God’s answer to his questioners, or what it would be if they could see the movie, seems to be: don’t bother me, can’t you see I’m still recovering from creating the world? And who are you anyway? Equipped with this generous response we may become – I became – less irritated by the large-scale drivel and more sympathetic to the tiny central characters of the film’s story, stuck with such a God and effectively abandoned by their creator and their director alike.
There are two ways through life: the way of nature and the way of grace. You have to choose which one you'll follow. Grace doesn't try to please itself. Accepts being slighted, forgotten, disliked. Accepts insults and injuries. Nature only wants to please itself. Get others to please it too. Likes to lord it over them. To have its own way. It finds reasons to be unhappy when all the world is shining around it. And love is smiling through all things. The nuns taught us that no one who loves the way of grace ever comes to a bad end.
Most critics have noted the film’s early-on pronouncement of an either/or choice down life’s path: “There are two ways through life: the way of nature and the way of grace. You have to choose which one you’ll follow.” The father (the masculine force, disciplinarian, the god of justice) is pit in distinction to the mother (the feminine force, compassionate, the god of mercy). Marketers have exploited this dualism, and a promotional website for the film carries the title: twowaysthroughlife.com. Comments on the film (by critics and in the comment sections of major media outlets) typically ape this dualistic proclamation.
[...] the higher must not be allowed to grow out of the lower, must not be allowed to have grown at all.... Moral: everything of the first rank must be causa sui. [the cause of itself.] Origin in something else counts as an objection, as casting a doubt on value. All supreme values are of the first rank, all the supreme concepts - that which is, the unconditioned, the good, the true, the perfect - all that cannot have become, must therefore be causa sui.
New atheism is really more about a belief about believers than a conviction about the non-existence of God. “If you still believe in God you are either crazy or stupid.” It’s a binary proposition. And this proposition is such a bedrock principle of this new movement (not all atheism mind you) that to suggest any other possibility or perspective is a threat.
Tee hee! It's time for a Nietzsche quote!
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