The miserly Ebenezer Scrooge is a cold-hearted man of business and has little time for the good humor and charity of the Christmas season. But that's about to change. A visit from his deceased business partner sets in motion a night in which Scrooge is visited by the ghosts of Christmas past, present, and future. Will his listen to their messages? Will he heed their warnings? Ebenezer Scrooge is about to take a Christmas journey that he won't soon forget.
Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (1844–1900) was a nineteenth-century German philosopher. He wrote critical texts on religion, morality, contemporary culture, philosophy and science, using a distinctive German language style and displaying a fondness for aphorism. Nietzsche's influence remains substantial within and beyond philosophy, notably in existentialism and postmodernism.
Thus Spake Zarathustra (Also sprach Zarathustra), is a work composed in four parts between 1883 and 1885. Much of the work deals with ideas such as the "eternal recurrence of the same", the parable on the "death of God", and the "prophecy" of the Overman, which were first introduced in The Gay Science. Described by Nietzsche himself as "the deepest ever written", the book is a dense and esoteric treatise on philosophy and morality, featuring as protagonist a fictionalized Zarathustra. A central irony of the text is that the style of the Bible is used by Nietzsche to present ideas of his which fundamentally oppose Judaeo-Christian morality and tradition.
Platt, Rutherford Hayes
The Conflict of Adam and Eve with Satan is a Christian pseudepigraphical work found in Ge'ez, translated from an Arabic original and thought to date from the 5th or 6th century AD. It was first translated from the Ethiopic version into German by August Dillmann. It was first translated into English by S. C. Malan from the German of Ernest Trumpp. The first half of Malan's translation is included as the "First Book of Adam and Eve" and the "Second Book of Adam and Eve" in The Lost Books of the Bible and the Forgotten Books of Eden. Books 1 and 2 begin immediately after the expulsion from the Garden of Eden and end with the testament and translation of Enoch. Great emphasis is placed in Book 1 on Adam's sorrow and helplessness in the world outside the garden.
Bede, The Venerable
Bede's Ecclesiastical History of England is a work in Latin by Bede on the history of the Christian Churches in England, and of England generally; its main focus is on the conflict between Roman and Celtic Christianity. It is considered to be one of the most important original references on Anglo-Saxon history. It is believed to have been completed in 731, when Bede was approximately 59 years old. Divided into five books, it covers the history of England, ecclesiastical and political, from the time of Julius Caesar to the date of its completion (731).
The History of the English Church and People has a clear polemical and didactic purpose. Bede sets out, not just to tell the story of the English, but to advance his views on politics and religion. In political terms he is a partisan of his native Northumbria, amplifying its role in English history over and above that of Mercia, its great southern rival. While Bede is loyal to Northumbria, he shows an even greater attachment to the Irish and the Irish Celtic missionaries, whom he considers to be far more effective and dedicated than their rather complacent English counterparts. His final preoccupation is over the precise date of Easter, which he writes about at length. It is here, and only here, that he ventures some criticism of St Cuthbert and the Irish missionaries, who celebrated the event, according to Bede, at the wrong time. In the end he is pleased to note that the Irish Church was saved from error by accepting the correct date for Easter.
Chesterton, G. K.
The Author Gilbert Keith Chesterton was born in London, England on the 29th of May, 1874. Though he considered himself a mere "rollicking journalist," he was actually a prolific and gifted writer in virtually every area of literature. A man of strong opinions and enormously talented at defending them, his exuberant personality nevertheless allowed him to maintain warm friendships with people--such as George Bernard Shaw and H. G. Wells--with whom he vehemently disagreed. Chesterton had no difficulty standing up for what he believed. He was one of the few journalists to oppose the Boer War. His 1922 "Eugenics and Other Evils" attacked what was at that time the most progressive of all ideas, the idea that the human race could and should breed a superior version of itself. In the Nazi experience, history demonstrated the wisdom of his once "reactionary" views.
