“Be true! Be true! Be true! Show freely to the world, if not your worst, yet some trait whereby the worst may be inferred!” -Hester Prynne
In the book, both Dimmesdale and Hester have a sin to ashamed of. Hester decides (or is forced) to wear the Scarlet letter and reveal her sin to the public, while Dimmesdale keeps his sin bottled up in his heart. Over time, Hester learns to accept her letter, and soon becomes a stronger woman who is respected and liked by the townspeople. By hiding his secret, the sin has a devastating effect on Dimmesdale’s mind and body, which ultimately leads to death.
When Hester says, “Be true! Be true! Be true!”, she advocates the act of releasing your sins to the world. From her personal experience, it makes a person stronger and more accepted by the people.
When you accept yourself, as well as the sins you have committed, you are able to release those hindering thoughts and continue onward toward a stronger character with a greater sense of integrity. If you do not accept your sins, and are not willing to share them with anyone, they will wreak havoc with your soul and create severe consequences.
After reading the last few chapters of The Scarlet Letter, I found that the idea of love and hate stemming from the same origins very interesting. Dimmesdale and Roger had such an intimate relationship, which formed the basis for the growth of love or hate.
I have recently begun to read the book, Beyond Good and Evil, by Friedrich Nietzsche. This book concerns the true nature of humans, why we love and hate, and why it is important to question everything. In this book, he states that nothing can be created from its opposite, such as hate and love, truth and error, and lust from sagacity.
I do not know which I want to believe in, for truth only lies in the subjectivity of an individual. Although, I would like to know what everyone thinks of this. (Borrowing Meghan’s method)
Is love and hate the same? Where are their origins?
P.S: Props to Descartes for that nice title there. 😀
After my experience with my essay and the repercussions that followed from both classmates and my family, I cannot truly say that I am just a cold, analytical machine that looks down upon everyone and everything. I am a human, and because I am, part of me is ruled by emotions. I want to be your friend, your classmate, etc, not just a robot with a cold heart. The problem is, my robotic personality and my social personality cannot exist at equilibrium. One always has to top the other, for they simply cannot coexist with each other.
One part of me wishes to be a pure, mechanical, thinking machine, whilst another personality aids my acceptance in society. Rather than just study people, I am also an emotional catalyst. I want to laugh, I want to socialize, I want to be a part of a larger group who may accept me. However, this contradicts my first personality and introduces a lot of unnecessary subjective emotions.
My theory is this: Everyone has a true, deep personality of their own, hidden away by unseen forces, and a social personality that allows them to participate within society and grants them passage in this world of ours.
I am interested in what you all think of this. Is is true? Untrue? Crazy? I would like to hear your comments.
Interesting, isn’t it? Now you know my true identity. This charlatan sat beside you, laughed with you, and feigned interest in whatever it was that you were busying yourself with. This quiet, somewhat goofy character misled you, and made you think he was predictable. If you were not paying attention in class today, the chances that you glimpsed my true weakness are slim. I believe that it was fairly obvious, and given the right circumstances, anyone could have guessed it.
I will leave you to dwell on this, and I will be interested to see what will happen in the days to come.
Today was especially interesting for me, and I got to observe new kinds of behavior toward my letter!
For reasons I do not fully understand, and may never will, the people who I commonly socialize with seemed angry toward my letter. They stared as normal toward my letter, but their gazes were tinted with images of hellfire. They ask condescendingly, “Why are you still wearing that?” Their eyes dilate and squint. Their nostrils widen. They look at me as if I were condemned to torture them with the enigma that is my letter.
Such behavior, such emotional attachment to some abstract idea utterly mystifies me.
Right above this post, there should be an “About” page.
If you click on it, you have access to all of the student blogs and their addresses that I have compiled so far.
I know that Hester Prynne decorates and embroiders her letter, turning it into a fashion statement rather than a symbol of sin.
I am torn. Do I decorate my letter further, or do I leave it be? I have already added a few quotes on the letter, but I fear that more decoration would take away from its purpose. Why should I decorate my letter and make it reflect more of who I am? I am not trying to cover it up, in fact, I am trying to do the opposite to create a more enlightening experience. Perhaps just a structural/weight augmentation and color contrast will do the trick…
Today, I had a startling revelation. I can no longer feel the physical weight (although it is of light material) of the letter upon my chest. I no longer feel the embarrassment of hanging a bright red letter around my neck, and I feel as if the letter is not there (sans its hindering movements). It has coalesced into my chest, no longer seen by my eyes, yet plainly visible to all others.
This letter, now a physical part of me, has been creating a cumulative nervousness within me. When it reminds me of my sin, my stomach becomes sick and I feel deeply nauseated. It is as if the letter has taken on a personality of its own. This…parasite, this dark sycophant clings to me, its reluctant host, attached by deep connection rooted in my soul. It feeds on the attention given to it, and in return, provides me with the feeling of nausea and embarrassment. So far, I have slowly developed a feeling of contempt toward those who stare at the letter. I truly fear that this may lead to a greater hatred of humanity than I already possess.
I cannot wait to try out a new self-suggestion next week. Instead of knowing that the people are staring at my letter, I will convince myself that they are looking into my “soul”. But…aren’t they already doing that, symbolically speaking? I must test this to see if it offers any new feelings.
Idiot? Incompetent? Irregular? What about Intimacy?
What about it? I have explained the possibility of symbolism, as well as the unimportance of the letter I chose, yet they continue to guess the meaning of the “I” on my chest. Here is another “I” word to add to your repertoires: Imbecile.
Look at me! Look at me in the eyes! No, my eyes are not on my chest! Listen to me and heed what I say! You will soon lose interest, but my paranoia will continue. After you have asked your questions, you will promptly forget my letter, and will continue on with your life. Though our eyes may meet in the hall, I will think that you are not looking at me, but my letter. Who cares about this person? No one. All that is cared for and seen by the masses are the sins, not the empty shell that bears the letter.
I can lie and tell people anything, so long as it includes my letter, and they will believe it as truth! This is truly liberating! I feel as if I hold supreme command over some part of their brains. They do not know the truth, nor will they ever! I am their king, ruler of their minds. I am always watching, thinking, and expecting your criticisms. I wait and hope for the day that you truly achieve a truthful perception of the world around you. Oh, how I wish that everyone were to wear these letters and throw judgmental glances to and fro! What a world it would be if everyone is both pessimistic and truly accepting!
I do not believe that the letter hanging from my neck could be any more scarlet than my face as I walked into school this morning. As soon as I reveal my letter, a distant friend walks by and says, “What’s your sin?” I stalled until I thought of an answer, and I said, “uh…It’s for English Class.” My friend seemed to accept this, for it looked as if they had already experienced this situation. No sooner do I take three steps, and I meet the hall monitor, who asks me a question in the same realm as the first. I reply the same as before, and continue on my way. Throughout the day, more and more people continued to stare at my chest and put their faces inches within my personal comfort zone, scrutinizing the text upon my letter.
What fools they are! I have belabored my story to them, and yet, they still persist without personal regard! I wish to say, “Remove yourself from my space, cretins! Go wallow in your own sorrows and do not bother me, for there are many more things to do than stand around and have you constantly question me about the most insignificant details of my letter. Begone, for I do not wish to entertain you, miserable animals!”