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Surpassing Wonder: The Invention of the Bible and the Talmuds

Surpassing Wonder The Invention of the Bible and the Talmuds With wit elegance and clarity Surpassing Wonder illuminates the ancient Hebrew scriptures the Christian New Testament and the Talmuds of the Rabbis by showing who wrote them under what circumst

  • Title: Surpassing Wonder: The Invention of the Bible and the Talmuds
  • Author: Donald Harman Akenson
  • ISBN: 9780151004188
  • Page: 400
  • Format: Hardcover
  • With wit, elegance, and clarity, Surpassing Wonder illuminates the ancient Hebrew scriptures, the Christian New Testament , and the Talmuds of the Rabbis by showing who wrote them, under what circumstances, and why they were given the shape they have These works constitute the very core of our cultural consciousness and in every century have been hidden from us firstWith wit, elegance, and clarity, Surpassing Wonder illuminates the ancient Hebrew scriptures, the Christian New Testament , and the Talmuds of the Rabbis by showing who wrote them, under what circumstances, and why they were given the shape they have These works constitute the very core of our cultural consciousness and in every century have been hidden from us first by priests, then by fundamentalists, and now by narrow scholars.Here, with biting irreverence for prejudice and pretension, Donald Akenson renews our sense of awe before these sacred works by encountering them head on, by setting them in their historical and political context and by daring to speculate that there was one author editor of the Hebrew scriptures, and one for the Christian New Testament, and that the inventor of the Hebrew scriptures should be credited with constructing the very foundations of Western culture He simultaneously restores their spiritual power through a just appreciation of the authors achievement and provides a brilliant expose of how theologians and biblical scholars abuse historical reasoning and evidence in their treatment of the sacred texts.Using images that range from Winnie the Pooh to tractor mechanics, this world renowned historian creates for us a radical reformation of the sacred texts as he breathes new life into our religions and helps us understand, and revere, the heritage that flows from Jerusalem.

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    About "Donald Harman Akenson"

    1. Donald Harman Akenson

      From book The United States and Ireland 1973 Donald Harman Akenson teaches history at Queen s University in Kingston, Ontario He was born in Minneapolis, took his degrees at Yale and Harvard, and taught and held administrative positions at both of those universities He is the author of The Irish Education Experiment 1970 The Church of Ireland 1971 and Education and Enmity The Control of Schooling in Northern Ireland 1973.

    564 Comments

    1. 'm not a Biblical scholar or professional historian, so I'm not sure that I'm a good judge of the worth of a book like this, which is somewhat geared toward the "educated amateur" but deals with historical methods and a tremendous quantity of literature. The subject of the book is the processes that led up to the creation of the main texts of Christianity and Judaism, from the Hebrew Bible up to the Talmuds.One interesting point that he makes is that the thought and writings of Judaism have had [...]


    2. An awesome achievement, truly wonderful book. A humble but hugely accomplished study of the invention of the Bible and The Talmuds and answers why they were so influential. As foundational books of western culture this book and Christianity the First three thousand years show how the contributions of ideas from our shared history lead to the culture we share today. From the Hebrews, Greeks,Egyptions, Romans and the rest of our ancestors. Also discusses how new ideas get imported from all culture [...]


    3. Biblical scholarship spent much of the 20th century atomizing the text into the smallest bits of usable data. This book is a representative example of the next step in Biblical scholarship, taking all of these myriad bits of knowledge and synthesizing them into an accessible body of knowledge. Donald Akenson presents a thoroughgoing set of arguments on the origins and development of these texts. He presents a great deal of material and demonstrates using a wide variety of solid sources. 1)This i [...]


    4. Akenson's book does a magnificent job of outlining the historical relevance of the foundational texts and the socio-political atmosphere on the creation of two new sister religions. Christianity and Rabbinical Judaism. Daughter religions of what he refers to as Judahism. Akenson does an admirable job of bringing to life a dry and arid topic.Be warned that there are still several long dry spells which I foundmyself quickly skimming. Three chapters of Mishnah were more than enough for the non-rabb [...]


    5. An amazing achievement, assessing a huge body of evidence from the primary texts and presenting a synthesis with wit and erudition. You don't have to buy into all his conclusions (for example, I wasn't convinced that the final Christian canon was quite as purposefully designed as he suggests) to gain an enormous amount of knowledge and to appreciate the real questions which need to be asked, and the methods that can and cannot be used legitimately. His Appendix demolishing many of the methods of [...]


    6. IF you really, really want to know how the bible(s) were created this is the dry book that will go over every little bit for you. Harmon Akenson give a very detailed explanation of everything from the 5 books of Moses, the Talmud, the new Testament and old Testament. He also gives great insight into what social, cultural or even political forces that gave rise to poetry in Psalms to Armageddon in Revelations. It is big and dry and uses big words, but is a good source for lively cocktail party ar [...]


    7. If you were a Christian and at some point but stopped being a Christian, then fucking read this book you god damned dissenter. It will stop you from hating yourself so much for disbelieving the bible And yet allow you to still sorta love the bible. Imagine that!


    8. If you are interested in how the bible got to be written, non-theologically, this is a wonderful, fascinating, beautifully written book.


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