Buddhism In Macbeth

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The religion of Buddhism was founded on the principle that to achieve enlightenment, one should be altruistic and develop an eclectic perspective. The notion that desire is the origin of all evil is an underlying principle of Buddhism, and an element which causes the protagonist in the Shakespearean play of Macbeth to transgress the moral laws which, anteceding the Weird prophecy, he embraced and thought righteous, such as those relating to the Chain of Being. In the tragedy Macbeth, the decisions of the main character are strongly influenced by other parties, ultimately leading to his downfall. Macbeth’s failure to formulate his own opinions demonstrates his lack of confidence and self-understanding which contradicts the core facet of Buddhism.…show more content…
A strong connection between one’s mental state and their soul is essential for their development. Practicing meditation is the act that unifies the body with the soul, and as a result self confidence is achieved (Grubin). Throughout Macbeth’s development as a main character, he failed to thoroughly understand himself, resulting him to be easily influenced by his wife. This was a main factor in Macbeth’s downfall, as he never truly understood his goals. His uncertainty was exhibited through thoughts prior to his assassination of the the King, “ Bloody instructions being taught, return to plague th’ inventor.”( 1,7,9-10) and “ This Duncan hath borne his faculties so meek” ( 1,7, 16-17). These two examples manifest, Macbeth’s contemplation, which signify his failure to truly understand his reason. Correspondingly, this caused Macbeth to be in a state of disorientation which ultimately made him vulnerable towards key figures in his life. The one character that had the strongest influence on Macbeth was his benevolent wife. Lady Macbeth believed that the best for her husband was being at the top of the chain of order. To wit, having a significant amount of power would find him true happiness, and when she saw that Macbeth was hesitant towards this; she took the initiative. Lady Macbeth questions Macbeth’s manhood numerous times during moments of remorse,…show more content…
Through the eyes of Buddhism, desire is generally seen as the enemy of spiritual growth. Many Buddhists believe that "Instead of seeing desire and pleasure as something to be avoided, one must recognize the powerful energy aroused by desire as an indispensable resource of spiritual path"(Loon). Macbeth's perspective throughout the tragic play was that satisfaction was imminent following every immoral act. His paranoia was a prime factor in his downfall and it acted as a driving force to satisfy his goals. Towards the beginning of the play, the Weird sisters prophesied and illustrated Macbeth's success. These witches were a representation of evil among the Scottish society and are what caused Macbeth to fulfill his desires. The play's literal representation of evil was the embodiment of the weird sisters, and the implicit representation was the decisions and acts committed by Macbeth. A quote that best describes the relationship among desire and Macbeth is the following "fantasies both are about to turn into stark reality, each leading the other into the temptation of their desires, inflicting what will prove to be for both the mortal wound of getting what they want."(figure it out). The aforementioned quotation describes how temptations of desires were what caused a wound

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