Week 3: What Would Their Dark Island Dreams Be?

Join us during the next several weeks as we examine seven points of discussion from 'The Voyage of the Dawn Treader' by Dr. Devin Brown.

Moderators: Meltintalle, Lady Arwen

Week 3: What Would Their Dark Island Dreams Be?

Postby Tirian » Nov 05, 2010 2:27 pm

After leaving the Magician’s Island, the crew sails under a gentle wind for twelve days with nothing more than chess and an occasional whale-sighting to pass the time. Then on the thirteenth day out, Edmund sees what at first looks like a “great dark mountain.” As the ship gets closer to the strange sight, it is described as a “dark mass” which is “not land at all, nor even, in an ordinary sense, a mist.”

In the previous adventure, Lucy’s worries proved to be groundless as the Magician turned out to be a friend instead of the foe she had imagined. Here in chapter twelve, Lewis revisits the topic of imaginary fears and takes great pains to point out that imaginary fears are sometimes not easily overcome, and—if we take the final outcome here as evidence—sometimes cannot be overcome at all, at least not without help, and so should simply should be avoided if possible. Evan Gibson notes that this chapter focuses on “groundless fear—the fear of bad dreams, darkness, and the unknown,” and proposes that Lewis’s statement here is that “we should not minimize the terror generated by imaginary evils.”

The crew—for now—rows on into the lonely darkness with lanterns lit and weapons drawn. After what seems to be a long time of peering vainly into the inky blackness, a cry is heard from somewhere in the distance, a cry of some “inhuman voice” or of someone “in such extremity of terror that he had almost lost his humanity.” Caspian finds himself unable to speak, so it is Reepicheep—the only one unaffected by the experience—who shouts out: “Who calls? If you are a foe we do not fear you, and if you are a friend your enemies shall be taught the fear of us.” The far off voice answers back begging to be allowed to come on board. Soon there is the sound of someone swimming, and then a man with “a wild, white face” appears in the torch light and is hauled on deck.

The man, as we soon learn, is the Lord Rhoop, one of the seven Narnian lords they have been seeking. Lordly no more, he is thin and haggard and dressed only in wet rags. He at once urges the crew to turn the ship about, crying, “Row for your lives away from this accursed shore.” When Reepicheep, still undaunted, asks what the danger is, the stranger gasps, “This is the Island where Dreams come true…. Not daydreams: dreams.”

There is a brief silence as the crew remembers “certain dreams they had had—dreams that make you afraid of going to sleep again” and then realizes what it would mean to land in a place where this kind of dream came true. Then they fling themselves on the oars and “row as they had never rowed before.”

Readers are told that Reepicheep again remains unmoved, and he demands to know why this “poltroonery” is being tolerated. Caspian ignores Reepicheep’s complaint. This is one time that the noble mouse is mistaken: it would be foolhardy, not honorable, to go on. Speaking for Lewis as well as for the rest of the crew, Caspian insists, “There are some things no man can face.”

Reepicheep’s reply—“It is, then, my good fortune not to be a man”—while humorous, contains a kernel of truth. Reepicheep is fortunate not to be human and so to be subject to the terrifying dreams which human beings have. In this account of the debilitating horror which dreams can produce, Lewis injects another autobiographical element in the Chronicles. In Surprised by Joy, Lewis records that one of his earliest memories was the terror of certain dreams and refers to them as a window that opened on what was “hardly less than Hell.”

As they row feverishly in what they hope is the direction away from the Dark Island, the crew members begin to be inundated with haunting, disabling, dream-like fears.

• Lucy, who is up in the fighting top, remains there because of worries that Edmund and Caspian “might turn into something horrible just as she reached them.”
• Eustace hears a noise “like … a huge pair of scissors opening and shutting.”
• Rynelf says he can hear “them crawling up the sides of the ship.”
• Caspian says, “It’s just going to settle on the mast.”
• A sailor reports hearing “the gongs beginning” as he knew they would.
• Drinian breaks out in a cold sweat, and his hand on the tiller starts to shake.

Suddenly Lord Rhoop bursts out in “a horrible screaming laugh” and yells: “We shall never get out. What a fool I was to have thought they would let me go as easily as that.” And this, of course, is Lewis’s point: irrational night-fears, the fears of bad dreams, do not let go easily. Without external help, perhaps sometimes they do not let go at all.

