I think the best way to take on the question above is to examine stories. Stories are our best history books. They can pull you into understanding someone else better then anything else. This is why we love television, specifically anime so much. We want to understand someone else so we can understand ourselves.
But human beings have limited minds. We can only understand so much, express so much, feel so much. We’re not God so we’re not limitless in our abilities. There are many things in this world our brains are just not made to understand. Thus, there are a limited amount of themes we can use in our stories. Naturally things will get recycled. That’s why we have genres of stories, and why some formulas are extraordinarily successful.
“History merely repeats itself. It has all been done before. Nothing under the sun is truly new.” Ecclesiastes 1:9
Everything we write about has to come from somewhere. There is hardly anything completely unique or individual anymore. So, there has to be some source on this earth that gives us the inspiration for all our stories. The great debate is where the inspiration comes from. Who started it all? What was the first spark in the fire of colorful stories and expressions we have now?
Over the years, there has been much speculation and grand thinking. Still others settle with, “Oh what a lovely coincidence this all is! Isn’t it great how we’re all connected?”
I have a different opinion. I believe that the first spark came from the one who created everything.
Everything we know comes from God. It’s a chain reaction, he creates the world, thoughts, feelings, identity, that we then take and turn into epic stories. When we write, it’s like we’re reflecting who God is. No matter what we write, some part of it is from the Lord because he is the one who created us. Now, stories can have Christian themes and thus be labeled Christian, but this article wants to tackle so much more then that.
First off, to us, Christianity is not a religion. It’s our life, the explanation to everything we know. God gives us reason behind everything we do, and everything that happens. We believe that God is everywhere and that he deeply cares about every single person. Since our worldview is that God is apart of everything, then in a way, everything is “Christian.”
But “Christian” is such a weird word. It can mean anything really now a days. Some people say the definition of something “Christian” can only belong for a human being who can make a conscious decision to be aware of who God is. Songs, books, TV, and such cannot be “Christian” because it doesn’t have a mind to choose to follow Jesus. The stories we write (including other media anything creative that expresses some sort of idea of “being”) are thus in the same category as all the other stories. It’s just that, a story that might be a little more accurate in representing who God is. But that doesn’t mean “secular” stories cannot do the same. In fact, I believe every single story represents some part of God, because every single story has some truth in it.
Our God is a good God. He is the only God in all religions of the world that came down to us humans were we were in our suffering and suffered with us. All other religions are such that man has to work towards God. But the true God works towards being with us. You might be thinking, my life sucks. God obviously doesn’t care about me. Well, have you ever tried to reach out for him or ask him for help?
I blog because I can find God in anime easily. Anime may have a bad rap in the Christian world, but Christians just don’t want to give it a try and look for themselves! They don’t know what they’re missing out! Anime is a very interesting representation of God because it seams so far away from him. But anime if often the medium that most cries out what it means to be alive. It screams for a sense of purpose and meaning. It’s looking for God, but it just hasn’t quite found it yet. Anime represents humanity striving for something better. It’s good because we can relate to it on such deep levels. The only thing is, the answer at the end of the show isn’t satisfying. The question remains unanswered in a tragic way that seams appealing to some people. (This includes me. I love tragedy. It shows me how we always fall short of God and need him.)
Academics love the fact that the greatest answers of all time “can’t” have an answer. Scholars refuse to believe there can be one answer to everything. With God, everything just makes sense. My world works the way it should when I’m in a relationship with God. It’s a feeling I can’t quite describe.
Anime can never give you the correct answer you’re looking for, but it can point you in the right direction. Your soul can search alongside these stories for truth, but you’ll never quite get there. So what can satisfy our souls? Many take their anime lives too seriously looking for answers that aren’t there. There is only once place, one story that can satisfy our hunger. It’s the story of the God who came to suffer humanity with us. He’s the obvious answer that no one seams to want to admit.
Where do you find the one story that makes sense of all the others? You just need one spark of inspiration. Ask out loud, God help my world make sense to me! Show me how you fit into everything! I’m choosing to rely on you for the answer to this question. God will come to you and transform the way you see everything. It’s a beautiful experience that makes for the best story, but a better anime.