Count Dracula: A Christological analysis of Bram Stoker’s vampire

Dracula and his bride

Count Dracula and his bride

In Bram Stoker’s Dracula (I will be using the Dracula (Penguin Popular Classics) edition in my quotes), the Count is portrayed as possessing supernatural powers which, if we examine closely, are the antithesis of the salvation wrought by Christ on the Cross:

Read more at Monk’s Hobbit: Count Dracula: A Christological analysis of Bram Stoker’s vampire


Can we study astronomy, charms, dark arts, flying, herbology, history of magic, potions, and transfiguration?

This class is boring. This class is boring. Can we study astronomy, charms, dark arts, flying, herbology, history of magic, potions, and transfiguration?

This class is boring. Can we study astronomy, charms, dark arts, flying, herbology, history of magic, potions, and transfiguration?

Questions from a Harry Potter Fan (Harry Potter flows in my blood–Facebook page)

This class is boring. Can we learn about astronomy, charms, dark arts, defense against the dark arts, flying, herbology, history of magic, potions and transfiguration?

Read more at Monk’s Hobbit

World beyond the womb: before birth and after death

A small fetus on the womb

A small fetus on the womb

For the fetus, the world is the womb–a dark place, but full of sounds with time counted by his mother’s heartbeat: rub-dub, rub-dub, rub-dub.  And there are voices:

“Ah, that’s a voice of someone who encloses me, who bears me, who feeds me, who loves me.  If she is sad, I am also sad.  If she is happy, I am also happy.  If she does not want me and wants to abort me, I can feel it, and I brace myself and hold on to whatever I can grasp for dear life.

“Ah, that’s the voice of someone who is distinct from she-who-is-my-world.  But his voice soothes and strengthens me, because I can feel that she-who-is-my-world is also strengthened.  When he touches my world, the sound is amplified by the waters, and each rhythmic pattern gives me joy.

“Someday, I may see them face-to-face.  But I don’t know what seeing is; I only know that they exist because I hear them.   To hear is to believe.

After 9 months, the fetus leaves the womb–the world that he ever knew.  This leaving is a form of death, but a death that leads to a new life. The new world is far different from what he can ever imagine, for now he has acquired the use of his other sense: the sense of sight.  If the baby can speak of the glorious sights, he will say:

“All things bright and beautiful.  All creatures great and small.  All things wise and wonderful.  The Lord God made them all.”

As Scripture says: “Out of the mouths of infants and nurslings you have brought forth praise’?” (Mt 21:16).

From the world of the womb, man is brought forth to the world of the earth, grass, sun, stars, clouds, water, and air.  Man is still enclosed in a womb layered into spheres: biosphere, hydrosphere, atmosphere, ionosphere, magnetosphere, plasmasphere, heliosphere, and the spheres of stars and galaxies.  Atheists may say that this is the only world that we have; but our Faith says that there is a world beyond–beyond the farthest stars visible to the most powerful telescopes, before the beginning of time.  In that world, there is Someone-Who-Loves-Us, because He was revealed to us by His Voice, His Word, His Son Who became Flesh like one of us–Jesus Christ.  Christ, God the Son, reveals God the Father.  As Christ said to Philip:

“Have I been with you for so long a time and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?10Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on my own. The Father who dwells in me is doing his works.11Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me, or else, believe because of the works themselves.” (Jn 14:9-11)

It is difficult to imagine what would life be in the other world and what would our resurrected bodies look like.  St. Paul describes it best:

“So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown corruptible; it is raised incorruptible.43It is sown dishonorable; it is raised glorious. It is sown weak; it is raised powerful. 44It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual one.”

But this we know: in heaven we shall see God face-to-face in a beatific vision.

“I saw no temple in the city, for its temple is the Lord God almighty and the Lamb. 23* The city had no need of sun or moon to shine on it,o for the glory of God gave it light, and its lamp was the Lamb.”  (Rv 21:22-23)

And we shall be full of happiness, for what we believed from His Word is true: indeed, we have a Father in heaven–that other world–and so we have the courage to say as adopted sons, “Abba, Father!”


Catholic movie review: Prometheus and the Christian God

Prometheus movie

Prometheus movie

Prometheus provides an alternative mythology to Genesis.  And there are some references to Christian theology.  Notice the Christmas tree and the Crucifix.  And the Crucifix is seen again and again in the movie as a sign of faith or its loss.

Let us focus on Prometheus and Christ.  Prometheus gave up his life so that the evolution of man can start.  Christ, on the other hand, gave up his life to save mankind from sin, and on the side of Christ flowed the water of life and his life-giving blood.  Prometheus  (it need not be the same person)  slept in a tomb and was resurrected from sleep by the humans.  Christ was buried in a tomb and rose from the dead by his own power.  Prometheus has human DNA.  And so is Christ.  But the similarities ends here.

