Death of the Dragon

by MW Cook

Francis Dolarhyde, antagonist in Thomas Harris’s Red Dragon wanted to become.

From childhood Francis understood his weaknesses. He was born with a deformed face – unable to speak properly. He was raised by his vicious grandmother who constantly told him what a horrible child he was. Francis understood his weakness. And he wanted to rise above it. He wanted to ‘Become’.

He lusted after the persona of the Red Dragon. He sought to Become the Red Dragon. To do this, he killed.

In the end, the Dragon got out of control. He tried to fight it, but it was too late. He had Become it already. And then he died.

I think, if we are honest, we can all relate a little with Francis. We understand our weaknesses. If we really dig deep, we see that we are seriously screwed up. If we ever want to do better, we must Become. Indeed, all of us will Become.

But what shall we become?

C.S. Lewis said that each human has within him the possibility of Becoming either god or devil. Which one?

Francis became a devil. He gave in to lust and shadow. He Became devil and died, as all devils must.

I think Christ beckons us to Become. Through him, he beckons us to Become like him. To become little Christs. Little (I say it reverently) gods.

We all must Become something. We cannot stay in this frail form forever. Light or darkness? Gods or devils? Life or death?

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