Thursday, November 01, 2007

Pullman's latest books

There was an interview with Philip Pullman in the paper today, since he spoke last night at the university of Toronto. His books are bestsellers, not too far behind the Potter series. But Christians have a problem with them because of their anti-church slant. Pullman is a confessed atheist, and I remember when my husband was reading the Golden Compass to our son and I was half listening, I remember feeling alarmed over some of the passages, and that was before I'd heard any criticism of the series.

Yes, it alarms me that there's a growing fascination for darkness, and yes it alarms me that Christian children are being fed a steady diet of the most subtle things that pull in other directions. But it's also interesting that kids -- and adults -- are fascinated by the sheer power of evil and the absolute power of goodness to overcome it. Maybe this speaks to what we in the church have done with the scary events of the Old Testament -- with battles, and visions, and vengeance and exile.

Why is the church ignoring the full range of human emotion and actions in its efforts to be nice, and good guys? The result is a church rendered lifeless, bloodless and ineffectual. Maybe we could take a few lessons from Pullman's book, instead of denying their power.


Belinda said...

Very well put Cardinella. I read a great book while on vacation--Angel in the Alley, by Keith Clemons. It's a Christian book, but the hero had gender identity issues growing up and his wife in the story has agoraphobia. The people were real, frail, human beings. I was telling a friend about it and she said that so often Christian books lack the "grit" of real life. It's as if we have to sanitize life--as if we're scared to death to be human.

Angcat said...

Hi Cardinella,
I'm a friend of Belinda's and love your blog. I was just reading your post on Spiritual Mismatches about Hosea. It can all be hard, even when both spouses are Christians but see things very differently. But Blue Like Jazz seems to have helped us find a common ground.

Have you ever read Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers? It's one of the most beautiful and compelling stories I've ever read. She puts together a more modern (last century) version of Hosea and Gomers story. It's all that you and your Pastor were talking about.
If you have a few moments at the end of the day here and there, it's really worth the read.