Essay: The Pilgrim’s Progress

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This essay discusses The Pilgrim’s Progress. In The Pilgrims Progress, John Bunyan allegorizes the Christian principle of salvation by relating the journey of a character named Christian who flees The City of Destruction in search of The Celestial City. The physical obstacle and characters he meets along his way symbolize the obstacles facing a Christian in the real path of life.

In The Pilgrims Progress, John Bunyan allegorizes the Christian principle of salvation by relating the journey of a character named Christian who flees The City of Destruction in search of The Celestial City. The physical obstacle and characters he meets along his way symbolize the obstacles facing a Christian in the real path of life. Bunyan’s use of this creative literary genre allows him to express complex religious ideas plainly, increasing their accessibility to the reader, and thus escalating their effect. He wanted to deliver the same message in a number of ways, which increases the instructive power of the tale, as can be seen in his description of Christian at the Slough of Despond, and then afterward at the Doubting Castle. The accessibility of the text is broadening by its wide-ranging appeal, achieved by its tale being set very much in the real world, with its particular Biblical and modern references.

Bunyan derides old school Christianity through the character of Mr. Worldly Wiseman, whom Christian meets after he has escaped The Slough of Despond and advises him. He invites Christian to live with him in The Village of Morality, and describes the act of reading the Bible as what happens to other weak men, who intrusive with things too elevated for them, do abruptly fall into distraction. (P 19) In this short exchange of discussion, we learn a great deal about the Worldly Wiseman, his disdain of Christian thinking and his dismissal of Evangelical counsels coming across very firmly.

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