The Narratives of Religion

  • William Grassie


Even as the natural sciences challenge the literal plausibility of ancient religious cosmologies and the accounts of miracles in these narratives, so too the historical sciences challenge the literal plausibility of sacred scriptures as actual historical record. We need to begin by reexamining and rethinking the interpretation of these sacred stories from the bottom up. Believers believe that their stories are true, for instance, that Moses was a real person who led the Hebrews out of slavery and received the Torah directly from God on Mount Sinai or that there really was a Prince Siddhartha Gautama who searched for and found enlightenment in the sixth century b.c.e. Moreover, they believe that contained in these ancient stories is information vital to contemporary humans. In fact, the historical evidence for either of these stories from the ancient past is quite sparse and filtered largely through centuries of oral history, mythological elaborations, and sectarian biases before they were even recorded in written form by religious partisans.


Sacred Text Catholic Social Teaching Religious Fundamentalism Social Imagination Dialectical Materialism 
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© William Grassie 2010

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  • William Grassie

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