COVID-19 is a pandemic caused by zoonosis–the transmission of a coronavirus from an animal or animals to humans and perhaps vice versa. There is still some uncertainty about how COVID-19 started. The prevailing view among epidemiologists and other medical experts is still that it originated in China and that it was transmitted from bats to people with the possibility of an intermediary animal being involved as a reservoir, and if so it likely was a pangolin.
In my book, Moses Predicted COVID-19 (yes, I admit it’s an ambitious title), I show that the last nine coronavirus pandemics, starting with the Spanish Flu of 1918, occurred due to zoonosis and that the type of animals that generally have been believed to have been the origin of these diseases are what Moses declared in his food laws in Leviticus 11 and Deuteronomy 14 in the Jewish Bible (Old Testament) as “unclean” and therefore forbidden to be eaten. Most well known among this category are pigs. That is why religious Jews do not eat pork and therefore try to eat what they call “kosher.” I therefore suspect that Moses’ food laws are prescient in their value and that all of these nine pandemics being caused by unclean animals indicates as much.
Moses’ criterion for deciding which animals are “clean,” and therefore many be eaten, and which animals are “unclean” are two in number. Clean animals are those that both split the hoof and chew the cud. Animals that meet these criteria include cattle, sheep, goats, and deer. And notice that they are not carnivorous. Most animals that Moses designates “unclean” are wild animals that are carnivorous, though not all are.
In my book, I do not advise that we all eat kosher, though I believe that would be healthy since I think these laws have a hygienic element, which has been debated for millennia. However, I suggest that the world take notice of these Mosaic food laws by allowing those unclean, wild animals to have their space in order to try to avoid zoonosis or at least reduce it.
The National Geographic magazine had an online article yesterday entitled “COVID-19 is more widespread in animals than we thought.” This article lists many animals in which the virus, SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19, resides due to detection of antibodies in them. Of all the animals mentioned, only one splits the hoof and chews the cud, which are deer (both mule deer and white-tailed deer).
The article quotes an ecologist professor, Joseph Hoyt of Virginia Tech, saying of SARS-CoV-2, “I think the spread to wildlife animals is much wider than previously thought.” It is believed that the two wild animals that harbor this coronavirus as much or more than others are bats and mink, with many cases of the latter dying from it. Hoyt also says of COVID-19, “We don’t know the consequences of this for wildlife. That another aspect that has been largely ignored.” I suspect this needs to be studied more and with Moses’ food laws in mind.