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The Consequences of the Deal with the Devil

At the beginning of this story, the author shows how the main character, doctor Faustus considers the study of religion is a waste of time. But it is easy to guess that by the end of the story he might change his mind. Throughout all the variety of magic adventures and bizarre travels, Faustus seems to have problems avoiding the topic of religion. Several times he finds himself questioning the nature of redemption and hell. However religion shadows him through his slow trip to eternal suffering, and Faustus never realizes how important religion really is in his life, or the role it will sooner or later play in the destiny of his soul. Faustus is tired with the old fashioned types of knowledge existing to him. He desires more than reason, medicine, law, and religion. He needs mystic and magic. Faustus’ associates, Valdes and Cornelius, begin to introduce him into those dark powers, which he practices to call an evil spirit named Mephistopheles.

Faustus tells Mephistopheles to return to his master, Lucifer, with an offer of his soul in exchange for twenty four years of having Mephistopheles, and all his knowledge of magic, at his beck and call. By doing this he condemns himself for something very insignificant, something that later will understand.
Later in the story Mephistopheles goes back to Faustus with a contract for his soul, which Faustus signs with his own blood. This action is one of his several mistakes. As soon as he signs the contract, words appear on his arm, which lead him to the conclusion, that the consequences of the contract will be horrible, and he starts to question himself if that is what he really wanted. Mephistopheles settles down Faustus’ doubts by giving him valued gifts and a book of invocations to learn.
One example of Faustus’ irrationality is his use of an extended, elaborated invocation to call a devil, only to be told by the demon that simple insolence for God would have been sufficient to provoke a devil to show up. Well along in the story, Mephistopheles responses all Faustus' questions about the nature of the world, and the demon rejects to answer when Faustus wants to find out who created the cosmos. This sets off another series of questions in Faustus, but Mephistopheles and Lucifer silent those hesitations by bringing in the seven deadly sins in human form to perform for Faustus.
At some point of the story Faustus ends up going to the papal court, where he torments Pope Adrian for his passing decision on an opposing pope, by making himself invisible and thieving Pope Adrian's food and spanking his ears. He becomes well-known for this, and he is later asked to visit the German leader, Charles V, who is the rival of Pope Adrian. Faustus impresses the emperor by raising up an image of Alexander the Great. One of the emperors' knights’ condemnation at Faustus' magical powers and Faustus punishes him by making horns grow from his head.
As the conclusion of his contract approaches, Faustus starts to fear his awaiting fate, and has Mephistopheles call up Helen of Troy so that he might impress a group of his associates. An old man that was part of that group, impulses Faustus to regret, and turn back to God, but he directs the demon to tortures the old man, and take him out of the way. Faustus then command up Helen again so that he might submerge himself in her ancient magnificence. But time grows short. Faustus, full of terror, admits his offenses to a group of his associates, who promise to pray for him.
Another example of is irrationality occurs when Faustus proclaims that he is unafraid of hell. Still another appears when he says he is indifferent with “these vain trifles of men’s souls.” Of course, he ends up very concerned with such “trifles” by the time the tragedy ends. Faustus’ vanity persistently leads him to say foolish things, but, rather than evoking simple happiness, his foolishness also leads him in a straight line to eternal punishment and pain.
On the last night of his life, Faustus is overwhelmed by fear and regret. He supplicates for forgiveness, but it is too late. The clock marks midnight and a group of devils enter Faustus' room to claim his soul. The next day, his coworkers find his body ripped from head to toes, and decide to give him a proper funeral.
This last part of the story shows Faustus very different compared to the beginning of the story, he is now seeking forgiveness from a god that never existed in his life. Faustus is presented at first as a man that rejects just about all forms of institutionalized belief structures, and he asking his associates to pray for him makes the story very interesting with a very clear and deep message to the reader. In other words the personification of atheism ended up believing in something it was against his doctrine.

Works Cited
Greenblatt, Stephen, and M. H. Abrams. The Norton Anthology of English Literature. Vol. B. New York: W.W. Norton, 2012. 1128-163. Print.…...

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