of Erik's Character
Years ago, I indulged in my inevitable curiousities and did a bit of research on Tarot cards. The deck I studied in particular had symbols from ancient Greek mythology and paganism. Suddenly I realized one thing... Whether or not I believe Erik actually existed in the flesh, exploring the metaphorical aspects of this infatuating character convinces me that he most definitely existed - and is still alive and well - albeit in a different kind of medium.
In the song "Angel of Music," in the musical by Andrew Lloyd Webber, Erik says to Christine through her dressing room mirror: "Flattering child you shall know me, see why in shadow I hide. Look at your face in the mirror, I am there inside." In the same way that Erik hides deep beneath the Paris Opera House, he hides deep inside the soul, ready to emerge at any moment. He is the creative impulse, the spark of a new idea, and the passion that drives the spirit forever upwards towards new heights. He is the deep inner voice, the intuition, that encourages you to go with that "gut feeling," to follow your heart in spite of what you know and see. He is the individualist who will not cave in to conventional wisdom, even if it means a life of isolation as an outcast. He is the sensitive, creative part of the human being that wishes only to be loved for himself rather than his appearance or money or status.
This spark has a double face, however. Erik keeps himself hidden because of the hostility that conventional wisdom is forever thrusting towards him. Conventional wisdom, conformity, and superstition are not content simply to keep the passionate individualist hidden, quiet, and out of sight. Their desire is to hunt him down and destroy him as though casting out a demon. For this reason, his paranoia is very high. Because he is also sensitive - he cries easily and is prone to mood swings - he can be strangely vulnerable and unpredictable. The hostility and fear he has learned to expect from the conventional-minded has made him defensive, sometimes dangerously so.
In the introduction to my web site, I describe Erik as "Part Orpheus, Part Hermes, Part Hades." He is also spiced with a few others as well, which I will hopefully be able to elaborate on soon. What can I say? He's widely accomplished.
Is Erik nothing more than a source of madness, or is he a brilliant source of creativity? Take a journey through the many faces of Erik and judge for yourself.
Furthermore, I realized after the fact that I quote one of the more obscure movies a lot in this section. It just happened to have words for me when I could not find them. Additionally, the Phantom's eloquence and poetic mannerisms on this video, along with my studies on a deck of Tarot cards with a Greek mythology theme, helped inspire this section of my site in the first place. I will brush up and show other versions in the future, time permitting.