Moral Vampires Are Unacceptable

11 December 2010

Normally I ignore the rubbish coming out of Hollywood that involves witches, goblins, ghosts, and vampires.  That whole passage in Philippians comes to mind:

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. (Philippians 4:8)

Given that neither Harry Potter nor the Twilight series seem to fit into any of those categories, I haven't paid them much mind beyond being generally aware that they are a "big deal" to the American public.  Imagine my surprise when I read an article on Foxnews.com entitled "Vampire Books Like 'Twilight' May be Altering Teen Minds".

"Surprise?", you may ask.

"What surprise is there about those types of books 'altering teen minds'?"

Allow me to share a few bits from the article:

"We don't know exactly how literature affects the brain, but we know that it does," said Maria Nikolajeva, a Cambridge University professor of literature. "Some new findings have identified spots in the brain that respond to literature and art."

This, in and of itself, is not surprising.  After all, Scripture tells us to "study to show yourself approved" (2 Timothy 2:15) and such study involves reading.  The work of the Holy Spirit on top of the simple act of reading Scripture is an unmatched "turbo boost" at changing our brains.  Paul makes a point along this line of thought in Romans 12:2...

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.

Ah.  I see you are still here, patiently waiting for the "surprise" part.  Well, here goes...

Scientists, authors and educators met in Cambridge, England, Sept. 3-5 for a conference organized by Nikolajeva to discuss how young-adult books and movies affect teenagers' minds.

Attendees at the conference included experts in neuroscience, psychology, art, literature and music, as well as writers such as Meg Rosoff, author of "How I Live Now" and other teen titles.  While teens might be turning the pages of "Twilight" for the plot and romance, other takeaways from the books may be having a lasting impact, too.

The series follows Bella, a teenage girl who falls in love with a much older vampire named Edward. Some critics have argued that Bella's passivity, and the story's abstinence-until-marriage message, are anti-feminist.

"If you look very, very clearly at what kind of values the 'Twilight' books propagate, these are very conservative values that do not in any way endorse independent thinking or personal development or a woman's position as an independent creature," Nikolajeva said. "That's quite depressing."

Excuse me? Did I get that right?

These folks are upset because the characters in this vampire story are, ahem, too conservative?

"Moral vampires" apparently are unacceptable on the vampire scene at Cambridge where the professor lives.  It appears that what Ms. Nikolajeva is looking for are completely depraved vampires, er, I mean "independent creatures".  Is she serious?

Oh, but wait... there's more...

Nikolajeva argued that authors have a moral responsibility to include some positivity and hope in works aimed at teens.

Are you kidding me?  Does anybody but me recognize the painful irony of her statement?

The professor over there is upset because the fictional characters in this fictional story about fictional vampires have positive, conservative morals (specifically abstinence until marriage) and yet she says the authors have a moral responsibility to "include some positivity and hope" in their works?

Really?

Although we might be tempted to laugh and ignore the absurdity of this situation, this is the type of moral relativism that exists in our world.  We must prepare ourselves and especially prepare our children to defend against it.  One particular passage of Scripture comes to mind in this situation.  I would hazard a guess that the professor is unfamiliar with it:

Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!  (Isaiah 5:20)

There is a consequence associated with taking a position of calling good evil and evil good.  I for one do not want to find out first-hand what that particular woe is.

Revelation 22:20 says this: ' He who testifies to these things says, "Yes, I am coming quickly." Amen. Come, Lord Jesus. '

Yes, come quickly, Lord, and put an end to all of this nonsense.  Please.

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