The hell...? (religion) :wtf
September 07, 2015
OK, this is happening in Arkansas, so it can be explained, to some extent ......

I have a few high school classmates (class of 1978) as Friends on FB. We hung out and were friends or I know of them and don't remember them being jerks. Only one (happened to be my BFF, back then) did I unFriend, later. Their profiles are set up so I can see posts and pictures from many of the others who aren't on my Friend list.

Having a slow holiday coverage day at work, I'm piddling, looking at former classmates who show up in the feeds.

The fuck is with all this religion? Seriously. Like 90% of them are posting Jeezus memes or "Praise da lord!" nonsense. The commonality is that none of these people escaped that forsaken hell-hole, like I did, but stayed in Arkansas and, typically, married their friends' siblings.

Some of these people were wild (well, as wild as you could be in a 1970's era backwater Arkansas town). None of them - none - went to church back then.

Is it because there is not much social life there? I think the county is still dry, though the next one over is where a very popular lake is which attracts tourists, therefore - booze. But there is nothing remarkable or interesting for a hundred miles except Branson - which isn't intellectually stimulating, fer sure.

Is religion what middle-age folks turn to when they are bored and live in a luckless area? If so - PRAISE DA LORD! I got out of there! I just came off a page where one of my former classmates "found da LORD!" and is being baptized at the fish camp where people normally gather to catch trout.

What really made me sad, and eventually unFriend her, is that my bestest bestie in high school is the very worst of them. She had promise. Very-very smart, headed to away-college after graduation, I figured we'd catch up later in life and compare career and life success. Instead, she married some dolt at college, quit after her first year, came home and started having kids. Three of the fugliest, most feckless, useless looking people I have ever seen.

We caught up on FB a few years ago and traded mutual "squeee!" remarks in happiness. But it wasn't long before her talk turned tiresome. Allll about the disappointments she's had. She married three times - twice to the same guy with a different guy in between. Went to work at some minimum wage factory. Now in her 50s, she says she makes $9/hour. All she lives for is bragging about her kids and grandkids. Why, I don't know. She sees something in them that I don't. And religion --- fucking religion. Her religion sustains her. It's the only thing that kept her alive in the "darkest hours of my life." Her FB page is all about the religious memes, plus Faux Newz crap and the latest bilge from the conservative politicians.

I would never have thought that such a smart, sparkling person would turn into a hopeless, middle-age, religion-dependent person. Damn, all the young people I knew back then were at least lively and looked with hope toward the future. Now they are staid, fat and religious.

I've been getting messages about a 40th (fortieth! AAAAAGH!) high school reunion. I have never been to any of the others and certainly don't have any interest in meeting my fellow almost-senior age classmates. Especially now that they are cowled in religion.

I swear, I'm not the stick thin person I was back then, but I do take pride in trading the silly teen energy for irreverence, that I have never lost my interest and pursuit of knowledge and diverse learning, and that I am definitely not religious. Faith, maybe, being closer to the end of life now than I was then, but not religion in the sense that so many of the Class of 78ers obsess over.
Re: The hell...? (religion) :wtf
September 09, 2015
I think some people just like to put on a show on FB even if they aren't that religious.
I think other people have built their entire lives accept work around their churches and religions. They go to church services and potlucks all day Sunday. They play on church softball teams, their kids are in youth groups, the serve on committees, volunteer for mission trips, teach classes and go to retreats with friends to the point their entire social lives are wrapped up in church.
Re: The hell...? (religion) :wtf
September 25, 2015
Yeah, I have a friend that grew up in Alabama. When I met her, we were both in our late 20s and partying together on a happy hour circuit through work. She loved hooking up with all the guys, was good-looking, had game, and didn't give a shit. She was fresh out of law school and working JAG for our military service, drinking and fucking her brains out. Uh, we both were...

Anyway, she met a nice guy and got engaged after dating him for 3 years. As soon as that ring was on her finger, she became Super Catholic. Anything and everything got filtered through the Jeebus lens. "Oh, we want to raise our family with good Christian morals, "Oh, I regret having ever had sex out of wedlock, I'm sooo ashamed of myself."

WTF, we had a blast for like, SIX YEARS and all of a sudden she's the fuckin' Churchlady? Not only in six years of friendship did I not know that she was Catholic, but I didn't even know she had a religious inkling in her entire being. Now her Facebook feed is all about how women should dress more conservatively because we're whores (the whole yoga pants debate, #whorepants) and it's disrespectful to the menfolk, how God is working in her life, etc.

