Tag Archives: Bible

historic Musical Bits: Liszt: Années de pèlerinage, S.163 – 4. Les jeux d’eaux à la Villa d’Este – Claudio Arrau


Liszt: Années de pèlerinage, S.163 – 4. Les jeux d’eaux à la Villa d’Este – Claudio Arrau

Published on Jan 12, 2013

Les jeux d’eaux à la Villa d’Este (The Fountains of the Villa d’Este) – Over the music, Liszt placed the inscription, “”Sed aqua quam ego dabo ei, fiet in eo fons aquae salientis in vitam aeternam” (“But the water that I shall give him shall become in him a well of water springing up into eternal life,” from the Gospel of John).

 

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quotation: Homer about friends


The difficulty is not so great to die for a friend, as to find a friend worth dying for.

Homer (900 BC-800 BC) Discuss

Monday: Archive of Did you know?


Drawing of Rome during the fourteenth century.

Drawing of Rome during the fourteenth century. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Archive of Did you know?

 

Catherine of Siena escorted pope Gregory XI at...

Catherine of Siena escorted pope Gregory XI at Rome on 17th January 1377. Fresco by Giorgio Vasari (30.07.1511-27.06.1574). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Monday

 

Avignon, Palais des Papes, France

Avignon, Palais des Papes, France (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Christianity (From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)


Christianity

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 

The Sermon on the Mount by Carl Heinrich Bloch, Danish painter, d. 1890.

Christianity (from the Ancient Greek word Χριστός, Christos, a translation of the Hebrew מָשִׁיחַ, Māšîăḥ, meaning “the anointed one”,[1] together with the Latin suffixes -ian and -itas) is an Abrahamic, monotheistic[2] religion based on the life and oral teachings of Jesus of Nazareth as presented in the New Testament. Christianity is the world’s largest religion,[3][4] with about 2.4 billion adherents, known as Christians.[5][6][7][8] Christians believe that Jesus has a “unique significance” in the world.[9] Most Christians believe that Jesus is the Son of God, fully divine and fully human, and the saviour of humanity whose coming was prophesied in the Old Testament. Consequently, Christians refer to Jesus as Christ or the Messiah.

The foundations of Christian theology are expressed in ecumenical creeds. These professions of faith state that Jesus suffered, died, was buried, and was resurrected from the dead in order to grant eternal life to those who believe in him and trust in him for the remission of their sins. The creeds further maintain that Jesus bodily ascended into heaven, where he reigns with God the Father. Most Christian denominations teach that Jesus will return to judge everybody, living and dead, and to grant eternal life to his followers. He is considered the model of a virtuous life. His ministry, crucifixion, and resurrection are often referred to as “the gospel“, meaning “good news” (a loan translation of the Greek: εὐαγγέλιον euangélion). The term gospel also refers to written accounts of Jesus’s life and teaching, four of which – the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John – are considered canonical and included in Christian Bibles.

Christianity began as a Second Temple Judaic sect in the mid-1st century.[10][11] Originating in the Levant region of the Middle East, it quickly spread to Europe, Syria, Mesopotamia, Asia Minor, and Egypt. It grew in size and influence over a few centuries, and by the end of the 4th century had become the official state church of the Roman Empire, replacing other forms of religion practiced under Roman rule.[12] During the Middle Ages, most of the remainder of Europe was Christianized, and adherents were gained in the Middle East, North Africa, Ethiopia, and parts of India.[13][14] Following the Age of Discovery, Christianity spread to the Americas, Australasia, sub-Saharan Africa, and the rest of the world through missionary work and colonization.[15][16][17] Christianity has played a prominent role in the shaping of Western civilization.[18][19][20][21][22]

Worldwide, the three largest groups of Christianity are the Catholic Church, the Eastern Orthodox Church, and the various denominations of Protestantism. The Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox patriarchates split from one another in the schism of the 11th century, and Protestantism came into existence during the Reformation of the 16th century, splitting from the Roman Catholic Church.[23]

Beliefs

Christians share a certain set of beliefs that they hold as essential to their faith, though there are many important differences of interpretation and opinion of the Bible on which Christianity is based.[24]

Creeds

Main article: Creeds

Concise doctrinal statements or confessions of religious beliefs are known as creeds (from Latin credo, meaning “I believe”). They began as baptismal formulae and were later expanded during the Christological controversies of the 4th and 5th centuries to become statements of faith.

