The Damnable Life of Faust

Faustus the Speculator, the Doctor of Divinity; who was not content with himself or his life, and wanted more. He was an intelligent worldly man who had students that admired him. But Faustus was not content with his knowledge and focused on studying Necromancy, day and night. After studying charms, enchantment, soothsaying, and witchcraft he called himself an Astrologian and Mathematician. He became so obsessed with his new knowledge that he decided to conjure the Devil. Faustus seeks the devil because he wants more knowledge, wisdom and immortality. This pact would be his demise. How could he be so smart and not realize that he was dealing with the King of the dark side, who lives by deceit and deception.

The night that Faustus decided to conjure the devil, turned out to be the beginning of the end. The Devil made himself known and accepted Faustus request. The Devil promised to give Faust wealth, knowledge, wisdom and immortality. In exchange for these wonderful things, the Devil wanted his body and soul, also for Faust to rebuke any Christian belief and anything that could influence him back. Faust was doubtful but the Devil was able to bully him into making the pact. In order to complete the pact, Faust had to finalize the pact by signing with his blood. Faust congeals and the blood won’t come out. This makes Faust doubt for a bit and wonder if this is a sign from God. He wonders if he should continue. But his greedy ambition driven desire and weak mind allows the Devil to distract him and bully him into signing. This is the first situation where I saw some contradictions because it was stated in the story that Faust did not believe that there was a God, Hell or Devil.

The Devil gives Faust a server named Mephistopheles who will bring Faust anything he wants. This turns out to be the only good deed that the Devil gives to him. Everything else that Faust gets is temporary, false and full of deceit. As so is Fausts side of the bargain because from the beginning Fausts plan is to somehow gain so much knowledge that he will be able to outsmart the Devil and take over his place in hell, and undo his pact- saving his life. So from the beginning neither side planned to uphold the pact. Faust had no intention to really become one of the Devils sincere followers and the Devil had no intention to give Faust the powers he had asked for.
Faust became lonely and wanted a companion. Faust lived with a man named Christopher Wagner and his invisible servant Mephistopheles. Faust asked Mephistopheles for a wife. But Mephistopheles warned him that he could not have a wife since marriage was a religious ceremony of God- and he could not serve two Gods. Faust persisted and this leads the Devil to send Faust a message. The Devil sends a strong wind through his house, it is so strong that it scares Faust and he prays to the Devil and shuns his desire to have a wife. So the Devil began to trick Faust into thinking that he was gaining knowledge and power by giving a book to help him gain more insight into becoming one with the Devil instead of one with God.

Faust began to inquire about the Devil, earth, and hell. He asks Mephistopheles several questions like how did the Devil become a fallen angel? How was hell made? What is the meaning of the stars? Mephistopheles asks the Devil for permission to answer such questions, permission is granted only because the Devil wants Faust to feel like he is gaining knowledge. So the story goes that the Devil was once one of Gods best angels. But he wanted to be God not just an angel- just like Faust. God threw him from heaven and he became a fallen angel. Hell was made and he now holds the thrown to hell. Mephistopheles cannot answer his questions concerning the stars because only God knows of such things. Faust is warned to remember of his pact and that he is not supposed to seek knowledge of Christianity.

One night Faust dreams of hell and when he awakes, he requests to see hell for himself. Mephistopheles carries Faust through the air and takes him to hell but since he is asleep when this happens he doesn’t get to see where hell really is. But this satisfies Faust. Faust is given a second book that helps him become a master of disguise; he is able to turn himself into a dragon, this also helps Faust have more faith in the Devil. Faust requests to see the whole world and the Devil complies; Faust is able to see everything around the world even the inside of buildings, he even recognizes several churches. During his world travels Faust is invited into homes and asked questions pertaining to astrology but he knows nothing of these things, only what he has known all along- so what knowledge has the Devil given him? Faust does not become more knowledgeable only more manipulative. For instance, when he trades his horse that turns into straw and when he borrows money from a Jew and offers him his leg instead when he is not able to pay him. The leg has no value to the Jew and throws it away, when he returns to ask for his money, Faust asks for the leg. The Jew doesn’t have the leg so Faust turns the tables and tells him that now he owes him. Faust is becoming manipulative and deceitful.

In the end Faust is ripped into pieces by the Devil. He never repents only makes sure that he tells his students of what he has done and what he has learned. God is the only way and the only truth. The Devil took Fausts life in the midnight hour. His students find his body shortly after. In life we can all relate to Faustus, we’re never satisfied and want more. At one point Faust while lying in bed begins to talk to God, and for a moment almost repents. But his stubbornness and proudness forbids him to follow through. He tricks himself into thinking that it’s too late for God to forgive him because he has denied him already. I can relate to Faust in this sense because we are our own worst enemy. We stop ourselves from doing good and doing right because of our own insecurities.

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