Jack Kerouac is known for his unique spirituality, an amalgamation of Catholicism and Buddhism. While raised a Catholic, Kerouac studied Buddhism extensively and seemed to have no trouble reconciling the two. In fitting with the frightened mood of the novel, Jack's spirituality is darkened in comparison to that of his alter-ego in On the Road. He wonders if all his religious studies have been fruitless, if his madness is the work of devils, and if God hates the world.
Jack's self-hatred is channeled in Big Sur as anger with God and religion.