Many evangelical Protestants reject creeds as definitive statements of faith, even while agreeing with some or all of the substance of the creeds. The Baptists have been non-creedal “in that they have not sought to establish binding authoritative confessions of faith on one another.”[25]:p.111 Also rejecting creeds are groups with roots in the Restoration Movement, such as the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), the Evangelical Christian Church in Canada and the Churches of Christ.[26][27]:14–15[28]:123

 An Eastern Christian Icon depicting Emperor Constantine and the Fathers of the First Council of Nicaea (325) as holding the Niceno–Constantinopolitan Creed of 381.

The Apostles’ Creed remains the most popular statement of the articles of Christian faith which are generally acceptable to most Christian denominations that are creedal. It is widely used by a number of Christian denominations for both liturgical and catechetical purposes, most visibly by liturgical Churches of Western Christian tradition, including the Latin Church of the Catholic Church, Lutheranism, Anglicanism, and Western Rite Orthodoxy. It is also used by Presbyterians, Methodists, and Congregationalists. This particular creed was developed between the 2nd and 9th centuries. Its central doctrines are those of the Trinity and God the Creator. Each of the doctrines found in this creed can be traced to statements current in the apostolic period. The creed was apparently used as a summary of Christian doctrine for baptismal candidates in the churches of Rome.[29]

Its main points include:

The Nicene Creed, largely a response to Arianism, was formulated at the Councils of Nicaea and Constantinople in 325 and 381 respectively[30][31] and ratified as the universal creed of Christendom by the First Council of Ephesus in 431.[32]

The Chalcedonian Definition, or Creed of Chalcedon, developed at the Council of Chalcedon in 451,[33] though rejected by the Oriental Orthodox Churches,[34] taught Christ “to be acknowledged in two natures, inconfusedly, unchangeably, indivisibly, inseparably”: one divine and one human, and that both natures, while perfect in themselves, are nevertheless also perfectly united into one person.[35]

The Athanasian Creed, received in the Western Church as having the same status as the Nicene and Chalcedonian, says: “We worship one God in Trinity, and Trinity in Unity; neither confounding the Persons nor dividing the Substance.”[36]

Most Christians (Roman Catholics, Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox and Protestants alike) accept the use of creeds, and subscribe to at least one of the creeds mentioned above.[37]

Ten Commandments

Main article: Ten Commandments

The Ten Commandments are a set of biblical principles relating to ethics and worship which play a fundamental role in Judaism and most forms of Christianity. They include instructions to worship only God and to keep the Sabbath, and prohibitions against idolatry, blasphemy, murder, theft, and adultery. Different groups follow slightly different traditions for interpreting and numbering them. According to the synoptic gospels, Christ generalised the law into two underlying principles; The first is “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one; and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.” While the second is “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”[Matthew 22:34–40][Mark 12:28–33]

These are quotes from Deuteronomy 6:4 and Leviticus 19:18. Barnes’ Notes on the New Testament comments on these verses saying: “These comprehend the substance of what Moses in the law, and what the prophets have spoken. What they have said has been to endeavour to win men to the love of God and each other. Love to God and man comprehends the whole [of] religion; and to produce this has been the design of Moses, the prophets, the Saviour, and the apostles.”[38]

Jesus Christ

The central tenet of Christianity is the belief in Jesus as the Son of God and the Messiah (Christ). Christians believe that Jesus, as the Messiah, was anointed by God as savior of humanity, and hold that Jesus’ coming was the fulfillment of messianic prophecies of the Old Testament. The Christian concept of the Messiah differs significantly from the contemporary Jewish concept. The core Christian belief is that through belief in and acceptance of the death and resurrection of Jesus, sinful humans can be reconciled to God and thereby are offered salvation and the promise of eternal life.[39]

While there have been many theological disputes over the nature of Jesus over the earliest centuries of Christian history, Christians generally believe that Jesus is God incarnate and “true God and true man” (or both fully divine and fully human). Jesus, having become fully human, suffered the pains and temptations of a mortal man, but did not sin. As fully God, he rose to life again. According to the Bible, “God raised him from the dead”,[40] he ascended to heaven, is “seated at the right hand of the Father”[41] and will ultimately return[Acts 1:9–11] to fulfill the rest of Messianic prophecy such as the Resurrection of the dead, the Last Judgment and final establishment of the Kingdom of God.

