A Sensitive Issue

Discuss the series, characters and episodes.
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A Sensitive Issue

Post by The Chef » Sun Apr 20, 2008 8:44 am

I must say that to me - as a christian - Road to Avonlea and All Creatures Great & Small are the best series ever made. RTA has everything, it inspires, has moral lessons, life-lessons and a lot more. Also because of the family values and the great sense of community.

This being said, I want to raise an issue that all Avonlea lovers should examine sometime, when they watch the whole series again. And I want to say beforehand that I hesitated raising it because some may consider it to be a bit farfetched. Anyway ...

It seems to me that a lot of movies and series also have a 'negative' side, and although at first I thought Road to Avonlea was not subject to that, to my dismay I realized that you can also find it in Road to Avonlea (RTA).

What is it? Don't be shocked ... but as a former occultist I recognize certain 'handsigns', and I have noticed that at least two actors in the series - R.H. Thompson, Jackie Burroughs - were doing it: the horned goat sign, commonly known as the sign of satan. Now I have often seen behind the scene shots from other series, and I often saw an actor ask: "How do I hold my hand; where do I look"? So in many cases the actors are steered in holding their hand a certain way, and they do not always have freedom here. That means that the actors possibly don't even know that when they are asked to hold their hand a certain way, it actually is a sign.

Before I placed this message I asked around and my suspicion was confirmed by several other (christian) viewers who have also watched the series when it was aired in our country. The series was broadcasted by our national evangelical broadcasting company.

Don't believe me? In one instance R.H. Thompson was doing it six times in a row, I don't know what episode it was. There are many more instances.

Now this doesn't mean I don't watch the show over and over again, because I love it, but it saddens me that the negativity has even krept in wonderful series like this one.

For those who don't know the sign of the goat of Mendez, or the horned goat sign, click this link (I didn't want to embed it in this foum):

http://www.boingboing.net/images/satannnnnn.jpg

For people who realy are good at analyzing, and are able to watch frame by frame, watch the episode where Felix and Izzy are walking along the shore, Izzy with her bike next to her, when she points at a cloud which has a certain shape. When she stretches out her hand, and you freeze it at the very last frame, you can see her giving the sign. If you watch it at normal speed you almost can't see it. She gives the sign at the very last moment, which is why it is almost undetectable. With these things I always ask myself, why are they doing it, and what do the makers of the series think to accomplish with it.

It is the same with a lot of Hollywood movies, where the number six can often be seen or heard in a series of three times in a row, sometimes well cloaked with a minute or so between each instance, but sometimes also very obvious. It can be that first somone says "six months", next someone throws a dice that lands on the number six, and then you see a clock which tells you it's six o'clock. Or you see a housenumber 6. It really saddens me that RTA is not entirely free of these things.

But don't take my word for it, simply watch the series afresh and draw your own conclusions. It is not my aim to put a damper on the series, as I said I still watch it and ignore the things I mentioned, I want to raise some awareness.
A man fell in a deep pit and suffered greatly. A Buddhist said: 'Meditate and ignore your circumstances.' A Hindu said: 'You must have bad karma, you deserve your fate.' But Jesus had pity on the man, climbed down and rescued him.

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The sign is very close to another

Post by jeremiah2911 » Wed Apr 30, 2008 3:09 pm

Not to play "devil's advocate" or anything. :shock: I am a strong Christian too. I teach at an elementary school and we use the the sign for I love you during grandparent's day. It is the same as this devil sign except the thumb is out. :idea: I caught myself doing it wrong this week.
Now I am just scared to do the sign at all. In some cases could people be getting the sign wrong?
Just a thought. I don't have them very often. :lol:
For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

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Re: The sign is very close to another

Post by The Chef » Wed Apr 30, 2008 3:32 pm

Yes I understand what you're saying, and you may be correct. But is the 'love-sign' not slightly different? Isn't the thumb also stretched out with the 'I love you sign?'

I also want to state that I'am not actively 'looking for signs' trying to spot evil behind every tree. That would be unhealthy for the mind. It's just that I noticed it a few times (knowing the sign and all), and that's when I started to look more actively. And as I said, it doesn't spoil it for me: I still enjoy watching the series.

And of course, if you make the sign, and in your heart you say 'love' with that sign, it means love, and you shouldn't hesitate using it.

I also have to say that I waited anxiously for the reactions, if any, because I can fully understand that this issue sounds a bit 'over the top' :wink:

It's just the fact that I know that actors get the most detailled instructions on how to look, where to look, and when to look where, how to hold their hands, or even spread their fingers. That's why it got me thinking. I do realize that this could also be a case of 'digging to deep' into matters though. But you can't help noticing, can you?

I once asked an elderly sister about this who also watched the series, she noticed it too.

Ed
jeremiah2911 wrote:Not to play "devil's advocate" or anything. :shock: I am a strong Christian too. I teach at an elementary school and we use the the sign for I love you during grandparent's day. It is the same as this devil sign except the thumb is out. :idea: I caught myself doing it wrong this week.
Now I am just scared to do the sign at all. In some cases could people be getting the sign wrong?
Just a thought. I don't have them very often. :lol:
A man fell in a deep pit and suffered greatly. A Buddhist said: 'Meditate and ignore your circumstances.' A Hindu said: 'You must have bad karma, you deserve your fate.' But Jesus had pity on the man, climbed down and rescued him.

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One last thing.

Post by jeremiah2911 » Wed Apr 30, 2008 3:54 pm

I don't think it is over the top. There is so much in-your-face evil in the entertainment industry, I would find it hard to believe that there weren't covert operations going on also.

The only time I have ever heard of the sign before had something to do with a Beatles album (a little before my time), so it is always good to be aware.
For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

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Re: One last thing.

Post by The Chef » Wed Apr 30, 2008 4:03 pm

You're right. I once watched a DVD about the use of the number 6 in Hollywood movies. That documentary revealed how the number 6 is often used in series of three, sometimes openly, sometimes very subtle. Some movies do have these things put into them on purpose (to condition people or to desensitize them).

But it is so hard to believe that it could also seep into series with good family values. Well, a series such as RTA I mean, hehe. Although these would be the perfect vehicle to condition those people who don't watch bad movies/series.

Yeah, well the beatles were into the occult of course, so no surprise there.
jeremiah2911 wrote:I don't think it is over the top. There is so much in-your-face evil in the entertainment industry, I would find it hard to believe that there weren't covert operations going on also.

The only time I have ever heard of the sign before had something to do with a Beatles album (a little before my time), so it is always good to be aware.
A man fell in a deep pit and suffered greatly. A Buddhist said: 'Meditate and ignore your circumstances.' A Hindu said: 'You must have bad karma, you deserve your fate.' But Jesus had pity on the man, climbed down and rescued him.

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Post by Timothy » Sat May 03, 2008 7:09 am

The horned goat sign has also been embraced by heavy metal music fans. As a result, I think the sign is perceived as a heavy metal/Rock music sign in popular culture. In addition to having an occultist covert meaning, it is now thrown out liberally by thousands at rock concerts.

It's possible that Jackie and RH did it as a joke to parody these fans. There was a lot of joking around among the RTA crew, like when Sarah and Mag were imitating popular wrestlers of the time.

I don't think that a director or producer could instruct Jackie to show this sign in her performance unless she felt it was right for the character. She even went as far as to bite a director following a disagreement.

I would find it interesting if Avonlea's own covert organization, the Knights of P.E.I., threw out this sign.

In regard to the Beatles, the reference where Lennon was throwing the sign behind McCartney's head was actually a drawing used on the cover of Yellow Submarine. While the Beatles dabbled in the occult, this particular instance was a cartoon image that they had little control over.

