In The Giver by Lois Lowry, there are several incidents that could be viewed as Jonas’ epiphanies. First, there is the incident that occurs with the apple. Jonas does not understand it at first. He tossed the apple to his friend Asher, and while the apple is in midair, it appears different for just a moment. When Jonas explains this to the Giver, the Giver explains to Jonas that the apple appeared to him in color. By contrast, the people in Jonas’ society do not see things in color because with “sameness,” everything is in black and white plus some shades of gray in between. Realizing that the world is actually full of color and is not just black and white is an epiphany of sorts for Jonas.
Another incident occurs when the Giver gives Jonas the memory of riding on a sled on a cold wintery day in the snow. Jonas feels the cold. He feels the exhilaration of speeding downhill. He feels the snow hit his face. This experience is also an epiphany for him to realize that when the world is not characterized by “sameness,” there are hills and that the kind of feeling the ride on the sled gives him can be exciting.
Another unhappy epiphany occurs when Jonas realizes what being released really means. He learns that it actually means being put to death. Jonas is shocked and finds it difficult to accept. He asks the Giver if his father knows about the true meaning of release and is very disappointed to learn that he does. He also realizes that his father probably puts babies to death himself. He and the Giver watch a taping of a release that his father performed and Jonas is horrified. That epiphany leads to his decision to leave and to take baby Gabriel with him.