What's up with the Da Vinci Code?


#1

My sister-in-law, who often likes to antagonize me, recently found out I am converting to Catholicism. She is a protestant, who use to go to a tabernacle church, but quit when her atheist boyfriend didn’t like it. Then they moved in together. I say these things because after finding out I was converting she antagonistically asked if I had read the Da Vinci Code. I said no, and she stood there with a stunned look on her face. She then suggested I read it, she had already. I am anticipating the next questions she will inevitably ask, and want to know, WHAT"S UP WITH THE DA VINCI CODE? What should I know about it, and how would I answer the questions she might ask. HELP!!!


#2

Catholic Answers’ Cracking the Da Vinci Code


#3

I have not bothered to read the Da Vinci Code. I think I was put off because a “liberal” friend of mine (school teacher librarian) was talking about it to me and claimed that it was true and that she knew a Jesuit who had confirmed that it was true. My parish priest, who is a Scripture scholar, read the book and gave his opinion - it is a piece of fiction. That is a very good summary of the Da Vinci Code.

From what I have gleaned about the Da Vinci code it contains a lot of historical as well as factual errors. The source material that the author has used is somewhat suspect. One of his sources was a book titled “In Search of the Holy Grail” or something along those lines. He also used Gnostic sources such as the Gospel of Thomas and he made some fantastic and very inaccurate claims such as Jesus was married to Mary of Magdala. That one is a favourite of the liberals within the Church (Catholic and wider) and it was a position put forward by the heretic Barbara Thiering in her books about Jesus (also totally inaccurate in historical fact plus she also relied upon the same Gnostic sources for her material).

The other area of contention about the Da Vinci Code is what the author wrote about the movement known as Opus Dei. From what I have read about this book, he totally demonized the Opus Dei with stories that are fiction and not fact. I am not a member of Opus Dei, but I do know quite a few from my parish, including my doctor.

So I would tell her that it was a nice piece of fiction not based upon historical fact.

MaggieOH


#4

Julie,

Two words–“it’s fiction!”

There’s been a lot of hubbub around here about this. I don’t think it’s a real threat to anyone who doesn’t get their catechesis from fiction. I read it; I liked it. But I don’t think Christ married Mary Magdelene. I don’t think the Church has kept any great big secrets. I saw Dogma too. Enjoyed it. But I don’t think there was a black apostle named Rufus either. Go ahead, read it if you want. It doesn’t prove anything. But remember—“it’s fiction!”

John


#5

[quote=John Higgins]Julie,

Two words–“it’s fiction!”

There’s been a lot of hubbub around here about this. I don’t think it’s a real threat to anyone who doesn’t get their catechesis from fiction. I read it; I liked it. But I don’t think Christ married Mary Magdelene. I don’t think the Church has kept any great big secrets. I saw Dogma too. Enjoyed it. But I don’t think there was a black apostle named Rufus either. Go ahead, read it if you want. It doesn’t prove anything. But remember—“it’s fiction!”

John
[/quote]

Look smart people like you can read it and ignore the authors conclsions but obviously a lot of people are getting their catechesis from reading this tripe. I wouldn’t recommend reading it unless your well grounded in your faith obviously some have left the faith by reading this work of fiction not realizing its fiction.
Remember this many people thought the world was coming to and end during the broadcast of Orsen Wells boadcast of War or The Worlds many people thought the world was literally coming to an end. Just a reminder that fiction is very real to a lot of misinformed people fiction is not always harmless.


#6

[quote=John Higgins]Julie,

Two words–“it’s fiction!”

There’s been a lot of hubbub around here about this. ** I don’t think it’s a real threat to anyone who doesn’t get their catechesis from fiction.** I read it; I liked it. But I don’t think Christ married Mary Magdelene. I don’t think the Church has kept any great big secrets. I saw Dogma too. Enjoyed it. But I don’t think there was a black apostle named Rufus either. Go ahead, read it if you want. It doesn’t prove anything. But remember—“it’s fiction!”

John
[/quote]

Ahh, but the sad fact is that many people do. Here is a good article that speaks to that very point:

carl-olson.com/articles/la_envoy73_tdvc.html

As for the Da Vinci Code, it is a poorly written novel with a lot of non-history thrown in with poorly researched facts that reflects the anti-Catholic agenda of it’s author. For all the information you’ll ever need to debunk this garbage, click here.

carl-olson.com/abouttdvc.html

The sad fact remains, however, that no matter how much information you give some people, if they want to believe the lies in books like this because they have an ax to grind against religion or authority in general, and the Church in particular, there’s not much you can say or do. Small minds love a conspiracy, weak minds will believe what ever one reads without looking into the facts, and angry or hateful minds are quick to believe the worst about those they hate.


