ABOUT VIDMANTE JASUKAITYTE”˜S NOVEL “DIEVAS MIRSTA VIENISAS” (“GOD DIES ALONE”).
Prof. Elena Bukeliene,
“God dies alone” by Vidmante Jasukaityte is unique novel in many respects. First of all, the theme ““ the life of Jesus and his family, his mission and his death in the contexct of a very difficult epoch. It must have taken the writer a great deal of inner strenght, self-confidence, a special spiritual quality and, most probably, a vocation for this work to sustain her courage through the book. Any attempt to simplify the subjects and be superficial would appear as irresponsible adventurism and a profanation of eminent matters. This does not happen. Not only is the novel writen with talent but also with inspiration and deeply felt spiritual revelation. “God Dies Alone” captivaties by its authenticity, subtile inspiration, intimate warmth and intuitive psychological motivation.
Especialy important furthemore, the times of the novel: its historicity, and the philosophical motivation of Christianity. Regarding historical facts, the author describes of the rule of Herod the Great, that fates of his wives and children. In a remarkably interesting manier the writer analyses his inner states and, later, his son Herod Antipas”˜ misfortunes and complexes, the attitude of the governor of Judea Pontius Pilate and so on. A vivid imagination helps the author to create a solid and complete plot stucture. Without a flaw she conveys the biograpfy of Jesus, artistically and in detail describes Mary and Joseph”˜s fleeing from Herod, their life. Into the story line of Jesus”˜ family she entwines stori lines of his friends from Bethany: Lazarus, Mary and Martha. The author gives an interesting version of Judas: the earthly motyvation of his betrayal.
Judging from how much space and attention is given to esus and Mary it is obvious that the story revolves around them. Maru embodies the ideas of motherhood, self-sacrifice, suffering and love. More than that, she appears as a vital source of comfort and care for the humanity that spurts out where it is needed the most. Thewriter creaties a very andconvincing portrait of Mary as a human. We. brought up in the western Christian tradition, get a different view of the life of a simple woman from Nazareth who bore nine children as wel as of her divine mission. The mission of Mary as a mother is very sinificant, howeverit is no less important mto demonstratehow she tried to comprehend the calling on her son. She is the one to Joseph died without having understood that the Messiah would not be the one to liberate the Jews from the yoke of the Romans and make them the most glorified nation in the world. Mary, who had a more versatile mind, understood that the way of the liberation of the human soul her son had chosen would lead to God and Love rather than a bloody fight and inevitable death. She accepted the fate of Jesus as given by God, shared his suffering, and believed in its meaning and his resurrection. The two sides of Mary”˜s character ““ mother and the chosen and that looksa at this world from the perspective of eternity add mystery and mystical charm to her portrait so lovingly depicted by the writer.
The author, like Mary Magdalene, dares to take a very close look at the personality of Jesus and his life wich, according to her, was always lived “ž on the margin” between he natural and the supernatural. The author does not strive to retell the teaching of Christ that made the base for the most influential religion in the world. However, it is apparent that she endeavors to draw our attention to the trend of those teachingand the status of the Master. Jesus is extreme in what he demands: he justificies the one that is mistaken, but does not justify the one who leads a faulty life; patiently teaches the meslead, but is stern to hypocrities. The essence of man is truth, and authenticity. The conveys the dimension of perfection, expresses his yearning for and idieal personality, becoming ant examph of one himself.
The ideas the author states through the character of Christ have always been and still are essential to all of society. They make the ethical foundation for the coexistence, relations and tolerance between people and nations.
Dr. Gintaras BeresneviÄius
Institute of Culture, Art and Philosophy
At first sight the two-part novel astounds you bt its volume and theme ( is there anything new to say?). HYowever, words and thoughts are abundant; the eternally biblical events when looked at in metaphizical light have much unknown, unnoticedand overooked to real. We get a new book of a new style, even though in the beginning it seems to be “only” a novel about Jesus and the Holy Family. Because the author”˜s religious, professional and, of course, literary competence it is a very powerful and wel-written book. Moreover, unlike many modern writers who write on biblical subjects, V.Jasukaityte knows what she is writing about. A specialists of religious studies, I did not find any faults, on the contrary, all the religious details stuck to each other perfectly and made the base for a beautiful literary palace.
The novel is eclectiks: it encompasses Hermes Trismegistus, Isis and Jesus. Nevertheless, the author manages to keep the balance and not to slide into swamps of occultism. She manages not to get lost in this very complicated subject. We may call this book a metapfysical and religious novel rather than abstractly “spiritual”. The book is substantiated and that is its main value. It has an auhentic story line and a continuous metapfysical perspective. The comparison of Isis and Mary and inserting pf Osiris and Horus into the field of Christianity is justified be the line of religious experience drawn by the author. Tyhis truly genuine and identifiable experience justifies the miscellany. We often forget that experiences should be connected with the texts. Moreover, the gospel is not a dogmatic fairytale, but a reminder of what you do and how you treat God and those near you.
That novel has two target reader groups: men and women. Through words and quotations the writer tries to reach the rational nerve of men that requires a reliously judicious way with words. Men need explanations and the bigger part of the novel contains those explanations. Women are considerably better at recognition, which in this book is determined by religious experiences, crucial to Christianity. And it doesn”˜t matter that they are brought to life, using Egyptian myths ar Hellenistic syntheses. Today it may be even more effective to many than theological tractates and is only a different way to the same destination.
The book is a challening and pwerful novel, metaphysical novel.
Dr. Phil. Vilius Guzauskis
Head of “Homo liber” publishing house
Lithuanian literary critics greeted this new novel by Vidmante Jasukaityte as an outstanding phenomen of their cultural life. The book was presented and well received at the Science Academy. As Doloresa Kazragyte, a famous national actress, pointed out in the discussion weekly magazine “Nemunas”: “This novel is a miracle of Lithuanian literature. I have real many books about the life of Christ, but neither of them compares to what V. Jasukaityte has written”. A nationally renowned specialist of religion Gintaras Bresnevicius highly estimated the book from both thematic and artistic standpoints.
Regarding its subject the novel is rather specific: the historical period of t birth of Christianity, the geography and history of Jewich land. The author feels at home on the banks of Jordan river. She places her story into a convincing geographical dimensions and welds the traditions and moral principles into a continous picture of a distant past in a distant country. However, to my mind, the success of the novel lies in the ability of the author to convey the eternal flow of exsistential values. Various resourses of human exsistence come t life in a distant historic epoch. The majority ofr the reviewers of the book very vell evaluated the emotional suggestiveness of historical characters, especially negative ones, and the synthesis of the describes events and experiences.
The fact that the reader is riveted to a widely known story by the author”˜s artistics resourcefulness also proves the quality of this writing. The writer is so assertive that it does not matter to the reader whether from the Cabala or Egyptian wisdom she draws all that helps her create a complete chronology and in intricate story line. The immense amount of information that the author has accumulated is masterfully woven into the artistic fabric.
In conclusion, this novel-mystery is significant for its universal qualities that give prominence to the ethical and phylosophical ideals of Christianity.It is especially urgent to societies that have experienced the atheistic ideology of Soviets. However, it is no less important to the people that independentl and consciosly seek spiritual development. The novel deserves to be called a mystery that helps to reinforce Christian values in 21st century.