Re: [mythsoc] Digest Number 1098
----- Original Message -----
From: Steve Schaper
Sent: Saturday, January 04, 2003 11:58 PM
Subject: Re: [mythsoc] Digest Number 1098
>Just read Moody's absurd review. What he thinks is exclusively pagan
Norse is also Christian though he and his source don't seem to realize
this (and his source is a medieval historian who apparently isn't
exactly up to standard.
>Moody's final line gives it all away. He so hates Christians that the
thought that Christians might like LoTR, and that Tolkien's Catholicism
so thoroughly informed his imagination might be a turn-off to him and
his fellow travellers.
This isn't how I read Moody's review at all. IMHO, it's well balanced, with views from people on both sides of the debate (if that's what it is). I totally disagreed with Steven Morillo's quote about Frodo's words in "The Grey Havens" being solely pagan and incompatible with Christian theology, but I'm glad I was informed that there's someone saying that. It's extreme, but some of the quotes from people on the "other side" go too far, also (IMHO).
Moody's final line is in response to a quote from Bradley Birzer, the author of one of the Catholic books on Tolkien, who says, "I think the beauty of Tolkien is that he's not explicitly Christian. I think I would be turned off if we had Jesus running around the story." And the final line is, "The question is whether this could be a turn-off to everyone else," which I think follows pretty well from Birzer's statement. And as a Christian, a Catholic, and a Franciscan, I have to say I'd be turned off by some of the statements Birzer is referring to (and at the time I read LotR, when I was in high school and still searching for who I would be, they probably would have kept me away from the book which, it turned out, was the perfect vehicle to prepare me to listen to a more explicitly Christian message later on). I think it's a valid question, and IMHO Moody doesn't seem to be trying to give a definitive answer.
I don't see anything in the review that would make me think Moody "hates Christians," but this is the first piece of his I've ever read, IIRC. So maybe he has a history of anti-Christian statements that I'm unaware of, but I certainly don't get it from this.
Here's the URL for those who missed it when David first posted it:
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