Theme Of Forgiveness In King Lear

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Nobody is capable of changing the past. A person’s mistakes and the pain that they inflict on other people are permanent and irreversible. The potential to repair the damage lies by changing the future, not the past. Many characters in William Shakespeare’s play, King Lear, realize their mistakes by suffering, and attempt to correct them through good deeds. Lear’s experience with poverty helps him recognize his misconception of love and accept Cordelia’s forgiveness. Gloucester’s loss of sight makes him see his misjudgement, which he rectifies by obeying a higher being. Edmund feels sorrow for his actions and decides to do good by trying to save Cordelia and Lear’s lives. In the play, the suffering of the characters, Lear, Gloucester,…show more content…
Ironically, Gloucester can only see his error when he cannot see the world around him. When Gloucester has his eyes plucked out and suffers permanent blindness, he laments, “O my follies! Then Edgar was abused./ Kind gods, forgive me that, and prosper him!” (III,vii,92-93). The climax of Gloucester’s misfortunes happens when he loses both eyes. His physical and emotional suffering makes him see the truth that Edmund is the son that never loved him, and the loyal son is the banished Edgar. Since Gloucester cannot express patience to his loving son, he instead relies on divine powers to forgive him and provide prosperity to Edgar. In his troubled mind, Gloucester formed the idea that the only path the gods have given him for atonement is suicide. Gloucester attempts this by throwing himself off a cliff. After believing that he survived the fall, he says, “I do remember now. Henceforth I’ll bear/ Affliction till it do cry out itself,/ “Enough, enough,” and die” (IV,vi,75-77). Gloucester believes that he is alive because of a miracle from the angels. He comes to the conclusion that if they want him to live and persevere, then he must do so and only die when allowed. Gloucester must obey the heavens because only the gods can bring his salvation and Edgar’s well-being. Gloucester’s duty sees results, as he is able to receive Edgar’s love and the fulfillment of his prayers when Edgar emerges victorious against

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