The Great Adventure Catholic Bible – Review

I received this over a week ago and am going to give one of my dine and dash reviews.

We’ll start from the outside and work our way in.

The cover is a nice, dark blue, faux leather that is pleasing to the touch, durable and nicely “floppy” for holding open and maneuvering through the chapters. The text is of a good, readable font and is large enough that an aging fuddy duddy as myself can read it without too much trouble. I have a pocket Douay-Rheims that I cannot read comfortably at all. This new one is of a perfect size and readability.

The books of the Bible are color-coded with planed tabs at the fore edge of their pages according to which type of book they are. So the Psalms and Proverbs, Songs, Ecclesiastes are not only next to each other in the overall book, but share the same color. Judges and Joshua are the same color (green). These colors also correspond with a timeline table in the Bible itself. Although some are not timeline-able like Genesis (except for the fact that it is first) and Proverbs and and others like it. But certainly other books of the Bible are timeline-able. I haven’t really got into that part of it yet, but the tabs are great, so far, for navigation.

There are some seventy key events highlighted through out the Bible, with brief descriptions or explanations, as sign posts of…well, key events. I did chuckle a little when number one was Creation. Yeah, thanks, that is a pretty important one!

The articles are pretty good as far as I have read them (which is only the first ones at the very beginning).

The good thing about the articles (so far) is their aim. It is not a modern, historical criticism dirge, but seeks to lay out salvation history in broad strokes, in periods. The articles also trace the covenants through time.
It is NOT a study Bible which I have become disillusioned with anyway. It is also not a commentary. There are only 19 articles in the whole thing and they are only about seven pages apiece. What is attempted is the over-arching story of salvation and the covenants. It focuses on the story. If you are looking for a Bible that helps you with Psalms, this is not it. But if that is what you are looking for, best to get a commentary.

Jesus’ words are in read in this one. I like that. The way the Bible is set, it is confusing if you do not have it memorized.

There are sixteen maps included. They are glossy and nicely done and are organized according to various points in Jewish history basically from Abraham to Rome.

I am finding it rather comfortable reading RSV-CE 2nd edition. I only read Catholic Bibles because only they have the correct number of books in it!

It is a little pricey – $60. But, if I had found it in a store even without all the extras, I probably still would have bought it.

Very pleased so far.


Finally Decided on a Bible and Those Clowns! Clowns!

For awhile now I have been seeking to acquire a reading Bible that I could call my own. I say a reading Bible as opposed to the Douay-Rheims & Clementina Vulgata edition, an old 70’s family bible (it has wonderful script in it and art) and the numerous other versions I have through Verbum software. The first two are large sized books and thick. The others are digital and I usually use them for reference. And a couple of them are not even in English.

Part of the search was easy because you can disregard a large number of modern versions that make for terrible reading. And while the KJV (with apocrypha, of course) sounds the most impressive, it is really only because of the arcane language.

I had spent some time trying to find a nice old one with the nice leather but usually those found were from individual churches from Nebraska in 1846 and they usually smelled like mildew. That, and they are usually written in, “To Martha, God Bless.” Well, I’m not Martha.

It turns out the people who published my DR-Clementina Vulgata, Baronius Press, also put out a nice pocket size Douay-Rheims in leather, smythe sewn, head and tail bands, gilded pages, decorative endpages and satin ribbon markers. I chose the burgundy. Because I like it.

Another important feature that I required was the artwork inside. I had bought a pocket sized NAB translation (not my first choice, btw) about a year ago. If it had not been sealed, I would have seen the “artwork” inside and not purchased it. It looked like the hokey artwork I remember from bible camp as a child. It shouldn’t look like those nutty comics that used to circulate in the 70’s for children with the cheesy Jesus in artwork that was borderline cartoon.

I like the black and white sketch work in this one. Here’s a sample. You have to click on it to see (I don’t know why).

That book only cost me $10 and its quality showed. My new one is $40 – and I think it’s a steal.

I had to sacrifice a little. I prefer some wording more than others. I never liked 2 Timothy 4:1 stated “the living and the dead” when “the quick and the dead” is simply better. I mean come on, people, get a dictionary. But the Douay-Rheims is still a good translation.


On the writing front I’ve been revamping my clown story from 2015. Those wascally clowns are going to cause a little more mayhem than we anticipated! The actual writing for that is scheduled for tomorrow.

I also went through all my past unfinished writing projects and came up with ways to get them to the finish line. Funny thing is, almost all of them had potential for further work. If I shrink the amount of time I leave them in the drawer by 7 or 13 years, I could get some regular stuff out the door. However, The Five Deaths of Horace Gumble still has several months to wait in the brine.

Wizard’s Resources


I was listing (eh hem, bragging) to someone today of my numerous resources. And I had forgotten this little gem sitting on one of my bookshelves.

