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The Bible's disregard for unity is quite as impressive as its exhibition of it.

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The Bible can be read as literally as any fundamentalist could desire, but the real literal meaning is an imaginative and poetic one, brought forth through myth and metaphor.

The Bible's deep influence on Western literature makes it one of the first literary classics, but my own reading of the Bible is expansive, open to resonances of contextual meaning.

In any case, at my age discovery can come only from reversing one's direction, going upstream to one's source, like the fisherman in Yeat's "Tower." The negative form of the Greek work for truth, aletheia, which means something like "unforgetting," suggests that at a certain point searching for the unknown gives place to trying to remove the impediments to seeing what is there already. The New Revised Standard Version is copyright 1989, by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America, and its text is used by permission. TO THE READER This preface is addressed to you by the Committee of translators, who wish to explain, as briefly as possible, the origin and character of our work.

I hope that the retracing process of rereading the Bible, whatever its success, will be profitable for some readers, as it has been for me. The Standard English Version (SEV) translation is copyright 2002 by Zaine Ridling, Ph. and is published with permission of Access Foundation. The publication of our revision is yet another step in the long, continual process of making the Bible available in the form of the English language that is most widely current in our day.

Until now, the Quran's contents has frustrated English readers simply because of poor translation efforts to date.