Monday, May 28, 2012


HOW I CAME TO OWN THE CODEX

            When Nancy and I first met Preston in 1974 in Aschaffenburg Germany (he was a young chaplain’s assistant then), we had no notion about how our paths would time and again overlap each other until, many years later, we would meet him one last time before his suspicious and untimely death on a lonely road – his car perhaps forced over an edge (he was an excellent and careful driver) - when he handed over the valise he had told us about with the codex inside.

            “Please get this home safely,” he said.  “Everything depends upon it.”  (He was the kind of person who actually used the word ‘upon’ in everyday conversation).

            He was such a jovial person generally that the change in his demeanor was notable.  To see him there in the bus station in Cairo where he had just come in from the long journey down from the north, he looked old and pale and afraid and more sincere than we had ever known him.  “Don’t show it to anyone,” he finished tersely.

            This was in the year 2000, the year before the twin towers came down, so he was only forty-eight years old then, the year of his death, but he looked nearer sixty or even seventy.  It was hard to tell how much of the erosion in his face was from the aging process, how much of it was the natural wrinkles that had been channeled in from years in the desert, how much was the dust of travel, and how much was the fear that seemed to be dripping from him.  In fact when we did get home and heard of his death, neither of us was particularly surprised, though we were deeply saddened by the news.  I remember Nancy remarking, “When we saw him at the bus station there he had death written all over him.”

            Was there anything we could have done to help him save himself?  Neither of us can think of anything.  He was deeply relieved, however, when I took the valise from his hand and promised to see it home.  It was the relief, we understand now, that comes from having unburdened himself at last from the weight of years of secrecy and the constant threat of discovery.

http://jamesdsanderson.com/?page_id=138

Saturday, May 26, 2012

IRAN: The 'Gospel of Barnabas' will trigger collapse of Christianity.  The text was discovered 12 years ago, written in Syriac on animal hide.  It claims that Islam is the final and righteous religion.  See the article at: http://www.christianpost.com/news/gospel-of-barnabas-will-trigger-collapse-of-christianity-claims-iran-75536/

Thursday, May 24, 2012

THE MOST SIGNIFICANT FIND IN HISTORY

The most significant discovery in the history of the world!  The Secret Revelations of Jesus Christ.  See http://www.jamesdsanderson.com (writings page)

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Christian Literature

My new website is up and running. Please come check it out for the best in Christian Literature - fiction and nonfiction. Let me know what you think: http://www.jamesdsanderson.com

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

SACRED ARE THE BRAVE: A Collection of Stories

REVIEW – ‘SACRED ARE THE BRAVE’
‘Sacred Are the Brave’, a collection of short stories by author James D. Sanderson, consists of nine stories about various nonviolent revolutions that took place in 1986 (the People Power revolution in the Philippines) and others that took place in Eastern Europe in 1989. This is the second book to be released by this author – the first was ‘The Angelic Mysteries’ released in September 2011 - and it will be available on Kindle in March of 2012.

What happens when people stand up to cruel men with weapons using nothing more than their bare hands and their hope for a different future? That is exactly what happened in
1989 when fully one third of the world’s population was involved in nonviolent
struggle in one form or another. From the Philippines (earlier, in 1986) through the peaceful revolutions in Eastern Europe and the upheavals in South Africa and the former Soviet Union, unarmed people were able to change the future of the world for the better.

‘Sacred Are The Brave’ is a collection of nine short stories that examines some of these struggles up close and personal. The characters of these short fictions are ordinary people who get swept up in the call for change in their lives and in their nations. One man attempts to change things through a failed hunger strike. A young girl sets out to ask Imelda Marcos to share some of her
thousands of pairs of shoes with the poor. A young college student journals the revolution in her home country of Czechoslovakia. A man tries to tunnel under the iron curtain to reach his lost fiancĂ©. A group of protestors set out to liberate Unity Bridge in an undisclosed Eastern European nation. These are some of the stories of courage you will find in ‘Sacred Are The Brave’.

Each story tells in unerring detail the plight of its characters as they face the very human and sometimes inhuman treatment at the hands of soldiers and other authorities who are determined to put an end to their revolutionary activities. Some were more successful than others but all, as history has revealed, brought liberation to their nations in the end. If you are looking for a very realistic portrayal of the nonviolent revolutions of recent history, you need look no further than ‘Sacred Are the Brave.’

