Tuesday, February 17, 2009

The Year of Living Biblically and The Shack

I actually finished The Year of Living Biblically awhile ago but it has taken me this long to figure out I'll never be able to fully understand my own thoughts about God enough to speak coherently about the subject. On the one hand, what a great story the bible is, full of mystery and magic and intrigue and, in some spots fire and brimstone and in others love and forgiveness. On the other hand, it's a mess with weird rules and very little of the tolerance I've come to expect from those of the Christian faith. I wish I was a gifted enough writer to take a year and live according to the bible's rules so I could record the experience from the female perspective. 

Believe me, life would be much easier if I was one of the religious majority. Certainly fewer people would immediately condemn me to Hell upon learning of my belief deficit. Also, folks wouldn't peg me as a soulless, immoral, jerk off with no values who does whatever I want because nothing holds me in check.
I'm open to the possibility of God but I have to say for God to get its message across to me, its going to have to do some fancy footwork because the bible just does not cut it. For me at least. So, yeah, back to the book. Not that book, the other one. It's informative. My favorite part is when Jacobs's wife sits on every chair in the house while menstruating so that Jacobs can't sit anywhere. For those who don't already know, when we women menstruate, we're impure and men are pretty much supposed to stay clear of us for seven days.
Anyway, there is more I want to say but I am still unable to gather my thoughts and I've really kept this book hostage long enough from the kind folks at The Wagners Five who lent it to me. I'll switch to the book I just finished, The Shack. It was a book, I can tell you that. I read it so words were involved. The one thing I did like was this idea that we're all interconnected. To the extent that when you see someone you love, these colors and light shoot off of you and wrap around that person. And then when you see someone else you love, since that love cannot be the exact same love as the previous person, new colors and light envelop that person, and so on and so forth. We can't see these colors, of course, but they are there, wrapping around the people we love. I like love.
The conclusion, read The Year of Living Biblically. Don't bother with The Shack. No real surprises here.

1 comment:

Andrew said...

I thought that A Year of Living Biblically demonstrated a lot of what is good and bad about religion. On the one hand, you have the people interpreting the Bible in such a way that they inject weirdness and oppression into everyone's lives. On the other, you have the people who interpret it in such a way that it enriches lives and gives people peace and perspective.

But to me, it just points out that religion is all interpretation. If everyone had the happy, forgiveness view of religion, I wouldn't have a problem with religion. But they don't, and there's no definitive authority out there saying, "This is what it really means". Or rather, there are billions of those authorities, all saying something different. So really, if any interpretation is just as valid as any other interpretation, isn't your religion more of a reflection on you than on any deity?