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Fr. Barron comments on "The Book of Eli" (SPOILERS)
Hi Father Barron. I waited with great anticipation for the "Book of Eli" to be released. Because, as you mentioned, of the success of "Passion of the Christ", I was thinking that maybe Hollywood has finally come around to realizing that there are a lot of Christians out here, and we want to see more movies that are religiously themed. "Eli" had my interest all the way through until the end, when I felt completely let down. After this journey through the wasteland, after all the violence, after seemingly being guided by something greater than himself to follow through on his mission, he gets to Alcatraz, recites the whole Bible to Malcolm Mcdowell's character, they print it up, and what happens; Mcdowell's character simply places the book on the shelf with some other religious books, and that's it. The relativism that you speak of in your video seemed to me to disappear in this movie, and then reappears, albeit subtly, at the very end. The suggestion to me is that religion is merely a human construct, and there all alike. Sorry, to me the ending was "typical Hollywood"!
9/1/2011 12:49:56 PM
"The only reason we have access to Plato's Republic or Aristotle's Ethics or the Iliad and the Odyssey or any work of classical literature is that ... faithful monks ... preserved these texts."
This makes a good story, and there is a degree of truth to it, but it severely overplays the role of the Latin West in the preservation of Classical literature.
If you had chosen Latin authors--Vergil, say, or Tacitus—the story would be essentially true. But much of classical civilization, and in particular the exclusively Greek works you list were NOT preserved by Benedictine monasteries off Ireland or whatever. They were preserved in the Greek East. Monasteries played an essential part, but the East didn't fall in the same way the West fell. Even at its lowest point--say, when illiterate Latin Crusaders captured and looted Constantinople in 1204--it was never so fallen from civilization that authors like Homer disappeared from private collections.
Taking Plato as an example, far from being preserved by the Church, his works had virtually vanished from the west until Latin translations from <i>Arabic</i> started to profuse from Spain in the 12th century, and not fully known until Greek scholars brought Greek texts to the west in the 15th century.
Anyway, you basic point is so good that it's a shame to see you exaggerate it like this.
10/25/2011 9:30:08 PM
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Answering the Skeptics
Book of Eli
Fr. Robert Barron
Of Gods and Men
Pope John Paul
To Rome With Love
Tree of Life
Word From Rome
Word On Fire
The Limits of Tolerance: A commentary by Fr. Barron
Modernity and Morality: A commentary by Fr. Barron
Pope Francis and The Religious Sense: A commentary by Fr. Barron
Pier Giorgio Frassati: A commentary by Fr. Barron
Gay Marriage and the Breakdown of Moral Argument: A commentary by Fr. Barron
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