A None Expensive Journey

Emily Dickinson said in one of her poems:
“There is no frigate like a book
To take us lands away,
Nor any coursers like a page
Of prancing poetry.
This traverse may the poorest take
Without oppress of toll;
How frugal is the chariot.
That bears a human soul!”

I’ve never been out of my country. But I can say that I have travel more than many of my friends, for I only need a book to start a trip. I can tell you a lot about some Latin American, North Americans, Irish and Spanish writers whom I like… My favorite writer is Jules Verne, a French visionary man. He is well remembered for his science fiction novels which today are not exactly fiction, like the submarines. But there is something about the British culture that has always called my attention. All of my journeys to British soil have taken place by the hands of Jane Austen, J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Elizabeth Gaskell, Charles Dickens, Mary Wollstonecraft and others.

Jane Austen’s universe is unique and probably my favorite among the other English writers. She wrote about rural South England, the world she knew. Historians agree that she never wrote about something she didn’t see. She was very realistic. Her stories were full of details. Maybe today her writings can be found a little tiresome. Our rhythm of live is quite different from her time, nearly two hundred years ago. Still, she remains one of the best writers in the English Literature and has been translated to many other languages.

But there is a book that can take us even to the beginning of the history of the world. The Bible can take you like a time machine to the first day of the creation or to the beginning of the great conflict in heaven. You can visit in it many of the great empires in the history of the world. Moreover, you can see them throughout a different perspective, the point of view of those who believe in Jehovah. In the Bible you can find whatever you want: love, war, romance, adventure, mystery, action, drama, comedy, poetry. If you feel like falling in love, maybe you should read Jacob and Rachel love’s story or Ruth’s. If you have sense of adventure you should read Israel’s journey in the desert. If you are moved by soldiers, kings and war, I recommend the books of Samuel. For some drama and tension, the book of Esther is perfect. If you like signs, symbols, something a little more sophisticated, the Bible has a variety of books that can satisfy you. All you have to do is read them with a history book as a reference. If you are in need of words of love, hope and friendship, any single book in the New Testament can be good.

The Bible is full of values like hope, friendship, commitment, etc., things this world needs in order to survive. So, the Scriptures are not boring. None who has ever read them can say that. I cannot remember how many times I have read the book of Genesis, Esther, Ruth, 1-3 John, Romans... They are not long and huge stories, thus you can read them in short period of times, not like the writers I mentioned before. The Bible is a treasure even to some who don’t believe any single word of it. Why? Because it is full of human knowledge across the time.

Next time you have a Bible near, open it in the index and choose a book. Then you will be in Dickinson’s frigate in direction to a place that may change your life forever. So, choose wisely.

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