Reading Group Guide
Daughter of God and Da Vinci Code
Which book offers the better explanation of the Goddess in human spirituality and the reasons for her evolution to the male-dominated religions of today? Why?
Both books have a prominent woman at the heart of the secret that the Vatican wants to suppress. Who are the women in each book and how do they differ? How are they the same?
Both books are about the search for the Holy Grail. In neither book is the Grail an actual cup. What is the "Grail" searched for in each book?
In both books, a powerful church official wants control of the "Grail" in order to provide power for what they consider the "true faith." What clerical rank do the men have in each book?
Each book has a prominent character who has an awesome family secret. Who are the characters and what is their secret?
Match the following excerpts to the appropriate book:
- "I thought Constantine was a Christian," Xxxxxxxxxx said.
"Hardly," Yyyyyyyyy scoffed. "He was a lifelong pagan who was baptized on his deathbed, too weak to protest. In Constantine’s day, Rome’s official religion was sun worship—the cult of Sol Invictus, or the Invincible Sun—and Constantine was its head priest.
- "But Constantine is known as the first Christian emperor." Xxxxxxxxxx said.
"Only on his deathbed," Yyyyyyyyy said. "Sol Invictus, the Sun God was his main deity until the last hours of his life. For most of his life, Christianity was a political power tactic for Constantine, a method of governing rather than a religion."
Who is speaking? Who is listening?
- Match the following excerpts to the appropriate book:
- "There was absolutely no agreement in the Christian Church that Jesus was to be worshipped on an equal basis as God. Indeed, you could find a lot of solid evidence that Jesus himself would not be happy with this."
- "Until that moment in history, Jesus was viewed by His followers as a mortal prophet. . . a great and powerful man, but a man nonetheless. A mortal."
"Not the Son of God?"
Who is speaking? Who is listening?
- Do you see other similar passages in both books?
- What is the profession of the male protagonist in both books?
- After reading one of the books, do you have a feeling you know what is going to happen -- before it does -- in the other book? Which scenes?
- Both male protagonists are framed for murder. But aside from this, what else motivates the two men to continue their search for the "Grail?" Do you see a change in their motivations?
- The female leads in both books are detectives of sorts. How are they alike? How are they different?
- What do you think would happen if the "Grail" in both books were fully released to the world? Do you see any difference in the effects of this release?
- Both books claim the founders of Christianity, particularly Constantine, suppressed the female elements and hijacked it for men. Which book does the better job of making this case? Does this make you think of Christianity any differently?
- For many people, "Goddess" is associated with pagans and sex while "God" is associated with mainstream religion and piousness. Are those associations justified? Do you feel any differently about that after reading either book? Which book was most persuasive on this issue?
- A character in each book argues that faith is better served if the faithful are given a consistent message, regardless of whether some parts are false or incomplete. Who are the characters? What is their motivation for keeping the secrets hidden? Do you think their motives are misguided or proper?
- The female protagonists in both books have a gift that allows them to find hidden secrets. What is the gift in each case. What does the gift allow them to do. Do you find this similar?
- The female protagonists in both books are estranged from a close family tie. What is the estrangement in both cases? Are they related to religion?
- The female protagonist in both books develops a talent from a male family figure after the estrangement. What is the talent? Who are the male family members. Is the talent vital for the success of her mission in the book?
- Who is Sophia? What does she represent? What is her role in both books?
- Each book opens with the curator of a priceless art collection. The plot turns on his murder. Who is the curator in each book? How are they alike?
- What mysterious clue does the murdered Curator leave in each book? Is the clue vital for the plot?
- A painting in each book conceals a gold key which is vital to moving the plot forward. What is the name of the painting in each book? Do you find the names similar?
- Mary Magdalene plays a role in each book. What is the role? Do you find the roles similar?
- Both books assert that even if religion is founded on falsified dogma, it is beneficial to the millions who believe in it. Do you agree with this? Which characters espouse this opinion?
- The protagonists in both books trust their lives through most of the book to an ally who turns out to be a traitor working for the villain. After having the prize within their grasp, they lose control to the traitor. Who is the traitor in each book? Do you find their motivations similar?
- What is the awesome family secret revealed in each book?