Dust and Original Sin Essay Example
Dust and Original Sin Essay Example

Dust and Original Sin Essay Example

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Northern Lights examined in terms of domestic family relationships and the psychic interplay between parents and children, and its questions of belonging, parent-child relationships. Personality formation and Freudian understandings of sexuality.

It reflects how deeply damaged and dysfunctional Lira's family is and how she search for better and more loving adult role such as lore the bear and Serbian Peak. The ambivalence of paternal adults towards growing children is a primary theme of Northern Lights. - A person in her own right, but more as a creature serving their needs. Her family) The college has provided love and care determined in a rough and ready way by Lira's needs.

A setting in which can grow up to be herself. Pullmans depictions of adultchild roles and relationships negatively: Kristin Memorize: in Pullmans vision children must bow to adult authority and


where their role Is to obey and follow destiny rather than change It. Pullmans treatment of organized religion has been particularly controversial and he has accordingly been called "the most dangerous author in Britain". anti-Charlatans Peter Hunt argues, is "impossible for a children's book (especially one being read y a child) not to be educational or Influential In some way; It cannot help but reflect an ideology and, by extension, didactics". Dust as Metaphor in Philip Pullman by Anne-Marie Bird (Important) Why to retell the myth of the Fall? (The importance of the myth of the Fall) It provides answer to basic questions as:

  1. How the universe was made.
  2. How humanity began.
  3. Why suffering and death entered in the world.

Northern Lights: On a simplistic level: read as adventure stories in that they involve difficult Journeys in

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which the protagonist must confront numerous challenges in the search for some object, place, or person. On a deeper level is an exploration of the fundamental themes of the Fall:

  1. Initiation. The passage from innocence to experience.
  2. The nature of good and evil.
  3. The consequences of knowledge.
  4. The notion of free will or individual responsibility.

Dust: "Dust" is a conventional metaphor for human physicality inspired by God's judgment on humanity: "for dust thou art, and unto dust shall thou return".

In Pullmans narrative, however, Dust contains much more than the beginning and end of humanity's physical existence or the origins of the universe. Pullman, however, SE the word in order to connect the incompatible elements that make up the universe. Of the text. E. G. "uncountable billion of parallel worlds" (NIL, P. 374). Dust is described as "a new kind of elementary particle" (NIL, P. 368), yet it functions as a metaphor for "original sin" (NIL, P. 369) and is experienced by Lyre as "dark tensions, like the forms of thoughts not yet born" (NIL, P. 389) In short, Dust is the actual physical "stuff that holds the universe together.

Religion dualism: It is the doctrine that the world comprises two basic, diametrically opposed principles. (Lightdark - spiritmatter - goodevil) The fundamental belief being that the spirit is good and matter is evil raised by Christianity moral emphasis. Pullmans text strive these particular conceptual opposites.

The integration of the spiritual and the material is demonstrated most In the world of Northern Lights, every human has a "daemon" which is both visible and audible -a kind of "familiar" in animal form, usually of the opposite sec of its

human counterpart. The significance of the external soul is that it explicitly foregrounds the notion of dualism - the belief that the human being consists of two opposing and independent substance" - while maintaining that the body and soul are completely interrelated. O Thus, the text emphasizes that human and daemon are one being, linked by an invisible, telepathic bond. Ex: Lyre tells her daemon, Pan "I didn't have anything in mind and well you know it" (NIL, P. 9).

O The difference between adult's daemon and the child's is caused by Dust. Hill's Journey toward adulthood. O It is when Dust has finally "settled" on the individual that the daemon acquires a definitive form that most accurately reflects the essential nature of person. O The narrative links this phenomenon directly to the Fall of "man" with the idea that he "fixed" daemon is "physical proof that something happened when innocence changed into experience" (NIL, P. 370). O The transition from innocence to experience can be interpreted in two ways. The negative view is represented by the powerful and punitive Church.

As far as the Church is concerned, Dust must be "the physical evidence for original sin" (NIL, P. 369). When Adam & Eve became aware of their nakedness, in terms of traditional Christian interpretation, became connected with guilt, shame, and sin. To the Church, Dust symbolizes the awaking of sexual awareness, humanity's rejection f the heavenly for the earthly, and thus, a descent from spirit to matter. Pullman is concerned to demonstrate the interdependency of soul and body. The text presents a more literal realization of the descent from spirit to matter, through the "severed"

child. As far as Mrs.. , Coulter (an agent of the Church) and her organization, the "Oblation Board", are concerned, it is imperative to prolong the child's state of innocence, and in their view, the most effective method of preventing Dust from setting on the child is to separate the body from the daemon before the onset of puberty - a castration of sorts, referred to as P. 13), and cutting (NIL, P. 372). O The result is permanent to any imminent sexual awaking.