It is a beautifully illustrated book covering many mystical and visceral creatures of meadows, forest sand dark corners. It is divided into two sections: part one is elves and part two is goblins and other little creatures.

Many a creature one will meet in these pages, some familiar, some obscure. Most of us have heard of Puck, the Drac, sylphs or the will-o’-the-wisps. But there be others not so known, the Asrai, Patupaiarehe


You get dwarves, goblins, elves, sprites, creatures of the ponds and lakes and the rivers, of the meadows and the garden, the sea and the coast, of the mountains, heaths and hills, and of the shadows and many others besides. And they are from all over the globe and from every culture.

Funny thing to observe. It is observed that religion is ubiquitous to man in all times and all places. And so are these class of creatures. A modernist would shrug off such an observation as man is an idiot in all times and all places. And while I do not discredit wholly that assertion, I do not agree that religion and faerie are the result of idiocy.

I am quite willing to go on record and claim the exact opposite. I am even prepared to go on record and say both are to the glory of man.

But this wasn’t to be about a single book. I wish there was an equivalent book on monsters.

I had laid out (the bragging I had referenced at the beginning) to this person my general reference material: Sisson’s Synonyms (that’s a new acquisition though) complete OED, Fowler’s Dictionary of Modern Usage, and some picture dictionaries that I find indispensable.

But I then dove into my digital reference material which is mainly religious (Catholic really) in nature. It is pretty impressive. And I am leaving out my complete collection of Ante-Nicene, Nicene, and Post-Nicene Fathers collections, my complete Summa Theologica and other related things.

Why am I writing about it though? Because it was shortly, pretty damn shortly too, after acquiring all this that I went into school and haven’t had much occasion to even glance at it until now.

  • Vatican II documents
  • Saints and Feasts of the Liturgical Year
  • The Roman Missal, The Roman Martyrology
  • The Book of Saints, The Book of the Popes
  • Catholic Pocket Dictionary and Cyclopedia, Collins Thesaurus of the Bible
  • Dictionary of Latin Forms
  • Dictionary of the Vulgate New Testament
  • Great Quotations
  • An Introduction to Ecclesiastical Latin
  • Manual of the Councils of the Holy Catholic Church

I left out I don’t know how many pictorial/maps to the ancient biblical world books. Aramaic, Greek and other such dictionaries and bibles. Several books on the Council of Trent, Vat I, etc, etc.

All that and more, plus I still have in my possession the entire Durant history series.

I am going to be playing for a long time now!

Richard Dawkins Baffled by 99% of Reality

This clip is hilarious. I could also have titled this Stick to Your Profession. Forget about the first part of the clip where they ask a guy if he believes in the story of Lot and he says yes because Jesus believed it (I really don’t know how he knows Jesus believed it – did anyone ever ask Jesus, “Hey, you believe that story about Lot and his daughters and his wife turning to salt?”).

At around 1:48 a Jewish woman to Dawkin’s left tells him, according to her, what the moral of the story is. And Dawkin’s response is so typical of a certain modern mentality who thinks all truth as mere relating of facts.

“Why not just say “Argue about it?” he asks, “Why wrap it up?” Yes, Dawkins, perhaps we should just go through all poetry, all stories, all art through all of time and strip the plain text message out of it and we can dispense with the art itself.

Why write a story about never giving up and keeping your hope in X alive? Why not just say “Don’t give up.” You just saved thousands of words.

All of art, of philosophy, of theology is beyond Dawkin’s ability to comprehend. He does not understand the basic functioning of the human mind. We are not moved by formula, nor by memes (which don’t even exist as he thinks they do) nor by mere plain injunctions.

I used to be a very staunch atheist up until a few years ago. I say staunch, but I was no creature like Dawkins who I find uncouth. But I knew never to argue outside my ken. I would never argue about the crucifixion of Christ knowing almost nothing about it theologically.

As Dawkins does at 2:57. This betrays a staggering lack of sophistication, reading comprehension and/or laziness. Dawkins trick is to always present the religious story from the point of utter ignorance and present that as the truth of the story. If you are going to argue against the story of man’s redemption through the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ, at least be familiar with the material.

People worship this Dawkins guy like some sort of atheist crusader hero. When I was an atheist, I considered this guy an embarrassment.

The Jewish lady at 5:55 explains why the Bible is not The Cat in the Hat. Dawkins represents the distortion, the temporary oasis from the real hardships of life that a good portion of westerners have been able to enjoy for so long.

Again demonstrating his complete lack of understanding of human nature at 7:25 he asks, “Why bother with the Bible at all when we can go straight to moral philosophy?”

We do not ingest morality from the philosophers. We ingest morality through art. Anybody ever seen a mother blundering through Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics when choosing how to instruct he son on right behavior? Or how about Kant’s Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals? How about a little Hegel?

