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The last puzzle
Aug 20, 2004 09:14 AM 2598 Views
(Updated Aug 20, 2004 09:14 AM)




The Good


The Shubhra Code:

You open the last cryptex without breaking the glass vial of vinegar.

Carefully removing the rolled papyrus you start reading slowly, hoping the rhythms would reveal a clearer meaning:

InVincible ends the truth of Holy Grail.

With an oblique past trail.

She rests at last within the tanned Writ.

And with the brightest Wit.

Like a peal of thunder, a career's worth of mystery novels and history come crashing down around you. Everything Shubhra had written suddenly made perfect sense.


In Vinci blends the truth of Holy Grail with a few skewed (oblique) historical (past) events(trail).

But She (Holy Grail=truth) rests within the writing(writ) of Brown(tanned) and also with intelligent(brightest) brain(wit).


While reading ''The Da Vinci Code'', some of you might have suddenly developed a newfound interest in secret societies and might have had an itch to cross check all the historical events mentioned by Dan Brown. Some of you might have gone thus far to double check the Da Vinci masterpiece ''The Last Supper'' online, the very moment you read the view point of Leigh Teabing. For a while I was in the same boat. I even dreamt of being in the forefront of unfolding this conspiracy theory. But reality hit very soon. Discovering that some of the historical events mentioned were fabricated to make the novel more juicy, whirled my world, it was as if Dan wiped my mission statement clean. And suddenly like lightning, it struck me that in the whole novel there was a short but powerful piece, which I may call, if you will, the Holy Grail (the secret), the piece which made me distinguish facts from fiction (vivek ).:


Langdon smiled. ''Sophie, every faith in the world is based on fabrication. That is the definition of faith?acceptance of that which we imagine to be true, that which we cannot prove. Every religion describes God through metaphor, allegory, and exaggeration, from the early Egyptians through modern Sunday school. Metaphors are a way to help our minds process the unprocessible. The problems arise when we begin to believe literally in our own metaphors.


The Bible represents a fundamental guidepost for millions of people on the planet, in much the same way the Koran, Torah, and Pali Canon offer guidance to people of other religions. If you and I could dig up documentation that contradicted the holy stories of Islamic belief, Judaic belief, Buddhist belief, pagan belief, should we do that?

Should we wave a flag and tell the Buddhists that we have proof the Buddha did not come from a lotus blossom? Or that Jesus was not born of a literal virgin birth? Those who truly understand their faiths understand the stories are metaphorical.''


Religious allegory has become a part of the fabric of reality. And living in that reality helps millions of people cope and be better people.''

Now you see, what Shubhra?s puzzle simply means: Dan Brown made a great effort in ''The Da Vinci code'' to blend some skewed historical events with the truth (the guidepost theory, which most of us chose to ignore, due to the adrenaline rush the rest of the plot provided). But the truth (guidepost theory) definitely lies in Brown's book and also with intellectuals who could recognize this Holy Grail.

The quoted excerpt above is the only thing which is of any essence. If all of us just realize this much, then I would consider this novel to be no less than a Sangreal.


The Bad:


The mystery novel wasn't all that mystifying considering the fact, I just had two suspects in mind much before the climax and, of course, one of them turns out to be the culprit, very predictable and nothing out of the ordinary which in my mind made the plot very obtuse.

For those who are bedazzled at how smartly Brown used historical events in his fictional novel then its my duty to let them know (as I discovered later) that its not a very novel idea, novels like ''Holy Blood Holy Grail'' published in the eighties reveal something very similar. The only task Dan Brown did was what Anu Malik does the best, mixing it up all very well. Now the next question is whether did he do a good job in doing that ?!

To an extent YES, but I was particularly annoyed by how often he reused some words, which to me didn't look like lack of a better word, but perhaps lack of a better choice, a very good example is ''silhouette'', please check it out yourself, it is repeated to an annoying extent at places where he could have chosen better words.


The Ugly


Truly, nothing. I believe it?s a good novel but not as good as its hyped. Not necessarily all that great that now we have numerous sequels pouring out everyday. The reason I still hold it as good read is because people who didn't have any chance to read any thing like this before might find it really interesting and amusing.


For the naive



A symbologist in Paris, Robert Langdon, was awoken, in the middle of the night, to the news that the curator of the Louvre was murdered, and beside the dead lay a cryptic puzzle scribbled on the floor, apparently by the curator himself.

It turned out; French police had Robert as the prime suspect. Sophie Neveu, a cryptologist, and the Granddaughter of the curator, Jacques Saunière, helps Robert to fleet. Later, Robert and Sophie discover that Jacques Saunière was associated with Priory of Sion (secret society), which kept a very sought after secret for over 2000 years, about the Holy Grail. Robert and Sophie then take the help of Leigh Teabing, an eccentric Royal British Historian to find the Holy Grail.

Plot revolves around cracking all the code Jacques Saunière packaged to protect the secret of Holy Grail.

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The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown