Entertainment Resources & Analysis
By Nate Richardson
A Member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
Available free at RichardsonStudies.com
Table of Contents
When looking at specific media things get difficult. Decisions along these lines can be quite personal and based on many factors. I will however endeavor to give some personal opinions.
As we look at these specific resources, remember that each person ultimately must bear in mind correct principles, and use those to govern themselves.
My general feeling about entertainment is that it is important, but must be kept carefully within the bounds the Lord has set.
Often, we can do things which help us recreate, but which are also educational. We can seek entertainment which isn’t just fun or leisure, but also builds character, knowledge, faith, etc.
President Nelson has been very specific in teaching that if we chose unwholesome entertainment, that the Holy Ghost will leave our home. Remember, he has called for our homes to be sanctuaries of faith.
Let us also remember the prophet Isaiah’s stern warnings about being overly consumed with violence for its own sake.
President Nelson walks out of movies where there is contention (see Wendy Nelson’s book “The Heavens are Opened”). We should seek to follow his example as guided by the Holy Ghost. There is a trend in Hollywood etc. to make stories far too graphic and disturbing, beyond what is required by the plot. Often we excuse horrifying scenes because “they’re the bad guys doing bad things”, but I feel these scenes often are not pleasing to the Lord, and that the theme of the negative consequences of evil can often be taught without being overly explicit and graphic.
You can and should skip bad scenes, but try to focus on materials which are beyond that need. Take into account the age of the audience, and skip scenes in films which are not age appropriate.
Movies books games music etc. can teach of the complexities of life and its challenges but remember there are limitations to what should be presented, especially with the age of the audience.
Note: Do not rob older children of development by sheltering them from movies about some of the hard lessons of real life. Movies should teach, not just entertain. This being said, be considerate of what is age appropriate.
Torch Lighter series (cartoon episodes on courageous religious characters in history of the reformation, etc.)
Prince of Egypt
The Black Stallion
The Living Scriptures: Animated Stories
The Other Side of Heaven
Because of Winn Dixie (Based on the book)
The Adventures of Prince Achmed (1926)
Muppets Treasure Island
Muppets Christmas Carol
Wallace and Gromit
Around the World in 80 Days
Young Sherlock Holmes
Swiss Family Robinson
Jeremiah Johnson – western – 1972 ?
1984 (George Orwell) – black and white version
The Great Escape
Brave New World (Aldous Huxley) – space suit version
Lawrence of Arabia?
Sherlock Holmes (older not newer, the newer ones have lots of violence and questionable scenes)
Man in the Iron Mask
The purple rose of Cairo
The Patriot (seek edited version)
Braveheart (seek edited version)
Erik the Viking?
Hamlet – 1990
Elizabeth: The Golden Age – PG13 – 2007 ?
All quiet on the western front?
My Fair Lady
Life is Beautiful
It’s a Beautiful Life
Mr. Smith goes to Washington
Little Women (book is better, movie has less references to God, etc.)
Charles Dickens BBC Dramas
The Sound of Music
King and I
Singin’ in the Rain
Westside Story – 1961
My Fair Lady
Darby O’Gill and the Little People
Little House on the Prairie (the books are better, the videos have less references to God, etc.)
When Calls the Heart
When Love Comes Softly
Andy Griffith Show
Perry Mason (one of Thomas S. Monson’s favorites)
BBC Productions of literature by Charles Dickens, Jane Austen, etc.
Sense and Sensibility – 1995
Pride and Prejudice – 2005
Gone with the Wind
Scrooge – Patrick Macnee ?
The Damnation of Faust
Its a wonderful life
Life is Beautiful
Les Mesrables – old version
The Scarlet Pimpernail
The 10 Commandments by Cecil Demille (other modern versions often wrongly portray Moses as very doubtful and angry, and overly emphasize violent encounters)
To kill a Mockingbird
Wuthering Heights – 1939
Bleakhouse – 8 hr version, BBC
Edmond Druid, BBC of Dickens
Oliver Twist – BBC series
Little Dorrit – BBC
-see librivox.org for many public domain audiobook free downloads
-Orson Scott Card: see storyteller in zion book, Ender series, etc.
-Clement Wood: The complete rhyming dictionary
-Nathaniel Hawthorne: The Scarlet Letter
-F Scott Fitzgerald: The Great Gatsby
-Leo Tolstoy: Anna Karenina, etc.
-Louisa May Alcott: Little Women
-Miguel De Cervantes: Don Quijote
-Robert Louis Stevenson: Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde
-John Bunyan: pilgrim’s progress
-Daniel Defoe: Robinson Crusoe
-Jonathan Swift: Gulliver’s Travels
-Alexandre Dumas: The Count of Monte Cristo
-Dante: Dinina Comedia
-James Joyce: Ulysses; The Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
-Ayn Rand: Atlas Shrugged, The Fountainhead, etc.
-Aldous Huxley: Brave New World
-George Orwell: 1984, Animal Farm, etc.
-William Golding: Lord of the Flies
-Thomas Moore: Utopia
-Caroll Quigley: Trajedy & Hope
-Bram Stoker: Dracula
-Paulette Collet: Le Famtome de l’Opera
-Sir Arthur Conan Doyle: Sherlock Holmes
-Robert Louis Stevenson: children stories, treasure island etc.
-Jonathan Swing: Gulliver’s Travels
-Thomas Bulfinch: Bulfinch’s Mythology
Quijote’s inner self he sees himself as something very different than an old commoner who, yet intellectual and likes to read, is just a man like the rest of us. The encouragement from seeing his beloved yet enchanted Dulcenia del Toboso there helps him to renew his journey, so he can go on and continue to change the public feelings on expressing one’s inner self, ones dreams and convictions to the utmost. Quijote can, in a very real sense (since it forms his and others’ behavior), to change his destiny by small and insignificant things, like 30 minutes in a cave. It was much more than a cave to him though, just like how everything else in his poverty-stricken low-class life. He had to make do with what he had to create his ideal reality, and the ideal reality for the rest of humankind.
So, the immaculate detail we read of in the episode of the cave of Montesinos is just as necessary as all the other detail we hear of in the tale on The Knight of the Sorry Fact who becomes the Knight of the Lions. Detail, when you have so little adventure to whorl with in the reality that you have been given, makes all the difference. Palace halls, divine callings from a mysterious enchanted being, these all go to confirm to Quixote the importance of his mission and renewed his confidence in it. He had renewed confidence in part 2 vs part 1 to begin with, deciding to leave his home yet again besides the petitions of his caring niece and maid. Like Virgil’s Aeneid in something of a decent to Hades, Quixote relished the opportunity to have a rebirth experience, rising out of the cave like a birth canal or a tomb. Quixote had to have sources of strength so he could be one for his people, first of all for his squire Sancho Panza, whom he had to reassure constantly that his island awaited him, and that he need not doubt the many requirements of chivalry as being entirely necessary in every case, be it attacking sheep, windmills, these giants and armies, or whether it be demanding involvement in the releasing of a boy being whipped, or swiftly getting princess M. who turns out to be Dorotea, getting rid of all the giants in his way in whatever from he saw them, wine skins of what have you.
There is always Quixote telling Sancho promise of reward so great that he should not ever spend his time asking about how great the reward will be (isn’t that how the gospel of Christ operates to a point? Or at least should operate if we live it?).
Panza’s desires for rewards turn from islands to a more blessed pleasant existence from time to time, but Quixote revives Sancho constantly, and Sancho takes courage at the words of this dedicated man living the lives of the knights and realms of his books, seeing those as the only path toward a good society.
One may consider the need to defend into the pit a peas of Quijote’s dedication, seeing we could say, to defend into every possibility for adventure. The essence of a Knight errant is that he is something of a “yes-man”, taking upon him nearly every adventure so long as he could justify it (so long as it was just).
Quixote was unconquerable and laughed at the prospect of being put under arrest for the deliverance of criminals. Quijote’s method was that he was so important, being on his quest for peace on earth, especially the sake of his dearly beloved beautiful to him although extremely unacquainted Dulcenia del Toboso, as Knights errant do. He must go into that cave for his fame now growing, he becomes even more brave and developed finding out his story has been published, and although detailed it is yet with some discrepancies he would say of its completeness, he was still proud to be going down with the heroes in being in a book of chivalry. Quixote although still insane, begins to be seen in part 2 how society is being to imitate him, and he must carry on doing every civic deed he is blessed with the opportunity of partaking of. The magic is still very alive to Quixote even when he recognizes the knight of the woods and mirrors to be Samson, the college student, it was a mere enchantment to show that he was to have mercy on this fellow and let him live.
Quijote has enemies and friends but he goes on in his adventures and be it going in a cave on sleeping in the woods when a bed at an inn is offered him at time to time, he must act congruent to a Knight because he is one. At least he is set on service rather than trivial matters like the inn keeper so concerned about his dues on strange occasions like dealing with lunatics like Panza and Quijote. The cave descent is important as all Quijote’s extravaganzas, and out of loyalty, for certainly no money was coming in, nor a whole rib uncracked remained in his stomach for that matter, Panza followed Quijote as his traditional Knight Squire, and his wife even allowed him to go.
Quijote’s errands were strange, all of them, but the important fact was that he was doing them, not so much that he was successful in every case (he usually doesn’t get the outcome he expected). By doing what he says to do, Quijote reunited the eternal lovers Leona and D. as well as the revived lovers Don Fernando and Dorotea. We see Quijote does a lot of good even when he doesn’t realize it. Since Quijote decided to be a Knight errant and go on every feasible quest like into the cave, he set up the stage for things to happen. Were the priest and the barber sitting around doing their normal tasks, the deranged forsaken wilderness bound lovers would have remained that way and perished by depression and grief comp rending on their souls day by day as that was the consuming thought of their conscience and their first story to tell anyone who met them. Quijote’s cave dive is symbolic of great things happening by following your dreams. The vision he received there , we have no reason to dispute he did receive it since he is the only witness of his conscience, save it were the short duration of time he spent there- time means nothing to Quijote, this shows that we create our own reality and build with what we have to give us the motivation to do as we see right and true. Quijote had seen, in his mind, through his books, 100’s upon thousands of warrior Knight errants who made their name known this by sword rather than by pen, and he knew in himself that he could revive chivalry and a society with Knights at its core defense and virtue, a revived symbol of a character and force that stops not at their own experience to do right, and laughs at opposition. Sancho, never having had seen Dulcenia del Toboso, randomly picked who was available to be she when they were in Toboso for Quijote. Seeing her appearance different Quijote fell back on truly wicked enchantment, which so often played part in the mysteries of his journeys, attributing her altered appearance to mystery or magic. Quijote was fine to begin with about the pact that compared to other women, a commoner would not think Dulcenia beautiful, but this didn’t matter to Quijote, what she steer for in his mind made Quijote admire her as much as anyone ever adored anyone, this he explained to Sancho when Sancho thought she was not ugh to look at having known her from town.
It’s a long dark descent into the cave, where revelation comes, where we all need go to get our eternal bearings but ascend we must. We think it take s longer than it does to go through these type things, because we are experiencing the full weight of them in detain, and they are the world to us, we are so sure that this absolutely must be where we are supposed to be, loving the adventure of it. Be it in a dark cold difficult cave, it beats sitting at home and watching life go by. Who them is willing and bold enough to ascent their caves, and who will believe virtue? (For Quijote spoke virtue, and none believed him. None were willing to leave their riches for the master).
First some quotes, then some analysis.
“Fools have a habit of believing that everything written by a famous author is admirable. For my part I read only to please myself and like only what suits my taste.”
“You’re a bitter man,” said Candide.
That’s because I’ve lived,” said Martin.”
“Let us cultivate our garden.”
