Essay on Religious Confusion in Bless Me, Ultima by Rudolfo Anaya

678 Words 3 Pages
Religious Confusion in Bless Me, Ultima

Only a few books dare to discuss the confusion surrounded by a religious awakening. In Bless Me, Ultima, Rudolfo Anaya, challenges standard religion and brings in differnet ideas through the perspective of a young and confused boy. At the end of his struggle to understand, the boy reaches the peace of mind he was seeking.

Antonio, the young boy, wants answers to the questions that have been nagging at him since he was introduced to religious ideology. He does not understand why Ultima, a close elderly friend and a healer, can save his dying uncle from the curses of evil while the priest from El Puerto with his holy water and the power of God can not lift the curse from him. He wonders whether
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The people were not allowed to fish for the brown carp that lived in the river that flowed around the town. These fish were sacred to the gods. However(because of a drought and no food) the people had to eat the carp to survive. This angered the gods. They wanted to punish all the people by death. The god who loved the people wished to become a carp like them to protect them from the dangers of the river. The gods agreed and "because he was a god they made him very big and colored him the color gold" (74). Antonio can not believe there is a new god and seeks answers from Ultima. Ultima is pleased that he has learned so much but says she can not tell him what to believe for he must decide for himself.
The last idea Antonio learns about is the Catholic religion. This isn't new to him completely but he only knows what his mother has told him and what he has learned on Sundays at church. It is not until he starts going to catechism that he learns more about the religion his mother so dearly follows. He is still not happy even after his First Communion. He expects to hear God answer all his questions the second he drinks the wine but he hears nothing from the God. He doesn't know what to believe. The only thing that has proven completely worthy is Ultima and her magic.

Anaya's writing successfully integrates the confusion of a young boy who wants answers to topics over his head with a wonderful story. By weaving

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