Fantasy and a Christian Worldview, Part 15


Evil. I’ve said before that one reason we need Christian fantasy is because leaving the genre to those who don’t know God let’s them define good and evil.

I found a good illustration of this in The Writer’s Guide to Fantasy Literature edited by Philip Martin (The Writers Book). In an essay by Gregory Maguire entitled “Considering Wicked” he discusses his book Wicked: “While readers will take away their own impressions, I hope their understanding will include the essential ideas about evil and character that, in the end, I finally did decide to pursue …”

He elaborates on what those ideas are:

One idea is that it is the nature of evil to be secret. If we could know its nature, we would not fear it. Perhaps evil is really best defined as: That whose nature we find it impossible to know…

The second thought about evil is this. We may have differing opinions about the nature of evil. Perhaps evil is a creation of God designed to help us be worthy of redemption or to prove us unworthy. Perhaps evil is an aberration of the nature of God, in a flawed universe in which God is not as all-powerful as we had once hoped. Perhaps the universe is God-less, and so evil is an attribute of human behavior alone. Perhaps evil is merely a human interpretation that is a natural part of our biological bent.

But I think it is always true, in every instance we can name, that the evil act as perpetrated by a human being is the act of a human being who is filled with self-hatred.

Anyone else see a lack of Biblical perspective in all of that? Is it any wonder that fantasy written by such a person often fails to align with truth?

Published in: on June 5, 2006 at 1:07 pm  Comments (9)  
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