Religion In Owen Meany

1100 Words5 Pages
In and of itself, personal faith consists of beliefs, confidence, and trust that comes from within, rather than societal norms. Personal faith roots from beliefs within oneself and God. Belief in God requires knowledge in an individual’s personal faith. John Wheelwright states, “I am doomed to remember a boy with a wrecked voice - not because of his voice, or because he was the smallest person I ever knew, or even because he was the instrument of my mother’s death, but because he is the reason I believe in God; I am a Christian because of Owen Meany” (Irving 1). This quotation indicates John’s beliefs towards religion. Owen Meany expresses his beliefs on religion and God which changes John’s views. Throughout the span of John’s life, there…show more content…
Religion is not about rituals or rules of an organization. Religion is about believing in something greater than yourself, and the special purpose your life has in the universe. Throughout the novel, Owen reflects this belief as he states, “belief is not an intellectual matter” (Irving 112). John criticizes religion as he questions the difference between religion and faith. John believes that the principles of religion are studied, and faith is solely based on beliefs. John views organized religion more corrupt than beneficial. Beliefs towards religion and faith can be confused in regards to what is real or not. J. Denny Weaver states, “As the narrator then unfolds Owen’s story, what brings the narrator to faith is the series of coincidences that occur in Owen’s life, which Owen and eventually Johnny believe are the action of God, along with Owen’s premonitions of his future that eventually prove true” (Weaver 14). John portrays his confusion towards religion and faith, instead of connecting with either option. John goes to church but admits to an amount of doubt. In comparison Owen is very religious and has no doubt of God’s existence. However, Owen dislikes organized religion, as a…show more content…
The novel reflects this theme as Irving states, “Watch out for people who call themselves religious; make sure you know what they mean - make sure they know what they mean” (Irving 504). This quotation highlights different trivial religions. There are always differences between beliefs and individuals, even if they belong to the exact same branch of Christianity. When John thinks about Owen’s time on earth, he begins to wonder that God would not have let his own child die so young. This leads to other questions such as why Owen knew everything that he knew, and why he had such faith in a God that eventually let him die so young. Though this may sound like John is questioning religion as a whole, Owen still affects him and causes him to move closer to God and change his feelings towards religion. The concept of trust is difficult to grasp. J. Denny Weaver states, “Somehow, it is claimed, apart from and without our understanding of it, God uses or needs or works through and directs the evil in the world as well as the good. And faith then means to accept and to believe that it is good in the evil that happens” (Weaver 12). Owen believes that he has a purpose in the universe which is to save children. Owen believes that God gives everyone their own purpose in life. Throughout the novel, John’s faith is one of the main focuses and Owen’s impact on John’s religious convictions is evident from the
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