Episode 31: Young Adult Fiction September 18, 2011 Featuring Matt Anderson and Ben De Bono Standard Podcast Play Now Categories: Podcast, Review # news#sci-fi#young adult
Hi guys – Another great episode.
I wanted to share what I think is a good reason (in my mind, anyway) why a sympathetic character praising Allah should give us no moral pause: because the real world has non-Christians in it, and, if we’re going to be good neighbors (and Jesus did tell us to love our neighbors), then part of that is learning about their religion and culture when it is different than ours. I am not saying necessarily endorsing it, I’m not saying don’t share the Gospel with others; I’m just saying we need to teach our kids, “Guess what, not everyone in the world believes the way you do.” There’s a lot of Muslim stereotypes, frankly, in Aladdin that, were I Muslim, I’d probably object to (and many Muslims did at the time it was released); but “Praise Allah” wouldn’t be one of them. As Matt said, it’s a Muslim praising God in his own langauge (Allah is simply the Arabic word for “God”; I believe many Arabic Christians use the word “Allah,” as well). If a child watching Aladdin wanted to know who “Allah” was and why the sultan is praising him, I’d be happy to tell him; and then we could have a discussion about whether we believe Muslims and Christians worship the same God, how to relate to other religions, etc. These are matters Christians disagree about, in good conscience; but we can’t hide the fact that the world is not of one religious mind from our kids. I think the earlier we teach them about cultural differences, the better. Again, this does not mean pretending all religions and cultures are the same or equally valid; but it does mean exposing them to the fact that not everyone is just like us.
Thanks for another fun, in-depth discussion!
i LOVED the Neverending story (the movie)! I used to think Atreyu was cute so it was one of my favorite movies as a kid.