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Saturday, April 10, 2010


I wanted to embed the red pill / blue pill clip from the movie instead of the trailer above but for some strange reason You Tube does not allow embedding of any of the Matrix clips that deal with the subject of the Matrix itself. Click on this link to watch the Red pill / Blue pill ‘What is the Matrix’ clip.

*** Please note that these articles provide a Biblical perspective on the idea of the ‘Matrix’ as an alternate reality, an idea that has gone mainstream as a result of the Matrix movie trilogy. This will be a multi part series based strictly on the first movie titled ‘The Matrix’. The other two films in the trilogy also had some interesting symbolism and ideology that will be explored separately at a later time.
The Matrix movie trilogy was a major box office success, especially the first one in the series simply titled The Matrix. The following brief description of the movie is from Wikipedia: The film describes a future in which reality as perceived by humans is actually the Matrix: a simulated reality created by sentient machines to pacify and subdue the human population, while their bodies' heat and electrical activity are used as an energy source. Upon learning this, computer programmer "Neo" is drawn into a rebellion against the machines, involving other people who have been freed from the "dream world" and into reality.
As described above the premise of the movie is that the majority of the population lives in a dream world, a world that exists only in their minds not in reality. This simulated reality that the people lived inside of, and believed to be the real world is explained as follows: Simulated reality is the proposition that reality could be simulated—perhaps by computer simulation—to a degree indistinguishable from "true" reality. It could contain conscious minds which may or may not be fully aware that they are living inside a simulation. In its strongest form, the "simulation hypothesis" claims it is entirely possible and even probable that we are living in a simulated reality.
In the movie the simulated reality is accomplished by interfacing the human brain with a computer. This idea has also been explored in other movies such as the recent blockbuster ‘Avatar’ (click to read my review), and ‘Surrogates’ featuring Bruce Willis.
The idea of the human brain being able to receive input from external sources and becoming so wrapped up in the ‘reality’ created for it that it actually believes the simulated reality to be actual reality and acts accordingly is no longer the realm of science – fiction but has become reality in a major way this past decade. In the movie sentient machines, literally machines with intelligence and senses, created the computer programs that the human brain was interfaced with, and which led people to believe that they were living active lives even while they were immobile inside a pod, literally chained in a dungeon like environment. The idea of the visible world being a world of illusion, a simulated reality is not just the domain of science or science – fiction but also that of religion and philosophy. In Hinduism the philosophy of ‘MAYA’ or illusion plays a central role. Perceived physical reality is considered to be an illusion that hides transcendent truth that may only be seen once the veil of Maya or illusion has been rent.
Sages and seers, ancient and modern day ones such as Timothy Leary have attempted to penetrate the veil that hides the invisible dimension through the use of hallucinogenic drugs. Shamanism of the Americas and similar tribal cultures in Africa, Asia and Australia also are proponents of ‘altered states of reality’ through the use of hallucinogenics such as peyote. Carlos Castaneda, a Peruvian born American wrote a series of books that promoted the idea of accessing realities beyond the everyday mundane existence through the use of traditional shaman hallucinogenic herbs such as weed (marijuana) and magic mushrooms. The idea that these religious philosophers promote is similar to the central theme of the movie, The Matrix that there is a world hidden from general view that is the real world as opposed to the dream world that people live in, and believe to be real. The idea of enlightenment or illumination is common to all religions, and the intent is to arrive at an understanding of the invisible through meditation and / or use of drugs. The problem with the methods employed by the sages, ancient and modern such as Carlos Castaneda is that how does one really know that that which they witness when in an altered state is also not an illusion? How can one be sure that it is not just another dream within the dream? The question of ‘What is Reality’ becomes a central one when pursuing this line of thought, of dimensional realities, what is the real dimension, and how can we be sure that it is real? This series is an attempt to answer these questions in a logical and reasonable manner, without having to rely upon hallucinogenic drugs or other activities such as TM, which is just another method of inducing an altered state. Nevertheless the idea of a Matrix like illusory world hiding the real world is inherent to all religions including Biblical Christianity, a concept that we will study in much greater detail to come to an understanding of the ‘REAL WORLD’.
The Matrix explained according to the movie
In the movie Morpheus, who is Neo’s mentor explains the nature of reality to him through dialogues such as the following:
·         "What is "real"?
·         How do you define "real"?"
·         "Have you ever had a dream, Neo, that you were so sure was real? What if you were unable to wake from that dream, Neo? How would you know the difference between the dream world and the real world? "
·         "If real is what you can feel, smell, taste and see, then 'real' is simply electrical signals interpreted by your brain."

