For the Love of God: The Bible as an Open Book
Rutgers University Press, 2007 - 164 páginas
Choice Outstanding Academic Title of 2008
Alicia Ostriker named to Moment Magazine's list of Ten Great Jewish Poets, 2011Quoting King Solomon's famous prayer to God at the Temple in Jerusalem, "Behold, the heaven of heavens cannot contain thee; how much less this house that I have builded," Alicia Suskin Ostriker posits a God who cannot be contained by dogma and doctrine. Troubled by the way the Bible has become identified in our culture with a monolithic authoritarianism, Ostriker focuses instead on the extraordinary variability of Biblical writing.
For the Love of God is a provocative and inspiring re-interpretation of six essential Biblical texts: The Song of Songs, the Book of Ruth, Psalms, Ecclesiastes, Jonah, and Job. In prose that is personal and probing, analytically acute and compellingly readable, Ostriker sees these writings as "counter-texts," deviating from convention yet deepening and enriching the Bible, our images of God, and our own potential spiritual lives. Attempting to understand "some of the wildest, strangest, most splendid writing in Western tradition," she shows how the Bible embraces sexuality and skepticism, boundary crossing and challenges to authority, how it illuminates the human psyche and mirrors our own violent times, and how it asks us to make difficult choices in the quest for justice.
For better or worse, our society is wedded to the Bible. But according to Talmud, "There is always another interpretation." Ostriker demonstrates that the Bible, unlike its reputation, offers a plenitude of surprises.
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... Anti-Psalm: A Personal Interlude 55 Ecclesiastes as Witness 76 Jonah: The Book of the Question 99 Job: The Open Book 120 Afterword 143 Some Further Reading 147 Notes 153 Preface he present book continues the labor and pleasure of.
I write in the hope that my readers will feel free to engage in their own interpretive acts. Work such as this is essentially collective, and I am grateful to many friends and associates for their stimulating and wise conversations, ...
Today, I try to imagine the change in the global religious climate if literalist and fundamentalist readers of every stripe should come to understand that the petty structures of our intellects, theologies, and dogmas can never contain ...
Readers coming to the Song of Songs for the first time commonly express astonishment at its apparently sacrilegious presence in scripture; God is never mentioned once in it; yet the great rabbi Akiba declared the Song “a holy of holies.
The interpretations in the following chapters are examples of how one contemporary reader responds to this open book ... With luck, readers will instantly begin interpreting for themselves. My title, For the Love of God, ...