Monday, June 15, 2009

Angels and Demons by Dan Brown

Victoria Vetra: "Religion is like language or dress. We gravitate toward the practices with which we were raised. In the end, though we are all proclaiming the same thing. That life has meaning. That we are grateful for that created us."
Robert Langdon: "So you’re saying that whether you are a Christian or a Muslim simply depends on where you were born?"

Vittoria Vetra: "Isn’t it obvious? Look at the diffusion of religion around the globe."

Robert Langdon: "So faith is random?"

Vittoria Vetra: "Hardly. Faith is universal. Our specific methods for understanding it are arbitrary. Some of us pray to Jesus, some us go to Mecca, some of us study subatomic particles. In the end we are all just searching for truth, that which is greater than ourselves."

This is an excerpt from the book which I find true. In the book, Victoria is a scientist and Robert is a Historian. Robert Langdon is the main character ( he reminds me of Indiana Jones!!). This novel of Dan Brown is intriguing to the max as he uses verifiable places and historic events. This makes the story one of a kind. It places the reader in the fine lines between fiction and reality. It breads a vague impression of ‘what if’ this is really true? ‘What if’ this can really happen in the future? What better story is there than one that allows the mind to think and wonder.

The story was about the age old conflict between science and religion. It started with a death of a scientist (which turned out to be a priest too) who happen to discover the antimatter. The death also leads to stolen antimatter big enough to annihilate an entire city. The head director of the scientific company contacted Robert Langdon, a professor of religious iconology at Harvard. Why a professor and not the police? The dead scientist was also branded on his chest the word “Illuminati” which falls under the specialty of the professor and at the same time, the director needs to keep the death at low profile due to the technology involved. Hence, started Robert Langdon’s adventure to the search of the stolen antimatter. He met Victoria Vetra, the adopted daughter of the murdered scientist and together they tried to solve the mystery behind the Illuminati. Their search led them to Rome and the Vatican City where an enclave is currently in progress. From here on was an action pact adventure that includes kidnapping of 4 cardinals, the heinous death of these cardinals on the hands of the Illuminati assassin, the controversy over the untimely death of the Pope, the involvement of the Swiss Guards, the death of the director scientist, the antimatter being located somewhere in the Vatican city ready to explode at 12 midnight and all these while the world is watching. This explosion will evaporate the whole Vatican City together with all the cardinals congregated to elect a new Pope. I especially liked the speech of the camerlengo. How did it ended? Did the anti matter exploded? Were they able to catch the assassin? Who won? Was it the Illuminati or the church? The anti matter did explode. The assassin was stopped. ... and the mastermind revealed (not to the world though). The rest of the story I leave to you guys to read.

The lesson? Why must we be thorn between science and faith? Don’t they come hand in hand? I do admit when we began to study the big bang theory in school, I was confused for a while. I learned very early in life that God has created everything. He made Adam and Eve. But then, at school they were telling me that man came from apes. Did that changed the perception of my faith? No. A lot of things can be explained now through science, but these answers breads new questions. And while waiting for answers, we rely on our faith, on our God, to someday reveal it to us. Let science be the child, curious and hungry for knowledge. Let God be the parents, providing tools and guidance for the child to grow and learn from its mistakes.

Let me end this with another excerpt from the book:

"Mr. Langdon all questions were once spiritual. Since the beginning of time, spirituality and religion have been called on to fill in the gaps that science did not understand. The rising and setting of the sun was once attributed to Helios and a flaming chariot. Earthquakes and tidal waves were the wrath of Poseidon. Science has now proven those gods to be false idols. Soon all gods will be proven to be false idols. Science has now provided answers to almost every question man can ask. There are only a few questions left and they are the esoteric ones. Where do we come from? What are we doing here? What is the meaning of life and the universe?"


Lawstude said...

very well said. i have not yet watched this one but my sister does and she said it is tamer than Da Vinci Code. maybe that is the reason why there ain't too much negative publicity on this one compared to the Da Vinci.

EM said...

Thanks Lawstude! I haven't watch the movie too. I read the book and watched the discovery episode. I agree, as soon as I finished this book, I went to read the Da Vinci Code and that second book (it's actually the 2nd adventure of Robert Langdon)is indeed very very controvertial. I will post that soon too. I'm on Dan Brown marathon these days. I've finished The Da Vinci Code and now on Deception Point. All Dan Browns masterpieces.

thanks for sharing your thoughts!!!

the donG said...

nice to know you're back! tagal mong nawala. i miss this one. havent watch the movie before it either and not had the chance to read the book either. boring ko talaga. hehehe...

EM said...

hehe Dong! i would not say you're boring at all with all the great photographies and travel you're doing. Yup, been distracted for a while but I promise myself to post as aften as I can. The mind is willing but the body reluctant. Anyway, it's good to see you again! thanks for dropping by!


I watched the film last month and I can honestly say that Ive enjoyed it. My friends who have read the book said some scenarios have been changed but it didnt bother me coz I havent read the book anyway. LOL!

EM said...

Wow Jasper, you made me curious as to what scene was changed. I hope I can watch the movie soon. I like Tom Hanks and I believe you that the movie is worth seeing.

thanks for passing by!

Anonymous said...

Who are the angels and who are the demons? And why on this earth, the ones we think who are on our side, most of the time behave like warriors from hell? Pero bilang na ang mga araw nila dahil lilipulin sila nina Gabriel, Michael and Raphael. But I wonder if our days are like the angelic days that these angels live.

I've read the book but I forgot about the details except the costume of the Swiss Guards. After reading this, naging predictable na saken ang mga plot ni Dan Brown pati yung storytelling style nya. Pero binasa ko pa rin pati yung Deception Point. Na-entertain naman ako haha. When The Da Vinci Code the movie created a stir, isa lang ang naisip ko, hindi isang work of fiction ang gigiba sa faith ko.

And may I end this comment with v-earth's (my advisory class ^i^) favorite prayer:

Angel of God,
my guardian dear,
to whom God's love commits me here,
ever this day,
be at my side
to light and guard,
to rule and guide.