This is arguably the moment of greatest peril on the entire voyage. Not just the dual quest to find the other lords and reach the utter East, but the very lives of the entire crew are at risk of being lost. And there is nothing the crew can do. They are trapped inside their darkest nightmares unable to break free, just as Lord Rhoop was.

Earlier Aslan intervened to do what our characters could not do themselves—to undragon Eustace, to free Caspian and Edmund from the enchantment of Deathwater Island, and to keep Lucy from saying the spell that would have made her beautiful beyond the lot of mortals. Here the entire crew of the Dawn Treader is helpless, imprisoned in their private nightmares. Lucy, who has been keeping watch alone in the fighting-top, whispers, “Aslan, Aslan, if ever you loved us at all, send us help now.”

Questions for Discussion:

Here at Dark Island, Lewis certainly could have told us in great detail what dreams each character had, but as in the other passages we have looked at, here again he chooses to suggest more than he states.

1. Why do you think Lewis chose not to give specific details here?

2. What do you think were the dark dreams that each character might have had—Lucy, Eustace, Rynelf, Caspian, the sailor mentioned, Drinian, and Edmund?

3. Here in Lucy’s plea, we find what may be one of the only prayers in the Chronicles. Why do you think Lewis places it here?
Still the Webmaster
Still Benevolent
Still a Dictator
User avatar
Tirian
Site Admin
Grand Poobah
 
Posts: 1598
Joined: Nov 21, 2003
Location: Idaho
Gender: Male

Re: Week 3: What Would Their Dark Island Dreams Be?

Postby Ithilwen » Nov 05, 2010 11:33 pm

1. Why do you think Lewis chose not to give specific details here?


I think he just gave short peeks at it for three resons -- One. because he didn't want to go into horribl detail and frighten his young readers (It is a children's story after all). Two, because it is meant to be a more fast-paced, nail biting moment, and going into details about everyone's dreams would have interrupted the fast flow. Three, it wasn't necessary to tell the details.

2. What do you think were the dark dreams that each character might have had—Lucy, Eustace, Rynelf, Caspian, the sailor mentioned, Drinian, and Edmund?

Lucy -- Her fear of Edmund and Caspian turning into something might not necessarily have been based on any exact dream she had, but just a realization that anything bad can happen here, and that she's alone -- she can't get help from even her loved ones.

Eustace: I don't know. Maybe a haircut? Haha. :D

Drinian: It doesn't say enough details for me to form an opinion on his.

Rynelf and Caspain: Most likely just monsters coming towarsd him.

Sailor: Hmm... gongs? I must admit, I have no idea there...

3. Here in Lucy’s plea, we find what may be one of the only prayers in the Chronicles. Why do you think Lewis places it here?


Because it was one of their most desperate moments -- more so than anywhere else in the series, in my opinion.


~Riella
User avatar
Ithilwen
NarniaWeb Zealot
 
Posts: 5886
Joined: Jul 18, 2010
Location: Taking over the world while twirling my evil girlstache.
Gender: Female

Re: Week 3: What Would Their Dark Island Dreams Be?

Postby Valiant » Nov 06, 2010 6:03 am

I think he didn't give details about what they were scared of because its more frightning when left up to the reader's imagination. When left up to imagination, it is more powerful that limiting what they are scared of with words.

As well, its a mystery, making it more interesting.
Image
Signature by daughter of the King; Avatar by Adeona
-Thanks :]

Keeper of the Secret Magic
User avatar
Valiant
NarniaWeb Guru
 
Posts: 1503
Joined: Jul 31, 2010
Location: In Narnia of course
Gender: Female

Re: Week 3: What Would Their Dark Island Dreams Be?

Postby eustacegirl » Nov 06, 2010 7:40 am

Eustace- a bad haircut.
Edmund: the White Witch
Lucy: maybe her brother betraying them again?
User avatar
eustacegirl
NarniaWeb Zealot
 
Posts: 6211
Joined: Jul 16, 2008
Gender: Female

Re: Week 3: What Would Their Dark Island Dreams Be?

Postby Devin Brown » Nov 06, 2010 7:54 am

Edmund struggles with power at several points in the Chronicles--in the first book a number of times with Peter and in the third book with Caspian at Deathwater Island.