According to the canonical gospels of Matthew and Luke, Jesus was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born from the Virgin Mary. Little of Jesus’ childhood is recorded in the canonical Gospels, however infancy Gospels were popular in antiquity. In comparison, his adulthood, especially the week before his death, is well documented in the Gospels contained within the New Testament, because that part of his life was believed to be most important. The Biblical accounts of Jesus’ ministry include: his baptism, miracles, preaching, teaching, and deeds.

Death and resurrection

 
Crucifixion, representing the death of Jesus on the Cross, painting by D. Velázquez, 17th century

 
Resurrection of Christ by Noel Coypel, 1700, using a hovering depiction of Jesus.

Christians consider the resurrection of Jesus to be the cornerstone of their faith (see 1 Corinthians 15) and the most important event in history.[42] Among Christian beliefs, the death and resurrection of Jesus are two core events on which much of Christian doctrine and theology is based.[43][44] According to the New Testament Jesus was crucified, died a physical death, was buried within a tomb, and rose from the dead three days later.[Jn. 19:30–31] [Mk. 16:1] [16:6]

The New Testament mentions several resurrection appearances of Jesus on different occasions to his twelve apostles and disciples, including “more than five hundred brethren at once”,[1Cor 15:6] before Jesus’ Ascension to heaven. Jesus’ death and resurrection are commemorated by Christians in all worship services, with special emphasis during Holy Week which includes Good Friday and Easter Sunday.

The death and resurrection of Jesus are usually considered the most important events in Christian theology, partly because they demonstrate that Jesus has power over life and death and therefore has the authority and power to give people eternal life.[45]

Christian churches accept and teach the New Testament account of the resurrection of Jesus with very few exceptions.[46] Some modern scholars use the belief of Jesus’ followers in the resurrection as a point of departure for establishing the continuity of the historical Jesus and the proclamation of the early church.[47] Some liberal Christians do not accept a literal bodily resurrection,[48][49] seeing the story as richly symbolic and spiritually nourishing myth. Arguments over death and resurrection claims occur at many religious debates and interfaith dialogues.[50] Paul the Apostle, an early Christian convert and missionary, wrote, “If Christ was not raised, then all our preaching is useless, and your trust in God is useless.”[1Cor 15:14] [51]

Salvation

Paul the Apostle, like Jews and Roman pagans of his time, believed that sacrifice can bring about new kinship ties, purity, and eternal life.[52] For Paul the necessary sacrifice was the death of Jesus: Gentiles who are “Christ’s” are, like Israel, descendants of Abraham and “heirs according to the promise”.[Gal. 3:29] [53] The God who raised Jesus from the dead would also give new life to the “mortal bodies” of Gentile Christians, who had become with Israel the “children of God” and were therefore no longer “in the flesh”.[Rom. 8:9,11,16] [52]

Modern Christian churches tend to be much more concerned with how humanity can be saved from a universal condition of sin and death than the question of how both Jews and Gentiles can be in God’s family. According to both Catholic and Protestant doctrine, salvation comes by Jesus’ substitutionary death and resurrection. The Catholic Church teaches that salvation does not occur without faithfulness on the part of Christians; converts must live in accordance with principles of love and ordinarily must be baptized.[54][55] Martin Luther taught that baptism was necessary for salvation, but modern Lutherans and other Protestants tend to teach that salvation is a gift that comes to an individual by God’s grace, sometimes defined as “unmerited favor”, even apart from baptism.

Christians differ in their views on the extent to which individuals’ salvation is pre-ordained by God. Reformed theology places distinctive emphasis on grace by teaching that individuals are completely incapable of self-redemption, but that sanctifying grace is irresistible.[56] In contrast Catholics, Orthodox Christians and Arminian Protestants believe that the exercise of free will is necessary to have faith in Jesus.[57]

Trinity

Main article: Trinity

 The Trinity is the belief that God is one God in three persons: God the Father, God the Son (Jesus), and God the Holy Spirit

Trinity refers to the teaching that the one God[2] comprises three distinct, eternally co-existing persons; the Father, the Son (incarnate in Jesus Christ), and the Holy Spirit. Together, these three persons are sometimes called the Godhead,[58][59][60] although there is no single term in use in Scripture to denote the unified Godhead.[61] In the words of the Athanasian Creed, an early statement of Christian belief, “the Father is God, the Son is God, and the Holy Spirit is God, and yet there are not three Gods but one God”.[62] They are distinct from another: the Father has no source, the Son is begotten of the Father, and the Spirit proceeds from the Father. Though distinct, the three persons cannot be divided from one another in being or in operation.[63]

The Trinity is an essential doctrine of mainstream Christianity. “Father, Son and Holy Spirit” represents both the immanence and transcendence of God. God is believed to be infinite and God’s presence may be perceived through the actions of Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit.[64]

According to this doctrine, God is not divided in the sense that each person has a third of the whole; rather, each person is considered to be fully God (see Perichoresis). The distinction lies in their relations, the Father being unbegotten; the Son being begotten of the Father; and the Holy Spirit proceeding from the Father and (in Western Christian theology) from the Son. Regardless of this apparent difference, the three ‘persons’ are each eternal and omnipotent.

The word trias, from which trinity is derived, is first seen in the works of Theophilus of Antioch. He wrote of “the Trinity of God (the Father), His Word (the Son) and His Wisdom (Holy Spirit)”.[65] The term may have been in use before this time. Afterwards it appears in Tertullian.[66][67] In the following century the word was in general use. It is found in many passages of Origen.[68]

Trinitarians

Main article: Trinitarianism

Trinitarianism denotes those Christians who believe in the concept of the Trinity. Almost all Christian denominations and Churches hold Trinitarian beliefs. Although the words “Trinity” and “Triune” do not appear in the Bible, theologians beginning in the 3rd century developed the term and concept to facilitate comprehension of the New Testament teachings of God as Father, God as Jesus the Son, and God as the Holy Spirit. Since that time, Christian theologians have been careful to emphasize that Trinity does not imply three gods, nor that each member of the Trinity is one-third of an infinite God; Trinity is defined as one God in three Persons.[69]

Nontrinitarians

Main article: Nontrinitarianism

Nontrinitarianism refers to theology that rejects the doctrine of the Trinity. Various nontrinitarian views, such as adoptionism or modalism, existed in early Christianity, leading to the disputes about Christology.[70] Nontrinitarianism later appeared again in the Gnosticism of the Cathars in the 11th through 13th centuries, and by groups with Unitarian theology in the Protestant Reformation of the 16th century,[71] and in the Age of Enlightenment of the 18th century, and in some groups arising during the Second Great Awakening of the 19th century.

Scriptures

Christianity, like other religions, has adherents whose beliefs and biblical interpretations vary. Christianity regards the biblical canon, the Old Testament and the New Testament, as the inspired word of God. The traditional view of inspiration is that God worked through human authors so that what they produced was what God wished to communicate. The Greek word referring to inspiration in 2 Timothy 3:16 is Theopneustos, which literally means “God-breathed”.[72]

Some believe that divine inspiration makes our present Bibles inerrant. Others claim inerrancy for the Bible in its original manuscripts, although none of those are extant. Still others maintain that only a particular translation is inerrant, such as the King James Version.[73][74][75] Another view closely related is Biblical infallibility or limited inerrancy, which affirms that the Bible is free of error as a guide to salvation, but may include errors on matters such as history, geography or science.

 The Gutenberg Bible, the first printed Bible

The books of the Bible accepted among the Orthodox, Catholic and Protestant churches vary somewhat, with Jews accepting only the Hebrew Bible as canonical; there is however substantial overlap. These variations are a reflection of the range of traditions, and of the councils that have convened on the subject. Every version of the Old Testament always includes the books of the Tanakh, the canon of the Hebrew Bible. The Catholic and Orthodox canons, in addition to the Tanakh, also include the Deuterocanonical Books as part of the Old Testament. These books appear in the Septuagint, but are regarded by Protestants to be apocryphal. However, they are considered to be important historical documents which help to inform the understanding of words, grammar and syntax used in the historical period of their conception. Some versions of the Bible include a separate Apocrypha section between the Old Testament and the New Testament.[76] The New Testament, originally written in Koine Greek, contains 27 books which are agreed upon by all churches.

