Throughout the novel, Jane Eyre, composed by Charlotte Bronte, Jane has a hard time to discover the best balance between moral task and earthly pleasure; in between commitment to her spirit and attention to her physical and emotional requirements. She lives most of her childhood as a defiant and bold youth, but the impact of those whom she is surrounded by helps her grow and turn into a disciplined female of the Christian faith. Bronte represents Christianity with 3 significant characters: Helen Burns, Mr.
Brocklehurst, and St. John. The saint-like Helen Burns practices generous faith and is able to like those who persecute her. Mr. Brocklehurst is a hypocritical Christian and utilizes religious beliefs as reason for his cruelty. St. John has a strong religious conviction and a similarly effective inner voice and objective in getting the word out of Christianity. The Christian values Helen Burns, Mr. Brocklehurst, and St. John Rivers demonstrate are incredibly influential in Jane’s Christian life and how she pertains to specify her own faith and values.
Throughout her remain at Lowood School, Jane establishes a close relationship with Helen Burns. Jane thinks about both Helen and herself as alienated from the other trainees. Though a short character in the novel, Helen’s design of Christianity assists Jane discover how to live her life like a true Christian. Helen endures harsh treatment and forgives individuals who abuse her with simple self-restraint and grace. Her view is mainly that you should, “Love your opponents; bless them that curse you; do great to them that hate you and despitefully use you.” (p. 0) Nevertheless, this outlook is not easily accepted by Jane who can not comprehend Helen’s belief of tolerance of injustice.
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Young Jane thinks, “When we are struck at without reason, we should strike back really tough … so regarding teach the individual who struck us to never ever do it again. “(p. 60) Even as Helen is lying on her death bed speaking with Jane about God, she reveals a mindset of unquestioning faith. “Why, then, should we even sink overwhelmed with distress, when life is so quickly over, and death is so certain an entryway to joy– to splendor?” (p. 2) Helen eagerly awaits her approaching death so that she might soon be with God. Jane is so captivated with her good friend’s strong rely on God that she eventually develops into a lady of the exact same devout faith. Mr. Brocklehurst unquestionably defines the false Christian who disguises their hypocrisy and cruelty behind the pretense or teachings of self-righteous Christianity. Mr. Brocklehurst controls Christian teaching to serve his own requirements and program and Jane sees the deceit of his habits as it contrasts so grossly with the true Christian virtues that Helen possesses.
His habits oppresses others while Helen’s uplifts and serves those she comes across. At Lowood, Jane and the other girls are fearful of Mr. Brocklehurst who utilizes faith as a rationalization for their bad living conditions. He even presumes as to chastise Miss Temple for providing the women with an additional meal when their breakfast had actually been unsuited to eat. He sternly rebukes her by saying, “A sensible instructor would take the opportunity of referring to the sufferings of the primitive Christians; to the tortures of the martyrs …”(p. 5) and considers the persecution of the early Christians as the justification for preventable bad treatment of his students. Also in the very same chapter, Mr. Brocklehurst’s hypocritical nature appears when he firmly insists that the ladies’ hair be cut due to the fact that curls are un-Christian and not modest enough, while his partner and two children have their hair styled in curls and dressed in velvets, silks, and furs. Jane rejects this double basic because of its apparent harsh hypocrisy and recognizes the importance of real Christian morality and integrity in her own practice of faith.
The good-looking blonde-haired, blue-eyed parson, St. John, is explained in both physical and spiritual attractive terms by Jane. Yet, Jane identifies the conflict shown by St. John’s ambition in pursuing an admired, self-sacrificing mission in the church versus her need for psychological bonding and passion to meet her need for individual liberty, love and emotional assistance. St. John is not hypocritical like Mr. Brocklehurst in his practice of faith, however rather referred to as “patient and placid” with little expression of personal relationship with God in Christianity.
St. John desires Jane to imitate his Christianity as a responsibility instead of a relationship and vocation. He wants her to marry him and admonishes her to forgo her own self-reliance and possible vocation as a housewife in submission to the “will of God” and serve with him in India as a missionary. In trying to convince her of her “moral duty” and that declining him would be declining the will of God, Jane realizes her own Christian identity. St. John: “One fitted to my function, you mean– fitted to my occupation.
Again I inform you it is not the unimportant private individual– the mere male, with the male’s selfish senses– I want to mate: it is a missionary. “(p. 408) Jane: “Oh! I will offer my heart to God,” I said. “You do not desire it.” (p. 409) In the end, she turns away from St. John and towards a relationship in which she finds that real individual liberty is not found in loneliness and task, however in relationships developed on emotional dependency and occupation. Jane was as soon as a persistent and energetic child who would resist and defend herself without regard for Christian humility or worths.
Nevertheless, with the chance to witness the modeling of faith of substantial characters in the book Jane Eyre, Jane develops and welcomes her own Christian beliefs. Helen Burns, exhibits a devout, flexible, and self-sacrificing faith through her gentle and calm nature and faith expression, however does not have the perseverance that is inherent to Jane’s nature. Brocklehurst’s hypocritical treatment of the women at Lowood is an injustice that Jane is too simply to ever duplicate. St. John shows responsibility versus occupation and his lack of enthusiasm contrasts with the extreme need for relationship both in her relationship with God and her expression of that through her vocation as a housewife. It is through these characters that Jane encounters in the book that she has the ability to discover and deepen the understanding of her own faith. In the end, it is the times of severe distress when she turns to prayer that she discovers answers in the quiet conversations in between her and God. It is through all these encounters that Jane turns into a positive lady of Christian faith.