This last dialogue that defines reality as ‘electrical signals interpreted by the brain’ is the basis for the understanding of The Matrix. If reality is merely a matter of perception then any person or computer that can transmit signals into the brain can fool it into believing in a ‘reality’ that is unreal. In the movie, this was accomplished by wiring the humans to a computer. However with the advent of wireless technologies, we can now understand that a person does not need to be ‘wired’ directly to the external source to receive signals, it can be done wirelessly. Surgical experimentation has proven that the brain can be fooled into experiencing sensations merely by manipulating parts of the cerebral cortex. If signals can therefore be transmitted to the appropriate area of the brain, wirelessly, how could the brain tell whether the stimulus was real or not? The answer is that it cannot, and therefore the idea of a technologically generated Matrix is a scientific one.
If there are signals being transmitted into our brains from an external source, what is that source, and what is the purpose for which they have created this Matrix, this Maya, this world of illusion?  
In the movie Morpheus explains the Matrix to Neo in the following dialogue:
"The Matrix is a system, Neo. That system is our enemy. But when you're inside, you look around, what do you see? Businessmen, teachers, lawyers, carpenters. The very minds of the people we are trying to save. But until we do, these people are still a part of that system and that makes them our enemy. You have to understand, most of these people are not ready to be unplugged. And many of them are so inert, so hopelessly dependent on the system that they will fight to protect it."
So what is the Matrix according to the movie?
·         It’s the world that has been pulled over your eyes to blind you from the truth!

Essentially The Matrix was a computer generated world that had no basis in physical reality but was very real for the people who were interfaced with the computer that created this world. All the sensory data came from the computer and was interpreted by their brains as ‘real’, and therefore The Matrix became their reality. The idea is comparable to characters in a video game being programmed to think that they are ‘sentient’ and real; not being aware that their world is a computer generated one, whose reality is determined by the programmers not by themselves.
The reason for the machines with AI, artificial intelligence, to create The Matrix was to keep people sedated, unaware that they only existed to provide energy for the machines. When they expired physically they were liquefied and fed to the living humans who were similarly kept in a pod generating electricity for the machines. This is a very weak explanation for the existence of The Matrix in an otherwise intelligent movie. Any technology advanced enough to have intelligence and to be able to create The Matrix world could surely find much greater sources of energy with far less effort.
Since its release the movie has generated much dialogue and theorising that our world itself is a Matrix, that what we perceive to be reality is in reality an illusion. As mentioned previously in the article, as a religious philosophy this idea dates back thousands of years, so the moviemakers cannot be credited with originating the idea, just making it mainstream. The idea of visible and invisible worlds and dimensions is also to be found in The Bible. For example in Colossians 1 v 16 we read: For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible… The idea of a veil that separates the visible dimension from the invisible one is also a Biblical doctrine.
Isaiah 25 v 7: And he will destroy in this mountain (Mount Zion) the face of the covering cast over all people, and the veil that is spread over all nations.
The Bible tells us in the Old Testament book of Isaiah that all people and nations have a covering and a veil upon them that influences their perception of reality. What people believe to be the truth is far from the truth. Incidentally the movie, The Matrix borrowed heavily from the Bible without crediting it in any way. Since most people are ignorant of what is in the Bible, basing their view of it on second and third hand information, they cannot possibly see that the movie story is a Hollywood retelling of many major doctrines of the Bible such as the existence of the invisible world, and of the need for a Messiah, a Saviour without whom unplugging from the Matrix is an impossibility. Even naming of the city of the ‘free’ humans as Zion has been borrowed from the Bible, although in an inverted manner, because unlike the movie where the city of Zion is below, in the Bible the city of Zion is above, in the heavenly realms not inside the earth.
Hebrews 12 v 22: But ye are come unto mount Zion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem…
I want to conclude this segment that the Bible concurs that there is indeed a Matrix like deception that pervades our world and prevents people from seeing the truth. Morpheus informed Neo in the movie that ‘the Matrix is everywhere, and this idea is supported by the Bible, a network of evil energies envelops our world like a cocoon. The Bible also explains how this Matrix is generated, and why, and how we can be made free to see the REAL WORLD.
2 Corinthians 4 v 3: But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: 4. In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not (PLUGGED THEM INTO THE MATRIX), lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

End of Part 1


  1. Wonderful analysis of the Matrix movie and a great job on explaining how it's analogous to Biblical doctrines.

    I just saw the new Clash Of The Titans movie, as typical in many Hollywood productions, it is also full of subtle subliminal nuance and much metaphor. The theme is based on Greek mythology.

    Thanks for all the research you've been doing.

  2. Great analysis. I have taught the Matrix to high school Sunday school students with some success. The definitive reference on the film relative to the Christian faith can be found here:

    It contains several hundred scripture references, line by line and scene by scene. Someone has done their homework.