From reading this article and doing a little more research, it appears that Baudelaire believed that God didn't necessarily need to exist in order for religon to exist. Therefore, it seems as if he may not have believed in God but did have faith in some higher being. He may have simply used the idea of God and religious concepts as metaphors in his writing. However, his religious ideals still remain an enigma to me.
Baudelaire's poems are filled with so much passion/anger that he had to have influence from either religion or a higher being. Regardless of what he thinks of as religion or as his true god, he is getting inspiration from something.
Many of Baudelaire's poems reflect the idea that humanity has fallen and become corrupt. As if from a semi-religious viewpoint, Baudelaire finds that sins like lust, sadism, and laziness are abundant in society. As evident in "To the Reader," he feels that boredom is the worst, mainly because it leads you to commit other sins.
Baudelaire's poetry is remarkable for its theological ambivalence. Those who are religiously inclined can take his Christian references at face values, while others who do not practice the faith can interpret things more metaphorically or symbolically. I think that it is entirely possible to see Baudelaire as religious in the same manner as William Blake, whose book Songs of Experience was simultaneously dark, caustic, and religious.
Baudelaire definitly integrates religious ideals and theology into his poetry. However, it is difficult to tell whether Baudlaire does this in order to convey his Christian beliefs or whether he uses Christian ideals as something metaphorical and disassociated with religion. For example: Baudlaire often refers to original sin and humanities fall in his poetry. Because of original sin, Baudlaire stresses that mankind will perpetually be in a state of duality between good and evil. This can be interpreted as Baudlaire's struggle with Christianity or simply Baudlaire's attitude towards human nature.
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