The only thing working in her life is her ability to shit out kids. She gains 40 pounds with each child, so she is now about to sprog the third and looks like a fuckin' whale. She used to be this Sophia Vergara sexy Latina, and now she's just a mess in oversized t-shirts and grandma white-sneakers.

I don't know why these Southern women do this shit, but it boggles my mind. She's a fucking lawyer, went to Tulane so it's not like she's stupid, she should know better!!!
Re: The hell...? (religion) :wtf
September 25, 2015
I don't think it's limited to just the Christian people, either. I've found recently that some pagan people can be just as breederly and just as deeply silly as any Christian.

Friend of mine in college was raised liberal Unitarian by her parents, got to college, figured out she was bisexual, and proceeded to happily have the sexytimes with many boys, girls, trees, and rocks. She didn't brag, kiss/tell, or give me a run-down of her activities...but over the years I got the overall impression that she was pretty adventurous. She was out to her friends at school, her parents back home, and was planning on being out to her employers after college, too. (midwest US, early 90s, so fairly brave of her)

After college she got back together with her old boyfriend from high school (they'd been together long-distance during college). I figured they continued to have the open relationship arrangement they'd had when she was away at college. Somewhere around this time she also got religion and went the pagan new age route. They got married, had a couple kids.

Now her FB page is nothing but SJW stuff, pictures of her kids, and pagan equivalents of "Praise Jeezus" and "God is in my life". Seriously. You could change a few deity names and some other phrases, and it's the same shit.

When we were chatting online about National Coming Out Day, she said something about hoping that she's still a good ally. My response was, means someone who's not LGBT but sticks up for them. As a bisexual you're under the LGBT umbrella. Her response was that she doesn't think she was ever bisexual at all & her sexuality was "just really fucked up back then". I was stunned, because what I saw back in college was not someone who was in any way sexually dysfunctional or doing anything wrong. She was SO damn happy then. And YES, her attraction to women was genuine, believe me. I saw her around them.

I think she just didn't think that non-monogamy and bisexuality and sexual adventures aren't possible when you're a "real grown-up". And once you have kids, you'd better settle down, be monogamous, act hetero, and divorce yourself from all those silly things you did in college. I think she applied a thick layer of religion to make this easier or something. She's too feminist to stomach regular Christianity, so she went with a sorta smorgasbord of pagan-y things to keep herself distracted.

Funny thing...unlike the people Dorisan mentioned, she DID get outta dodge after high school, but wound up boomaranging back and marrying her high school sweetheart. They've been together since age sixteen. I know people manage to hit the proverbial dating lottery and find a truly compatible life partner early on. But I wonder in her case.

And I don't think any amount of any kind of religion is going to make her straight. Or happily monogamous. Or vanilla. She's gonna be a ticking sexual time bomb.
Re: The hell...? (religion) :wtf
September 26, 2015
I also don't understand why some people are so eager to throw their past selves under the bus. Is it dissatisfaction with their current life?

I'm a lot more sexually discriminate than I was in my 20s. My tastes have changed, but that doesn't mean that promiscuity was the wrong choice when I was younger. I was careful and never got an STI or pregnant, so I really don't see anything to regret about it, since I enjoyed it at the time.

I don't understand why some people have such a hard time looking back on an earlier part of their lives and saying "It's not what I want now, but it made me happy at the time."
Re: The hell...? (religion) :wtf
October 28, 2015
I don't understand why some people have such a hard time looking back on an earlier part of their lives and saying "It's not what I want now, but it made me happy at the time."

Yep. And the friend I mentioned WAS smart and safe about what she did.

I think part of it is the social tendency to assume that any type of non-monogamy must be deeply rooted in dysfunction, danger, and shallowness. Plus a dose of good ol' fear of women having any type of sexual agency.

Not surprising that I have less and less to say to her.
Re: The hell...? (religion) :wtf
November 26, 2015
This is a most interesting topic.

Which I have glanced at before, but just did now read all the way through (and responses.)