9:35 he begins to expound on the Ten Commandments, well, the first few anyway, and then has to have their meaning explained to him. I believe this man’s problem is arrogance. He does not even bother to know his material first. It’s not like this stuff flew off the shelf last Tuesday.

Again, you can disagree with the meaning of the commandments, but you have to get the meaning right first. There are philosophers that have objected to the actual meaning of those commandments. Dawkins, unable to see past his ego, presents his complete lack of comprehension as the challenge.

At 11:05 Dawkins, seeing he is not winning any points goes for the insult to the ancients. See, when I mentioned Aristotle’s Nicomachean ethics I forgot to mention that Dawkin’s would not have meant that as moral philosophy. Those people were ignorant. No, what he would mean by moral philosophy would be something that is written within the last twenty years. Something with an eye to science, a bowed knee to science. He is deservedly booed for this remark.

I truly think the man is simply not worth listening to. I think it is simple rabble rousing and ego stroking. Listening to the piece you will here him waver repeatedly between the Bible is terrible, why read it. To he respects is as literature. To it was written by ignorant people so why bother.

The Jewish lady sitting next to him belts him a real good one at 11:50. At 12:35 he lists other people we could listen to such as Confucius and Buddha… eh… what? Did they not also live in the ignorant era? If we’re not going to pay attention to ignorant Jewish scribes, as he puts it, because they lived long ago, why would we listen to other people from just as long ago?

And who says a Jew or a Christian couldn’t get something from Buddha or Confucius? Apparently he’s never heard of Thomas Merton the Trappist monk.

If you want to hear real atheist arguments go read St. Thomas. Dawkins is just a fool. But a fool for the modern mind hence his drone followers.

In exactly the same vein, Neil deGrasse Tyson wants all you bitches to stop saying the poem Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star to your kids – cuz that ain’t how the shit works, man. Get on the science train people. You’re going to permanently fuck your child’s brain if you recite that poem to them and not a scientific description to them from an astronomical textbook.

Just kidding. He does sort of say that, but only because I didn’t have the whole context of the interview. I don’t mind Tyson, he keeps his foot out of his mouth pretty well. His commentary on dark matter and the God of the Gaps is spot on.


Modern Translations

Last week, during my vacation, I made it over to Alleluia! Catholic Book Store in Kent and bought a little hand held Bible. As I’ve stated before I am turning into a little bit of a collector of Bibles. This one is the NAB translation. I also purchased one of those “read it in a year programs” that breaks down reading voluminous works as the Bible into small, daily pieces. I got as far as Joshua before in the OT (and through Acts in the NT) but life (if it be called) comes in, stirs it around, and three weeks later I’ve lost what I was doing. Companion to reading the Bible in a year in this thingamabob is, parallel, reading the CCC (Catechism of the Catholic Church).

So I’m reading Genesis (4:1) in the NAB translation and came across this verse:

The man had intercourse with his wife Eve, and she conceived and gave birth to Cain,

which, in the past was more commonly, probably universally, worded thusly in the English,

And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain,

What is the next translational iteration of this verse?

Adam mounted Eve and ejaculated, and she…


Adam fucked Eve…


Adam got it on with his bitch… [this would be the hip version, for those that want a little urban mix in their Book]


Adam performed the act of coitus on Eve…

The man had intercourse with his wife…

Who did this translation? James Patterson? John Grisham? Such ugly language. I don’t mean offensive, but non-poetic, sterile. The television show The Big Bang Theory commonly has one of its characters refer to sex as “coitus” a clinical word lacking entirely in expression. The show has the character using that word as a joke because he is the type of character that would use such a word to refer to sex (a phenomena the character has not any interest in).

I brought this sort of thing up before when I saw that the expression “… the quick and the dead..” had been rendered “… the living and the dead…” That was the Douay-Rheims translation, and it is shared by most of the others.

But this is even worse. Intercourse is equally a clinical word, sterile in its physical description. It takes the subtly of the old translation away and replaces it with a compound word no poet would use unless under the greatest duress.

So why? Because people don’t understand what “knew” means? Learn. It is quite easy to infer what “knew” meant in the old translations. It is not the case the “knew” was a cover up because it is quite easy to infer as I said.

It seems only the KJV version is, so far, immune to such modern butchery of the language.

I also notice in Matthew 1, the NAB manages to not use the same language,

He had no relations with her until she bore a son,[l] and he named him Jesus.

It has a sort of “Clinton-esque” feel to it, “…I did not have sexual relations with that woman!” I suppose perhaps they thought using the word intercourse in regards to Mary would be in bad taste. I mean, I guess. Why wouldn’t they use the same ugly word as they used for Adam and Eve?

