Posted by: Chelsea Novak | February 26, 2004

Everyone’s up with “The Passion”

Being a) an atheist and b) not a fan of violence it’s safe to say that unless my life depends on it I will be passing on viewing what is being touted as “The Biggest Movie Ever.” I know there are people in my circle o’ friends that do not share my atheism and as such I will keep my reasons for it to myself. I will say this though. The first word that comes to my mind when I think about relgion (christian or not) is “puzzled.” It all leaves me puzzled.

But I know for believers of the Christian faith, this movie could be a big deal. In fact judging by what I’ve read about it, the film would be horror in the truest sense of the word. And while I do not share their beliefs I do feel sympathy for them and feel a pang of sadness at the thought of how crushing it would be to watch somone, divine or not, be ritualistically tourtured and killed on screen in front of them. I have an inkling of how that will feel.

When I was studying art in Italy I saw a painting that took my breath away and truly horrified me. Whether or not The Crucifixion happened, it still shook me. It still leaves me speechless. I’d never truly understood what being strung up on a cross meant until I saw Tintoretto’s Crucifixion in the Sala dell’Albergo (Hall of the Hostel) in the Scuola di San Rocco, in Venice. It was painted in 1565. Tintoretto was a very devout man and excelled at converying emotions through his work. It may not look like much on your computer screen, but in real life, in all its horror, it can make even a non-believer cry.



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