Tuesday, February 23, 2016

About Reading Things In A Deeper Context - The Vitally Important To The Merely Interesting

A while ago I recommended Walter Brueggemann's book, The Bible Makes Sense, noting that, though it is a thin book it was a curriculum for studying the scriptures.   I'd read through it once with the intention of really going through it as a curriculum and have to say that it is a far, far deeper and more involved course of study than I'd appreciated, then.  The surface meaning, such as you can take from even the modern English easy-read translations of the Bible, is frequently misleading and deceptive.  These texts were not written within our modern contexts and when they are subjected to a fundamentalist reading their meaning is not only destroyed but a reductionist "meaning" is substituted that discredits them.   The ongoing experience of following Brueggemann's course, reading all of the passages in several translations - something you can do so much more easily on the various internet sources than with paper based books - leaves me feeling that even at that it's just dealing with things on a surface level.  The Bible, the collection of books was spoken and/or written by people who probably had no idea they were contributing to a collection assembled by those who preserved and elevated those writings which were later compiled into that anthology.  It is a record of both particular and general experience and inspiration which pulses and vibrates with implications for us today but which is most reliably used when making a deep reading of the texts.   But behind it there has to be a moral purpose which is based in the egalitarian formula found in Leviticus 19:18 which both Hillel and Jesus extended and noted noted was the substance of "the law and the prophets.   Without that as a foundation, without that as the constant guide through the study, the whole thing goes to hell.


Speaking of understanding old texts on a deeper level, I am finding that reading "the bad plays" "Baconically" instead of in the Stratfordian vacuum does, actually, lead to them having meaning which is far clearer. And I'm just at the very beginning of that process.  I will write about applying that to one of the plays later.

If the works would play better that way, I'm not an actor, I don't know.  In following up on this hobby and diversion,  I was interested to hear what the fine actor, Mark Rylance, former artistic director of Shakespeare's Globe, had to say about finding a deeper meaning in the plays by studying Bacon.


And that led me back to the actor and scholar of the issue and the theater, Kier Cutler, has said about more recent developments in the issue.   Long time readers of my blog will note what he says about the entirely fictitious fervently believed in "bio pic" and historical abomination,  "Shakespeare in Love" as tacitly endorsed by the Stratfordian establishment.

I will confess that when I started on this it was just because, reviewing the rotted gauze out of which the "Shakespeare" idol has been constructed, I was amused and fascinated by how the required, mandated belief in it, clearly motivated by the local industry of Shakespeare, inc. in Britain, a lucrative line of nonsense, was so firmly established in official academia and official culture.  Going into it deeper shows that there is a lot more to it than that.  

If the idiots who troll me hadn't let me know how enraged they are by the issue, I'd probably never have written about it more than once.

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