So, we come at last to the ur-text of Western Literature, the Bible itself. I’ve managed to cover an extremely broad range of books and shows in my chronological threads to this point. I’ve taken a look at The X-Files, the history of Middle Earth, Indiana Jones, Star Wars, Batman and more (practically all those threads are on hiatus, me being a huge slacker). But this, I think, will be something different. My posting style has always been loose and unpretentious; will the Bible unfold for such a slapdash approach as mine? Should a central religious text really be talked about like this? We’ll find out.
I’m also breaking new ground for myself. God knows (he he he I . . . uh, no pun intended) that people have felt strongly about the things I’ve previously written about, be it the Star Wars series or The X-Files or Batman. But is there anything on this planet that so many people feel so strongly about as the Bible? I’ll be writing about some very serious issues; whether you’re a Bible Belt Bible thumper or an East Coast atheist, the issues surrounding religion, faith and belief are of central importance to you. The Bible is a book that purports to wrestle with the biggest questions of human existence: what are we? Who are we? Is there a God? What are we to God? What is our purpose? What is life?
So I find that I will be finding plenty to be incredibly serious about as well as to be, hopefully, witty and funny about. But even here we come to a central question: how should the Bible be read? And, more importantly, thought about? Should this project be an attempt to parse things like historical accuracy, higher criticism, the dating of the books? Should it be an attempt to look at the basic teachings of the Bible and trace them through to our various religions today? Should it be a look at the aesthetic power and beauty of the language and the style? Is the Bible to be looked at here as a work of art or a foundational text of religion? I suppose, in the end, it has to be all of those things at once. Just as the book itself is intricately bound up in many aspects of modern existence, so we must look at it through as many lenses as possible at once.Here’s both a thank you to someone who’s been a big help leading up to this and a sort of inspirational statement about our shared humanity. The wonderful banner above has been created by Nile Zegg. He’s helped me out with banners before, mostly of the “using preexisting elements” variety. But when I approached him about this project, he said that he wanted to create the entire thing from scratch, purely his personal drawing. I’m blown away by the talent on display in the banners. I initially approached him for one banner for the entire project; he balked at this too, saying that he really wanted to do a totally different banner for each book in the Bible!
Now that’s impressive and I can’t wait to see what he comes up with for all those different banners! That’s the “thank you” part. The inspirational part? Well, I’m a Middle American Christian; Nile Zegg is a European Agnostic Atheist. And we’re collaborating on a thread about the Bible. Does it get more awesome than that? It’s things like this kind of collaboration across philosophical worldviews that reaffirms my faith in humanity. It’s a pretty small thing, just a project on the internet, but it still warms the heart.
But now, on with the project. It should stand as obvious that I don’t feel even remotely up to this. But I think we’ll have fun, maybe have some serious discussions, maybe find out more about ourselves and each other and learn more about one of the greatest texts of literature ever created.
First, I'll list the posts in chronological order by title; then, below that, you can find the posts broken up by books, should you be looking for a particular passage.