Modern scholarship has raised many issues with the Bible. While the Authorized King James Version is held to by many because of its striking English prose, in fact it was translated from the Erasmus Greek Bible which in turn “was based on a single 12th Century manuscript that is one of the worst manuscripts we have available to us”.[77] Much scholarship in the past several hundred years has gone into comparing different manuscripts in order to reconstruct the original text. Another issue is that several books are considered to be forgeries. The injunction that women “be silent and submissive” in 1 Timothy 12[78] is thought by many to be a forgery by a follower of Paul, a similar phrase in 1 Corinthians 14,[79] which is thought to be by Paul, appears in different places in different manuscripts and is thought to originally be a margin note by a copyist.[77] Other verses in 1 Corinthians, such as 1 Corinthians 11:2–16 where women are instructed to wear a covering over their hair “when they pray or prophesies”,[80] contradict this verse.

A final issue with the Bible is the way in which books were selected for inclusion in the New Testament. Other Gospels have now been recovered, such as those found near Nag Hammadi in 1945, and while some of these texts are quite different from what Christians have been used to, it should be understood that some of this newly recovered Gospel material is quite possibly contemporaneous with, or even earlier than, the New Testament Gospels. The core of the Gospel of Thomas, in particular, may date from as early as 50 AD, and if so would provide an insight into the earliest gospel texts that underlie the canonical Gospels, texts that are mentioned in Luke 1:1–2. The Gospel of Thomas contains much that is familiar from the canonical Gospels – verse 113, for example (“The Father’s Kingdom is spread out upon the earth, but people do not see it”),[81] is reminiscent of Luke 17:20–21[82][83] – and the Gospel of John, with a terminology and approach that is suggestive of what was later termed Gnosticism, has recently been seen as a possible response to the Gospel of Thomas, a text that is commonly labelled proto-Gnostic. Scholarship, then, is currently exploring the relationship in the Early Church between mystical speculation and experience on the one hand and the search for church order on the other, by analyzing new-found texts, by subjecting canonical texts to further scrutiny, and by an examination of the passage of New Testament texts to canonical status.

Catholic and Orthodox interpretations

 St. Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City, the largest church in the world and a symbol of the Catholic Church.

In antiquity, two schools of exegesis developed in Alexandria and Antioch. Alexandrine interpretation, exemplified by Origen, tended to read Scripture allegorically, while Antiochene interpretation adhered to the literal sense, holding that other meanings (called theoria) could only be accepted if based on the literal meaning.[84]

Catholic theology distinguishes two senses of scripture: the literal and the spiritual.[85]

The literal sense of understanding scripture is the meaning conveyed by the words of Scripture. The spiritual sense is further subdivided into:

Regarding exegesis, following the rules of sound interpretation, Catholic theology holds:

  • the injunction that all other senses of sacred scripture are based on the literal[86][87]
  • that the historicity of the Gospels must be absolutely and constantly held[88]
  • that scripture must be read within the “living Tradition of the whole Church”[89] and
  • that “the task of interpretation has been entrusted to the bishops in communion with the successor of Peter, the Bishop of Rome“.[90]

apropos


apropos

Definition: (adjective) Being at once opportune and to the point.
Synonyms: relevant, timely
Usage: His book about safe investment, published right before the stock market crash, was more apropos than he expected. Discuss.

.@eharris_it Francis is NOT pope he has violated God’s law & Christ’s teachings & seeks to corrupt the #Catholic faith— Pray For Life (@Pray_4_Life)


word: eunuch (British Dictionary definitions for eunuch)


British Dictionary definitions for eunuch

eunuch   /ˈjuːnək/

noun

1.

a man who has been castrated, esp (formerly) for some office such as a guard in a harem
2.

(informal) an ineffective man: a political eunuch
Word Origin
C15: via Latin from Greek eunoukhos attendant of the bedchamber, from eunē bed + ekhein to have, keep
Collins English Dictionary – Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for eunuch
n.

late 14c., from Middle French eunuque and directly from Latin eunuchus, from Greek eunoukhos “castrated man,” originally “guard of the bedchamber or harem,” from euno-, comb. form of eune “bed,” of unknown origin, + -okhos, from stem of ekhein “to have, hold” (see scheme (n.)).

The Greek and Latin forms of the word were used to translate Hebrew saris, which sometimes meant merely “palace official,” in Septuagint and Vulgate, probably without an intended comment on the qualities of bureaucrats.

Eunuches is he þat is i-gilded, and suche were somtyme i-made wardeynes of ladyes in Egipt. [John of Trevisa, translation of Higdon’s Polychronicon, 1387]
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

The Pomegranate


 

The Pomegranate

 

Pomegranate Fruits. Español: Una granada, frut...

