Our Values and Beliefs

If you’re visiting Beneath the Tangles for the first time, the reaction you might be having to our website is…wut?  The convergence of Christian spirituality and anime might not be obvious to most, but we believe that there’s an inherent value in the blogging we do, both for believers in Christianity and those who aren’t.  We invite you to take a look at our main core values and beliefs on this site, listed below, to give you an idea of what we’re about and why we do what we do.

Christianity

All of the writers on this site are followers of Christ.  But for those of you that have a negative view of Christianity, we ask that for the moment, you toss aside everything you know about Christians.  Throw away the hypocrisy, judgment, bullying, and hatred that you’ve encountered and see what we’re about.  While we have different denominational backgrounds and varied experiences, as well as differences in less significant theological points of our faiths, we all believe in the same critical points, including the belief that all humans are sinners in need of redemption and that God, the creator of the Universe, sent his son, Jesus, in human form to the earth where he died as an atoning sacrifice for our sins and arose from the grave, that in our belief we may be forgiven, receive the Holy Spirit, and gain eternal salvation as the gracious gift of God.

Religion

While the writers here believe that Christianity is the one and only true way, we welcome readers of all other religious beliefs (and those who don’t have a religion) to join us in conversation on the blog.  We are respectful of all faiths and open to all beliefs and questions to our faith (or regarding religion in general).  This blog is meant to be safe place for religion to be discussed without the worry of judgment or condemnation.

Humanity

The culture takes the point of view, perhaps without explicitly saying so, that humanity is generally and mostly “good,” that our motivations and works usually come from well-meaning hearts.  While we’re very capable of good works, and though humans do a lot of wonderful things in the world, our writers believe that within, we’re all sinners.  This unholiness creates a barrier between humans and the holy and perfect God; we don’t deserve to be in His very presence.  Hell is an actual place, and it is where people are cast to be away from God’s presence.  But God offers salvation through His own sacrifice, as mentioned in the Christianity section above.  Part of our mission here is to deliver this message to those who are unaware.

Bible

The writers of Beneath the Tangles take the Holy Bible as authoritative, written over thousands of years by writers inspired by God.  As a collection of 66 books, scripture contains many different kinds of literature – history, poetry, and letters, to name a few, and must be read with contextual understanding.  Still, it’s also one cohesive whole, and right from the first chapter through the last, tells the story of God’s love and redemption for mankind.  We frequently point toward scripture in our blog posts.

Anime

We understand that many Christians disavow anime, along with other forms of media they at best dismiss, and at worst find vile.  While we’re careful to take in the wide range of sensitivities that Christians have, particularly through our recommendations, we also believe that anime can be a beautiful expression of creativity that entertains, leads us to think and act, and which can tell stories that help reveal the greater story of God and humankind.  Anime is not evil, nor should Christians who consume it feel unchristian simply because they tune in.

Missions

Our writers believe that it is the call of every Christian to tells others about the gospel story, or the story of God’s redemption of humankind through Jesus Christ.  This website helps to tell that story through discussion of significant parts of the gospel, including the ideas of grace, sin, justification, mercy, and transformation, within posts that discuss some of our favorite anime and manga.  Beneath the Tangles is a ministry as much as it is a blog.

12 thoughts on “Our Values and Beliefs

  1. This is perhaps the most interesting take on anime that I’ve come across. I’m a Christian, a more passive one. I’ve never really thought that deeply about anime. While I do believe that every story has some aspect of morality and good, I’ve always thought of it as just being part of human nature. Your interpretation and attempt to look at things from a religious standpoint is novel. Looking forward to reading ( though at this point I find your list a bit overwhelming. >_<)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for the kind words! You know, as I see it, it’s just natural for us to find themes about human nature and godly nature in most any fictional material. They reflect our lives, our culture, our condition – and all that is connected to the story of humanity and of God’s relationship with us. So although the idea of looking into anime through a Christian lens is a bit novel, it’s also really just another part of looking for God in our world in general.

      As for anime, if you’re ever in need of a recommendation, we’ll surely offer one (or five)!

