Robinson Crusoe Essay

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“The mastery of nature is vainly believed to be an adequate substitute for self-mastery,”- Reinhold Niebuhr. In Robinson Crusoe, by Daniel Defoe, there are many different themes throughout the whole book. Robinson shows mastery of survival, happiness has to be accepted, complications distract you from living, and true happiness comes only after true misery. He proves that he can grow as a person and survive through all the obstacles that are thrown at him First, Robinson Crusoe shows that mastery is essential to human survival, his success in mastering his situation, overcoming his obstacles, and controlling his environment shows the condition of mastery in a positive light, at least at the beginning of the novel. Crusoe lands in an inhospitable environment and makes it his home. His taming and domestication of wild goats and parrots with him as their master illustrates his newfound control. His mastery over nature makes him a master of his fate and of himself. Early in the novel, he frequently blames himself for disobeying his father’s advice or blames the destiny that drove him to sea. But in the later part of the novel, Crusoe stops viewing himself as a passive victim and strikes a new note of self-determination. In building a home for himself on the island, he finds that he is master of his life. Secondly, Robinson shows that acceptance is required for happiness by him realizing that he needs to live his life the right way. Crusoe sees the necessity to repentance, he realizes that he must live his life morally that way God will help him in his times of need. This moral and religious dimension of the story is indicated in the Preface, which states that Crusoe’s story is being published to instruct others in God’s wisdom, and one vital part of this wisdom is the importance of repenting one’s sins. While it is important to be grateful for God’s miracles, as

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