How To Memorize The Bible
By Sten Andersen
Every now and then, I get an email that reads something like this one:
"I want to learn how to memorize the whole Bible.
I read your description of your program and I am still unsure whether it is all that you say it is or some scheme.
I was wondering if there are any other details that you can give me to help me?"
Is It Really Possible To Memorize The Whole Bible?
As you undoubtably know, memorizing the whole Bible is an enormous task.
However, I do believe it is possible!
In fact, William Walker Atkinson says, in his book "Memory, How To Develop, Train and Use It":
In India, in the past, the sacred books were committed to memory, and handed down from teacher to student, for ages.
And even today it is no uncommon thing for the student to be able to repeat, word for word, some voluminous religious work equal in extent to the New Testament.
Max Muller states that the entire text and glossary of Panini's Sanscrit grammar, equal in extent to the entire Bible, were handed down orally for several centuries before being committed to writing.
There are Brahmins today who have committed to memory, and who can repeat at will, the entire collection of religious poems known as the Mahabarata, consisting of over 300,000 slokas or verses.
Leland states that, "the Slavonian minstrels of the present day have by heart with remarkable accuracy immensely long, epic poems.
I have found the same among Algonquin Indians whose sagas or mythic legends are interminable, and yet are committed word by word accurately.
I have heard in England of a lady ninety years of age whose memory was miraculous, and of which extraordinary instances are narrated by her friends.
She attributed it to the fact that when young she had been made to learn a verse from the Bible every day, and then constantly review it.
As her memory improved, she learned more, the result being that in the end she could repeat from memory any verse or chapter called for in the whole Scripture."
So it is possible!
But it is no small feat. And no matter what techniques you use, it will take you a very long time to succeed -- if you succeed at all.
I cannot guarantee you that you will succeed in memorizing the whole Bible, and I would venture to say that anyone who claims to have techniques to guarantee success in such an endeavour is a liar.
(I know those are strong words, and it is just my opinion; but my opinion it is.)
There are books books out there on memorizing, some great, some not-so-great, and some that probably shouldn't be sold at all.
Most Memory Books Teach Mnemonics
What most of these books teach, are mnemonics and mnemonic tricks. These range from the extremely simplistic, like:
General Electric Power Company -- This is for remembering the order of Galations, Ephesians, Phillipians and Colossians
This is the way the disciples run
Peter, Andrew, James and John Phillip and Bartholemew
Thomas next and Matthew, too.
James the less and Judas the greater
Simon the zealot and Judas the traitor."
...to very advanced systems, like memory pegging techniques and phonetic substitution systems.
Tricks like these might be great for remembering tidbits and facts, but they do not improve your memory in the long run. And of course, they do not help you remember long texts, or large amount of information.
The only way I know to train your memory, not for party-tricks, but for extensive feats like memorizing the whole Bible, is to practice. And to practice a lot!
Tke Key Ingredient Vital To Your Success
There is one thing that is absolutely essential when you want to memorize a large body of text.
It is HOW you practice.
I'll say that again: The way you practice is vital to your success.
So how do you practice?
Easy. You need to apply Attention and Interest.
Attention, because it is, of course, impossible to remember something you didn't quite notice in the first place.
How do you become attentive? By being interested!
When you are interested in your subject of study, attention follows.
There are no fancy ways of doing this.
I cannot teach you to memorize the Bible in 90 days; there is no Royal Road to Memory.
You can, however, train your memory.
For every step you take, it becomes easier.
After a while, you will be able to achieve whatever you set your mind to.
About The Author
Sten Andersen helps making memorizing large bodies of text easier.
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