The Hidden Sin and The Revealed Sin As humans, we live in the that are brimming with sins and evil desire. As the creator of all the creatures, God, sent his only son to save the people from the control of devil. The only thing we have to do is to acknowledge our mistake. Bible teach us that we should tell the truth to God and your neighbors, and God will forgive you. But people are worse, they not only hide the sin and their evil behaviors but also try to deny it.
In Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter, Reverend Arthur Dimmesdale commits a mortal sin by having an affair with a married woman, Hester Prynne. As a man of the cloth in Puritan society, Dimmesdale is expected to be the embodiment of the town’s values. He becomes captive to a self-imposed guilt that manifests from affair and his fear that he won’t meet the town’s high expectations of him. In an attempt to mitigate this guilt, Dimmesdale acts “piously” and accepts Chillingworth’s torture, causing him to suffer privately, unlike Hester who repented in the eyes of the townspeople. When Dimmesdale finally reveals his sin to the townspeople, he is able to free himself from his guilt.
Guilt Obsession Within the novel The Scarlet Letter, written by Nathanial Hawthorne Reverend Dimmesdale drastically develops throughout the novel, from being a symbol of Puritan religion to displeasing the population of the Puritan expectations through his actions. His appearance as well as his privilege and prominence within the community alters radically. He begins the novel as the town reverend, and later, the shame of Hester accepting the entirety of the blame and the fact that he escaped with no punishment or shame from the town ultimately consumed him. Throughout the novel, it was revealed that he had a red mark on his chest in correlation to the “A” that was displayed on Hester’s chest.
In this book, Hawthorne details an elaborate story showing the consequences of confessing sins in contrast to concealing it. A sin weighing down on you and destroying you from the inside out is a moral consequence and, the only remedy is confessing the sin. This notion can be seen in the difference between Hester and Dimmesdale with how they handled the scarlet letter and the effects of that. Hester had worn her scarlet letter out for the public to see from the very beginning. She the subject of a lot of the town’s scrutiny.
One moral consequence of sin is guilt. In Dimmesdale's case his sin was a great one. He had committed adultery with a married women, Hester. Hester received her punishment, but Dimmesdale goes unpunished, causing him to be ridden with guilt. Guilt was the culprit of all of Dimmesdale’s suffering.
This again shows that he is not afraid to be with Hester through this ordeal. Dimmesdale is also shown in the book to be a generally a nice person. An example of this is is throughout the book, he tries to get more involved in Pearl’s Life as he sees that they are precious moments with his daughter. Another example is when Dimmesdale says to everyone publically he has committed the sin of adultery. Instead of reporting him to the authorities and having him punished, they congratulate him for being holy as he’s always been.
Nathaniel Hawthorne uses a multitude of imagery and symbolism to serve as metaphors for different themes in his novel The Scarlet Letter. The theme sin versus guilt, appears often throughout the novel. It is often accompanied by the symbol of the scarlet letter, serving as a constant reminder of the guilt each of the main characters carry, as a result of the sins they have committed.
Dimmesdale attempts to inform his congregation of his terrible sin: “He had told his hearers that he was altogether vile, a viler companion of the vilest, the worst of sinners, an abomination, a thing of unimaginable iniquity... They [his congregation] heard it all, and did but reverence him the more” (114). Dimmesdale truly reveals the fact of his unholiness, but fails to reference any details to his congregation. They paint him in an even holier light, and understand that only a true saint like Dimmesdale can call himself unholy in this way. However, Dimmesdale’s conscience is wrecked, because he is unable to reveal his sin, despite his multiple public attempts, and his anguish lingers.
When we keep secrets we also keep guilt and guilt will destroy us from the inside. In the book of scarlet letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne and how one woman who committed adultery with a character named dimmesdale who is the town revered. Dimmesdale kept secrets to maintaining his reputation but actions the guilt eats him from the inside. Dimmesdale the town revered for the puritan religion. He commits adultery with Hester and has a child, but instead of facing his sin he keeps inside for no one to know.
Effect of Sin and the Chance of Redemption Sin is a powerful action that has an everlasting consequence of guilt. Once done, the person wants to forget about his felonious actions; however, hopefully a person’s conscience is a constant, nagging reminder. In order to be free of the constant pain, redemption is pursued for even the person who sinned in public or private. In The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne proves that the truth of sin eventually need to be confronted in order for a person to stop suffering.
Dimmesdale is full of guilt, because he is a leader of the community and was true to his religion, yet he still committed the substantial sin. Not only did he commit the sin, but he continues to keep it hidden from his community. Dimmesdale is supposed to be true to the work that he does, and guilt is what he should feel for hiding who he truly is. “Whom would they discern there, with the red eastern light upon his brow? Whom,
According to Hawthorne, the consequence of sin is mental deterioration as represented by Reverend Dimmesdale. Dimmesdale is a priest that has committed a vile crime, although only a scanty amount of people know about it. Dimmesdale has not publically announced his sin, which in turn worsens his mental health due to guilt. Dimmesdale stood in front of the town when his past lover, Hester, was being publically humiliated and never uttered a word, only placed “his hand upon his heart” (59). The consequence of not admitting his immoral sin was ultimate guilt.
In Dimmesdale not confessing and facing a punishment in the eyes of the church as well as the townspeople, causing him to take to his own means, while Hester is able to face a punishment. Dimmesdale does what he believes is right for his punishment by doing acts that damaged his mind and body. Dimmesdale, in creating his own punishment, holds vigils that last all night, fasted to the point that he barely ate anything at all, beat himself, and lost the will to live. Dimmesdale's sin stays with him throughout the book, and the readers see his mind and body deteriorate through his mysterious sickness, while the readers see Hester become a closed off outcast trying to repent. The townspeople in the book see DImmesdale's sickness, and how devoted he is to his faith and begin to believe that he is holy, and an angel sent to sent to save them, while Hester has repented and become able, as well as an
The Scarlet Letter Essay Roger Chillingworth and Arthur Dimmesdale were two of the main sinners in The Scarlet Letter. Both characters kept their sins secrete throughout the story. These sins included adultery, revenge, and even murder. Out of the two sinners, Chillingworth was the worst, because he never felt guilt for the terrible things he was doing. Dimmesdale spent his entire life in guilt and remorse for the sins he had committed (“Who”).
Hawthorne described three things in The Scarlet Letter. Sin, guilt, and redemption. Hawthorne uses people to symbolize them. Hester Prynne was one. Hawthorne allows the reader to get a better understanding by using biblical references.