Religion In Augustine And Hamlet

Decent Essays

Professor Vanden Houten
FYS 152
30 October 2017
Religion in Augustine and Hamlet Religion has always been a major factor of influence for those who stand by its principles. It is a force that drives man unlike no other because it is powered by the strength of faith. Both Augustine’s autobiography Confessions written in 397 AD and Shakespeare’s tragedy Hamlet written almost 1200 years later employ the theme of religion as a building block. Augustine uses religion as a safety net for his younger self, then transforms it into a way of life as he gets older. Therefore, Augustine could undoubtedly be labeled as an idealist considering he submerges his entire life with religion. For Hamlet, faith in God isn’t necessarily what drives him, rather, it is the faith in his father’s spirit (or angel) that influences Hamlet to continue with the story. Hamlet isn’t so clearly labeled as an idealist, but it is evident that he does not lack the desire to carry out an act on grounds of morality. Religion, specifically Christianity, is an ideal that both Augustine and the character of Hamlet use to validate their decisions and develop their character, all in an attempt to find the ultimate truth. It was not until after Augustine graduated college that his perception and understanding of religion became positively evident. Before that, it was very vague and shallow. Augustine indulged in sin the most during his teenage years, claiming that he “ran wild.” His morality rapidly

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