“There is something at work in my soul, which I do not understand.”
Mary Shelley – Frankenstein
What started off as a friendly writing contest between friends transformed the world of fiction forever. The English author, Mary Shelley, her future husband, Percy, Lord Byron, and John Polidori decided to compete with one another to see who could write the best horror story. The product of this venture was Frankenstein, one of the best known horror novels ever composed.
Let’s examine this work, and see if we can discover what made it “spring to life”:
Examining the Danger of Technology
This book is often attributed as creating the Science Fiction genre. It was one of the first times that a fictional character turned to science to attempt to solve man’s greatest problems. The result, of course, was a terrifying disaster as the technology became impossible to control. Now there are millions of science fiction novels which explore how mankind might turn to technology to solve problems in the future, and the dangers that this may create.
Examining the Heart of Man
What is most interesting about Frankenstein, however, is that the goal of the “mad scientist” known as Victor Frankenstein was not to put others in danger. His goal was to discover the secret of eternal youth – something that thousands of men and women have longed for. His attempt at finding his own way to eternal life, however, led him to create an absolute monster.
The Way of Death
The message of Frankenstein reminds me of Proverbs 14:12, which states that “there is a way that men think is right, and its ways are the ways of death.”
We all long for eternal life, because our hearts were created for eternity. Deep down, we know that we were meant to live with God forever. The problem comes when we try to take matters into our own hands and solve this eternal problem on our own. When we do this, we find nothing but misery and death.
Thankfully, finding eternity isn’t up to us. Jesus Christ has made a way for us to live forever with Him, and says, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life, no man comes to the Father but by Me” (John 14:6).
Choose to follow Christ and find eternal peace, or try to experiment with eternity on your own… the choice is yours.
Photo Credit: Frankenstein, by Andre Ribeiro. National Museum of Cinema – Turin, Italy. CC BY 2.0 License.
This post was submitted as part of the A to Z Challenge, where participants agree to write an article that corresponds to each letter of the alphabet, posting every day of the month of April (except Sundays).
Here on The Artistic Christian, my theme for the month is The Classics. Each day I’ll examine a book, film, or work of art that has become a beloved classic and discuss what has made it such a success, and what eternal themes it contains that Christian artists can use as modern illustrations.
For daily reflections from my personal travels around the world, check out my companion blog, A Shepherd’s Reflections, where my theme for April is Reflections From Around the World.