In fact, this excessive desire for power seems to be the major flaw that Lewis gives him.

Perhaps the filmmakers are really following Lewis's lead in having the White Witch appear in Edmund's Dark Island dream promising to make him king.
Devin Brown
NarniaWeb Regular
 
Posts: 21
Joined: Jul 31, 2010
Gender: Male

Re: Week 3: What Would Their Dark Island Dreams Be?

Postby Liberty Hoffman » Nov 06, 2010 9:52 am

1. Why do you think Lewis chose not to give specific details here?
well, Lewis never went into any great detail on many accounts, so this never surprised me. But maybe he wanted readers to let their imagination make up what they were seeing.



2. What do you think were the dark dreams that each character might have had—Lucy, Eustace, Rynelf, Caspian, the sailor mentioned, Drinian, and Edmund?
Lucy's: well, I never could quite think of what she might be thinking about, but in the Focus On The Family radio drama for VotDT, they make Lucy's nightmare to be her remembering when the White Witch killed Aslan. I think that makes sense.
Edmund's: I have always thought that Edmund would have a nightmare about the White Witch. it just makes sense.
Rynelf's: not knowing much about his character (Lewis doesn't give him any backround) I don't know.
Caspian's: he could easily be having nightmares about Miraz.....
Drinian's: again, not knowing his backround, I don't know.


3. Here in Lucy’s plea, we find what may be one of the only prayers in the Chronicles. Why do you think Lewis places it here?
I have always thought of The Dark Island as being a version of Hell, in a sense. so they find themselves in this 'Hell' and Lucy is so scared that she cries out to Aslan. they think they shall be trapped forever, but Lucy remembers hope and The One who can save them.
Image
NW sister - wild rose ~ NW big sis - ramagut
Born in the water
Take quick to the trees
I want all that You are

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EADBC57vKfQ
User avatar
Liberty Hoffman
NarniaWeb Master
Libby the Epic; sub in the WC
 
Posts: 11709
Joined: Aug 22, 2008
Location: Where the gully's deep in green and golden glades
Gender: Female

Re: Week 3: What Would Their Dark Island Dreams Be?

Postby Eustace » Nov 06, 2010 8:39 pm

1. Why do you think Lewis chose not to give specific details here?
I think he wanted to not describe these dreams because then we could imagine they were our dreams.

2. What do you think were the dark dreams that each character might have had—Lucy, Eustace, Rynelf, Caspian, the sailor mentioned, Drinian, and Edmund?
Lucy: Definitely had monster dreams. Or where people turned in to monsters. Maybe the thing she said to Susan in PC became one of her later dreams. Men turning into animals but still looking like men.
Eustace: Because the ship was small and not like the others he had seen in Our World, he was afraid that it someone could just cut the mast and stuff with something like scissors.
Edmund: As far as I can remember and read from the book we don’t really have any info on what he is saying or even thinking. So, it is really hard to tell. But I would guess his nightmare would be Peter and the rest dying and he not being there to stop it or if he was there not being able to move and stop it. Although that kind of sounds like something Peter would have.
Rynelf: He was having dreams that people probably pirates were attacking the ship.
The sailor mentioned: it is hard to determine what exactly he is talking about here, but it sounds like the sailor is dreaming that the end of the world is going to happen soon.
Caspian: It sounds like he dreams of dragons or some creature that is going to settle on the mast.
Drinian: Hard to tell in this because of the little info on this. It is definitely something really scary for him to break out in sweat.

3. Here in Lucy’s plea, we find what may be one of the only prayers in the Chronicles. Why do you think Lewis places it here?
Because it was in horrible place that seemed to go on and on and this time they were fighting something they couldn't really fight. All the other times they could actually fight and fought to the death, bravely. As Caspian says this was something no man could face (alone, only with the help of God).
Image
Homeschoolers taking over the World!
Member of RD's club.
VP of the CWM club
Dragon fan club
I Support Scrubb!
User avatar
Eustace
NarniaWeb Junkie
 
Posts: 777
Joined: Mar 12, 2008
Location: United States
Gender: Female

Re: Week 3: What Would Their Dark Island Dreams Be?

