The Librarian – Humanism in Conflict
I finally got to watch this wonderful movie the other day, The Librarian – Quest for the Spear. It stars Noah Wyle, Bob Newhart and Jane Curtain among others. It is a delightful movie. Think reluctant and super geeky Indiana Jones done as a comedy. It is a lot of fun.
But here is the conflict for me. The bad guys in the movie are the Serpent Brotherhood. They are named after the snake in Genesis because they think that sacred knowledge should be shared and used by all mankind. And, well, as a Humanist, I agree with that. In fact, the only problem I have with THE Library is that it seems like a total waste that only a select few get to see what’s in it. They have a lot of books in there. As a Humanist I firmly believe knowledge should be shared and used, that is what Libraries are for after all. So, I kind of agree with the Serpent Brotherhood. That knowledge belongs to humanity and shouldn’t be locked away.
On the other hand, there are objects in THE library that can be used to destroy and enslave the world. And, well, you wouldn’t want those falling into the wrong hands now would you. And that is the plot of the movie. The Serpent Brotherhood steals a portion of the Spear of Destiny and our hero has to find the other pieces and prevent the Serpent Brotherhood from enslaving the world. And, well, I agree wholeheartedly with that mission too.
So what have I learned? Well, one, that I think way too much. This is after all just a movie. But beyond that I do think even groups with noble aims such as the Serpent Brotherhood can be corrupted into something not so nice and perhaps that is why a place like THE Library are needed. But… who are they to tell us we don’t have a right to know. And there you have it. As much as I totally loved this movie, as a Humanist, it left me conflicted.