My Open Letter to Woody Allen Discussing his film RIFKIN’S FESTIVAL Part 5 ”You’re a writer, right? Since when did relationships become rational? The heart has its reasons!”

Dear Woody,

In Rifkin’s Festival Mort is playing the Woody Allen character. Look at this discussion between Mort and his friend Gil:

Mort: Yes, Joanna is so great.
She’s just great.

Gil: I know. But have you ever met her husband?

Mort: Oh yeah. He’s a middle stone. I mean I just can’t believe that she stays with that guy.

Gil: I know. You know he’s kinda…
He’s so crazy. I mean he’s a wild.

Mort: You think he can pick her up
and throw her through the window. She rationalizes staying with him. She says that if she left him he’d be totally lost.

GIL: You’re a writer, right? Since when
did relationships become rational? The heart has its reasons.

This reminds me of your words almost 30 years ago: “The heart wants what it wants.”  

I just read this fine article about your words, but it gives a solution too.

CP CURRENT PAGE: OPINION | DEC 27, 2021The No. 1 worldview today is Woody Allen’s 

The No. 1 worldview today is Woody Allen’s 

Desires and needs
[PHOTO:UNSPLASH/ALEXISFAUVET]

When filmmaker Woody Allen was publicly exposed in 1992 as having an affair with the adopted daughter of his partner Mia Farrow (Soon-Yi Previn, 34 years his junior), his defense was simply, “The heart wants what it wants.”  

In quoting a statement made in an 1862 Emily Dickinson letter, Allen perfectly sums up the rationale underpinning today’s prevailing secular worldview, which is a deadly combination of post-truth and pragmatism, and driven solely by the adherent’s heart wanting what it wants.

And so what ends up happening?

The heart wants what it wants so it elevates itself above everyone else, putting others last, thus becoming the quintessential, prideful Captain You-Planet.

The heart wants what it wants so it commits smash-and-grab, follow-home, and brazen what-are-you-going-to-do-about-it robberies, taking from others what it hasn’t earned.

The heart wants what it wants so it goes to a Planned Parenthood abortion clinic to end the life of a person it finds currently inconvenient.

The heart wants what it wants so it breaks its marriage vows and destroys its family all for nothing more than a muscle spasm. 

The heart wants what it wants so it refuses to work and lives off of others because it bizarrely believes it is entitled to do so.

The heart wants what it wants so it suppresses truth and rewrites history to fit a lying narrative that furthers its agenda and enriches itself.

The heart wants what it wants so it cancels disagreement and slanders others because they threaten its echo chamber’s false peace.

The heart wants what it wants so it misuses religion in order to murder, suppress, oppress, and exploit people in hopes of getting the power, position, and wealth it desires.  

The heart wants what it wants so it deliberately thinks with its feelings instead of using the mind and facts to arrive at conclusions that may be distasteful at first, but saving in the end.  

In his article for The Blaze, Jason Whitlock writes, “My problem [with today’s culture] is its aspiration to redefine every form of sin as a natural desire we should not tame. “Do what thou wilt” is the unstated overarching theme of progressive politics. “Do what thou wilt” is the primary tenet of the Thelema occult practice established by English writer Aleister Crowley, a Satanist.”

 his dovetails exactly with how the Bible describes the natural, sinful heart. Scripture says that “God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually” (Gen. 6:5), that the heart is “more deceitful than all else and desperately sick; who can understand it?” (Jer. 17:9); that we are “brought forth in iniquity” (Ps. 51:5) and “he who trusts in his own heart is a fool” (Prov. 28:26); that “the hearts of the sons of men are full of evil and insanity is in their hearts throughout their lives” (Ecc. 9:3) and “out of the heart come evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, slanders” (Matt. 15:19).

Needless to say, it’s a terrible thing when that kind of heart gets what it wants.

What God’s heart wants

God knows the sinful heart wants what it wants and so He’s provided a cure that’s announced throughout Scripture. His Law acts as a tutor (Gal. 3:24) to bring us what we really need because, says Tim Keller, a sinful heart is one where “law only restrains the heart; it doesn’t change it.”

That being true, we find early in the Old Testament God said, “[I] will circumcise your heart and the heart of your descendants, to love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul” (Deut. 30:6). In the pages of the prophets, God says: “I will take the heart of stone out of their flesh and give them a heart of flesh, that they may walk in My statutes and keep My ordinances and do them” (Ez. 11:19-20), and “I will put My law within them and on their heart I will write it” (Jer. 31:33).

The awesome end result is a person where “the law of his God is in his heart; his steps do not slip” (Ps. 37:30-31) and they say, “I delight to do Your will, O my God; your Law is within my heart” (Ps. 40:8).  

The miraculous change is perfectly captured in a verse from John Newton’s hymn, “We Were Once as You Are”: “Our pleasure and our duty, though opposite before; since we have seen His beauty, are joined to part no more.”

And so what ends up happening?

The heart wants what God wants so it elevates others above itself and washes others’ feet.

The heart wants what God wants so it doesn’t rob others and steal what it hasn’t earned.

The heart wants what God wants so it values the life of everyone, including the unborn.

The heart wants what God wants so it is loyal to its spouse and keeps its marriage vows.  

The heart wants what God wants so it works with its hands to support itself and is generous to others.

The heart wants what God wants so it upholds and speaks the truth in love, following the narrative of Scripture.

The heart wants what God wants so it respectfully engages dissenting voices and is in no way threatened by different opinions (Phil. 1:28).

The heart wants what God wants so it engages in pure and undefiled religion (James 1:27), serving those around it with no self-centered agenda.  

The heart wants what God wants so it is deliberately mature in its thinking (1 Cor. 14:20) and is Holy Spirit led vs. emotions driven.

Needless to say, it’s a fantastic thing when that kind of heart gets what it wants.

In truth, Woody Allen’s explanation for his actions is correct. However, the effect of “the heart wants what it wants” on culture is dependent on whether the heart in question is one that gives itself over to its natural, sinful desires or one that is born again (John 3:3) and acts under the direction of God.

Needless to say, what the world desperately needs today is the latter where everywhere society turns, it sees people who are, “a letter of Christ … written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts” (2 Cor. 3:3).

Robin Schumacher is an accomplished software executive and Christian apologist who has written many articles, authored and contributed to several Christian books, appeared on nationally syndicated radio programs, and presented at apologetic events. He holds a BS in Business, Master’s in Christian apologetics and a Ph.D. in New Testament. His latest book is, A Confident Faith: Winning people to Christ with the apologetics of the Apostle Paul.

If a person can’t cope with the reality of the Godless universe many times they will turn to the area of Non-Reason!!!

Francis Schaeffer has correctly argued:

The universe was created by an infinite personal God and He brought it into existence by spoken word and made man in His own image. When man tries to reduce [philosophically in a materialistic point of view] himself to less than this [less than being made in the image of God] he will always fail and he will always be willing to make these impossible leaps into the area of nonreason even though they don’t give an answer simply because that isn’t what he is. He himself testifies that this infinite personal God, the God of the Old and New Testament is there. 

Instead of making a leap into the area of nonreason the better choice would be to investigate the claims that the Bible is a historically accurate book and that God created the universe and reached out to humankind with the Bible. Below is a piece of that evidence given by Francis Schaeffer concerning the accuracy of the Bible.

TRUTH AND HISTORY (chapter 5 of WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE?)

In the previous chapter we saw that the Bible gives us the explanation for the existence of the universe and its form and for the mannishness of man. Or, to reverse this, we came to see that the universe and its form and the mannishness of man are a testimony to the truth of the Bible. In this chapter we will consider a third testimony: the Bible’s openness to verification by historical study.

Christianity involves history. To say only that is already to have said something remarkable, because it separates the Judeo-Christian world-view from almost all other religious thought. It is rooted in history.

The Bible tells us how God communicated with man in history. For example, God revealed Himself to Abraham at a point in time and at a particular geographical place. He did likewise with Moses, David, Isaiah, Daniel and so on. The implications of this are extremely important to us. Because the truth God communicated in the Bible is so tied up with the flow of human events, it is possible by historical study to confirm some of the historical details.

It is remarkable that this possibility exists. Compare the information we have from other continents of that period. We know comparatively little about what happened in Africa or South America or China or Russia or even Europe. We see beautiful remains of temples and burial places, cult figures, utensils, and so forth, but there is not much actual “history” that can be reconstructed, at least not much when compared to that which is possible in the Middle East.

When we look at the material which has been discovered from the Nile to the Euphrates that derives from the 2500-year span before Christ, we are in a completely different situation from that in regard to South America or Asia. The kings of Egypt and Assyria built thousands of monuments commemorating their victories and recounting their different exploits. Whole libraries have been discovered from places like Nuzu and Mari and most recently at Elba, which give hundreds of thousands of texts relating to the historical details of their time. It is within this geographical area that the Bible is set. So it is possible to find material which bears upon what the Bible tells us.

The Bible purports to give us information on history. Is the history accurate? The more we understand about the Middle East between 2500 B.C. and A.D. 100, the more confident we can be that the information in the Bible is reliable, even when it speaks about the simple things of time and place.

The site of the biblical city called Lachish is about thirty miles southwest of Jerusalem. This city is referred to on a number of occasions in the Old Testament. Imagine a busy city with high walls surrounding it, and a gate in front that is the only entrance to the city. We know so much about Lachish from archaeological studies that a reconstruction of the whole city has been made in detail. This can be seen at the British Museum in the Lachish Room in the Assyrian section.

There is also a picture made by artists in the eighth century before Christ, the Lachish Relief, which was discovered in the city of Nineveh in the ancient Assyria. In this picture we can see the Jewish inhabitants of Lachish surrendering to Sennacherib, the king of Assyria. The details in the picture and the Assyrian writing on it give the Assyrian side of what the Bible tells us in Second Kings:

2 Kings 18:13-16

New American Standard Bible (NASB)

13 Now in the fourteenth year of King Hezekiah, Sennacherib king of Assyria came up against all the fortified cities of Judah and seized them. 14 Then Hezekiah king of Judah sent to the king of Assyria at Lachish, saying, “I have done wrong. Withdraw from me; whatever you impose on me I will bear.” So the king of Assyria required of Hezekiah king of Judah three hundred talents of silver and thirty talents of gold. 15 Hezekiah gave him all the silver which was found in the house of the Lord, and in the treasuries of the king’s house. 16 At that time Hezekiah cut off the gold from the doors of the temple of the Lord, and from the doorposts which Hezekiah king of Judah had overlaid, and gave it to the king of Assyria.

We should notice two things about this. First, this is a real-life situation–a real siege of a real city with real people on both sides of the war–and it happened at a particular date in history, near the turn of the eighth century B.C. Second, the two accounts of this incident in 701 B.C. (the account from the Bible and the Assyrian account from Nineveh) do not contradict, but rather confirm each other. The history of Lachish itself is not so important for us, but some of its smaller historical details.

The answer to finding meaning in life is found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. The Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted.

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.comhttp://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733, 13900 Cottontail Lane, Alexander, AR 72002

PS: When I watched RIFKIN’S FILM FESTIVAL I noticed how many times you talked about writing a great novel and reminded me of Gil in MIDNIGHT IN PARIS. I wrote 34 posts on my blog http://www.thedailyhatch.org on the historical characters mentioned in that movie. In fact, if you google CHARACTERS REFERENCED IN MIDNIGHT IN PARIS then it will bring you to my blog! The movie MIDNIGHT IN PARIS offers many of the same themes we see in Ecclesiastes. The second post looked at the question: WAS THERE EVER A GOLDEN AGE AND DID THE MOST TALENTED UNIVERSAL MEN OF THAT TIME FIND TRUE SATISFACTION DURING IT?

In the third post in this series we discover in Ecclesiastes that man UNDER THE SUN finds himself caught in the never ending cycle of birth and death. The SURREALISTS make a leap into the area of nonreason in order to get out of this cycle and that is why the scene in MIDNIGHT IN PARIS with Salvador Dali, Man Ray, and Luis Bunuel works so well!!!! These surrealists look to the area of their dreams to find a meaning for their lives and their break with reality is  only because they know that they can’t find a rational meaning in life without God in the picture.

The fourth post looks at the solution of WINE, WOMEN AND SONG and the fifth and sixth posts look at the solution T.S.Eliotfound in the Christian Faith and how he left his fragmented message of pessimism behind. In the seventh post the SURREALISTS say that time and chance is all we have but how can that explain love or art and the hunger for God? The eighth  post looks at the subject of DEATH both in Ecclesiastes and MIDNIGHT IN PARIS. In the ninth post we look at the nihilistic worldview of Woody Allen and why he keeps putting suicides into his films.

In the tenth post I show how Woody Allen pokes fun at the brilliant thinkers of this world and how King Solomon did the same thing 3000 years ago. In the eleventh post I point out how many of Woody Allen’s liberal political views come a lack of understanding of the sinful nature of man and where it originated. In the twelfth post I look at the mannishness of man and vacuum in his heart that can only be satisfied by a relationship with God.

In the thirteenth post we look at the life of Ernest Hemingway as pictured in MIDNIGHT AND PARIS and relate it to the change of outlook he had on life as the years passed. In the fourteenth post we look at Hemingway’s idea of Paris being a movable  feast. The fifteenth and sixteenth posts both compare Hemingway’s statement, “Happiness in intelligent people is the rarest thing I know…”  with Ecclesiastes 2:18 “For in much wisdom is much vexation, and he who increases knowledge increases sorrow.” The seventeenth post looks at these words Woody Allen put into Hemingway’s mouth,  “We fear death because we feel that we haven’t loved well enough or loved at all.”

In MIDNIGHT IN PARIS Hemingway and Gil Pender talk about their literary idol Mark Twain and the eighteenth post is summed up nicely by Kris Hemphill‘swords, “Both Twain and [King Solomon in the Book of Ecclesiastes] voice questions our souls long to have answered: Where does one find enduring meaning, life purpose, and sustainable joy, and why do so few seem to find it? The nineteenth post looks at the tension felt both in the life of Gil Pender (written by Woody Allen) in the movie MIDNIGHT IN PARIS and in Mark Twain’s life and that is when an atheist says he wants to scoff at the idea THAT WE WERE PUT HERE FOR A PURPOSE but he must stay face the reality of  Ecclesiastes 3:11 that says “God has planted eternity in the heart of men…” and  THAT CHANGES EVERYTHING! Therefore, the secular view that there is no such thing as love or purpose looks implausible. The twentieth post examines how Mark Twain discovered just like King Solomon in the Book of Ecclesiastes that there is no explanation  for the suffering and injustice that occurs in life UNDER THE SUN. Solomon actually brought God back into the picture in the last chapter and he looked  ABOVE THE SUN for the books to be balanced and for the tears to be wiped away.

The twenty-first post looks at the words of King Solomon, Woody Allen and Mark Twain that without God in the picture our lives UNDER THE SUN will accomplish nothing that lasts. Thetwenty-second post looks at King Solomon’s experiment 3000 years that proved that luxuries can’t bring satisfaction to one’s life but we have seen this proven over and over through the ages. Mark Twain lampooned the rich in his book “The Gilded Age” and he discussed  get rich quick fever, but Sam Clemens loved money and the comfort and luxuries it could buy. Likewise Scott Fitzgerald  was very successful in the 1920’s after his publication of THE GREAT GATSBY and lived a lavish lifestyle until his death in 1940 as a result of alcoholism.

In the twenty-third post we look at Mark Twain’s statement that people should either commit suicide or stay drunk if they are “demonstrably wise” and want to “keep their reasoning faculties.” We actually see this play out in the film MIDNIGHT IN PARIS with the character Zelda Fitzgerald. In the twenty-fourthtwenty-fifth and twenty-sixth posts I look at Mark Twain and the issue of racism. In MIDNIGHT IN PARIS we see the difference between the attitudes concerning race in 1925 Paris and the rest of the world.

The twenty-seventh and twenty-eighth posts are summing up Mark Twain. In the 29th post we ask did MIDNIGHT IN PARIS accurately portray Hemingway’s personality and outlook on life? and in the 30th post the life and views of Hemingway are summed up.

In the 31st post we will observe that just like Solomon Picasso slept with many women. Solomon actually slept with  over 1000 women ( Eccl 2:8, I Kings 11:3), and both men ended their lives bitter against all women and in the 32nd post we look at what happened to these former lovers of Picasso. In the 33rd post we see that Picasso  deliberately painted his secular  worldview of fragmentation on his canvas but he could not live with the loss of humanness and he reverted back at crucial points and painted those he loved with all his genius and with all their humanness!!! In the 34th post  we notice that both Solomon in Ecclesiastes and Picasso in his painting had an obsession with the issue of their impending death!!!

___________

Related posts:

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December 23, 2015 – 4:15 am

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“Woody Wednesday

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