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Monday, December 27, 2010

Religious References in The Legend of Zelda

This topic is is intended to be read and discussed in a mature and non offensive manner. If you cannot read this post without being offended, or cannot discuss the topic without behaving like a child, please click the back button.

Maybe it is because I am a follower of Christianity that these things are more obvious to me, but there are many references to Christian as well as Muslim and other Abrahamic religion symbolism in the Zelda series. I'm sure I'm far from the first person to pay attention to this, but I thought I would make an article to discuss such things.

First off, I'll talk about the original Legend of Zelda for NES. Link's shield has a cross on it. Quite possibly, this means nothing, and is more to be associated with the knights of the round more than anything. After all, many other media types such as anime also have things such as thin in them, but are not meant to be religious.
Then, also in the original, there is the Magic is the image.

Look like another book to you?

Next up is non other than the legendary triforce.
The triforce plays a huge role in the series, and is arguably, a religious symbol to the people of Hyrule. The three triangles of the triforce could be compared to the Holy Trinity. The Father(God), The Son(Jesus Christ), and The Holy Ghost(The Spirit thereof) could go hand in hand with the Triforce of power, the Triforce of Courage and the triforce of wisdom. Further more, newer Zelda games depict the Triforce with the form of a phoenix underneath it. How is this religious symbolism you ask? Think about it for a moment. in Christian religion, one is saved by Christ, and therefore "reborn" as a forgiven being. The phoenix dies, and is reborn from it's own ashes.

Next up is a symbol of Islam. The moon and star. It appears twice in Ocarina of Time, but was removed in reissued editions of the game at the request of many Islamic followers. Here is the image on the mirror shield. it also appeared on some movable blocks.

 At the request of many, Nintendo recalled all unsold copies of the game, and replaced the image with this.
While we're on the topic of OOT, the music in the Fire Temple in the version 1.0 cartridges such as mine contains Islamic chanting. Although it was actually just computer generated chanting not actually saying anything, many thought it sounded like "Allahu Akbar" which means "Allah is the Greatest!". this was also removes later.
*Please correct me if I am wrong about what the alleged words mean.

Also in OOT, Link gets eaten by a giant fish. Sound like a certain popular Bible story?

Furthermore, In Windwaker and all it's direct sequel on the DS, Phantom Hourglass, the entire world has been flooded, and in some timelines(please don't argue the timeline here. does it actually matter that much?), The Minish Cap is placed AFTER WW and said to take place in "New Hyrule"
***that is a fan theory, and not my own***

I will end my lengthy post with a link to a VERY interesting article. I'm sure you are familiar with the Tower of Babel. In the bible, men tried to build a tower to get to Heaven, and so God dispersed the people and made them all speak different languages so they could not communicate well enough to complete the project. This wasn't because it was actually possible to build a tower to Heaven, but rather to show them "You do NOT defy me!". anyway, I'm going a bit of course. Here is a link to an article called "The Message of Majora's Mask" by a Zelda fan under the alias "Hylian Dan". I think you'll find it an interesting read.

If you leave a reply or want to discuss this, PLEASE keep in mind the banner above my article.


  1. I'm a Muslim and you are right about the Fire Temple, when I played the game I was able to hear what we cal (Takbeer)means that Allah is the greatest, also there is another thing we call (Tawheed) it sounds like (La elaha ella allah) which means there is no God but Allah.

    What I think about including Religious references in Video games, I think there shouldn't be any of these references, I mean it could express wrong Ideas about religions, and maybe stories in video games are supposed to be something enjoyable for the gamers and not something religious, I really don't know where they are going with all this ????

  2. You forgot in Oracle of Ages, that Queen Ambi / Veran was trying to build a tower to the heavens.

    Well, Queen Ambi wasn't. She was just trying to build a tower high enough to see all of Labrynna so she could find her beloved.

    But VERAN was trying to build a tower to the heavens, so that she may take the power of the gods.

  3. Very good, I agree a lot of religious things in games, I am also a christian

  4. Thanks for the addition, Inu. and Ash, I certainly appreciate your information as well. And yes, Blog. If you are part of any religion, it is always on your mind, and therefore, you will see thins relating to it even in things that do not.