Thursday, June 29, 2017

Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple.

The last chapter of The Fall redeems the irritating monologue that precedes it, in fact is only possible because of that monologue, only has meaning because of that annoying narration. The weakly-argued theology, the self-centered philosophy, are all the point, a representation of an egotist's misreading of the Gospel. The narrator wants to believe he is a modern-day prophet, a John the Baptist crying in the desert, passing judgment on all mankind, standing above civilization. But when he says, "Open the window a little, please; it’s frightfully hot. Not too much, for I am cold also" we know that his deeds are known and he is lukewarm, so he is spat from Christ's mouth, alone in his cell with the ironic evidence of his crimes, not quite always convinced of his superiority. He is in hell, a hell of his own making.

"I am happy, I tell you, I won’t let you think I’m not happy, I am happy unto death!"

A pretty good book. I'd forgotten how it ends.

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