Theurigism in the works of William Golding

Only available on StudyMode
  • Download(s) : 39
  • Published : June 14, 2014
Open Document

Text Preview
American International Journal of
Research in Humanities, Arts
and Social Sciences

Available online at

ISSN (Print): 2328-3734, ISSN (Online): 2328-3696, ISSN (CD-ROM): 2328-3688 AIJRHASS is a refereed, indexed, peer-reviewed, multidisciplinary and open access journal published by International Association of Scientific Innovation and Research (IASIR), USA (An Association Unifying the Sciences, Engineering, and Applied Research)

‘Theurgism’ in the Fictional World of William Golding
Dr. Prakash Bhadury
Lecturer (English), NIT, Hamirpur, H.P., India
ABSTRACT: Theurgy usually is the practice of trying to gain the knowledge and conversation of one's Higher Self, or Inner God. Two inter related stages of development i.e. progression of the Self and progression of the World occur successively but until self is not purified one cannot do any good to the society as the individual is the unit of any given society and the fictional world of William Golding while showing the regression in the present day Godless world, ushers in the way to the transformation of the world via the individual souls to God’s timeless presence. Theurgist contribution has been unconscious percolation of the original purity of man and non-duality against essential human depravity. This paper explores how a religious mythopoeia is constructed in the background of spiritual void and moral relativism of the post–war era while showing, as a true evolutionist, that the secret of evolution is the manifestation of perfection which is already in every being. A pantheistic belief is insisted on attaining the mythic powers of perception for uniting the trinity of head, heart, and soul so that the whole man is born, who alone could be capable of right faculty of judgment and could avoid any distortions common to limited beings. The characters in Golding fiction prove the dignity and importance of human action through which they find a pattern that neither man nor can the world be made to fit in any rational formula. Volitional struggles help abjure the rough magic through conscious effort.

Theurgy, derived from Greek terms, was used in ancient times as a traditional religious purification ritual. It is formed by combining two terms namely, „theos‟, meaning gods and „ergeia‟, meaning work and together they express divine working or functioning of god (Wiki). Theurgy as a first recorded use of the term was found in the mid-second century neo-Platonist work, the Chaldean oracle and the source of Western Theurgy can be found in the philosophy of late Neo-Platonists especially Iamblichus. It holds that, “The spiritual Universe is a series of Emanations from the One. From the One emanated the Divine Mind (Nous) and in turn from the Divine Mind emanated the World Soul (Psyche)” (Theurgy, wiki). Neo-Platonist insisted that the One is absolutely transcendent and in the emanations nothing of the higher was lost or transmitted to the lower, which remained unchanged by the lower emanations. Although the Neo-Platonists are considered Polytheists, they embraced a form of monism. Later on, it was adopted by the magical wing of Platonism as a process of cleansing the lower aspects of the self to establish a foundation for higher philosophical contemplation. During the first centuries of the Common Era it developed into a distinct school and served as part of the same fusion of Platonic philosophy and popular occultism which gave birth to „Hermaticism‟ and many „Gnostics‟ traditions. The chief contributor to its formulation was Iamblichus of Chalcis (Bowker: 330).

A Christian interpretation of it is „divine action‟ and further interpreted it to be “the inducement of a direct action of God through a human agent” (Greer: 483-484). Theurgy calls on help from divinely powerful saints and angels who are intermediaries between God's power and common human being. It invokes the powers opposed to demonic forces and hence, in sharp...
tracking img