Postby Devin Brown » Nov 07, 2010 10:26 am

We are told that Lucy, who is up in the fighting top, remains there because of worries that Edmund and Caspian “might turn into something horrible just as she reached them.”

Perhaps Lucy is afraid that her bother and Caspian will turn into the "swaggering, bullying idiots" she encountered on Deathwater Island.

A changed Edmund may have been haunting Lucy's nightmares ever since he lied about his visit to Narnia and then betrayed them all to the White Witch.

Caspian will turn into something horrible--not in a dream but in real life when he will first insist on going with the others to the World's End and then when he orders that since he cannot go, they all must turn back.
Devin Brown
NarniaWeb Regular
 
Posts: 21
Joined: Jul 31, 2010
Gender: Male

Re: Week 3: What Would Their Dark Island Dreams Be?

Postby waggawerewolf27 » Nov 07, 2010 1:14 pm

1. Why do you think Lewis chose not to give specific details here?

I think the reason is that these were all individual details, emphasizing each person's unique reaction to the island. And also that these individual reactions were simultaneous. Readers are meant to think what sort of nightmares they have had, themselves, to realise that the characters are human, too and, like themselves, are prone to get such horrible moments.

2. What do you think were the dark dreams that each character might have had—Lucy, Eustace, Rynelf, Caspian, the sailor mentioned, Drinian, and Edmund?

I think that Lucy and Eustace in particular, are still recovering from the effects of their temptations. Lucy's temptation was relational - one attached to her own physical appearance and to what others think of her. It is not surprising that Lucy's nightmares would also concern changes in relationships with those closest to her - Edmund, her own brother, and Caspian, their closest Narnian human friend. I agree she has seen them squabbling already, and what if they turn into even worse monsters? After all, Eustace already has.

Eustace's nightmares might also concern his experiences trying to undragon himself. Very cutting episodes they were, like a huge pair of scissors. :D I'm not sure what Edmund said his dream was in the book. And I am wondering if this particular episode is also a sharp reminder of the nightmarish quality of some of the Dawn Treader adventures.

Eustace+Jill wrote:Sailor: Hmm... gongs? I must admit, I have no idea there...


That gong reminds me strongly of the old Rank films logo, a tall, slim, sillhouette of a man who wields a huge mallet against an enormous gong. A very sinister-sounding gong. This British film company used to produce some really creepy films, often of the black and white variety, murder mystery sort. The sailor is the 'anybody' of the crew who represents the rest of us who listen to tall tales and who let their fears drive them into nightmares. Sailors' tales, indeed.

3. Here in Lucy’s plea, we find what may be one of the only prayers in the Chronicles. Why do you think Lewis places it here?

Dark Island doesn't really represent an outward menace: it is an inner one, playing on our own desires, our hopes and our fears, in particular. There is only One who can save us from ourselves. Just my thoughts. :)
User avatar
waggawerewolf27
NarniaWeb Zealot
 
Posts: 7370
Joined: Sep 25, 2009
Location: Oz
Gender: Female

Re: Week 3: What Would Their Dark Island Dreams Be?

Postby daughter of the King » Nov 07, 2010 2:21 pm

1. I think Lewis did not go into great detail for a couple of reasons. First, the character's reactions are happening simultaneously and if he took the time to expand upon their nightmares it would break the flow of the story. Second, that which you do not know is scarier than that which you do know (is that a quote from something, or did I just make it up? I'm almost positive I've read it somewhere before). The Dark Island has more of an effect on the reader when the specifics of the nightmares are left to the imagination because then they can feel more like the reader's own nightmares.

2. Lucy's nightmare, whatever it was, was extremely vivid. Speaking from my own experience, the most vivid nightmares are the ones that are the most realistic. Perhaps a bomb dropping on her house? Aslan's death is a possibility, although I think His resurrection would have stuck with her more than His death. Also, the bit describing her being too frightened to climb down from the fighting-top can be interpreted two ways: 1, Lucy has had a nightmare where Caspian and Edmund turned into something horrible. Or 2, Lucy knows that Caspian and Edmund have had nightmares where they have turned into something horrible. Depending on which way you go, the implications are different.

For Eustace, I always imagined that he dreamed a giant pair of scissors was cutting him like he was a paper doll. Or maybe a giant beetle coming to life and tormenting him.

"Them" crawling up the sides of the ship could be pirates, or some kind of creature I suppose. I always imagined creatures that looked like crosses between a lizard, monkey, and goblin with knives in their teeth. Don't ask me why.

I always though Caspian's dream involved some kind of monster. Doesn't every child have a dream at least once in their life that has a monster in it? And there is a later bit that says "Caspian, trying not to look at anything (especially not to keep looking behind him), went aft to Drinian." Whatever "it" is, it probably chased him in his dream or kept appearing behind him.

For the sailor I always thought it wasn't the gongs that were particularly scary but what the gongs implied. Gongs are not just cool-sounding instruments; they also create an atmosphere. Gongs played an important part in creating the atmosphere in his dream. Perhaps they signaled whenever something bad would happen or maybe they sounded continually while other things were happening. Or maybe I'm reading into it too much........

Drinian.......I think it is interesting to note that it is not when they first realize that their nightmares may come true that he breaks into a cold sweat. He starts sweating when he realizes that they cannot get out.

I have no ideas for Edmund's dream. It could be anything.

3. Well, because it works? I haven't really given it much thought. I need to read Ancient Mariner again. Most of the Dark Island sequence is very much like what happens to the mariner.

*lightbulb turns on* Maybe because when Lucy is frightened her thoughts always turn to Aslan? Maybe she didn't even mean to speak aloud, but those were her innermost thoughts. As for the significance of the "prayer" appearing here and nowhere else, in other places in the Chronicles our heroes have always had someone nearby to help them. Whether it was someone like Puddleglum and Fledge or each other, they could always help each other out of the situation. They always trust in Aslan, but they always have the physical presence of others with them. On the Dark Island, though there are people (and one mouse) all around, they are isolated because their fears separate them. They are physically there, but there minds are elsewhere. *lightbulb turns off again* I wonder if that made any sense.

Another interesting thing I noticed while reading this passage over: at the end, when they're out in the light again, Rynelf says "I reckon we've made pretty good fools of ourselves."
Dreams are terrifying while you are in them and when you just wake up from them, but when the morning comes they aren't terrifying anymore. And you might even wonder why you were scared in the first place.
Image
Narniaweb sister to Pattertwig's Pal
User avatar
daughter of the King
Moderator
Princess Dot
 
Posts: 2409
Joined: Sep 22, 2009
Gender: Female

Re: Week 3: What Would Their Dark Island Dreams Be?

Postby Pepper Darcy » Nov 07, 2010 6:15 pm

THIS one looks like so much fun! :) I actually have theories... but just mostly for Lucy and Edmund's fears. To begin with... I agree entirely with Eustace+Jill's theory for Ed and Lu!

1. Why do you think Lewis chose not to give specific details here?
Wow. That is really hard. Lewis is so vauge about other things: not naming Lilliandil. Not naming the world Narnia was in. Not giving detail to certain other things. 1. he might be leaving it up to us; or 2. what if some of their nightmares were similar to his (Lewis') and he didn't want to describe them? Or maybe they remind him too much of his nightmares? Perhaps?

2. What do you think were the dark dreams that each character might have had—Lucy, Eustace, Rynelf, Caspian, the sailor mentioned, Drinian, and Edmund?
I'll deal with just Lucy and Edmund; though whoever said a bad haircut for Eustace was *genious*!! :)

I've read on a forum here that someone was asking what Lucy's fear was... and the answers there (DiGoRkIrKe) I thought were very profound... You can find the thread here: viewtopic.php?f=8&t=1664

Someone has said a *LONG* time ago on a comment on a Narniaweb news deal that they thought Lucy's nightmare would be Aslan dying. But I can't see that as being very logical; 1. Lewis never hinted that way. He indicates Lucy's afraid of something concerning Edmund and even Caspian. 2. Lucy knows exactly WHO Aslan is; she's seen him die; she's seen him RISE again; she's seen him defeat the WW. So it's safe for her to know without a doubt that he'll NEVER die. She's not going to have horrifying dreams about that.

She WOULD however have nightmares about Edmund betraying her all over again. I've even had nightmares that I was Lucy having nightmares about Edmund betraying me (Lucy) and I asked Aslan if it were going to happen. I'm not Lucy and I've had those sorts of nightmares. What is more tormenting than the thought and fear of your brother betraying you again?

