A few years ago I was in a discussion with one of the more intelligent people I have had the pleasure to meet: a Ph.D. philosophy student at the University of Cambridge. Substantial parts of his thesis had to consist of original philosophical ideas, and this meant a large portion of his ‘revision’ consisted of bringing disparate thoughts together into one unified theory: essentially, sitting and thinking.
I asked what he thought the essential, must-read philosophy texts were: those texts that any self-respecting philosopher must have read? Without hesitation he gave me the first: “Regardless of religious affiliation—or absence thereof—the Bible.”
To help me on my journey of enlightenment (philosophical, not religious) Slate’s David Plotz has now finished his latest series: the complete blogging the Bible.
There are experts to tell you why the Bible is literally true, others to advise you how to analyze it as history, and still others to help you read it as literature. You can learn how to approach it as a Jew, a Catholic, an evangelical Protestant, a feminist, a lawyer, a teenager.
So, what can I possibly do? My goal is pretty simple. I want to find out what happens when an ignorant person actually reads [the Bible].