Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Culture of Fantasy 3

I remember comprehending what I read very early. There was a voice inside my head that seemed to be telling me the story and I followed it. When I lost the voice, I stopped and retraced where it stopped and picked it back up. I can’t prove it, but TV silences that voice. Its flickering array of pixels, colors, sounds, and dynamic movement, and rapid scene changes damages that ability to comprehend reading- that is my theory. When children see those images over and over, it does not allow the development of the mind. I believe this so much that we have limited TV watching in our home. We do not have cable. And I believe we are better off without it.
The latest advent of reality TV is the most sinister production yet. Reality TV? 20 women allowing one man to love them while he eliminates them 1 by 1? TV cameras on a remote island editing a machiavellian deceit to shame the Lord of the Flies? What about the show where players eat sheep intestines to earn money? Reality? I hate these shows. Not because they are lacking in creativity or excellence, but are so devoid of true values.
I know the argument. I am lumping together thousands of ordinary people who are actors, writer, producers and accusing them of a mass conspiracy. No, I am saying that somehow they are being used as pawns of the Prince of this World. Satan has orchestrated this culture of fantasy with all the expertise of an artist!
Does this mean I want to rid the world of TV? No Do I let my children watch? Yes
But we plan what to watch. We turn it off if it is not planned to do so. We pick and choose. We control it. I also do not have cable- I would love to watch ESPN and Fox News and Biography and Discovery- but I have limited time and the cost is not worth it. I really have not missed cable and when I do get to see it, it is a treat.
I hope as we watch, our world-view picks up the inconsistencies. A quick example: CSI is a great show- well made- etc. However, there is a subtle message there. The only “truth” is scientific evidence. Eyewitness testimony is unreliable. Is this a problem? It is a huge problem. If historical evidence becomes a matter of perception, then the foundations of the credibility of our faith is weakened.
I asked a student one day about Christ and he said he doubted that Jesus really lived, and that it was just a story. I countered and asked if he believed the Abraham Lincoln lived.
He answered, “I cannot know for sure. I guess they can dig him up and do a DNA test, but outside of that you can’t know.” CSI supplements this view.
I am not saying to boycott CSI. Watch it, enjoy the quality; rejoice in the truths that the show portrays (all truth is God’s truth)- but be careful, and keep God’s word as the filter. Don’t disengage the mind…stay alert!
Please do not let TV shape your world-view. If you become its servant- it will tell you how to think, speak, live, evaluate, and vote. And that is a scary thought.

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