Wednesday, July 09, 2014

The magic is in the telling ~ Dr. Jacob L. Wright

Pic from Pinterest

This is partially true for me because sometimes it is the one who is telling who holds the magic.  

Words are my weakness.  In general, I gravitate towards people who write or speak well.  There are many who are able to say what I feel better than I would have been able to express.  Facebook has shown me that I am not alone in my thoughts and feelings. Kindred spirits abound.  I do not need to know them personally.  Just knowing that there are others like me is enough.

I have just completed a six-week online course conducted by Emory University.  I discovered this when someone introduced Coursera to me and I learnt a new acronym: MOOC (Massive Open Online Course).

Never would I imagine that studying again would be on my agenda.  I have to admit it was the title "The Bible's Prehistory, Purpose and Political Future" that lured me to sign up.  In fact, I had forgotten about it until a reminder appeared in my email.

Anyway, from 26 May until yesterday, I was immersed in another world whenever I logged on to Coursera.  I did my best to keep up and follow the forum discussions as well as stay up-to-date with all the work. I did fall behind when I took a short holiday but I caught up as soon as I was able.

Dr. Jacob L. Wright, Associate Professor of Hebrew Bible, brilliantly led us through the course.  His impressive credentials and passion for the historical value of the bible came through in all the videos and/or interviews he did.  

It was such a treat to be able to hear him expound on the manifold aspects of the prehistory, purpose and political future with such ease and authority.

My favourite interviews were the ones with Professor Tamara Cohn Eskenazi.  I loved how she made her views so clearly and, dare I use this word, flavorful.

At the end, I was left with a desire to know more and this is what studying is all about.  It leads you to the next step and onward because there is always something to learn every step of the way. 

I had hoped that more of the New Testament would have been part of the course but it was wishful thinking because I am now informed that the "Bible" for Jews (as well as for early Christians) is the Old Testament. *Hat tip to Dr. Wright for clearing this up.

Although I started out very much a novice, Dr. Wright does cater to people like me.  He doesn't forget that we are participants as well.  This is what makes him endearing.  He doesn't neglect the ones who are new to the subject while being able to easily engage the others who have a deeper understanding of it all.  For this, I found the course extremely gratifying.

At the end of it all, I believe that I might have shifted the knowledge notch just a teensy weensy bit and I have found some answers to questions that were dangling somewhere in my head from I don't know when.  I know much more now than six weeks ago.  

Hence, the magic is in the telling.  Dr. Wright has that magic.  


  1. Yes! Absolutely! It was wonderful.

  2. I didn't realise that someone had replied here. Thanks for coming by, Susanb59.

    Did you sign up for any other courses?