And that leads right into Edmund's nightmare. Everyone could say without a doubt that it was probably the WW. I think that's why it's genious that the screenwriters wrote Tilda into the VotDT: Not that she's coming back... but that SHE is his NIGHTMARE. It follows with the book. She is ONLY a nightmare; he's probably sat there in the dark weeping over those memories; you can see the horror in his eyes, the sadness, the regret, the memory of *everything* he ever did in the picture that happens to make up my signature; he's haunted by all those things; why shouldn't it torment him?

As for the others... I've no idea.

3. Here in Lucy’s plea, we find what may be one of the only prayers in the Chronicles. Why do you think Lewis places it here?

For as vauge as Lewis *can* be, it's certainly amazing that he placed something so poignatly beautiful right there. It's such a wonderful, touching scene. It is the one thing I wanted most out of the VotDT movie... I hope it's there. But it is such a powerful, beautiful scene-- a short line that (for me) made up the essence, power, and wonderful beauty of VotDT... even the whole series: 'Aslan, Aslan! If you ever loved us, send us help now!' (I think that's how it goes) The fact is, Aslan does love them; Aslan does send them help every time Narnia is in trouble (a fact which the book Tirian, to distinguish from our honourable Moderator Tirian, doesn't fail to recognize). He sent help every time Narnia needed it. And likewise, Lewis is pointing us back to the cross, to Christ, to the Father. He is always there when it's the darkest and when we need it most.

Does Aslan fail to give answer? Never! 'Courage, dear heart!' Such comfort! That could quell the fear of *any* heart! It's so beautiful-- it's chilling really. I am so hoping for that scene in the new movie. If they can put that in there and capture the beauty and enchantment of that scene, then for me-- I am content with this adaption!
Image

:music: risk it all cuz I'll catch you if you fall... if my heart was a house you'd be home :music:
User avatar
Pepper Darcy
NarniaWeb Nut
 
Posts: 161
Joined: Sep 23, 2009
Location: Lalineth
Gender: Female

Re: Week 3: What Would Their Dark Island Dreams Be?

Postby Galadrielle » Nov 13, 2010 2:54 pm

1. Why do you think Lewis chose not to give specific details here?

Having studied Carl Jung in school, and having done research on 9th Century Dream Scholar Macrobius, whom Lewis also studied, I believe that dreams are very personal. Lewis might not have been able to share his own dreams even with his wife Joy, as God made each of us different from each other. Furthermore, Lewis saw with his own eyes battlefield horrors in World War I that are inappropriate for stories that we would today consider rated PG-13 – inappropriate for people under 14 and inappropriate for sensitive people – and, we may argue, inappropriate even for soldiers such as himself or Tolkien. The R-rated things witnessed by soldiers including Lewis, Tolkien, and countless others are just too grim to be put into words in a faerie tale for the general audience. We see some of the horror in Lord of the Rings, experienced by Faramir, but Faramir tells these horrors to his doctor Aragorn, and to Aragorn alone. I believe Lewis does not give the specific details because his characters, just like his friends and he, need to keep what is best kept private very private.

2. What do you think were the dark dreams that each character might have had—Lucy, Eustace, Rynelf, Caspian, the sailor mentioned, Drinian, and Edmund?

Lucy: Lucy’s fears that Caspian and Edmund might turn into something horrible may be based on reality. Everyone has the capacity for sin, and everyone does sin. While her royal colleague Caspian and her brother Edmund may retain their good looks and regal baring, they may become corrupted by pride to the extent that they may no longer become the Caspian and Edmund she knows and loves. Lucy despises evil, and for Caspian and Edmund to turn into evil men would smash her heart to smithereens.

Eustace: Eustace was once a reptile. He may fear giant scissors, wielded by Edmund and Caspian, to mutilate him by cutting off his tail or a limb, even though Edmund and Caspian would never do that to any of Aslan’s creatures, and besides, Eustace is now human, not reptile.

Rhince (not Rynelf): The “them crawling up the sides of the ship” may be pirates. We love, and Lewis may have loved, pirates as long as they are safe and sound in books and movies. However, we shudder when pirates appear in the newspapers. With his sense of chivalry, Rynelf must also consider the safety of the woman on board: Lucy. If he must rescue Lucy from the pirates, then he must abandon his position in the ship – and the whole ship would be forfeit to pirates.


Caspian: Caspian fears for Lucy’s safety. It may be a vampire out to get Lucy, and Caspian may dread even the handsome vampires of 21st Century America. It may also be a dragon threatening the life of Lucy, waiting to take her away in his evil clutches.

The Sailor may be from Calormene, not Narnia. I do not imagine gongs in Narnia, but rather church bells to celebrate Christmas, Aslan’s Resurrection, weddings, funerals, and other occasions. Gongs, on the other hand, summon slaves to tasks they dread doing. In Lewis’ day, servants were summoned by gongs. I myself remember, when I was a damsel, being dragged away from my outdoor play to the dreary task of setting the table by the dinner bell, which I found extremely annoying. The Sailor’s Gongs may be familiar, tearing him away from pleasure and towards hated tasks.

Drinian: This is none of our business; all we know is that it is too unpleasant for Drinian to share with anyone later. Lewis includes himself in the book when he mentions a conversation between himself and Lucy. Whatever Drinian is experiencing is inappropriate for Lucy’s ears, so she never knows, and she is unable to tell Lewis.

Edmund: I do not see Lewis mentioning Edmund. Perhaps the horrors that Edmund experienced in Jadis’ company are enough horror for him anyway in Lion, Witch, and Wardrobe. He is not mentioned either as one who is in fear nor as one who comforts.



3. Here in Lucy’s plea, we find what may be one of the only prayers in the Chronicles. Why do you think Lewis places it here?

Decades later, in the 1970’s, rock star Alice Cooper – who happens to be a very committed Christian – wrote “If I should find myself in blackest night/And fear is stabbing me all over/ A tiny prayer cracks the dark with light . . .” (ca 1978, lines 1 – 3). I believe all of us have blackest nights of uncertainty. Yet for both Lucy in the story, and for Lewis, Cooper, you, and me in real life, it is God who comes to our aid when we are in blackest night and when fear is stabbing us all over. God wants to help us, but we must want His help. Lucy was the one who got the Dawn Treader to the Dark Island in the first place. As Queen, she had the power to veto Capian’s decision to sail to the Dark Island, and she herself did not want to go anyway, but she told Caspian “I’m game.” This led to Caspian doing what he promised Aslan he would do: rescue Lord Rhoop. Lucy knows she cannot get herself out of this deep mess into which they have all, including Rhoop in another boat, have sailed. Caspian and Edmund are flawed human beings, although Aslan can certainly speak to, and assist, Lucy through them as His servants, just as I have referred to Lewis and Cooper – both men being servants of Jesus, their words being His mighty weapons against the Devil. Interestingly, Aslan in the form of an albatross, settles briefly on the mast – Caspian fears something evil settling on the mast and threatening Lucy’s safety, but instead, Aslan in bird form settles on the mast and assists Lucy and her family and friends into the light. Aslan wants to help Caspian, but He also wants Lucy to ask for help.
Galadrielle
NarniaWeb Newbie
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Oct 26, 2010
Gender: Female

Re: Week 3: What Would Their Dark Island Dreams Be?

Postby Lilygloves » Dec 20, 2010 6:27 pm

For the last question, I believe that Aslan wanted to teach the characters not exactly to overcome their fears, but to trust him. If he wanted them to overcome their fears, he would not have sent the bird to save them. Through this panic, Lucy, the innocent one, is the only one that remembers to call on Aslan. She later credits him to destroying the island. Perhaps Aslan would have wanted them to overcome their fears, but that does not happen so he counts on them to trust him. After the ship is rescued from the island, they overcome their fears and realize there really was never anything to worry about in the first place. In the same way, in our lives, we reach a point when we cannot go on our own and reach rock bottom which is usually caused by ourselves and our decisions. At this point, we need to call on God to get us out of the pit. The crew was at their darkest point based on their own fears and needed to call on Aslan to save them.

Although it was not the only case of a prayer; Tirian called on Aslan when he was tied to the tree.
User avatar
Lilygloves
NarniaWeb Junkie
 
Posts: 573
Joined: Dec 18, 2010
Location: A diner
Gender: Female


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest