Persuasive Essay On Forgiveness And Punishment

Decent Essays
Although Sonya offers forgiveness and provides a Christlike example to Raskolnikov, and is the catalyst for his change, she cannot do everything; Raskolnikov only accepts and receives forgiveness after he humbles himself and repents. Even after Sonya offers him forgiveness, Raskolnikov does not believe that her offer has much power. He says, “‘If I am guilty, forgive me (though if I’m guilty, I cannot be forgiven)’” (Dostoyevsky 519). He is reticent to accept forgiveness because he believes that it cannot cover his guilt. He does not want to repent because that would be admitting a sin that he does not believe an be covered by forgiveness. Tired of his guilt and boosted by Sonya’s encouragement, he eventually confesses. Dostoyevsky describes, “And so crushed was he by the hopeless anguish and anxiety of this whole time, and especially of the last few hours, that he simply threw himself into the possibility of this wholesome, new, full sensation. It came to him suddenly in a sort of fit, caught fire in his soul from a single spark, and suddenly, like a flame, engulfed him. Everything softened in him all at once, and the tears flowed. He simply fell to the earth where he stood…” (Dostoyevsky 525). This moment, where he falls to the ground at the crossroads, confessing to no one in particular and yet the whole world, is the first time Raskolnikov humbles himself, physically. This repentance is not full—Raskolnikov still does not accept he is in the wrong until he is
Get Access