Just found this review of Heirs of the Gods. It might be the first professional review I’ve found of the book. And not a favorable review, at that. But the reviewer gives no reasons / evidence for his/her view that this book is full of “misunderstanding.” I guess Kirkus reviews are not known for arguing their position? I hate to say it, but it seems, as often happens when the mainstream only glances at the margins, that when a reviewer feels that something is thisnew, is this contrary to the traditional worldview, that he/she doesn’t need to give evidence or reasons. He/she just needs to say, “Look how crazy!” and everyone else will agree.
HEIRS OF THE GODS: A Space Age Interpretation of the Bible
By Lee & Vivianne Cervantes Gladden
Scripture for Star Wars fans. Two lapsed fundamentalists from Southern California are casually paging through their Gideons’ Bible in a motel one night, when they get zapped by the Spirit. Five years later, after total immersion in Hebrew, Greek, theology, futurology, and popular science, they come out with a fantastic visionary tract which is by turns hilarious, intriguing, and absurd. For the Gladdens, the Bible proves, among other things, that: a) the Celestials (Jehovah and the angels) once walked this earth and are due to return, sometime before the year 2030, from their headquarters on the planet Mazzaroth (see Job: 38:32); b) Jesus was cloned by the imposition of “”Jehovah’s DNA blueprint on the genetic material of [the virgin’s] womb””; c) UFOs are actually spacecraft manned by fallen Celestials, who work out of secret undersea bases in the Bermuda triangle; d) Adam and Eve were not the first humans, but super-beings created by Celestial surgery on an already existing stock c. 35,000 B.C.; e) the biblical cherubim were robots, Ezechiel’s “”living creatures”” were “”atmospheric entry craft of advanced design,”” and the book of Revelation deals with a televised ceremony (how else explain the “”sea of glass””?). And on and on, for 300 pages. When misunderstanding reaches this level, it becomes a kind of inspiration. Ideal for trekkies, spaced-out clergymen, and jaded atheists.
Pub Date: Jan. 8th, 1978
Publisher: Rawson, Wade–dist. by Atheneum
Updated 11 June 2012: I read a letter to the editor in the New York Times this morning (Section A18) which reminded me of this whole tendency of the mainstream / the traditional to assume it does not have to argue its position (but only to state it or insist on it). The letter-writer quotes a federal ruling — which I also found described here.
[U.S. District Judge Jeffery White] criticized the government’s purported interest in defending the traditional definition of marriage, writing, “Simply stating what has always been does not address the reasons for it. The mere fact that prior law, history, tradition, the dictionary and the Bible have defined a term does not give that definition a rational basis, it merely states what has been. Tradition, standing alone, does not provide a rational basis for the law.”
The writer of this Kirkus review knew that because the hypotheses in Heirs of the Gods were non-traditional and non-mainstream, all he/she had to do was say they represented “misunderstanding.” No reasons or evidence required, because, as I believe he/she assumed, tradition, standing alone, does provide a rational basis for… in this case, interpretation of the Bible.