O However, preventing the child's development toward adulthood is merely one effect of intercession. Another is related to the complex question of the human personality: the notion that is the soul that makes us human, or "truly alive". O Thus, the psychic damage incurred following intercession could be described as the destruction of the human being's identity as a human, while the person remains alive only on some purely physical level. The idea that the separation of body and soul constitutes a "psychic death", a scent from "human being" to "non-being" is expanded by suggestion that the severed individual not only lacks of soul but is deprived of Dust: "the energy that links body and daemon"(NIL, P.73) Dust, therefore, does not only initiate the child's development toward adulthood, but remains as an underlying energy vital to human. The individuals who have undergone the intercession can never possess full subjectivity; thus they cannot become "dangerously independent" but instead are slaves to the oppressive Church. Pullmans narrative denounces the Church and its Oblation Board, or Gobblers, (NIL, P. 0) which denies the child the opportunity to develop toward sexual maturity.

The adult alienated from

their humanity, represent a further condemnation of totalitarian Church whose major concern is not worship but a concerted effort to eradicate those elements that might threaten its absolute power, namely, individuality, library, and human consciousness. In Philip Pullmans His Dark Materials trilogy of novels, Dust is a mysterious cosmic particle that is integral to the plot.

In Northern Lights, Lord Easier reveals the origins of the term "Dust" to be from a passage from the slightly alternate version of the Bible in Lira's world: "In the sweat of thy face shall thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it waste thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shall thou return. " (Genesis 3:19) Contents 1 Description 2 Dust as a symbol of Knowledge Description: Pullmans Dust is a fictional form of dark matter, an elementary particle that is of fundamental importance. It is invisible to the human eye and cannot be seen without the use of special instruments, such as the amber spyglass or a special film.

While humans cannot see Dust without the use of outside devices, creatures such as the leaf are able to see dust with their own eyes. Unlike ordinary particles, Dust is conscious. It falls from the sky, is attracted to people, and wears off onto objects made by people.

This makes it of great interest to the Church, which believes that it may be the physical manifestation of Original Sin. It is later learned that Dust actually confers consciousness, knowledge, and wisdom, and that Dust is formed when matter becomes conscious. This allows creatures who have the ability to see Dust to identify other

sentient and intelligent creatures.

An example of this is when the mulled are able to distinguish Mary Malone as an intelligent being (compared to the other animals), because of the Dust surrounding her.

Dust is life and the living essence of everything from the play 'His Dark Materials' and 'The Golden Compass. ' Dust is also the thing that connects humans to their dГmoons. This being is the physical manifestation of the soul that can talk and is in the form of an animal. It sends the lack apparent dГmoons, they still exist, though they typically do not take the form of animals.

In some worlds, one's dГmoon is the silent consciousness in the back of one's head, that other voice that confers intuition. If the bond between a child and their dГmoon is severed (as through Intercession), both the child and the dГmoon will eventually die. If the separation occurs after Dust has settled on the person (that is, after he or she has reached adolescence), the person simply becomes a lifeless shell. It is Dust that provides the answers given by the altimeter, the I Chining system of divination and also the computer that Dry.

Mary Malone creates in order to communicate directly with these particles by using one's consciousness. Dust has arioso names among the various worlds within the trilogy. Dust was previously known (in Lyre Balaclava's universe) as Rousakis particles after their discoverer, Boris Monochromatic Rousakis. It is known also as Shadows in our world (Pullman relates Dust to dark matter), and the mullet's word Sara accompanied by a leftward flick of the trunk (or arm for humans).

Angels are formed when Dust

condenses. Nevertheless, Angels are not in reality the human-like figures they appear to be.

They are the physical manifestation of spirit making something 'be'. Because consciousness is the wing that makes us "sin", it can (in theory) be seen as original sin. This is the point of view seen by the Magisterial, and therefore they seek to destroy Dust.

However, they fail to see what the full repercussions of this would be, as they are ignorant to the true nature of Dust. Eliminating it would mark the end of consciousness. Dust as a symbol of Knowledge: His Dark Materials is widely recognized as an anti-Christian work. .Some of its anti- religious material is overt, but most is covert, hidden in symbolism.

Most of the symbolism takes the form of three intertwined allegories. Like all allegories, these use surface story characters and events to symbolism characters and events in other narratives. In Pullmans case, the other narratives are 1. C. S.

