revered authors

Rowland, Jennifer A B jennifer.rowland at ic.ac.uk
Mon Mar 18 06:32:50 EST 2002


Caleb wrote:
> The trouble is, this is the only Christianity we see in the books - there
is 
> not the real Christianity that is a personal relationship with a loving 
> and holy God who died and came back to life to offer forgiveness and
eternal 
> life to all who believe. The "church" is attacked as being oppresive, and 
> rightly so, but this is because it is a twisted christianity. I find it
very sad as a
> Christian that this seems to be the only christianity that 
> Philip Pullman seems to have experienced, as far as I can see from the 
> worldview he so kindly bludgeons us over the head with in the books 
> (especially later on in the trilogy).
> 
> If (hopefully when) I become a professional author, I would love to write
an epic 
> that even comes close to "His Dark Materials" in quality, but with a 
> Christian worldview (I can but dream!).
> 
> Excellent books, a pity that Philip Pullman's views are unbalanced.

I feel that Pullman is entitled to express his views in his own world! - As
entitled as you would certainly be to write books that reflect your own
world view. Why should he put things in about a loving and holy god, when he
doesn't believe in one and does not find christianity good, to make you feel
that he is "balanced"? Do you feel that Lewis should have put positive views
of atheism in Narnia so that that was "balanced"? There are a lot of fantasy
authors who have good deities in their works- mostly not the christian god,
but gods who care for their worlds. I found a nasty one, in a book where the
religious people are the bad guys, to be a pleasant change. 
Lyra's world isn't our world- even Will's world isn't our world- and though
they partly come out of Pullman's view of religion, (which seems to be the
same sort that many people have experienced) they are not really to do with
your experience of religion in our world. If you want to work for true
Christianity in our world, good, but nobody else has to agree with you.
This seems to have come out as an attack on Caleb, and I apologise. I think
I've read a few too many right-wing religious criticisms of books that do
not fit in with a very narrow viewpoint recently and am reacting towards
Caleb's polite *and reasonable* post as if it was one of those. The trouble
is on trying to reword it, it kept not meaning what I want it to. I *do*
feel that Pullman was right to make his world as he saw it and had no
obligation to be nice about the god (who he created, after all).
Jennifer

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