the scriptaural project
The Scriptaural Project is a long-form journey through a selection of ancient texts known as The Bible.
These ancient texts were forged in a historical and cultural context. They were then written to be heard.
Get started by listening to the introduction to this project:
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As you journey through The Scriptaural Project, please send in your questions and comments along the way. We will curate the community's reflections and inquiries in our content development, adding your voice to the constellation of nuances, insights, and perspectives that make the Via Media community.
Please email your question, or record your question and email in the audio clip.
These ancient texts are profoundly visual, evoking concrete imagery, experience, and connection. Visual storytelling is woven into the fabric of these writings.
Genesis—A Better Mythology
How we tell our origin story is central to our identity, behavior, and values. The Israelites wrote a better story than their contemporaries, inspiring us all to continue the rewriting of our stories, to say again, “Let there be light.” [Genesis 1]
The Spirit—Incubating Life Out Of Chaos
We all know what chaos is. The opening lines of Genesis recognize this chaos and was written so we also know that life can be incubated out of the chaos, like an eagle hovering over its young. [Genesis 1:2]
Noah's Rainbow—God's Weapon
Natural disasters have been historically interpreted as the gods being angry. The Noah story teaches the connectedness of humanity with the land and our responsibility to establish justice, because this God hung up the bow in the clouds. [Genesis 9:13]
Ancient Contracts—Punishments Redeemed
Empires throughout history can only exist when powers know how to navigate conflict and negotiate treaties. These agreements, called "covenants," were radically reformulated with Abraham, when God took on the consequences of failure for both parties. [Genesis 15]
God's Compassion—Divinely Feminine
To declare God as "compassionate" in the Hebrew language is to describe the divine as "womb-like," a profoundly feminine conception of God. In this image, God is imaged as the great mother who provides life, and protects life, full of compassion, just like a divine womb. [Exodus 34:6]
Cunning Snake—Hidden Humanity
The snake in Genesis is the most "cunning" of all the creatures, a word that is almost identical to the description of the first humans God created, that they were "naked." What does it mean that people have a characteristic that is eerily the same as the serpent, the creature of sly deception? [Genesis 3]
The words of the wise are like goads and like nails driven in—
from the composers of collections,
given from a certain shepherd.
And more than these, my son, beware:
of making many books there is no end,
and much chatter is a weariness of the flesh.
—Qohelet 12:11-12 (Robert Alter translation)