Also note that “relations” does not denote sexual relations specifically, so it is not even a good substitute. Did Joseph also not speak to her? No relations.


The KJV uses the term “knew” for both Adam and Eve and Mary and Joseph. One of affirmation of the act, the other denying the act. But it has a consistency of language that the newer translations violate.



A Couple New Acquisitions / And an Unusual Rant!


[Heh, I slipped into a rant against mega-churches and prosperity gospel, but I quite enjoyed myself and am leaving it!]

I have had the digital copy for this for a couple of months and I have read the first couple of chapters. The problem was I find it really hard to study in the digital format. Nothing beats being able to shuffle quickly between pages. I also have his more advanced Theology and Sanity. I read a couple of chapters of that last year but felt I needed a primer first. I was really impressed with the scope of his thought, the logical clarity of it.

It was not what passes for “theology” nowadays


You can get Tony Robbins


for that and skip the God stuff if you are going to do something about getting that good life NOW that you know you deserve because… you know… you’re you… and you’re special because… you’re you…cuz’… ah hell, maybe your mother told you you were special, but maybe Dr. Spock Continue reading “A Couple New Acquisitions / And an Unusual Rant!”

Old Style Bible Find and Streamers Over St. Joseph


I love books. I have more books than I can ever hope to read and will buy more anyway so there will never be hope of reading them all. I do e-books as well, and there it is mainly convenience but no art, no tangibles, no love. You can’t smell it, hold it, praise it: you merely get done with it and then push the button that takes you back to your main library.

I have about 350 e-books and I can say one thing about them. They are a lot easier to move than the other 700 or whatever number of real books I have!

Anyway when I was growing up my mother had (probably still has) one of those giant family bibles that used to be popular through I guess the 70’s. There was a declaration page where you filled out your name and dated it. It had the family record of marriages, births, baptisms, grand colorful photos of the famous religious paintings. The gilded pages, the leather cover, the fancy writing at the opening of each book, etc. They were beautiful works of art. Heavy enough to be a bludgeon, yes, but beautiful.

Nowadays the best you can hope for is something in imitation leather. They just don’t make them like that anymore – at least not that I have been able to find.

And I’ve been looking, periodically, for years. Even wanted one as a committed atheist simply on esthetic grounds alone.

Today I found one, and it’s a keeper.



It is a Continue reading “Old Style Bible Find and Streamers Over St. Joseph”

Taking a Look at Atheists

When I was an atheist I was the laziest of atheists. I belonged to no clubs, attended no “freethinkers” debates or functions or anything like that. Although I did have one of those stupid Darwin fish with leg things on the back of my car in the early 90’s…  but I happened upon that in some store. I thought Madalyn Murray O’Hair repugnant, Dawkins and Harris intellectually nonintellectual. Hitchens I liked, not his arguments, but I just enjoyed him in a debate. But I came across these people over a span of decades by chance, and they had nothing to offer except vacuous arguments and grossly erroneous logic.

Atheism meant nothing for the same reason that Nothing means nothing to me. Meaning atheism is a negative concept, it denotes the absence of a something, namely, theism.

And for the same reason I never got involved in attacking the “other side”. Quite frankly I was indifferent to the other side. Until recently I had never had any real contact with either “side” atheist or theist. I simply could not get interested in the Bible – not even enough to attack it. Or to debate with a religious person. I am not claiming it never happened, but I never actively pursued it. But I was an atheist, I did hang out with atheists, and I did belong to a pseudo-philosophical school that was atheist, Objectivism. So I have been exposed to a lot of atheist thinking, including my own of course, and what atheists think of themselves and the other side.

And I have become interested in the whole debate now.

And boy, am I learning a lot. Over at a place called Strange Notions is an article about a much touted study that claims atheists are more intelligent than Continue reading “Taking a Look at Atheists”

A Proper Study Guide


After many failures I think I may have found an adequate study Bible. I had an uneasy feeling reading the other Bibles, their commentaries. What I was seeking was an actual presentation of what the Bible represents by people who assume, or believe, it is true. I was looking for the best argument. What I found in the other versions I tried eluded me for a time, but had an air of the familiar.

When I studied Objectivism I would use many sources but I found that many started from a premise of disbelief. They started from the premise that what they were discussing was wrong and then proceeded from there. The problem was they almost always misrepresented the arguments they would proceed to pick apart. So if the pro-Objectiivst books lacked any criticism, they at least presented the correct argument. And the non-Objectivist presentations while having a balanced criticism (sometimes) were not arguing against the actual positions of Objectivism, or, at best, a distorted statement of the positions.

While not exactly the same thing, the study Bibles I have used thus far have given me a similar feeling. And I realized why. Their starting premise is that the Bible is Continue reading “A Proper Study Guide”