Chesterton wrote several works of Christian apologetics, the best known of which are "Othodoxy", "Heretics", and "The Everlasting Man".
Reputed as Eliot’s favourite novel Silas Marner is set in the early years of the 19th century. Marner, a weaver, is a member of a small congregation in Lantern Yard. Falsely accused of a crime he didn’t commit, he leaves his home and lives a solitary life near the village of Raveloe. Dedicating his life to weaving and hoarding gold for the next fifteen years, circumstances beyond his control shape his destiny and help to restore his faith in humanity.
The Dhammapada is is a Buddhist scripture, containing 423 verses in 26 categories. According to tradition, these are verses spoken by the Buddha on various occasions, most of which deal with ethics. It is is considered one of the most important pieces of Theravada literature. Despite this, the Dhammapada is read by many Mahayana Buddhists and remains a very popular text across all schools of Buddhism.
In Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion, philosopher David Hume examines whether belief in God can be rational. The work takes the form of a debate between three characters: Cleanthes, who argues that the existence and nature of God can be empirically verified; Demea, who argues that God is completely beyond human knowledge; and Philo, a philosophical skeptic widely thought to represent Hume's own beliefs. Much of the debate centers around Cleanthes' presentation of the analogical argument from design. According to this argument, the complexity and beauty of the universe can only be explained by inferring an intelligent designer, in the same way that one would infer a designer if one came across an intricately complicated machine. Philo presents several objections to this argument, with rejoinders by Cleanthes and occasional interjections by Demea.
A primer for those interested in the basic philosophy, beliefs and secrets of the Rosicrucians.
Christopher "Kit" Marlowe (baptised 26 February 1564?30 May 1593) was an English dramatist, poet, and translator of the Elizabethan era. The foremost Elizabethan tragedian before William Shakespeare, he is known for his magnificent blank verse, his overreaching protagonists, and his own untimely death.
The Jew of Malta (1589) is an original story of religious conflict, intrigue, and revenge, set against a backdrop of the struggle for supremacy between Spain and the Ottoman Empire in the Mediterranean. The Jew of Malta is considered to have been a major influence on William Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice.
The play contains a prologue in which the character Machiavel, a Senecan ghost based on Niccolò Machiavelli, introduces "the tragedy of a Jew."
Hall, Herbert J.
A very wise physician has said that “every illness has two parts—what it is, and what the patient thinks about it.” What the patient thinks about it is often more important and more troublesome than the real disease. What the patient thinks of life, what life means to him is also of great importance and may be the bar that shuts out all real health and happiness. The following pages are devoted to certain ideals of life which I would like to give to my patients, the long-time patients who have especially fallen to my lot.
Text of famous inspirational lecture and biography of Russell Conwell, a Baptist minister and Temple University Founder .
Chesterton, G. K.
The Ball and the Cross is G. K. Chesterton's third novel. In the introduction Martin Gardner notes that it is a "mixture of fantasy, farce and theology." Gardner continues: "Evan MacIan is a tall, dark-haired, blue-eyed Scottish Highlander and a devout Roman Catholic.... James Turnbull is a short, red-haired, gray-eyed Scottish Lowlander and a devout but naive atheist.... The two meet when MacIan smashes the window of the street office where Turnbull publishes an atheist journal. This act of rage occurs when MacIan sees posted on the shop's window a sheet that blasphemes the Virgin Mary, presumably implying she was an adulteress who gave birth to an illegitimate Jesus. When MacIan challenges Turnbull to a duel to the death, Turnbull is overjoyed. For twenty years no one had paid the slightest attention to his Bible bashing. Now at last someone is taking him seriously! Most of the rest of the story is a series of comic events in which the two enemies wander about seeking a spot for their duel." MacIan and Turnbull become friends as they protect each other from interference from the modern world, which has trivialized their views over life's most important question (the existence of God) and outlawed their honorable duel. The irony is heightened when they both fall in love with ladies who happen to hold to their opponent's deepest convictions. Professor Lucifer and a Bulgarian monk also play important roles in this perennially relevant story.
Volunteers bring you 12 recordings of Music On Christmas Morning by Anne Bronte.
Published in the 1846 collection Poems By Currer, Ellis and Acton Bell under Anne's nom de plume 'Acton Bell'.
This was the Fortnightly Poetry project for November 29th, 2009.
Volunteers bring you 12 recordings of Past Days by Emily Brontë . This was the Weekly Poetry project for November 28th, 2010
Anne Brontë was a British novelist and poet, the youngest member of the Brontë literary family. She wrote a volume of poetry with her sisters (Poems by Currer, Ellis, and Acton Bell, 1846) and in short succession she wrote two novels. Agnes Grey, based upon her experiences as a governess, was published in 1847. Her second and last novel, The Tenant of Wildfell Hall appeared in 1848. Anne's life was cut short with her death of pulmonary tuberculosis when she was 29 years old. She published under the androgynous pen name Acton Bell.
Please note, at the time of this poetry project, the Gutenburg index was mis-interpreted and this poem was mistakenly attributed to Emily Brontë / Ellis Bell. The recorded LibriVox introductions will reflect this mistake.
van Dyke, Henry
You know the story of the Three Wise Men of the East, and how they travelled from far away to offer their gifts at the manger-cradle in Bethlehem. But have you ever heard the story of the Other Wise Man, who also saw the star in its rising, and set out to follow it, yet did not arrive with his brethren in the presence of the young child Jesus? Of the great desire of this fourth pilgrim, and how it was denied, yet accomplished in the denial; of his many wanderings and the probations of his soul; of the long way of his seeking, and the strange way of his finding, the One whom he sought—I would tell the tale as I have heard fragments of it in the Hall of Dreams, in the palace of the Heart of Man. (Summary written by Henry van Dyke.)
Faith and reason, love and virtue, morality and mortality! In these two short volumes the famous novelist, essayist, and playwright, Upton Sinclair, confided his most prized worldly wisdom for generations to come. His kind and witty personal advice both provokes and enlightens page by page.
George MacDonald, a Scottish pastor, wrote these short poems, one for each day of the year, to help him with the severer misfortune he was experiencing. The poems are filled with hope and promises of Christ, yet, he also writes about his doubts. These poems are wonderful to listen to for people of any religion.
Eastman, Charles Alexander (Ohiyesa)
"We also have a religion which was given to our forefathers, and has been handed down to us their children. It teaches us to be thankful, to be united, and to love one another! We never quarrel about religion."
"The Curtezan unmasked or, the Whoredomes of Jezebel Painted to the Life: With Antidotes against them, or Heavenly Julips to cool Men in the Fever of Lust" is a fire-and-brimstone polemic by "A Spiritual Physician" to persuade young men not to succumb to harlotry and its accompanying perils.
Guyon, Jeanne Marie Bouvier de la Motte
Jeanne-Marie Bouvier de la Motte-Guyon (commonly known as Madame Guyon) (April 13, 1648 - June 9, 1717) was a French mystic and one of the key advocates of Quietism. Quietism was considered heretical by the Roman Catholic Church, and she was imprisoned from 1695 to 1703 after publishing a book on the topic, A Short and Easy Method of Prayer. This translation is by Thomas Taylor Allen was first published in 1897. Allen's dates are unknown.
Schmid, Christoph von
James is the king's gardener and he deeply enjoys caring for and cultivating flowers. He teaches his daughter Mary many principles of godliness through the flowers. One day Mary is falsely accused of stealing, and the penalty is death. Through many trials and hardships, Mary learns of the goodness of God, the blessing of praying for her enemies, how to consider her trials as a joy, and true forgiveness.
Mr. Brooks, in this compilation, has endeavored to select those incidents and practical remarks from Mr. Müller's Narratives, that show in an unmistakeable way, both to believers and unbelievers, the secret of believing prayer, the manifest hand of a living God, and His unfailing response, in His own time and way, to every petition which is according to His will.
Volunteers bring you 9 recordings of The Feast of Lights by Emma Lazarus. This was the Weekly Poetry project for December 18, 2011.
Hanukkah, or the Festival of Lights, is the Jewish festival commemorating the rededication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem during the 2nd century BCE.
This poem celebrating Hanukkah was written by Emma Lazarus, a Jewish American poet. Emma Lazarus also wrote 'The New Colossus,' a sonnet which is inscribed on a plaque on the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty.
Padre Ignacio has been the pastor of California mission Santa Ysabel del Mar for twenty years. In 1855 a stranger rides into the mission bringing news and a spiritual crisis. It's really more of a novella than a novel.
Tennyson, Alfred, Lord
A collection of Tennyson's poetry.
King James Version
Volunteers bring you eight different recordings of Psalm 133, to celebrate United Nations Day. This was the weekly poetry project for the week of October 22nd, 2006.
One great universal law runs through the realm of nature. Our Saviour gave it in a sentence: 'First the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the ear.' It is with the desire to show that the same law rules in another of God's creations—The Bible—that this little volume has been prepared. The Bible has as literally 'grown' as has an oak tree; and probably there is no more likeness between the Bible as we know it to-day and its earliest beginning, than we find between the mighty tree, and the acorn from which it sprang. The subject is so vast that we have not attempted anything beyond the briefest outline. Our purpose has been merely to give some idea of the origin of the Bible books, up to the measure of our present light upon the subject, and also to show the purpose for which they were written. But if our readers, by seeing something of the wonder and glory of the Holy Scriptures, are able to catch a glimpse of the Creator's mind behind the whole, our work will not have been in vain. (Foreword, by Mildred Duff)
Langford, Norman F.
In a very real and interesting way, The King Nobody Wanted tells the story of Jesus. Where the actual words of the Bible are used, they are from the King James Version. But the greater part of the story is told in the words of every day.
Rossetti, Christina G.
Volunteers bring you 12 recordings of Long Ago by Christina G. Rossetti. This was the Weekly Poetry project for December 9, 2012.
Christina Georgina Rossetti (5 December 1830 – 29 December 1894) was an English poet who wrote a variety of romantic, devotional, and children's poems. She is perhaps best known for her long poem Goblin Market, her love poem Remember, and for the words of the Christmas carol In the Bleak Midwinter.
Volunteers bring you 13 recordings of Christmas Morning by Eugene Field. This was the Fortnightly Poetry project for December 12, 2010.
Eugene Field, Sr. (September 2, 1850 – November 4, 1895) was an American writer, best known for his children's poetry and humorous essays.
King James Version (KJV)
The Sermon On The Mount is one of the teachings in the ministry of Jesus Christ. In The Sermon On The Mount is found many sayings and important precepts held by Christian churches, sayings such as The Beatitudes, The Lord's Prayer, and other teachings about forgiveness, giving, and the "Golden Rule" about doing unto others as you would have them do unto you. Men such as Tolstoy and Gandhi found special meaning in The Sermon On The Mount, and Christians have read and listened to this important portion of scripture for centuries.
The Bible version used for this reading is the King James Version. This traditional Bible has been praised for its poetic beauty, imagery, and its use for memorization of Bible verses.
Ukawsaw Gronniosaw, also known as James Albert, (born ca. 1705 - 1775) was a freed slave and autobiographer. His autobiography is considered the first published by an African in Britain. Gronniosaw's autobiography was produced in Kidderminster in the late 1760s. Its full title is A Narrative of the Most remarkable Particulars in the Life of James Albert Ukawsaw Gronniosaw, an African Prince, As related by himself. It was the first Slave narrative in the English language. Published in Bath in 1772, it gives a vivid account of Gronniosaw's life, from his capture in Africa through slavery to a life of poverty in Colchester and Kidderminster. It is devoid of the anti-slavery backlash ubiquitous in subsequent slave narratives.
"Jesus of Nazareth, a Biography, by John Mark," recognizes the author of the second Gospel as that "John, whose surname was Mark" (Acts 15:37), whom Barnabas chose as companion when he sailed for Cyprus on his second missionary journey. In making use of the new title, the plan of the Editor is to present "The Gospel: According to Mark" as it would be printed were it written in the twentieth rather than the first century. (Introduction from Forward, by D. Appleton and Co, Publishers, 1922)
Hannah Trager published Pictures of Jewish Home-Life Fifty Years Ago in 1926, so the book is a portrait of day to day life for a Jewish family in Jerusalem around 1876. In each chapter, Mr. Jacobs reads a letter from his cousins living in Jerusalem many years earlier, each one teaching his family and friends about a different holiday or tradition of their people.
Starrett, Helen Ekin
Helen Ekin Starrett, journalist, mother of two daughters, grandmother of seven granddaughters and teacher to many young girls at the Starrett School for Girls offers lessons in life and religion to girls about to "pass out from the guardianship of home into life with its duties and trials".
Swinburne, Algernon Charles
Volunteers bring you 9 recordings of The Higher Pantheism in a Nutshell by Algernon Charles Swinburne. This was the Fortnightly Poetry project for September 18, 2011.
Algernon Charles Swinburne was an English poet, playwright, novelist, and critic. He invented the roundel form, wrote several novels, and contributed to the famous Eleventh Edition of the Encyclopaedia Britannica. He was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature in every year from 1903 to 1907 and again in 1909.
World English Bible
To celebrate Easter, Volunteers bring you nine different recordings of various psalms from the World English Bible. This was the weekly poetry project for the week of April 9th, 2006.
Haggard, H. Rider
This is the story of Miriam, an orphan Christian woman living in Rome in the first century. She falls in love with a Roman officer, but knows that her Jewish childhood playmate loves her too- and will do anything in order to get her love in return.
Haggard, H. Rider
Described by the author, best known for his King Solomon's Mines, as "a tale of victorious faith," this story begins on a Sunday afternoon in an English church. Most of the book, though, is set in Africa, and the adventure story is as engaging as any of Haggard's African tales. What makes this one different is the religious question: What has happened to miracles in the church? Is there any power left in Jesus' promise, "Whoso that believeth in me, the works that I do he shall do also, and whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do"?
Matilda Sophia Hanson, whose father has recently died in their country of Barbadoes in the West Indies, must live for a time with family friends in England. The Harewood family is astonished at how spoiled, rude, and uneducated the child is. However, with seemingly endless patience and love, they help Matilda work to conquer her bad temper, and become a sensible, good, and well-informed young lady. This story reminds children and adults alike, though you have many battles with yourself, you must never relinquish hope and be assured you will find every victory easier than the last. When you find pride rising in your heart, think on your ignorance and it will make you humble. When you are inclined to be angry, remember the kindness of those around you and it will make you bear with the present vexation. If at any time you are frustrated in any pursuit, remember, although you have many faults, you have some merit also, and may therefore reasonably hope to attain more.
Tip Lewis is a mischievous, unpromising scamp. One Sunday, a visiting Sunday school teacher tells his mission class how her minister had grown up in similarly bad circumstances, but had decided to follow God and had never regretted it. Tip decides to try to BE somebody, like that minister did. He is given a Bible - his lamp - to use as a guide, and from there, his life begins to change.
Tozer, Aiden Wilson
"As the heart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God." This thirst for an intimate relationship with God, claims A.W. Tozer, is not for a select few, but should be the experience of every follower of Christ. But, he asserts, it is all too rare when believers have become conditioned by tradition to accept standards of mediocrity, and the church struggles with formality and worldliness. Using examples from Scripture and from the lives of saints who lived with this thirst for God, Tozer sheds light on the path to a closer walk with God.
Martin Luther strove to give a verse by verse exegesis of the Epistle to the Galatians in the work. The original work, written in Latin in around 1516, was much longer. This translation by Theodore Graebner strove to produce a copy of the work in a format and with wording much more applicable to the general English-speaking American public.
The Golden Bough: A Study in Magic and Religion is a wide-ranging comparative study of mythology and religion, written by Scottish anthropologist Sir James George Frazer (1854–1941). It offered a modernist approach, discussing religion dispassionately as a cultural phenomenon, rather than from a theological perspective. Its thesis is that old religions were fertility cults that centered around the worship of, and periodic sacrifice of, a sacred king. This king was the incarnation of a dying and reviving god, a solar deity who underwent a mystic marriage to a goddess of the earth, who died at the harvest, and was reincarnated in the spring. Frazer claims that this legend is central to almost all of the world's mythologies. The germ for Frazer's thesis was the pre-Roman priest-king at the fane of Nemi, who was ritually murdered by his successor. While most of Frazer's theories (such as those on the nature of magic) have subsequently been exploded, his influence on contemporaneus European literature was immense. (From Wikipedia)
In 1623, Francis Bacon expressed his aspirations and ideas in New Atlantis. Released in 1627, this was his creation of an ideal land where people were kind, knowledgeable, and civic-minded. Part of this new land was his perfect college, a vision for our modern research universities. Islands he had visited may have served as models for his ideas.
Devotions upon Emergent Occasions is a 1624 prose work by the English writer John Donne. It is a series of reflections that were written as Donne recovered from a serious illness, believed to be either typhus or relapsing fever. (Donne does not clearly identify the disease in his text.) The work consists of twenty-three parts describing each stage of the sickness. Each part is further divided into a Meditation, an Expostulation, and a Prayer.
The seventeenth meditation is perhaps the best-known part of the work. It contains the following passage:
"No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main. If a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as if a manor of thy friend's or of thine own were: any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind, and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee."
Loyola, St. Ignatius
This account of the life of St. Ignatius, dictated by himself to Father Gonzalez, is a most valuable record of the great Founder of the Society of Jesus. It, more than any other work, gives an insight into the spiritual life of St. Ignatius. Few works in ascetical literature, except the writings of St. Teresa and St. Augustine, impart such a knowledge of the soul.The saint in his narrative always refers to himself in the third person, and this mode of speech has here been retained. Many persons who have neither the time, nor, perhaps, the inclination, to read larger works, will read, we trust, with pleasure and profit this autobiography. Ignatius, as he lay wounded in his brother's house, read the lives of the saints to while away the time. Touched by grace, he cried, "What St. Francis and St. Dominic have done, that, by God's grace, I will do." May this little book, in like manner, inspire its readers with the desire of imitating St. Ignatius. This autobiography is a valuable key for the understanding of his Spiritual Exercises. It was kept in the archives for about 150 years
Berkeley uses Hylas as his primary contemporary philosophical adversary, John Locke. A Hylas is featured in Greek mythology and the name Hylas is derived from an ancient Greek word for "matter" which Hylas argues for in the dialogues. Philonous translates as "lover of mind." In The First Dialogue, Hylas expresses his disdain for skepticism, adding that he has heard Philonous to have "maintained the most extravagant opinion... namely, that there is no such thing as material substance in the world." Philonous argues that it is actually Hylas who is the skeptic and that he can prove it. Thus, a philosophical battle of wit begins.
Brooks, David Marshall
Plain speaking is necessary in any discussion of religion, for if the freethinker attacks the religious dogmas with hesitation, the orthodox believer assumes that it is with regret that the freethinker would remove the crutch that supports the orthodox. And all religious beliefs are "crutches" hindering the free locomotive efforts of an advancing humanity. There are no problems related to human progress and happiness in this age which any theology can solve, and which the teachings of freethought cannot do better and without the aid of encumbrances.
This book tells of a girl named Alice falling through a rabbit hole into a fantasy world populated by peculiar, anthropomorphic creatures.