Pomegranate Fruits. Español: Una granada, fruto del granado (Punica granatum). Eesti: Granaatõun. Français : La grenade, fruit du grenadier. Русский: Плод граната. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The pomegranate is a reddish-yellow fruit native to semitropical Asia. Slightly larger than an orange, it has a tough rind, juicy pulp, and many seeds. The fruit is eaten fresh, the juice is a key ingredient in grenadine syrup, and the rind has been used as a medicinal astringent for centuries. The pomegranate has long been a religious and artistic symbol as well, appearing in ancient Asian literature, the Bible, and Greek mythology. Which Greek goddess was tricked into eating pomegranate seeds? More… Discuss

 

The Wine and the Cup -Rumi


The Wine and the Cup -Rumi

The wine of divine grace is limitless:
All limits come only from the faults of the cup.
Moonlight floods the whole sky from horizon to horizon;
How much it can fill your room depends on its windows.
Grant a great dignity, my friend, to the cup of your life;
Love has designed it to hold His eternal wine.

Regina Spektor – “Samson” [OFFICIAL VIDEO] and lyrics


[youtube.com/watch?v=p62rfWxs6a8]

Regina Spektor – “Samson” [OFFICIAL VIDEO]

Regina Spektor “Samson” Directed by Peter Sluszka

REGINA SPEKTOR  – Samson

You are my sweetest downfall

I loved you first, I loved you first

Beneath the sheets of paper lies my truth

I have to go, I have to go

Your hair was long when we first met

Samson went back to bed
Not much hair left on his head
He ate a slice of wonder bread and went right back to bed
And history books forgot about us and the bible didn’t mention us
And the bible didn’t mention us, not even once

You are my sweetest downfall
I loved you first, I loved you first
Beneath the stars came fallin’ on our heads
But they’re just old light, they’re just old light
Your hair was long when we first met

Samson came to my bed
Told me that my hair was red
Told me I was beautiful and came into my bed
Oh I cut his hair myself one night
A pair of dull scissors in the yellow light
And he told me that I’d done alright
And kissed me ’til the mornin’ light, the mornin’ light
And he kissed me ’til the mornin’ light

Samson went back to bed
Not much hair left on his head
Ate a slice of wonderbread and went right back to bed
Oh, we couldn’t bring the columns down
Yeah we couldn’t destroy a single one
And history books forgot about us
And the bible didn’t mention us, not even once

You are my sweetest downfall
I loved you first
 ////////////////////////|\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\

Regina’s album ‘What We Saw from the Cheap Seats‘ is available now:
http://smarturl.it/whatwesawitunesyt

For more Regina:
http://Facebook.com/ReginaSpektor
http://ReginaSpektor.com
http://myspace.com/ReginaSpektor 

ARTICLE: “SHIBBOLETH”


“Shibboleth”

An easy way to get a sense of whether or not someone is a musical insider is to have him say the word “timbre.” This is because musicians generally pronounce the first syllable of that word differently than non-musicians. “Timbre” is therefore a shibboleth—a word whose pronunciation can be used to distinguish between groups. The word has its origins in the Bible, which recounts the killing of 42,000 fugitive soldiers identified by their pronunciation of “shibboleth.” How did they say it? More… Discuss

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ARTICLE: CRYPTOGRAPHY


Cryptography

Cryptography concerns the securing of information, often during communication, by translating messages into cipher or code. Ciphering has always been considered vital for diplomatic and military secrecy—the Bible is replete with examples of ciphering, and many figures throughout history have written in ciphers, including Julius Caesar, Charlemagne, Mary Queen of Scots, and Louis XIV. What legal issues and controversies surround cryptography methods in the 21st century? More…Discuss

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Vatican Radio: Fifth Sermon for Lent: St Gregory the Great on understanding scripture


Fifth Sermon for Lent: St Gregory the Great on understanding scripture


(Vatican Radio) Below please find the complete text of the fifth sermon for Lent delievered by Fr. Raniero Cantalamessa, OFMCAP, Preacher to the Papal Household delivered Friday April 11, 2014:

In our attempt to place ourselves under the teaching of the Fathers to give a new impetus and depth to our faith, we cannot omit a reflection on their way of reading the Word of God. It will be Pope St. Gregory the Great who will guide us to the “spiritual understanding” of the Scriptures and a renewed love for them. 
The same thing happened to Scripture in the modern world that happened to the person of Jesus. The quest for the exclusively historical and literal sense of the Bible, based on the same presuppositions that dominated during the last two centuries, led to results similar to those in the quest for a historical Jesus opposed to the Christ of faith. Jesus was reduced to being an extraordinary man, a great religious reformer, but nothing more. >>>>>>>>>>More

