Last Thursday the Evil Teen decided that she wanted to watch the premier of Beauty & The Beast, which was a Disney live adaptation of its famous animated classic.
The movie had a boost of popularity thanks to a round of protest by the National Council of Churches (NCC), who had protested the movie having a “Gay Moment.” I posted something to the effect that the obsession with “Gay Moments” and “Gay Agenda’s” was a sign that Singapore has a large population of repressed homosexuals who hate themselves for being gay and therefore become extremely homophobic. My comments drew a few laughs but offended a friend of mine who admitted to being an “ex-homosexual.”
With this bit of background in mind, I went to see movie and true enough, I actually noticed the “gay moment” when one of the characters seemed to have an unhealthy devotion of his more outgoing male friend.
While, this was probably a “Gay Moment” (which someone else told me I only noticed because I was psychologically conditioned to look out for it), no rational person can say that it “promoted” the “homosexual lifestyle.” If anything, it should have been the “sensitive” homosexuals protesting about the stereotyping of the “LGBT” community as being effeminate and a group deserving of ridicule.
What’s even more interesting about the movie was the fact that it was filled with what one can call good Christian values. The so called “Gay Moment” was such a minor part to a film that was the living embodiment of Christian teaching.
The premise of the story was simple. A handsome and wealthy prince who screwed his people would not give shelter and food to an old, ugly hag who offered the one thing she had – a rose. Feeding the poor and giving shelter to the needy is right at the heart of Christian teaching. Christ tells us the parable of the widow’s mite – saying that God valued a single coin donated by an old widow than the vast riches donated by the wealthy. The teaching is simple – God doesn’t value the absolute amount but what you give from your heart.
The Prince finds damnation when he’s turned into a Beast. It’s always winter wherever he is and his only companions are his possessions (the servants got turned into possessions). The moral of this story is obvious – wealth can be a curse if all you have are possessions. When you lack love, you realise that having a lot of things is meaningless.
In the end, there is redemption. The Beast becomes tender and learns to love when he meets our heroine, Bell. This feisty young girl is cowed by his hideous appearance and sacrifices herself so that her father can have his freedom. In the end the Beast accepts that part of loving someone is learning to let them go. He recognizes that he needs to let Bell go to her father when he sees how much it torments her that she’s not able to be with her father in his hour of need. He lets her go with the full knowledge that she may never come back to him and he’ll be damned to live out his days as a Beast and even more friendless than when he was before (the talking objects become inanimate ones if he’s damned to be live out his days as a beast).
What is more Christian than that? Doesn’t the Bible say, “Man hath no greater love than he who would lay down his life for his fellow man.” This is what the Beast risk when he lets her go. He has learnt to love something greater than himself.
Perhaps the only thing more Christian than learning to sacrifice for the one you love but showing love and mercy to someone who not only hates you, but tries to do you harm. He practically allows “Gaston” the show’s knave to murder him, until Bell comes back and he fights back. Then, at the point when he’s in the position to deliver Gaston’s just deserts, he shows mercy and allows him to live.
Again, Christ is very specific on this. In both the Gospels of Matthew and Luke, he tells people to “love your enemies as yourself,” to “bless those who curse you.” In that very moment of giving mercy to the man who would destroy him (Christ behavior), the Beast becomes more human than the entire village of people who followed Gaston on their quest to murder the Beast because ….well that’s what Gaston told them.
It’s funny how the National Council of Churches never wanted to talk about Christian values like mercy and love. Somehow an insignificant moment of what they deemed unnatural was more important than the overwhelming theme of giving undeserving love and mercy. How funny that Christ who said far more about sheltering the poor and blessing those who sought to do you harm was something that the churches didn’t want to talk about.
What a shame that our men of God don’t want to talk about love and compassion when these are central of God’s teachings.