Thursday, September 11, 2008

Faustus' Allegiance

Throughout the play of Dr. Faustus the reader sees a character, who's only interest is his present self. This character is Faustus. The play begins with Faustus' expressed desire to attain knowledge that no one else possesses. Through this wish one sees that above all Faustus values himself, but the reader also begins to see a picture of how Faustus is indifferent to everything except his surrounding, present world. We see this when we consider how Faustus so flippantly sold his soul. He is warned that if he sells his soul he will be damned to hell for eternity, yet he signs his soul away with almost no cares. From this sale he attains powers and pleasures that are limited to "earthly delights". It may seem that Faustus allies himself with Satan when he signs a pact with him, but the allegiance that Faustus sees himself as having is one with this world and what it has to offer.

However, in a way, the allegiance that Faustus thinks he has made solely with earthly desires is actually also made with Satan. The earth has been described as belonging to Satan, and as a Christian I believe this statement. I realize that I have been born into this world, but I don't feel like it is my true home. I believe that where God is, is my actual home. I try to "be in the world, but not of it". Also, from a Biblical standpoint one can look at the story of where Satan tempts Christ. Satan offers Christ parts of the world indicating that, he controls it. Now, I believe that God is all powerful, and plays an important role in the lives of many who live on earth, but I also believe that this is a fallen world, where Satan has immense power. So, when Faustus makes his deal thinking that he will have his worldly powers, he inadvertently dooms himself to damnation.

1 comment:

Brooke said...

"Be in the world and not of it". I love that you put that quote in your post, because while I was reading up until that point that's exactly what I was thinking about. Somebody should have told Faustus that! He thought that selling his soul would allow him to exceed the powers of this Earth, when really he was simply submitting himself to everything that is worldly. It's funny how ironic it is that he was trying to give himself over to receive supernatural abilities, when really he was simply condemning himself further to the mortal ways of the world.