[Text from page http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2014/04/11/fifth_sermon_for_lent:_st_gregory_the_great_on_understanding_scripture/en1-789841
of the Vatican Radio website ]
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THE DIAMOND SUTRA


The Diamond Sutra

The Diamond Sutra is a Buddhist wisdom text. Written in the form of a dialogue between the Buddha Gautama and a questioning disciple, it emphasizes the fleeting nature of the material world and posits that enlightenment cannot be achieved through rational thought. A wood block-printed copy of the sutra held at the British Library is the earliest known printed text with a date—868 CE—predating the Gutenberg Bible by about 587 years. The copy, in scroll form, is roughly how many feet long? More… Discuss

Don McLean- American Pie



A long, long time ago…
I can still remember
How that music used to make me smile.
And I knew if I had my chance
That I could make those people dance
And, maybe, they’d be happy for a while.

But february made me shiver
With every paper I’d deliver.
Bad news on the doorstep;
I couldn’t take one more step.

I can’t remember if I cried
When I read about his widowed bride,
But something touched me deep inside
The day the music died.

So bye-bye, miss american pie.
Drove my chevy to the levee,
But the levee was dry.
And them good old boys were drinkin’ whiskey and rye
Singin’, “this’ll be the day that I die.
“this’ll be the day that I die.”

Did you write the book of love,
And do you have faith in God above,
If the Bible tells you so? 
Do you believe in rock ‘n roll,
Can music save your mortal soul,
And can you teach me how to dance real slow? 

Well, I know that you’re in love with him
`cause I saw you dancin’ in the gym.
You both kicked off your shoes.
Man, I dig those rhythm and blues.

I was a lonely teenage broncin’ buck
With a pink carnation and a pickup truck,
But I knew I was out of luck
The day the music died.

I started singin’,
“bye-bye, miss american pie.”
Drove my chevy to the levee,
But the levee was dry.
Them good old boys were drinkin’ whiskey and rye
And singin’, “this’ll be the day that I die.
“this’ll be the day that I die.”

Now for ten years we’ve been on our own
And moss grows fat on a rollin’ stone,
But that’s not how it used to be.
When the jester sang for the king and queen,
In a coat he borrowed from james dean
And a voice that came from you and me,

Oh, and while the king was looking down,
The jester stole his thorny crown.
The courtroom was adjourned;
No verdict was returned.
And while lennon read a book of marx,
The quartet practiced in the park,
And we sang dirges in the dark
The day the music died.

We were singing,
“bye-bye, miss american pie.”
Drove my chevy to the levee,
But the levee was dry.
Them good old boys were drinkin’ whiskey and rye
And singin’, “this’ll be the day that I die.
“this’ll be the day that I die.”

Helter skelter in a summer swelter.
The birds flew off with a fallout shelter,
Eight miles high and falling fast.
It landed foul on the grass.
The players tried for a forward pass,
With the jester on the sidelines in a cast.

Now the half-time air was sweet perfume
While the sergeants played a marching tune.
We all got up to dance,
Oh, but we never got the chance!
`cause the players tried to take the field;
The marching band refused to yield.
Do you recall what was revealed
The day the music died? 

We started singing,
“bye-bye, miss american pie.”
Drove my chevy to the levee,
But the levee was dry.
Them good old boys were drinkin’ whiskey and rye
And singin’, “this’ll be the day that I die.
“this’ll be the day that I die.”

Oh, and there we were all in one place,
A generation lost in space
With no time left to start again.
So come on: jack be nimble, jack be quick!
Jack flash sat on a candlestick
Cause fire is the devil’s only friend.

Oh, and as I watched him on the stage
My hands were clenched in fists of rage.
No angel born in hell
Could break that satan’s spell.
And as the flames climbed high into the night
To light the sacrificial rite,
I saw satan laughing with delight
The day the music died

He was singing,
“bye-bye, miss american pie.”
Drove my chevy to the levee,
But the levee was dry.
Them good old boys were drinkin’ whiskey and rye
And singin’, “this’ll be the day that I die.
“this’ll be the day that I die.”

