|Reviews for The Truth Within All Truths|
| Blue Teller chapter 1 . 6/5
I am thoroughly convinced that this is one of the most brilliant, wonderful fanfics - and stories in general - I have ever read. I wish there was a sequel from Alphonse's point of view. Hey, one can dream...
I am also thoroughly convinced that many people are going to dislike this a lot - some already do, I've seen the comments. It's mostly religion arguments though, so I wouldn't worry about it. It's like an official rule that atheists hate christian things. And the other way around too. Not all, of course, but 99% at least. I try not to. Hate atheistic things, I mean. I try to be fair, OBJECTIVE, about this. But it's, well... impossible sometimes.
Like here, people make fun of religion just because it's religion, and no other reason. It's difficult to get through to those people most of the time. People can preach about being tolerant and stuff but in cases like here it's just rubbish. You're either a christian, and you love it, or you're an atheist, or of some other religion, and then you hate it. Or at the very least cringe reading it. Without personal spiritual experience, you're not going to get it.
We just believe different things, and they're not going to be tolerant about it.
However, there is a couple of comments about Edward being an atheist and thus, not christian material. THAT is something that can be discussed. And it's a very interesting topic to explore, I believe.
While it is true - Edward straight-forward called himself an atheist - it's important to notice that it was in the beginning of 'Fullmetal Alchemist'. Literally, first chapter/episode of every series. And it what context? In argument against a brain-washed believer, Rose.
We all know that Father Cornello was a fake. What Rose said in defense of Letoism I swear has to be quotes or something, because it fits practically every monotheistic religion in existence. "Raise your prayer to God, and you shall be answered." "To know God is to know hope." And while most consider this Christianity-bashing from Hiromi Arakawa (and to be honest I don't think that's completely wrong, I mean she definitely has something at least against some religions... or at least, corrupted christian communities) I don't think it's an accurate image of what religion is about. Let's talk about Rose.
Rose, when she joined Leto's religious crowd, was broken emotionally. Her fiancee died and she wanted nothing more than for him to come back to life - a miracle. And Cornello promised her a miracle, in reward for being faithful. Here, we have the first clue of what was wrong with her attitude. He EXPECTED something specific in return, like a business transaction. She didn't "put her faith in God". She only believed Cornello could do something for her because she witnessed his tricks with the Philosopher Stone. That's how every tribal religion worked since the dawn of time; you want something from a god, you bargain with the "prophet", you pay, then it turns out you've been tricked.
That's not how Christianity works, though. The promise of Heaven is not a "reward" in a literal sense. You can do nothing, give nothing, to deserve Heaven. To put it in simple terms: you're saved if you believe because the Sacrifice had been done for you already. Your attitude towards life and service for God is not a part of the bargain but a consequence of a changed heart, pure desire to serve God because he's Holy and he knows best for you.
That is NOT Rose's attitude towards faith, whatever she claims.
When Edward and Alphonse - rightfully - destroy her hopes and take away what she believed in, she's understandably shattered. She has nothing to hold onto. And when she asks Edward what she's supposed to do, he says "I don't know. Move forward." He doesn't give her answers, which I like a lot.
Now let's move onto Edward.
Ed's attitude in the beginning of the series, towards religion as well as many other things, is bitter. And why wouldn't it be? His mother had been taken from him, and when he tried to get her back, he crashed and burned because he "flew too close to the sun", or as he said it himself, "stepped into God's territory". Now he's stuck restoring his only brother back to normal and suffering loss of two limbs, as well as serving in the military.
I'm not going to point out the obvious contradiction that a person who is supposedly an atheist talks about "God's territory", that's not important. What's important is that Ed has very specific reasons to reject any religion at that point in time; he believes there is no God worth of worship. He KNOWS that Truth exists, that supernatural forces are real. Alphonse is a walking soul for crying out loud! Ed's problem is not whether gods are real or not - his problem is that there is no God who would help them, and they have to do everything on their own.
