#11: Why Storytelling is Essential

We’re taking a bit of break talking about podcasts to talk about the importance of storytelling, the two go hand-in-hand but I hope to convince you why storytelling is important.

I hope that as my audience you have gotten the vibe that I believe storytelling is essential in our society. What started out as an oral tradition has expanded into so many other formats. Visual, interactive, written, and audio are the basic forms of storytelling.

My first understanding of storytelling through oral tradition was in church and how the Bible was written. For example, 40 years after Jesus ascended back into heaven there was no written recording of his life. However there was storytelling of what miracles Jesus did, what he said, how he died, what happened when he rose from the dead, and what happened when he ascended into heaven.

I found a wonderful resource that talks about the importance of storytelling and oral tradition and explains how the gospel is a part of that.

“In the development of the oral tradition then, it seems that over time some of these stories came to be written down, and the use of these summary statements about the contents of the story of Jesus are what came to be thought of as the gospel, the good news, the story of Jesus. But the term gospel, or good news, itself, means just a proclamation of the information, of what happened – The Great Story. And that’s what the gospels are, a narrative tradition, the story of Jesus.”

When John Mark wrote the first gospel, respectively named Mark, he wrote word-for-word what Peter (and original Apostle of Jesus.) saw Jesus do and what Jesus said. It wasn’t just a one time sit down meeting with Peter to get all this information, Mark was Peter’s interpreter. Mark traveled with Peter and even stayed with him when he went to prison. He interpreted for Peter both in written word and verbal.

Do you see the progression here? Oral tradition/storytelling turning into a concrete written form. In my adult life I see the importance of knowing the context of what I read and hear because without context it is just words with no meaning to me.

Regardless of religion or beliefs the act of storytelling helps us understand who we are as a society. There are key reasons listed in this resource I found for you here that I hope you explore as to why we need storytelling.

“Storytelling is what connects us to our humanity. It is what links us to our past, and provides a glimpse into our future.”

 

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