Monday, January 3, 2011

Apocalypse Dawn

Apocalypse Dawn, written by Mel Odom is based on the Left Behind Series. I remember the first time I encountered Tim LaHaye's left behind was when I bought an audio book on a night drive up the Sunshine Coast. I'd listened to a Marianne Williamson audiobook discussion of the Course in Miracles on that same trip.

Left Behind was captivating. As a science fiction fan I'd likely have listened to the whole series as I read all of Asimov's Trilogy. I didn't despite the characterization and adventure and gripping story line. The reason was, I think, that I knew these people believed these events true and my own ability to be open minded fell fall short of such obvious 'nonsense'. Interestingly I'd read the scientologist, Hubbards' science fiction without at all being bothered by his own arcane ideology.

The trouble with the Left Behind series and especially Apocalypse Dawn is that it is so alien. The very idea of a 'miracle' or a God interested in human affairs or biblical prophecy is more inconceivable than little green men with ray guns. Now I couldn't help but wonder as I read the book how I, a Christian, and a spiritual person to my mind and certainly to my mind, an open minded person, could much easier accept even the thinking of Stephen King over Tim LeHaye. Yet Mel Odom wasn't really that far fetched.

Somewhere along the line I'd been brain washed or programmed to accept little green men and H.G. Wells War of the World over the equally science fiction like tales of the biblical book, Revelations. That's where a lot of thinking of the series derives. It's certainly ahead of Gangsta Rap on the evolutionary scale but I'd not be as disturbed by those so often offensive lyrics as I was by the book Apocalypse Dawn. Because it was so alien I concluded it probably was closer to God than much of the fiction I read. G-d is spoke of with 'awe' because the infinite to us the finite can only be at first alien. Then to take the leap of faith to believe Sigourney Weaver's Alien loves me not as food or a place to lay it's eggs but rather as a companion, well frankly, it's easier to read about little green men.

The interesting aspect of the book is it deals with the rapture and naturally "Left Behind" Americans think the disappearance of the good people among them is the product of a weapon of mass destruction and this naturally sets off every trigger happy world leader. A fascinating hypothesis though. I didn't consider it seriously I think when I first listened to it years back but this time, with my mother dead, and a couple of the finest of my older mentors dead, and me older, and considering death more, the whole idea that the 'good die young' and I'm still around struck a different cord. Call it humility. That's an aspect of the book. The heroes are humble people and so very unlike the daily fare of hollywood, in contrast. That's interesting too because I remember my mother's pride only showing up in a gladiola competition but on the bigger day to day things she'd just say she was just doing what a good person ought to do.

Apocalypse Dawn was an unsettling read. Let's leave it at that. Something to beware of. The kind of book that would easily be banned.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

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