As I continue to share my summaries on my Septuagint (LXX) studies, I have come to realize how much I am assuming you know, and have concluded that that amount is too much.
First, this is my blog. I’m doing my best, but my aim is not much greater than sharing a curiosity of mine in an enjoyable way. Here are three books you need to read if you want to know more. Links to a certain, large online retailer are here, here, and here.
Now, let’s announce the problem. Well, it’s not a problem, it’s just life. I’ll just call it the intrigue. Here’s the intrigue. For protestants, our Old Testament is based on the Hebrew text known as the Masoretic Text. This text dates about one thousand years ago (all dates are debatable) to the 10th century A.D. Now, the Septuagint–the name for the Greek translations of the Hebrew Scriptures–is dated to 250 B.C. Naturally, that’s quite a bit earlier (1250 years). Everyone knows that the Septuagint is a translation. But we don’t have the text that it was translated from, so we call what we don’t have the parent text, or Vorlage (4-log-eyh if you’re cool). The Vorlage is what we hope to find. See the complexity?
Put another way, we have the translation (LXX) and know it is a translation–there is no dispute here at all. But we do not have the original (Vorlage). Then 1000 years later we have what is presumably the original, but cannot possibly be for at least 1000 reasons. And “no” the MT is not some weird and late translation of the LXX into Hebrew. The contents of the MT (Mastoretic Text) and LXX are close, but obviously not equivalent–no translation is. So what did the LXX translators have? That’s our question. Now you know.
To me, this is fascinating and enjoyable to pursue. Overall, though, it has nothing to do with blood. Ink on paper is not the blood of our Savior. Never forget this obvious truth.
The fact remains that in the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead our heavenly Father “rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together. He is also head of the body, the church; and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything. For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him, and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself, having made peace through the blood of His cross; through Him, I say, whether things on earth or things in heaven.“
We now pause our regularly scheduled programming (three more Cain and Abel re-writes on their way) to bring you some of Robert Louis Stevenson’s best sentences.
From Treasure Island
Silver was roundly accused of playing double–of trying to make a separate peace for himself, of sacrificing the interests of his accomplices and victims, and, in one word, of the identical, exact thing that he was doing.
From Prince Otto
(This first one hits strikingly close to home–perhaps ol’ Bob stumbled upon Ecclesiastes?)
Do you not know that you are touching, with lay hands, the very holiest inwards of philosophy, where madness dwells? Ay, Otto, madness; for in the serene temples of the wise, the inmost shrine, which we carefully keep locked, is full of spiders’ webs. All men, all, are fundamentally useless; nature tolerates, she does not need, she does not use them: sterile flowers!
And this one (Prince Otto, too) persuades whatever inner-workings lie behind the long development of some men’s seemingly hard, dark faces to rush to just beneath the surface the brightest and rosiest hues of red.
There is nothing that so apes the external bearing of free will as that unconscious bustle, obscurely following liquid laws, with which a river contends among obstructions.
These two movies had piqued my interest when I first heard of them, but the mainstream critical reception was off-putting enough that I hadn’t take the time to view them. Finally I had a minute. The critics are wrong.
If you liked Miami Vice and Zero Dark Thirty, then Sicario is for you. My only real problem with Sicario is that it would be ruined if the cartel horrors it depicts were not based in the historical record, but I am too afraid to confirm that they are to do any fact checking. Depressing stuff.
If you have read Moby Dick, then The Heart of the Sea is for you. This one’s reception is especially baffling. Critics can’t say anything good about it, but as far as ocean voyage movies go it is much better than Master and Commander, which wasn’t bad. I loved Moby Dick and so I can’t say how much of that influences my enjoyment of The Heart of the Sea. What I can say is that if you know that Moby Dick is not about a whale, then you’ll like this movie. Conversely, if you are asking yourself, “Moby Dick isn’t about whale?” right now, skip the movie.
Buy it today for $2.99 by clicking here or on the images. And even if you don’t have $2.99 to spare, please, please add a review so that balance is restored to the force.
With a full-time job again, I don’t have time to work, come up with fiction blog posts, and write fiction books. That said, I recently received what I would call the divine inspiration I have been waiting for regarding my next book, so until it is complete, the only posts you’ll likely see will be book/movie reviews or “daughter project” ones. But the new book is going to be great.
One thing I have learned from my two short novels that I hope to put to practice with the new book is that while I was thinking, “Let them test the waters”, the truth is I prefer to settle into a long book if I’m going to read a book at all, and I don’t think I’m alone in that. Whereas my books are similar to a movie’s two-hour run-time, a book differs from a movie in that it is something I want to build a relationship with. So this next book is going to be long. And that makes me smile. And it’s going to have violence and sex just the way you want it. And that should make you smile. Suckers!
I plan on giving it to Glenn of Glenn Hates Books at the end of next week. Please don’t let his review (as awesome as it will be) be the first/only one posted.
“Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”
May God add His blessing to the hearing, reading, and doing of his most holy word.
With Glenn Hates Books: Brutally Honest Book Reviews – Vol. 1 Conley, unbeknownst to him, reveals himself to be a fervent follower of Saint Paul’s advice. In fact, it is difficult to imagine that a critic such as Conley could even exist if it wasn’t for a childhood diet rich in God’s word. The trouble, however, is young Conley (the boy sitting in the pew who couldn’t get phrases such as “Fuck this shit in the ass!” out of his head no matter how hard he tried) thought that this indoctrination was a matter of the mind, when in fact it is a matter of the heart. And then somehow, despite this mass confusion, he became an adult, got a job, and so on and so forth. Which brings us to the present, where Glenn Conley writes book reviews for fun.
