Language Lessons

The issue of language has always been a tricky one in Christian circles, and debates tend to flare up whenever controversial movies are released, such as the recent Deadpool movie. Too often Christians get caught up in which words are good or bad, when the real issue is in the heart. As I see it, there are five main ways in which people use “swear words.” The following examples don’t apply to taking the Lord’s name in vain – that has ramifications for Christians that are beyond the scope of this post.

 

  1. Proper Context

Example: “I’ll be right back, I need to shit.”

This is no different from using the commonly accepted alternatives (poop, dump, crap). Fun fact: the words we consider more acceptable have Latin origins, while their more “vulgar” counterparts have Germanic origins. That’s a bit racist, don’t you think?

  1. Insulting/Demeaning

Example: “You’re a piece of shit.”

As Christians we should always be kind in our speech and not looking to hurt others. This is true whether we’re using “bad” words or not. There are plenty of “clean” insults that are just as wrong as the above example.

  1. Humor

Example: “I work in sanitation. It’s a shitty job.”

If the humor isn’t hurtful to another person (see #2) there’s nothing morally wrong with it. Screen your jokes for situation-appropriateness, and recognize that others have different senses of humor.

  1. Modernized Meaning

Example: “No shit, you’re serious?”

Words take on new meanings over time. There’s nothing wrong with adapting accordingly, but be sensitive to the situation. If your audience doesn’t understand your meaning, it can cause trouble.

  1. Emphasis

Example: “Shit! I just crashed my car!”

Sometimes extreme situations call for extreme words. However, if you regularly use strong language, when you need a really strong word you won’t have any left.

 

As a general rule, I measure language by the intent and context. Is the language hurtful? Or is it just a way of communicating? Words were created for communication, and I don’t think the words themselves are bad as much as how we use them.

 

5 Spiritual Parallels in The Lion King

  1. “Run away and never come back”

Scar convinces Simba that he’s done something terrible – so terrible that he can never be forgiven and the only response possible is to run as far and as fast as he can. I think sometimes we let ourselves be tricked into thinking that our mistakes are so big there can be no forgiveness, when in reality God is still waiting with welcoming arms.

 

  1. “Hakuna Matata”

The famous phrase: no worries. In this case it means living a carefree life, but in the Christian life we don’t need to worry either. Not because there are no challenges (there are) but because God is in control.

 

  1. “He lives in you”

The Bible says that we are temples of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 6:19). This means that God (our heavenly father) lives in us. We want the world to see Him reflected through us.

 

  1. “You have forgotten who you are”

Perhaps the most powerful line in the movie is Mufasa’s statement (thundering from the clouds, dramatically) “You are my son.” We are God’s children, princes and princesses in the kingdom, but it’s all too easy for us to forget this. We believe that we’re worthless, when in fact we’re priceless. We treat each other as strangers or worse, when in fact we’re all precious brothers and sisters in Christ.

 

  1. “Yes, the past can hurt.”

“But the way I see it, you can either run from it or learn from it.” Wise words from Rafiki. This one isn’t strictly limited to Christianity; it’s just good life advice for everyone.

 

