LUCIFER AND JESUS: RIVAL SONS OF THE FATHER
Article first published online: 28 MAY 2010
© The author 2010. Journal compilation © Trustees for Roman Catholic Purposes Registered 2010
The Heythrop Journal
How to Cite
MADIGAN, P. (2010), LUCIFER AND JESUS: RIVAL SONS OF THE FATHER. The Heythrop Journal. doi: 10.1111/j.1468-2265.2010.00597.x
- Article first published online: 28 MAY 2010
Lucifer and Jesus may be used as historical ‘archetypes’ responding to a Father who makes excessive demands on his sons. The one rebels, the other obeys. I discuss the evolution of these archetypes through Plato's ‘Forms’, Plotinus' account of the mistaken and regrettable ‘fall’ of soul into matter, Milton's Paradise Lost (he expands Lucifer's rebellion from not accepting Jesus as the highest creature to disavowing the Father and usurping his place), and finally Dostoevsky's The Brothers Karamasov, where all the sons but Alyosha rebel against their overbearing father. Lucifer thus becomes an archetype to the modern imagination encapsulating one response to the inadequate father, or the father perceived as making excessive, and perhaps unacceptable, demands. Christ functions as a contrasting archetype, carrying forward an earlier, alternative response to a father filing an extraordinary request.