Even though I keep up with health and science news, I had some false information. The dispelation of myth is just the start of the real subject of this course. To start, the information is understandable to a layperson. In addition, it was released this year, 2013 and the information is up to date. The information is biased, but only toward fact. Science based medicine is the subject here. What is known, what is not known, what works, what doesn't, and what will harm you. In the process of describing a myth (and most he gives the history of as well), he must tell you how a biological process actually works. This bolsters the the understanding of your own biology and health, and is quite educational. As I said, I keep up with science, so most myths were obvious to me, but not the biology I learned while listening. The timing of this course is perfect. There are ill people spending money, time and hope on snake oil, others buying products they don't need for health problems they don't have, or don't even exist. Harm is coming to people from mis-information. The vaccination non-controversy is covered here as well, thankfully another platform for reliable factual information. I learned much that will effect my diet henceforth. It was solidified for me that supplements are unnecessary with a healthy diet, sans a specific deficiency which should make itself readily apparent. I decided to stop using medical marijuana because his explanation of the difficulty with dosing in addition to isolation of the active ingredient(s). During the lecture on problems with supplements, I realized why my results are so varied and unreliable. And, smoking a drug is the worst way to administer it. In my case the benefit doesn't justify not only it's risks, but obvious harm. It was costing me $300 /mo. Thanks Steve!
The "Skeptoid" podcast books by Brian Dunning, because they dispel myths as well, just from more varied subjects.
Obviously he delivers his material with the emphasis he intend when he wrote it. Subtle maybe, but I also listen to his podcast, so hearing him deliver the lectures was a treat.
Not at all. There is much information here. In fact, I'll most likely listen again in a month or so.
Studied, engaging, history
The political state of affairs in the region when Jesus began his ministry and the upheaval he perpetuated. His influence as one messiah out of many, that spurred this one to be the most influential one, and why.
Of course the author is preferred by this reader for the obvious reasons, but Dr. Aslan has the fortune of the qualities of a good narrator as well, perhaps honed by teaching.
My reaction was fascination with the history of this time and place being interesting to me. This part of history I thought was largely non-recorded, and a bore. I was wrong.
I decided to read the book after seeing Dr. Aslan on "The Young Turks", a story they did on his fox news interview. His treatment as a hack and non-christian when he is a studied authority on the subject got me interested. Why would they try to discredit him? What are they afraid of this book? I decided to find out.
I didn't think it would be interesting, and certainly must be too short to cover the subject (~8 hrs.). Wrong again. It was engaging and teeming with history of the place and the people that were in control, and the people that made Roman occupation more difficult.
Dr. Aslan provides some translations of original texts that while minor, have nuance that change the point.
Also, I didn't know it is a point of historical fact that Jesus had siblings. He became a much more interesting fellow, quite misunderstood by most.
I now find that I want a paper copy of the book for it's references to some opposing views.
So for believer or not, I recommend this book. For the believer, the demonstration of why Jesus was different than those that came before or after him, and the case for his possible divinity. For a non-believer, a thorough history and understanding of the motivations of this man.
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