Quote of the Week: Religion

This one’s from American Gods, by Neil Gaiman, a book that ALL of you absolutely HAVE to read, and that’s not a recommendation I make very often. (Which is to say, I usually say “this rocks” when I mean “this rocks if you’re a SF/F fan, or are into that special kind of chick-lit that’s not really for chicks-or at least “empowered” ones- or like weird philosophical concepts; but in this case, I really DO mean everyone.) I thought about putting the somewhat more famous speech that Sam makes to Shadow, the one with the “I believe” list, but then decided this was more…interesting. THAT’s something I should have gone with for elocution, though…or should, I don’t know if it’s over or anything. Of course, I’m too afraid and too lazy to try, so that’s a moot point.

If it makes you more comfortable, you could simply think of it as metaphor. Religions are, by definition, metaphors, after all: God is a dream, a hope, a woman, an ironist, a father, a city, a house of many rooms, a watchmaker who left his prize chronometer in the desert, someone who loves you–even, perhaps, against all evidence, a celestial being whose only interest is to make sure your football team, army, business, or marriage thrives, prospers, and triumphs over all opposition. Religions are places to stand and look and act, vantage points from which to view the world.

By the way, the entire book is very thickly populated grounds for quote-hunters: if you’re determined to avoid a literary treat, try the wiki-quotes page, you’ll certainly find something there. And it might just make you change your mind about reading the book.

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10 thoughts on “Quote of the Week: Religion

  1. One of those books I’ll never lend a soul. I actually have an extended edition of the book. Probably, the only fantasy novel I’ve loved (Yeah, sue me).

    And yep, a very very quotable book too and the characters…brilliant.

    I’ll stop now.

  2. I like Neil Gaiman. But he’s a bit, for the lack of a better word, inconsistent. I’m presently ploughing through the Sandman series, and it keeps veering between jaw dropping and ho hum. He does have an amazing knack for expressing amazing ideas in a few sentences, which I guess makes him the master that he is of the graphic novel format.

    Do you have the actual book btw? I have American Gods on eBook, but I try to avoid eBooks as much as I can.

    Oh and btw, Elocution is next sem, I should know- I’m one of the speaking events coords. πŸ™‚ You should def give it a shot.

  3. Sorry, I don’t have the actual book. I finished Sandman relatively recently-only as an ebook,though, the entire collection on paper costs roughly 3k*8= 24,000 bucks or so in landmark. (I think) Or something similiarly unaffordable. And I pretty much liked the whole thing, although some parts were clearly not as good as others.

    And elocution…maybe I will. I actually considered trying last year, too, but…oh well. Let’s see if I can summon up the courage. πŸ™‚

  4. Yep, I read Sandman on eBook too. What else can us poor college kids do? I don’t mind comics in e-format at all, just the normal books I’d rather hold in my hand.

    Have you tried some of Gaiman’s other (way way shorter) graphic novels btw? They’re bloody good. Especially the ones in which Dave McKean does the illustrations (Black Orchid, Signal to Noise and so on). Some surreal shit. They’re like the Lennon and McCartney of comic books. πŸ™‚

  5. Wish I had the real thing, but the ebook’ll do just as well.

    I’m not in insti right now, get back on Monday or so. But do remind me and I’ll send them off on gtalk or something. I’m quite magnanimous, I share them on DC too. Hehe.

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