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I've been reading the writings of Josephus (Jewish historian from the first century A.D.) and these writings piqued my interest in the Bible once again.

Readers are advised not to think too literally when it comes to dragons and such (this is not a western book - it is an eastern book full of eastern symbolism). In fact I recommend you read along with a commentary as you study. And a study it is.

For example, Ecclesiastes is a fantastic complement to many of the philosophies manifest in modern Buddhist texts. Take this verse:

"Therefore remove sorrow from thy heart, and put away evil from thy flesh: for childhood and youth are vanity."

The equation of evil with vanity is really a key to moving from childhood to adulthood. In other words, we stop acting like children (live less selfishly, act less out of jealousy, etc.) so that we can live a more fulfilling life. This is one small key to feeling like we really *are* progressing in life.

What the coming of Jesus Christ adds to this is the promise of overcoming physical death ("oh death, where is thy sting?") through his resurrection, and of overcoming spiritual death (mistakes, misdeeds) through his work of atonement. We learn that man is not perfect, nor need he be to achieve happiness in his life.

While the simpler, more "self help"-like verses of the Bible are easy to swallow in small chunks and go down quite easy, a full study of the book is rewarded with a more general consciousness of the purpose of our life and the promise of an eventual reconciliation that takes into account our troubles, sorrows, mistakes, achievements and aspirations.

"To this end was I born" -Jesus Christ
04/25/2008
Victoria M. Patton - A Secret That Will Rip a Tight-Knit Community Apart
FEATURED AUTHOR - If Victoria M. Patton isn't using her Forensic Chemistry degree and her time in the Coast Guard to figure out where to bury the bodies and write about the murders, she is more than likely hanging with her husband, her two dogs, and two cats. Her teenagers want nothing to do with her. If she has any free time, she binge-watches Hulu and YouTubeTV, usually with a glass of whiskey. Check out her blog Whiskey and Writing where she tries to help new authors navigate the indie publishing world. As… Read more