Hamlet’s Life and Death
Death and life are the most debated aspects of human life. Death for instance, is a part of human life but still remains a mystery that no one has had experience to tell. The desire to life and fear of death are said to shape the lives of people. The play Hamlet, written by Shakespeare has used the life and death theme to determine the actions of the people. Hamlet contemplates the spiritual way of the life after death with many soliloquies. Appearance of the contrived old king hamlet’s spirit and death of most of the characters displays death in a simple way. Although this is the case, death and life have some deeper meaning and a purpose to which death is made inevitable in this play. The main view of death is seen through hamlets mind throughout the play which is followed closely by the audience. Through the theme of death, hamlet grows a lot of interest on the cessation of life. The desire to find the truth behind death, dying and living to other dimension clouds hamlets mind. This obsession in search of the truth provides a question on what are the repercussions when a person will depart the living and die to be with the creator. The passion of hamlet towards death and life raise awareness to any reader regarding the worries when a person dies. (Shakespeare, 1598).
Hamlet has a creepy but serious obsession with death in physical and the effects it causes on the dead. When hamlet sees the skull of Yorick, he witnesses the eventual shift between life and death; the person who was once a lead politician, has been reduced to just a skull by death. He says “Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him, Horatio; a fellow of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy; he hath borne me on his back a thousand times; and now, how abhorred in my imagination it is! My gorge rises at it. Here hung those lips that I have kissed I know not how oft. Where be your gibes now? Your gambols? Your songs? Your flashes of merriment, that were wont to set the table on a roar?”. He is fascinated by the realization that death is the leveler. It is unbearable and an equalizer of all people. He fears that no matter what one does in life, good or bad, it becomes futile at the end (Desmet and Christy, 36).
Hamlet again is caught in between the natural cycle between life and death. He realizes that the dead corpses are buried in the soil, they disintegrate in the soil and it is in this soil that human beings plant crops for food to give life. He laments, “A man may fish with the worm that hath eat of a/ king, and cat of the fish that hath fed of that worm”. However, it is with Hamlets final inner resolution, that he brings the aspect of Death into a new light, and finds peace within himself. What fascinates him most is that death and life are intertwined into each other. One leads to the other and the cycle keeps on repeating itself. Hamlet knows that death is inevitable and later he accepts it and acknowledges that it is useless to live in fright and worry trying to avoid it. Hamlets refers to the ‘fall of sparrow’ from Mathew 10.29 and says, “are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? And one of them shall not fall on the ground without your father”. This means that its God who supervises and controls the life and death of all creatures including the sparrows. In reference to this it is clear that hamlet agrees that it is destiny that controls both life and death, and even if he dies now or later it’s of no use worrying because what has to happen must happen (O’Neill and William, 121)
This play presents the theme of life and death as greedy and criminality ways to satisfy the desire to be prominent in the community. This is based on the real experience of hamlet in his family. He discovered that Claudius, his uncle, murdered his brother and then went ahead and married his widow. Claudius later took the throne and declared himself the ruler of the kingdom. Here we see hamlet as a protagonist while Claudius becomes his main antagonist who terrorizes his family in order to have power and authority. Hamlet is involved in a personal soliloquy, “to be or not to be.” He considers taking his own life. He is depressed about his father’s death but he is hesitant of taking his life since he is worried about the consequences of going to hell, “for in that sleep of death what dreams may come”. Hamlets lust for power made him kill all people who inflicted sufferings to his family. Nonetheless, he put his life in line so as to give a legendary message to other kingdoms as an exchange for the unjust sufferings from his own members of family in order to have peace throughout the kingdom.
The theme of life and death shows a message concerning the value of sacrifice. The sacrifice comes up when one chooses to revenge against an intolerable act of killing someone. Hamlet’s theme about death and life shows a sacrificial arrangement that offered a deed to assist the general public. He believes that taking one’s life is the best way to create a legacy for any individual desiring to be a legend in any community. Taking one’s life provides a great deal of advantages regarding the welfare and security of any society. The theme of life and death is very important because it represents an anecdotal notion that the author makes. This notion provides a base on which the future generation will see the sacrifices that Hamlet made. When hamlet later succumbs to his most feared ordeal-death- we see that the welfare of our society is more peaceful and productive when it is governed by the people who deserve to, and concerned with the future generation (Peragine and Juliana, 135)
Finally, it is evident that the theme of life and death promotes a lot of values for learning. The author of this play makes the reader understand that family relationships are important. Revenge is a way of trying to fulfill the lust for power and it comes after your close family member are executed intentionally in the greed of attaining power. As a victim, hamlet realizes that death is not only horrible but also an annoying situation since it values the importance of revenge over those who destroys the family. According to this play, being heartless in order to preserve and protect the welfare of the society shows a sacrifice that ensures that the future generations will be led by good and optimistic leaders. Although Shakespeare’s play does not fully provide enough answers to some important questions that surrounds life and death, it provides a very stimulating discussion and a different view on life and death and their implications.