Let’s Geek Out

The single best thing about Doctor Who is the fans.
When the show began, it was an educational program about history and science. Then the Daleks happened. Fans loved them (or rather, we loved to hate them – geeks are weird like that), so the powers-that-be decided to make it a show about aliens.
Fans loved the show so much that the writers decided to give the Doctor the ability to regenerate, so the show could continue after the lead actor left. That superpower allowed Doctor Who to become the longest running TV show in all of time and space.
After the show was cancelled, fans demanded a movie, and in 1996 we got a movie. That has happened three times that I know of, and Doctor Who was the first.
The movie wasn’t all that good, but fans didn’t let up, and in 2005 the show came back from the dead. No other show has ever accomplished that, as far as I know.
Honestly, I’m not sure which came first: Tom Baker’s scarf or the fans that were devoted enough to wear it. Since then, the Doctor’s outfits have continued to be ridiculous, but fans continue to emulate them.
Women-Doctors
There are conventions and Daleks and Cybermen and Tumblr and DIY sonic screwdrivers and fish fingers and custard and loads of other inside jokes and Tumblr and fan fiction (sweet Rassilon the fan fiction) and Tumblr.
And then there was Osgood.
serveimage
As geeks, we at the Correlation enjoy geeking out about Doctor Who and loads of other things. We hope you enjoy our posts and maybe see things from a new perspective. As Christians, we are excited to spread our message as far as we can by building on the fandom community. And you can help.
First we need to make connections with you. Our blog has a Facebook page and a Twitter. We each have our own Twitter accounts, too. Like us and Follow us, and we’ll get some conversations going.
For example, we need a profile picture for both of these accounts. We’ve asked you to submit photos that match our theme of Christianity meets geek-dom.
Let’s connect.
The Correlation on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thecorrelationblog/?ref=aymt_homepage_panel
@CorrelationBlog on Twitter: https://twitter.com/CorrelationBlog
Noah: @noahspud
Isaac: @Isaac_Trenti
Arth: @Arthwaya

 

Okay. Real talk. Our class is over, so we’re not required to post to this blog anymore. We have more posts to post, but when those run out we may decide to stop writing.
If we managed to get a large enough community, some of us might be convinced to keep going. That really depends on you. If you want to see more, let us know by connecting with us on social media.
Like I said, we want to get a community going both as geeks and as Christians. But mostly we want people to geek out with.

Far Cry Primal: Story and Setting

I’ve been seeing Far Cry Primal a lot lately, probably because it came out recently. I’m not at all surprised; Ubisoft’s advertisement campaigns are second-to-none, and they need it to make up for the mistakes of Assassin’s Creed Unity. (And Syndicate for some players.) Since I haven’t played the game yet, I’m trying not to jump on the bandwagon, though I am following it at a safe distance on a bicycle.

The thing that sets Primal apart from the previous Far Cry games is its setting. While Far Cry 3 was set on a distant island (and you were basically Oliver Queen from Arrow) and 4 put you in the courts of a violent warlord in Nepal, Primal takes things all the way back to the 10,000 BC, when woolly mammoths and saber-toothed tigers roam the forests, and man just discovered fire. Here, you play as Takar, the beast-master caveman.

One would think that I, as a representative of the Christian community, would get up in arms against Primal for promoting the Theory of Evolution, the arch-nemesis to our faith.

However, I have nothing to say about this game in light of Evolution vs. Creationism. I see Primal’s setting as just that: a setting. To me, the Paleolithic Era is no different than Middle Earth in Lord of the Rings. It’s similar to our world, but not similar enough to actually be our world. After all, this isn’t the first time Far Cry has utilized a fictional setting. 3 had Rook Island, 4 had Kyrat, Blood Dragon had “Robocop in Wonderland.” Far Cry is a fanchise about surviving the things life throws at you. Whatever strange locale Primal has will fit right in.

Even though it’s apples-to-oranges, I compare this game to the movie Ice Age. I watched this movie at a fairly young age and was amused by it. I didn’t think anything of it existing in the evolutionary timeline because of the story. I was following the characters and their journey, not the world in which they were on their journey.

My point is this: While the setting for Primal is one of its main sales points, I hope that it doesn’t come before the story. I want to cheer for Takar just as I cheered for Manny.

Let’s Connect
@Isaac_Trenti

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What Is A “Fandom”?

Since starting this blog I’ve been giving a lot of thought to what a fandom is. I realized recently that the word is a combination of “fan” and “kingdom.” This made sense, and I probably should have realized it sooner, but it’s one of those words I’ve just always used without stopping to think about where it came from. Like never (not ever) and studying (student dying).

So a fandom is a kingdom, or group, of fans all united in their love of one thing, be it a sport, movie, TV show, singer, book, or other interest. I started this blog under premise that fiction can be integrated with faith, and that fandoms are just large groups of people who enjoy fiction. But the more I think about it, the more I realize that fandoms are much more than that. They’re a community. They provide a common interest that people can unite around in order to socialize. Socialization is a core human need, and as an introvert I find it difficult to engage in social interaction. My fandoms provide a community of people I can interact with who all have a common interest and who I’m generally much more comfortable talking to. In many cases, the conversation then spreads from there. I’ve seen many examples of people who found each other through fandoms becoming good friends, or even of total strangers whose only commonality is their love of a TV show supporting each other through issues like depression or anxiety. A fandom is a community, and a community is support.

