Geological lessons from Easter and Passover

By Daniel Collins 06/04/2010

We’ve all heard the lessons from Easter Island: population growth and a consumer culture butting heads with a finite island. But what teachable moments were there from Easter itself, or from Passover for that matter?

I can see a geology teacher and father taking a frozen Cadbury creme egg, slicing a quarter out of it, and showing his kid the Earth’s structure: chocolate crust, white gooey mantle, and molten caramel core.

To complement the creme egg, common matza come in very handy to the rheological rabbi. Held vertically, their parallel structure depicts the sequential deposits of water and glacial flour.

As for parables, the story of Jesus’ burial on Good Friday and rising on Easter Sunday lends itself well to tale of sedimentary deposit, burial, and subsequent orogenesis, with the newly-risen reaching to the heavens.

And for the 10th plague of Pharaoh’s Egypt, the red of the lamb’s blood illustrates the resilience of iron-containing sedimentary rocks. Banded iron formations are among the oldest known rock formations.

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