Lord of the Flies


William Golding

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Themes and Colors
Human Nature Theme Icon
Civilization Theme Icon
Savagery and the "Beast" Theme Icon
Spirituality and Religion Theme Icon
The Weak and the Strong Theme Icon
LitCharts assigns a color and icon to each theme in Lord of the Flies, which you can use to track the themes throughout the work.
Spirituality and Religion Theme Icon

Most of the boys on the island either hide behind civilization, denying the beast's existence, or succumb to the beast's power by embracing savagery. But in Lord of the Flies, Golding presents an alternative to civilized suppression and beastly savagery. This is a life of religion and spiritual truth-seeking, in which men look into their own hearts, accept that there is a beast within, and face it squarely.

Simon occupies this role in Lord of the Flies, and in doing so he symbolizes all the great spiritual and religious men, from Jesus to Buddha to nameless mystics and shamans, who have sought to help other men accept and face the terrible fact that the beast they fear is themselves. Of all the boys, only Simon fights through his own fear to discover that the "beast" at the mountaintop is just a dead man. But when Simon returns with the news that there's no real beast, only the beast within, the other boys kill him. Not just the savages, not just the civilized boys—all the boys kill Simon, because all of the boys lack the courage Simon displayed in facing the beast.

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Spirituality and Religion ThemeTracker

The ThemeTracker below shows where, and to what degree, the theme of Spirituality and Religion appears in each chapter of Lord of the Flies. Click or tap on any chapter to read its Summary & Analysis.
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Spirituality and Religion Quotes in Lord of the Flies

Below you will find the important quotes in Lord of the Flies related to the theme of Spirituality and Religion.
Chapter 5 Quotes
What I mean is... Maybe it's only us...
Related Characters: Simon (speaker)
Related Symbols: The Lord of the Flies (the Beast)
Page Number: 89
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 8 Quotes
The spear moved forward inch by inch and the terrified squealing became a high-pitched scream. Then Jack found the throat and the hot blood spouted over his hands. The sow collapsed under them and they were heavy and fulfilled upon her.
Related Characters: Jack
Page Number: 135
Explanation and Analysis:
There isn't anyone to help you. Only me. And I'm the Beast... Fancy thinking the Beast was something you could hunt and kill!... You knew, didn't you? I'm part of you? Close, close, close! I'm the reason why it's no go? Why things are the way they are?
Related Characters: Simon
Related Symbols: The Lord of the Flies (the Beast)
Page Number: 143
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 12 Quotes
What did it mean? A stick sharpened at both ends. What was there in that?
Related Characters: Ralph (speaker)
Page Number: 191
Explanation and Analysis: