Study Guide

The Fault in Our Stars Religion

By John Green


Chapter 1
Hazel Grace Lancaster

I'd learned this from my aforementioned third best friend, Peter Van Houten, the reclusive author of An Imperial Affliction, the book that was as close a thing as I had to a Bible. (1.65)

Can we consider An Imperial Affection to be a kind of religion for Hazel? Does she think of it like that?

Chapter 2

"Everyone was so kind. Strong, too. In the darkest days, the Lord puts the best people into your life." (2.33)

Obviously, Augustus's household is a little more than religious than Hazel's. For proof, see: Encouragements. Does this create any sort of divide between Hazel and Augustus?

Chapter 10

"I'm just saying: maybe scrambled eggs are ghettoized, but they're also special. They have a place and a time, like church does." (10.61)

What is the place and time for church, according to Augustus Waters?

Chapter 11
Augustus "Gus" Waters

"Really?" I asked. I was surprised. I'd always associated belief in heaven with, frankly, a kind of intellectual disengagement. (11.94)

Augustus has some pretty interesting ideas about what the afterlife entails. Even if he's not super-religious, it helps him contemplate his impending death. Hazel Grace gets her mind opened a bit when she realizes it's possible to be religious and intellectual. Fancy that.

Chapter 12
Hazel Grace Lancaster

Maybe some people need to believe in a proper and omnipotent God to pray, but I don't. (12.174)

Even though Hazel's not at all religious (in the organized religion sense), she still feels the need to pray when things are dire. She loves Augustus and is willing to go against her intellectual beliefs to try for a miracle.

Chapter 19
Hazel Grace Lancaster

[…] his dad put an arm around me and kissed the side of my head and whispered, "I thank God for you every day, kid." (19.39)

Augustus's parents really do see Hazel as a source of solace in their time of need. And even though she doesn't believe in a God, she accepts their faith.

Chapter 21
Hazel Grace Lancaster

Augustus did not die after a lengthy battle with cancer. He died after a lengthy battle with human consciousness, a victim—as you will be—of the universe's need to make and unmake all that is possible. (21.24)

Hazel's responses to religious sentiment don't always go over well. Is her cynical take on the way of the world just a coping mechanism? Or is that just how she sees things?

Chapter 22

"In heaven, Augustus will finally be healed and whole," implying that he had been less whole than other people due to his leglessness (22.13)

Well, that's kind of offensive.

Hazel Grace Lancaster

I went on spouting bulls*** Encouragements as Gus's parents, arm in arm, hugged each other and nodded at every word. Funerals, I had decided, are for the living. (22.20)

Even if she doesn't believe a word of it, Hazel cannot deny Augustus's parents the comfort of their spirituality.