Lexis's The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, 2. John Million's Paradise Lost, 3. An original Pullman tale about conflict between Charles Darwin and Christian missionaries. Dust relates to the second and third narratives. [l] Pullmans allegories are tied together by surface story symbolism depicting warfare between knowledge and religious superstition.

These two entities are respectively symbolizes by 1 . Olden dust that drifts down from the sky onto adults 2. Ghostly "specters" that devour the minds of adults while leaving the body unharmed. In the surface story's climax, Lyre (the heroine, symbolizing Satin's Paradise Lost daughter, Sin) and Will (symbolizing Cain, son of Adam and Eve in Paradise Lost) eat some "little red fruits" packed in

a lunch for them by Mary (symbolizing the serpent-tempter in the Paradise Lost allegory and Charles Darwin, bringer of knowledge, in the Darwin allegory).

The fruits symbolize the Forbidden Fruit from the Tree of Knowledge, fruit that God forbade Adam and Eve to eat.

In the original Genesis story and the parallel Paradise Lost story, two things happen. First, Adam and Eve acquire knowledge, which is forbidden by God. Second, they are ejected from the Garden of Eden, where ignorance must prevail. Their ejection is known in Christian theology as The Fall. The reason for their ejection is that they are events in His Dark Materials symbolism the two events in the Genesis/Paradise Lost story.

First, Lyre lives up to the name of the Paradise Lost character she symbolizes (Sin) by reenacting the Bible's act of Original Sin: she eats the symbolizes Forbidden Fruit, thereby obtaining knowledge. Will eats too. Their eating the "little red fruits" causes golden dust -? knowledge -? to suddenly begin drifting down on them. They have symbolically eaten from the Tree of Knowledge; they are drenched in knowledge.

Second, they Fall in love. The new Fall (Falling in love) symbolizes the original Fall of Christian doctrine -? ejection from Eden, where ignorance must prevail. 3] When this climactic event occurs -? when knowledge begins pouring into the world (as it did when Darwin published his theory of evolution) -? the Church falls into disarray and decline. 4] The concept of Dust is fundamental to the story that unfolds in the His Dark Materials trilogy as it is the quest for comprehension of the substance by the protagonists and the battle for power

for free thought that forms the main narrative theme.

Dust is the central concept of Philip Pullmans His Dark Materials, the purpose of all its action and the great philosophical explanation behind all the mysteries.

Most of the main characters are to some extent engaged in the quest to understand Dust, either to destroy it or to preserve it. Throughout the trilogy, however, Dust acquires a laddering array of meanings, facets, forms, and functions. It operates at numerous different levels, both literal and metaphorical, within the story and as a philosophical metaphor for real life, and it is an extremely difficult concept to really come to grips with, even after repeat readings of the book and much thought.

In "Circumventing the Grand Narrative: Dust as an Alternative Theological Vision in Pullmans His Dark Materials", Anne-Marie Bird attempts to apply Dermis's theories of deconstruction to the idea of Dust, to examine and reconcile the ways it functions to subvert absolutes ND binaries while also seeming to put forth a "grand narrative" of its own. She places the "alternative theology' of Dust within the context of modernity and post- modernity, totaling and totalitarian narratives, and the place of spirituality in contemporary life.

I wish to analyze the different roles Dust plays in His Dark Materials and to try to understand the extent to which all these meanings can cohere into one overarching meaning, and the extent to which there very dissonance is part of the symbolic nature of Dust in the larger, philosophical sense. Dust, with its sat array of meanings, is a grand interactive, the first cause and reason for everything. But its nature is such that

it undermines any restrictive, totalitarian aspects of such an overarching narrative.

Dust is a tangible metaphor for what it means to be human, in all its dizzying complexity.

Children's literature has become one of the major branches of literature. The first literature written specifically for children was intended to instruct them. Critics who study children's literature have found that what is viewed as appropriate reading for children adheres closely to a letup's notion of what a child is a notion that may change considerably from time to time.

In the 18th and early 19th Centuries John Newbury - an English author and bookseller- , was the first publisher to dedicate himself to publishing for children.

Newbury began to produce a series of chapbooks especially for children, starting 'Instruction with Delight'. He was influenced by Rousseau emphasis on proper moral development; written mostly by women. Newbury success and his book was the first children's book in which amusement rather than teaching. Another critic how cuisses the beginning of children literature is Matthew Greene in his essay, 'Children's Literature: Birth, Infancy, and Maturity. He analyzed the rise of children's literature in the eighteenth century.

