I know we are on quite a tangent but the richness of the Bible depends a great deal on how you approach it. If you read its denotation (what it says) it seems like the random semi-coherent ramblings of delusional followers of a psychopathic God but if you try to understand its connotation (what it means) there is fertile ground for thought. What are the metaphors? The brightest Bible scholar I met in fact was an Atheist; he could talk for hours about how most people misunderstand large swaths of the Bible because they know nothing about the culture and idioms of the Biblical era and the liberties taken by interpreters. I think that the real meaning of some Bible stories have largely been lost over the centuries but sometimes we can get a glimpse of the original meaning when we look at the versions of the stories in other cultures and religions.
Like many things, the Bible can be approached in a dull literal manner or it can be approached scholarly and philosophical manner.
I agree that knowledge of the Bible is part of being educated. It is part of our Western cultural heritage. Someone looking at this intellectually would also read Christian apologetics and criticism as well as comparative religion.
There were a number of things that brought about the end of the dark ages and the start of the modern era. The Gutenberg Bible was one, the Protestant Reformation challenging the RCC's authority was another. The introduction of Arabic numbers (which the movable type printing printing press helped spread) and recognition of negative numbers facilitated mathematical calculation. I'd argue that the fall of Byzantine Empire and the rediscovery of classical works that had been lost for centuries in the rest of Europe as the biggest catalyst for change.
Colleen - I have seen you around the site and normally you give good advice but you have drawn a blank here. I think it is a mistake to assume that everyone who tries to read classical books is as ignorant as you think. Regarding the Bible - Nothing I type here is meant to hurt your feelings. Have you read the Bible. History proves that until the Bible was put into the hands of everyman (Gutenberg Press) society was pretty barbaric and women were treated like slaves or worse. The Bible is responsible for the breakthroughs in science, medicine, astronomy, math, social justice, law etc. etc..
I like your comment leatherneck, but to instill some self-confidence that one is smart , is to know that your not stupid!!! Then to share is the key, and communication is the struggel, being able to show your not dumb.Also your dealing with people who usally don't get it. not replying to your comment cause it's great , I was responding to How to feel intelectually smart, so self confidence comes when you are gifted in shareing that wisdom others don't have.
You must be a great communicator. There are plenty of fools out there, so even stupid can impress them and their everywhere. You ain't gotta know much just know how to deal with normal people, don't get around those know-it-alls. And you'll be an Intellect.
Well the most important thing is to have selfconfidence. I hate it when someone i know get a bad grade and completely gives up. Oh and also, grades dont show how smart you are. so yeah, if you beleive your smart, then your starting oout great:)
You know what? That was rude of me - I apologize...however, I stick by my previous statement that the bible doesn't make you smarter....I find that it actually hinders people and denies them the right to think for themselves.
Read the Bible and as many classics as you can. Here are some websites that have free books and free mp3 downloads of books, so you can listen in the car. Reading new stuff is ok but use the new as a break.
This, friends, is the opposite of being an intellectual. Sorry, but the bible doesn't make you any smarter, and the classics are bound to confuse an average person more than it will help them.
I have read the bible - I was raised in a Christian home...it taught me nothing intelligent, unless your version of intelligence is to kill, maim, and disfigure those who disagree with you.
Intellectuals think about things at a deeper level than other people. They critically and analytically look at things others take for granted and find different ways of thinking.
Withdraw my statement and apology accepted. Where do you "find that it actually hinders people and denies them the right to think for themselves."?
Coleen - Where are you getting the idea that the Bible's message is to kill, maim, and disfigure those who disagree with you?
It's because my brother says he's one...
Being able to spell intellectual?
Intelligence, for starters.