Get it today at: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007ECCGP4

See all my latest writing at: http://www.jamesdsanderson.com

Monday, February 13, 2012

SACRED ARE THE BRAVE
– A Letter from the Author

Well-adjusted people never make history. Those who are perfectly adjusted to the age they live in become a part of that age in history. That is how they are remembered. Those who are malcontent and maladjusted are the ones who seek to change things. And, every so often enough malcontents come together to cause a revolution. And, as was the case in the year 1989, revolution in one place can inspire revolution in many other places. In fact in that one year nearly one third of the earth’s population was involved in nonviolent revolution.
In Hungary, in Czechoslovakia, in Poland, in East Germany, and in many other places ordinary people rose up against their oppressive governments and forced change to happen without use of arms. With only their faith and their courage the people of these countries
stood against the heavily armed tyrants whose rule had gone unchallenged for decades. If it had not been for the actions of those brave souls, these nations and the many others like them might
still be ruled by the iron fist of ruthless dictators.
My previous work, ‘The Angelic Mysteries’ was an experimental novella. Its plot was stripped bare of all extraneous words and lengthy descriptions to put the reader in touch with the underlying struggle of spirit world versus material world. The protagonist Daniel Allman, fleeing the specter of madness (portrayed by the ruthless Morton Toombs) meets an unusual woman, Sarah, who believes she is an angel. Many readers claimed it read more like a screen play than a work of fiction. That was my intention.
The nine short stories that comprise ‘Sacred Are the Brave’ are much more conventional. They are fictions that portray the lives of ordinary people caught up in extraordinary times. People who never thought they would become caught up in the struggle for independence.
People who had perhaps only heard the names Gandhi or Martin Luther King Jr. in passing. Who had never formally studied the way of nonviolent direct action. Who never imagined that a relative handful of committed activists could change the course of history. And yet that is precisely what happened.
These short fictions are peopled by university students, young lovers, factory workers, former soldiers, reporters, priests, nuns, and others. Their lives become tangled up together as
they stand against the powers of their day. They are the unintentional malcontents of their time.
All great literature is the work of malcontents. Those who are perfectly adjusted to the age they live in become a part of that age. Their work is nearly indistinguishable from any other work written during their time. Every work of great literature is unique. It springs from its own well of
greatness within the author. Every one of these books of great fiction and nonfiction on my shelves here are strange and wonderful. No two are alike. I hope you will find the stories of ‘Sacred Are the Brave’ strange and wonderful as well.

Yours,

Jim
For more about my writing go to: http://www.jamesdsanderson.com

Friday, September 2, 2011

GETTING THE WORDS RIGHT

The story is told that Ernest Hemingway wrote the ending of 'The Old Man And The Sea' twenty six times. When a reporter asked him why he wrote the ending so many times old Hem said, "I couldn't get the words right."
That's it. That's what the true artist struggles with. That's what I've been trying to do my whole life. So, when I hear from readers that my novella 'The Angelic Mysteries' is very short, I cringe a little. Yes, it is not long. It was once a longer work and I have worked it down to the very essence of the story at hand. There are not long descriptions of landscapes or backgrounds of the lives of the characters or long rambling discourses of philosophy. There is, instead, a broken up but progressing series of events that lead the characters to a life changing decision. Much like my own life. Yours and mine.
Hemingway also spoke about the words that are purposely left out of a work. He claimed they are of equal importance with the words that are left in. Such discipline does not lend itself to wordiness.
A reader would have to go a long way to find another novel as great as 'The Old Man And The Sea'. It was specifically mentioned in Hemingway's 1954 Nobel Prize award. Old Santiago had gone eighty-four days without catching a fish and he was now considered unlucky by one and all. Even the boy Manolin who used to go out in the boat with him was no longer allowed to go. He was sent out with other boats that had a better chance of actually catching fish. (People must be pragmatic in such matters, after all).
Somewhere along the line Santiago had become a simple and humble man. He dreamed of lions playing on the beach of Africa, and life has made a true saint of him. The large fish he was about to catch would make an even greater saint of him.
He had the heart of a turtle, this old man, which would keep on beating long after it had been butchered. When the giant fish took the bait, Santiago let him take the line for a while so he would have time to eat it, and would be deeply hooked. So deep, he hoped, that the hook would pierce the great fish's heart. Instead, however, when he was hooked he began to tow the old man's skiff far out to sea, steadily and slowly into deep water.
Here, in this simple tale, is all the suffering of a lifetime. All the greatness. All the destruction. All the tears. In the end, tired to the point of exhaustion, Santiago shoulders his mast like a cross and climbs the hill toward his shack. Several times he fell down and had to get back up again. There, in with the other garbage along the shore, is the backbone and tail fin of his great fish, waiting to be washed out with the tide.
This story, also, is the story of every writer who ever tried to write something extraordinary or great. The author is towed far out into the deep water, even against his/her will, and has to struggle with the work as one suffers with a fishing line heavy across the back and cutting the hands until they bleed. The author sheds the tears and implores all the powers of the universe to help in this one task alone: "Help me get the words right!"
Then, having suffered and labored so long, the author must send the work out into the marketplace along with the garbage and swill along the shore, waiting for it to be swept out on the tide of popular opinion. It doesn't seem fair, really, and it is small wonder we see so many good authors abandoning literary fiction and embracing instead the ready money of genre writing. Perhaps greatness will be extinguished altogether. Readers will recall the day when great fish once swam in these waters, but no more...
That is the task that is before us, fellow authors. Fellow readers. Are we going to abandon that which is great? Are we going to satisfy ourselves with something less than the right words? I vow to you now, I will keep up the struggle for greatness, even if I suffer for it. (And at fifty nine years old I can assure you I already have). What say ye? Will you take up the challenge? Will you struggle and sweat and shed the tears that greatness demands of us?
I do hope you will.
'The Angelic Mysteries' available in Kindle now: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B005HFA3K0