The chapters from 12 to 20 in the book “The Martyred” by Richard Kim are connected by one general topic – the concept of truth. Each character of the story has his own position and tries to define the truth taking into consideration personal concerns and ideas.
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The narrator of the story, Captain Lee, aims at defining whether Mr. Shin tries to “run away from the truth… or, hide it from the others” (Kim 60). In his turn, Mr. Shin identifies himself as a guardian of the truth (Kim 61) and makes Colonel Chang believe that “this notion of self-righteousness… gives him the halo of serenity, even of pride” (Kim 67).
It is not a secret that the goal of many people is to find out the truth and make it available to others. Unfortunately, some people just do not want to know the truth, someone may not care about the truth, and there is also a group of people, who cannot identify where the truth is.
These chapters help to comprehend how the search of truth may be organized and what it can lead to. The main characters of the book become closer to the cherished truth. As soon as they get to know more, they face more challenges as they realize that they are not ready for it or that they expect something else.
In general, the chapters under analysis make the reader believe that truth is unpredictable and not always as pleasant as it is expected. This part of the book teaches people to use appropriate methods treating the truth. The military sphere, as well as religion, may have nothing in common with the truth. Still, the relations, which are developed within the frames of these spheres, may be considerably improved or completely destroyed by means of the truth and its ability to affect people, their decisions, and actions.
Questions about the Reading
1. What does it mean to guard the truth on the example of Mr. Shin?
The answer to this question makes the reader to think over two issues. First, it is necessary to think over the reasons of why people want to hide the truth. Second, it is important to evaluate the outcomes when many people find out that the truth is hidden by some reasons. People have the right to do everything they want with the truth, still, when the truth may influence the lives of other people, many other aspects should be taken into consideration.
2. What is the difference in the situations when people do not know the truth and may not want to know the truth?
This question requires the analysis of Mr. Shin’s behavior and the responsibilities he has. He has several rules to be followed regarding his responsibilities in front of his faith, his colleagues, his followers, and his own concerns. It is hard for an ordinary person to know the truth and think about any possible ways this truth being properly delivered to other people.
3. Does Christianity impose unexpected and, sometimes, unpleasant responsibilities upon its believers?
This question is important because it touches upon religion and social issues. On the one hand, many people cannot understand how religion may guide human lives. On the other hand, some people cannot understand how it is possible to live and not to have faith. These two controversies cause many discussions.
Answering this question, it is possible to use the examples of Mr. Shin and Captain Lee, Park and his father, Colonel Chang and Chaplain Koh. These duets demonstrate different attitudes to the same situations and prove that each of them has a sense and several proofs.
Kim, Richard, E. The Martyred. New York, NY: Penguin Books, 2011. Print.