How is Friar Lawrence depicted as religious in Romeo and Juliet?

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Friar Lawrence is an example of religious representation in the story by his very profession. As a friar, he is a man of the cloth, a member of a religious order. Friars, unlike monks, do not cloister themselves away in their monastic houses; rather, they are committed to serving the interests of the wider community. Friar Lawrence does live in a cell, in which he is seen several times in the play, but he is not bound to it. Instead, he spends his time interacting with others from outside his order, and he is clearly someone Romeo and Juliet can depend on and trust (albeit he does not necessarily lead them in the right direction).

It is true that Friar Lawrence is not necessarily a very pious figure—he is not defined by his express adherence to religious ideals. He does, however, make various references to God and to his role as a protector of souls from sin, which suggests that he takes his vocation seriously. For example, he asks that God "pardon sin" in the context of Romeo paying too much attention to Rosalind.

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You're right to say he's rebellious. But, I don't think he's religious.

In Romeo and Juliet, and all of his plays, Shakespeare avoids religious dogma. Instead, his characters are secular and humanistic, even the men of the cloth. It's as if Shakespeare foresaw the bloody struggle that religion would cause in England for the next century (Protestants versus Catholics; the Thirty Years War; Bloody Mary).

Friar Lawrence is more interested in healing naturally than spiritually. He's more into herbs and potions than chapters and verses. Sure, he uses some religious imagery, but it pales in comparison to all the flower imagery.

Friar Lawrence is more of a father figure to Romeo than a holy father. And since much of what goes wrong in the play comes from his bad decision-making, he's arguably not a very good father figure, either.

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