Even though the whole ship is filled with runes of the ancient tongue, Prometheus can’t talk.  And he refused to talk to reveal himself.  He could have said, “Why did you open the Stargate?” Or “Remove the sandals from your feet because the place you are standing is holy.”  The humans attempted to communicate with him, but he just killed them.  That was disappointing: a god who can’t reveal himself.  Just like the idols of Israel: they have mouths but do not speak.  But the Christian God reveals Himself: “I AM WHO I AM”.  He gave the Ten Commandments.  He sends prophets who proclaim: “This is the word of the Lord!”  And in the fullness of time He sent His Son, Jesus Christ, the Word Made Flesh.

God is our Father.  If God is an alien, then the bond uniting the whole human family breaks down.  Heaven becomes harsh inhospitable planet for the human crew that seeks to finally meet its creator.  Sexual intercourse becomes sterile.  The child in the womb becomes an alien that should be aborted.  The only way to conceive a new life is to destroy the old one.  And even in human relationships,  father becomes emotionally distant from his daughter, the automaton becomes valued as a son, and compassion is dulled even in sight of a bloodied and suffering woman.

But God is a loving Father and that is what the Parable of the Prodigal Son teaches us.  Jesus promised us that He will prepare a place for us in heaven.  And in heaven, God awaits for the homecoming of his beloved sons and daughters.  And when He sees us from a distance, He will run towards us, and embraces us as His long lost children.  He will give us robes to wear, put rings in our fingers, put sandals on our feet, and announce a feast. As Jesus promised, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents.  A society built on the vision of God as a Father results to families and communities bound by love.  The swords will be beat into plowshares.  The lion will lie down with a lamb.  And death would lose its sting: it would be true immortality when the soul reunites with the body in the Resurrection of the Dead.

Prometheus is a bleak movie for Atheistic Materialism and Scientific Darwinism.  Is Prometheus the God atheists and Darwinists longed for?  David, the android, says it best:

David: Why do you think your people made me.

Charlie Holloway: We made ya ’cause we could.

David: Can you imagine how disappointing it would be for you to hear the same thing from your creator?

Like David, humanity without God will be humans without souls.  And even if humans attain eternal life, it would be one long and dreary life of a disembodied head watching the sands and stars.

Transforming Earth Hour as the Hour of Creation

If you are supporting Earth Hour, do it for a more edifying purpose: gather the family members, turn off the electric lights, light the candles, and pray the Holy Rosary. Then read the first chapter of the Book of Genesis:

“In the beginning, when God created the heavens and the earth— 2* and the earth was without form or shape, with darkness over the abyss and a mighty wind sweeping over the waters—b 3Then God said: Let there be light, and there was light.c 4God saw that the light was good. God then separated the light from the darkness. 5God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” Evening came, and morning followed—the first day….*”

The Earth Hour becomes the Hour of Creation. The Church for centuries has adopted pagan practices but baptizing them with Christian meaning, in the same way as the Church accepts Gentiles and baptizes them as Christians. We can adopt the secular practice of the Earth Hour and turn it into a Christian practice. The Book of Genesis is the First Reading in the Easter celebration, that is why before Easter Sunday, it is Black Saturday, and on Easter Eve mass, the Church is dark, to symbolize the darkness of sin that covers the entire world.

Then read the Prologue of John in Chapter 1:

“In the beginning* was the Word,
and the Word was with God,
and the Word was God.a
2He was in the beginning with God.
3* All things came to be through him,
and without him nothing came to be.b
What came to be 4through him was life,
and this life was the light of the human race;c
5* the light shines in the darkness,d
and the darkness has not overcome it….”

The Earth Hour becomes the Hour of Creation, as Sunday, through the Resurrection of Christ, became the day of the New Creation; the Hour of the New Creation is better designated to the first hour of Easter Sunday. The light of Christ shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it. You see this in the seal of Ateneo de Manila University and Manila Observatory. The light of the world is not the sun but IHS, Christ. It is the Mystery of Incarnation. Gazing at the whole world–the Earth–is one of the spiritual exercises of St. Ignatius: to see the world as the Holy Trinity sees it. That is why, the Jesuits produced the greatest geographers like Mateo Ricci, because geography is an aid to the Spiritual Exercises. The Holy Trinity sees the world of men engulfed by sin. And so the Holy Trinity decides to send the Second Person of the Trinity, God the Son, who became flesh in the Person of Christ.

These prayers, readings, and meditations would fill a whole hour. Many indulgences can be obtained here from the praying of the rosary, the 30-minute reading and meditation of the scripture–and more if done in front of the blessed Sacrament in a Holy Hour.

A blessed Hour of Creation to all.