My first thought when I first saw the poster advertisement for Avatar was something to the effect of, “Weird cartoon-sounding name, weird blue people, umm… I think I’ll pass.”
My curiosity got the better of me however and after reading more about it, I went to see it. A little skeptical at the beginning, my opinion soon changed. I loved it! *One of the effects of the movie was a desire to go to Pandora – if I could eliminate the scary people-eating monsters. The color, the beauty, the adventure of flying on birds, the pervading connection of everything…it was almost like getting a taste of paradise…or Heaven…or Eden (again, all without the scary people-eating monsters).
C.S. Lewis once wrote something to the effect that we were created with a longing for a special kind of indescribable beauty, and that if the fulfillment of such a longing did not exist, God wouldn’t have given us that hunger in the first place.
The more I thought about Pandora, the more I realized that such a place had existed – the Garden of Eden (and it didn’t have the scary people-eating monsters!).
Read Genesis 1:26-30, 2:8-20..
What was Adam and Eve’s relationship with the plants and animals like?
Maybe I’m being too logical now, but somehow I don’t think Adam’s naming of all the creatures took place in a day. It never actually tells us how long it did take, or how long Adam and Even were in the garden before the incident with the serpent.
Just for fun, imagine and write down some of the things you think Adam and Eve may have done in Eden – ride on the back of Pterodactyls, etc.…
Now, thinking of this perfect world in perfect relationship with each other, and in perfect relationship with the most Amazing Being who created it all, imagine the shock and emotions of the first two people as they were suddenly forced out of it by their own actions. All they had ever known was perfection, and suddenly, because of what they had done, they were surrounded by nothing but imperfection.
Write down some of the things you think they might have felt.
Have you ever felt a longing for beauty and connection? When?
Have you ever felt any of the emotions you think Adam and Eve might have felt? When?
I read later that there are now chat room support groups for people who fell into a depression after watching Avatar because of how much they yearned for the world of Pandora. How amazing for those who believe God’s promise that right now we can again have a close relationship and connection with our Creator! How incredible that He has given us a hope for a beautiful, perfect world yet to come! Maybe reality is more exciting than fantasy.
*I want to say that although I think Avatar is definitely a spiritual movie, I don’t think it is a “Christian” movie. I also believe that God is powerful enough to let his truth be seen in both the Christian and non-Christian actions and creations of people.