstanding that might escalate to conflict. Heck, we might even learn to work together on all sorts of projects, world famine, global warming, the World Cup, who knows what heights we could reach?
Well, if Jeff Bezos is the new King Nimrod and if Jeff really does simply work full-time giving his billions made from Amazon away to charity, I can foresee the Old Testament gods getting concerned. And one way to staunch human progress is to release upon the world Satans of the communications world, you know, movies, cable tv, commercials and what passes for contemporary music.
The goal of the gods might be to attack human progress by having leaders of competing countries such as China and the US of A rely upon translations of news broadcasts in which snippets of the highly paid but incomprehensible speakers instead of enunciating important concepts, peaceful coexistence for example, mumble a leader’s language so that the words come out as threats of nuclear war.
Now I realize this whole column may be based on a false premise of my being personally challenged. Maybe you, Gentle Reader, have no difficulty making sense out of what is muttered during TV, radio, movies, plays, concerts, sporting events, and even sermons. If my failings are simply my personal problem, good, and amen. However, if the whole world is being prevented from understanding what the heck is truly being said and meant, I suggest this new Tower of Babel may soon come tumbling down.
On the other hand, there is a cure to this polemic pandemic, could everyone please slow down and speak up?