Song of Songs and Bollywood . . .

(*Note: This post is badly in need of revision. Its an old one I am moving from a blog I plan on deleting in the New Year.) {Add video}

What book in the Bible has probably had the most number of commentaries written on it historically ?

Revelation ?

Joshua ?

Luke ?

Although I don’t have the facts handy right here, I believe that the book with the most commentaries written on it is Song of Songs.

I mean the number of commentaries written is outrageous. Its actually kinda sad to think about this nowadays, because this is just such a neglected book today. I mean how many sermons have you heard on it. I guess this is also partly understandable, since, next to the book of Revelation, it is probably the most difficult to understand.

Anyway, in this post, I would like to very briefly survey the major approaches to the Song of Songs, and then put forward one more novel approach to understanding this book. I call this approach – the Bollywood Approach !

Historically speaking, several interpretations have been suggested for the Song of Songs. There has been the :

1. Allegorical Approach: looks for a spiritual meaning in the texts. Its not quite about Solomon and this lass running around the woods. According to the Jewish Allegorical approach, this book was a picture of God and His relationship to Israel. According to the Christian Allegorical approach, this book was a picture of Christ and His relationship to His Bride, the Church.

2. Literal Approach: which says that Song of Songs (henceforth SOS) is literally about two lovers and their romantic relationship. Apparently this view has not been popular historically.

3. Collection of Poems View: According to this view, this book is nothing but a collection of poems and wedding songs. There no neccessary connection between one poem or another.

4. The Dramatic View: need I explain this ???

5. And so on… there are many more views, many of which are just combinations of one view of other.

Anyway, I would like to add to this mix, and suggest another novel approach to SOS. I call this approach:

N. The Bollywood Approach:

Now some of you may be wondering… “What the heck is Bollywood ?”

Bollywood refers to the Indian Movie Industry. The movie Industry in India has been around probably as long as the American/European movie industry, and is much much larger than the American movie industry. We Indians really love our movies, I can tell you that – and thats and understatement ! Anyway, the ‘B’ in Bollywood comes from Bombay, one of the major centers of the Bollywood movie industry.

Moving on …

If anyone has seen any Indian movies, one of the first things that they will notice is that almost all of our movies are musicals. This absolutely true. Probably 99.999999 % of all our movies are musicals. In fact the movie will either thrive or die based on whether the songs in it are any good.

Anyway, …

Being musicals, all of our movies have these video like scenes with music, singing and dancing and so on. (In fact, you may find this hard to believe, but it is true – the idea for MTV musical videos came from India. The concept originated in India.) These music videos in our movies are quite something. They are a must watch. Sometimes they are hilarious – you know a guy and a girl running around a tree, and flirting with each other, singing verses to each other, proclaiming their love for each other.

Anyhue …

How does all this relate to SOS ?

Well – If you think of the each of the books in the Bible as a movies, (e.g. the Exodus) you can think of Song of Songs as a special book which only consists of just the musical video excerpts from the original movie. So Song of Songs by its nature is difficult to understand. Any movie (that is a musical) is difficult to understand if you only see the musical videos from them and then try to reconstruct what the movie was about.

So how does one understand SOS?

Read the rest of the Bible. The book in particular ties in well with Genesis, Exodus, and Revelation.