What represents 'religious allegory' in "Lord of the Flies"?

Expert Answers
ms-mcgregor eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The major religious allegory surrounds Simon and his search for the truth. Once Simon has "talked" to the "Lord of the Flies" he climbs the mountain in search of "the beast." What he discovers is that the beast is only a dead parachutist. When he runs down the mountain to tell the truth to the boys, they are in the middle of a ritualistic dance. They mistake Simon for the beast and kill him. This mirrors two Biblical stories. Moses went up to the mountain where God delivered the truth in the form of the 10 commandments. When Moses descended the mountain, he found his people had made an idol of gold shaped as a calf and were dancing and partying around the calf. Moses was furious and broke the stones which contained the 10 commandments. Unlike Simon, Moses was not killed. However, according to the New Testament, when Jesus came down from Heaven in order to deliver the truth to mankind, he was mistaken for a false prophet and executed. This mirrors Simon's ultimate fate. Thus, Simon is known in literature as a "Christ-figure", a character who sacrifices his own life and that life generally affects the protagonist in some great way. This kind of religious allegory abounds in Western Literature, from 'The Grapes of Wrath" to "Red Badge of Courage" to "Lord of the Flies."

Read the study guide:
Lord of the Flies

Access hundreds of thousands of answers with a free trial.

Start Free Trial
Ask a Question