Three things set this book apart.
1) It is entertainingly written and passionately narrated.
2) The author's ability to make you feel like you're in Galilee and Judea, in biblical times.
3) You get to hear a balanced non-christian view of the new testament.
The descriptions of the places and times of the events really bring the gospel narratives to life and give you a sense of what it may have been like, the day to day goings on of ordinary folk, the violence of the time, the brutality of the roman reign, the politics of the temple, and so on. And its delivered mostly in a way that accepts the detail of gospels as pointers to historical truth while reminding us the bible does not really seek to present "history" as we know it, but truth. Occasionally the author's opinions jar the senses, but hey, this is a great book for promoting discussion about the gospel, so what could be bad about that?
Anyway, extremely well written, worth a listen.
This book totally captured me. I loved it.
And then it fell apart in the last chapter.
So, for the first umpteen chapters, 5 stars. For that last falling apart drivel in the last chapter, 1 star.
I never realised how rich and interesting all the characters in these stories were.
While the plots are predictable, the solutions to the mysteries, the unexpected outcomes, and the fascinating people that inhabit the Holmes/Watson universe make it all worth it.
I get it now: Sherlock Holmes is cool, and I am a convert.
OK. I'm only 3/4 of the way through this epic read, but what a fascinating story.
There are many "aha!" moments when you get a sudden insight into why the church (or churches in their various forms) - and society in general - is the way it is today. I find this actually makes christianity in all its various forms more accessible and understandable.
If there is a pattern in the history of the church and christianity, it seems to parallel secular society: good ideas and rulers rise to the top, give way to corruption and abuse over generations, leading to reformations and revolutions. And so it goes...
A timely reminder to me to keep going back to the bible as the main source of Christianity, and a warning to be wary of dodgy translations (such as the russian sect that, due to the misinterpretation of one word, castrated themselves).
I find the author to be genuinely sensitive to the beliefs, and the history and motives behind the traditions, of christianity. The book is instructive, informative and entertaining.
Awesome, epic read.
Well, I need a rest from philosophy now. But for an introduction to philosophy, and philosophers (what is a philosopher?) I found it very engaging, entertaining and illuminating. I'm sure I'll listen to it again one day.
I go it. I liked it, and I'll listen to it again. Felt very real, the childhood stories, the hard training yards, the focus, the competitiveness, the ups and downs and so on. Very listenable.
It was very worthwhile to hear a success story based on hard consistent work.
But, whatever happened to Dusty? I'd like to read that as a sequel!
To anyone (like me) who has read the bible cover to cover before, and thought - no, wait, I have to re-read that bit - or - "How come I never heard that verse in church before?" - this is a refreshing reminder that you are not alone. Opening up the bible and embracing its complexity, and providing a wonderful summary of it in all its difficulty and glory, this is a great non-Sunday School re-listening to all the old stories.
I've always felt that many of the Christians and churches I know cherry pick the bible before re-interpreting it and mixing it with pop-psychology to spout some way of living that doesn't always feel biblically authentic actually does the bible a great disservice. This book does not do that - it just lays open the stories and thrust of the words, along the way asking valid - if often irreverent - questions. Listening to the bible like this, you actually feel the Good Book evolve and grow up as it makes its way from Genesis to Chronicles.
I will listen to this again.
Starts really good, has great information and reinforces the need to shut up in order to actually listen. Has some great techniques, presented well, explained well. Lots of anecdotes.
But I always find this problem with books about "Listening". Somewhere along the line, you need to be listened to, and the unspoken presumption is that if you listen, REALLY listen, then your turn will come around and the other person will listen to you. But in my experience, that doesn't happen so often.
A great follow up book would be "How to be heard".
Having said all that, I'll listen to it again.
Mr Navarro establishes his qualifications at the start of the book. And then again every few pages or so. I would have liked less of that.
I would listen to another one. The information is helpful, and interesting.
Monotone. For a while I thought he might actually start spelling out words. Clear? YES. Interesting? NO.
While the constant restating he is an FBI Agent, and the monotone delivery was annoying, on the whole, the information is useful, often surprising, fresh and clearly presented. The emphasis on what can and cannot be read from viewing body language was honest and informative. I'll listen to this one again.
Illuminating, edifying, listenable
It's got to be said that Eckhardt's voice is velvet smooth and crystal clear: it's both calm and compelling, while he himself is humorous and hypnotising.
It's good - it really is a worthwhile read/listen.
The only bad bits are where he drifts into BS-science+biology - (like saying animals are truly free and have no ego. Half an hour of Discovery Channel dispels that notion).
But overall, his interpretations of scriptures and texts from Buddhism, philosophy, Christianity, The Tao, etc., are worth listening to and examining, and his explanations are clear and easily understood.
Not too much mumbo-jumbo.
Seeing / hearing these in a fresh light opens up the concepts he covers in a whole new light, makes them fresh. He tackles the really big questions, like - What is suffering, surrender, presence, mindfulness, consciousness, heaven and so on?
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