Critial essay on paradiselost
The proper running of the universe requires the obedience of inferiors to their superiors. Justification of God's Ways Eternal Providence moves the story to a different level.
Without the fall, this divine love would never have been demonstrated. Belial recommended a slothful existence in Hell.
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However, Milton's idea of justification is not as arrogant as many readers think. Further instances of the crucial importance of both hierarchy and obedience occur in both large and small matters. So long as knowledge was withheld from man, his obedience to God was meaningless. God literally sits on a throne at the top of Heaven. This hierarchical arrangement by Milton is not simply happenstance. He uses images to reinforce the theme. Arousing his friends, he did his best to bring them to spirits, and decided that his purposes could be achieved by guile rather than by force; he decided to take revenge on God by spoiling his latest creation the Eden and the human beings there. If Man truly has free will, he must be allowed to exercise it. Eve, in her strange dream had been tempted to taste the fruit of the Tree of knowledge. Milton wishes to show that the fall, death, and salvation are all acts of a just God. This was the curse to man. Rather, Milton is concerned with drawing more imaginative and analytic attention to the figures of God, Satan , and Eve, attempting to get at their underlying motives and a more profound development of their characters than that which is offered in the Bible. He could do a number of things to prevent the fall, but he does nothing. Even when he uses English words, they have the Latin connotations beneath.
He replaced the eternal spring with the changing seasons; he created the violence and misery of storms, winds, hail, ice, floods and earthquakes; he sentenced Adam and Eve to expulsion from Eden.
By disobeying God, Eve has gained neither equality nor freedom; she has instead lost Paradise and brought sin and death into the world. It is in fact so unfamiliar to common language, even the usual literary language, that Dr.
Eve, in her strange dream had been tempted to taste the fruit of the Tree of knowledge.
A king was king not because he was chosen but because he was superior to his subjects. The purpose of Paradise Lost is, therefore, to assert eternal providence and justify the way of God to men.
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The worldview of the Middle Ages, Renaissance, and Restoration was that all of creation was arranged in various hierarchies. This idea then is the final point of Milton's theme — the sacrifice of the Son which overcomes Death gives Man the chance to achieve salvation even though, through the sin of Adam and Eve, all men are sinful. Adam, remembering the warning of Raphael, opposed her wishes, but Eve prevailed and the couple parted. Because of free will then, Adam and Eve disobey God and pervert the natural hierarchy. Just after eating the forbidden fruit, the couple knew lust for the first time. Her reasoning, from Milton's point of view, is incorrect. Thus Adam did a useful act while sinning. One problem is that Paradise Lost is almost militantly Christian in an age that now seeks out diverse viewpoints and admires the man who stands forth against the accepted view. Eternal Providence Milton's theme in Paradise Lost, however, does not end with the idea of disobedience. The image is one of the proper manners between inferior and superior. For example, at the point when he is questioned by the Son of God whether he sampled a fruit from the tree of knowledge, Adam is initially ambivalent about how he will respond. What man lost by disobedience was only a state of innocence and ignorance. Justification of God's Ways Eternal Providence moves the story to a different level. Satan's rebellion because of jealousy is the first great act of disobedience and commences all that happens in the epic.
And, just as frequently, readers and those casually acquainted with Paradise Lost misunderstand what Milton means by the word justify, assuming that Milton is rather arrogantly asserting that God's actions and motives seem so arbitrary that they require vindication and explanation.
Eve should not argue with her superior, Adam, but likewise, Adam, should not yield his authority to his inferior, Eve. Alone, Eve was accosted by the serpent, which flattered her into tasting the fruit of the Tree of knowledge.
In many ways, it makes God seem like a cosmic prig. The result is always the same — destruction.
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