Originally Posted by keg in kc
Maybe even simpler. And less heroic. Track it down and die or turn your back and live.
No, Bell has come to terms that he's gonna die, it's just a matter of when.
His decision then was whether to let into his soul what he needed to face this entity, or wake up retain his soul.
It's all about how one reacts to the knowledge that we're gonna die, and nobody knows how, and nobody knows when.
Moss is conflicted, he faces death to do good when he takes the water back out for the guy who asked for it. But then he gets chased, and when he faces as imminent death as is conceivable with a pit bull jumping jaws open at his face, he solidify's his decision that he's gonna be out for himself.
His wife refuses to be swayed by the potential for death, refuses to play the game.
Chigurh is out for his code, for him since everyone dies eventually, it really doesn't matter when, at least not in comparison to his code. Those who have to die for his code have to die, those who are peripheral can die or can live, doesn't matter to him.
Bell thinks if he upholds the law he can live a meaningful life, but those afoul of the law, it seems to him, are getting more and more evil and arbitrary [a notion his uncle dispells him of]. But he does know, that tackling the purest evil in upholding the law, he's eventually gonna lose more than the life he's gonna lose someday anyway, he's gonna lose his soul, and he's never gonna catch up with his father preparing a fire for him up ahead.