I like to read about others experiences. I live in an urban area (w. side o' Chi) and don't know or meet many 'religious' people. I am not religious. I got spotted (as a jew) - by a Moroccan the other day. Yeah they can spot us. He's this neighbor's H - the one who has recently decided I'm her New Best Friend and has subsequently decided to unload all her issues, and the neighborhood gossip, on me. Great. She's an Italian. Yanno - See? Da Jews are always in wit de Eyetalians ~ Alla Dem People - they're always in wit each other ~

Ha, I don't know. That's stereotyping myself. And a broader thing, I believe, is that 'any and all' nuts are attracted to me, for some reason.
Our 'area' here is An Hipster area. Even the Olds are Hipsters. You wanna know what a shrunk down little - 65 year old - Eyetalian guy looks like in skin tight skinny jeans? He's actually not that bad looking of a guy. Does he chew gum constantly and drive a Corvette? Of course he does. Ha. Another 'operator' around here who is quite good looking - I even briefly 'contemplated' him so to say, and I think he has his eye on me - he's even older. Nice looking man though, and very 'charming' / charismatic. Rrrarrr!
Too bad he's married.

You need to leave the old men alone Zoey. HA, yeah.

There's alot of interesting characters here. This is the "Most Urban" area I have lived in.

And I have always lived "here". The General Area. I grew up in Michigan, however - and because of *that* - you'll get some Stink Eye. Oh, you're not a REAL Chicagoan then! Sigh. Shit gets tiresome.

They give the same shit to any and all who came from any Suburban areas around here. Oh and then - when I was married to my exH - we lived in this $$$ Yuppy Burb - and you'll get *even moar* eyerolls if you mention *that*!. Hinsdale? You used to live in Hinsdale? OH THE HORROR! BREAK OUT THE YUPPY SPRAY!!!


When I first moved into 'this area' / immediate area - people would say to me - You're not from around here, are you ~
That was about six years ago - and people have stopped asking me this. HA.

My exH was trying to turn me into a Stepford Wife too. Seriously.

I do believe I've had enough of the local lunacy steeped into me by now and do consider myself fully - AN HIPSTER.

Look here - I can pick up *the hottest* of the Elderly Hipsters - so you know it's true.
Re: The hell...? (religion) :wtf
November 26, 2015
Had a bunch of old friends go religious, once the babies started.

I think it's the way they deal with PTSD from EMS.


“There are three things all wise men fear: the sea in storm, a night with no moon, and the anger of a gentle man.”
Re: The hell...? (religion) :wtf
December 29, 2015
From what I've seen, religion is very much like a romantic relationship in the sense that there is an abundance of bad reasons to seek one out, but only one good reason to actually have one. Like, bad reasons for a relationship would include; money, someone to help you with your kids (as is popular to discuss here), you're lonely and anyone will do (even a moron), it's the person your parents wanted you to date, you don't want to be single (which is a can of worms itself), you need someone to Opps to get a child, you need somewhere to live, you don't know how to live by yourself, you think you're in a movie, you want to validate feelings of being wanted even though you don't actually want a relationship, some people are after a person of status, some people want to use others, some of them to get used by you, some of them want to abuse you, some of them want to be abused, and so on.
Those are all terrible reasons to seek someone out for. The only logical reason, to me, to be in a relationship is if you happen to find someone who you really connect with, agree with on fundamental issues, you understand who they are when you look at them, and you want to spend time with them. You love this person, and you treat them well because of it.

With religion, it's very similar. People want all kinds of things from it, and most of them are dumb. Most of the time, when someone presents to me the fact that they are religious, the behavior that they're trying to justify to themselves usually comes next. Or, they're trying to use religion to feel good about themselves.
Some are innocent enough reasons: you want a purpose, you want to feel like a good person, and you believe it can provide that for you. Other times, people want to feel more privileged than other people, or they want to be exclusive to their religion, and be exalted above all others for it, or they want the grandest okay they can find to be despicable.

Parents who would otherwise know better cling to religions that insist that their deity wants to populate the Earth, and have a metric fuck ton of kids they can't afford. Only, in every case, who or whatever insisted upon an intense population surge spoke that line long, long ago, when overpopulation was rather incomprehensible to them. People abuse religion all the time.

So, the only reason you'd honestly find a religion would be because you understand what it is when you look at it, you want to spend time with it, and you love what it represents. Love does not give rise to violence, hate, excuses, or unfair treatment of others. If a religion insists upon these things, it's obviously abusing you, and will not love you in return.

