Wednesday, April 30, 2008

From Darkness to Light

My friend and nemesis (now there's an oxymoron!) GMPilot, has started a thread at my message board on the topic of the movie "The Golden Compass" which is derived from author Philip Pullman's "The Dark Trilogy" novels.

He also hinted that perhaps I should get away from my "Obama" and "Expelled" rants. heh heh

Anyway, here is his post:

Although I'm quite an omnivorous reader, there are some things I don't read: horror novels (I find Stephen King ultimately boring), "bodice-rippers", westerns (excepting always Zane Grey), and fantasy stories. In science fiction, there's usually plausible-sounding (and often possible) theories behind the universe's science; in fantasy, things just are.

In practice, this means I pass right by the shelves containing Tolkien, Lackey, and Moorcock on my way to Niven, Weber and Ringo.

As a result, I never heard of the His Dark Materials trilogy until last autumn, when I read your rant against it on your blogsite. The release of the movie based on Book 1 of the trilogy was imminent, and the publishers of the books were moving in concert with that. I saw copies of the books bound into a large trade paperback, prominently displayed in a number of places--not all of them bookstores. Normally I'd have passed them by, too, but by then I'd read your screed, so I stopped to look.

The publishers tried to pass the trilogy off as sci-fi, but in most places I saw it in the "fantasy" section--or the "young adult" section, next to the translated manga (Japanese comics). Booksellers know their customers' heads.

I decided to find out more about the movie before I chose to spend $6.50 or whatever on it. I was certain that since it was aimed at the same demographic as "Narnia 1", it would be of little interest to me. I did learn quite a bit more about the film, but as things turned out, I never did see it.

A friend gave me the trilogy as a Christmas gift. By this time I'd heard most of the smack: how "subversive" it was, how "anti-Catholic", that it had a reputation as "the anti-Narnia", and all that. Now that I had the story in my hands, I decided to learn not only the facts, but the truth.

Now, The Golden Compass is in release on DVD. I'll be picking it up in a day or two, and find out if it was worthy of all this hoopla-- especially from you, Christine, and that gentleman whose writing you so lovingly quoted.

I know you've got a lot on your plate, what with slicing pieces off Senator Obama and trumpeting the 'triumph' of Expelled, but if you can take time out for this, I'll try to set you straight.

Hey, there's always Narnia 2 ("Prince Caspian") due this summer to chill out with.

GM also pointed out my previous blog post, Warning: Avoid "Dark Materials" Trilogy.

A few days ago, I noticed that the "Compass" movie was out on DVD. What is particularly disturbing to me (as is mentioned in my previous post about it) is how the author intentionally targeted the movie towards children - encouraging them towards atheism.

I wonder. How many unsuspecting parents picked up that DVD thinking that it might just be an entertaining, harmless movie for their children? Anyone know the rating on it? Is it PG-13?

Here is my reply to GM's post:

It is so weird that you brought up the topic of "horror" novels....and specifically mentioned Stephen King! Yesterday, I was looking out my kitchen window and thought about that fiction horror writer. But let me backtrack a bit.

This happened just after taking our puggle dog for a walk. It was as close as I have ever seen of a perfect day! Warm, sunny, comfortable temperature. Clear, pollution-free blue sky. When I got to the top of the cul-de-sac, I could clearly see all of the homes nestled along the hills, far in the distance. Not a cloud in the sky! A gentle breeze was blowing and the palm trees were rustling. During this walk, I began to imagine that this must have been similar to what it was like in the Garden of Eden. Paradise!

Upon returning home, I looked out the window at all the greenery and the beautiful roses growing on the bushes. I noticed that some of the roses were dying and needed to be cut down.

The thought of how evil and sin spoiled God's original intent for us to live forever in paradise crossed my mind at that point. We weren't originally meant to die. Our souls have been created to live forever. Our bodies would have too - if it were not for evil and sin.

That reminded me of Stephen King and his horror novels. I wondered why a person would want to think up such terrible things and write books about them. I thought that it must be a result of a dark mind.

Anyway, I won't be watching "The Golden Compass" nor reading any of the "Trilogy" novels. Not interested.

