• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Religious motifs

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Religious motifs While reading 'Clearances' one may find a great number of religious references almost in every sonnet. Those references constitute another theme which binds the poems into one coherent cycle. The cobble that is thrown at the poet's great - grandmother is definitely one of the religious symbols of suffering, pain, rejection and punishment. Heaney's great - grandmother was stoned by the local people because she married a Catholic man and, therefore, 'betrayed' their religion. As it is stated in 'Slownik symboli', a stone symbolizes administering justice but it also is a tool to inflict punishment and martyrdom. 'God establishes the stoning as a punishment for idolatry'1 'Thou shalt not sacrifice unto the Lord thy God any bullock, or sheep, wherein is blemish or any evilfavouredness: for that is an abomination unto the Lord thy God. If there be found among you, within any of thy gates which the Lord thy God giveth thee, man or woman, that hath wrought wickedness in the sight of the Lord transgressing his covenant, and hath gone and served other gods and worshipped them, either the sun or moon, or any of the host of heaven, which I have not commanded (...) then shalt thou bring forth that man or woman, which have commited that wicked thing, unto thy gates, even that man or that woman, and shalt stone them with stones, till they die.'2 Heaney's great - grandmother married a Catholic man and therefore she was condemned by the local people. ...read more.

Middle

'It is Number 5, New Row, Land of the Dead/ where grandfather is raising from his place (...) and they sit down in the shining room together'. The memories recall the reality and the reality recalls the memoirs. Heaney ponders over the past and reminiscences about the activities that he used to perform with his mother. Now she is gone and the poet has only the recollections left. 'I remembered her head bent towards my head/ (...) Never closer the whole rest of our lives'. The motif of suffusion of the two worlds - the Earthly Life and the Land of the Dead - symbolizes Christ descending to the abyss after His death and before the Resurrection. It is the Christ himself who joins these two worlds in the great mystery of death and the Resurrection. 'Verily, verily I say unto you, that ye shall weep and lament, but the world shall rejoice: and ye shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy (...)And ye now therefore have sorrow: but I will see you again , and your hearts shall rejoice and your joy no man taketh from you. And in that day ye shall ask me nothing. Verily, verily, I say unto you, whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, he will give it to you. Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full (...) ...read more.

Conclusion

They felt as if they came to a standstill. The panic, stagnation and spiritual paralysis recede along with the Resurrected Lord. 'Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you. And when he had so said, he shewed unto them his hands and his side. Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the Lord.'13 The eighth sonnet is a kind of continuation of the previous one. The motifs of the Holy Tree, which collapsed into mud and the soul 'ramifying and forever silent', correspond to taking the Christ down from the Cross, placing Him in the sepulcher and rolling the stone. Probably everything is surrounded by the silence which may bring many things - good or bad as well. In this silence there are joined pain and solace, despair and hope, longing and faith altogether. 1 'Slownik symboli' Wladyslaw Kopalinski; Wiedza Powszechna 1990; p. 141 2 The 'Holy Bible' King James Version; the World Publishing Company; Cleveland and New York; Deuter 17; 1-3, 5 3 Ibid., St. John 8; 3-8 4 Ibid., St. John 8, 52-59 5 ibid., Gen 18; 3-8 6 ibid., St. Luke 22, 15-18 7 ibid., St. John 16; 20, 22-24, 33 8 ibid., Romans 4, 22-25 9 ibid., Romans 8, 31-34 10 ibid., St. John 19, 38-40 11 ibid., Revelation 3; 4-5 12 ibid., I Corinthians 12, 24-26 13 ibid., St. John 20, 19-20 ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Christmas section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Christmas essays

  1. Traditions and holidays of Great Britain

    Real Christmas puddings always have a piece of holly on the top. Holly bushes and trees have red berries at Christmas time, and so people use holly to decorate their houses for Christmas. The holly on the pudding is part of the decoration. Crackers are also usual at Christmas dinner.

  2. Examine how different writers present the theme of Christmas

    he's the most powerful being in the universe so he has to have a big chair and a big heaven. Both of these images are very stereotypical and it doesn't challenge our view of God or heaven it backs it up.

  1. Capital punishment

    was so that Jesus didn't get away and so that they arrested the right man. Judas went straight to Judas and said "peace be with you teacher" and kissed him. Jesus answered "be quick about it, friend!" When the people tried to arrest Jesus one of the disciples cut off

  2. Festivals Coursework:Lent, Holy Week and Easter

    Many people spread their cloaks on the road, while others spread branches they had cut in the fields. Those who went ahead and those who followed shouted, "Hosanna!" "Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!" "Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!"

  1. I am going to write about three different poems, which have a different view ...

    The title tells the reader that it is a ballad. Therefore we know it is a story that is supposed to be sung. Before reading the poem, I can guess that the stanzas are short as it is a ballad.

  2. Jesus Christ was one of the world's greatest religious leaders.

    No one knows what time of year Jesus was born. The day of His birth was first celebrated on December 25 in the early 300's. The gospels of Matthew and Luke record that Jesus was born in Bethlehem, a town in Judea.

  1. The sacrament of the Eucharist cannot be understood without the knowledge of the Jewish ...

    Jesus then arrived with the disciples. As they got settled, Jesus said an unsettling prophecy. "I tell you, one of you will betray me- one who is eating with me tonight." Many of them were in disbelief and upset. After he had told them this sad prophecy, Jesus then "broke

  2. The Matrix As an Allegory of Christ

    Though Jesus had many opponents, none denied that this miracle had occurred. The crowds saw this miracle and their thoughts turned again to messianic hopes. The Jews perceived that the miracle man could be the savior for their country. Jesus could surely free them from Roman rule and help them to conquer their enemies.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work