In our daily study session we are going through the Virtues guide for the second time. After the eighth reading of God Loves Laughter I firmly resist reading what Tommy considers the greatest Baha'i book ever written. Influenced perhaps by Bill Sears having to read the Bible on the sly, against the will of his father, we are going through the Bible. I must say that I am reading it with new eyes this time.
Against my will, the kids started watching South Park lately, and every time the Biblical account says something like, "He then got on his ass and traveled to wherever," my words are accompanied by uproarious guffaws. "What?" I reply, "I did not say he got off his ass, I said he got on his ass." Last night Tomaso even drew a picture of two biblical figures riding these grotesque double gluteous maximi across the desert.
We are well into Exodus now, but there were passages in Genesis that were very sexually explicit and I could see why William Sears father disapproved of children reading the Bible too young. The story of Onan especially, and Jacob with his love of frequenting prostitutes. Jacob, it turns out, was a john. Why do they mess up my name by using it for a whore's client, why not call them jacobs? Anyway.
Another surprise is how terse the Bible stories are, compared to the movies they make about them. And since we are going so slowly through the Bible, we have taken every chance to watch some of the movies on the Bible. One of the best I have ever seen is "Joseph" a recent made for TV flick starring Ben Kingsley as Potiphar. They must have consulted some very good scholars in making this since the story makes clear many parts of the story of Jacob that make no sense just reading the text. It goes into motivations, for example, why the brothers were so vehement to break their father's agreement when their sister fell in love with a local boy. Since Tommy loves all things Egyptian, he watched raptly too. I think this is the best made for TV film I have ever seen.
Another recent movie we saw was The Ten Commandments, which is so different from the Charlton Heston film of the same name and theme, and so much more violent, that it was positively shocking. Again, you do not realize it just reading the spare biblical account, but the people of Moses were let loose in a wilderness full of angry tribes ready to kill, rob and plunder the freed slaves at every opportunity. I had never looked at it that way but it makes sense.
We now go every week to the community farm to pick up a basket full of produce. This time we got a basket full of heritage tomatoes, otherwise known as real tomatoes, or ones of the non-cardboard variety. They were small and had green rims around them -- yes, the farmer explained, you can eat that part. It tastes the same but puts off supermarket shoppers. Some tomatoes were crushed on the way home, some rotted within hours but it did not matter, they tasted like the ones I had when I was a kid. Good taste and nostalgia in one bite.
My son Tomaso turns eleven on Tuesday. He wants a Nintendo DS Lite so that he can communicate with his friend, also called Tomas, in the middle of a game, or something. His grandfather will be shelling out the hundred and forty dollars it costs. Lately Tomaso posted this notice all around the house:
Tommy's Business and Sales Company
- business and individual loans
- item, vehicle, flight and bodily insurance
- a frank opinion of your looks
- technology or exo-biology reserch and study
so if you need or dont need one of these things, come to my room and wait for either Tommy or Hobbes to take your request!
Tommy H.E. Taylor
My daughter Silvie often checks the Badi' blog so I have to be careful what I say. She has grown into a lovely, vehement young lady, an ardent feminist, a fanfiction fan, a comic book artist who is undecided whether she wants to become a Baha'i. She will be turning sweet 16 on the 27th of this month.
August 08, 2010