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The Matrix - Revolutions

23 October, 2003 10:41 PM

November 5th will see The Matrix - Revolutions released.

November 6th will see youth pastors across the globe trying to incorporate it into their Sunday night sermons. The Christian blog scene will be in a frenzy interpreting what it all means. Parallels between Neo and Christ will be drawn til the cows come home.

I remember last year when The Matrix - Reloaded was released reading two blog reviews of the movie that came from a similar yet different perspective to the typical Christian review. One was from a Muslim gentleman the other from a Jewish woman. Both interpreted it through their own faith perspectives.

Strange how the same thing can be interpreted through such different lenses.

Here are some links looking at the movies from different perspectives.

Buddhism, Christianity, and The Matrix

Matrix as Messiah Movie

Similarities between the Matrix and the Gospel

The Matrix is a Parable of old-fashion religious redemption

The New Gnostic Gospel

The Matrix and Nondual Spirituality

Is the movie "The Matrix" about the Christianity Meme?

Philosophy and the Matrix

The Matrix and Quantum Consciousness

The Matrix and Buddhism

The Matrix: Religion vs. Philosophy

The Matrix and Skepticism

Escaping the Matrix

The Matrix, or, the two sides of Perversion

Myth meets Internet in 'Matrix'

Moving into the Matrix: An examination of postmodernism, Cyberpunk, and technology's role in future societies

The Matrix Metaphor

Reexamining Reloaded: A Christian Perspective on the Matrix Trilogy

Matrix Reloaded Explained

Matrix Continues New Age Gospel of Christian, Egyptian & Greek Mythology Blend

Review of Matrix Revolutions from a Christian perspective - and another

The Matrix Revolutions: Back to a Messianic Allegory

There are loads more links out there. I have not read all of the above and cannot guarantee their quality, but offer it as a starting point for thinking about the different perspectives on this fascinating trilogy that people have taken. Enjoy. Feel free to leave your own links in comments.

update: My reflections on how the Matrix has made people think.

You may also be interested in a similar list on links about The Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter

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Comments

Page:

"One was from a Muslim gentleman the other from a Jewish woman. Both interpreted it through their own faith perspectives."

That's exactly the sort of thing that leads me to say, The Matrix was (is) one of the first truly "post-modern" films.

Jonathan » 23 October, 2003 11:37 PM

Some good stuff, Darren. The Matrix is a rockin' set of films and a great place to start a spiritual conversation. It's one of the few recent films that I've actually purchased.

Missy » 24 October, 2003 12:20 AM

I like the Matrix movies... I wonder at times though what is the spiritual significance of all the round of ammunition falling at the feet of the 'Messiah' figure.

Does it really please the Spirit to be associated with such violence...

well besides the 'blood to the bridles' reference of course...

Gator » 24 October, 2003 12:49 AM

Not surprising, I guess, that Neo and his story would be interpreted differently thru various lenses. Surely, Jesus and his story have been.

Jimmy » 24 October, 2003 4:54 AM

Hey Daz! I am back! When can we hang? In terms of the Matrix, nothing new under the sun. Remember a little movie called "Star Wars"? These guys aren't dumb. George Lucas makes it clear that he drew on the stories found in all of the major faith's to compile the worldview found in the Star Wars trilogy. Personally, I reckon the Wachowski brothers did exactly the same thing but the difference was, they only had eyes for one thing... $$$

Stephen Said » 24 October, 2003 6:54 AM

i don't think getting into the film biz for cash is a bad idea. i mean, people spend their whole lives working on PhDs solely for money, yet our society generally sees them as achievers. doesn't mean they're greedy. and star wars has/had neither the eye candy, nor the deep philosophical themes the matrix comes with.

and "the brothers" didn't almost put a member of NSYNC in the cast.

as for the messiah thing: if you believe whoever dreamed up the plot was being allegorical, you're nuts. not that it's necessarily a bad thing, being nuts that is. it's like oscar wilde said: "to be great is to be misunderstood."

ted » 24 October, 2003 2:28 PM

Hi, Darren! One blog that I've visited often is entitled "Matrix Essays." Its URL is http://matrixessays.blogspot.com

Take care and enjoy your warmer weather! (We're having our first frost this week in Dayton, Ohio USA)

Dan Johnson » 24 October, 2003 4:06 PM

The Spiritual Message of 'The Matrix'

"Gnosticism maintains that the world that we�re living in is not the ultimate reality," says Frances Flannery Dailey, who teaches religion at Hendrix College in Conway, Ark. "It believes that the god who created this world is not the ultimate god -- there is a higher God, a transcendent reality."

In his book The Gospel Reloaded, Greg Garrett -- a professor of English at Baylor University -- says the action and violence of the film series may be the most effective way to draw in the crowds and communicate a spiritual message in a media-saturated world.

you have to be careful what you put into your mind. Satan is subtle.

aubrey » 28 October, 2003 10:36 PM

The Matrix Revolutions: Rama-Kandra

What you need to know about Rama-Kandra before you see Revolutions....