Lastly, I’ve been tossing around the idea that a fandom is power. Wherever you have a group of people united together you have the power to make positive change. Fans have banded together to get canceled shows back on the air. If we have the power to do that, what else could we do? Maybe we could change the world.

Let’s connect.
@Arthwaya

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City Hunter: Revenge vs. Justice

Alright, so I might be getting a little obscure here, but I love K-dramas. By far my favorite K-drama is City Hunter. If you haven’t seen it, I highly recommend it.

City-hunter-poster-2In this show the main character, Yoon Sung, has been trained his entire life by his father
for one purpose: to kill five high-ranking government officials. Years earlier, his father had been a soldier in a secret mission against North Korea. These five government officials in the South Korean government authorized a special unit of soldiers to move against North Korea, but after deploying the soldiers they began feeling political pressures and realized that any action taken against North Korea would damage their relations with other nations. However, it was too late to call off the secret mission, so they sent in men to kill their own soldiers. Yoon Sung’s father was the only one who managed to escape this slaughter, and he desperately wants revenge against the five men who ordered his death.

Yoon Sung quickly realizes that killing these men purely out of revenge will start a vicious cycle. After all, what happens when the children of these men take revenge against him? He also discovers that each of the five men is corrupt and is using their power in the government for personal gain, at the expense of others. He decides, rather than killing them, to expose their corruption to the public so that they will be tried and sentenced for their crimes.

One thing I love about this show is that it wrestles with the difference between revenge and justice. Yoon Sung recognizes his father’s vengeful attitude as destructive, but also realizes that the crimes of these men should not go unpunished, so he comes up with a solution that fulfills the need for justice without resorting to murder. In Yoon Sung’s story I find an illustration of a fundamental human struggle resolved in a very Christian way.

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@Arthwaya
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Non-Traditional Romance: Should You Ship It?

*Spoilers (sort of) for Person of Interest, The 100, and The Last of Us. Also gay people. In case you don’t want to hear about them, either.*

For Valentine’s Day, some other geek-centric sites discussed their favorite fictional romances. I noticed a small trend.
Captain Jack Harkness. Madame Vastra. Bo the Lost Succubus. Clarke and Lexa. Root and Shaw. Ellie from the Last of Us. An alternate universe version of Superman and Batman.
Xena. Kirk and Spock.
Orange is the New Black.
In case you haven’t caught on, those are all gay people. I have a theory about this.
Fandoms have their own rules. Captain Jack comes from a time period where humanity has adapted to be very “flexible.” Some of the others aren’t even human, making them even more flexible.
But we watch with the predispositions of our world, with our rules. These romances are unusual, so when they pop up, they give the story the benefit of an unexpected twist, even if there has already been flirting.
The other benefit of non-traditional romances is that they’re a nice change from the lead male-lead female relationship that seems to be the standard rule. Those can be really good, of course, but from a nerd perspective it’s nice when they shake things up a bit.
Then again, we at the Correlation have to watch them from a Christian perspective. Based on a Biblical worldview, these romances are wrong. I struggle with whether or not I’m “allowed” to enjoy them. My theory about that is a little harder to swallow.
These universes are not ours. The rules are different. So are the metaphysical entities. God does not exist in these fictional universes to judge these people. And that’s not blasphemy.
Even if God exists in, say, Person of Interest, Root certainly doesn’t acknowledge Him. Ellie is a hormonal teenager in a zombie apocalypse. They’re not considering the consequences of their actions, and within the rules of the story we as fans aren’t supposed to, either.
We shouldn’t emulate these romances, just like we shouldn’t emulate Buffy and Spike or Bella and Edward. But I say we can still enjoy them.
– Noah

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@noahspud
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