Sorry for the long answer. But the question isn't one I see answered very well, all that often.
Re: The hell...? (religion) :wtf
December 30, 2015
Jamie had a chance, well she really did
Instead she dropped out and had a couple of kids
Chances thrown
Nothing's free
Longing for what used to be
Still it's hard
Hard to see
Fragile lives, shattered dreams

"The Kids Aren't Alright"-the Offspring
Re: The hell...? (religion) :wtf
January 02, 2016
bop - you've got that song going through my head so now I have to listen to it *opens youtube*

People embrace religion for many different reasons. Now I don't mean to offend anyone on here if they are religious.

I think most of them embrace it for some structure, believing that there's some mysterious sky daddy up there telling them what to do and how to live their life. They're lost.

Others embrace it as they need it as a scapegoat for their actions, using the good book to do as such and mock and torment others that don't follow their lifestyle (sound familiar?) using the almighty book to throw words at people to tell them how to live and if they aren't doing it their way than they are 'going to hell'

They are having children for selfish and narcissistic reasons, or are simply irresponsible. Funny... Those are the terms often used to describe the CF

~Live, Laugh, Love~
Re: The hell...? (religion) :wtf
January 02, 2016
I was raised in the Roman Catholic church, and my family is quite religious. That being said, I don't practise anymore but I am spiritual. I find religion to be a crazy man-made institution, designed to control its population. I have my own personal beliefs but don't push them on others. I'm kind of a live and let live person, but still believe in the basic teachings.

I mainly left the church because of the control issue, and I also didn't believe in a lot of what was being said. I didn't want to feel like I was going to go to Hell if I didn't give money to the church, or confess every little sin I did to the priest or not believe in things that they believed...such as, I am pro choice, and the Roman Catholic church, as we all know is anti choice.

Every once in awhile, my family will give me a rough time about it, but I just let it in one ear and out the other. If they want to spend their time going to church on Sunday, that's their business. I choose to sleep in and have coffee with my hubby instead.
Re: The hell...? (religion) :wtf
January 02, 2016
I was raised in the Roman Catholic church, and my family is quite religious. That being said, I don't practise anymore but I am spiritual. I find religion to be a crazy man-made institution, designed to control its population. I have my own personal beliefs but don't push them on others. I'm kind of a live and let live person, but still believe in the basic teachings.

I mainly left the church because of the control issue, and I also didn't believe in a lot of what was being said. I didn't want to feel like I was going to go to Hell if I didn't give money to the church, or confess every little sin I did to the priest or not believe in things that they believed...such as, I am pro choice, and the Roman Catholic church, as we all know is anti choice.

Every once in awhile, my family will give me a rough time about it, but I just let it in one ear and out the other. If they want to spend their time going to church on Sunday, that's their business. I choose to sleep in and have coffee with my hubby instead.

Alot of this stuff was *invented by* the Romans and does not line up with *recorded Jewish, or any other contemporary, history*.

It's ALL (including Islam) a load of BS IMO.

I was thinking of the 'here and now' because one of my neighbors is going to Morocco for a month. And I'm jealous.

This is the guy who 'spotted me as a Jew', ha, said to his wife - who has latched onto me lately - Who's that "Jew Girl" you were talking to ~
I did not take this in a 'hostile' way, he's very polite to me and always says hi. He seems OK, I guess. I hope he is because they make that roasted Goat there ~ it's like a Gyro ~
I figured he'd know how to cook that. I see them outside bbq - ing alot.
I found a store that sells goat here too.

Hey M6 ~
You wanna piss off your relatives - we should go on Holiday to Morocco! And you can tell them you're gonna run off with some crazy Jew broad and eat goats n shit. And by n shit I mean - smoke a SHIT TON of Opium! grinning smiley

'Blue Town' ~ is beautiful ~

And THE FOOD! I wish I could go ~
It's so cold here - I'm literally shivering.

Weather forecast for Casablanca - 70's.
sad smiley

Anyway - I was reminded of this too when you said 'spiritual' or etc. because this guy said - of our neighborhood here - "It's like a ghost town". Or "Is full of ghosts" or something like that. Yikes.

But you have to figure that Morocco is bright and sunny, and it is here too - in the Summer. In Fall and Winter it is - rather spooky. Grey and 'bleak' somewhat. Foggy too and alot of 'wood lands' so it does seem rather creepy and spooky at this time of year. I do hope he was just getting 'that vibe'. Or maybe he's Psychic and this place IS full of ghosts!? Erg.

I should move to Morocco!

