In John Milton’s Paradise Lost, he tells of Satan’s banishment from Heaven. He and his brigade have plotted war against God and are now doomed to billow in the fiery pits of hell. Satan is a complex character with many meaningful qualities. The relationship between Satan’s qualities and Hell’s atmosphere tell the reader more about why they seem to go hand in hand. Without Satan’s features and Hell’s tormenting aspects, the place would not be all it is.
Milton states that one will “dwell in adamantine chains and penal fire” if he defy’s God. Satan definitely defied him and will therefore suffer this. Chains are symbolic of Satan in that they will tie one down and keep him under control. Satan has disobeyed God and needs to be tied restrained and controlled. The fire is only to show Satan’s primary intentions. Fire indicates evil and pain, both of which he is a part of. He is the creator of evil just as God is the creator of all.
Milton also describes Hell as a place that one must dwell in forever more full of wrath with no happiness and constant pain. Satan once lived in a universe full of happiness, joy, and surrounded by pleasure. Now that he has forsaken God, he must live without those, but to the worst extremes. No more content or delight can he experience. He must be punished for his unfaithfulness.
Hell has “no light, but rather darkness served only to discover sights of woe.” It is a “region of sorrow, doleful shades, where peace and rest can never dwell, hope never comes…but torture without end still urges.” This is an atmosphere severely unlike the one from which Satan came. He was willing to give up all he had, peace, love, joy, beauty, and all alike, to overcome God and gain all of His power.
The war in Heaven was between forces of Satan and forces of God. Because of Satan’s involvement in this war, he and his followers will be surrounded by war and violence, hate and rage, for infinity. Since he first began it, he will be forced to continue in it for eternity.
Satan, known in Heaven as Lucifer, was God’s first-hand man and steadfast angel. His disloyalty to God was agonizing and severe. Therefore, in spite of Satan’s actions, God has damned him to this place full of all that he has refused and given up.