Peter Hunt in his article 'Instruction and Delight' is trying to answer this question (Should children's books be for instruction or delight? ). Children's literature is at root about issues of power and politics which adults impose consciously or not their own ideologies on children. Adults are exercising power because they write and children read. I will discuss Peter Hunts article 'Instruction and Delight' with reference to Philip Pullmans novel Northern Lights. Children now days are introduced to ideas which used to be kept from


As if the society wants to stop children from being children any more.

The ideology in children literature make children grow up quickly and unfortunately children innocent are being robbed from them. Obedience, Disobedience, and Storytelling in C. S. Lewis and Philip Pullman by Naomi Wood: Reader 2 p. 266-75 IMPORTANT Literature for children, partly because of its traditionally didactic role, often focuses on obedience as a central issue.

Obedience is a fraught term; it may be understood as a natural and instinctive response to a superior or as coercive violation of individual choice through persuasion and/or physical force.

The most important instance of disobedience in Jude- Christian scripture is Eve's decision to eat the fruit of the tree of knowledge in order to be like God; her disobedience initiates humanity's Fall. Themes and symbols surrounding Eve's disobedience and its metaphoric reflection of humanity's moral status have been appropriated by two important children's fantasy series with doubled and paradoxical effects. Pullman uses his fiction to comment on and criticize our world; and both write of naive protagonists who find themselves responsible for the destiny of a world.

Both Lewis and Pullman are intimate with the literature of the Fall: Pullman, in the republican tradition of Blake and of Million's political writing, depicts corrupt ecclesiastical and political authorities to whom allegiance would be evil. Generally speaking, Lewis is Sustaining on obedience and the Fall, while Pullman is closer to Gnostic theology. 3 In his monograph on Paradise Lost, Lewis asserts that obedience to authority is decorous and appropriate, even dutiful; we consent to submit, recognizing authority right to control knowledge and power.

Eve's sin was her desire

to become godlike in knowledge and thus to rival God. On the other side, Pullman appears to agree with those Gnostic who, "instead of blaming the human desire for knowledge as the root of all sin, [...] did the opposite and sought redemption through noosing. And whereas the orthodox often blamed Eve for the fall and pointed to women's submission as appropriate punishment, Gnostic often depicted Eve-?or the feminine spiritual power she represented-?as the source of spiritual awakening" (Pages, p. 8).

Pullman advocates repeatedly the disobedient pursuit of knowledge as the key to maturity, and his humanity through knowledge and the creation of new true stories.

Pullman creates a Christianity without Christ, exhibiting deep skepticism about divine power as it is deployed through institutional religion. Lewis' God is a benevolent liberator, while Pullmans is a tyrannical usurper. This difference is crucial to understanding the role and significance of obedience in each series, in the ways each author pictures and characterizes his version of God, and in the way each narrates his tale.

As "creator- god" of their respective tales, Lewis and Pullman employ narrators that capture structurally the qualities of their ultimate authority figures-?narrators that mirror and implicitly comment on their respective visions of authority. In the first book of the series, The Golden Compass, we only know the Authority through the Church.

In Pullmans world, the Church is monolithic, powerful, and combines the most authoritarian, formidable, and evil aspects of Protestant Calvinist and Roman Catholicism. 7 Pullmans fictive Church, described in orthodox manner as the Body of

God, is similar enough to the Christian Church to make some of Pullmans characterizations pointed: his Church, like many

in our world, silences heretics through Inquisition, castrates young boys to retain their lovely voices at the cost of their sexuality ("so useful in Church music" [GO, p. 374]), and generally opposes desire for the things of the material world while amassing great wealth and power. Pullmans Church sponsors all scientific research (called "experimental theology') and uses resulting technology in its rituals. It approves or disapproves of individual discoveries referencing Church doctrine.

Of chief concern in the series are elementary particles called Dust, identified as Original Sin by Church scholars. In an effort to fight Dust (which collects around human beings beginning with puberty), the Church commissions the "General Oblation Board" to study Dust and solve the problem of its attraction to adolescents and adults. Led by the evil Mrs.. Coulter, the General Oblation Board kidnaps children to sever them from their "dГmoons"-? animal-shaped souls-?in an experimental process euphemistically called "intercession.

" Those who undergo this process either die or become zombies without any wills of their own.

If we may know the Authority through his representatives, we have to agree with the shaman Australians Grammar's description of the struggle against the Authority: "every little increase in human freedom has been fought over ferociously between those who want us to know more and be wiser and stronger, and those who want us to obey and be humble and submit" (SKY, p. 320). Pullman sees God as a despoiler of the material universe; the cosmos itself acts independently from the Authority, since other gods and powers exist and since the Authority himself was formed out of Dust, as were other conscious beings.

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