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Post by Wild Roses » Sat May 03, 2008 3:28 pm

LMM herself didn't identity as Christian (something that still surprises me because she married a minister) so the fact that the series uses Pagan overtones or symbols doesn't surprise me. (As I grew up in Christianity, and now, don't identify as Christian, please don't accuse me of being a Satan worshipper as I will more than willingly give my credentials.)

LMM's own books have very Pagan overtones and imagery to them, especially the Emily books as well. I haven't read her journals yet, but I know she discusses her lifelong fascination with the "occult" herself. This became particularly accute after her friend, Frederica died, and she tried to communicate with Frederica several times after Frederica died. Apparently, she believes Frederica did communicate back to her at least once.

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Post by The Chef » Sat May 03, 2008 4:03 pm

True the sign is used broadly and has several meanings. I cannot and will not draw any conclusions on the how and why the sign slipped into the series. As you menioned, it could be a joke, why not. As for the question whether it was done on purpose or not (a sort of slip of the hand), there's at least one instance where RH doest it 6 times in a row. I'll try to find the scene so you can look at it.

As for the Knights of P.E.I., I happen to know a few things about masonry, and I must say that the whole Knights thing, with the dresses and regelia and all, in my view was used to make fun of the masons :lol: They did a great job with that. Also with the waving of the hand behind ones head. Hilarious, hehe. No that was all harmless fun to me. However, one of the more obvious masonic signs is the sign where you see a man putting his left- or right hand in his jacket, hiding it from sight. The left- or right hand is used, depending on what "path" the person "travels" in the occult.

Here is an example

You can also find pictures of Karl Marx giving the sign, and many others who were masons.
Timothy wrote:The horned goat sign has also been embraced by heavy metal music fans. As a result, I think the sign is perceived as a heavy metal/Rock music sign in popular culture. In addition to having an occultist covert meaning, it is now thrown out liberally by thousands at rock concerts.

It's possible that Jackie and RH did it as a joke to parody these fans. There was a lot of joking around among the RTA crew, like when Sarah and Mag were imitating popular wrestlers of the time.

I don't think that a director or producer could instruct Jackie to show this sign in her performance unless she felt it was right for the character. She even went as far as to bite a director following a disagreement.

I would find it interesting if Avonlea's own covert organization, the Knights of P.E.I., threw out this sign.

In regard to the Beatles, the reference where Lennon was throwing the sign behind McCartney's head was actually a drawing used on the cover of Yellow Submarine. While the Beatles dabbled in the occult, this particular instance was a cartoon image that they had little control over.
Last edited by The Chef on Sat May 03, 2008 4:53 pm, edited 3 times in total.
A man fell in a deep pit and suffered greatly. A Buddhist said: 'Meditate and ignore your circumstances.' A Hindu said: 'You must have bad karma, you deserve your fate.' But Jesus had pity on the man, climbed down and rescued him.

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Post by The Chef » Sat May 03, 2008 4:16 pm

I see. I haven't read her books. But RTA has inspired me to buy the works of Sir Walter Scott, you know, "Breathes there the man"... By the way, this poem was misquoted in RTA. Scott was quite a character. He was not only a poet, he also wrote a commentary on the Book of Revelation. Too bad he finally ended up writing only to pay off his huge debt.

It's not strange for a person longing for messages from the other side after a dear one has passed on. Even Hilleray Clinton claims to have communicated with Eleanor Roosevelt. But I didn't know this about LMM. I know the desire for mystery, I was in the occult myself too, about 20 years ago.

Why would I accuse anyone of being a Satan worshipper? Unfortunately many people are prone to think too subjectively; hence they draw conclusions too soon.

I didn't know that LMM had an interest in paganism, but now you mention it, it could explain why there are a few episodes wich have a slightly darker undercurrent. I read somewhere that the actress who played Anne of Green gables didn't want to be part of RTA because she felt it was too dark?
Wild Roses wrote:LMM herself didn't identity as Christian (something that still surprises me because she married a minister) so the fact that the series uses Pagan overtones or symbols doesn't surprise me. (As I grew up in Christianity, and now, don't identify as Christian, please don't accuse me of being a Satan worshipper as I will more than willingly give my credentials.)

