Professor: Dr. Darrohn
07 October 2010
Spirituality in Nature
In the poem “Mont Blanc” by Percy Bysshe Shelley, there is a strong correlation conveyed between nature and spirituality. Although Shelley does not specifically mention any religious connotation, the words chosen in this poem could have more than one meaning. Perhaps Shelley purposely wrote “Mont Blanc” to have more than one meaning and has left it up to the reader to interpret and absorb this poem as it is suitable to him. I interpreted the poem to be about spirituality. I have found several connections in Shelley’s choice of words indicating spirituality in nature is possible, and it is up ...view middle of the document...
Another indication of spirituality is in the lines139-140 where Shelley writes, “The secret strength of things/Which governs thought”. I believe Shelley is inviting the reader to meditate to ponder life’s questions. Questions such as: What is the meaning of life? What is our purpose on earth? What is life after death? Or what is reality? There are many definitions to the word thought. Besides a traditional meaning of, “formation and arrangement of ideas in the mind”; the Oxford English Dictionary also states, “…with defining adjective: the ideas characteristic of thinkers of a particular type, school, religion, time, or place, or of a particular field of study; what is or has been thought by the philosophers, scholars, or students of a specified time, place, subject, etc.” (OED). This definition supports my theory of spirituality. Perhaps Shelley is provoking the reader to consider searching his inner depths of his mind; much like a philosopher does, to answer his life’s questions. Religion is also mentioned in the definition, further promoting the idea of spirituality.
After the consideration of the word thought, the poetic line continues with, “and to the infinite dome/ Of heaven is as a law, inhabits thee!”(140-1). The word dome in the Oxford English Dictionary has a specific reference to this time frame with the definition as, “A cathedral church.” In addition, it is also defined as, “the convex rounded summit of a mountain…” This shows a relationship with church and nature, more specifically, spirituality and nature. More curiously, Shelley has chosen to rhyme dome with home from line 136. Could Shelley be suggesting that when someone finds his spirituality, he is home? Possibly finding peace, infinitely as the original line suggests.
Line 141 drives home the spirituality theory quite simply, “Of heaven is as law, inhabits thee!” I believe Shelley is saying all of mankind is capable spirituality. It resides in the deep recesses of our minds waiting to be discovered. This is evident when the speaker uses the words “inhabits thee”. A
man’s soul resides in his heart and mind, and he is competent of deeper thought. This indicates a person, regardless of his belief or the level of intelligence, is capable of accessing the deeper recesses of his mind to find his spirituality. Whether or not man...