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Noli Me Tangere (Shaps Library of Translations)

A review by Miguel B. Llora:
Noli Me Tangere has rightfully gained a place of national importance since it was completed in its original form - in Spanish - in 1887. Soledad Lacson-Locsin renews its spirit in this easy to read English language translation - complete with helpful footnotes and a warmth that only one close to the material can appreicate. "Noli" as it is affectionately called, forms part of the canon text in Filipino education. Translated into Tagalog, it brings a unique perspective to the life and times of colonial Philippines. Translated into English, it brings it to life for the rest of the world.

As a simple introduction - without giving too much away - the story centers around two characters - Ibarra and Elias and the trials and tribulation surrounding their individual quests for happiness and justice. Standing between all this and the reason for all the discord is a power structure triad of the Church - mostly the Holy Orders; the State mechanism - the Civil Guards, the Alferez, etc.; and Culture - Imperial Culture to be more exact. Locked within this Discourse and the constraints applied on them by all these forces, Ibarra and Elias - forming both sides of Filipino existential angst and liberating spirit - are crushed beneath the wheel. Everyone is a victim.

Rizal was by no means a seer of any kind. However, what rings true then, as it does now, is the way Filipinos create values. In a unique perspective as an emigre, Rizal completed this novel while he was in Spain - with all the joys and sense of perspective that was allowed. If we listen to him now as we listened to him then, perhaps we can transcend our human-all-too-humanes and become what we are capable of becoming.

Written at about the same time as Nietzsche was writting, the message is almost similar yet also very different. While Noli was iconoclastic about the abuses of the church and the almost stunted sense of becoming, Nietzsche took it one step further and formed an indictment against the nihilism of Europe via the message of the church in general. What I am trying to say here is that Rizal and Nietzsche see a sense of becoming stunted by anti-humanist dogma. I salute both, who have gone to the great beyond ahead of us and read their messages of "becoming".

If you wish to peek into the Filipino psyche - as a non -Filipino, there is no better avenue than Rizal's Noli - specially this version. As a Filipino at home as well as a Filipino abroad - we need to re-read Noli and heed its warning. We obviously did not learn about ourselves the way Rizal meant to teach us - the results are self evident. Once again, I have not read a finer translation than this one by Soledad Lacson-Locsin. As a metaphor for the Philippines, Maria Clara could not have looked more beautiful.
For more information and review please click HERE

Holy Bible: New Living Translation, Burgundy Leather Flex

Product Description:

Looking for a gift presentation Bible? The Gift and Award Bible is perfect for church presentation and award programs. A great-value gift Bible that includes Life Application notes and other helpful features:

New Living Translation Text 52 in-text Life Application notes with memory verses Dictionary/concordance Words of Christ in red letter Presentation page Plan of salvation Durable binding.

Review by a Reviewer:
Reviewer: Allen Smalling "Constant Reader," (Chicago, IL United States)
Dollar for Dollar, the New Living Translation (NLT) is probably the best and most intriguing type of Bible I've ever bought. I don't pretend it's my favorite Bible of all--because it isn't really a Bible, it's a paraphrase of the Bible as opposed to a true translation. But I really like it.

Of course, any translation of the Bible is going to be some sort of paraphrase, because different languages use different idioms that have to be rendered into English using different words. There are "strictly literal" bibles like the NASB that go for a word-for-word approach; most bibles are "literal" bibles like the New Revised Standard and New International, the latter in particular taking the "freedom to be idiomatic." ...

The physical presentation of this modestly-priced version is worth remarking on. For fake leather, it looks reasonably genuine, and there are other colors available besides the best-selling black. The type is quite small, but uses a blocky sort of Roman setting that makes reading as easy as possible, even the red letters. The pages are ordinary paper, not "onion-skin." About my only gripe is that the text is too close to the inner margin, but this tome (made in Mainland China) is well-stitched, not the sort of bindery to fall apart quickly upon heavy use.

For very little money I advise the avid Bible reader--or the Bible reader who finds passages in his/her favorite Bible a little hard to fathom (and who among us has not?)--or the just-plain curious to invest in this handsome, intelligent little paraphrase. If your experience is like mine, you'll be surprised at how likeable it is.

For more information and reviews please click HERE.
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