Saturday, October 1, 2011

Repost: Breaking The Da Vinci Code

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From time to time I peruse the documentary section of my local library. Sometimes I find very interesting things. This week I took out one called Breaking The DaVinci Code. Unfortunately I didn’t read the small print that said “Grizzly Adams Family Entertainment.”

I read The DaVinci Code when it came out. I wasn’t impressed. I thought the first Robert Langdon book Angels And Demons was much more interesting and better written. To be honest I found the non-fiction book Holy Blood, Holy Grail to be much more fascinating.

I wanted to take the Hollywood movie version out of the library but the VPL has 20 copies and there are currently 250 holds. At that rate I should get it some time in 2008.


To get back to Breaking The DaVinci Code

The film is a bunch of Christian scholars (each of whom has a DaVinci Code book out) talking about the “real facts.” The video shows science types doing work and using scientific instruments but what they’re supposedly doing is never talked about.

I have no idea if Mary and Jesus were married. I wasn’t there and I don’t know anyone who was. Let’s face it, all the writing we have from that time is suspect. A lot of stuff was burned during the Dark Ages. Stuff that didn’t fit with Church doctrine was probably destroyed. It was done many times, with the Celts, with the Inka etc. Whole histories destroyed because it didn’t fit in with the conquerors worldview.

Consider this, Jesus was a 32 year old Jewish man. It would have been considered very odd if he wasn’t married. I’m just saying.

Leaving aside if you believe or not, there are some really stupid things in this video:

One guy said that there is no word for “goddess” in the Hebrew language. My online Hebrew/English dictionary begs to differ:

(ש"ע) אלה, אלילה; אישה יפהפיה (סלנג)

I have no idea how to pronounce it but I guess it exists.

The argument that the Priory of Scion never existed before the Mid-20th Century is that it is not mentioned until some pretender to the French throne started writing about it and planting evidence (through unnamed henchmen.)

The argument against Sir Isaac Newton being a Grand Master of the Priory is that he never mentioned being part of a secret society in any of the hundreds of papers found after his death.

What part of Secret Society are these people not getting?

One “mystery” is the coded messages in DaVinci’s “Last Supper.” The argument of Dan Brown’s book is that the apostle at Jesus’ right hand is not John but Mary. I look at the picture and it looks like a woman to me. Breaking The DaVinci Code says that the artist left sketches where he labelled each person and the figure in question is labelled as John. An art historian also says that John looks like a woman because he was the youngest of the apostles (too young to grow facial hair) and the style DaVinci used to depict him is a common way to depict young men.

They didn’t show any other paintings of young men by DaVinci to prove the point. I wonder why. Are there no other depictions of young men? Or do the ones that exist not agree with their theory?

The overall argument is that there are no coded messages in DaVinci because they cannot be recognized as codes.

Again… what part of secret are these people not getting?

It’s quite reasonable to think that DaVinci put coded messages meant to be read by only a few people in the know in his work. Labelling the figure as Mary would have gotten DaVinci burned at the stake. Now I didn’t know him, but I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t have liked that. Besides, the painting was a commission and he had to paint what the patron expected.

Anyway, these scholars spent 60 minutes repeating how shoddy Dan Brown’s research was and how many “factual” mistakes he made. They didn’t present much scholarly evidence and what was presented was decidedly biased.

I don’t know the answers. Maybe we need to get DNA from the Shroud of Turin (if it’s real) and find out. Then again, maybe it doesn’t really matter if the “truth” is proven or not. That’s what faith is all about isn’t it?

Judgement: Don’t waste your time. Even if you are a Christian this isn’t a very in depth or scholarly work. I’m sure there is better information out there.

Reposts are posts written for previous journals or other places online that no longer exist.

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