Fabled Kings & Creators

Posted on October 4, 2020

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Good Sunday Morning, Freethinking Friends! Welcome to the Sunday Service.

I hope you are in good health and in good spirits on this fine day.

Last week, I wrote about one of my favorite Biblical scholars, Dr. Francesca Stavrakopoulou, Professor of Hebrew Bible and Ancient Religion at University of Exeter. I drew attention to her examination of the evidence of the polytheism practiced by ancient Israelites.

Borage seedling, The Garden of Eddy, 2020

Today, I want to promote two more videos of hers that take on two ideas central to Bible-based religions: “King David” and “The Garden of Eden.”

In The Bible’s Buried Secrets: Did King David Exist?:

“Dr Francesca Stavrakopoulou examines how archaeological discoveries are changing the way people interpret stories from the Bible.

Dr Francesca Stavrakopoulou goes on the trail of the Biblical King David and his fabled empire. A national hero and icon for the Jewish people, and a divine king for Christians, David is best known as the boy-warrior who defeated the Philistine giant Goliath. As King he united the tribes of Israel. But did he really rule over a vast Israelite kingdom? Did he even exist? Stavrakopoulou visits key archaeological excavations where ground-breaking finds are being unearthed, and examines evidence for and against the Biblical account of King David. She explores the former land of the Philistines, home of the giant Goliath, and ruins in the north of Israel and in old Jerusalem itself purporting to be remains of David’s empire.”

In The Bible’s Buried Secrets: The Real Garden of Eden:

“Dr. Francesca Stavrakopoulou asks, ‘Can we find the Garden of Eden?’

In the final episode of her series re-examining conventional readings of the Bible, she argues that the Garden of Eden has nothing to do with the origins of humanity, but is rather a story concealing dramatic events about a particular figure in a particular place, two and half thousand years ago. Marshaling compelling evidence from archaeology, Islam and the Bible text itself, she identifies and visits the exact site of Eden. It’s a revolutionary theory which challenges some of the most cherished preconceptions about Eden in both Christianity and western culture.”

Learning about the very human motivations behind religious claims is an important part of healing from my religious trauma. Like the ancient cities’ fortifications being excavated in the ancient Near East, such knowledge repels the invasion of any who claim that “every knee must bow” to their god and the men who claim to speak for him.

I share what I’ve learned in hopes that it will be a light on your path.


Freethinkers Unite! $upport candidates who will fight for separation between church and state!

If you donate to any candidate for public office who will fight to maintain the wall between church and state, please enjoy the playful “Old Time Religion,” by Pete Seeger, as the “offertory,” if you like….

Thanks for coming to today’s edition of the Sunday Service at Citizen Teacher, friend.

Peace & Love. See you next week! Be well.


lisa eddy is a writer-for-hire, researcher, educator-for-hire, youth advocate,  musician, and gardener.

On Twitter: @lisa_eddy

On email: lisagay.eddy1@gmail.com