Thought I'd search through my research notes form writing the guide and give Blog readers an idea of "What is the Da Vinci Code".
The Da Vinci Code is written in the context of an unorthodox view – considered heretical by orthodox believers – of the death and resurrection of Jesus and the role played in his life and mission by Mary Magdalene.
In the context of the novel, the Church is seen as responsible for sidelining the true message of Christ and the true facts of his life and supporting instead the Pauline version which was reinforced in 325 AD by the Council of Nicaea, at which time certain dogmas were laid down as ‘fact’. Some of these ‘facts’ have been enlarged on or even omitted with the passing of the centuries.
The author uses Leonardo da Vinci’s painting of The Last Supper to reinforce this context.
In broad terms, he presents the view that:
– Mary Magdalene was the wife of Jesus and the mother of his children.
– Mary’s womb was the Holy Grail, the Holy Vessel which carried the bloodline of Jesus. All other descriptions of the legendary Holy Grail are symbolic.
– The bloodline was later carried forward in the Merovingian line of kings, and descendants are alive today.
– Jesus is not seen as divine in the sense of being the actual immaculately conceived Son of God, but rather as having the divine spark to be found in all human beings, although in larger measure. He is seen as the bringer of a divine message that enables people to achieve communion with God as he is perceived in many different ways by people on a spiritual path.
– Da Vinci’s painting of The Last Supper is seen as an encoded message of the real Messianic story.
– The Council of Nicaea, organised by the Emperor Constantine in 325 AD, is seen as orchestrated by Constantine for his own political ends. In the resulting Church dogma, the real relationship between Jesus and Mary Magdalene is seen as being finally removed from orthodox Christian records.
– The ‘truth’ about Jesus and Mary Magdalene has – according to the novel – been kept alive by a secret society named the Priory of Sion, and a powerful orthodox Catholic order, the Opus Dei is depicted as trying to ensure that this ‘truth’ never emerges.
Dan Brown leans on information gained from non-fiction books like Holy Blood, Holy Grail by Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln and on what is presented as confirmation by the Nag Hammadi Codices, but also on reports, opinions and rumours which have emerged in a steady stream from the first century, gathering momentum after Nicaea. Many of these ‘heresies’ and enquiries were written by serious thinkers.
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