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Western Christian Themes In Naruto

orochimaru.jpg

In Naruto, there are many allusions and references to eastern culture and philosophy (as my co-writer Felix will get to later/said previously).  What isn't talked about is the number of allusions to Christianity within Naruto.  In fact, if you look at it from a Western perspective, the major plot of Naruto could be based off of many Christian themes. Let's start with the Sage of The Six Paths. From a western perspective, the Sage would be God/Jesus himself.  He came to the world, created the ninja world and rid the world of evil (the Ten-Tails).  Before he dies (In Christianity, this would be when God leaves Earth), he splits his body/ideals and chakra into his two sons, the Senju Ancestor and the Uchiha Ancestor.  One believed peace was the way to bring balance (Senju), and one believed power and force was the way to control (Uchiha).  Note that neither one is truly “bad,” but these two clashing ideals create the basis for the plot of Naruto.

The next two paragraphs will focus on the Senju and Uchiha.

The Senju, the one who believe peace is the way to achieve balance in the world, exemplify this with their actions as well as their ninja abilities.  For example, Hashirama Senju is known for being the strongest ninja of all time.  His chakra had “life bringing” properties, hence how he was able to create forests and was known as the best medical ninja ever.  Even his granddaughter, Tsunade, was a legend for her healing techniques, which were stated to have been the best since her grandfather. The Senju were also not a warring clan, like their counterparts the Uchiha.  They only war when absolutely necessary, and when they do, they try their hardest to make peace and come to compromises and make treaties and alliances (i.e., their alliance with the Uzumaki clan and the Land of Whirlpools, which is still referenced in the modern ninja world, as all Konoha Chunin and Jonin wear the symbol of the now defunct Land of Whirlpools on the back of their flak jackets and on their sleeves).  I believe that the Senju represent Christianity as a whole.  However, as it's taught in Christianity, no one is perfect.  This is exemplified in the Second Hokage, who's research in Impure World Resurrection created the central conflict in present day Naruto World.

Now we have the Uchiha.  The Uchiha can represent many things in Christianity.  Say if we compare the sons of the Sage of The Six Paths to Cain and Abel of the Bible, then the Uchiha could be the descendants of Cain, whose whole lineage was cursed by God after he killed his brother.  We see this by the the Uchiha's defining feature: The Sharingan.  The Sharingan is the Uchiha's main weapon.  If we analyze the features of the Sharingan, it's main purpose is to copy, and to cast illusions.  The sharingan also features tomoe, which look like sixes.  A fully matured Sharingan has three tomoe, or three sixes.  Three sixes in Christianity is the sign of the Mark of the beast.  All of the eternally damned after the Rapture are marked with signed, doomed to eternal conflict and punishment.  Exceptionally powerful Uchiha's (Specifically Madara Uchiha and Obito Uchiha), can use their Sharingan to exert their will and bind Tailed Beasts (which are demons) to their control.  It is also noteworthy to point out that the primary goal of Madara Uchiha is to trap the world in a never-ending illusion, via his Sharingan and the Ten-Tailed Demon.  Uchiha are also abnormally adept Fire Jutsu masters, as most use signature Fire justus and skilled ones can learn them at young ages (Itachi and Sasuke).

Satan in Naruto is most likely represented by Orochimaru. Obviously, the snake references give this away. Also, Orochimaru's story is similar to Satan/Lucifer.

Orochimaru was once in high graces, and regarded as a legendary ninja (and still is).  However, his thirst for power led to his corruption, and he fell from graces.  Now, his goal is immortality,  and he's assembled a group of followers (Otogakure: The Sound Village) to aid him in that goal and the destruction of the ninja world.  He gains his followers by trickery and deception, similar to how Satan is portrayed in the Bible. His influence never goes away no matter how many times he is defeated, and his follower Kabuto uses his influence and power to create the Forth Ninja War.   Also, note how Orochimaru is persistent in his quest to corrupt an Uchiha (first Itachi, now Sasuke) because of their Sharingan, even going as far as branding Sasuke with the Cursed Seal of Heaven (which is also a three tomoe mark).  The name of this seal is interesting, because as previously stated, the three sixes are Satan's mark, and Satan is a fallen and damned angel who previously resided in Heaven.  So the fact that the Cursed Seal of Heaven is a three tomoe mark and Orochimaru, the snake, administers the seal (also notice he turns into a snake to administer the seal).

Now, the Jesus character in Naruto is in fact Naruto.  Naruto is the child of prophecy that the Grand Toad Sage informed Jiraiya of in the past.  The child of prophecy was said to be the one who would rid the world of evil and bring peace to the ninja world like the Sage of Six Paths before him.  This could be an allusion to the Second Coming or Christ as stated in the Book of Revelations.  More Christ allusions include that the he bears the strongest demon inside him, which could be a representation of the ultimate sin that Christ carries with him.  Note how Naruto is currently fighting the strongest of the Uchiha, Obito and Madara, who both have the strongest Sharingans that we know of.  This battle holds the fate of the ninja world in its hands.

This entire article is entirely speculation.  This is just something I noticed within the themes and plot of Naruto, and decided to expound on it outside of a few tweets.  I hope that whoever reads this finds it interesting

- Dave