Thursday, January 11, 2007

The Need for Mystery

If you’ve read the last two entries you know the year did not exactly end well or start well for me, but that’s behind me now. I have my new computer back in my possession and in more ways than one I am back in business. Now that I no longer have to contend with the local library’s filters which blocked out many of your blogs and indeed would not let me read Charlie Brown’s bio on the Peanuts website, I can now make a full return to Outer Blogness.

Perhaps the one benefit of my computer being down is that I caught up with several movies I intended to watch along with doing some reading. One of the books reminded me of one particular problem I’ve always had when trying to read some Creation scientist trying to debunk Evolution (which by the way says nothing about the existence or non-existence of God.) Typically they start off with the Big Bang which is a completely different theory. Before I get too far off track here, let me just say the person was defining words to suit him. That is not important. The book was written by a Christian pastor for an obviously Christian audience. I was hoping for a slightly better understanding of Christian theology and came away from the book knowing about as much as I did before I picked it up.

But I’ll start getting to the point in this entry with another book I read over my unplanned vacation – The DaVinci code. Perhaps because history is one of my points of contention with the Brethren in Salt Lake, I find it annoying when someone misrepresents religious history particularly. While I’m not exactly sure it was Dan Brown’s intent to imply that Goddess worship as Neo-Pagans and Wiccans practice today existed before the religions of Wicca and Neo-Paganism came to be, I have seen no source where he denies this is the case. Most of the ancient Romans were hard polytheists, Mister Brown, not Goddess worshippers. Goddesses (note the plural) were found in their worship, but despite the presence of two Iberian deities, Magna Mater and Magna Pater (both of which can be found in the Dictionary of Roman Religion), they were not modern Neo-Pagans.

But despite my distaste for religions and people being dishonest about religious history particularly aside, it doesn’t matter if the history is true or not as he is trying to convey something else with the book and the themes of the quest and even the conspiracy and the fact that the book itself is a mystery all tie in to the point I am trying to make.

Whether it’s the Grail, Trinity, or deciding we should try to feel the force for those who think they’re Jedi, we all seem to need mysteries in our lives. If we don’t have sufficient mystery or wonder, we’re more than certainly willing to create it and this is in part what I think the UFO craze is all about.

Is it because we’re trying to recapture the wonder we felt as children when so many more things were a new experiences for us? (Of course people who are older than I am can answer this question more readily.) I don’t think so. It may be that why mystery is necessary is itself a mystery, but I think it’s more likely that we need to experience awe and wonder from time to time. It gets harder when we learn things and people will almost always react in a certain way and if we can’t find wonder in what is here anymore, we’ll readily fantasize about it. While one could easily say this is a bad thing, I would think otherwise, for while art provides us a mirror – certain arts, especially those where a story must be told invoke the imagination, helping us to discover more important truths as our minds wonder through the objects of our imaginations.


At Thu Jan 11, 10:26:00 PM 2007 , Blogger Just one of many said...

I miss the wonder of childhood. Where anything was possible...thanks for the reminder to enjoy the mysteries of life!!


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