I received an email with a link to a Snopes.com article that states The Golden Compass, is a movie based on the first book of the His Dark Materials series by Philip Pullman that has anti-religious themes.
I read other related articles and I have heard some of the controversy and I just want to scream. Supposedly Philip Pullman wants to convince children to turn away from God with his books. The Catholic League has denounced The Golden Compass because of the anti-god themes. What upsets me is I know that people will listen to the media and these groups and actually scorn these books, forbid their children to read them and never know for themselves that these books are quality literature. This is madness! These books are fantastic, completely fascinating and enchanting. Is it too much to just read books to enjoy them and not take them literally? It’s fantasy for crying out loud.
What actually happened to making up our own minds based on our own thoughts and not the collective thoughts of closed mindedness? Instead of immediately depriving yourself and your kids of these books, I ask that you borrow the book from a library and read it with an open mind. Maybe you’ll find it offensive and decide that your kids should not read it but maybe you’ll find it wonderful and just interesting literature. But won’t you feel better knowing that you made an informed decision and you didn’t let the media and other groups form your opinions for you?
Philip Pullman is a confessed atheist but this is what he states on his website:
‘As a passionate believer in the democracy of reading, I don't think it's the task of the author of a book to tell the reader what it means. The meaning of a story emerges in the meeting between the words on the page and the thoughts in the reader's mind. So when people ask me what I meant by this story, or what was the message I was trying to convey in that one, I have to explain that I'm not going to explain. Anyway, I'm not in the message business; I'm in the “Once upon a time” business.’
I am not here to argue atheism versus religion and which one is right or wrong. I just want you to read a few good books and not think of the baggage associated with them. Just read them to escape from this world and step into the life of a little girl who embarks on fascinating adventures. Maybe we just need to stop being adults for a little while and just get lost in a make believe world.