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What are Holden's attitudes toward religion in The Catcher in the Rye?

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suemo | Student, Grade 10 | eNotes Newbie

Posted October 4, 2007 at 10:40 PM via web

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What are Holden's attitudes toward religion in The Catcher in the Rye?

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allyson | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Assistant Educator

Posted October 4, 2007 at 10:53 PM (Answer #1)

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Holden talks about his views toward religion in Chapter 14. He says that he feels like praying, but cannot because he can never pray when he feels like it. He also claims that he is "sort of an atheist," but as he continues, it does not seem that he really is an atheist. He has knowledge of the Bible, believes in Jesus, and even admires him, despite what Holden views as flawed disciples. Holden even seems to identify with Jesus, as someone who would "puke" if he saw the phoniness of people, like those wearing costumes and singing at Radio City.

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bear70 | College Teacher | eNotes Newbie

Posted October 5, 2007 at 4:50 PM (Answer #2)

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Perhaps he felt guilty of having religion. Probably if  he were to have a religion, he has to follow it and if he doesn't, he felt that he would be condemned and regard as a sinner. So might as well he be an atheist.

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