“But for what purpose was the earth formed?” asked Candide. “To drive us mad,” replied Martin.”
“I should like to know which is worse: to be ravished a hundred times by pirates, and have a buttock cut off, and run the gauntlet of the Bulgarians, and be flogged and hanged in an auto-da-fe, and be dissected, and have to row in a galley — in short, to undergo all the miseries we have each of us suffered — or simply to sit here and do nothing?’
That is a hard question,’ said Candide.”
“Our labour preserves us from three great evils — weariness, vice, and want.”
“She blushed and so did he. She greeted him in a faltering voice, and he spoke to her without knowing what he was saying.”
“When a man is in love, jealous, and just whipped by the Inquisition, he is no longer himself.”
“In every province, the chief occupations, in order of importance, are lovemaking, malicious gossip, and talking nonsense.”
“Martin in particular concluded that man was born to live either in the convulsions of misery, or in the lethargy of boredom.”
“And ask each passenger to tell his story, and if there is one of them all who has not cursed his existence many times, and said to himself over and over again that he was the most miserable of men, I give you permission to throw me head-first into the sea.”
“I have wanted to kill myself a hundred times, but somehow I am still in love with life. This ridiculous weakness is perhaps one of our more stupid melancholy propensities, for is there anything more stupid than to be eager to go on carrying a burden which one would gladly throw away, to loathe one’s very being and yet to hold it fast, to fondle the snake that devours us until it has eaten our hearts away?”
“But there must be some pleasure in condemning everything–in perceiving faults where others think they see beauties.’
‘You mean there is pleasure in having no pleasure.”
“All men are by nature free; you have therefore an undoubted liberty to depart whenever you please, but will have many and great difficulties to encounter in passing the frontiers.”
“Cela est bien, repondit Candide, mais il faut cultiver notre jardin.”
“Even in those cities which seem to enjoy the blessings of peace, and where the arts flourish, the inhabitants are devoured by envy, cares and anxieties, which are greater plagues than any experienced in a town when it is under siege.”
Analysis of this book is divided into 2 sections: The Pococurante Episode and Cultivating Our Gardens. Candide is a social critique satirical book.
The Pococurante episode draws much from its name- Pococurante in French means someone who attains or possesses. The character Pococurante had it all. The episode illustrates how that’s not the solution.
Candide had seasons of begging for his bread, like when he first left his boyhood “best of castles” castle, and the Bulgarian men let him eat with them, but he said no, not having money even to sup. They insisted, and Candide ate. Candide carried his optimism at this time, saying that all that happened was for the best. Candide eventually lets his pursuit of Cunegonde be a driving factor of his life, and he comes upon much evil and beatings along the way, but when he gets to El Dorado and receives lots of money, he becomes a weaker character. He begins to try to buy everyone out, trying to be a hero how he deemed it in his childish optimistic mind. Pococurante, like those who get money from Candide, the slaves etc., don’t get happiness from their money. Voltaire was satirical in his writing to attack bad social systems of his day, be they the aristocrats like he (a very bold denunciation) or abusers of women (as we see how the prostitutes don’t like their livelihood they hate it, as Paquette, whose name means gift in French, but they do it to stay alive although in mystery), or church leaders, or governors. Voltaire was a defender of good, he showed the lifestyle of Pococurante was bound for failure, that not dozens of the best thinkers works would please him. Even Martin, the ultra-pessimist old man of the book things to find some good in Pococurante’s immaculate library, but Pococurante insists that it’s all rubbish, not more than a handful of it all worth any time. At least Martin, the pessimist, made himself to be patient in the farm cottage where the narrative ends, seeing that he would be ill-treated, bad off anywhere he goes. At least he wasn’t so much of a problem.
In Voltaire’s day, the Catholic church extracted money from its people (of whom these were many as forced by the crusaders), and in other ways were very abusive to the people. They were killed for having a copy of the bible or wanting one. It was a time where “Great Inquisitions” were happening, where to do something about it were killed. The church leader “The Grand Inquisitor” so named in the text was a personification of this. Be it paying off sins, or paying friars for sermons, as we see in the last few chapters of the text, the church was largely built on money. We see it failed in being good for its people and did more harm than good. The friar in the text gives sermons for money, but at the end of the day, he, as he says all his comrades, go home gloomy as the rest, and we find this friar looking for happiness with the prostitute Paquette. So, Voltaire has this other character, Jean the Anabaptist, who isn’t so “religious” formally as he is just a good person, always acting for others. Ana-Baptist in the 18th century when this was written could mean anti, or, that he was obviously not the stereotypical religion person of his day, yet he was more “religious” than the best of them. Voltaire fearlessly teaches the renunciation of pride and riches, showing repeatedly the unhappiness from them. Candide loses his El Dorado treasures when the robber voyage man’s ship sinks, and we find our hero wanting him dead, and rejoicing in his sunken ship almost as he would rejoice in love, being with Cunegonde. He is addicted to riches, rejoicing when one red sheep laden with money comes back to him, thinking that he is on top again, deeming that the world is good because it gave him money, and he is so audacious as to link that with the hope for true love, that he would have chance at finding “his” beloved Cunegonde. Candide Martin Dr. Pangloss Paquette Cunegonde and the old lady nestle in a cottage home choosing farming as their intent Turkish neighbor with merely 20 acres of farmland he tills himself with his household to avoid the 3 evils highlighted in the text (weariness, vice, and want), reasoning that maybe there they would find more than what Pococurante, the owner of the pleasure that comes from being pleased by nothing, had found, or than the glory-ease-loving x-kings they supped with who were dethroned by war who went around seeking special treatment and to live in the past where they merely were popular and at ease. Candide is ready to renounce the world and all its madness he has seen in it and go to his Cunegonde dispute her new ugliness to honor his honor and manhood. To cling to the only virtue he ever knew, however small it was.
Cultivating Our Gardens:
Candide saying they need to work and maintain their gardens was the solidity he had in his life that kept him going. Finally he had a homestead away from the Bulgarian army with 30 thousands being killed in their wars for not enough reason, or from his make out to be perfect home castle where he was hidden from the world and learned virtually nothing, and worse, did virtually no work, making him be weak, and making him take a long many whippings beatings from Bulgarians etc., loses of riches from robber sailors and demanding slave owners he bought the slaves Dr. Pangloss and his brother in law loses of his love Cunegonde from expulsion from the castle from holding her to her being a sex slave dish washer depressed barely surviving victim of prince in Constantinople, or her having minimal faithfulness, marrying merely to satisfy her temporal want of money.
Candide had been raked over the coals by experience, and pessimist friend Martin that his philosophy that he held so dear in his heart of all-encompassing-optimism, seeing all was as it ought to be and was for the best, Candide saw slowly to renounce that, all though he still clung to happy moments like reuniting with Dr. Pangloss and seeing the Turkish farmer be simple and happy, and seeing Cunegonde dispute her barbarity and unattractiveness.
Candide in effect is done philosophizing, he has taken to the method of the only stable truly happy individual he knows, the Turkish farmer. He doesn’t want to get mixed up in more war and loose more friends and must masquerade all over the world again. He says to Pangloss, at Panglosses suggestion, at all whit’s end, that rather than play with the idea of all things they had been through having worked to their good, Pangloss feeding his atrophic desire to be a professor of a distinguished German college, oppressed with philosophy and thinking and talking to be at peace in his life, set on the come what will and just let it be that way- attitude, being grateful for the seeming “cheerios” they were munching on, these tiny gratuities they were not at ease to enjoy, Candide doesn’t but all this now! Now perhaps we didn’t act in the prime way, and maybe that’s why we’re out here in this forsaken place eating these forsaken victuals. No, Pangloss, let’s just get humble before we fall on our ignorant faces again and go start digging our way out of this whole. Let’s not let fate wash over us lest this garden we’re enjoying the small ravishes of even be overtaken by weeds, and we lose everything else of the everything we’ve lost. Pangloss, our eating these things right now, lives how they are now, have NOTHING TO DO with the pirates, the wrappings, the misfortunes, the cannon ball experiences we’ve walked into. The world is crazy Pangloss, and I want to just stay here and take care of the one thing I have liberty over. It seems these basic human rights you’ve preached to me all through life aren’t so basic, and I’m not dancing in that circle any longer. You’d do well yourself to set those books down a moment or two and till this garden, lest it gets over run and we’re back on the luck shop riches poverty chase lifestyle, and I’m tired of that! El Dorado was a hoax, they wouldn’t admit us there anyway we need to work what we’ve got and see if we can’t blunder it away too. Depending on others to survive is as good as putting your cheeks in the butcher’s hands and shaking on the salt. I’m all for philosophy and optimism Pangloss, but not what you’re used to. One too many harlots Pangloss, one too many free tickets and quick fixes. You can find me in the garden, and maybe then we’ll talk.
I will show how the Odyssey was positive and encouraging for people like the Aeneid also, and importance of God’s and man’s wills. Homer shows men act and Gods help, Virgil shows Gods act and men are pawns, but in a good way. Both are Hero’s to look up to- Aeneas commanded ship men to stay true on scary waters to Italy, Odysseus helped the men stay strong when approaching the island where Polythenia the one eyed moister lived.
They both like humans and revere the God’s- Aeneas helped his dad get away from their homeland in Troy so he would be safe even carrying him on his back (and wept for the welfare of others). He acted that way to the Gods also, trying to pay due respect to their wishes, and believed that as he did that he would be protected- He was – Odysseus on the other hand would pray to Gods for aid but go do his own thing. Odysseus and Penelope were very shrewd, whereas Aeneas and his Dita were very opposite, he is stern, she is kind.
Aeneas was self-centered- political movement over family- they both united with then left women on their journeys, but Homers moves were to help him get to his family, and those of Aeneas were to establish a political kingdom, Rome. There is some sympathy for Aeneas however, seeing as how his homeland was taken over.
Both Homer and Virgil play up the character to be the role model for human beings, and better than anyone ever known up to that point.
Odysseus was more like a spy, having to often wait to reveal his identity like when he was with Cyclops, and waited until he was rowing softly away before he deemed it safe to reveal his identity and also in Ithaca making sure all was as how to best do things based on his intellect that might otherwise fail whereas Aeneas could show up and off the cuff take over and win every time.
Odysseus was a more solitaire journeyer, not so much support, being cast from one island to the next we hear little of his companions although he does have some at times. Aeneas we find in more battle situations, and we only hear of Odysseus’ past battle experiences. They’re similar because the main victory of the battle over Troy was given to Odysseus, and the main person who founded Rome was Aeneas. There are enemies to these heroes. It seems that for Odysseus, the God Zeus is only looking out for him because he was a just fellow, and the Gods value justice and just people getting, by blessing the just persons, the Gods are making a good investment so to say, getting something back for what they put in -but Aeneas seems to be secure in his destiny (from the readers point of view maybe not from the point of view of Aeneas) because he is the one whose fate is elected to start Rome. The Gods seem to like him a lot more than Odysseus since Odysseus got tossed around the sea more and had more one on one battles than Aeneas – aka more life-threatening encounters. Aeneas mom is a God named Venus, naturally he would have a lot of help. It’s to say he is part God himself, whereas Odysseus was only aided y Pallus Athena to look like a God sometimes when he needed to persuade people. We see Odysseus as being as it were, a lot more proved to real human infirmities dispute his zeal- like when he found himself on the island of the Athenians he was so beat up he looked like driftwood- even left naked. Also, Odysseus, who usually held his composure, yelled out his true identity when sailing away from Polythenus to irritate him. Odysseus was very good at wowing people- all the girls wanted to have him, from Athena, to Calypso, to the daughter of the king of the Athenians and so on. Odysseus had to earn his respect with people who didn’t know him whereas Aeneas seemed to have a self-inherent respect.