But Ed's attitude changes through the series. Almost a 180 turn. Ed learns to trust people, trust friends, for support. He acknowledges that he can't do everything on his own, wishes for "a god's" help in dire moments (like when the baby was being born in Rush Valley, or when Ling Yao thought Ed's transmutation looks like he is praying). And most of all, he learns HUMILITY. That was the final lesson Truth gave him, what it was all about: "We're only human." When he gives his alchemy for Al in the end, he's no longer the same arrogant brat to smart-mouthed to Rose how pathetic her belief in miracles was. He changed.
To sum up this exhausting, loooong essay, about Edward Elric: he was a bitter atheist in the BEGINNING. But not in the END. There was plenty of religious references throughout the series to make that clear.
Now, FINALLY, my review of this story itself.
I generally avoid placing Christianity as a factor in fiction of all kind. Why? Because I'm aware that Christianity is so close to my heart, I wouldn't be able to ignore its existence alongside other gods, magic, mythology and other stuff. In fantasy, I prefer to create a system of its own for a given worlds. For instance, "Truth" would be the equivalent of God the Judge in Fullmetal Alchemist's universe. Because that's how I usually deal with religion in fiction, I was surprised how you tied real world's history into this universe. I mean, Ishvalans were supposed to be the Jews, extermination and all. In this story, the world went a different direction after real historic events, so Ishavans are not Jews at all.
At first, I was skeptical about what you were trying to do. It felt weird, imagining Fullmetal Alchemist in the real world. But I opted on the benefit of a doubt, and continued reading. I was surprised how neatly you tied real history with Xerxes, which kind of reminds me of Babylon. Then, you started on the spiritual side of things aaaaand...
...it was great. AMAZING. I don't know if you're a graduate from a Theology College or what, but it's just BRILLIANT.
You addressed Edward's doubts perfectly. I can SEE his train of thoughts and gradual change in belief and I can relate to him so well. I can FEEL his heart being touched by the Truth (and not the FMA Truth) and it feels like documentary of a real-life conversion.
Is this based on a real-life conversion? If not, sincere congratulations to you. I don't think I would be ever capable of such realistic portrayal of what conversion is like.
And the way Edward broke at the end was just... magnificent. It fits his character so well, being so much out of character for him. I am not kidding. The character development is extremely well-done.
This story, from the beginning to end, is simply GORGEOUS. It ties perfectly with real and FMA history, it keeps characters faithful to themselves, it has good continuity. Even details like that Alphonse found the Bible in the ruins of Xerxes! It's all just wonderful. Believe me, this is literally one of the best things I've ever read in my life. The Bible doesn't count, of course ;)
Overall, thank you. Thank you so much for writing this. I hope you can put so much emotion in your other stories, for it is something... beautiful.
Best wishes and God's Blessing,
-Blue Teller, a Christian, and a passionate writer
| agklover1221 chapter 1 . 4/2
this is the gretest story
| jonica77 chapter 1 . 3/8
Wow, this the loveliest fanfic I've ever read! And so encouraging! If you're interested please read my fanfic 'Killua's Reassurance'
| Guest chapter 1 . 2/26
I LAUGHED SO HARD WHILE READING THIS!
Oh my (pun intended) God, did you REALLY just convert EDWARD ELRIC into a CHRISTIAN?!
Al, you are one hell of a prophet if you can deter your brother's religious beliefs-Or lack therefore of.
