Three Seas Forum

the archives

dusted off in read-only


Is Kelhus a criticism of Jesus/religion? posted 15 July 2007 in Author Q & AIs Kelhus a criticism of Jesus/religion? by cloust, Commoner

Hi scott. Apologies if you've answered this question before.

One of the message I got from Kellhus in your books is a subthread of criticism towards Christianity.

I personally am not Christian, and I don't mean that statement in a negative way at all. Please hear me out.

The way I see it, Kellhus embodies many of the symbols of Jesus - he's a humble prophet unaware of his status as a prophet until he was a young man, who faces fierce opposition. He is 'crucified' on a Circumfix, and in his rescue from it is reborn (symbolically removing his heart from his chest). And now he is accepted as the true Prophet of the God.

Here's where I saw the criticism: Kellhus is not a Prophet. I know there's some confusion near the end with his meeting with his father, but I think we can still safely stay that.

He's a charlatan, a man who manipulated the people around him, who lies to further his own path in the world. He does not feel compassion or love or anything, and in fact views those as weaknesses of humanity, whom he sees as children. Even the whole rebirth thing, removing his heart from his chest was another trick, since he uses Serwe's heart.

He's the anti-Prophet, a charlatan and liar who manipulates people around him to make them think he's holy, when he's not. He's Satan, so to speak. He even admits that the No-God speaks to him, though whether thats because he's learned the Gnosis or not, i'm not sure.

So the man who embodies the characteristics of Jesus, is in reality the biggest liar of them all. Thats where I saw some criticism of Jesus or maybe even of organized religion. Kellhus's father beautifully sums it all up near the end of TTT.

In a way, I feel you've even tricked the readers into liking Kellhus, into falling for his wiles and charm and 'wisdom' as easily as those around him We root for him throughout all 3 books, (me included) even though on retrospect there's only one thing worth praising him for : he's opposed to sealing the world shut and so opposed to the Consult.

Its the skeptic in me that makes me look back and think why exactly i'm rooting for a man who really does embody some terrible characteristics. Thats what made me think that you've been playing with the readers a bit, and there's this deep thread of criticism underneath it all.

If it was intentional or not, its given me insight into myself. I fell for Kellhus just like the people around him who I pitied for being such saps. Who couldn't see past his tricks. It makes his type of personality more real to me, if that makes any sense.

Also I know you've dropped clues thorughout the books that maybe Kellhus has a conscience or can feel things. 1) He doesn't kill Cnaiur, even though the Logos tells him he should. 2) He feels for Serwe while hanging next to her. 3) He doesn't go along with his father in the end, in his plan to seal shut the world (which he forsees his father being a part of.)

This is all theoretical, i hope i haven't offended you or anybody else. It's just for the sake of discussion, and your books are definately my favorite fantasy books that i've ever read. view post


The Three Seas Forum archives are hosted and maintained courtesy of Jack Brown