Decoding the myth of dark side

Every year on auspicious eve of Dussehra, the gigantic effigy of demon Ravana is burnt to celebrate the victory of good over evil. In the battle between good and evil, goodness is victorious while the evil is vanquished. What if the existence of evil perished? We will never acknowledge the value of peace, goodness and harmony. To maintain the significance of goodness, evil must exist. Despite all these theories we learn in ancient scriptures, why do we crave for the darker side? Why people love evilness? There is a dark side to every individual on this earth. Though science and technology has made tremendous development, there are some sects of people who still crave for super natural powers from God or demonic forces. Human sacrifices are made to please God. Isn’t that absurd? In rural side, such practices are carried out by tantriks, Aghoris and God men.

If we read literature, writers like Shakespeare, H.G.Well and Oscar Wilde have explained about the passion of people for dark powers. Bewitched by the predictions of witches, Macbeth unleashes his dark side by slaying the king Duncan of Scotland and declares himself the emperor of Scotland. But his passion for power becomes the cause of his downfall and his ultimate death. Even the dark moor Othello who is so obsessively in love with his wife Desdemona ends up killing his own wife. His insecurity and suspicious thoughts unleashes his dark side.

In the novel ‘The strange case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde’, Dr. Henry Jekyll creates a potion to bring out a scientific miracle. But the results are adverse and horrifying. Jekyll transforms into a deformed, evil personality named ‘Mr. Hyde’ who goes on committing crimes in dark of night. Hyde is the alter-ego & the darker side of Dr. Henry Jekyll. Even the novel – Invisible man was about the dark side of invisibility where a maniac scientist creates havoc in a town with invisible powers only to die later in the climax. Oscar Wilde’s character – Dorian Gray craves for youthfulness and makes a deal by selling his soul. For every crime Dorian commits, his portrait becomes disfigured but he stays youthful as ever. He is so obsessed for this evil youthfulness that he fails to realize that he is heading for path of doom. Whether it is the vampire Dracula or the Frankenstein monster, evil has taken several forms to make its presence felt.

In the Hollywood motion picture – Dracula untold, a knight makes a deal with a devil to save his city from invaders. Though the knight gains super natural powers to beat the enemies, he also realizes his dark side – The Dracula, a blood sucking vampire that survives on blood of humans, especially beautiful damsels. When our desires and dreams aren’t fulfilled through noble ways, the mind starts getting corrupted and begins scheming evil plans. Even the superheroes have a darker side to them. In Spiderman 3, Peter Parker gets affected by the presence of an extra-terrestrial force which brings grey shades to his personality both as Parker and Spiderman. The radiation has such an adverse impact on Dr. Bruce Banner that he can’t resist turning into a green monster called Hulk. People idolize dark forces. The incomplete desires sometimes unleash the monster in us. Especially in unrequited love affairs, people have turned into psychopath/serial killers. Whether it is Jack the Ripper or the deadly psychotic Poison Ivy (seductress from Poison Ivy movie series), people have idolized such dark characters. According to psychology, our mind thinks from both views – positive as well as negative. It is the negative view that corrupts our mind and brings out the evil in us. It is up to us to tame our mind towards good thoughts.

Evil will persist as long as goodness survives.

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2 thoughts on “Decoding the myth of dark side

  1. A thought-provoking article on the ever-present nature of evil in the face of goodness and optimism all around. As it can be proven, darkness or the side of the Devil has lasted as long or even longer than the protective shadow of God’s mercy and goodness on all. I really like the way how you have compared so many characters from great novels, stories, legends and films and united them in one common aspect- that something wrong in their lives, some tragic incident or some unfulfilled life was responsible for pushing him or her over the edge.

    Loved your research and emotionally resonant writing as always. To sign off, I would like to quote a line from the song ‘Sympathy For The Devil’ by The Rolling Stones.

    ‘I watched with glee
    While your kings and queens
    Fought for ten decades
    For the gods they made

    I shouted out,
    “Who killed the Kennedys?”
    When after all
    It was you and me

    Let me please introduce myself
    I’m a man of wealth and taste
    And I laid traps for troubadours
    Who get killed before they reached Bombay

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