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  #11  
Old 04-06-2008, 03:15 PM
Connie
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I read a few of Austen's books years ago and have enjoyed the movies made from them, quite a few versions of some of them actually. Austen was the daughter of an English clergyman who never married and died in her forties, and it's highly unlikely there was any immorality in her life. But immorality wasn't unknown in her circle and in Pride and Prejudice the youngest daughter runs off with an army man and lives with him for a while before family come to force him to marry her.

I'm surprised to hear the gospel was given in one of her books. My impression was that religion is a part of the scenery in Austen's books and apparently in her own life, but not a living reality. It was a source of moral perspective, and she explores moral questions in great detail, at least in relation to social issues, but as far as I can tell religion is taken for granted in a way that leaves true salvation out of it. Clergymen were appointed to their positions for social and financial reasons, not Christian reasons, and in at least two of her books they are silly vain men, hardly Christians.
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  #12  
Old 04-06-2008, 03:23 PM
jerry
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I would have to check to see which book of hers I have at home. Perhaps the Gospel was presented enough in her time that she was able to repeat it without necessarily believing it herself. It is like the popular author John Grisham - he is quite ecumenical and pretty watered down on some Bible issues - YET even he presented the Gospel in one of his books clearly (The Chamber - which was a shocker to me). He had a preacher or pastor in his novel present the need for repentance and belief in the death, burial and resurrection of Christ for salvation to a death row inmate. Was it enough for a reader to get saved through reading that book? I can't remember that - but I do remember the way the story was related, the character in the story was given the Gospel and trusted in Christ alone for salvation.
  #13  
Old 04-06-2008, 04:45 PM
Connie
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I love folk dance and folk singing, and often look it up at You Tube so I thought I'd contribute to this thread. Here are a few links I collected.

I think it's noteworthy that the costumes worn in all the cultures for these dances are very modest. Colorful and modest, for both sexes. No spandex here, no cleavage, in fact very little skin. And the dances are modest too, mostly foot work, little body contact, often an exhibition of physical strength -- and interestingly, many of them are all men. These are mostly done by official dance troupes now but they come out of genuine local traditions.

A short snippet of Greek dance to the theme from “Zorba the Greek”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wjcsE...eature=related

Folk dance from Thessalia (which I'm assuming is the location of the original Thessalonian church, but I'm not sure)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Zs33...eature=related

Thracian dance (between Greece and Bulgaria)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mJAoM...eature=related

Armenian dance:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4aEeD...eature=related

Bulgarian dance is quite similar:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kXFj7...eature=related

Romanian dance sometimes partners men and women:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NGiFbGwRfY0

Ukrainian Cossack dance – seems to be completely a masculine thing:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zmskm...eature=related

Mongolian – getting into some Chinese feeling:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E4uhS...eature=related

There are also Norwegian, English, Italian, French, Polish, German, Irish and no doubt other folk dances, but the pictures aren’t very good on some.

European dances at least come out of a Christianized culture. I wonder what kind of dancing they did before Christianity took over in Europe. I did check out a few nonChristian cultures -- African, American Indian, Polynesian, Arabian, Hindu -- and it seems many of the dances are shamanistic, with the intent of contacting demon spirits, or seductive, fertility type dances or something along those lines. Dances to the local gods at least. I didn't watch a lot so I may be misjudging, but my quick impression is that overall the movements are more sensuous, the skin is more bare (not always), and there's a lot of drumming.

Anyway, dance seems to be a very natural human expression, and I don't see any reason it can't be God-honoring. Unfortunately most of it isn't any more. Dancing with the Stars? The fewer clothes and the more suggestive movements the "better" it is it seems. Even ballet shows way too much body. I don't understand why either, since it's obviously not necessary to even the most strenuous acrobatic movements, as many of the folk dances show, where very loose clothing is worn.
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Old 04-06-2008, 04:47 PM
Connie
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Yes, I'd like to know which of her books gives the gospel. You could be right, I'm very curious now. I'd heard Grisham's books may give the gospel. Sure, it's great if somebody can get the gospel from a popular novel. God can reach down to anybody in a million different ways.
  #15  
Old 04-06-2008, 05:06 PM
jerry
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It was just the one Grisham novel. He is getting more and more corrupt in his material - so I doubt if he would ever include the Gospel in any later ones. I have received a recent news article where he stated he does not accept/believe in a literal view of the Bible.
  #16  
Old 04-06-2008, 06:24 PM
Connie
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Too bad about Grisham, I don't read his books but it was nice to think there is someone out there including the gospel in his novels.
  #17  
Old 04-06-2008, 11:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Connie View Post
I did check out a few nonChristian cultures -- African, American Indian, Polynesian, Arabian, Hindu -- and it seems many of the dances are shamanistic, with the intent of contacting demon spirits, or seductive, fertility type dances or something along those lines. Dances to the local gods at least. I didn't watch a lot so I may be misjudging, but my quick impression is that overall the movements are more sensuous, the skin is more bare (not always), and there's a lot of drumming.

Anyway, dance seems to be a very natural human expression, and I don't see any reason it can't be God-honoring. Unfortunately most of it isn't any more. Dancing with the Stars? The fewer clothes and the more suggestive movements the "better" it is it seems. Even ballet shows way too much body. I don't understand why either, since it's obviously not necessary to even the most strenuous acrobatic movements, as many of the folk dances show, where very loose clothing is worn.
I'm busy now, but I'd like to say thanks to your post, Connie! These are some reasons why I think some Christian schools do not promote such activity.
  #18  
Old 04-07-2008, 12:35 PM
Connie
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Hi Biblestudent,
When you do get back, please explain what they do teach at Bible school, ANY kind of dancing? Music? What do you think of the European dances I think are done decently, modestly etc.? Certainly most other folk dancing around the world has too much baggage from the fallen nature and the prince of this world for Christians to venture into. I would think American square dancing should be OK. The minuet dancing seen in Jane Austen movies is nice, too, as someone here suggested, except we could do with less skin showing above the dress I suppose.

Last edited by Connie; 04-07-2008 at 12:38 PM.
  #19  
Old 04-08-2008, 07:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Connie View Post
Hi Biblestudent,
When you do get back, please explain what they do teach at Bible school, ANY kind of dancing? Music? What do you think of the European dances I think are done decently, modestly etc.? Certainly most other folk dancing around the world has too much baggage from the fallen nature and the prince of this world for Christians to venture into. I would think American square dancing should be OK. The minuet dancing seen in Jane Austen movies is nice, too, as someone here suggested, except we could do with less skin showing above the dress I suppose.
Hi, Connie! Just a short reply to one of your questions: no dancing taught in our Bible school. just folk dancing introduced in a Christian high school. Also only hymns & church music (conservative) in the Bible school. thanks!
 

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