I'm currently reading this amazing book written by Michael O'Brien entitled A Landscape With Dragons. In the beginning chapters, it talks about something that J. R. R. Tolkien called "sub-creation". Mr. O'Brien says that "By this he means that man, reflecting his divine Creator, is endowed with gifts to incarnate invisible realities in forms that make them understandable." I find this really interesting. When you read a book for the first time, you automatically envision the characters in one particular way. This happens through the way the characters would react to certain situations, interact with others in the story, and how they were portrayed by the author. Sometimes, our view of a character will change as the story progresses. For example, when first introduced to Brian Burke, one of the main charactors in the John Paul 2 High Series, I thought of him as a naive homeschooler (I'm homeschooled too, by the way, so don't think I'm attacking homeschooling. I'm just making a point.) who was oftentimes arrogant and treated girls with scorn. And sometimes this was true. But as the series continued, his behaviors changed in subtle ways that I often didn't notice until later on. Then I would think, "Hey, this guy isn't so bad after all." I think that's the sign of a good author; they have the ability to change people's perspectives. This is all part of our gift to sub-create.
Another part of sub-creation is our ability to relate our lives and world to those of fictional characters. I don't know about you guys, but I would give anything to be an elf. Some people may prefer to be a Narnian, or maybe a Jedi. The only people I know who are perfectly content as an inhabitant of earth are those who don't read fantasy. Just an observation. Something else Michael O'Brien says is "In fact it is the true realm of Faerie, a state of mind or being in which things become ultimately 'more real', distinct, and focused into their true form."
Well, I hope you enjoyed my ramblings. I tend to do that. ;) So long!