Friday, April 28, 2006

What part of "fiction" do you not understand?!

Okay, I realize that I am taking something of a risk by making this post. I understand that feelings are running high over this issue and that I may get some, uh, interesting responses. (Dons flame-proof suit.) Please let me make it clear that I am not knocking anyone's beliefs or religion. I don't do controversial, especially not in my blog. I just don't. But this is driving me absolutely bonkers, and I simply must say something.

First, a definition or two that might come in handy. Per, the entry from The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition Copyright © 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company:

fic-tion n.

1.   a) An imaginative creation or a pretense that does not represent actuality but has been invented.
      b) The act of inventing such a creation or pretense.

2.   A lie.

3.   a) A literary work whose content is produced by the imagination and is not necessarily based on fact.
      b) The category of literature comprising works of this kind, including novels and short stories.

Everyone got that? If not, try reading it again. In this case, definition 3a is most relevant to my discussion, though definition 2 is certainly the most succinctt. That's right, everyone, "fiction" is NOT BASED ON FACT. A LIE!! Got it? Good.

Then please, please, oh please tell me why everyone has their knickers in a twist about the book/movie The Da Vinci Code? I don't recall the film being billed as a documentary. Check out the spine of the book or dust jacket. I guarantee you it says "fiction" on it. Or maybe not. It might say "novel," which for your reference is defined by the same American Heritage Dictionary at as:

nov-el(1) n.

1.   A fictional prose narrative of considerable length, typically having a plot that is unfolded by the actions, speech, and thoughts of the characters.
2.   The literary genre represented by novels.

Gee, there's that word again, "fiction." Or, in this case "fictional," but the same idea (see). Made up, fake, untrue. Sensing a pattern here?

So, again, WHY are people declaring war on this poor man's story? Remember, it is a novel. It is fiction. It says so right on the bloomin' book!! I don't hear anyone harping on the people who have all tried to sue Dan Brown for infringing on their copyright (and there have been at least 2, perhaps more). That is the difference. Dan Brown, whether he came up with the idea on his own or read it somewhere else, said "hey, that would make a great novel!" (Please see above definition.) But people like Michael Baigent and Richard Leigh and their book Holy Blood, Holy Grail (and there are plenty of others following similar themes) are being completely ignored by the Vatican, the irate public, and the media alike (except for the lawsuits, of course).

I have news for you, folks. THOSE are the people saying that this theory is FACT! Those are the people whose books specifically state "non-fiction" on the side. That's right. Non-fiction, per and WordNet 2.0, © 2003 Princeton University:

nonfiction n : prose writing that is not fictional

"Not fictional." And yes, you guessed it, says under its "fiction" entry that the antonym is "non-fiction." See, opposites!

So, let me get this straight. We don't care about the people (like Baigent and Leigh) going around saying that these theories are true. We instead are mad at Dan Brown and Ron Howard (the director of the movie version) for producing made up stuff. How does that make any sense?!

Yes, I understand that the fictional novel has a wider reach than the "fact based" book. (Hmm, perhaps this is telling in and of itself, no?) Yes, I understand that it is introducing people to a theory that is in direct contradiction to the teachings of the Christian church. So do a lot of other books and movies, particularly the glut of them that promote violence and promiscuity. Why are those not being singled out? Are you seriously telling me that it is *worse* for people to believe that maybe Jesus was married and had kids, than it is to tell them that murder is good and you should sleep with whoever you want whenever you want?

Per most Christians, the important thing to believe is that Jesus is the Son of God and died to redeem us from our sins. Does it ultimately matter if Jesus was married or not? How does that impact the incredible display of love and sacrifice of The Crucifixionon? How does that affect Jesus's/God's ability or desire to forgive sins and save souls? It doesn't! Believe in Jesus and what He did for you (baptismim may also be required, depending on your denomination), and you are saved. End of story.

The details don't matter. Married or not, pre- or post-ascention, predestination or free will, Catholic vs. Protestant.... these are all issues that Christians have been fighting about for generations upon generations. Does it not occur to anyone that these are all tricks of Lucifer to get Christians to turn on one another instead of to join forces against true evil in this world? TRUE evil, like poverty and drugs and violence and hatred. But are people focused on that? Are people joining together to combat those forces in this world? No.

People are making a big stink over some silly story that some man made up.

Currently feeling: baffled


  1. Right there with you, Erin! I agree with what you have said. Sometimes, this world just baffles me too.

  2. Nice rant.

    Had to laugh though when you referred to Dan Brown as a "poor man." That was unintentionally funny.

    PS His father was one of my math teachers!

  3. Yeah, I didn't get the big deal about it either and cringed when I saw some catholic group wanted a disclaimer to run before the movie, like we aren't smart enough to figure out that Tom Hanks(aka Forest Gump) isn't in a documentary. I can't wait to see the movie!!

    I have read "Holy Blood, Holy Grail" and they are similar in their points(that the grail was a person, child of Jesus) but after that there is a big difference, like The DaVinci code was actually intersting and readable :D

    Personally I just finished "Angels and Demons" and thought it was a *much* better book and I can see where it would be a much better movie!!

  4. Amen to that. I think what they're really afraid of is not that people will believe The Da Vinci Code is fact, but that by exploring a fictional heresy, they might start having their own thoughts about other "real" issues - like, hey, maybe we should let women be priests and stuff.


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