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4 Monotheistic Religious Interpretations Countries with substantial populations of Christians and Muslims follow a monotheistic tradition derived from the Jews and their scriptures, the Old Testament or Hebrew Bible. Sex determination of humans is introduced in the book of Genesis as two separate events: Adam is first created as a male and later given a female companion, Eve, derived from his rib. The first strange feature of this separate creation of the two human sexes is that it occurs after the creation of sea, air, and land animals. These creatures are created in an unspecified number and commanded to multiply their kind. By implication, male and female representatives of these other forms of life were created without comment about their having two sexes, as were species that produced their progeny by parthenogenesis , budding (or other cloning mechanism), multiple mating types (e.g., paramecia), or hermaphroditic mutual gametic exchange (e.g., earthworms and snails). The second unusual feature of the Genesis account is the creation of a female, Eve, presumably having a 46,XX chromosomal composition from the rib of Adam, presumably having a 46,XY chromosomal composition. Barring some miraculous act and assuming the Creator was using an XY mechanism for sex determination, the rib would have had to contain this 46,XX tissue. This would mean that Adam was some sort of chromosomal mosaic (or chimera, if the XX tissue was some type of embedded twin), with a region of his body (the rib area used for Eve) containing a karyotype that required two separate, nondisjunctional events to bring about. If one attributes miraculous acts for this formation of Eve, why was the rib necessary? If the human female has 20 her origin as a second sex from Adam, the chromosome difference has to be reconciled (at least for those calling themselves “Creationist scientists ”). One such possibility would be the lagging of the Y shifting a cell to 45,X, followed by a delayed separation of chromatids of the X producing the 46,XX cell from which the rib area was derived. The two X chromosomes would necessarily be identical in nucleotide sequence (except for a few new spontaneous mutations).1 Note the coincidence (or possible association) between the hermaphroditic nature of Adam before Eve is extracted from his rib, and the Greek myth cited by Plato in The Symposium, where heterosexual couples were produced from an initially hermaphroditic state. ThereisasecondepisodeinGenesiswheresexdeterminationplaysa role. In the story of Noah’s ark, the ark is built large enough (something akin to a tourist liner) to accommodate two of each of the “kinds” (species ) of animals of the earth. By implication (walking up a gangplank to the ark) these are land animals. Presumably, the birds (one pair per species) would fly to the ark after the flood covered other roosting spots. Speciesthatlivedintheseawouldhaveremainedintheirniches,savefor barnacles and other attachments to the ark. Land animals like worms, most insects, and other small creatures of a microscopic size or very small and thus difficult to find, would have escaped extinction by surviving on floating debris after the flood or would have hitchhiked a ride by being carried by one of the animals that did get across the gangplank to the ark (certainly the intestinal and other body parasites would have accompaniedthoseenteringviagangplank).Leavingasidetheproblems ofdietsforeachofthespeciesonboardandhowtheywouldbefed,there is a problem of selecting two individuals, one being male and the other female for each species. How did Noah and his relatives identify what was male and what was female among the numerous (perhaps millions or at the least many tens of thousands) of non-microscopic species that aboundonearthindifferentcontinents?Thestressonatwo-by-twoprocession of animals entering the ark creates an image of the universality of two sexes, one male and one female, for all of life. Because there exist species associated with hermaphroditism, cloning, and multiple mating types, the failure to mention these forms of reproduction suggests that they were unknown to the authors of the Noachian flood. If there had Monotheistic Religious Interpretations 21 been recognition, at the time of the writing of these scriptures, of hermaphroditismfrombirthsofinfantswhomanifestedtheircontradictory sexual traits as adults, they would have been restricted to some sort of pathology and not to an actual mode of reproduction for some animal species. Talmudic scholars cite the time of ejaculation as sex determining; if the female emits her semen first she bears a son. If a couple desires a son, then the male must learn to delay orgasm until the female has experienced its equivalent first. Semen is specifically mentioned in the...


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