You get tired of it though. Weather, climate I mean. I actually *do like* changing seasons and do actually like 'this time of year' here. Mostly.

Also M6 - I thought of something else re - your interest in Antiques. And specifically Art Deco and Art Nouveau. Tel Aviv is *loaded* with this stuff! You would love it there! You may want to take a trip there sometime - but also - just for Antiques - look online. Even small, local shops and sellers - have pix of their things for sale online. And I'd guess connected to / selling on ebay and other such large sites. And Int'l shipping (for non heavy stuff anyway lol) - is not too bad. Well, you might like the Architecture, Art, and Antiques to be found there, you might not like the hot weather.

I wish I could go there right now too!
I can't afford it. I can't go anywhere. Because all extra money has to go to dentist and car repair bills.*

Maybe I could go to the tan spa ~

* I think this actually disproves 'religion'. If I am supposed to be one of the "Chosen People" - why you do me liek dis, Gawd?
Re: The hell...? (religion) :wtf
January 02, 2016
I thought of something else ~

An example of Sci over Religion, I suppose - and it's kind of depressing ~

I do like to read about History. I am an American, I was born elsewhere, that was by happenstance, my parents, and grand parents too - are / were US, UK, Israeli or Egyptian citizens. And the latter two on that list are US / UK proxy states / same thing.

Ooo I saw a rather snide comment in a biz / econ book I read lately, about Int'l trade in Africa - guy (an Egyptian) - the Author asked him - is Egypt Middle Eastern or African? 'Culture wise' as was the context. The guy said - neither. It's American. As well as 'being America's lap dog', something like that. Ouch.
Yeah I'd agree though.

So I get tired of reading the 'boring biz books', which I have to keep up with for work purposes, current events / trends, yadda - and some other topics I like to read about, which in some ways are even connected also, such as environmental issues, and 'history' in some respects ~
Maybe not "Ancient History" - which is a subject I like to read about.

So I read in this book - there was some 'old skeleton' - but they could not tell if it was M or F, nor Middle Eastern nor European. The gist of it being - might be female, or could be ME male, lighter bones or - I forget ~
The word they used was gracile.

I had to look this up. I'd like to think I have a pretty good vocabulary, I was not familiar. And was 'inferring' - something like 'more graceful'? ??? I didn't quite get it so I looked it up. I take it to mean - a lighter bone structure or something like that.

I was interested because I sure as shit ain't graceful by no means! IMO I am small to - medium - 'boned'. Remember that thing - if you can get your thumb and fore finger around your wrist?
Yes I can. Can't used 'big boned' as an excuse for being flabby. Robbed again! Why you do me dis way YHWH?

Oh BTW - you all Religious types are worshipping the Jewish God of War.

I am DEF NOT graceful in any case. Rather clumsy.

In fact I tried to find out more about this - and I did.

There's an actual term for this - Dyspraxia. The interested can Google that, there's enough of info out there on it. One thing I saw was that it may be caused by -
parental neglect.

Now consider the hard core Religious types - who will maybe tell you - that it's *your fault*. Or you maybe 'are cursed'. Or possessed by demons. Lucky for me I'm just 'sorta clumsy' eh? And live in 'modern times'.

Just muse on that for awhile. I'm sure countless parents have beat poor little Susie for not being 'graceful' enough, or Clumsy Johnny for not being a Sport Star. And 'the religious' will use that to berate and beat their children too.

And when all along - perhaps the condition the kid is in - is their fault ~

sad smiley
Re: The hell...? (religion) :wtf
January 02, 2016
Organized, massive religion has been an embarrassment, and the absolute destruction of theological reason.

Because of it, people feel like "religion" equals "people that think they're better than you, coming to your door and bothering you", and any other stereotype you can think of. I'm sure you're thinking of some right now.
As if they don't know better. As if they don't know what it looks like, the kind of vibe it has, and they don't realize they're probably not doing anyone any good. Some mean well, others don't. I, for one, don't condone the practices of grouping together/ church and what it equals in other religions (anyone could tell you anything, and you're expected to listen, and respect it), knocking on doors (people don't care, and they know it, they might as well be pushing people away with both hands), or even categorizing yourself in any specific group of followers (often called denominations.) These provide a label and a harness, and they'll tell you anything they want while you're wearing it, and insist you're wrong if you refuse. Some people love their harnesses, because with the harness comes the projected reward. (Excuse, money, safety, an upstanding citizen image, what have you.)
Of course, they have no idea that's what's going on. The harness offers comfort, but it is a lie.

