Well it has been a few months since I’ve written a post, but I finally have a moment to sit down and write (and it does not have to be related to school!)
Lately I have really been thinking about this idea that I like to call “Christian-alysing.” This is the when Christians analyse things around them with “bible glasses,” or where everything has to some way relate to the bible. I, myself, know that I have analysed things (movies, music, literature, etc.) in this way. However, I think that by doing this we have missed the point. Sometimes we need to take these stories for what they are and not try to fit them into our bible. Let me explain what I mean by this.
This is not the first time that I have thought about this topic of “Christian-alysing,” what really spurred this thought process was when I was told (many a year ago) that C.S. Lewis did not write The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe as an allegory of the story of Christ. Yet, this puzzled me since 1) C. S. Lewis was a Christian and 2) Aslan seemed to fit the role of Jesus pretty well. Nevertheless, Lewis wrote on this subject to explain that his work was not allegorical in nature, rather, “at first there wasn’t anything Christian about them [the images that began the “Chronicles of Narnia”]; that element pushed itself in of its own accord.” Elements of Christianity obviously made their way into Lewis’ works, there is really no surprise in this because he was a Christian and that mindset seeped into all he did. At the same time this does not imply that it is an allegory. This idea he addresses by saying:
If Aslan represented the immaterial Deity in the same way in which Giant Despair [a character in The Pilgrim’s Progress] represents despair, he would be an allegorical figure. In reality however he is an invention giving an imaginary answer to the question, ‘What might Christ become like, if there really were a world like Narnia and He chose to be incarnate and die and rise again in that world as He actually has done in ours?’ This is not allegory at all.
There is no denying that there are certain aspects of Christianity presented in the “Chronicles of Narnia” (specifically The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe). In the same breath, we cannot use this story as a replacement for the true one. Our faith should not be determined by what we see as “Christ” figures (or God figures for that matter) because they simply are not Him. They are characters that carry some attributes of Him, but they are not perfect representations. They are not Him.
Why is it so important to some of us to find a Christian message? (That is for you to answer yourself.) For myself, when I watch something and I feel like I see a “hidden” Christian message I try to take a step back and think about it. Is it really a pure Christian message? I mean there are lots of religions that preach a similar message, (peace, love, kindness, self-control, generosity, etc.) But… Jesus taught us differently. He said “… love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you and pray for those who mistreat you.” (Luke 6:27-28) Jesus as the son of God, who died and then was resurrected from the dead, is what sets Christianity apart from other religions. He is inspiring! Truly inspiring! So there is no wonder why there are books and movies (even some songs) that possess a character with some of the attributes of Jesus.
I think when it all comes down to it, I do not want my personal perceptions of Jesus and God left to others’ depictions, representations, or interpretations of who They are. The only way to know Them is to be with Them. As inspiring as Jesus is, He is the only one. No one can portray Him better than He Himself. So I’ll try to let literature be literature and movies, movies. Learning from them in the simplest way, but knowing Him by other means. Taking the “bible glasses” off.