Sticking to the timeless advice that is clearly stamped upon his heart, he writes reviews that are true, reviews that are honest, reviews that are just, reviews that are pure. He claims that he writes these reviews because he hates books. But that’s just a silly marketing ploy to get suckers like me to notice him. The truth is that I know of no one who loves books more than Glenn Conley. He tears through them. A friend once labeled me a “word volcano”. Sticking with the naturalistic theme, if that’s the case, Conley is a “word black hole”. Nothing escapes him. He ingests books at a rate of nearly one a day, and also takes time to consider them and report back to the author–and the world–whether the book had any truth to it. And *big surprise* most do not. Well, most of the books that Conley reads anyway.
We’re here, however, to assess his book. Should anyone read it? To do this, we turn again to the words of Saint Paul. In his second letter to the Corinthians, Chapter 4, Verse 17-18, the King James version has recorded:
“For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.”
That is to say, Conley’s book includes swears and graphic depictions–not just depictions, but longings for–rape, incest, and death. So if the temporal, seen world is the only one that matters, then he has contributed no value and his book is a public nuisance. But if we are all awaiting an eternal, unseen world, then his book is hilarious and well-worth reading. (Follow his blog here.) It is best read and appreciated while taking a shit or doing some other activity whose accomplishment is more prudently advanced the more one is distracted from doing it. Just when you think you’ve read all the possible combinations of his “Green Eggs and Ham” sized vocabulary, a fit of uncontrolled laughter signals he knows no bounds.
Lastly, whatever your stance on the time-space universe, keep this book away from literate children.
The biggest reason you should know the answer is “no” is that the book isn’t topping any best seller list.
Lesson learned, okay? After seeing The Divorce and Doom of Simon Pastor not sell, I figured this whole writing books thing was going to be about doing it my way. So I asked my friend, the same one who drew Simon’s cover, to do an oil painting this time. He told me, “Sure, but I don’t usually work with oil.” I replied, “I don’t normally write books. Let’s stretch ourselves.”
I happen to think the painting is great. But I can also admit that formatting it for the book cover took away a little bit, okay a lot, of the greatness. What I will never admit is that two men hugging in a forest are necessarily having sex together that night. Yet nearly everyone that I have talked to in person, not to mention Glenn and one other blogger on his review, have expressed that they expected Buried Within to have something to do with gay men or Brokeback Mountain based on the book cover.
What I really want to say to you all is thank you. For a long time I have feared that it would come out that I’m homophobic. What with my fundamental Christian upbringing, my military background, my having been married and having a child, my love of Michael Mann and Tom Cruise, I mean all these things are classic symptoms of homophobia. But then I heard these rumblings about the book cover and felt an immense swelling of pride. It really is a sign of the times, I think, that you think I have it in me to write a story centered on two gay men. (It also seems like you would prefer to read that book ((which is itself fascinating to me–and noted)) over a simple story of male friendship.)
So thank you.
But, unfortunately for my bank account, Buried Within is an exploration into a pair of men’s hearts that reveals a love that transcends sexuality. It is not about burying anything within anybody–forest or no forest.
Now take your mouse or finger and click here to buy the book. Pick up my other two while you’re there. Do it out of pity. Do it out of the acute feeling of guilt you should have for judging a book by its cover. But do it in any case. And remember, buying a book doesn’t mean you have to read it, neither do you need a Kindle to buy the Kindle version for the low, low price of $1.99.
I have to think he would have at least smirked. But from what I remember being taught about him, he was a very serious, very serious man. So no. Even jokes that I am only able to attempt after his research and ideas have had a century to take root in western society wouldn’t have caused him to laugh.
I love blogging. I love it because it forces interesting questions, questions like this one about Freud, into my head. You see, life is so very easy for a smart, not to mention good-looking, eligible man like me that I need some way to make it challenging. So I write. I try to see if I can make a total stranger laugh in the same way that I can make someone laugh that I’m talking to in person. And here’s the real challenge. I try to see if I can make them laugh for the same reason.
By the way. Please send me a check for, I don’t know, $300, each month from now on to support my quest. Make it payable to Pete Deakon and mail it to PO Box 3392, Parker, CO 80134. Thank you.
A man like me doesn’t just appear. It takes a very special woman years and years, like 18, to mold a boy-child into a man like me. This woman wouldn’t have been afraid to punctuate the training with a wooden spoon if necessary.
One more thing. This woman, the mother of a man like me, a man who shed the constraining shackles of fear long ago, a man who publicly bears his soul in ways that make her shake her head in disappointment, this woman has no problem walking out of a movie. Not that she’d even let herself be taken to a movie of Fifty Shades‘ caliber. Even by her son.
I’m sorry folks. I want this blog to be a place you can come for truth and laughs. I failed yesterday. The opening of yesterday’s post, the truth I sought to share, was it is really funny to think of an adult man and his mom watching Fifty Shades together. I didn’t take her. She hasn’t seen the movie. We don’t live in the same town. The parenthetical apology was an “I’m sorry for picking on you again, mom.” Not that I’ll ever stop.
But picking on her doesn’t mean I don’t love her. I do. She’s my mom. I just am compelled to avenge myself every once in a while.
By the way, she finally added to yesterday’s discussion. And on a separate note, Glenn’s review of my new book is up. Buried Within – Isn’t As Gay As I hoped