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Jude the ObscureIn Hardys Jude the Obscure Hardy shows his views on religion and commitment to the Church which were said to have declined in the latter years of his life Ingham xxvii Throughout the book Hardy displays his feeling that religion is something that people use in order to satisfy themselves by giving their lives meaning One instance in which Hardy clearly displays this is when he writes It had been the yearning of his heart to find something to anchor on to cling to Ingham 94 In order to bring out this point Hardy chooses to create Jude as an orphan and has him come from obscure origins By doing this he creates a character who is looking for something to give him an identity As a result of his relationship with Mr Phillotson who leaves for Christminster in order to become ordained he finds religion and feels that he can use it to help him gain an identity Hardy feels that people should shy away from their old ways of thinking and begin to form new opinions of their own He feels that people should not just blindly follow religion without deciding for themselves that this is what they want People should not be as Jude who becomes obsessed with religion simply because his mentor Phillotson felt this way One of the major reasons that causes Hardy to have these views is that he feels religion leads to hypocrisy He feels that man has many desires that go against the laws of religion and these desires lead man to feel very hypocritical These feelings of hypocrisy then cause man to have many inner conflicts that lead to many problems This negativity towards religion is seen both through symbols in the book and in the plot itself The symbols that convey this message are the name Jude which is an allusion to Judas Iscariot who was a traitor to Jesus The name Jude
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