What Happened to it Being Easy?

“Is it easier to read Shakespeare or the King James Bible?”

Among my assigned reading for Western Literature I read two of Shakespeare’s plays and some excerpts of the King James Version of the Bible.  Each of these pieces of literature were very interesting to read but out of both of them I would say that I could understand the King James Bible much more easily than Shakespeare’s plays, Julius Caesar and Macbeth.

I believe that the reason I could understand the King James Bible better was because I have grown up reading and listening to many different translations of the Bible, therefore I have more of an understanding of the language, words, and ideas in the Bible.  Whereas with Shakespeare, I only just became acquainted with it on a larger scale recently.

I was not assigned to read most the previous Bible literature that I have read which, in my opinion, led to a better understanding and comprehension of it.  Things are usually more understandable when you have a desire to learn it or read it and you do it voluntarily.

On the other hand, doing what’s easiest isn’t always the best choice.  Going out of your comfort zone to try new things, like reading something completely different than what you have normally read, can increase your knowledge and overall comprehension of things.

Maybe that is the idea behind doing school and being assigned to do things.  To go out of your comfort zone to learn things that you wouldn’t normally choose to learn about.  These concepts could give you a better understanding of it in general and it might help to prepare you for bits of life in your future that you didn’t think were necessary to know about.  Although, I must admit that occasionally I have a tough time seeing how some of the things that I am learning in school will help to me in the future.

If I were asked to recommend whether to read Shakespeare or the King James Bible to someone who hasn’t read either yet I would definitely suggest reading the King James Bible.  I suggest this option because if you were to get confused with something you read in the King James Bible you could simply go onto the internet and look up one of the numerous different translations of the Bible to help comprehend what the verse actually meant.  Then again, maybe there is something like that on the internet for Shakespeare too.  Also, in my opinion, when you read the Bible you are actually helping yourself prepare for your future because there is endless advice and life lessons found there so there is another reason why I recommend the Bible over Shakespeare.  It truly depends on what the person prefers.

Both Shakespeare and the King James Version of the Bible contain a different sort of language than what we are accustomed to reading today therefore they both should be read with an open mindset that is prepared to look something up for clarification.  Not everything in this world comes by easily.

5 thoughts on “What Happened to it Being Easy?

  1. These are really good reflections. Well done! The King James Bible is definitely easier to read when you put it side by side with Shakespeare. One reason for this is that Shakespeare wrote in a particular form of poetry and to make it work he sometimes had to screw with the way we would normally put words together in a sentence. If you get time then check out SparkNotes (google it). They have a really cool thing called “No Fear Shakespeare” where you can read Shakespeare’s plays with a modern translation next to them. Kind of like what you’ve said about finding a translation of the bible. Love your honesty in this too. A great essay 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! What an encouragment your comment is! Comments like yours encourage me to continue writing essays such as this one.

      I will definitely check out that alternative translation of Shakespeare you mentioned.

      Thanks again for your input.


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