A Deep Red Gold
Tarbari has warmed to the subject. David can’t stop grinning.
"The word you just said: Amen. In my country, Amun was the name of the king of all gods. Amun was also known as Amen, so each time a Christian says ’amen’ he is calling the name of the ancient sun god.”
"Amun-Ra," David says.
"Very good, yes. The sun god. Are you familiar with Egyptian history?"
"Same as anybody else."
"This means you’re sadly lacking in knowledge about the origins of even your New Testament, which was written in Greek by Hellenistic Jews."
"Hey, Greek mythology I know. Zeus and Poseidon and that Hydra thing."
"Mythology, you say? Christians hold that a man could survive inside the belly of a whale, but these same people call the stories of Heracles feats only myths."
"Yeah, no way could that crazy Medusa shit be true, but a snake in a tree or a talking burning bush?"
"The Bible is allegorical," Tarbari insists, "meant to be deciphered by enlightened minds."
David reclines on his bunk again. "That’s enough religion for one night, Anwar. Buy me some waffles in the morning and I’ll let you tell me what the hell those fezzes are all about."
Tarbari thrums the bars with one hand then goes to his own bunk and lies down.
"Tomorrow I may teach you the meaning of my real name."
- S.K. Epperson, April 2012
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