Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Ah, Those Blasphemers!

I had to think of how to work them in, for blasphemy in the abstract is a little hard for a modern audience to swallow. So I started a thread on The Other Dark Place (http://www.theotherdarkplace.com/mboard/), home of constant snark and occasional brilliance, and got some good feedback. Especially useful was the suggestion of Karen Koehler (http://khpindustries.com/hp_wordpress/), that the sin should be personal - i.e. even if many of us don't think the actual name of God, or the actual presence of an icon or communion wafer are sacred per se, if someone holds those things sacred, and someone comes along and disrespects them, I think any civilized person would find that to be objectionable. So that part worked nice.

But as I'm going, I'm trying to work in more of Dante's imagery. One of the things he really likes for that circle is sterility (snow made of fire instead of water, tears that scald insted of wash, people who teach but cannot follow their own teaching [Dante meets a beloved teacher there in a very heartbreaking scene]). So I think to have the people he meets in my version in a cart pulled...by mules! Because mules are sterile! And the blasphemer says that God is shit! And as if on cue, one of the mules shits! So the blasphemer can fling the poo (literally) at the religious symbol!

I love it when things work like that! It's like some avalanche of goodness!

And ZOMG - as the blasphemer is flinging poo, she's reciting the Nicene creed, except everywhere there's the word "God" she says "shit"! Now that's some blasphemy! (Plus note the gender - of course when I first thought of the scene, I had the man as the blasphemer and the weak and Christly woman as the pious one - but where's the fun in that?!)


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