A deep and genuine concern for other people will remind us that the discovery of truth is not to be a victory for some and a defeat for others. Unless all can claim a share in that victory, truth itself will continue to be rejected by the losers, because it will be regarded as inseparable from the yoke of defeat. -- Leonard Foley

It's a problematic quote, I realize, because of its singular view of truth, but I like this idea that truth is a separate thing from victory and defeat, that victory does not mean truth any more than defeat means truth.

Belief and faith just are, those parts of the human experience that impels us beyond the simple arithmetic of winning or losing.

We watched Serenity last night and I was struck by how Joss wove the importance of believing into the plot. Shepherd tells Mal that it's not so much what you believe in, as that you believe at all. “Only one thing is gonna walk you through this, Mal. Belief,” he says.

I think The Operative 'let' the Serenity crew go because Mal showed him that their convictions were not really that far apart, that the Operative had in a sense been used because of his belief in a better world, in order to let chaos go unchecked. I really appreciate that Joss puts in a sense of grudging respect between the two, one held tenuous because they both know that their beliefs might lead them on opposite sides of the battlefield again.

The movie still breaks my heart, though, and we had to skip one particular part to make it manageable. I love the story, though, the characters and mostly the story about Firefly's resurrection - strength of community shown at its best.

1 comment:

Gladys said...

oh, i love serenity and the firefly series. (someone bring it back, please!) so thanks for this great reading of the film's ethics.