I met a girl who sang the blues
And I asked her for some happy news,
But she just smiled and turned away.
I went down to the sacred store
Where I’d heard the music years before,
But the man there said the music wouldn’t play.

And in the streets: the children screamed,
The lovers cried, and the poets dreamed.
But not a word was spoken;
The church bells all were broken.
And the three men I admire most:
The father, son, and the holy ghost,
They caught the last train for the coast
The day the music died.

And they were singing,
“bye-bye, miss american pie.”
Drove my chevy to the levee,
But the levee was dry.
And them good old boys were drinkin’ whiskey and rye
Singin’, “this’ll be the day that I die.
“this’ll be the day that I die.”

They were singing,
“bye-bye, miss american pie.”
Drove my chevy to the levee,
But the levee was dry.
Them good old boys were drinkin’ whiskey and rye
Singin’, “this’ll be the day that I die.”

 

This Day in the YesteryeARCREATION OF THE WORLD, ACCORDING TO ARCHBISHOP JAMES USSHER (4004 BCE)


Creation of the World, According to Archbishop James Ussher (4004 BCE)

For centuries, Christian scholars have tried to deduce the precise date of creation, using Biblical sources to help guide them. One such scholar, 17th-century Irish archbishop James Ussher, devised a system of dates that sets the creation of the world at 4004 BCE. Ussher’s chronology rests upon the beliefs that creation began in autumn—the season that marks the start of the year according to the Jewish lunisolar calendar—near the autumnal equinox and that creation began on what day of the week? More…Discuss

 

Quotation: William Makepeace Thackeray


Are not there little chapters in everybody’s life, that seem to be nothing, and yet affect all the rest of the history?

William Makepeace Thackeray (1811-1863) Discuss

 

The Truth Behind – The Truth Behind the Devil’s Bible (from National Gegraphic Channel)



 http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/channel/the-truth-behind/ Allegedly made from the skins of 160 donkeys, the Codex Gigas is the world’s largest and most mysterious medieval manuscript.

Last Year’s Man: Leonard Cohen ( From the Album Songs of Love and Hate)


Last year’s Man (Leonard Cohen)

The rain falls down on last year’s man,
that’s a jew’s harp on the table,
that’s a crayon in his hand.
And the corners of the blueprint are ruined since they rolled
far past the stems of thumbtacks
that still throw shadows on the wood.
And the skylight is like skin for a drum I’ll never mend
and all the rain falls down amen
on the works of last year’s man.

I met a lady, she was playing with her soldiers in the dark
oh one by one she had to tell them
that her name was Joan of Arc.
I was in that army, yes I stayed a little while;
I want to thank you, Joan of Arc,
for treating me so well.

And though I wear a uniform I was not born to fight;
all these wounded boys you lie beside,
goodnight, my friends, goodnight.

I came upon a wedding that old families had contrived;
Bethlehem the bridegroom,
Babylon the bride.
Great Babylon was naked, oh she stood there trembling for me,
and Bethlehem inflamed us both
like the shy one at some orgy.
And when we fell together all our flesh was like a veil
that I had to draw aside to see
the serpent eat its tail.

Some women wait for Jesus, and some women wait for Cain
so I hang upon my altar
and I hoist my axe again.
And I take the one who finds me back to where it all began
when Jesus was the honeymoon
and Cain was just the man.
And we read from pleasant Bibles that are bound in blood and skin
that the wilderness is gathering
all its children back again.

The rain falls down on last year’s man,
an hour has gone by
and he has not moved his hand.
But everything will happen if he only gives the word;
the lovers will rise up
and the mountains touch the ground.
But the skylight is like skin for a drum I’ll never mend
and all the rain falls down amen
on the works of last year’s man.


Songs of Love and Hate is Canadian singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen‘s third album. It was mainly recorded in Columbia Studio A, Nashville, from September 22 to 26, 1970. “Sing Another Song, Boys” was recorded at the Isle of Wight Festival on August 30, 1970. Further recording took place at Trident Studios in London. The album reached #145 on the Billboard list, but was his most commercially successful album in many other parts of the world, reaching #4 in the UK and #8 in Australia.[3]

 

The album title is descriptive, outlining its main themes. The songs contain emotive language and are frankly personal; “Famous Blue Raincoat” ends with the line “Sincerely, L. Cohen”. The back cover of the album bears the lines:

 

They locked up a man
Who wanted to rule the world
The fools
They locked up the wrong man
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Songs_of_Love_and_Hate)