This Shakespeare quote should help to make clear what this all has to do with Christianity: in Dickerson and O'Hara's words, fantasy and Christianity "both affirm the existence of the supernatural and of moral freedom, both affirm the importance of our choices, both encourage escape from materialist determination, and both find a materialist worldview to be insufficient."

Fantasy is not in and of itself Christian – not by any stretch of the imagination - but it does lend itself to Christian readings and Christian influences, both conscious and unconscious. Terry Scott Taylor once penned a song where he laments that he is "longing for a land not assigned to me by birth." This is a longing that many of us Christians have for the new heaven and the new earth. It only makes sense to have an inclination to meet that desire through the fantastic and mythic.

Like I said, this was a book I wanted to write, but I'm glad that someone else beat me to the punch. It hits on all those things that make me a lover of the fantastic while at the same time pushing me to think and reconsider some of my assumptions about what makes for "good" fantasy.

 © 2006 Infuze Magazine.  All rights reserved.  Used with permission. 


Original publication date: November 21, 2006