Taken from Uplook.Org
WHERE IS THE GOLDEN COMPASS POINTING?
Written by Jabe Nicholson Former school teacher and now best-selling children’s author Philip Pullman is on a mission. Although better known in Britain where his books have sold in the millions, Pullman and his ideas have come to America’s notice due to an upcoming movie, The Golden Compass, set for release in December. The Golden Compass (titled Northern Lights in the UK) is the first of Pullman’s acclaimed His Dark Materials trilogy, which, reports BBC News (Sunday, Oct 16, 2005), “tells of a battle against the church and a fight to overthrow God.”
The U.S. Catholic League says The Golden Compass is “the least offensive of the three books” and warns that The Subtle Knife is “more overt in its hatred of Catholicism” and The Amber Spyglass “even more blatant.” I should say so—The Amber Spyglass recounts the death of God! The books are published by the well-known Scholastic Books, and made available for sale through the public school system.
Pullman and the movie’s director Chris Weitz have made clear they have an agenda. Weitz described himself on one fan site as “a lapsed Catholic crypto-Buddhist,” writes the LA Times. Any idea why he’d be interested in such a series?
Turns out that Pullman hates the Narnia series by C.S. Lewis and wants to provide an alternative. He has said that the Narnia books contain “a peevish blend of racist, misogynistic and reactionary prejudice.” Robert McCrum in the Observer writes that Pullman “has found himself enthusiastically adopted as a myth-maker for ‘the children of a faithless age.’”
Laura Miller, in a November 16, 2007 article entitled Far From Narnia comments in New Yorker magazine (not known for its conservative views): “He is one of England’s most outspoken atheists. In the trilogy, a young girl, Lyra Belacqua, becomes enmeshed in an epic struggle against a nefarious Church known as the Magisterium; another character, an ex-nun turned particle physicist named Mary Malone, describes Christianity as “a very powerful and convincing mistake.” Pullman once told an interviewer that “every single religion that has a monotheistic god ends up by persecuting other people and killing them because they don’t accept him.”
On the occasion of Pullman winning the prestigious Whitbread Book of the Year prize for The Amber Spyglass, columnist Peter Hitchens wrote a column titled “This is the most dangerous author in Britain” (The Mail, Sunday, Jan 27, 2002, p. 63) He dubbed Pullman “the anti-Lewis, the one the atheists would have been praying for, if atheists prayed.” In it Hitchens made the following observations: “The atheists have driven God out of the classroom and off the TV and the radio, and done a pretty good job of expelling him from the churches as well. But one stubborn and important pocket of Christianity survives, in the Narnia stories of C.S. Lewis. Now here comes an opportunity to dethrone him and supplant his books with others which proclaim the death of God to the young.”
Later in the article, Hitchens gives the following statement by Pullman given at an Oxford literary conference in August 2000: “We’re used to the Kingdom of Heaven; but you can tell from the general thrust of the book that I’m of the devil’s party, like Milton. And I think it’s time we thought about a republic of Heaven instead of the Kingdom of Heaven. The King is dead. That’s to say I believe the King is dead. I’m an atheist. But we need Heaven nonetheless, we need all the things that Heaven meant, we need joy, we need a sense of meaning and purpose in our lives, we need a connection with the universe, we need all the things the Kingdom of Heaven used to promise us but failed to deliver.”
Hitchens observes: “Children instinctively like Lewis’s enthralling stories and often do not even notice their religious message, though it frequently goes deep into their minds and emerges later. How infuriating this is for liberal but literate parents, the sort of people who…want all the advantages of a Christian culture without the tiresome bother of having to worship a God they think they are too smart to believe in…” Now they have found an alternative
It can be quite ironic. Atheists ridicule christians for believing in something (supposedly) they can’t prove exists, and then do their level best to prove God doesn’t. Why prove something doesn’t exists, when it doesn’t exist?