"You have the sight now Neo.
You are looking at the world without time."

The Oracle, Matrix Reloaded

What does it mean to look at the world without time? What does time have to do with the Matrix Trilogy?
Email Your Beliefs, my answer to follow...

Matrix Blog, Links & Commentary » 2 November, 2003 3:15 PM

hey ppl,
i just saw "revolutions" and thus completed havin watched the trilogy. i have been pondering about the philosophy aspect of the matrix ever since i saw the matrix. me being a non religious person i did not see it from a religious point of view but from a much broader, bigger and wider pespective... creation and life. in the end all you need is love.
later.

feroze » 6 November, 2003 7:02 AM

I watched revolutions a few hours ago and I am more than disappointed...

I watched few hours ago » 6 November, 2003 9:29 AM

I just watched Revolutions. For those of you who claim to see no religious connections...you didn't watch it, so stop lying, please. The reason so many parallels between Neo and Christ will be drawn is because the W Bros. Didn't want to leave any doubt that the story was definitely based at least partly on the Bible. The position Neo took (I'm not going to spoil by adding any serious details...if you saw it you know what I'm talking about), the end promise, the role of Smith as Neo's "opposite" (think AntiChrist), the Merivingian's seat in Hell dressed as he was and with the background behind him...its inarguable. I think it is incredible that the Brothers would take something they knew all would see and make it Christian...it shows they have some of their priorities straight....
Thanks for listening to my ideas, I'll talk to you about them personally if you wanna email me....
Theophilus (look the name up)

Theophilus » 6 November, 2003 12:54 PM

I just saw it too. That has got to be the most amount of Christian parallels that i Have seen in a modern, mainstream movie! It is undeniable.

Jay Smith » 6 November, 2003 3:30 PM

I have watched the revolutions and Yes! It definitely has religious overtones. It combines christian ideologies with Buddhist beliefs and Hindu Karma.

At the end of the movie, the song that is played is a Buddhist chant. The premise that good triumphs over evil and mankind will prevail is an age old concept that is common to every single culture in the world. I guess the "W" brothers took the Christian theme to appease the western audiences.
But on the whole, the Matrix trilogy has raised the bar on Sci-Fi movies. The series will definitely be a part of my all time greatest movie collection.

BodhiSatva » 6 November, 2003 11:46 PM

Those people who think this movie is purely about Christianity need to take a good hard look at the lenses that they are looking at the movie through. I suspect they will be western, evangelical lenses. Its about so much more than Christianity.

Dean » 6 November, 2003 11:51 PM

The chant at the end goes further back than buddhism - it's one of the oldest hindu sanskrit chants (aum shanti shanti shanti) - an invocation of peace. Aum is meant to be the sound of the universe, which is of course, in Hinduism and Buddhism, ultimately illusory. The two biggest influences on the trilogy are postmodernism (especially as seen in Baudrillard and Lacan) and, I've come to suspect, Hinduism. There is a strong synergy between these worldviews - both deny any absolutes and both incorporate into themselves all kinds of other perspectives. Neo is clearly deliberately intended to be a messiah figure with strong echoes of Christ (the Wachowskis know thier culture after all) but he also has very strong connections with Shiva. Hindu gods are not above violence and engage in sexual relationships with women. At both of these points, the connection between Neo and Jesus falls apart.

I dropped in here by accident looking for something else so doubt I'll return. if you want to discuss this with me, go to the Damaris Discussion Forum (www.damaris.org/discuss). You might be interested to look at my study guide on Matrix Revolutions on www.culturewatch.org.

Tony Watkins

tony » 7 November, 2003 7:05 PM

the first movie was fantastic and was full of open ideas and caused you to think about things.
the next movie was a washed out version of the first and the third was predictable and boring

kris » 9 November, 2003 11:08 AM

I loved the first two movies, and most of the third. What I hated was the ending. Why is it that more and more films these days seem to blur the good old story of good vs evil and good being totallyh victorius in the end.

I cannot believe that this is the end of The Matrix however, and suspect that we will be hit with a fourth. There are two many unanswered questions.

Of course the mysterious brothers who made all this must be laughing- only they know exactly what philosophy they were peddling. It clearly wasn't a straightforward Christian one however.

Adrian Warnock » 10 November, 2003 8:27 AM

western evangelical lenses? so sick of your feeble insults. Yes, i'M A CHRISTIAN. And no I don't fit your mold.

David » 12 November, 2003 9:00 AM

At the end did anyone notice the position Neo's body was in? It looked to me like Christ on the cross. Which finished with Neo going into the "light", which for me implied a heaven.

