by Michael Scott
Symbolism, Imagery, Allegory
The Elder World of Danu Talis sounds like a beautiful dream. As Dr. John Dee tells Josh, "in the ancient past, the earth was a paradise. It had an incredibly advanced technology, but the air was clean, the water pure, the seas unpolluted" (37.49). Sounds a little like the Garden of Eden, right?
So what happened to bring the world into the state it is in now? Let's hear from Dee again:
The Elders were driven out from this paradise by the foolish superstition of the mad Abraham and the spells in the Codex. The Elders did not die—it takes a lot of time to kill one of the Elder Race—they simply waited. They knew that someday mankind would come to its senses and call them back to save the earth. (37.51)
Wait a minute, driven out of paradise? That definitely sounds like we could be talking about the Garden of Eden. After all, Adam and Eve were driven out of their paradise for a foolish mistake. These similarities suggest we should think of the story of the Elder World of Danu Talis is a kind of metaphor for The Fall, or Adam and Eve's fall from grace. In both stories, there is a beautiful natural paradise, and mankind totally destroys it.
Then, there's the second part of that quote. We learn that the Elders didn't die, precisely. They're just biding their time until the humans call them back to be their savior. Hmm. Savior? That sounds an awful lot like the Christian figure Jesus Christ.
Now we're getting somewhere: is this whole Danu Talis story really just a retelling of the Bible?
Not quite. It's an allegory, which means that as a story, it has symbolic meaning. The characters and events involved in Danu Talis and The Alchemyst are more than what they seem. And they just might have Biblical parallels.
So are Sophie and Josh the saviors the world has been waiting for, or do they represent the humans who fell from grace? Remember that it is Dr. John Dee who is telling the story to Josh in an attempt to tempt the teen to join his side. Is he The Alchemyst's equivalent to the Garden of Eden's serpent?
As you continue through the series, the answers to these questions may become clear. But remember, it's an allegory. There's always room for interpretation.