THERE IS NO BROADCAST ASSOCIATED WITH THIS EDITORIAL:
Anne and I saw the Da Vinci Code on opening night, and as suspected, we were not disappointed.
The movie followed the book very accurately, and portrayed a great mystery fiction that has the Church somewhat apoplectic.
Not because the premise of the story actually challenges accepted dogma. But rather, because the movie itself sets the tone for viewers to question much about the organization of religion.
Living in a very observant Christian community makes Anne and myself a very minuscule religious minority. And it would shock me to know that besides the two of us in the theater, that there was anyone else who was not Christian.
That said; sitting in the theater watching this movie unfold was as interesting as it was to be watching the conduct of the Christian audience.
Several things really stood out:
1) We expected an older audience (like us), but were amazed to see a great number of younger people, especially “kids” in their teens.
2) We fully anticipated a sold out theater, which it was, but never expected so many people of different ages to be absolutely quiet and respectful.
Movie-goers generally show very poor manners by talking, whispering and/or flashing their cell phones during the show. But not at this movie. It was so quiet, that it was hard to believe there were several hundred people sitting together in the same room.
And after the movie was over, when the audience was leaving the theater, they remained just as quiet. And if they spoke at all, it was in whispers.
This is what I think has the Church scared shitless. Quiet people are generally people who are thinking. And if nothing else, like the book, this movie makes one think.
Like all religions – to question dogma is the greatest sin of all. Because to question even the slightest aspect of the “story” is to begin the process of questioning all of the “story”.
Not necessarily the core belief that Christ (for example) did exist and offered a social philosophy worth living, since that seems to be the smallest part of the organized aspect of the Christian religion.
What comes into question when one examines the dogma, is the pomp and circumstance men created in the name of Christ, specifically to elevate themselves to positions of power, influence and wealth.
Of what need does mankind have of Priests, Rabbis and Mullahs to speak to their respective Gods? If God is all powerful, what need would he have of spokes-people?
None of the Gods we worship created the intricate rules and regulations which demand contact through religious emissaries.
Does it make a Christian (for example) any less Christian to believe in his/her heart in the message of Christ, without buying into the money and power aspect of organized religion?
If Christ existed as the Bible says, it is accepted that he was born of flesh and blood, and walked amongst mankind as a man. And as the “story” goes, he died a horrible mortal death as a man.
So where does all the ritual, costumes and theater come from in Churches everywhere? And what part of this reflects either the message or the life of Jesus Christ?
This is what the Church fears most from works of “fiction” such as the Da Vinci Code.
They’re not nearly as worried about the book and movie challenging the story of Christ, as they are justifiably worried that this type of message challenges THEIR personal “story” of power and influence.
When I was very young attending a Yeshiva (Rabbinical College) in Montreal, I made the mistake of asking one of my teachers WHY, in respect to a bible story. His immediate answer was a vicious slap to my face.
NEVER QUESTION THE WORD OF GOD – NEVER!
That was his answer.
Mine was to quietly question everything, especially the word of God as it was written and portrayed by man. It took about 30 years from that moment, but, eventually, my questions without answers brought me to Atheism.
This is the horror faced by organized religion everywhere.
Educated mankind no longer wants to believe just because some man-created scripture says so. Also, the Church no longer holds that incredible fear of excommunication over the heads of their co-religionists.
Imagine, in this day and age, that a mere mortal man can grant you total absolution for your sins?
Or that some man who is probably of inferior moral quality should be mandated to listen to your confessions?
Or that women are considered second rate to man by religious societies who prosper in the name of a “loving” God?
Or that God is so weak, shy, or uncaring, that we need intermediaries to contact him?
A Toronto friend of mine reminded me of John Lennon’s song IMAGINE. This too was a threat to organized religion and was attacked as heresy.
But nonetheless; it’s good to Imagine.