Saturday, July 30, 2005

Soylent Green is PEOPLE!!

In the movie Soylent Green (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0070723/) the titular product is a government developed foostuff given to the overpopulated throngs of futuristic city-dwellers. The rationing of soylent green was made necessary by man's poor stewardship of the earth's resources and has thus become the only hope for the survival of humanity. In that sense, the Church is very much like soylent green -- the Bible speaks of the church in the most superlative terms imaginable, characterizing it as the earth's only hope for survival in the wake of sin and death -- the city on a hill and the salt of the world. But by the end of the movie Charlton Heston discovers the horrifying secret, which has become the movie's most well-remembered line (for the six people who've seen it) -- "Soylent Green is PEOPLE!!!" Sadly, this is no less horrifying a discovery in regards to this thing called the "Church". A community established to herald (and embody) all of the beauty of Jesus' coming kingdom, and provide a shelter of hope from the omnious fate of destruction to which the earth is doomed, this praiseworthy ideal turns out to be made of people -- and that of course means that it's flawed, even embarassingly so at times. Perhaps no area of Christian life displays that more than theological discussion, where doctrinal lynching commonly replaces the charity which is supposedly our distinguishing mark (Jn. 13:35) and where unilateral agreement is the demanded starting point for fellowship rather than the patient hope of edification. This blog is a place where I can rant and (hopefully) dialogue about my own spiritual journey, theological discovery and about how the Church can best fulfill its mission as the "New Humanity". The reason it's called "Soylent Green" is to remind us that despite the superlatives of the Church's ideals, we have need for great humility -- after all, the Church isn't just a theological ideal or an abstract doctrine -- it's PEOPLE!

17 comments:

metalepsis said...

I am going straight to the library and checking out Soylent Green, so you may have to update your blog to state that 7 people have seen it, perhaps 8 if I can coax my wife into watching it. I suspected that your wife loved you more than me.

Cheers,

TheBlueRaja said...

Check out the sound file here.

Blogtastic said...

I'm so proud of you! This is defintely a step in the right direction!

Neighbor Norris

Nathan Logan said...

Good stuff you got there, yo.

Keep the posts a'comin'.

Flathead said...

Delightful! Do your enemies know of this? What will they think? Are you prepared for more chaffing?

TheBlueRaja said...

Thanks for your kind assessment, Flathead! I'm not sure if my enemies know of this or not, but I do hope for God's strength to love them! Chaffing can often be a way of smoothing rough edges, my need for which I'm painfully aware!

Anonymous said...

Hey, Sharad.

This, I think, is the first post I've left on a "blog" thingy. I feel very technically accomplished now.

Jeremy Jensen said...

Do you really have enemies? That sounds intriguing.

TheBlueRaja said...

That really is intriguing, isn't it? Jesus seemed to promise I'd have them and was rather unequivocal about how I should treat them, but I don't know exactly how to go about identifying them . . .

jeremy jensen said...

It's easy to identify your enemies. They're all wearing koolats. Just trust me on this one.

metalepsis said...

Ok, I saw it. Star wars really killed Sci-Fi, it used to be so smart. When you posted that Soylent Green was people, I thought you were being metaphorical, like what is important is not SG what is important is people. So when I found out that SG was really people, well yuk! Powerful movie, its funny how people still don't give a damn about the environment, so perhaps you can change your tag line to green soylent, to convey both messages.
My favorite line is when Sol gets the margarine out and Heston quips 'that margarines turned' sol remarks 'son of a bitch', people should talk like that more! Well back to the furniture!

Rose~ said...

Excellent...
I thought I saw every Charleton film there was. Your connection between the film and your assessment of the church is very convoluted . . . and that is probably why I like it . . . but I like roller coasters, too!

I must tell you: after viewing your profile and the photo that was inspired by the blogger question (I really got a charge out of that), I figured "Soylent Green" was perhaps the name of the template you chose for your blog! Glad to see it has a more sophisticated meaning.

You are creative AND witty (I noted the "witty" in your discussions with Pyro). I will be back. You are blessed, Sharad. (your name?)

TheBlueRaja said...

You are very sweet, Rose. Yes, my name is Sharad. Not a very popular choice in Idaho. I wish my parents would have named me something else and billed me for 400 odd dollars from birth instead of having people beat me up and take my lunch money in grade school, but there you have it. Your blog reflects some creativity and with of your own, and I'm genuinely pleased to have your approval!

Rose~ said...

I also saw in your profile, if I remember correctly, that you did your own kids the same favor your parents did you. At least you can comfort them with empathy, Sharad!

marc said...

I thought you named it Soylent Green because we in the Body of Christ tend to devour one another.

TheBlueRaja said...

That's as good a reason as any!

marc said...

BTW I asked you a question on your Grenz comment over at FideO