Sunday, May 14, 2006

Da Vinci Code: Hype vs Ban

A new movie has come out: The Da Vinci Code. This is based on a book by the same name. The name makes me think of scientific theories; in particular, the mathematics of cryptography. This is because Lenonardo Da Vinci was both an artist and and a scientist, having tried to design a flying machine. Indeed, code has something to do with it, but it also concerns Jesus Christ. Huh?? It seems that there is a code that tells something about who Jesus was. Both the book and the movie explain this.

Should I see the movie? There has been so much media hype about both the book and the movie that my initial answer was no. Then I found that several entities were banning the movie, telling people not to show it and forbidding its showing. These include the Catholic Church, Jordan, the Faeroe Islands, and possibly the Philippines. That changed my feeling about the movie. Any book or movie that is banned somewhere, especially for sexual or religious reasons, is a book worth reading or a movie worth seeing, just simply to defy the ban. So should I see it?

I heard it is a book that offers an alternate story of Jesus. It says that Jesus married Mary Magdalene, and that he had children, who had children, forming a long line of genealogy into today, and that people who are descended from Jesus keep it a secret, supposedly through something called the Da Vinci Code. To me the idea of Jesus marrying and having children is more believable than that he was the son of some deity such as God or Jehovah. Now it seems like a defiance of the Christian religion, making it even more worthy to see.

Then I found out it is all probably fiction. In truth we will never know the true story of Jesus, whether he married Mary Magdalene, had children, caused "miracles" to happen, was crucified, or even if he existed to begin with! The Christian religion makes a big, BIG, infinitely big unwarranted assumption when they say that Jesus was the son of God or was God. And I find that likewise, and unfortunately, the movie makes unwarranted assumptions as well, including his marriage and children.

Since the movie is fiction, based maybe loosely on some facts, I did not give it much credence or thought. Indeed, the hypermedia probably have really blown this movie out of proportion. It is media hype versus religious dogmatism. In my view, religious dogmatism is worse, so I will want to see the movie. But I will regard it as fun, not as a witness to a documentary.


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