The Power Of Faith In Hamlet

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Faith is believing there is light when all one can see is darkness. Throughout Hamlet, Shakespeare uses belief as a guiding force for his characters. They are defined by their faith, or lack thereof, and their beliefs lead many of their actions. In this time period, so many people had horrible lives, faith in an afterlife was the only hope in which to keep living. The concept of an afterlife based on how one behaved in life is a defining characteristic of many religions, and Shakespeare uses this belief as the ultimate decision-maker in many character’s actions.
The first incident of this defining power of religion is in Hamlet’s first soliloquy, “O, that this too too solid flesh would melt,/ Thaw, and resolve itself into dew!/ Or that the Everlasting had not fixed/ His canon ‘gainst self-slaughter! O God! God!” (Shakespeare, 1.2.129-132). The pain that he is experiencing due to his father’s death and his mother’s dalliances can only be resisted by his faith and his belief in better and worse. Hamlet fears a damnation to Hell, and hopes for an easy passage to heaven, yet in a situation that many find hopeless, it is through his faith in God that Hamlet is able to resist the temptations of death. Throughout the play, Shakespeare emphasizes this intense faith that Hamlet possess and how it is a guiding force in many of his choices. Yet lack of faith can be even more telling.
“My words fly up, my thoughts remain below;/ Words without thoughts never to heaven go” (Shakespeare,

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