#7

After the things I read and heard about it from good Catholic sources (like Catholic Answers and EWTN) I do not plan on going anywhere near that book. It’s outright blasphemous as far as I am concerned.


#8

Its a good read, and the other posters are correct. Its fiction, just like the bible.


#9

[quote=AmericanAtheist]Its a good read, and the other posters are correct. Its fiction, just like the bible.
[/quote]

:rolleyes:

– Mark L. Chance.


#10

Always funny how atheists lambast us for our dogmatism and then make dogmatic statements like that.

Anyway, one of the contributers to Our Sunday Visitor pointed out that the Bible makes no bones about the fact that Peter sinned big and often. Now if the Church was really involved in conspiritorial monkey-business, wouldn’t they have gotten rid of these stories?

Scott


#11

think of it this way

If the Davinci code is true then I am a direct descendant of Jesus.

Now what do you believe?


#12

The problem with the “it’s just fiction” argument is that Dan Brown specifically states that the historical details of his book are not fictional.

If white supremacist had written a novel with the underlying assumption that black people are an inferior race, I hardly think anyone would say “it’s just fiction.” Brown is simply engaging revising history to suit his personal anti-Christian tastes and then marketing it as fiction in order to avoid the need to justify his wild claims acadmically.

Unfortunately we live in a country where most people get their “knowledge” from popular culture rather than serious study. I would venture a guess that more people have drawn a conclusion about JFK’s assassination based on Oliver Stone’s film than have done so from reading serious books. The same will probably be true regarding Catholic history and The Da Vinci Code if it is not true already.

I would imagine that most of the “historical scholarship” that Brown supposedly based his novel on would get laughed out of any sort of peer reviewed academic journal. Brown isn’t really doing anything different than folks like Jack Chick or Tim LaHaye do. It’s just that Brown has a pagan agenda rather than a fundamentalist one.


#13

I think the DaVinci Code is so popular because in certain respects the idea of Jesus being married rings true.

I think it is very unfortunate though, that the idea of a married Jesus is now associated with ideas of Church deception and weird theories about Jesus decendants being mixed with royal European bloodlines and what-not.

If I found out for a fact that Jesus really was married, it wouldn’t seem that strange to me. Jesus came to live among us as human. Being married and raising a family is a huge part of human life.

I don’t think the church suppressed such information however. If anything it could have been simply lost in history. The bible does not come out and say, “Oh, by the way, the first Pope was married.” Such a declaration would seem odd to the original readers of the New Testament because a married man was not news. One of the only places where the New Testament mentions Peter’s marriage is indirect: It was an account of Peter visiting his mother-in-law (Matthew 8:14).

I think it would be entirely possible that when the Gospels and Epistles were written the Apostles did not see the need to advertise the identity of Jesus’ wife. Jesus was killed by the authorities and Christians were being persecuted at the time (circa AD 70). No real need to put Jesus’ family in additional danger. Then without a specific written record, the knowledge might have been simply lost.

I don’t believe that to be true, but I hold it out as an interesting possibility, and the truth one way or the other would not have that significant of an impact on my faith as a whole.


#14

[quote=juliegh23]My sister-in-law, who often likes to antagonize me, recently found out I am converting to Catholicism. She is a protestant, who use to go to a tabernacle church, but quit when her atheist boyfriend didn’t like it. Then they moved in together. I say these things because after finding out I was converting she antagonistically asked if I had read the Da Vinci Code. I said no, and she stood there with a stunned look on her face. She then suggested I read it, she had already. I am anticipating the next questions she will inevitably ask, and want to know, WHAT"S UP WITH THE DA VINCI CODE? What should I know about it, and how would I answer the questions she might ask. HELP!!!
[/quote]

It’s fiction.

Product of a writer’s imagination.


#15

The most curious element of the “it’s just fiction” response (which is correct) is that so many readers, even while knowing it is fiction, believe that there is really something to all of this.

The same people who will summarily ignore two thousand years of thological and philosophical thought by some of the wisest men to ever live, in explaining the meaning and complexities of the Catholic faith, will read the magnaminous DAN BROWN and immediately attach credibility to him.

Why that happens is a mystery to me, but it does.

Next time someone looks incredulously and asks if you’ve read “The Da Vinci Code,” as if it is gospel, turn it around. “Yes. It’s fiction. Now, have YOU read the Summa Theologica, by Thomas Aquinas?” Of course, they are likely to say “no.” Tell them that after they digest that, then you’ll compare notes in the relative scholarship evident between the two authors.


#16

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