John » 21 November, 2003 1:24 PM

I thought the first movie had an interesting perpective on life and made you think. The last got very confusing in its message and moved away from the simple idea of the first Matrix movie. All the movies keep the theme of choice being the highest denominator. Although love goes through all the movies, this is just good movie making and one of the basics in writing plots and keeping an audience connected to the characters.

What I would like to know is what the sign above the kitchen door said? It looked latin and it was only briefly shown. This in the Matrix 3 and Neo asks who controls it or what is the source? She points to the sign above the kitchen.

Any Religion has a source. Christian the source is GOD, Hindu has its gods as creator or source, and Science has its source; The Spontaneous combustion in a sea of ammonia.

Whether the writers were trying to communicate somthing myth/religion, or just telling an interesting story I can't really say. But I could not get what they were trying to say in the last Matrix 3. It also moved out of a strict Sci-Fi movie into Fantasy.

William

william » 22 November, 2003 8:36 PM

I thought the first movie had an interesting perpective on life and made you think. The last got very confusing in its message and moved away from the simple idea of the first Matrix movie. All the movies keep the theme of choice being the highest denominator. Although love goes through all the movies, this is just good movie making and one of the basics in writing plots and keeping an audience connected to the characters.

What I would like to know is what the sign above the kitchen door said? It looked latin and it was only briefly shown. This in the Matrix 3 and Neo asks who controls it or what is the source? She points to the sign above the kitchen.

Any Religion has a source. Christian the source is GOD, Hindu has its gods as creator or source, and Science has its source; The Spontaneous combustion in a sea of ammonia.

Whether the writers were trying to communicate somthing myth/religion, or just telling an interesting story I can't really say. But I could not get what they were trying to say in the last Matrix 3. It also moved out of a strict Sci-Fi movie into Fantasy.

William

william » 22 November, 2003 8:37 PM

I thought the first movie had an interesting perpective on life and made you think. The last got very confusing in its message and moved away from the simple idea of the first Matrix movie. All the movies keep the theme of choice being the highest denominator. Although love goes through all the movies, this is just good movie making and one of the basics in writing plots and keeping an audience connected to the characters.

What I would like to know is what the sign above the kitchen door said? It looked latin and it was only briefly shown. This in the Matrix 3 and Neo asks who controls it or what is the source? She points to the sign above the kitchen.

Any Religion has a source. Christian the source is GOD, Hindu has its gods as creator or source, and Science has its source; The Spontaneous combustion in a sea of ammonia.

Whether the writers were trying to communicate somthing myth/religion, or just telling an interesting story I can't really say. But I could not get what they were trying to say in the last Matrix 3. It also moved out of a strict Sci-Fi movie into Fantasy.

William

william » 22 November, 2003 8:37 PM

Neo (new) is the opposite (light) force to Smiths Darkness. In Tao, both have to exist to persist. When Neo seeks to 'resist' Smith, Violence occurs. When Neo finally discovers his Tao, (passivity) then Smith is defeated and the movie ends in peace and harmony.

In order to elimate Darkness (Smith), Neo must allow himself to be eliminated. This is how the trilogy ends.

The machines are the Yang to the humans Yin. They cannot survive without each other, and they cannot co-exist in harmony with each other...

Does that sound Christian?? Not in respect to eternal significance.

Many false philosophies like Taoism can only be explained in created myth and story, and never be taught or understood as an objective language-oriented historical revelation like christianity. Hence, the need to 'create' the matrix myth.

Christianity is taught in space-time historical stories. No-myth. Hence the make-believe, the fairy-tale, the mythologies of false religions. These are romantic fantasies, never seen in reality.

But what God has created is real.

John Stewart
(Christian-Songwriter)

John Stewart » 1 December, 2003 12:19 AM

the funniest thing about the matrix is its whatever you really want it to be i personaly like to take things at face value sometimes with the matrix i see it as a metaphor a mirror so to speak of our lives the matrix is all around us and it will find you if you want it too.

neoashton » 16 December, 2003 5:02 AM

For me, the first matrix movie was the best one. You could see clearly that they really thought of the story.
But the second movie, and especially the third is all about money, action, blablabla. Even the conversation between neo and the architect doesn't make any sense and really ruines the great story they gave us with the first film.
As Jake Horsley quotes in his book 'the matrix warrior, being the one'. It looks like the matrix and his agents (Joel Silver and the production studio) kind of hold back the truth and gave the peeps what they wanted: violence and useless action that doesn't support the truth and thus holds back the real truth!

But still, kick ass movies :D

Al » 23 May, 2004 2:44 AM

Tired of the same old religion?

Christianity too repressed? Buddhism too boring? Islam too violent? Scientology too weird?

Try Matrixism!

Believe it or not some people have started a new religion based on the Matrix. It's called Matrixism details of which can be seen on its web site at matrixism.org or matrixism.com

Dave X » 3 November, 2004 12:15 PM

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