To each their own...I guess.

I am looking forward to Narnia 2.

One thing that I can agree about is that Pullman certainly labeled his "Dark Materials" Trilogy accurately!

Check out all of the meaning in that word, "Dark".

These definitions apply quite well:

1. having very little or no light: a dark room.
2. radiating, admitting, or reflecting little light: a dark color.

10. evil; iniquitous; wicked: a dark plot.
11. destitute of knowledge or culture; unenlightened.

dark'ish adj., dark'ly adv., dark'ness n.
These adjectives indicate the absence of light or clarity. Dark, the most widely applicable, can refer to insufficiency of illumination for seeing

Contrast that term with the term "Light."

However, the most important descriptions of the term "Light" are in the Bible, especially when describing Jesus Christ!

John 8:12 - Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, "I am the light of the world; he who follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."

John 9:5 - As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world."

John 1:9 - The true light that enlightens every man was coming into the world.

John 1:4 - In him was life, and the life was the light of men.

John 1:5 - The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

John 12:46 -
I have come as light into the world, that whoever believes in me may not remain in darkness.

2 Corinthians 4:6 - For it is the God who said, "Let light shine out of darkness," who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.

Acts 26:18 -
to open their eyes, that they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.'

Revelation 21:23 - And the city has no need of sun or moon to shine upon it, for the glory of God is its light, and its lamp is the Lamb.

Revelation 22:5 - And night shall be no more; they need no light of lamp or sun, for the Lord God will be their light, and they shall reign for ever and ever.

HT: GMPilot from Talk Wisdom message board.


GMpilot said...

It's a pity that your research isn't as thorough as your passion, Hostess.
While you found the definitions for "dark" and "light", I notice that only the dark side saw print in your column.

Moreover, you omitted two of your favorite metaphors: how Satan can masquerade as an angel of light, and about how we all (supposedly) see through a glass darkly.

Worst of all, your repeated the mistake of your original rant last fall: Bill Pullman is an actor, not an author. The fellow who has your knickers in a twist is a Phil, not a Bill.
That makes me repeat the question I asked when you raged about Gandhi a year or two ago:
If you couldn't be bothered to get the man's NAME right, what ELSE about him couldn't you bother to get right?
If I'd been talking about "Jack Christ" on these pages, you'd be on me like white on rice!

Neither your arguments nor your god are well-served by such sloppy work. Your future editor is gonna have his work cut out for him!

Christinewjc said...

So, is this latest blabbering of yours what you meant when you wrote "brace for impact" at my message board?

A little billowy and picayune - if you ask me.

Umm...Earth to GM? I did include the more appropriate definition and examples for the use of the word, "light"...from verses in Scripture.

GM wrote: "Moreover, you omitted two of your favorite metaphors: how Satan can masquerade as an angel of light, and about how we all (supposedly) see through a glass darkly."

I thought about it but felt that perhaps it didn't directly apply here. Besides, isn't it true that omitting them allows commenters to come along and add to the post?

I got the first name wrong. So what? It is easily corrected.

And, Mr. already have the nasty habit of using the name of Jesus Christ in a derogatory manner - especially when you refer to followers of Christ. I've told YOU about that several times in the past and asked you not to use that term. You don't bother to listen to my requests.

Your little milksop, pennyante, weak, fainthearted, pantywaisted [correction, more like panty-WASTED] rant here is evidence that when you don't have a good counter argument to the message - just attack the messenger.

GMpilot said...

I'm not done you'll find out.

Okay, so maybe I did give a 'little milksop, pennyante, weak, fainthearted, pantywaisted [correction, more like panty-WASTED] rant' here, but I doubt it. I've tried to be fair, and see it from your point of view, but I just can't get my head that far up my ass.

Now when you're ready to talk like a reasonable adult, we'll talk like reasonable adults.

Besides, when you invited me over here, you told me "you're probably going to hate it..." So you shouldn't sound so surprised.

AHA said...

Praise and applaus to Christinewjc, thoughts and prayers to gmpilot, an obviously lost child. God bless you both.