There is an enemy to Odysseus namely the suiters for his wife Penelope waiting back at home where he was the king of Ithaca, and Aeneas had a foe as well that he ended up killing, but it was just one man instead of a myriad of suiters. Odysseus had already helped Ithaca, and wanted to go there again to keep things, especially his nuclear family but also his kingdom there, in order. Aeneas had a different path, he was aging to establish the great mighty God-ordained Rome. He had a lot bigger of a mission to go on to, whereas Odysseus seemed a lot more normal of a person, but oh the way he introduced himself and spoke so dazzlingly to people- like when he begged for the mercy of clothing from the Athenian princess and called her a Goddess, asking her if she was so. It seemed Odysseus earned his favor with Zeus, and Aeneas was just picked to settle Rome etc. because of who his mother was. It seems the Odysseus was a lot more refined of a man because he kept his composure and hardly ever wept except for on one occasion where the Athanasian Islanders were having a festival celebrating the grandeur and losses of Troy. Odysseus seems more independent. Odysseus seemed more family centered that being his main drive (even though he obediently his family for a season out of obedience to the Gods). We hear about how Aeneas was entrusted with the tutelage of a lad at war times, but Odysseus and his son worked very closely together to restore unity and normality in their home against the suitors.
Homer’s Odyssey appeals more to the human side of people because it is a man always on the edge. Virgil’s Aeneid is unique in that it is a telling of a preexisting tale but in a different way, but that the main hero is more unable to fail makes it less applicable to the reader (perhaps the Romans wanted to look better than the Greeks by having a more invaluable hero). It is to say, “Join the strong establishment of the Gods” whereas Homers Odyssey is to say, “Do all you can in your sphere”. Rome and Greece are both noble places on some accounts, but the literature proses that Rome was the best, that it was what had been waiting to happen.
These works were both to show the art of language since they utilized language (Homer in Greek, Virgil in Latin) like no one else did. Both are to teach of what humans do when pushed to their limits, like Dita’s suicide and Penelope’s strange putting off suitors for 20 years awaited her husband’s return. Hence both teach the valor of women being true to whom they fall in love with. Both depict that the best woman type is a strong woman. Dita was a great leader of a warrior people and Penelope was strong and wise enough to trick suitors and not give in to twenty long years of their relentless antagonism (they were after power she had etc.) After Dita’s husband was killed she shut down, as did Penelope when Odysseus was so long gone, but powerful deep hope was shown in both by Penelope awaiting the return of her Odysseus, and Dita in opening her heart again once she had found this new love Aeneas. They both show a woman’s dedication to her husband as being a key trait of their valor.
Both works are extremely religious where God’s and mortals are constantly involved in each other’s affairs. The Gods want the mortals to acknowledge them and let them run the show in The Aeneid, while in the Odyssey it’s more of a dog eat dog situation, but for anyone who is super determined like Odysseus, a Goddess will, like Pallas Athena, help you where you would otherwise fail. Both heroes get helped by The Gods, but in the Aeneid the big picture is displayed- the Gods want a utopia society, so they have one man make it happen. In the Odyssey, it’s like the Gods are letting the mortals figure things out, and helping them as they ask for it, like Odysseus constantly praying, seemingly getting his cunning as a gift from the Gods because he asked for it.
General Content Ratings
Galadriel & Arwen: Ideal Females
Frodo & The Hobbits: Power in Humility
Elves: A Type of Exaltation
The Silmarillion: Bible of the Elves
Quick Look at Pros and Cons
Inspiring Quotes from The Hobbit
Inspiring Quotes from The Fellowship of the Ring
Inspiring Quotes from The Two Towers
Inspirit Quotes from The Return of the King
The Lord of the Rings is a story of the corrupting influence of ultimate power, and heroes who stand against it. The books are arguably better than the movies as they are less violent, but both have refining qualities.
General Content Ratings:
The costumes are all modest, which is excellent.
The language is all clean, which is excellent.
The level of violence and horror portrayed in the films are concerning, particular for young audiences. This factor lowers my rating of this film, demoting it from the status of classic, and putting it as only an interesting story instead.
There is much of the fantastic in these movies. This is potentially dangerous as it desensitizes the viewer to reality.
The females typically retain female roles, and the males male roles, which is excellent. The lady in part 3 is the exception to this, though exceptions are sometimes permissible.
Galadriel & Arwen: Ideal Females:
She is the ideal female. She isn’t a warrior killer, but a beautiful counselor, full of wisdom. She shows that she can be good or evil with those traits. Her beauty is disarming, her wisdom and ability to communicate well with others is the root of her power.
Arwen is also an ideal female whose power is in her influence rather than her sword. She is also a Christ figure who gives up immortality for love.
Frodo & The Hobbits: Power in Humility
Hobbits are the example of weak things doing great things. This is a theme of the gospel, that God uses the weak to break down the strong. He does this to show that he can fight his own battles, and merely needs willing humble servants who will carry out his will without their personal pride getting in the way. Don Quijote is another of these analogies of the weak doing great things in an untraditional way. Missionaries preaching the gospel, often at very young ages, are another example of how small and simple things can cause great things to come to pass.
Hobbits, due to their humility and family culture, are resistant to evil. It does take a toll on them, but not nearly to the same extent as it does others.
Elves: A Type of Exaltation
Elves are symbolic of angels, or people who have mastered themselves. They are beautiful and skilled.
It is of concern that they are depicted with long hair, men and women alike. This is a pagan theme. Jesus’ hair (to the shoulders or thereabouts) would have been considered a medium length. In mediaeval times, Joan of Ark cut her hair to the shoulders to appear as a man in battle. These just a few evidences that mens hair, for symbolic and other reasons, is to be kept shorter than the hair of females. This being said, the story does take place in an alternate universe where different cultural standards are applicable. But we do know that all writers have as their goal to make characters which can be relatable to us, but this can perhaps be well enough accomplished despite the hair issue. The hair in this instance is likely symbolic of beauty and control, though it does lack the important symbol of differentiating males from females, particularly when the men are beardless.
The Silmarillion: Bible of the Elves
This book is essentially the bible of the elves, and takes place before the Hobbit or the Lord of the Rings.
God in heaven and Satan reveling seeking to userp others.
People being allowed to elect to come to earth. Some of the greatest going there.
A Christ in opposition to the Satan, both sons of God.
Christ to come in the fullness of time to be king.
Women of beauty beyond description due to having the light of God in them.
Christ the firstborn of God who lead in heaven.
The good people of earth preparing for the coming of the firstborn of God, despite Satan’s attempts to take over.
7 arch angels
Gender from the beginning.
Ulmo the holy ghost who has no body and speaks to everyone by spirit
Satan’s music wild
Those who listen to good put away dispair and the enemy
Satan started with despite for light but became the great liar as he wanted light for his own rather than the established way. To userp and control.
Sauron like Cain serves Satan
Satan like Christ in the beginning but falls tragically
Satan speaking nice things and suddenly throwing in bad things so that those who heard it thought it was their own conscience for their themselves remembering their own personal thoughts
Satan deliberately uses lies to turn people against each other
God intervenes to obliterate a wicked society
Quick Overview of Pros and Cons:
Most characters don’t have super powers
Simple characters becoming heros
Respectful to women
Based off of great novels
Quoted in general conference
Galadriel & Arwen as ideal females with powerful influence without fighting
Has wizards (though they are sent by the good God to help the people against the evil forces)
Lots of fighting
Gore in the movies (likely not so in the books, but a fan of one is typically a fan of the other)
Some suggest these ‘alternate universes’ are used as allegory, and that the ‘no God’ point is therefore invalid, and that the ‘has wizards/witches’ is invalid due to it taking place in a ‘different’ universe than our own
The Hobbit – Quotes
“There is nothing like looking, if you want to find something. You certainly usually find something, if you look, but it is not always quite the something you were after.”
“It does not do to leave a live dragon out of your calculations, if you live near him.”
“Where there’s life there’s hope.”
“Where did you go to, if I may ask?’ said Thorin to Gandalf as they rode along. “To look ahead,” said he. “And what brought you back in the nick of time?’ “Looking behind,” said he.”
“There is more in you of good than you know, child of the kindly West. Some courage and some wisdom blended in measure. If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.”
“Never laugh at live dragons, Bilbo you fool!”
“Farewell! O Gandalf! May you ever appear where you are most needed and least expected!”
“It was at this point that Bilbo stopped. Going on from there was the bravest thing he ever did. The tremendous things that happened afterward were as nothing compared to it. He fought the real battle in the tunnel alone, before he ever saw the vast danger that lay in wait.”
“Not all those who wander are lost.”
“I wish it need not have happened in my time,” said Frodo.
“So do I,” said Gandalf, “and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”
“I don’t know half of you half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve.”
“The world is indeed full of peril, and in it there are many dark places; but still there is much that is fair, and though in all lands love is now mingled with grief, it grows perhaps the greater.”
“Deserves it! I daresay he does. Many that live deserve death. And some that die deserve life. Can you give it to them? Then do not be too eager to deal out death in judgement. For even the very wise cannot see all ends.”
“May it be a light to you in dark places, when all other lights go out.”
“Short cuts make long delays.”
“It is not despair, for despair is only for those who see the end beyond all doubt. We do not.”
“War must be, while we defend our lives against a destroyer who would devour all; but I do not love the bright sword for its sharpness, nor the arrow for its swiftness, nor the warrior for his glory. I love only that which they defend.”
“It’s like in the great stories, Mr. Frodo. The ones that really mattered. Full of darkness and danger they were. And sometimes you didn’t want to know the end… because how could the end be happy? How could the world go back to the way it was when so much bad had happened? But in the end, it’s only a passing thing… this shadow. Even darkness must pass.”
“Still, I wonder if we shall ever be put into songs or tales. We’re in one, of course, but I mean: put into words, you know, told by the fireside, or read out of a great big book with red and black letters, years and years afterwards. And people will say: “Let’s hear about Frodo and the Ring!” And they will say: “Yes, that’s one of my favourite stories. Frodo was very brave, wasn’t he, dad?” “Yes, my boy, the famousest of the hobbits, and that’s saying a lot.”
‘It’s saying a lot too much,’ said Frodo, and he laughed, a long clear laugh from his heart. Such a sound had not been heard in those places since Sauron came to Middle-earth. To Sam suddenly it seemed as if all the stones were listening and the tall rocks leaning over them. But Frodo did not heed them; he laughed again. ‘Why, Sam,’ he said, ‘to hear you somehow makes me as merry as if the story was already written. But you’ve left out one of the chief characters: Samwise the stouthearted. “I want to hear more about Sam, dad. Why didn’t they put in more of his talk, dad? That’s what I like, it makes me laugh. And Frodo wouldn’t have got far without Sam, would he, dad?” ‘
‘Now, Mr. Frodo,’ said Sam, ‘you shouldn’t make fun. I was serious.’
‘So was I,’ said Frodo, ‘and so I am.”
“I was talking aloud to myself. A habit of the old: they choose the wisest person present to speak to”
“Do we walk in legends or on the green earth in the daylight?’
A man may do both,’ said Aragorn. ‘For not we but those who come after will make the legends of our time. The green earth, say you? That is a mighty matter of legend, though you tread it under the light of day!”
“I will not say: do not weep; for not all tears are an evil.”
“What do you fear, lady?” [Aragorn] asked.
“A cage,” [Éowyn] said. “To stay behind bars, until use and old age accept them, and all chance of doing great deeds is gone beyond recall or desire.”
“It is not our part to master all the tides of the world, but to do what is in us for the succour of those years wherein we are set, uprooting the evil in the fields that we know, so that those who live after may have clean earth to till. What weather they shall have is not ours to rule.”
