Reza Aslan Hearts NPR

Jul 26, 2013

Author and religious scholar Reza Aslan is one of those people who's at NPR West so often that he blurs the line between guest and employee. We always joke with our regulars that they should have a punch card, and when it's full, they get their own cubicle.

Recently, Aslan has been in and out of our studios a lot to talk about his new book, a biography called Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth. Aslan's focus for this biography was of Jesus Christ, the man.

"Whatever else he was, whether he was the messiah, or God, or what have you, he was a man. He was a human being," Aslan told Weekend Edition Sunday Host Rachel Martin.

For the book, Aslan took the details that are known about the time of Jesus, first century Palestine, a time period that was well documented by the Romans and filled in the details of his life from the sacred history of the Gospels.

"But I also recognize as a historian that this is sacred history. ... They are valuable in the sense that they reveal certain truths to us, but that the facts that they reveal are not as valuable as the truths are."

To hear more about Aslan's history of Jesus of Nazareth, you can listen to the Weekend Edition Sunday interview:

Or a deeper dive on Fresh Air:

While it's a no-brainer to us NPR West-ers that Aslan 'hearts' NPR, and while I've had any number of opportunities to ask him to pose for us, it was on this particular day that he was dressed for the occasion.

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