Liam Neeson, who supplies the voice of Aslan in the Narnia movies, was quoted saying,
“Aslan symbolises a Christlike figure, but he also symbolises for me Mohammed, Buddha and all the great spiritual leaders and prophets over the centuries,” . “That’s who Aslan stands for as well as a mentor figure for kids – that’s what he means for me.”
Dear Mr. Neeson,
I would like to start by giving you the benefit of the doubt. I would love to start a tirade of how your statements highlight just how individualized our society is. How everyone thinks that everything is about them. Because… as much as we want it to be… it’s not.
I would like to to start by giving you the benefit of the doubt. Did you know Mr. Lewis? Did you sit down and chat with him about what he meant by the character of Aslan? Have you read his notes? Have you read those who have written commentaries? If not, I can understand the confusion… so let me set you straight. Aslan is Jesus in these books. He is not Mohammed or Buhdda or a good mentor. Mr. Lewis was quite clear in his intentions when writing the Chronicles of Narnia…. The author, C. S. Lewis, described Aslan as an alternative version of Christ that is, as the form in which Christ might have appeared in a fantasy world.
If the words of Mr. Lewis are not clear enough, let me ask you a few questions that might clear the matter up… Was Mohammed ever without sin, but willingly died in the place of another only to later raise from the dead like Aslan did in the case of Edmund in the Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (and as Jesus did in the case of all of us on the cross)? Was Buhdda ever credited with changing a person in a way that person could not do himself like Aslan did with Eustace in The Voyage of the Dawntreader (and as Jesus does for us as illustrated in 2 Corinthians 5:17)? Did your favorite, most powerful mentor when you were young create a world with just the words of his mouth as Aslan did in The Magician’s Nephew (and as Jesus did in Genesis, the first book of the Bible)?
Don’t worry… I already know the answers to these questions. Mr. Neeson, I am not meaning to disrespect your intelligence. I understand the world we live in. Postmodernism and Political Correctness has crippled us and made people afraid to believe in something whole- heartedly and defend it with their lives. We are terrified of offending someone and so we must make blanket statements to include everyone. But the fact of the matter is… C.S. Lewis wrote the Chronicles of Narnia and at the very least, it is incredible disrespectful to him to alter his intentions in creating the characters.
Quite honestly… I am not so much concerned about Aslan’s reputation as I am that of Christ. And to be quite honest again… I am not that concerned about Jesus because he knows who he is and false statements made by people do not change that. I am truly concerned about the confusion that has been created by post-modernism that leads us to believe that we are all going to heaven or paradise… we just have to find our own path to get there. Because, as fanciful as that sounds… it is just not the case.
As for the “that’s what it means to me” comment that is so rampant in religious conversations…. we can say all day long what God is to me… but that doesn’t change who he is. I can call a step stool a sprinkler all day long, but it does not change the fact that it is a step stool. There is nowhere in the Bible that declares God is who we make him to be. God is I AM. He is unchanging, omnipotent, just, loving, the ancient of days, Jehovah Jireh, Jehovah Raphe… the list goes on… This list comes from His Word, the Bible. I didn’t make up the names based on what I want him to be for me. I suggest you get to know him personally before making blanket statements about who is he to you… you may be surprised at what you find.
A Concerned Friend