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“”SCRIPTURES, noun; The sacred books of our holy religion, as distinguished from the false and profane writings on which all other faiths are based.
|—Ambrose Bierce, The Devil's Dictionary|
“”What I’m saying is, if God wanted to send us a message, and ancient writings were the only way he could think of doing it, he could have done a better job.
|—Carl Sagan, Contact|
“”Why should one think that God performed the miracle of inspiring the words of the Bible, if he didn't perform the miracle of preserving the words of the Bible?
A holy book is a text sacred to a particular religion. Alternatively, it is a book that has been eaten by worms.
Notable Holy Books
- In order of approximate publication dates:
- The Vedas (~1500 BCE)
- The Upanishads (Primary texts written during 8th-6th Century BCE, but several minor texts have been written as late as the 1500s.)
- The Avesta (Zoroastrianism)
- The Torah (Compiled between 600-400 BCE from scrolls dating back to 1200 BCE) Or maybe a much later date…
- The Tao Te Ching (6th century BCE)
- The Mozi (Mohism, c. 5th century BC)
- The Bible (Compiled from books written between 1200 BCE and 150-200 CE) (Re-route back to the Torah observation two lines up.)
- The Qur'an (Roughly 650 CE)
- Bardo Thodol/Tibetan Book of the Dead (14th century/1927)
- The Guru Granth Sahib of Sikhism 
- Calculus textbooks (17th century)
- The Book of Mormon (19th century)
- The Aqdas (19th century)
- The Canonical Codes (Cao Dai, 1920s)
- Dianetics (20th century)
- The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (20th century)
- The Principia Discordia (20th century)
- The Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster (21st Century)
- Contact: A Novel by Carl Sagan (1985) Simon and Schuster. ISBN 0671434004. Chapter 10 (p. 164)
- Heyns Lecture Series, April 25, 2007
- Internet Sacred Text Archives: Hindusim — The Vedas
- Internet Sacred Text Archive: The Upanishads
- The Hebrew Bible in English
- This discusses some of the issues.
- Encyclopedia Britannica: Lao-tzu
- Mr. Mohammed, Esq.
- See the Wikipedia article on Guru Granth Sahib.
- See Isaac Newton and Gottfried Leibniz, as in "simultaneously and independently", as they say in College Bowls.
- Joseph Smith
- L. Ron Hubbard
- The honourable Douglas Adams
- The Wholey Booque of Discordians Everywhere
- See the Wikipedia article on The Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster.