In The Beginning There Was Story

According to the Gospel of John, in the beginning there was The Word and The Word was good.

What does John mean by “The Word?”

Some people have chosen to interpret The Word as just a metaphor for God. They equate The Word with God as if they are synonymous. I think John was trying to illustrate a truth here. Many of us seemed to have missed the point.

In the beginning there was the word or story. Story is the start of time. I believe that stories have been told long before human beings even learned how to talk. We have always told stories. The most primitive humans probably traced patterns into the sand to tell their stories. The probably used gesture and sound effects in their storytelling.

I believe that story transcends time. Any story ever written stands outside of time. We can open a book randomly to any page and start reading, and the action in that part of the story, is happening in the here and now. As we read it, it is happening. This is true for period pieces that take place in the past or science fiction that takes place in the future.

A few other authors have tried to explain this connection between story and our perception of time. Shakespeare wrote that the world is but a stage and that we are all actors who play our role. He goes on to tell his audience that we all play many roles in our lives. It is a beautiful metaphor. But taken a step further, it means that we are all characters in a large story. A story that includes everything and everytime.

These two authors are highly regarded in our time. The Bible and the collective works of Shakespeare are the two most widely read works in our time. The both touch on the importance of story. Both of these works have managed to transcend time as well. I don’t think this is a coincidence. I think we need to read critically and see what these authors were trying to tell us.

In the beginning, there was story. Story is happening right now and it is always happening. Story is the nature of reality. Everything is story. A few writers have known this for years. We need to listen to them.

Check out the label on the sidebar to read all my posts on Story. And then surf over to Thoughtful Cacophony to read the excellent quotations I have collected about this topic from a wide variety of sources. Thanks for joining me on Storied Thursdays.