The choice being a choice between what is good and what is evil, the choice between God and Satan. Because God is loving, just, and caring, He allows a place for evil on earth to test his creation’s obedience and allegiance to Him. But, for Milton to hypothesis that Satan is a hero for being the fallen angel, is a mere overshoot and over-glorification of something that is evil, sinful and demonic. Satan is not the hero of anything, but in a way is a necessary component of the plan that God had for his creation, mankind. For without the temptations of Satan, there would be no need for Christ to come to earth as a man and sacrifice himself on a cross to save us from the fiery pits of Hell.
Satan could be described in many terms, and by many people, but all can be disputed. According to my sources, Satan is displayed as the hero, while God is the evil deity, and Milton was wrong for writing Him as so. In this essay, I will show my thoughts on the subject of Satan as an evil deity, and other’s opinions on the matter. Satan is thought of as the tragic hero in Book 1 and 2 of Paradise Lost because he is shunned by God for trying to overthrow Him, and being ambitious enough to think he could be God. Satan, in my opinion, is not as much an evil individual, but more juvenile, and ignorant.
It could be argued that the flaws in Satan’s character is such that we should feel no admiration toward him and neither fear or pity him but he can be seeming to inspire these emotions. Clearly this is seen when Milton states Satan’s tragic flaws such as envy, pride, and his ambition towards self-glorification. Satan’s pride is stressed throughout Paradise Lost. The important part to remember here is that Satan knows his weaknesses and flaws in his character through out the book. In Heaven, Satan’s pride convinces him that he is equal to God and thus sparks his ambition to defy God and challenges him for a democracy, while being envy at God’s appointment of his Son, this gives Satan the final excuse to challenge God’s
In Paradise Lost, Satan says “He deserved no such return From me, whom He created... ... middle of paper ... ...alizes how good and powerful God actually is when God shows Adam and Eve mercy after they disobey Him. Milton proves to be on God’s side in many ways throughout Paradise Lost Including man’s free will, God’s creation, and God’s mercy. Even though he gives a greater description for Satan, Milton’s faith in God is seemingly more powerful. Paradise Lost proves that God’s Creation “is indeed the very exercise of God’s goodness which is apparent in all God’s works” (Sewell 125). Only God knows what is on the road ahead for mankind, but according to Milton God beholds the “…past, present and future” (III 77-78).
If Satan would choose neither to assent nor to dissent, thereby refusing to exercise his free will, he would be discarding his free will. But this is impossible, as the demons determine in counsel in Book II; so long as he exists, Satan must make choices with respect to his possible obedience to God. If Satan's first mistake was to completely divorce his free will from God's power in giving him that freedom, his second mistake occurs in his conception of what it means to exercise that freedom. God says that "Not free, what proof could they [Satan et al.] have given sincere/Of true allegiance"?
Regardless of the reasons for Lucifer and his angels’ fall in the York play and Lucifer’s fall in the Chester play, the fundamental idea in both plays is that evil consists in perverted free-will and the influence of this perversion will rise to its highest value if the will is in conflict with conscience. Obligations towards others is important than obligations towards ourselves. Respect to our own selves obligates us to be faithful and renounce any self-deceit. Only then will we enter into a spiritual relationship with God. Unfortunately, in both the York and the Chester play, Lucifer chooses to serve his creative and perverted free-will by succumbing to its evil intentions.
In book one, Milton’s portrayal of Satan makes us uneasy because we relate to his actions, which are ordinary human responses to similar situations. It is troubling to say that in this particular poem, Satan resembles humans. However, our human nature is to have an instant reflex to justify our actions without taking any responsibility, which resembles the way Satan justifies his mischievous acts in this poem. Most of the time, we would never think of Satan as a victim; yet, we find ourselves discovering our human nature in Satan’s rationalizations. So, what humanizes this monstrous figure?
Milton is able to do this because it is always worse, and more shocking to see a liked individual reveal himself to be bad, than to always know a bad individual to be bad. Thus, the initial support that Satan gains from readers is designed to alienate him further when his evil side prevails. As the character of Satan progresses, the reader becomes less willing to accept Satan’s goal of freedom of choice. This is... ... middle of paper ... ...n. Satan’s goal of freedom of choice has been lost in his hate. This aspect of Satan serves as the final stage in a reader’s transition from viewing Satan as the brave leader of a just cause, to viewing him as a lowly coward.
A Free Will to Choose Between Good and Evil Webster dictionary defines Theodicy as “Defense of God’s goodness and omnipotence in view of the existence of evil” (Webster Dictionary). We ultimately cannot eliminate evil and suffering but those whom have a strong faith in God often seem to find inner peace. The bible tells us “for there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not” (King James Version, Ecclesiastes 7:20). All humans are, by nature, sinful and condemned and in reality no one really is good. We are far more interested in pleasing ourselves than we are in pleasing the one who made us.
Through Satan’s opinions on God, we can both acknowledge Satan’s pride and how it reflects our own prideful tendencies. We can recognize Satan’s prideful nature through his conversation Beezelub regarding their descent into hell: Here for his envy, will not drive us hence: Here we may reign secure, and in my choice To reign is worth ambition though in Hell: Better to reign in Hell, then serve in Heav'n. (insert lines) From the beginning of this text, when Satan stresses “His envy,” we become aware that Satan believes God truly envies him. Typically, one only has envy for someone who is on his or her level or superior to him or her. By believing that God envies him, Satan argues that God sees him as equal to him.