1. Mark Carver says:

    Thanks for the opportunity, guys!

  2. Donovan Neal says:

    What a wonderful take on the post apocalyptic genre as a whole.  Virtually every time we see it in movies or books, the genre almost always distills down to a man who is no different than the beast of the field.  It’s pragmatically an atheistic worldview on screen. Powerful insight Mark.  Thank you for sharing such a great post!

    • Mark Carver says:

      Thanks, I’m glad you enjoyed it.

    • notleia says:

      Buuuuut, that’s the entire point of post-apocalyptic flicks, isn’t it? The destruction of civilization. And on a very utilitarian level, the difference between humankind and animalkind is civilization. So this gives us the space to explore how much of us is “merely” animal (because most of the function of these bodies of ours are animalistic, eating and breathing and sustaining), what is the stuff of civilization/culture/humanity. We can loop that back to what that means for religion or belief, when belief is a lot higher in the Hierarchy of Needs than food and shelter. What happens when religion, like the whole of civilization, is a luxury that nobody can afford anymore?

      • Mark Carver says:

        There’s nothing wrong with the destruction. As you said, that’s the point. It’s cathartic, sometimes even refreshing. I’m just exploring the element that these movies usually lack, the spiritual aspect, and whether these situations are possible from a Christian viewpoint through the lens of the Bible. But at the end of the day, they’re all just for fun.

        • notleia says:

          So where would you rank belief on the hierarchy of needs? Marslow’s (if that’s his name, I forgot as soon as I closed the tab) model has “purpose” rather high up on the hierarchy, after physiological and safety/security. But since the hierarchy of needs varies from culture to culture, the more collectivist cultures would probably lump “purpose” into “maintaining the community,” so it would essentially blend into safety/security.

          So I guess the purpose of this semi-research paper I’m making the comments section into is to get you to elaborate on the psychology of the thing, because the good stuff is in the psychology.

          • Mark Carver says:

            Personally, I would hope that my faith would transcend any condition, no matter how desperate or essential to survival. If I abandoned my religious beliefs in order to satisfy my basic human needs, then my faith is worthless. The whole purpose of belief in God’s grace is a hope for something beyond this life, and therefore beyond the hierarchy of needs.

            • notleia says:

              At the same time, it wouldn’t be effortless — not if this story has actual stakes that engage the audience.

              It’s a really lame story just to do “look at this awesome Christian community where everything is perfect versus this eeeevil pagan/heathen/atheist community.” That’s not even really a story: that’s propaganda.

              And that’s not even touching on how Christianity (or even just Protestantism) might change due to the apocalypse. We wouldn’t have the same network of gatekeepers we do now. We might not even have gatekeepers at all, so it could get weird (it gets pretty weird even nowadays).

              • Mark Carver says:

                Oh, it would take extraordinary effort to actually live out a faith like that, especially under duress. I’m sure someone’s written a story about this. And if they haven’t, they should.

              • dmdutcher says:

                A good example of what you want is in Leigh Brackett’s The Long Tomorrow. It’s an apocalypse where the dominant culture that survives is mennonite/amish, and there’s a small cadre of scientists trying to fix things. Unusually it escapes being propaganda either way; the amish life is stultifying but much more important to keep society going than the hero thought, while life as a scientist is more freeing but limited by the nihilism and violence of the past.

  3. Welcome aboard, Mark. Great to have you as part of the team. Batten down the hatches. This ride can get bumpy sometimes. 😉


  4. Autumn says:

    I think one interesting aspect post apocalyptic stories can/should explore is how being prepared in terms of one’s mind and skill helps people in stressful situations. One reason people might become horrible in a tense situation is because they have lived simpler lives where they could feel mostly fed and secure. Put those people in a situation where they must react too quickly to think through it, they are more likely I act on instinct and, say, rush to safety instead of taking someone else that may be relying on them. Someone who has had military training and has been in tense situations before might stand a better chance of looking to make sure as many people as possible reach safety. I think post apocalyptic stories are good for Christians, and everyone else, because they help people work through how they would and should react in certain situations.

    • Mark Carver says:

      I like to think that I would be a leather-studded, flamethrower-wielding warrior of the wasteland for God. Whatever that means.

      • Autumn says:

        Now I’m thinking about The Book of Eli, even though the main char may not entirely match your description :p

What do you think?