“Come, Mr. Frodo!’ he cried. ‘I can’t carry it for you, but I can carry you.”
“End? No, the journey doesn’t end here. Death is just another path. One that we all must take.”
“For I am the daughter of Elrond. I shall not go with him when he departs to the Havens: for mine is the choice of Luthien, and as she so have I chosen, both the sweet and the bitter.”
Several videos against Tolkein etc. by “KJVM Brian Denlinger” have come up. Idk if tolkein or any fantasy is worthy of us, still investigating, but as these videos are often used as the reason why those books are bad, and I find these videos hardly intelligent or reasonable, I will attempt to point out many fallocies in his logic and his overall rudeness. I also point out a few good points he possibly makes. It may be true that these books aren’t good and the whole fantasy genre is garbage, but the way this guy rebuked them appeared to be rediculous and rude. I’ve been through a few hours of this guy’s lectures and I’ll likely get to the rest of it, but I feel this guy is really off, regardless of whether tolkein etc are decent books. I liked them growing up and haven’t had time or interest in them as an adult, but as to whether they’re ok at all is something I’m investigating. If Tolkein and other Christian fantasy writers books aren’t good, I don’t think they intended them to be evil, but were simply ignorant of the danger of the themes they used. These lectures seem like stirring up a mob more than anything else, and they assume the authors’ the worst intentions, and the tone is quite hateful.
The videos point out that Tolkein speaks of the unnamed spirit that wrote his book. This could mean good or bad. We know both occur. Let’s not jump to say it was bad.
Tolkein says though not a Christian allegory, his writing was generally consistent with Christian thought in many ways. I don’t see an issue with that. Since when does something have to be strictly Christian to teach us? Joseph Smith hired a New to teach him Hebrew, and I could list dozens of other examples. The sunset for example, yes it was made by Christ, but there’s no autograph on it, Christ lets us find him through it, and it works as a teaching symbol of the wonder of life even for the heathen who know not God.
Tolkein speaks of his longing for dragons. Dragons are cool. They’re dinosaurs that existed in the not so distant past. Why not want to see them and tell stories about them? The video rudely connects this to Satan and insinuates that Tolkein is connected to Satan.
Tolkien speaks of the demon of invention but he may have been referring to the Greek meaning of demon which means small God.
CS Lewis has a book where they’re dancing in a circle and it’s a magic circle and the god of wine Bacchus is perhaps there and they’re calling on the god of wine in an ancient language. I don’t see an inherent problem with them being jovial and drinking wine. The video claims that this dancing in a circle calling on the wine God is something practiced by witches even today. This might be true but just because a witch does something doesn’t mean they own it entirely. These are characters in an alternate universe doing what they know best. Yes they’re not role models of what we should do as we indeed have higher knowledge than they, but celebrating this type of historic thing practiced by the ignorant isn’t evil, it’s just remembering days gone by. This being said, it could be evil if taken as a blueprint of what we should go do this evening. But it’s not, so it likely isn’t evil.
Lewis also wrote Mere Christianity and Screwtape Letters, good Christian books. Even if his testimony wasn’t 100 percent, he still seems to be going in the right direction.
The video claims that Lewis and Tolkien are required reading for new witches so they can start to become versed in these things. This doesn’t inherently make them bad books. Example: McDonald’s is unhealthy, but not everyone who eats there is evil. Some are just in a hurry. Another example: Protestants and Catholics read the Bible, doesn’t mean the Bible is to be rejected just because someone with different views than you also likes it. Caution: the magic themes in this book could be dangerous, especially if the reader doesn’t understand that they aren’t to be taken literally. Tolkein etc don’t go calling for us to go practice magic. It’s just a story.
Many who say Tolkein and Lewis are appropriate still claim Harrow Potter is not. Perhaps this is so. We will get into that later.
He brings up that these books and star wars and harry potter etc suggest there is one power in the universe, and it is neutral, and can be used for good or bad. This isn’t entirely false. Satan knows lots of science and uses that to do miracles to decieved the elect. God knows all science. The universe has laws. Some rebel against those laws. There is no dark side to the priesthood, just false prieshoods, but the analogy still makes some sense an is a useful teaching tool.
CS Lewis and one of his final books and the heaven scene the lion admits one of the servants of the bad guy and to heaven because he was a loyal servant to the bad guy and he said loyal service is counted as service to God even if the loyal service was given to the devil. this seems like a partially true interpretation of Grace and doctrines like unto it but can we blame him for being a little bit off without the knowledge of the restored gospel? not even the Protestants understand the grace. We do believe that one who didn’t have the truth from not knowing where to find it is still saved. Perhaps this servant guy was so brainwashed that he was thereby kept from the truth, and in doing the best he could with the light and truth he had, he was saved. We aren’t the judge. But do take caution. We must not be decieved. The highest Glory is for those who are not decieved. This said we know there’s work in the spirit world to teach the ignorant so they can be saved. The video rebukes the approach of Tolkein and others who say people can be saved if they didn’t have the truth but did the best with what they had… But that’s our doctrine precisely.
One of the claims in these videos are quite bogus for example he roasts them for being Catholic he roasts them for liking the pub where these authors drink but I don’t care if they drink, many good people have drunk, Joseph Smith had a pub installed into his house at one point.
A main argument against the fantasy genre saying it’s not ok for bible believers is that they have wizards. it could be argued they’re not promoting actual witchcraft as condemned in the Bible.
The videos make bold claims that these writers are in hell and that those who read their books are in hell, very condemning which I do not like.
Tolkien or Lewis called basically everything a myth including Christian myth. while this is probably not the best way to talk about Christianity it’s a general literary analysis of certain ways of thought and many myths may have grown out of Christianity. elsewhere Tolkien says he is very much committed to his Catholic religion so we know that he does believe his religion to be real. He is a Catholic and does consider himself a Christian when you define Christian as someone who believes in Christ.
The video rebukes his bling haired Galadriel as a Mary figure, comparing it to the long blonde goddesses of some myth. But we do believe in goddesses, and perhaps they indeed, some of them, have blonde hair. Joseph Smith said God has while hair.
The video rebukes Tolkien and others for being Catholic. sure it’s not the correct religion, but neither is the Protestant religion and just because someone’s a different religion than you doesn’t mean their writing is all bad.
He points out that tolkien’s middle Earth map resembles Nordic mythology but what’s inherently wrong with that. This is telling stories and a fun way which can be a great avenue to learn and enjoy life and explore.
Many try to make tolkien’s books into a theological trees but he himself said it was not meant to be so it was simply a fun story with wise characters who had good character traits and so far as that is concerned it was profitable as a masterpiece of writing worthy of our time the Bible is not the only thing where they have our time
Elder Richard G Scott said if all we do in life is church sponsored stuff Church written books etc then we’re missing out on the depth and joy God wants us to have in life
Tolkien’s book The silmarillion has a lot of parallels with Latter-Day Saint teachings
These books do not worship the wizards the wizards are just some among the many characters they have their own problems their own weaknesses it’s everyone working together good versus evil
Tolkien said there was a divine inspiration in his writing. Some said it was God some say it was the devil.
his books are probably a lot better than the movies Hollywood tends to mess everything up they certainly made it to violent gory and graphic in the killings etc some could argue that his well the movies made about his books would have been rated R for they to come out 50 years before they did
It would certainly not be a good idea to show those movies to young people but only to those that are more mature
The video makes many bogus claims such as Tolkien possibly believing the orcs were Jews you never says any such thing there are several heinous claims like this in the videos
The videos rebuke them for selling wine to make money but that was a very common thing in the not so distant past and I would add not entirely sinful
He rebukes the books for not teaching the doctrine of Jesus on the cross but that was never the purpose of the books
and the alternate universe that the stories take place in they’re using what they have been able to find by way of power they’ve not found the full priesthood. It could be said that the priesthood is sort of like magic.
The video rebukes CS Lewis for making fun of one verse of scripture where Jesus says this generation shall not pass away till the end basically Lewis says Jesus was very wrong and showed his ignorance in this one occasion now obviously Louis was not perfect in his understanding he did not have the restored gospel perhaps he should have received the restored gospel but can we blame him for being confused when he does not have the fullness of the Gospel on this point
the author of the video takes a very rude approach calling people brainiacs and insinuating that many of them are burning in hell very rude and does not appear to understand the Christian teachings of not judging others because for us our job is to be merciful it’s up to God how God will judge and hear.
many true doctrines which are found only in the restored gospel such as God having several kingdoms for varying degrees of righteousness and many other doctrines and sometimes Tolkien and others philosophize about some of those doctrines and they actually come close to getting them right but whenever those are at variance with the Protestant understanding of Doctrine he throws them under the bus
the video points out some nonsense written by people who like Lord of the Rings such as the book finding God and Lord of the Rings, the author of that book says Jesus made a mistake when he didn’t take the opportunity offered him by the devil to become divine. obviously the writer of that book didn’t understand that Jesus already is divine and already has God’s kingdom and power but that’s just some guy who wrote a book about God and Lord of the Rings that doesn’t reflect the views of the authors of those books
he rebukes possible Christian parallels seen in Lord of the Rings such as a humble ranger becoming a king, like humble Jesus becoming a king, and like gandalf who almost dies but then comes back like Jesus who dies and then comes back, the reason why these rebukes are not very good is because they actually are decent analogies. we can make analogies even when those analogies don’t claim to be exactly the same characters as the Bible.
for example if a person lives a humble but righteous life that person will be exalted it’s not just God who gets exalted and this is of course one of the doctrines that the Protestants don’t understand and the Catholics don’t understand but these writers such as Tolkien appear to transcend The limited knowledge of their religious peers and stumble upon or receive Revelation about great parallels
The video rejects the idea that we can be little christs obviously the guy doesn’t understand the doctrines of the Gospel which are that Christ was so that we can be like Christ and become as him and inherit all things with him
He rebukes the female elf Christ analogy of one who gives up eternal life for man, but it’s actually a good analogy because women can be exalted too
Someone said that tolkien’s writings can remind us of God just like how a tree can remind us of God even though neither one of those (the books or the tree) is inherently talking about God. the fact remains that all natural and good things point us to God, and yes a tree very much does remind us of God, all of nature does and the point being made here is that something doesn’t have to be explicitly about God to be a good teaching tool to teach us about God
He claims that December 9 is some sort of a cultic day which is the day a Narnia movie or something was released and he claims it was planned out well I agree that movie release dates can often be planned out this one seemed to stretch
The video rebukes Tolkien for saying that there will be some kind of restoration of authority just like how in the Return of the King book The authority was returned but again this is very much true Doctrine which Protestants don’t understand.
This series targeting female drama is not to be trifled with. It contains gruesome and terrifying themes. It depicts characters formerly known as evil, such as vampires werewolves etc., as actually being good.
It was said that the value of Harry Potter is that it teaches to have good friends, but that the value of Twilight is that it teaches the importance of having a boy friend! Not at all a very noble theme.
It is also not honorable that the boys stalk the girls in criminal ways.
I am not very familiar with these books or movies, but really can’t stomach the idea of becoming so.
Speaker for the Dead
Children of the Mind
A more through list could be made but here are some things to remember:
- Push your trainees, push yourself
2. Be smart
3. Why > what
4. THE PRESENT IS THE BATTLE, NOT THE FUTURE. Your life’s ‘ministry’ / ‘impact’ isn’t something to look forward to, it’s happening right now, so give it your best shot every day. Your test will be over before you know it.
5. Like to win thoroughly
6. Beware simulated scenarios becoming your reality and beware manipulation
7. Deceiving someone for the better good will turn them against you.
8. We can choose to use our talents for good or evil
9. Spread ideas and they’ll become part of the debate
10. We have good and evil in our natures; the evil must be fought against continually. To be too soft or too hard is to miss self-mastery and to fail in giving maximum service to your fellows.
11. Only someone pure in heart will have enough insight & inner compass to win the unbeatable battles
12. Shun violence
13. Beware attacking an enemy you know little about, especially in offensive rather than defensive action
14. Sometimes only isolation can push a person to their best self, the need to make it on their own without help or hope of help
“I think that most of us, anyway, read these stories that we know are not “true” because we’re hungry for another kind of truth: the mythic truth about human nature in general, the particular truth about those life-communities that define our own identity, and the most specific truth of all: our own self-story. Fiction, because it is not about someone who lived in the real world, always has the possibility of being about oneself.” –Note from OSC From the Introduction to Enders Game
“I think it’s impossible to really understand somebody, what they want, what they believe, and not love them the way they love themselves.”
“Humanity does not ask us to be happy. It merely asks us to be brilliant on its behalf.”
“There are times when the world is rearranging itself, and at times like that, the right words can change the world.”
“An enemy, Ender Wiggin,” whispered the old man. “I am your enemy, the first one you’ve ever had who was smarter than you. There is no teacher but the enemy. Only the enemy will tell you what the enemy is going to do. Only the enemy will ever teach you how to destroy and conquer. Only the enemy shows you where you are weak. Only the enemy tells you where he is strong. And the rules of the game are what you can do to him and what you can stop him from doing to you. I am your enemy from now on. From now on I am your teacher.”
“So the whole war is because we can’t talk to each other.”
“I need you to be clever, Bean. I need you to think of solutions to problems we haven’t seen yet. I want you to try things that no one has ever tried because they’re absolutely stupid.”
“He could see Bonzo’s anger growing hot. Hot anger was bad. Ender’s anger was cold, and he could use it. Bonzo’s was hot, and so it used him. ”
“I will remember this, thought Ender, when I am defeated. To keep dignity, and give honor where it’s due, so that defeat is not disgrace. And I hope I don’t have to do it often.”
“The story itself, the true story, is the one that the audience members create in their minds, guided and shaped by my text, but then transformed, elucidated, expanded, edited, and clarified by their own experience, their own desires, their own hopes and fears.”
“The story is one that you and I will construct together in your memory. If the story means anything to you at all, then when you remember it afterward, think of it, not as something I created, but rather as something that we made together. ”
“We’re all trying to decide whether your scores up there are a miracle or a mistake.” “A habit. ”
Speaker for the Dead
(Note: this has nothing to do with spiritualism, calling on the dead to speak; its rather about how Ender becomes a really good psychologist who understands human behavior & researches situations thoroughly so he knows how to “speak” on behalf of the dead, something of a private detective. In other words, he gives really good talks at funerals.)
Take Home Messages:
- Don’t unwittingly participate in bullying; lack of service to someone in need can lead that person to darkness
2. When you know someone’s story, an unlikely character can be very lovable
3. Help each other succeed rather than pinning foreigners in a box
4. SPEAK TO OTHERS IN THEIR OWN LANGUAGE, a language they understand. This goes beyond linguistics.
5. Lies and secrets, unresolved issues, even if they are for trying to protect others, they do more harm than good, and the real healing comes as we speak truth.
6. When you know what you must do, hurry and do it before you cower away
7. When an ambassador for peace, speak to your rivalry with respect, and demand respect from them. Do not answer to commands. See them as an equal to yourself, not below, not above.
8. You can learn from those who you consider inferior to yourself.
9. People will become what you treat them like
10. When we learn an unfavorable thing about someone we love which occurred in long past, don’t hate them, forgive them. You loved them before and they still had the sin then, so if you stop loving them now the only thing that’s changed is you.
11. A different people need their own laws because of how they live
12. There are 2 ways to be great, the evil way is to destroy anyone who appears superior to you until you have no competition. Some think others must be less for themselves to be great. The good way to power is intelligence & wisdom, lifting the whole with you, for there is plenty of room in space for everyone.
13. Truth exists in circular paradoxes; like how you don’t know someone till you stop hating them, and you stop hating them once you know them
14. It’s easy for people to accept the dead since they’re not a threat anymore, but people are prone to reject the living opposition/unknown.
15. Those who actually care for their children will love and discipline them.
16. We can face criticism if the person giving it also knows our good side
17. We lie at funerals; instead we should be honest about who the person was, and their innocent beginnings, the pressures that brought them to where they were. We call out the sin for what it is, not excusing it, but only in being truthful are we empowered and feel peace.
“This is how humans are: We question all our beliefs, except for the ones that we really believe in, and those we never think to question.”
“No human being, when you understand his desires, is worthless. No one’s life is nothing. Even the most evil of men and women, if you understand their hearts, had some generous act that redeems them, at least a little, from their sins.”
“When you really know somebody you can’t hate them. Or maybe it’s just that you can’t really know them until you stop hating them.”
“A Great Rabbi stands, teaching in the marketplace. It happens that a husband finds proof that morning of his wife’s adultery, and a mob carries her to the marketplace to stone her to death.
There is a familiar version of this story, but a friend of mine – a Speaker for the Dead – has told me of two other Rabbis that faced the same situation. Those are the ones I’m going to tell you.
The Rabbi walks forward and stands beside the woman. Out of respect for him the mob forbears and waits with the stones heavy in their hands. ‘Is there any man here,’ he says to them, ‘who has not desired another man’s wife, another woman’s husband?’
They murmur and say, ‘We all know the desire, but Rabbi none of us has acted on it.’
The Rabbi says, ‘Then kneel down and give thanks that God has made you strong.’ He takes the woman by the hand and leads her out of the market. Just before he lets her go, he whispers to her, ‘Tell the Lord Magistrate who saved his mistress, then he’ll know I am his loyal servant.’
So the woman lives because the community is too corrupt to protect itself from disorder.
Another Rabbi. Another city. He goes to her and stops the mob as in the other story and says, ‘Which of you is without sin? Let him cast the first stone.’
The people are abashed, and they forget their unity of purpose in the memory of their own individual sins. ‘Someday,’ they think, ‘I may be like this woman. And I’ll hope for forgiveness and another chance. I should treat her as I wish to be treated.’
As they opened their hands and let their stones fall to the ground, the Rabbi picks up one of the fallen stones, lifts it high over the woman’s head and throws it straight down with all his might it crushes her skull and dashes her brain among the cobblestones. ‘Nor am I without sins,’ he says to the people, ‘but if we allow only perfect people to enforce the law, the law will soon be dead – and our city with it.’
So the woman died because her community was too rigid to endure her deviance.
The famous version of this story is noteworthy because it is so startlingly rare in our experience. Most communities lurch between decay and rigor mortis and when they veer too far they die. Only one Rabbi dared to expect of us such a perfect balance that we could preserve the law and still forgive the deviation.
So of course, we killed him.
Letters to an Incipient Heretic”
“Every person is defined by the communities she belongs to.”
“He loved her, as you can only love someone who is an echo of yourself at your time of deepest sorrow.”
“But when it comes to human beings, the only type of cause that matters is final cause, the purpose. What a person had in mind. Once you understand what people really want, you can’t hate them anymore. You can fear them, but you can’t hate them, because you can always find the same desires in your own heart.”
“Sickness and healing are in every heart; death and deliverance in every hand.”
“The difference between raman and varelse is not in the creature judged, but in the creature judging. When we declare an alien species to be raman, it does not mean that they have passed a threshold of moral maturity. It means that we have.”
“It’s the most charming thing about humans. You are all so sure that the lesser animals are bleeding with envy because they didn’t have the good fortune to be born Homo sapiens.”
“Maybe she couldn’t know who she was today. Maybe it was enough to know that she was no longer who she was before.”
“We’ve devoted our lives to learning about them!” Miro said. Ender stopped. “Not from them.”
“Order and disorder’, said the speaker, ‘they each have their beauty.”
“Dona Crista laughed a bit. “Oh, Pip, I’d be glad for you to try. But do believe me, my dear friend, touching her heart is like bathing in ice.”
I imagine. I imagine it feels like bathing in ice to the person touching her. But how does it feel to her? Cold as she is, it must surely burn like fire.”
“Quim,” she said, “don’t ever try to teach me about good and evil. I’ve been there, and you’ve seen nothing but a map.”
“He is dangerous, he is beautiful, I could drown in his understanding.”
“You’re cultural supremacists to the core. You’ll perform your Questionable Activities to help out the poor little piggies, but there isn’t a chance in the world you’ll notice when they have something to teach you.”
“You understand that the piggies are animals, and you no more condemn them for murdering Libo and Pipo than you condemn a cabra for shewing up capim.”
That’s right,” said Miro.
Ender smiled. “And that’s why you’ll never learn anything from them. Because you think of them as animals.”
“A strange thing happened then. The Speaker agreed with her that she had made a mistake that night, and she knew when he said the words that it was true, that his judgment was correct. And yet she felt strangely healed, as if simply saying her mistake were enough to purge some of the pain of it. For the first time, then, she caught a glimpse of what the power of speaking might be. It wasn’t a matter of confession, penance, and absolution, like the priests offered. It was something else entirely. Telling the story of who she was, and then realizing that she was no longer the same person. That she had made a mistake, and the mistake had changed her, and now she would not make the mistake again because she had become someone else, someone less afraid, someone more compassionate.”
“The tribe is whatever we believe it is. If we say the tribe is all the Little Ones in the forest, and all the trees, then that is what the tribe is. Even though some of the oldest trees here came from warriors of two different tribes, fallen in battle. We become one tribe because we say we’re one tribe.”
Ender marveled at his mind, this small raman [member of another sentient species]. How few humans were able to grasp this idea, or let it extend beyond the narrow confines of their tribe, their family, their nation.”
-when someone says something to you that could make you angry, realize they are fragile at that time, and don’t make them think you are not on their side
– just because you can explain life with the biological narrative doesn’t mean there still aren’t heroes, right and wrong, good and evil.
-to be creative you must work on more than 1 project at a time
– “Let me tell you about gods,” said Wiggin. “No matter how smart or strong you are, there’s always somebody smarter or stronger, and when you run into somebody who’s stronger and smarter than anybody, you think, This is a god. This is perfection. But I can promise you that there’s somebody else somewhere else who’ll make your god look like a maggot by comparison. And somebody smarter or stronger or better in some way. So let me tell you what I think about gods. I think a real god is not going to be so scared or angry that he tries to keep other people down. For Congress to genetically alter people to make them smarter and more creative, that could have been a godlike, generous gift. But they were scared, so they hobbled the people of Path. They wanted to stay in control. A real god doesn’t care about control. A real god already has control of everything that needs controlling. Real gods would want to teach you how to be just like them.”
-we existed always and were not created
– Man has free will, he asserts, precisely and only because he has always existed: I think that we are free, and I don’t think it’s just an illusion that we believe in because it has survival value. And I think we’re free because we aren’t just this body, acting out a genetic script. And we aren’t some soul that God created out of nothing. We’re free because we always existed. Right back from the beginning of time, only there was no beginning of time so we existed all along. Nothing ever caused us. We simply are, and we always were. (386)
-Don’t blame your OCD on God.
-The benevolent government organizations may not be so benevolent
-One bad act by a person doesn’t represent the larger group. Punish the actor, not his entire ‘species’.
-In mobs, people do things they soon regret.
-“Valentine had long ago observed that in a society that expected chastity and fidelity, like Lusitania, the adolescents who controlled and channeled their youthful passions were the ones who grew up to be both strong and civilized. Adolescents in such a community who were either too weak to control themselves or too contemptuous of society’s norms to try usually ended up being either sheep or wolves- either mindless members of the herd or predators who took what they could and gave nothing.”
-If words are a weapon I am going to give them an arsenal.
-The human brain like a computer could only receive data at certain speeds, go too slow and you lose them.
-There is more to us than our bodies; something which existed before our bodies entered into our bodies, and identified the body as itself. The thing which entered our bodies at the time of our birth has always existed.
-Concerning negative feelings: Such are natural feelings they come and go as quickly, only those who make them a way of life are to be condemned for them.
-Olihado was a good father. He worked for the sake of home. Home wasn’t a side project, it was his main project.
-Ender was never very happy, he was helping, he worried about things, he felt it his duty to help, seek the quote says it better
– loving enough to inflict suffering when it was needed
-The man who has risked his life knows careers are useless. The man who won’t risk his career has a useless life.
-Everyone leaves. Everyone dies. What matters is what you build together before they’re gone.
-Not all iuas (basically meaning intelligences) became great, they could not or would not dare to; they let others control them, always fitting in, being a fringe of a great thing
-The mother tree loved their independence as much as their need. (editor’s note: parents love helping their children, they love even more seeing their children become independent like themselves)
-Sometimes you let go of what you really want for the sake of duty.
– Just because someone’s god is fake does not mean that all gods are fake.
-Ender was bowed down under the weight of burden.
-Ender experienced pain too deep to feel at present, which would tear at him for years to come.
-Create based on ideas. We all have theories, & we live to prove that what we believe is real. We are not rational, we get information which we don’t act on, and we take leaps.
-Even gentle people sometimes conclude that the decision not to kill is a decision to die.
-Their subconscious had already chosen, and their conscious was trying to figure out what the subconscious had already determined.
- General Content Ratings
- The Mission of the Jedi
- The Jedi Religion, & Luke’s Faith Crisis
- Is Religion in Star Wars Occultic / New Age?
- Male Female Power Struggles in Ep. 7-9: Overt Feminism
- Questionable Statements & Titles
- Good Anti-Anger Messages
- Dangerous Yoga & Scarry Force Powers
- Luke Skywalker: The Retired Master & His Late Faith Crisis
- Anakin Skywalker: The Tragic Prodigy
- Additional Resource: Comment On Internal Self Mastery VS External Control, etc.
Star Wars is inherently religious and is a potentially useful and encouraging story for the religious mind. Many atheists dislike it for the supernatural it does contain. It is a story of the battle of good vs evil, and good typically prevailing even against the odds. George Lucas made the force as a non-denominational religious allegory. Just think of it: explaining the force is a great way of introducing the spiritual nature of life to someone who otherwise knows nothing about it.
Star Wars is one rendering of the typical hero story, and as such, with its messages being applicable to the human story in general rather than one culture in specific, it has been admired by people all around the world. Star Wars shows that there is some good in everyone, even fallen characters, and that repentance is available for everyone who will soften their hearts.
The religion depicted in these movies could be confused with New Age religion as it involves meditations, etc. This is a potentially worrisome issue, but the story does take place in an alternate universe where the fullness of religion is not available.
It’s not a top favorite in our home as there are better stories and presentations, and the violence is borderline gratuitous at times, but a familiarity with the story is both enjoyable and instructive on a certain level.
I do prefer episodes 1-6 to 7-9 as the final 3 episodes had more politically correct gestures thrown in, though perhaps not overwhelmingly so.
Star Wars is one of the major stories of our time, and is perhaps worth considering as it is such a large component of modern culture and the philosophies are of interest. This being said, the obsession often associated with Star Wars is akin to idol worship, a level of devotion which should be reserved for the living God rather than these stories of myth. We must keep our hobbies in their proper place.
Science Fiction is about exploring the unknown. Space is the final frontier. It is so unexplored that we postulate the possibility of there being many bazar things out there, but also it’s perhaps a place to learn some epic lessons, and have some epic adventures!
The Mediclorians are microscopic organisms which co-exist in people. They reveal the will of the force. These are strong parallels to true doctrine.
General Content Ratings:
All Star Wars are rated PG, with exception of 3 & 7-9 which are PG-13.
Language: Generally wholesome with a few exceptions. Some name calling. Eps. 7-9 has a few minor swear words.
Costumes: Generally wholesome and modest clothing of robes. I can say that the heroes always chose to dress modestly, which is great. There is one large glaring exception the the wholesome costumes which is quite out of place in the series: that is, the episode 6 Leah prisoner outfit. We know that it wasn’t her choice to wear it (so far as the story goes), but due to the extreme and unnecessary exposure of that costume, I suggest entirely skipping the Java the Hut related scenes (the first few scenes with the prisoner Leah costume) of episode 6. The casino/bar scenes do have a few immodest characters passing by, as is common in those unruly environments. This scene, like the Leah prisoner scene, can be easily skipped without missing essential plots of the story. Unfortunately, Fin calls the casino they’re in while looking for a hacker, a delightsome place. In episode 2 Padme has an immodest midriff outfit.
Fantasy: There is much of the fantastic in these movies. This is potentially dangerous as it desensitizes the viewer to reality. On the other hand, this can stimulate creativity.
Gender Roles: With exception of Eps. 7-9, the male and female roles are typical and appropriate. More on this in a section below.
Violence: The level of violence portrayed in the films are concerning, particular for young audiences. The choreography of the sword play is quite good, especially in Eps. 1-3.
Horror: The final scene of Ep. 9 was particularly terrifying. It included a demon man calling for human sacrifice, transfer of spirits, and dead demons chanting in the background, typical of demonic scenes. This scene is too scarry and will cause nightmares. Exposure to such evil is likely not healthy, especially for children. Also scenes of Sith holding people in the air and choking them are quite terrifying, and exposing children to that requires caution. There is also a scene where a nice robot appears to be possessed by a demon, having red eyes and speaking in a low dark voice. The robot is translating an evil text which is needed to unlock something, but the demon moment is scarry and unnecessary.
Content Conclusion: The concerning factors listed above lower my rating of this film, demoting it from the status of classic, and putting it as only an interesting story to be used sparingly if at all. No story, however, is without flaw, and the fun and lessons of these stories may make it worthwhile for occasional entertainment. Star Wars is extremely popular, and many risk worshipping it by the way they value it above pure religion, thereby making the story into a false idol. Every passion must be kept within the bounds the Lord has set.
The Mission of the Jedi:
Some say the force is a useful analogy of good vs evil; the use of power for good or ill. Jedi is the religion of the light side of the force, which is in direct opposition to the Sith, which is the religion of the dark side of the force.
The Jedi Knight idea is appealing they represent what is good strict discerning and skilled. We all want to be jedi, to be highly trained, and to have access to the supernatural for aid in the cause of truth and right. We want to use the priesthood to save the world. The Jedi Knight is the equivalent, in the Star Wars universe, of an High Priest in the Melchizedek Priesthood.
The Jedi master themselves, and fight the dark within themselves first and foremost. They aren’t in the business of conquering and obtaining control over everything, just in preserving the rights of the people.
Jedi conquer the evil within, the anger. Anger leads to the dark side. It is not the Jedi way, for example, to kill an unarmed opponent, no matter how dangerous. They instead should capture them and bring them to the authorities for trial. Part of the fall of Anakin was in listening to corrupt advice to kill a powerful though unarmed foe. Luke and others teach that if you strike down someone in anger, you won’t be free of them, but to the contrary, their memory will continue to haunt your conscience throughout your life.
Their weapon of choice is a short range saber, which suggests self-defense, rather than offensive conquest and overwhelmingly powerful weaponry. Their skill with this weapon comes from not only practice, but from being in touch with spiritual forces which guide their hands.
They help the Republic stand against the tyranny of the Empire as their job is to protect people, not to gain power.
The Jedi Religion, & Luke’s Faith Crisis
Jedi are specifically called a religion in several episodes.
Luke has a faith crisis wherein he says the Jedi religion is both unimportant and historically ineffective. This faith crisis is overcome with the help of a master Jedi named Yoda, but the viewer could see this as an attack on religion.
Burning the temple and scriptures were a sign of looking beyond those and finding the true meaning of the religion, but the viewer could see this as an attack on religion.
Burning of the jedi temple and sacred texts could be to say we need modern revelation even more than texts, which is true. But it could also send a bad message of rejecting the religious world view, and trivializes the importance of temples in the religious world. This being said, we remember this is an alternate universe with different religious requirements. Religion as revealed to the Jedi is not the fullness of the gospel, after all. The only danger is in a viewer compartmentalizing this scene, and walking away saying, ‘yes, lets go burn temples and scriptures, we don’t need them anymore!’ The mature viewer would hopefully walk away saying, ‘alas, temples and scriptures are important, but living a life of faith to help change the world is the most important of all.’
Luke overcomes his faith crisis and finds again meaning in the Jedi religion. He learns the true meaning of the religion which is beyond histories and books. He tells Rey that he was wrong in fleeing to that island, and that that decision was based in fear.
There’s an easter egg image of the sacred Jedi ancient texts being on board the Millennium Falcon at the end. This is part of what could have been meant by the statement that they had everything they needed. This is quite interesting and good, as even though faith in action is the most important, religious texts are VERY important.
Another character of interest on the topic of faith in the order is Qui Gon Jin. He wasn’t allowed on the council as he didn’t always follow the guidelines. Qui Gon was committed to do what he feels right even when it sometimes clashes with the counsel. He was more in tune with the force than the counsel on several occasions, and he seems to have approached this insight with an appropriate amount of humility and order.
Is Religion in Star Wars Occultic / New Age?
A concern with the Jedi religion is that it has similarities to the New Age religion. On the other hand, this takes place in an alternate universe with different conditions and powers.
The Jedi have a sort of yoga-related out of body experience. This is dangerous.
Images of people using a power to choke each other, push each other, etc., are particularly horrifying.
The force is accessed not by obedience to God but by getting in tune with nature. Seems like yoga and new age. The other view of this is the god is the god of nature, and their access to him as they knew him was through nature. That was all that was revealed to them in that age, they did their best.
A friend had this to say about potentially dangerous messages in the Star Wars movies, “Star Wars is an inherently religious movie if your religion is the occult or the New Age. Occultism seeks to access or manipulate supernatural or paranormal powers. In Star Wars, occult elements include levitation, telepathy, telekinesis, mind reading, divination, clairvoyance, and contact with ascended masters (spiritism). In passages such as Deuteronomy 18, Scripture forbids occult practices, which rely not on God but on evil powers. And the consequences of Star Wars is now we have an entire generation of Christians who were raised on Star Wars And have embraced New Age Philosophy And mixed it with their so called “Christian” faith who now worship a false Christ with a counterfeit priesthood. And I am mostly talking about Latter Day Saints. And that is why you have half of the church practicing energy healing.”
[Note: the new church handbook specifically says energy healing is not appropriate for us to do.]
This being said, no analogy is perfect, so if you look hard enough you will find problems.
Another pointed out the lack of God and Christ characters in Star Wars, “all of the Star Wars shows, including The Mandalorian depict a universe where no God or Christ are necessary. They are replaced by a generic “Force” that can be used for good or bad depending on an individual’s sensitivity and skill using it. IMHO, it models Energy Healing more than anything else. I don’t see any Heavenly Father or Christ figures, so all the other councils and power structures are simply occultish. Good and bad without God and Christ are simply bad.”
This being said, just because there is “no God” that doesn’t mean it is saying “you don’t need God.” if everything we consume has to have the same message, out options will be pretty limited.
