A few weeks back i mentioned about starting to read The Da Vinci Code, and a few nights ago I finished the book. Although I found it an interesting and slightly entertaining read, I wouldn't say it was a great story or style, and I definitely wouldn't say I found it convincing. However, it is easy to see that all those people who don't know anything about Church history could find the book somewhat persuasive, if not even attractive. (I don't claim to know a lot, but I know enough to know that a lot of the historical 'facts' in the books are garbage). Let's face it: the feminists love it for obvious reasons, the people who like to have a excuse to have sex at whim would like it too, etc etc.
But in the end it is a work of fiction, and if Dan Brown thinks he can pass it off as a historical piece with a storyline thrown in, he is sadly mistaken.
If i may, let me address a few the issues raised by the book. (I do not claim to be an expert on any of these topics, but I do write with some conviction.)
Where on earth do people get that the Church is anti-female??? These people never seem to notice that the most important, revered, and venerated human in the history of the Church that wasn't God is a woman (Mary)!! There is no chance that we will become God, so surely this is a significant point.
Also where do people get that the Church considers and portrays sex as a lewd or explicit act? Sex is truly a beautiful and wonderous thing (and the Church considers it as such), but like all things only in the correct context (namely the sanctity of marriage). Sex outside this context is mentally and spiritually dangerous (not to mention health-wise).
There are many others (not to mention the historical inaccuracies of the novel on which there is already a great amount of literature) that I will not go into.
Back to normal blogging:
Yesterday was a bit strange: I had the catch the CityCat into work experience, where I have to get off at the Southbank stop. However, I am so used to catching the CityCat all the way up the river to uni, that I was so zoned out on my iPod (also being tired early in the morning), that i didn't even notice that we had passed Southbank. I was thinking at the time: hey there goes Southbank. hmmm, wait a minute, I was supposed to get off there!!! *expletives removed*. I ended up getting off at North Quay and walking back over Victoria Bridge.
I caught the CityCat again this morning, and made sure i didn't make the same mistake. On today's CityCat I had an interesting conversation with a guy that has been working on the CityCat for almost as long as I have been catching it (at least to uni anyways, which is almost 5 years).
13 thoughts on “Leonardo & City Cat Capers”
The Da Vinci code was never meant to be passed off as a historical text, Dan Brown himself says that it is a purely fictional piece of work and not to be taken as the gospel truth (excuse the pun there but i couldn't resist 🙂 ). People find truth in it because they want to find truth in it, not because it's there.
btw how is sex before marriage a health risk?
L: the problem, as rummy has pointed out, is that many _people_ have taken it on board, not because that was the intention. quite a few (and i speak from what others have said) things in there are true; but also are false. friends of mine from seminary (brisbane college of theology) said that it's basically a good novel with a few dodgy bits at the end. oh, and btw, the 'big bad evil church' deal has been going on for some time 🙂
rummy: health risks include psychiatric, according to some experiments (mental fragmentation from multiple partners). but aside from that, no contraceptive is either failsafe or foolproof.
im not going to deal with the psychiatric 'risk', because, well because i dont feel like it damn it. 🙂
but as far as contraception goes, that risk is there even after you get married. you don't know if the other person is a carrier or not, it's a scary thought.
Dan Brown's 'Fact' page at the beginning, let's say, is a little misleading in terms of it being a fictional piece.
A: To quote pieces like the Templar Revelation etc in the book (which are by _no_ means widely accepted as accurate historical texts) is also misleading. To compare the gnostic gospels (which I admittedly don't know much about) written hundreds of years after Jesus, to the Gospels in the Bible which were written by the same generation as Jesus, says plenty in terms of the historical argument.
Rolando: If every person in the world was monogamous (i.e. one sexual partner for life) how much STDs etc do you think would be spread? (not to say they wouldn't exist, but it definitely wouldn't be such a problem as it is today...)
I tend to agree. What freaked me out was the stuff in Da Vinci's paintings actually being true. But then I thought it's not as if Da Vinci attended the Last Supper so how could he possibly know what it looked like.
I think most people just think because Da Vinci was some famous guy from a really long time ago and so was Jesus then what the book is saying must be true. But what the book also says is Da Vinci was also a prankster, who was well ahead of his time often inserted hidden messages into his portraits as a joke.
You wouldn't exactly that the Mona Lisa is a work of art. After all it's just a picture of him as a woman who is pregnant with man hands who has bad teeth standing in front of a landscape which has just been hit by and earthquake. It is these hidden messages which give his paintings intrinsic value.
Suprisingly, Con has raised a very valuable and significant point:
So what if Leonardo da Vinci painted all the stuff that is described in the novel (ie a woman in the Last Supper)? he lived a full 1500 years after the death of Jesus! If a well known artist/inventor did religious artwork today (like things like a sculpture of a crucifix in a pool or urine (actually done a few years ago in New York)), 500 years from now is that going to be examined for historical and religious significance??
I should probably apologise to everyone who has not yet read the book but still wants to read it.
L: GET BACK TO WORK ya lazy bum
PS What did you mean by 'surprisingly'?
if you'll look to the side, this entry has engendered enough comments to be in the 'most comments' list.
this illustrates something very important about the book - it brings about conversation.
eg: people might think that the Church is anti-female, but until they get some backing they won't bring it up. and when they (think that they) get some backing, they bring it up...and then it can be dealt with.
it's the people that know a little that are the most dangerous, if only because they don't know enough to know how little they know.
oh, and rummy - children are also a massive health risk, for so many reasons.
and a monogamous relationship doesn't get terribly many (if any) std's cooked up without, how do you say, outside interference. at very worst, it doesn't spread.
I'm not saying that it's not a safer option i'm just saying that it's not without risk, as is anything in this world.
ps. do you forget that AIDS (alledgedly) is a man made virus?
just to remain on the top of the comments list...dang da vinci code. at least we're not talking explicitly about the code...
if a risk is so small as to be negligible, should we consider it as a risk? yes, it is possible that a piano could fall on my head, but i don't often consider the possibility (unless, of course, i put myself in a position where it is likely; but that would only strengthen my point).
and yes, i was aware that aids is manmade. i wasn't, however, aware that anything was alleged about it.
Con: I can have a break can't I? I said 'surprisingly' because your comments don't often have much.... constructive input. lol
A: conversation is good, as long as people read around. Only then can they realise the shortcomings of such arguments.
Oh, and I removed any not-topic-related comments. But this comment itself assures this blog entry's place as the most commented.
it wasn't just your comment. my comment was the 11th comment, and no.2 is on 10, so you put it up to 12 comments. well and truly on top of the comments without any help. 😛 😀