And here I thought Ed would forever remain an atheist. XD
| ArtofthePlate chapter 1 . 5/16/2015
I originally found this on your DeviantArt page, but they don't let people without accounts write comments :(
I adore this story. This may sound wierd, but I sometimes fantasize about getting into a heated debate with Ed about Christian Faith vs Scientific Faith...This story keeps him in character throughout his conversion, I feel, and I like your emphasis on Al using logic to explain how the Bible makes sense. Thank you for writing this!
| Guest chapter 1 . 2/28/2015
That was so inspiring. It really shows what it feels like to be saved if you know what I mean :) I felt the exact same way when I found out about the Lord. Thank you
- guest without a fanfictions account
| Brenne chapter 1 . 1/27/2015
Wow! That was incredible! I love it! XD
| Gal chapter 1 . 10/15/2014
Okay, you get so many points for this. This is one of the best fan-fictions I've ever read, and I absolutely love that it's about Christianity. Reading it made me get choked up, and trust me, that is impressive in and of itself. (I've watched Up and many such other tear-jerkers many times without a hint of crying.) Thank you for writing this. I haven't read any of your other stories yet, but I am definitely going to now.
| JustBlossom chapter 1 . 4/7/2014
Wow, I really love this! I've always felt that Ed needed to realize he could never make up for his sins on his own, that he needed God's grace to be forgiven and let go of his guilt. Thank you so much for writing this :)
| Queen Bovine chapter 1 . 6/2/2013
Beautiful. Very spiritual. I personally believe that any person who does not trust in God, does not understand Him or the love He has for all of His children.
| Wolfi-Chan chapter 1 . 4/11/2013
Alright, what I can I say that so many have already said. First of all, this totally hit home with me. Being a Christian, lately I've been a little in a hole and this story really lifted my spirits and brough me back. I had shivers running up and down my spine, energy that pulsed through me, and I almost cried when reading this. (Not sad tears though) I've seen a couple Spiritual FMA fics relating to Christianity and there is only one other that was good, but its now second on the list. Everything seems very pausible, since I can confirm from a source that China does have Christianity in it. The characters never occured to be OOC to me and it was so beautifu lto read that I faved it even on DA. I loved that you stated it was a relationship with God (cause so many think of Christianity as a religion instead) and the small bits of doubt that Ed hd along the way, brilliant. I love the way you showed Ed's conversion and the notes Al had. Ed cryign was truly touching and I have personally started full-on crying one time when it can to accepting God completely, tears that have so many emotions to them. This is truly a work of art. God bless.
Keep on writing.
One last thing, it's funny that I've been having trouble recently due to events and I stumble upon your fic, which reminded me of who God was and everything. Thank your for writing this.
| ArtisticFantasy chapter 1 . 2/16/2013
oh my gosh this fanfic... this is the second time Ive read this after a while and it still affected me so profoundly. i love the connections you make between FMA and the stories in the Bible, its just absolutely brilliant, and as a christian myself it hits so close to home. I reckon truth was put as a mediator for alchemy when alchemists acted as god because of their immense power. many fics portray Truth as a heartless villain but i don't think that was the case at all, he was just carrying out the rules.
If Ed could ever be convinced to become "religious", this would be the way. everything in this fic is perfectly plausible, it fits so well within the FMA universe and every character is so in character, and it had the sweet addition of the Elric kids (Edwin, lol, I see what you did there! XD)
I really wish this was somehow canon, and maybe ill just make it my headcanon. it did occur to me that ed would make a great christian, with his stringent moral thinking and his immense respect for human life (which are the major reasons as to why he became my favourite fictional character.) It really comforts me to know also, that though FMA is forever fiction, Jesus is real and always there. this just makes me love FMA AND Christianity a bazillion times more than before, and I thank you for that. thank you for writing this so amazingly well. God Bless You!
| ImperialGuard202 chapter 1 . 11/8/2012
there's not much to say except that this was well done. loved how you introduced Christianity the the FMA universe in a creative way. Especially the idea of Jesus's sacrifice on the cross as equivalent exchange. very well done (bows to you).
| Guest chapter 1 . 9/15/2012
That was really, really awesome. I love it love it love it!
| Designation M chapter 1 . 8/6/2012
This. Was. Great! It was very well written and it proclaims the truth so well. It makes me happy to see Ed has finally found God and Jesus. Well done and God bless you.