Analysis: The Character Satan in John Milton´s Paradise Lost

Analysis: The Character Satan in John Milton´s Paradise Lost

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“Milton's Satan is one of the most dynamic and complicated characters in all of literature.” Throughout Milton’s Paradise Lost, there are many primary motivations that Satan lives by. Although God told people that they are supposed to follow his guidance or be shunned from heaven, Satan decides to do so. He creates a very interesting, but at the same time, scary dynamic plot. When I think of what motivates myself to make the decisions I do, it is the thought that some day, I could end up in a place like that. Throughout Paradise Lost, written by Milton, there are many primary motivations that consequently guide Satan in his actions, revenge, power, and lastly, praise of his own followers.
First, Satan is guided throughout Paradise Lost by the revenge he wants God to deal with. He decided to go against the lord and live in the dark place where the damned go. Satan must live with the fact that he was one of the highest angels in heaven, but it still was not good enough to become a ruler along with god. He got mad, and lost his spot that he once held. “Arms to try what may be regained in Heav’n” (1: 270) These followers want to plot revenge by corrupting the human race and turning them against our lord. They use the two human’s god created, Adam and Eve, to do this deed with. Because of this, we will always have to deal with the anger and jealousy Satan creates. Throughout this story, there is a prominent motivation to get revenge against god because he chose his son against the highest angel being Satan.

Secondly, throughout this story, Satan is motivated by the power that he holds amongst everyone else. Before he decided to go against the lord, he was an angel of God. He found out that the lord was going to have a son who would guide beside him. Satan got very jealous because he thought that he deserved to rule with God, rather than his son. He got some of the angels who once supported the lord to then go against him. There was a fight between heaven and all of the fallen angels for power. Satan was warned that no one could beat heaven in the end, but he doesn’t believe so. He continues to want to fight, and states it is “better to reign in hell than to rule in heaven.

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” (1: lines 262) Satan tries to use secret weapons to win the fight, for this power, but the lord is inevitable. Throughout this story, he always shows that one of his main motivations is the need for power among his people.
Lastly, throughout this story, Satan uses the praise that he hopes to one day receive as his motivations of going against god. Many people in the world praise the lord as the father of the world, and know that he is the reason we are given a chance to live our life. He has so many followers, and Satan recognizes that he has more than himself. The angels make a place where they can go and plan all of their future fights against God and try and gain more followers at. In this place, Satan is the one who runs it and is praised for what he does by all of the people who believe that it is the right thing to do. In the end, Satan uses the praise he one day hopes to receive from his followers as motivation to rise against the lord.
Throughout Milton’s, Paradise Lost, Satan has some motivations that contribute to why he chooses to do the things that he does. The three most important are revenge, power, and lastly, praise. He is angry at god for choosing his son over Satan, therefore wanting revenge. He wanted power instead of having to follow in heaven and not rule. Finally, he wanted the praise that God got from his followers, although I think that he won’t ever get that much. He is very persistent in his plan to overthrow god by betraying the lord. He ultimately get’s sent to hell with all of his followers. After seeing what motivated Satan throughout his journey to become a ruler, how do you think that it affected his actions?

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