The fall of the angel Lucifer and his subsequent reincarnation as Satan is on of the central mysteries of the western religions. Judaism, Christianity, and Islam share a common theme; that is, the battle for the universe between forces Satan and God. Tradition tells us of another universe, where Gods angels and Satans demons fight in a constant struggle for the future of man. Yet strangely these immortal enemies both have their origin in god. The legend tells us how Lucifer was the first among equals within the community of angels. In miltons paradise lost Satan describes his fall.Pride and worse ambition threw me down. Warring in heaven against heavens matchless king. All his good proved ill in me, and brought about malice.I thought that one step higher would set me highest, and boasted I could subdue heavens omnipotent.
Satans desire for power was the sin for which he was caste out of heaven. He was punished by God being exiled to the realm of hell and by becoming heavens tempter. As tempter it was the Satans duty to tempt and test man, to assure man would be worthy of redemption at heavens gate. In Goethes Faust god asks Satan if he finds anything on earth to be perfect, to which the devil replies no lord, I find it still a rather sorry sight. / Man moves me to compassion, so wretched is his plight / I have no wish to cause him further woe.. Satan himself would not tempt man, if it had not been his heaven assigned task. It is a task he does not like, yet is necessary task. Western theology believes that good can not exist without evil. An evil act must be committed for a good act to atone for it. Good, therefore, can not exist without evil, and the devil role must be played. In Dostoevskys The Brothers Karamazov the Devil tells us how he hates his role as the king of evil
I am perhaps the only one in all creation who loves truth and wishes good. I was there when the word who died on the cross ascended into heaven. I heard the joyful cries of the cherubim singing and shouting hosanna and the thunderous rapturous shouts of the seraphim that shook heaven and all creation. And I swear to you by all that is holy that I long to join the choir and shout hosanna with the rest. The word was forming in my throat, and almost escaped from my lips, but then i remembered my duty, and kept within my limits. Because i thought, what would happen after i shouted hosanna? Everything in the world would be extinguished, and there would be no more happenings. And so it was out of my sense of duty and in deference to my public image that i stifled the good impulses within me, and remained in my assigned position to take care of the dirty work. Somebody claims all the honor for the good works, leaving me nothing but foul play. But I did not covert the honor of living a life of deceit, for i am not vainglorious. So why must I be the only creature in all the world to be condemned to the curse of all descent people? I love men genuinely, and against the grain I serve because I am commanded to
The devil himself is not evil, nor is god. It is possible to conclude that is that man alone is responsible for his sin, and without evil in his own heart, no man can be led astray. Satan is a necessary figure in western religions, yet we must remember that we alone control our deeds. A man can not be perfect until he accepts his responsibilities, and accepts the limits of our world.