The display of power is often frightening. Sometimes God and his servants are charged with bringing down civilizations, etc., by fire and so forth. It is always sad when people die or get hurt, however necessary it may be. Evil must also be allowed to exist, and it is not pretty. The horror of evil and the tragic outcomes of evil doers are part of what teach us to avoid evil. This being said, we should be careful about exposure to these things, particularly with young audiences. These movies are borderline gratuitously violent. We should certainly avoid movies which are overly gruesome, violent, etc. in their portrayal of things, even if the meaning behind it is good vs evil, as that message can get lost in the corrupt entertainment of the terror.
Male Female Power Struggles in Ep. 7-9: Overt Feminism:
Repeatedly women rebuke men. There are hardly any male figures who have any sort of authority over women at all. This is obviously taken too far, and is not an isolated event. Additionally, the men are often showed as inferior to the women, and as goofy or lucky rather than highly skilled and with self-control like the women are. The “best pilot” guy is soon seen as highly inferior to Rey.
They overly load the last three movies with female characters in the war roles, suggesting that the woman have real meaning only in these roles, and not in the private roles of the home, the relationships, etc. In reality, men are nothing but the women have taught them to be, which means women are central to everything, but sometimes in more private settings.
Rose stops Fin from doing epic heroic move that could’ve saved them. She said save not destroy, but he was destroying in order to save. Her stunt to save him could have easily resulted in many people dying, and the whole rebellion failing. She put her personal feelings above her duties. This is what lead to Anakin’s downfall: putting his relationships on such a pedestal that he justified personal unheroic and even immoral acts to protect them.
In Eps. 7-9, they make a point of calling Leah “general” rather than “princess”. When she is called princess, its by the enemy, and is derogatory (with the exception of her funeral, which could be another issue in and of itself).
Further the message of Rey being better than everyone despite her zero experience had a pretty obvious message of “anything men can do women can do better.” Satan continues to attempt to pit men against women, and he does this by manipulating gender roles, abilities, and expectations, making them into a competition rather than a coherent team effort with specialized abilities. Its not inherently criminal that they had a female as the main hero in the last 3 films, its that they used it as an over the top politically correct message. All of this said, I consider these last 3 films to add little to nothing to the Star Wars story, and even potentially dangerous.
Questionable Statements & Titles
Some could interpret some statements of Obi-Wan as relativistic. In Return of the Jedi, Obi-Wan states, “Many of the truths we cling to depend on our point of view.” Prior to this, Obi-Wan justifies a lie by stating, “What I told you was true, from a certain point of view.”
The titles of episodes 7-9 are potentially questionable. First we have the force awakening. Fair enough. But then is The Last Jedi. This could suggest (face value (which is as far as many of the masses get)) that the need for Jedi (religion) is over. Then we have The Rise of Skywalker. This can suggest individualism. It’s no longer about belonging to a greater cause, but all about the self (instead of religion). This can be good or bad depending on how it is seen by the viewer. It doesn’t appear to be the intent of the films to say ‘down with religion’ as Luke really isn’t the last Jedi after all, but are these titles and scenes evidence of a hidden agenda? Perhaps, perhaps not.
The bad guys called the first order is sketch as the first order means gods order and the patriarchy established by God. They do make it seem like Hitler. Are they saying the old ways are Hitler? Perhaps it’s just a name, which could be interpreted bad, but to those who are good it can be good.
A hero says something to the effect of, ‘at least we stole from the bad guys for the sake of the good guys’. This is needed sometimes, but is very questionable. We should not steal. Times of war may require drastic measures against tyrants, but we can’t justify ourselves in going around taking justice into our own hands as an everyday practice.
They failed a mission in a place, but they didn’t like the corruption there, and ended up trashing the place, and said something to the effect of, ‘well we failed here but at least we trashed this corrupt place’. This could lead viewers to think that there is merit in just trashing corrupt places. We should not engage in illegal destruction to property.
The rebels are the heroes. We know rebellion to tyrants is obedience to God, but the viewer could hear these repeated praises of rebels, and think that to be a rebel in general is good. They often glorified in and identified as rebels, rather than identifying as people who were standing for truth and right. It’s a gray area, but concerning enough to mention.
Fin, the African hero, is the first ‘rebel’ soldier introduced. He says this is what the resistance looks like. Was it calling Africans to rebel?
Good Anti-Anger Messages:
Luke and others say that if you strike someone down in anger, they aren’t gone, you haven’t solved your problem by eliminating them, but to the contrary, they are all the more your problem, haunting you from then on. The memory of your evil deed burning the conscience.
The dark side has power from anger, the light side has power from being free from anger. Power exists on both sides, which is true, but the one is evil, the other good. Where we chose to get our power from is the test of our souls.
Luke: The Hero & His Late Faith Crisis
Luke portrays the typical hero as described by Joseph Campbell, who specifically used the Star Wars story as an example of the heroes journey (he may not have the same view of the character Rey, however).
Luke conquers his dark side when he has the opportunity to kill Vader but does not. It is a mistake his father (Vader) made, but which he does not. His fate is not determined by the mistakes of his father. Conquering ones self is, after all, the theme of the Jedi religion/order.
Like Anakin, Luke is overly committed to relationships, and the Jedi again expresses concern about this. Ultimately, this works out well for Luke, as he refuses to kill his evil father when he has the chance, and merely disarms him instead. See the Anakin section for more discussion on this.
Luke’s faith crisis stemmed from his typical fixation with the future rather than the present. He makes a critical mistake in prematurely judging one of his students, and in an attack on that student (attempting to prevent the great evil he foresaw the student causing), Luke inadvertently creates the evil in the student from the trauma of the attack. He inadvertently creates the evil by being overly concerned about the future. Yoda reminds him of this character flaw in Ep. 8. Luke later learns from his mistakes, regains faith in the Jedi religion, and helps in the rebellion against the tyrannical 1st Order regime.
In Luke’s cave experience, he sees the dark side of his angry self. Well, for we all have parts about ourselves which we need to conquer (except perhaps for Ren, she appears to be an angel whose only flaw is not knowing who her parents are…).
Anakin: The Tragic Prodigy
The fall of Anakin from the light to the dark was a very powerful lesson which can help us avoid similar mistakes. In his attempts to ‘save those he loves’, he brings great destruction, as he goes about it in an evil way. This shows that the ends don’t justify the means. In other words, you can’t do bad for the sake of a good goal, or it all turns on its head and results in epic loss.
The Jedi counsel are concerned about him due to his overly obsessive connections to his relationships. It isn’t good that the Jedi are celibate (they forbid marriage in their order), but Anakin does have issues in over commitment to relationships. When someone is so committed to their relationships that they make moral compromises, this is evil. He starts doing bad things to try and preserve those he loves. He starts killing everyone who hurts those he loves. He turns to the dark side to try and get extra power to preserve those he loves. In the end however, his love for his children helps him turn to the light side again, as he destroys the evil man who was torturing his child. Learning that his child was yet alive was an opportunity for him to right some of his wrongs.
The Jedi order doesn’t allow marriage and sexuality, so Anakin goes underground in his love for Padme, they have an secret wedding. It was great that they did actually marry! Lucas got this right! Heroes should marry. Marriage is natural and should not be forbidden to any. Forbidding it is error, and often results in tragedy. Anakin in his genius, overrode the false Jedi tradition of no marriage, similar to Martin Luther’s marriage in rebellion to the false traditions in the Catholic church for priests not to marry.
Anakin has no father. His father was ‘the spirit of God’ or the Medaclorians. Its a similar narrative to the birth of Christ. Comparisons of Anakin and Christ are quite limited however, as Christ never fell. Anakin is the chosen one of prophecy to restore balance to the force. Though he falls, he does ultimately fulfill the prophecy by destroying the sith Lord Darth Sideous who had brought back the Sith from the millennia of extinction. In some other Star Wars stories, it is suggested that Anakin actually did help the Jedi order become more balanced, but that’s a long story likely not worth chasing.
A mirror of Vader ultimately turning back to the light is seen in the later character of Kylo Ren, though his story, as well as the story of Rey, adds little to nothing to the story.
I found this comment very insightful guide to the overall Star Wars theme of dark force and light force, etc., and it gives more insight into the compelling story of the tragic Anakin Skywalker. It compares the goodness of self control vs the evil of the need to control things, and shows how that need to control lead to the fall of Anakin:
“If we consider the distinction between the desire for internal order and external order, I imagine this would help us better understand the light sides apparent interest in order (internally) and the dark sides apparent interest in order (externally). Consider the points below:
The Jedi, or the light side, were never interested in establishing an external order in terms of galactic governance or otherwise, their goal has always been the cultivation of a personal, internal order; maintaining control over personal emotions, freeing oneself from personal attachments, achieving a calmness over the passions, and to act only in defense of oneself or others and never to achieve ones ends or for reasons of aggression.
The dark side of the force, on the other hand, serving as a mirror image for the light side, is deeply engaged in and always aspiring to achieve dominance and control over the external world and its inhabitants. This would appear to be partially a result of the chaos that reigns within their own mind and spirit, where the passions are permitted to dominate their psyche and rule over their conscience and intellectual faculties. The need to satisfy their own ambitions, passions, and maintain a hold over personal and/or physical attachments, combined with the aggressive tendencies cultivated by the dark side, instills the desire among all dark side force wielders to twist the world in a way that satisfies their own wants and apparent needs.
This was ultimately Anakin’s undoing, and explains his departure from the light. He could not let go of his personal attachment to his mother, Padme, or his then unborn children. The need to control future events, and to order the world in his favor, created a chaotic disorder in his mind compelling him to act in ways he knew were wrong and conflicted with the Jedi way.
1) He killed the Sandpeople in revenge for the harm that befell his mother:
2) killed Count Dooku in part due to the loss of his own hand to Dooku in a previous battle (attachment to a hand, funny);
3) participated in the death of Mace Windu to protect the Emperor so he could later save Padme;
4) killed the Jedi because they were also now a threat to the Emperors survival and would challenge the Senate;
5) turned against Kenobi because of jealousy and his belief that Kenobi had turned Padme against him (loss of love);
6) killed the Trade Federation leaders to facilitate an orderly Empire and end any threat to the Empire and those he loved;
7) filled with hate when Kenobi severed three more of his limbs and took Padme from him;
8) Finally, the death of Padme and supposedly his children (at his own hands) sealed his fate as a Sith (loss of love, regret of past actions, his need to bring Padme back via the dark side of the force). Vader’s spirit was consumed with chaotic feelings of guilt, regret, loss, hate, and the desire for revenge driving his need for order in the external world and to fulfill his ambition to learn the secrets of the dark side.
Upon learning that Luke and Leia were alive, the conflict between his light and dark sides was reborn. He now had the opportunity to right some past wrongs, to save his son and daughter where he could not save Padme. He probably now knew the Emperors claims of the ability to resurrect the dead were also a lie. In the concluding scenes of Return of the Jedi, the orderly Empire and the Emperor himself now threatened Vader’s attachment to his own children.
The Emperor failed to realize that the very same passions that had once led Vader to the dark side now led him back to the light; his love for his children. This is even more clear when we realize why Kenobi and Yoda are so concerned with Luke’s attachment to his friends and his impulsiveness. They feared that the same passions that were the folly of Vader would now be the folly of Luke. And they nearly were. But in the end, Luke’s passions and faith in his father proved a force for virtue and light, as the love of Luke restored Vader’s goodness in the love of his son.
…I feel this is a very coherent and consistent narrative device that drives the original 6 films, though, it certainly was violated, and horrifically so, in The Last Jedi.”
[end of Comment from Jon Lawrence in a thread of a video by Jonathan Pageau, “Star Wars: The Last Jedi | Dismantling All Order” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CyB3BxGrUvU. The lecture at this link is also of interest, Jonathan suggests that the old Star Wars were about freedom, heroism in the face of tyranny; the new Star Wars ideas have changed into social justice and safety from oppression. Jonathan’s analysis are through the lens of a religious world view.]