LMM's own books have very Pagan overtones and imagery to them, especially the Emily books as well. I haven't read her journals yet, but I know she discusses her lifelong fascination with the "occult" herself. This became particularly accute after her friend, Frederica died, and she tried to communicate with Frederica several times after Frederica died. Apparently, she believes Frederica did communicate back to her at least once.
A man fell in a deep pit and suffered greatly. A Buddhist said: 'Meditate and ignore your circumstances.' A Hindu said: 'You must have bad karma, you deserve your fate.' But Jesus had pity on the man, climbed down and rescued him.

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Post by Timothy » Sun May 04, 2008 7:37 am

An interesting thing about Montgomery is that she was influenced by island lore, ghost stories, and tales of the supernatural from an early age. Prince Edward Island is rich in these stories that were passed down from generation to generation. Some of these stories are interwoven into the narrative of her works. The compilation 'Among the Shadows' showcases some of these stories.

I don't rule out the possibility that this sign was being intentionally used in the series. Ironically, I found that RH Thomson was in a movie from 1981 called Ticket to Heaven, playing the role of a 'cult-deprogrammer.'

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Post by Wild Roses » Sun May 04, 2008 10:50 am

I didn't know that LMM had an interest in paganism, but now you mention it, it could explain why there are a few episodes wich have a slightly darker undercurrent. I read somewhere that the actress who played Anne of Green gables didn't want to be part of RTA because she felt it was too dark?
I haven't heard anything about that, but I know Emily of New Moon (tv series) goes even further (and is much darker in tone) in exploring Paganism.

I forget how else LMM was interested in Paganism throughout her life, but it goes just beyond her friend dying. She documented her exploration of Paganism throughout her entire life in diaries and she definitely always has a New-Agey bent to beliefs and ideas.

Not to mention, she was severely critical of Christianity her entire life. Her disdain is well documented in her diaries, letters to friends, and, to some extent, her novels.The only reason why she married the minister is because she wanted children, and later said if she knew he suffered from clinical depression before she got married, she wouldn't have married him. [/quote]

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Post by The Chef » Sun May 04, 2008 4:32 pm

Explains a lot. She probably felt restricted by christianity, and she has my sympathy, who wouldn't feel bad when they know it only as a set of laws pressing down on them from outside, while it has to come sponaneously from the heart. Anyway, if she was so heavily into new age thinking then I must say the series are relatively free from it.
A man fell in a deep pit and suffered greatly. A Buddhist said: 'Meditate and ignore your circumstances.' A Hindu said: 'You must have bad karma, you deserve your fate.' But Jesus had pity on the man, climbed down and rescued him.

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Post by hobbie » Mon May 05, 2008 8:16 am

I'm really astonished by what i'm reading here....I thought that i've seen a lot of details from the show...
I don't think that a director or producer could instruct Jackie to show this sign in her performance unless she felt it was right for the character. She even went as far as to bite a director following a disagreement. !
Sounds interesting,Timothy did that happen on the set of RTA??

BTW Piacre,welcome to the forum!We're neighbours :wink: Hartelijk welkom!
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Post by The Chef » Mon May 05, 2008 5:45 pm

Aha, een Belg. Dat ze daar ook RTA kijken :wink:

Doe Lambiekske de groeten van me!

Translation for the sake of courtesy:

Aha, a Belgian. Who would think they watch RTA overthere too :wink:

Say hello to Lambique for me (that is actually a famous Belgian comic-book character).
A man fell in a deep pit and suffered greatly. A Buddhist said: 'Meditate and ignore your circumstances.' A Hindu said: 'You must have bad karma, you deserve your fate.' But Jesus had pity on the man, climbed down and rescued him.

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Post by hobbie » Tue May 06, 2008 2:36 am

yes we do !! :D the whole show of AOGG and RTA was broadcasted twice on Viataya.It was a great success.
I will never forget the days of my youth when the waves rippled between my toas....Hetty king

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