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      1. Thanks. Just started the S1 of SoA.

        I need a bit of reflection time ~_<. There are things I want to share about what you just said. Can't really get a firm grasp of my thoughts just yet though.

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        1. Sword Art Online? There’s lots of ups and downs in SAO, but at the least, it’s a very entertaining series.

          I’d love to hear your thoughts – feel free to comment again or to email me (beneath.the.tangles AT gmail.com) sometime if you want to discuss further.

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  2. Thank you so much for this site! As a homeschool student who has just begun their foray into anime,I was very excited to find a community of Christians who are passionate about their faith, and love anime as well. I’ve been keeping up with SAO a lot, but I’m starting to look into Attack on Titan, Pandora Hearts, and Black Rock Shooter. I would appreciate any and all recommendations, especially those that younger children can watch, as I have some of my more conservative friends becoming interested in anime as well. 🙂

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    1. Thanks for connecting with us, Sam! I’ll point you toward Christian Anime Alliance, which is a thriving community of believers and has a long list of series reviews. You can also look at our recommendation pages under the “Christians and Anime” tab on the site menu.

      Besides those in our recommendations pages, other family-friendly recs I would make include most titles in the Studio Ghilbi library (ex. Spirited Away, Kiki’s Delivery Service, My Neighbor Totoro); Chihayafuru; and The Girl Who Leapt Through Time.

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    2. Welcome to the wonderful world of anime!!! i have to warn you that the gore in Attack on Titan is REALLY intense its good if you can stomach it, but I thought you should know. I’d second Christian Anime Alliance for recommendations. I’d also second all of their recommendations here https://beneaththetangles.com/christian-anime-recommendations/ due to the fact that i’ve already loved them or they’re on my to-watch list.

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  3. In my strange little journey posting regularly on this site for the past several months, I have learned that you guys are easily the most tolerant and amazing group I’ve ever met. I have more than a passing interest in Christianity both because there seems to be truth to it and because it oddly parallels my own spiritual experiences.

    Debating the principles of your faith, occasionally quite literally acting as Devil’s advocate, has been some of the best fun I’ve ever had. It releases the stress from law school and exposes me to new perspectives on my favorite entertainment medium. :}

    Thanks all!

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  4. Really appreciate the warning against thinking that watching anime, and/or anime itself, is somehow ‘unchristian’ or ‘evil’; reminds me how I first came to realise that morality in art can only lie with the creator and recipient and not within the work itself – that was through Oscar Wilde, who, while hardly a Christian, made a powerful point about there not being moral or immoral literature in Dorian Grey.

    Watching anime only becomes ‘unchristian’ if you yourself act unchristian as you watch it. Not that some temptations shouldn’t be avoided (I wonder how many Christians have watched the artistically spectacular yet horrendously erotic video to Teddyloid’s ME!ME!ME!); it’s how we respond to the smaller temptations that hide within even the nicest looking shows. Thus, just as Christ was tempted in every way known to man, we can continue to emulate Christ by resisting any temptation to sin from anime and instead finding ways to come closer to God through it. 🙂

    I’ll be regularly thanking God that this community of Christian anime-lovers exists in the way it does.

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  5. First and foremost, I would like to offer my sincerest gratitude to the founding members of Beneath the Tangles for having created such a website; one, because of the sole effort, and two, because to know there are Christians out there that believe wholly in God and His truth AND can appreciate anime at the same time is something that is strangely really reassuring to me. I can’t lie: I’m searching for some kind of… childish yet sophisticated, wild yet ordered passion in anime, a beautiful miracle (strangely enough, I know). And of course, this would be after giving it up a while ago… being honest, because of Naruto, doing research into its meaning and finding it personally too conflicting, which ended up disencouraging me as to all the rest. Just…being able to have memories of the surprise without the compromise. Being able to discuss anime with people who understand that there’s sometimes a lot more to it than meets the eye.
    David G.

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    1. Thanks for the kind words. I hope you’ll continue to join us as we all kind of journey into anime as part of our personal journeys of faith.

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