Miles Kington: The hidden truth behind the 'Da Vinci Code' ban

The Catholic Church was not at all displeased by the book. It welcomed any publicity for a best-seller that got Christianity talked about
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The Independent Online

It's about time we paid another visit to the fount of all wisdom, the United Deities. This is where all the gods that were ever worshipped get together up there and survey our doings down here, and scratch their heads over us. Here are the minutes of the latest proceedings.

1. The chairgod said that the next item on the agenda was The Da Vinci Code, the new film on Earth.

2. The Anglican God said he thought it was a book.

3. The Jewish God said it was a book, film, DVD, jigsaw puzzle, T-shirt, well, you knew what these humans were like. Give it 10 years and Disney would turn it into a stage musical, you mark his words.

4. Jove wanted to know if anyone had seen The Lion King. If he was a lion, he would be very afraid. Every time humanity turned an animal into an artistic entity, the animal immediately went on the endangered list. More people had seen people dressed up as lions than had ever seen real lions.

5. The Jewish God said he believed there was a new film out called The Squid and the Whale. That was two endangered species for the price of one. However, he did not believe that Disney would ever turn that into a musical, as humans would find it hard to dress up as a squid.

6. The chairgod said he sometimes found it a great strain chairing these meetings, as the gods and goddesses always strayed from the subject before the subject had properly been broached. He reminded them that much controversy had been caused on Earth by a book and film called The Da Vinci Code, which suggested that Jesus Christ had had a child by a human woman, and that his descendants were still on Earth.

7. Zeus said he couldn't see anything controversial about that. He had sired many people on Earth during his trips in disguise there, and thousands of his descendants were still milling around. He thought he might be related to quite a few swans and bulls as well.

8. The Catholic God said it was rather different for the Roman and Greek Gods. There were many of them, for a start, so there was a great variety of character - there could be a jealous one, a mischievous one, a randy one and so on. But if you only had one god, he had to be pretty damned perfect.

9. So he could quite understand why the Catholic Church was getting hot under the collar by a book which said Jesus had got someone pregnant.

10. The Jewish God said that he quite understood too, but for different reasons. He thought that the Catholic Church was not displeased at all by The Da Vinci Code, and that they welcomed any publicity for a best-seller about Christianity. The only good reason for the Catholic Church trying to ban The Da Vinci Code was to give it more publicity and get Christianity talked about.

11. The Catholic God said that he respected the Jewish God's businesslike outlook, but that it wasn't as simple as that.

12. The Jewish God said he resented being stereotyped as a good businessgod. If to be Jewish was to be businesslike, then why weren't there any best-selling books and films about the Jewish God? If Hollywood was run by Jewish people, as was sometimes said, why weren't there any Jewish films? Huh?

13. Because, said the Anglican God, they had all been made years ago. The Ten Commandments. Samson and Delilah. Many other films like that... And had there not been a film called The Bible? That must have wrapped it all up.

14. Allah said it was a smart move to have made a film called The Bible. He didn't remember there having been a film called The Koran. Nor did he think that anyone would ever write a Da Vinci Code about Islam, as the Prophet Mahomet had married often and had children often. Not that he had read the book.

15. The chairgod asked, as a matter of interest, if any of the gods who had been discussing it had actually read The Da Vinci Code. There being nobody who had, he invited them to pass on to the next item, which was the timing of the next big earthquake.

More of this soon, I hope.