As was foretold, we've added advertisements to the forums! If you have questions, or if you encounter any bugs, please visit this thread: https://forums.penny-arcade.com/discussion/240191/forum-advertisement-faq-and-reports-thread/
Options

Composing a Bible

SpeakerSpeaker Registered User regular
edited January 2009 in Debate and/or Discourse
I had a history teacher in high school who had attended the Harvard Seminary. While he was there a teacher of his once told him that everyone tends to compose their own bible. The scripture that they find resonates with them because of their own peculiar character and circumstances gets read and re-read and stands in the bright light of their attention - the rest falls back into shadow.

Many people here are agnostic, post-religious, a-religious, but I think as our lives as literate people go on many of us find poems, short essays, speeches and stories that become a part of our own personal bible. Works that we carry with us and return to again and again for instruction and inspiration.

So this thread is to try to bring together for ourselves the sort of personal mix tape of our own bibles and share it, as though we were each going to compile an actual book to be published.

Or maybe I'm the only one that does this and the thread will die a brief, thrashing death.

This isn't complete because the idea has only just occurred to me, but to make a start:

The Speaker Bible:

If
The Enchiridion
The Dhammapada
The Mending Wall
The Tuft of Flowers
The Inner Ring
Character of the Happy Warrior
The Night Abraham Called to the Stars
The Meditations
Solitude

Speaker on

Posts

  • Options
    QinguQingu Registered User regular
    edited January 2009
    I submit the Nasadiya creation hymn from the Rig Veda, or at least the end of it.

    Who really knows?
    Who will here proclaim it?
    Whence was it produced?
    Whence is this creation?
    The gods came afterwards, with the creation of this universe.
    Who then knows whence it has arisen?

    Whence this creation has arisen—
    Perhaps it formed itself, or perhaps it did not—
    the One who looks down on it,
    in the highest heaven, only He knows
    or perhaps He does not know.

    Qingu on
  • Options
    Inquisitor77Inquisitor77 2 x Penny Arcade Fight Club Champion A fixed point in space and timeRegistered User regular
    edited January 2009
    I'm actually not much of a poetry fan, but I will submit two:


    If, by Rudyard Kipling



    Tao Te Ching, Chapter 74
    If men are not afraid to die,
    It is of no avail to threaten them with death.

    If men live in constant fear of dying,
    And if breaking the law means that a man will be killed,
    Who will dare to break the law?

    There is always an official executioner.
    If you try to take his place,
    It is like trying to be a master carpenter and cutting wood.
    If you try to cut wood like a master carpenter,
    you will only hurt your hand.

    Inquisitor77 on
  • Options
    musanmanmusanman Registered User regular
    edited January 2009
    I've gotten a lot out of re-reading the Art of War, but I'm not sure how it fits in.

    musanman on
    sic2sig.jpg
  • Options
    Raiden333Raiden333 Registered User regular
    edited January 2009
    My favorite passage from the Principia Discordia:

    A SERMON ON ETHICS AND LOVE

    One day Mal-2 asked the messenger spirit Saint Gulik to approach the Goddess and request Her presence for some desperate advice. Shortly afterwards the radio came on by itself, and an ethereal female Voice said YES?

    "O! Eris! Blessed Mother of Man! Queen of Chaos! Daughter of Discord! Concubine of Confusion! O! Exquisite Lady, I beseech You to lift a heavy burden from my heart!"

    WHAT BOTHERS YOU, MAL? YOU DON'T SOUND WELL.

    "I am filled with fear and tormented with terrible visions of pain. Everywhere people are hurting one another, the planet is rampant with injustices, whole societies plunder groups of their own people, mothers imprison sons, children perish while brothers war. O, woe."

    WHAT IS THE MATTER WITH THAT, IF IT IS WHAT YOU WANT TO DO?

    "But nobody wants it! Everybody hates it."

    OH. WELL, THEN STOP.

    At which moment She turned herself into an aspirin commercial and left The Polyfather stranded alone with his species.

    Raiden333 on
    There was a steam sig here. It's gone now.
  • Options
    Wonder_HippieWonder_Hippie __BANNED USERS regular
    edited January 2009
    I'm actually not much of a poetry fan, but I will submit two:


    If, by Rudyard Kipling



    Tao Te Ching, Chapter 74
    If men are not afraid to die,
    It is of no avail to threaten them with death.

