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Today was the release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Pt 1 (Well technically yesterday but I watched it today and it was good, brilliant, fantastic, molto bene alons-y…sorry got a bit carried away there…) Needless to say a great movie, but in its release…one of my favorite movie series of all time… I came back to something that I have been thinking about often. It is the perfect time for this blog.

Now back years and years ago I was at one of my friend’s house, and we were watching something on the TV…a Discovery Program or something of that nature.

Now the younger brother asked something, and I seem to recall the answer being, don’t believe things you see on TV…or something of that nature.

And yeah, sure I can see his point to an extent but it got me thinking, and even at the time…I was quite puzzled and affronted a little bit at first.

And the reason was, in reflecting about it years later, is that fiction is…or was rather…an important part of my development.

Still is, I still really enjoy fiction and movies and books and video games.

I suppose the main reason comes from the Glenn Beck theme song that he has been using for a majority of 2010:

In it, it states that we must look for answers everywhere. No matter how dark, gloomy, depressing, or fictional, we must look for answers.

We must have our eyes open to all possibilities and we must listen and be willing to learn from any number of sources, and then incorporate it and act accordingly.

To try to discern the best answers and the correct answers from the information you are assimilating.

Because that is how I did it…I think…I mean I think I turned out OK in my upbringing…don’t you?

Because shows and fiction and movies and books teach proper principles, they teach lessons, and they do things that can point one in the right direction to be good.

They are there if you know where to look for them. If you are willing to listen and to learn and be open. They are there…all around us in fact…everywhere…and some of them can be quite…subtle.

But whether it is Babylon 5, or Harry Potter, or Lord of the Rings, or Star Wars or…even more recently…the Overton Window.

They can teach lessons on Liberty, Freedom, Friendship, loyalty, and love.

After all perhaps one of the better lines from Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone is Hermione’s chat to Harry: ‘me? books and cleverness…there are more important things…like friendship…and loyalty…’

And after all, the fiction that is the best, is grounded in reality or real principles.

And we should trust people to discern lessons…the correct lessons..while avoiding the evil and the bad. In the franchises, and in the arguments.

We can be the guide.

We can be the guide to ignore the Voldemort’s and the Twilight’s of the world. Or avoid acting them out.

We can learn the proper answers when it comes to Government and Liberty, in fact there are a lot of motifs and scenes of interest throughout both Harry Potter and Babylon 5 showing the dangers of overbearing Government…even those that seem benign.

In fact, I think that fiction is one of the most important way of getting lessons, especially today.

People ignore things all the time, we do not learn proper real world examples, but yet we do seem to listen to Fiction. Maybe we should listen to it more.

But the point is it is there, it is there if we want to listen to them and it does get the blood going and thinking.

After all many of the deepest conversations I have had in my life has followed National Treasure or some other movie that we just got out of the theater for.

After all fiction inspires you to be better, inspires you to look into something, look up something, to gain further knowledge of the movie and its real world icon.

After all it inspires you to be like the heroes on the big screen, or the pages of a book.

Again as long as you can learn the proper lessons.

So if we CAN learn the proper lessons, then we must encourage people to gain knowledge from all sources and all areas. I do not think we have much choice in the matter.

And on another note, in looking at the numbers from the opening weekend of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows…..61 Million Dollars…I think we have found a way to solve our debt problems. Hehe…just a thought.

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2 Comments

  1. I have to disagree with you on this one….

    “Because shows and fiction and movies and books teach proper principles, they teach lessons, and they do things that can point one in the right direction to be good.”

    Because often times that is NOT the case. True some works of fiction get you thinking and pondering some aspects of morality or ethics or just what is good vs evil….HOWEVER, if you are not FIRST grounded firmly in your beliefs or convictions then you are easily tossed around in the murky waters of what Hollywood presents up to you …and that can be really really dangerous.

    I just watched a program on the History channel that wasn’t really supposed to be fiction but was it accurate? Well to the untrained eye it may have been…and it could have lured a lot of people into the wrong kinds of thinking…or believing. I think we cannot rely on Hollywood to teach us right from wrong or what to believe in cuz so many times they rely on over the top extreme drama to play on your emotions and promote excitement …after all we go to these things to get that rush ….that entertainment provides.

    But we cannot allow our ears to be tickled by that. If we can to use it as a launching off point for discussion by which we compare our own theology against it….using our own convictions as the plum line then I would say go for it. But if you are using Star Wars or Harry Potter….or Babylon 5 to help you form your basic theological convictions then that is a big problem IMO. That’s like entering a war….without being properly prepared for battle…cuz we do NOT have any proper battle plan or our own arsenal persay. If you are not firmly on the ground in your own faith and convictions then you will be tossed about mercilessly when you are facing such information.

    Just as we know we are assaulted everyday with temptation and just following after that “good feel feeling” here on earth and we know who uses that time and time again to get us where he wants us. So yeah….while fiction is fun and does have it’s place in the entertainment sphere of our world I think we cannot lose sight of the fact that it is just fiction and we cannot be drawn into it or lulled and become blinded by our fascination with it.

    As it states in the Bible….and you’ll have to forgive…you know I am going to give my own Christian perspective on this….just to counter your pagan one…..this is what the Bible has to say about this:
    2 Timothy 4:3-8 (New International Version, ©2011)

    3 For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. 4 They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. 5 But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry.

    6 For I am already being poured out like a drink offering, and the time for my departure is near. 7 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. 8 Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day—and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing.

    • I was not talking abotu theology per se but I suppose I have picked up a few things from various places that could be described as a certain Religious belief…. especially from Star Wars.

      And, well I first have to add that I consider myself fortanate in several things when it comes to entertainment. Mainly in what I watched, and did not watch, and what I was discouraged from watching by my Dad to keep me away from the more lowly sorts of entertainment like the Simpsons, at least at a young age. :P. Instead, Star Trek, Babylon 5, Star Wars, and Stargate. And then eventually Doctor Who. Now yes, your basic point is a sound one, you should not get too obsessed and it could be dangerous if one does not learn the proper lessons.

      But fiction has two big advantages over real life. One it allows you to consider and train yourself to consider extreme possibilities. Whether it is Tom Clancy, or more regular Science Fiction, or what have you, you learn about new things and it sometimes forces you, if you are honest, to consider extreme possibilities. So that is why some of the things on Beck or in the news does not shock one because they have either, directly or indirectly, seen those same scenarios in a show or a book or a movie. Secondly, the lessons you learn is ultimatley your own. It is a highly individual experience how you react to the characters, the action, the romance, and the over all reaching themes. You and I know this well.

      And also about theology Fiction always has to borrow from real life. As I mentioned. One of the key areas is from Theology, and Religion, you see that all the time from SG, B5, SWs, and others. So even if one is not learning about say ‘religion’ one can still absorb Theological Lessons and God’s Law. Its the only thing that I got really. 😛


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