While we do need some training on how to be tolerant to those different than ourselves, the X-men series was over the top propaganda for homosexuality. The producers admit this, and this alone is sufficient reason to boycott the series.
These are a few notes from this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2qWceLl65IM&t=24s
Put the link of good fight ministries
These are a few notes from that
the producers of the films specifically said in their own words that these movies were meant to be analogy of mutant is homosexual
There’s a coming out of the closet scene one of the movies where a boy admits to his parents that he’s a mutant and his parents try to talk to him about it and the boys mutant friends are over there with him and bully the parents for even questioning mutant status
Magneto played by that one guy I have to find his name Ian McClellan or somebody he wasn’t going to be in the movie but it’s only when he found out it was an analogy for gay rights that he decided it would be worth his time. he says whenever he visits a hotel he finds the Bible and rips out the page in Leviticus against homosexuality he says he’s done that to around 70 Bibles
There’s a luciferian scene where a mutant jumps out of a window and is falling like Lucifer the fallen star and then last minute catches himself with magnificent wings it’s about saving ourselves instead of needing a savior
One mutant is called the beast and he is a diplomat who tries to get laws passed in favor of mutants
Kids see it and list after their powers and looks
Grown women in a bed together
Many lesbian themes
Songs about exploring forbidden paths
Songs about letting go of social norms
Frozen is a mockery of Puritanism, of Martin Luther, of everything Christianity and Christian culture stands for.
It is both interesting and ironic to compare the sung speech of the character Elsa in Frozen with that of Martin Luther before the Holy Roman Emperor. Both say, “Here I stand.” But Luther meant he was free from fear and from other authorities because he was bound by the Word of God and its norms. Elsa speaks for the contemporary culture by saying she can be free only if there are no boundaries at all.
The phrase “Here I Stand” has gone down as a famous and treasured Christian motto from the Reformation. For centuries it was recognized as the call of those who were brave enough to stand by the scriptures, to stand by the truth and to stand by God, whatever the cost. Play video
And now…… we have a female protagonist, in the midst of utter rebellion to God and His law, stamping her foot down and shouting, “Here I stand” after she has thrown away here crown (symbolic?), her robe (symbolic), “loosened” up her previously tight and refined hair, changed her manner of walking from those of an innocent child to a seductive woman, exchanged her clothes for what Liz called a “very immodest and revealing dress” and a host of other symbolic changes. Just an accident? Not a chance.
The Let It Go song says, “No right, no wrong, no rules for me. I’m free!!”
At this point it goes without saying that Elsa is not a good example for our children to become obsessed with.
Disney tried to get people more accepting of homosexual relationships in a more subtle unconcious way with this movie, because they knew that christians were not ready to let their children watch a movie that was openly about homosexuality. The first time I watched it, I loved it and didn’t really notice anything wrong with it, but later as I thought about it and watched it again, I realized that it turned the standard Disney movie, of girl meets boy and longs to be married, they fall in love and live happily ever after, on it’s head. They made a mockery of Anna falling in love with a man and wanting to marry him, by the song that she and the bad guy sing together and then it turns out that she was just stupid and naive for wanting love and marriage, because the man she loved was evil. The song let it go, talks about letting go of doing what’s good and and worrying about that anymore and just doing whatever she wants to. It also shows how the main character, Elsa was the strong, smart powerful one, because she doesn’t need a man or marriage. It also shows how the standard “true love” that saves all can be between two women and doesn’t need to be between a man and a woman. There are lots of other subtle things, but those are the main things that stick out to me. It is very anti marriage between a man and a woman and has lots of subtle messages that the love of 2 woman is what is the greatest of all love!
The cinematogogrophy, animation and cgi in this movie is one of Disney’s most dazzling. They followed all the rules of aesthetic and made it an absolutely enjoyable movie to watch. I think that was designed on purpose to distract from the messages. To create a positive experience while listening to the awful programming. Like a spoon full of sugar to help the messages go down. Let it go is one of the most enchanting scenes Disney has ever created.
Is the Matrix an analogy of resisting futuristic tyranny, or an attempt to dismantle the doctrine of Christ? Though I can see either interpretation, the following evidence suggests the latter.
TRINITY AS THE UNHOLY GHOST
NEO AS ANTI CHRIST
MORPHEUS AS LUCIFER
ORACLE AS FALSE PROPHET
ZION AS HELL
CREATOR GOD AS EVIL TYRANT
If for no other reason than the unclean content that fills this movie, this movie would be detectable as a movie inspired by Satan. God doesn’t teach with such means. This reveals the movie’s overall philosophy is not pro-God/nature and anti-tyranny, but rather pro Lucifer and tyranny.
-The movies are inherently violent, and gratuitously so.
-Several characters are dressed very immodestly.
-There is at least one sex scene.
-Frequent foul language
TRINITY AS THE UNHOLY GHOST
-Neo meets Trinity, the Holy Ghost symbol, at a dirty bar.
-Her costume is immodest in how tight it is
-Trinity hovers in a bird shape, making the symbolism increasingly obvious
-Neo dies and Trinity in her kiss gives him the breath of life resurrecting him, and sparks are shown in the background, giving the spark of life. So this questionable character somehow has power to bestow life.
-She saves Neo at a place with a street sign of obvious biblical significance
NEO AS ANTI CHRIST:
-Neo is obviously a Christ figure. He is a Messianic hero. This is a useful motif in many stories and analogies. However, the way he is depicted and the philosophies he espouses suggest that he is more of an antichrist than a Christ.
-Neo says he will show a world without boundaries or limits. But of course, such a world cannot be.
-Neo dies in a cross shape
-Thomas A Anderson is Neo’s name; Thomas is the doubting apostle, the one who demanded tangible evidence.
-Neo (new) Ander (man) son (son): New son of man.
-Neo finally ascends like Christ; questionable music is played during this by heavy metal band Rage Against The Machine.
-Neo was much more violent than Christ as far as methods of revolution go.
MORPHEUS AS LUCIFER
-He offers Neo the fruit of the tree via the pills which have power to eject him from the Matrix
-tells Neo the Matrix is what he experiences when he goes to work (communist anti work), when he goes to church (anti religion), and when he pays his taxes (anti government and social order)
-He tells Neo to follow a white porn symbol rabbit to a bar
-He gives Neo instantaneous skills which Neo doesn’t have to work for. This resembles communism of getting things for free, and resembles deals with the Devil, where in exchange for the soul, a candidate gets great skill, etc.
-The ship of the rebels is called Nebuchadnezzar, symbolizing the stone that would smash the icon.
ORACLE AS FALSE PROPHET
-She tells Neo that he is NOT the one, lying to him because ‘that’s what he needs to hear’. But true prophets don’t lead people via lies.
-She gets turned into an agent, whose job is to police and destroy those who question the Matrix
ZION AS HELL
-Zion is depicted as a nasty rave
-Zion is depicted as underground deep in the earth, the typical area symbolized as hell.
-Everyone is jumping around in a disorderly way, and scantily clothed.
CREATOR GOD AS EVIL TYRANT
-Some argue the Matrix is good as it suggests resistance against a futuristic tyranny. Here I’ll explain why I don’t think this was really the case.
-The philosophies that inspired the matrix weren’t that the God of nature is good and the system of control is bad, but that Jehovah the creator made this earth as a place of control, that our bodies are bad and usurp our spirits, that Lucifer was the good guy, and that Jehovah was banned for his tyranny.
-The creator of the world as we know it is shown as the bad guy. This is anti God. It isn’t saying the false system is bad and nature is good, its saying life on earth itself is bad.
-Several homicides have said they did what they did because they were freeing people from the Matrix.
-Good Fight Ministries Gnostic etc.
-Jonathan Pageau analysis of the Matrix
Let’s look at some pros and cons of Harry Potter, a hot topic movie for many religious people. Harry Potter is the poster child for “don’t read it, magic is evil!”, but those who have read it often say otherwise.
It’s about friendship and exploration.
The movie has a theme that the righteous don’t fear death, that they would rather die than betray their friends. This is a noble theme, and is seen among the Christian martyrs. There is a movement today to downplay standing up for truth, calling such ‘rigid’ and ‘extreme’. But Christ said that if we deny him before others, he will deny us before the father.
The books are more solid than the movies, but the movies did a decent job of portraying some noble elements of the hero story.
Harry often helps others even when it means losing temporal fame, success, etc. He often helps even his enemies to have mercy.
“We must all face the choice between what is right and what is easy.”
Ancestors help Harry in trying times, they are always with him.
Bashes overly controlling government who tries to control a false narrative with the veil of politically correctness, controlled press, and a gang of inquisitors.
Says that murder rips the soul apart as it’s a violation against nature.
Shows how death and hardship are a real part of the efforts to make the world a better place and take on real evil.
Depicts the main characters as adults married with children. This you wouldn’t think is a high bar, but in today’s family starved culture, it’s good to have examples who have intentional family lives.
There is often a dark theme in these movies which can indicate it is of the devil. It is also sometimes very silly and takes things like ghosts very lightly. It may be giving too much exposure to evil things which we have no business messing with (like the Dementors), even when they are depicted as being the bad guys. Summoning and dismissing various types of spirits like its all a game, this is concerning to say the least. This is certainly not a series for small children as it is simply a scarry series. Torture, death, and demonic possession occur several times. These horrors are performed by evil people, but their mere presence may still be too overwhelming to be considered reasonably good entertainment.
The use of magic is shown as neutral (usable for good or evil) when in reality it may be all evil. Several magical elements are presented. Many argue that all magic is bad, that there is no ‘white and black’ magic, but that it is all the same. Others argue that the fictional world presented is removed from reality as a form of allegorical education which relates to peoples across cultures.
Students begin kissing at age 15, and there is lots of kissing at 16. In cultures where young marriage is discouraged, young kissing should also be discouraged. Young romance should only be encouraged in civilizations where young marriage is also encouraged, as romance without marriage often leads to heartache and even physical and spiritual disaster. Further, Snape’s obsession with another married man’s wife isn’t right.
There is a partial nudity scene in movie seven (which movies can scarcely be disconnected with the books). This is a red flag may indicate depraved character of the producers, and therefore deeper issues. If you do chose to show the movie, be sure to know where that part is to skip is for your children.
The personal character of JK Rowling is perhaps questionable, and there is some evidence that she herself is into witchcraft, casting spells on her books, etc. She, like many authors, speaks of ideas just coming to her as she writes, but this is quite typical of writing. It is true however, that the spirit dictating these things was either good, or evil. You may decide which.
Many Harry Potter book fans are quite upset about the Hollywood movies based on them, and don’t watch them as a matter of principle. This may typically just be textual content issues rather than moral issues, however. Those highly concerned may wish to preview the texts and films for themselves before determining whether to moderately incorporate this story into their homes.
Certainly an obsession with these stories is, as is the case with any story, idolatry. The theme of our homes (the posters on the walls, the main conversation, the highest hopes and reverence) must be centered upon Jesus Christ and His gospel.
Here are potentially fun and uplifting video games:
My top suggestions would be puzzle based games and simulators which are not just fun, but are educational at the same time. We have so little time in life, and we can often multitask.
This being said, sometimes fun for the sake of fun is worthwhile. Here are some ideas which are fun and perhaps education too:
Ratchet & Clank
Donkey Kong 3D
Here are a few popular video game choices I would not suggest:
Star Wars Battlefront – Likely too violent
Lord of the Rings – Likely too violent
Assassins Creed: Some like this due to it being very historically accurate, but I find it too violent, despite the ability to turn off the blood/gore/foul language.
Final Fantasy – there are some questionable characters, costumes, language, and violence. The time invested is also perhaps extreme.