The Sorrows of Young Werewolf (eyeteeth) wrote,
The Sorrows of Young Werewolf

It's a whale minyan!

I have to edit more so I won't say much this time but the last time Jonah mentioned God's holy temple (it was "thy holy temple" last time and it's "thine holy temple" this time, the letter h has proven confusing in this way for centuries and perhaps millennia) I illustrated the phrase with a breaching killer whale. This time I wanted to do the same, because breaching brings the whale closer to God, but then I got to thinking, how would whales worship, anyway? It seems clear that they would do this in part by spyhopping, which is what they're doing in panel two. Whales spyhop to get a look at what's going on on the surface and to see if maybe there are tasty seals around, but it looks quite prayerful. It's like the weird dance my white rat Melissa used to do, when she'd slowly rise to her hind legs and begin to sway back and forth. It turns out white rats do this because they can barely see and it enables them to use parallax to get a rough idea of the distance of surrounding objects, but they appear to be worshipping some kind of rat god, especially when you don't know the sciencey explanation and you find them doing it at three in the morning.

It occurred to me recently that Jonah is the only Hebrew in this whole book. The sailors are foreigners and the Ninevites, to whom Jonah is to preach, are in what is now Iraq; they aren't Jews, though I imagine they worship the same God or he wouldn't bother with them. And something we'll learn later is that Jonah rejected God's commands because he didn't want the Ninevites to be saved. So one of the things this book teaches is that it's not OK to treat people like crap just because they're different from you, and that if you don't show them kindness you're going to end up inside a fish and then won't you feel silly. Yes! You will! And the prayerful whales of panel two are another rebuke to Jonah because see even whales worship better than you, and as you can see they do not defy God: when God says to swallow a prophet they don't try to swim to Tarshish to get out of it. And if a whale is better to you than you are to other humans, and if its conduct pleases God more than yours does, it's time to rethink the choices you've made in life. Think about them for three days and three nights in this fish. It's a Chosen People time-out for Jonah.

Marginally related: today I saw a good thing, which was a pigeon attacking a hawk. The hawk was circling and the pigeon was dive-bombing it. Probably the hawk was hovering over her nest and the chicks inside. I think she won, too, because after a while I saw the two birds fly off in opposite directions. Hooray for the brave little dove!
Tags: animals, melissa, pigeons, rats, stix, the bible, the book of jonah
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