by Robert Walker

In the Darkness Shines a Light
Robert Walker
John 12:35-43

Many of you know the story of the Phantom of the Opera -- about this man who was disfigured terribly -- whose mother even rejected him and would not look at him -- who was a musical and mechanical genius, but went crazy in part because of the rejection he felt from so many people. He spent years underground beneath the Paris Opera House.
This story became a second rate novel, and was adapted to film several times with moderate success. Then in the last 10 years Andrew Lloyd Webber's musical version has achieved extraordinary success in London and on Broadway.
The Phantom as he lives under the Opera House takes to heart a chorus girl -- Christine Daae -- who is singing in the opera chorus, and decides that this girl is going to become the prima donna of the opera through his training. He poses as an angel of music, hides on the other side of her dressing room, and gives her voice lessons which then result in her becoming a wonderful singer.
And about the time when his plot to have her become the prima donna of the opera is to unfold, an old childhood sweetheart of hers, Raul, shows up. This prompts the Phantom to change his course, and actually to take Christine down to his lair beneath the Paris opera house.
While he is down there, in the musical he sings her these words:
Close your eyes, for your eyes can only show the truth
and the truth isn't what you want to see.
In the dark it is easy to pretend
that the truth is what you want to be . . .
Open up your mind;
let your fantasies unwind
In this darkness which you know you cannot fight
The darkness of the music of the night. . . .
Close your eyes and let music set you free
Only then will you belong to me
For I compose the music of the night
So he's singing: "Close your eyes, don't see the truth, and let darkness overwhelm you." Then, interestingly, he proposes that this disregard for the truth will set her free.
Later, for a ...

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