They're never told that whatever deity-Zilla would never agree with what they're doing, and under no circumstances are they not to question and be sure of what they're doing. If they want to know, they can find out, and make their own decisions. If they don't, you're not off the hook, because you obviously don't care that much. You only cared about you, and there is no virtue to be found in that.

Because the reality is, there is no harness, because there shouldn't be. It's actually really hard. Damn near everyone is lying to you (some on purpose, some not), and you have no idea who it is, unless you're very careful.

Any person or group who says "Do not argue" is devoid of common sense- it's by arguing that you learn. (I mean to say arguing as in "questioning", not making an angry opposition.) Learning should never be prohibited. And questioning is the only thing that will help you avoid a harness-turned-choke-collar.

Yet... This makes up religious people almost entirely. It's little wonder that people are angry about it, and throw off religion entirely. So, how can one be religious, but not part of an organized group? There is little room, and almost no recognition for them, because they usually look exactly the same as someone saying, "I enjoy my harness." And there's very little means to tell them apart.
Re: The hell...? (religion) :wtf
January 07, 2016
These are some ideas I had the other day -

It would be more about 'History'.

I was thinking - OK, there are these "Cave Drawings" in France. And that's from like - not that long ago. Like 10, 15K years ago. I wouldn't even call this 'Ancient History' because IMO that's not that long ago.

Should say - I just like to read about these things, I don't have any 'formal study'.

But from what I have read - "Quasi" "Humans may go back as far as 200K to 1M years?

So what seems odd to me is - there were these 'Cave Drawings' that would point to 'cave men' - and that was apx 10K years ago - but then then within a short time - there were 'advanced civilizations' - close enough - such as Sumer, Assyria, etc.

So they were dirt eating knuckle draggers for a loooong time - but all of a sudden created complex societies?

Same elsewhere. Here, US, N and S America. So there were these 'Clovis People' (sim time frame) - apx 10 to 15K years ago ~

But then not long after there were Incas, and Mayans, and Aztecs, and the Native Peoples farther N who all built complex societies.

That fast?

And they all seem to have 'Flood Stories' - world wide.

So this is my idea - these 'Cave Painters' and 'Basic Hunters', any where - these were not what people had 'evolved to' - they were remnants, those who survived - some cataclysm. They had to be the descendants of - some past civilizations - that collapsed.

If you just got here - you'd not know any past tales, right? And look at how fast they advanced 'civilization' ~
They had to know 'the basics'.

Thinking of these things gave me some ideas on more History I can read up on thumbs up I have some vague knowledge on most of it. Thinking about these things gave me the idea to read more about the indigenous people in 'The Americas' -

I found this -

Lots of interesting stuff here. And in these parts - I guess "The Flood" came from Lake Superior.

Something happened ~
10 - 20K years ago.
Some people decided to turn it into a "Biblical Event" - of the Punishment! sort.

Another idea I had - WHAT is with the 'snakes' and 'serpents'? This seems to pop up world wide ~

IMO snakes are BLAH. This is not an overly fearsome creature, few are poisonous, and humans are much bigger. Why snakes?

From things like this -

To this -

To snakes in "The Bible".

Why snakes?

Plenty of other - MORE - fearsome creatures out there!

So this made me think - were these people trying to "point at" something? Were they using symbolism to - try to explain something else?

Most of the recent were skilled at Astronomy too. Which is somewhat fixed and could be used as 'something to point at'.

Are they trying to tell us that 'something happened' - in conjunction with some other thing (Astronomical Event) (Or - ? ) That is associated with snakes / serpents?

Why not a Bear? Or a Lion? Snakes / Serpents seem to figure into much Mythology, world wide.


And is this meant to 'symbolize' - something else?
Re: The hell...? (religion) :wtf
January 10, 2016
Maybe you only like examining the cornucopia of beliefs, but you seem naturally curious, with a lot of questions.

The answers you're looking for will ultimately be decided by you, actually- most worldviews and historical accounts, spiritual or otherwise, have the parallels you mentioned (floods, serpents...)
Which appeals to you, and why? What is really most important to you? What will make you enamored with any particular answer, therefore, making you accept it? Because you will receive many, no matter who you ask.

I'm not the scholarly sort, but for your history fetish, try The Discovery Channel or The History Channel. Then you'll at least get some quality control.
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