This post isn’t what you might think it would be about, based on the subject line above. Let me try and explain…
Over the weekend, I ended up seeing a large number of old books from the childhoods of myself and my siblings. I had thought many of them were gone, but I’m glad I was able to get my hands on some of them again. And, several cast-offs that my brother did not want to continue to keep ended up going to me instead, because I can rarely resist a further book to add to the collection (though I know it’s a horrible and pernicious disease).
One book I was not that surprised to see he was getting rid of: a bible that he had from his childhood, which was given to him at the First Baptist Church that he, myself, and my mother attended for a brief time after her divorce from my father. (I remember it well, unfortunately…the church itself, and the daycare attached to it where some rather abusive behavior occurred, is about a quarter of a mile up the hill from me at present.) He was given the bible, but I was not because I was too young–even though I’m just over a year younger than him.
That book fascinated me for a variety of reasons, mainly because it was a book…but, it also had some wonderful pictures in it, particularly in the back of it. One of those pictures especially fasinated me, and it is the picture below, which I suspect Tess Dawson and a relatively small number of other modern polytheists might recognize right off the bat.
This gets posted on a lot of Christian websites (it’s where the link I got it from is located!), and it appears in bibles and such as well. Why? It’s a Canaanite altar that is located at Megiddo, the place where the “end of the world” is going to be happening eventually, according to their belief system. Because I couldn’t read at the time, and wasn’t allowed to look at the book very much (where, I’ll note, it was included in the back just after a “timeline” that lists some actual archaeological matters known from the ancient Near East, and then inserts the rather mythical and mostly legendary histories of the Hebrew Bible into that timeline, as if any of it was actually historical), I never really knew what it was.
But, I can tell you what I thought it was.
I assumed it was where god must have lived. I was wrong about which god, it turned out, but I was otherwise basically “right”!
Anyway, for almost that reason alone, I couldn’t let that book get shuffled off to some used bookstore or thrift shop, so it is now in my possession as well. The version of the christian bible used in it is the King James Version, alas…but, oh well. I don’t think I have one of those necessarily handy otherwise, so now I do.