Does evil exist? There is no evil in the world because evil is only a matter of perspective. Once one’s body is outside of a situation, our mind analyzes the past and changes perspective. In many occasions, evil refers to people who strive in order to reach perfection in an imperfect world. Everyone has the ability to be good, but when the human’s soul is in search for perfection, people make errors that teach them or her to behave righteous. By realizing the subjective consciousness of the reality, humans tend to change their point of view and develop a new one. In Faust, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe introduces the life of a man, Faust, who is a restless striver with the infinite desire of ...view middle of the document...
The following discussion is between God and Mephistopheles, which shows how human naturally want to strive for more, but after looking back to what they have done to the earthly things they change their perspective.
He drives his spirit outwards, far,
Half-conscious of its maddened dart:
From Heaven demands the brightest star,
And from Earth, Joy’s highest art,
And all the near and all the far,
Fails to release his throbbing heart” (Goethe, 302-307)
“…A good man, in his darkest yearning,
Is still aware of virtue’s ways” (Goethe, 327- 328)
A person who wants to learn more, make mistakes. Although this man made mistakes, he becomes aware of it and reflects on his experience. In Faust, conscious and experience cannot be separate. Faust’s perspective changes when he is physically involve in his experience and when he is not. After he is out of the situation, he reflects and makes a man new judgment. The light was born from the darkness and although Faust makes error in the initial judgment, he is still part of the chain of light. This is demonstrated when God explains that even when Faust is in his darkest despair, he will still recognize the path to virtue. Mephistopheles describes Faust’s relationship with God as a human who wants and strives for everything but is stuck in the finite world. Faust wants the Earth and Heaven, but all that is near and all that is far does not satisfy him. Earthly matters do not satisfy him because it denies the striving for more. Even though heavenly matters allow him to go further, it can also dissatisfy him because he loses sight of the finite. This conveys that Faust will always want more but later on, his consciousness of the earthly matters makes him change perspective.
While they walk into town, Faust and Wagner see a poodle following them. Faust returns to his study room and starts translating the Gospel of John. The dog starts to growls and interrupts his study. When Faust uses the magic spell, the dog transformed into a human shape, Mephistopheles. Mephistopheles represents the excessive desire of attaining the physical things that provide satisfaction to humanity. Since he is in despair of his scholarly pursuits, he decides to sell his soul to the devil. While Faust is on Earth the devil will do everything he wants and in exchange Faust will have to serve the devil in hell. Faust’s infinite ambitions encourage him to sign the contract with his own blood.
You only feel the one yearning at best,
Oh, never seek to know the other!
Two souls, alas, exist in my breast,
One separated from another:
One, with its crude love of life, just
Clings to the world, tenaciously, grips tight,
The other soars powerfully above the dust,
Into the far ancestral height.
Oh, let the spirits of the air,
Between the heavens and Earth, weaving,
Descend through the golden atmosphere,
And lead me on to new and varied being! (Goethe,...