Tuesday, February 28, 2012

When the dawn opened.

Gladly the dreads I felt, too dire to tell,
The hopeless, pathless, lightless hours forgot,
I turn my tale to that which next befell,
When the dawn opened, and the night was not.  
-Dante's Inferno

Every person has a religion. Generally I avoid that term like the plague--it carries such a horrid feeling of dry-bones and long tradition and deadness with it. But I use the term in lieu of the fact that I haven't found a better one that is so all-encompassing.
 That explained, it's a fact, despite the myriads of human beings who deny their allegiance to any sort of "religion" in the general sense. I would boldly declare [again] that everyone has a religion. Your religion may be the Religion of No-Religion. But Man was created to worship and whether it is worshiping Jesus Christ, as it should be, or whether it is worshiping your own ideas of no-worship, it happens. It's built into the very fiber of our being. We need to understand that in order to live in this world--it's a fundamental truth that is often overlooked. And this is issue no less important than in literature. I know that many authors have done far better and more thorough jobs of the topic in longer posts, but I thought I'd just tell you a bit about where my Scarlettania and Gildnoir lies in this plethora of rabbit-trails.

Gildnoir worships neither God, nor any other sort of material idols. They reverence battle, warriors, skill with the sword, and allegiance to one's country and clan. That is the long and short of the doctrine of Gildnoir. Most obey it and bend knee to this god of War but others, namely a certain Diccon Quarry--are not content with this life and they almost unconsciously refute this War-god by forsaking their clan and breaking allegiance with their country. Diccon cautions Fitz-Hughes not to swear by the Hand that made him, for he will find the Hand's punishment far worse than that Diccon proffers. It's a primitive scheme, but rather powerful--even the Greeks and Romans had bouts with such a god in their day.

Scarlettania is a bit different--as it is essentially a fairy-tale world, it mirrors closely our own. There are church-men, there is truth, there is light. The Light is not exactly clearly named, for it filters into that world from our own and a little something is lost in the translation, but they are, like the places in Pilgrim's Progress, beautiful and just and noble. They crave light and live in the light and, did they live in our world, they would be God-followers. There is no definitive mention of Christianity in Scarlettania and Gildnoir, and yet I have made certain to keep Darkness and Light separate, meaning for the light to be from the one True Light: Jesus.

Diccon Quarry comes out of Darkness craving...he knows not what...and yet he is drawn to Scarlettania as if by an invisible hand and he finds Light. He finds purity and honor and love and truth. It's a beautiful paradox that I never grow tired of.

You see, I am not finished thrashing out all the details yet, but Christianity gets to this world shadow-like. Enough to cause one of the characters to wistfully remark to one of the Macefield bunch that at least earth-folk have an unerring Hand working in their lives. Thus it is that the Macefields learn to turn to the Author who is perfect.

And this is where things get muddled-er, if that's a word. Because you see, since Scarlettania is a make-believe country full of make-believe people who are all dictated to by Mr. Adoniram Woolcott Macefield, he is, in essence, their god. Not that they worship him--oh no. But he is writing their story just as God has written ours. Everything, truly, revolves around the Pen of Macefield. They swear by it and their oath is concrete after having that mighty name before it. They wait for his inky decrees as pilgrims wait for a sign on high. So you can imagine their delight, slight trepidation, and awe when a whole covey of sons and daughters of Macefield drop into their laps. The Scarlettanians frequently mention the fact that they are celebrities:

"Never let it be said that I let a daughter of Macefield wear rags when there are gossamine gowns at hand..."

Charlotte says she finds it uncomfortable to be in the position of a sort of demigod and looked upon with such reverence and awe.

Comments like that pepper the book and provide amusement on one hand and a slight bitter-sweet flavor on the other...I am not sure I am making much sense, but I was trying to extract from the annals of my mind just what was going on with religion and my Gypsy-Song.
But one thing is certain: as I write this book and realize how erring the hand of an authoress really is, I am ever more thankful that Jesus has written my story with perfect precision. There will be no rewriting and no editing is required. I've got the real deal in my Savior. He is Author, Editor, and Publisher all rolled into one....yes. We earth-folk have a blessed existence indeed.


Unknown said...

Beautifully said.

Morgan said...

Wonderfully put! I can't wait to read the whole thing!!:)

Rachel Hope said...

This is a great post, I really love how you dive into your stories and look at them from such an interesting perspective. your story sounds so neat
Rachel Hope