The rubric of the novel comes from the Rheims-Douay interlingual rendition of the Bible, specifically Mathew 11:12. Flannery O Connor uses symbolism to pass on the impression that human desire for spiritualty is answered through religion in Jesus Christ merely. The force inherently stated in the poetry is symbolic of the battle that Christians go through in order to achieve ageless life ( Conoboy, 2008 ) . One has to be violent against his or herself in order to achieve heavenly land. The novel is ab initio focussed chiefly around Mason since the secret plan of the full narrative is set based on his character. Mason sacredly raised Francis and declared that he would baptise Bishop. He asserts that if he would non make it, so the much younger Tarwater would make it. When Francis finds Mason dead in the dream at the initial phases of the novel, it is symbolic of the proverbial torch being passed onto Tarwater into going a prophesier. Water in this regard represents the giving of new life, albeit violently. Tarwater drowns Bishop in the name of baptising him. He says that he by chance baptized him. This is because to him, here is nil like being born once more. Symbolically, when he fell asleep after being offered a drive and they pulled over, he dreamt of the decease of Bishop, the male child he had drowned. Symbolically, the words of baptism he had earlier uttered were forced from his oral cavity merely like Jonah being expelled from the giant ‘s tummy.
The beginning of the fresh refers to Tarwater ‘s upbringing in a spiritual manner. The farm in which he was frugally brought up is symbolic of the simpleness of faith. The farm he lives in religiously represents his ‘better half ‘ . The bantam angel on his shoulders with consciousness which implants on his head that he would make good by baptising the Bishop is besides symbolic that he was partly clean. In the Rayber ‘s subdivision, Tarwater leaves his prudent life and goes to populate with Rayber. He lives in the metropolis which is in crisp contrast to the farm Tarwater lived in in footings of religionism. By populating in such a metropolis is symbolic of corruptness of moral unity in both Tarwater and Rayber. If Mason was the symbolic torch on Tarwater ‘s shoulder which literally drives the first subdivision, Rayber and his morally corrupt metropolis are symbolic of the Satan on the opposite shoulder and the primary struggle.
The novel indicates that one time Rayber attempted to submerge his darling boy, symbolic of God ‘s love for humanity by giving his ain boy. Rayber tells Tarwater that his inability to submerge his boy was a ‘failure of the nervousnesss ‘ . However, his love for his boy remains ideal and absolute. This is symbolic of love of world to mankind. The love he feels can merely be controlled every bit long as the Bishop remains with him. However, if he of all time looses him, the love can non be controlled and his full universe would be his idiot kid. Symbolically, humanity is tongueless, simple and incapacitated carriers of love and at the same clip every bit incapacitated. They form weak parents and involve themselves in dance of decease signifiers. They can deny God even to the point of their extinction. This is symbolic of the humanity ability for ego devastation. On the other manus, Tarwater represents the ability of humanity to transport on and continue life. He is a male child who is destined to be a prophesier. He is symbolic of the seed that bears the following coevals. Symbolically, it is in him that the reader must look for the concluding message in the novel. This is because the novel is about redemption and salvation. However, Tarwater thinks the contrary. He is convinced that the seed resides with his uncle. At a point, he tells him that there was n’t a thing that he would make about the full occurrences rhetorically. He tells him that the seed fell on bad evidences but fortuitously fell in deep. This he means to symbolically state his uncle that he will finally hold no free will since other outside forces will coerce him onto their want.
Symbolically, fire has been used in the novel. When Tarwater is offered conveyance by a alien on his manner after submerging Bishop, he is rapped by the alien after being offered drugged liquor in the forests. The alien so steals Tarwater ‘s chapeau and a bottle screw he had been given by Rayber ( O’Connor, 2007 ) . Once he wakes up and takes notice of what had happened, he sets on fire everything in the surrounding of the evil topographic point. In this regard, fire is symbolically used to stand for cleaning. He so heads place with his eyes looking like those of a prophesier. When he approaches his place, he hears the interior voice that antecedently had been stating him to decline his naming. To divide himself from the voice, he sets a fire and caputs to the glade. Once he gets to the glade, he finds Buford Munson who had all along been look intoing the activities in the farm while he was off. The sight of the cross on his uncle ‘s sedate brings to him the vision of Christ, the fishes and the loaves. It is at this point that he realizes the beginning of the hungriness he had been experiencing. He so sets a fire. To him, this fire is more like the fire on the firing shrub from where Moses was called by God. He so hears a voice inquiring him to state God ‘s kids about the awful velocity of clemency. Symbolically, the fire is an indicant of godly intercession as he finally turns his face towards the metropolis go forthing behind Powderhead and subjects himself to the life of a prophesier of God.
Inter-changingly, fire and H2O has been used in the novel to stand for cleaning and Godhead intercession in the full novel. Although they have both been used in different state of affairss for devastation, they have besides been used as a signifier of salvation of humanity. They are used as span between humanity and the godly planet. They are supposed to be a signifier of cleansing for the wickednesss that are committed by humanity. It is apparent that any and all characters and symbols in the novel pulls and pushes Tarwater from and to his fate. Symbolically, Tarwater represents all worlds who are pushed by state of affairss and fortunes towards the border and have to seek Godhead intercession for their redemption. The characters in the novel are symbolic of the challenges and quandary that adult male has to postulate with. The fresh delivers two symbolic options for its audience. They either have to take between the manner of Tarwater and the manner of Rayber. Tarwater ‘s manner has fewer picks than the force exerted upon its chosen. The Raybers manner is that of ultimate anguish since it succumbs merely nil masqueraded as free will.