LISTEN: Art and the Divine, Pt 4; Reading a Story, Pt 4 (Literature and Spirituality #4 with Daniel Whyte III)

Daniel Whyte III
Daniel Whyte III

Literature is defined as “imaginative or creative writing, especially of recognized artistic value.” Spirituality is defined as “the quality or state of being concerned with religion or religious matters.” The purpose of this podcast is to examine how these two subjects intersect with one another and how they relate to our lives.

Our passage from the Word of God today is Psalm 139:16 which reads: “Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect; and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them.”

Our quote today is from Francine Rivers. He said: “I want to see Christian fiction speak to the hard and real issues that tear people’s lives apart. We need writers who are willing to ask the hard questions and go through the soul-searching and agonizing to find answers – and present these stories with skill that surpasses the general market. Some of the greatest works or art and literature were rendered by Christians. I believe God is at work in these areas now.”

In this podcast, we are using as our texts: “Literature and Spirituality” by Yaw Adu-Gyamfi and Mark Ray Schmidt, and “Literature: An Introduction to Fiction, Poetry, Drama, and Writing” by X. J. Kennedy and Dana Gioia. If you enjoy this podcast, please feel free to purchase any one of these books from our website.

Our first topic for today is “Art and the Divine, Part 4” from the book, “Literature and Spirituality” by Yaw Adu-Gyamfi and Mark Ray Schmidt.

Rudolf Steiner said, “Art is the daughter of the divine.” From a certain perspective, he is right. To add another step, religion is also the daughter of the divine. When we creatively explore and experience things beyond the immediate physical world, a metaphorical child is born. Sometimes that child is religion, and sometimes it is a work of art. In either case, we are building and delighting in new connections. And, in either case, our inner selves are expanding.

This anthology of literary works gives a taste of some of the ways that writers have explored, shared, dismissed, or argued about the ultimate, spiritual questions of life. The first goal is to give a range of works that shows authors can take us beyond our immediate, daily experience. The mere exposure to these works is intellectually enriching, emotionally expanding, and suggestive of new ways that the reader can consider the connection between the spiritual and literature.

Our second topic for today is “Reading a Story, Part 4” from the book, “Literature: An Introduction to Fiction, Poetry, Drama, and Writing” by X. J. Kennedy and Dana Gioia.

Types of Short Fiction
Modern literary fiction in English has been dominated by two forms: the novel and the short story. The two have many elements in common. Perhaps we will be able to define the short story more meaningfully – for it has traits more essential than just a particular length – if first, for comparison, we consider some related varieties of fiction: the fable, the parable, and the tale. Ancient forms whose origins date back to the time of word-of-mouth storytelling, the fable and the tale are relatively simple in structure; in them we can plainly see elements also found in the short story (and in the novel).

Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry which publishes a monthly magazine called The Torch Leader. He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University School of Divinity. He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica for over twenty-seven years. God has blessed their union with seven children. Find out more at Follow Daniel Whyte III on Twitter @prophetdaniel3 or on Facebook.

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