    If men live in constant fear of dying,
    And if breaking the law means that a man will be killed,
    Who will dare to break the law?

    There is always an official executioner.
    If you try to take his place,
    It is like trying to be a master carpenter and cutting wood.
    If you try to cut wood like a master carpenter,
    you will only hurt your hand.

    Along these same lines, Teusdays With Morrie honestly helped me deal with the idea of death. The song Here, There, and Everywhere heavily shaped my ideas of what realistic, absolute love could feel like.

    Wonder_Hippie on
  • Options
    Beren39Beren39 Registered User regular
    edited January 2009
    I've always been an admirer of the works of Lord Alfred Tennyson and I find that the latter portion of the poem Ulysses inspires in me a sense of adventure and immortality, that nothing is impossible, failure is temporary, and old age, while inevitable, is not an end to the pursuit of ambition. I think it will have even more meaning to me in my later years when youthful exploits are a somewhat distant memory, it always reminds me I have a lot more living to do at the tender age of 19, and a bright future awaits.
    Come, my friends,
    'Tis not too late to seek a newer world.
    Push off, and sitting well in order smite
    The sounding furrows; for my purpose holds
    To sail beyond the sunset, and the baths
    Of all the western stars, until I die.
    It may be that the gulfs will wash us down:
    It may be we shall touch the Happy Isles,
    And see the great Achilles, whom we knew.
    Though much is taken, much abides; and though
    We are not now that strength which in old days
    Moved earth and heaven; that which we are, we are;
    One equal temper of heroic hearts,
    Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will
    To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.

    Beren39 on
    Go, Go, EXCALIBUR! - Trent Varsity Swim Team 2009, better watch out for me Phelps!
    camo_sig.png
  • Options
    EmperorSethEmperorSeth Registered User regular
    edited January 2009
    I've written a timeline and index/reference guide to most of my video game and other ideas. Collectively, these files are over 500 pages long. Would that count? Otherwise...I'm more of a visual thinker, so probably a lot more Buffy and video game references.

    EmperorSeth on
    You know what? Nanowrimo's cancelled on account of the world is stupid.
  • Options
    HachfaceHachface Not the Minister Farrakhan you're thinking of Dammit, Shepard!Registered User regular
    edited January 2009
    One of my favorite passages in world literature actually does come from the Bible:

    I have seen something else under the sun:
    The race is not to the swift
    or the battle to the strong,
    nor does food come to the wise
    or wealth to the brilliant
    or favor to the learned;
    but time and chance happen to them all.
    Ecclesiastes 9:11

    It both keeps me humble and prevents me from being envious.

    Hachface on
  • Options
    SolventSolvent Econ-artist กรุงเทพมหานครRegistered User regular
    edited January 2009
    I've always really liked Desiderata. I first read it on a plaque that my Grandfather owns.

    Although I certainly wouldn't add the entirety of The Prince to my personal bible, it does contain one of my favourite quotes, which I think teaches the pragmatism for which I'm known (by some people):
    "The fact is that a man who wants only to live virtuously necessarily comes to grief among so many who are not virtuous".

    Solvent on
    I don't know where he got the scorpions, or how he got them into my mattress.

    http://newnations.bandcamp.com
  • Options
    Matt_SMatt_S Registered User regular
    edited January 2009
    One piece of poetry which has always been with me has been <i>Dulce Et Decorum Est</i> by Wilfred Owens. I am not even sure how it has affected me -- I'm not particularly pacifistic, and I've never been much of a warhawk. But every time I read it, something about it strikes me.
    Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
    Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
    Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs
    And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
    Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots
    But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame; all blind;
    Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
    Of disappointed shells that dropped behind.

    GAS! Gas! Quick, boys!-- An ecstasy of fumbling,
    Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time;
    But someone still was yelling out and stumbling
    And floundering like a man in fire or lime.--
    Dim, through the misty panes and thick green light
    As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.

    In all my dreams, before my helpless sight,
    He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.

    If in some smothering dreams you too could pace
    Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
    And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
    His hanging face, like a devil's sick of sin;
    If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
    Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs,
    Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud
    Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,--
    My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
    To children ardent for some desperate glory,
    The old Lie: Dulce et decorum est
    Pro patria mori.

    Matt_S on
Sign In or Register to comment.