Tuesday, November 15

Christian Author Tackles Moral Tale Set On Ethically Turbulent Seas: A Review Of The Mind Siege Project By Tim LaHaye

In proclaiming truth, Christian apologist Ravi Zacharias has suggested that the principles and concepts postulated on the level of more formalized expressions of thought must often be exhibited in a more literary or artistic manner in order to permeate the broader popular culture. Tim LaHaye attempts to accomplish this by taking the ideas he first elaborated in Mind Siege: The Battle For Truth and translating them into the novel The Mind Siege Project.

In The Mind Siege Project, a group of high school social studies students set on a boat trip on the Chesapeake Bay for a lesson in diversity and moral relativism. The class ends up learning that these ideas have dire consequences not considered in the more sedate setting of academic discussion.

Readers will be both amused and irritated at the hypocritical nature of contemporary understandings of tolerance as exposed by LaHaye and coauthor Bob Demoss. The shortcomings of this widespread ideology are laid bare in the group sessions where the facilitator sponsoring the field trip in the name of diversity upholds the rights of the individual when it comes to abortion but flat-out tells a student whose missionary parents were murdered overseas that they more or less got what they deserved.

The incoherence of the relativistic lifestyle is further brought home when a student is critically injured when she decides she is her own determinant of right and wrong by violating specific rules of safety set down ironically by the very teacher postulating rules do not exist.

Unlike LaHaye's other literary undertakings such as Left Behind that deal with grand cosmic events pertaining to the end of the world over which the average person has little impact whatsoever one way or the other, The Mind Siege Project provides insight into the many mindsets and perspectives one is likely to encounter in an academic setting or the workplace. Furthermore, LaHaye and Demoss are to be commended for their sympathetic portrayal of the spiritual struggle the Christian faces in walking the line between desiring the acceptance of one's peers and the obligation to take a stand for the Lord without regard for the impact upon one's own popularity for doing so.

However, the authors do go overboard in this tale of adventure set on the high seas in insinuating it is somehow a Christian's obligation to donate bodily organs to people little more than strangers or at best mere acquaintances. Such is not really a moral claim one can propagate as an ethical imperative to impose upon the remainder of the Christian community unless one has, shall we say, already given of themselves in this manner. How many kidneys have you given away, Dr. LaHaye?

From The Mind Siege Project, readers will take away the lesson that not everyone is always as they appear to be and that it's not always the quiet people you have to be leery of.

Copyright 2005 by Frederick Meekins