Macbeth And Fate Essay, Research Paper
Shakespeare explores Fate and its role in our lives throughout his tragedy, Macbeth. The weird sisters present the whole aspect of destiny with their predictions made through out the play. The reader is left to wonder if the weird sisters predictions are coming true due to some superhuman powers that they posses or if their prophecies serve as temptations to Macbeth and are happening due to the fact that he gave into his greed, pride, and fear.
One is left to question the foretellings of the weird sisters at the end of the play for mainly two reasons. The first reason is because of the major role Macbeth played in the fulfillment of the prophecies. The second had nothing to do with witchcraft but rather with the seemingly logical reason that the predictions came true. While his friend Banquo was mocking the Weird sisters, Macbeth was becoming more and more fascinated with them. This fascination (along with the help, challenges, of his lady) caused Macbeth to take matters of fate into his own hands to ensure the prediction of him becoming king, instead of allowing some higher being to handle it.
With the first of the predictions having come true and the idea of being king implanted in his head Macbeth is overcome with greed for this position. (His first character flaw has been ignited by the weird sisters.) Lady Macbeth, having read about the predictions in Macbeth s letter, has decided that she will do anything to cement her husband becoming king. When she challenges his masculinity she hurts his pride as well and he, to prove himself, agrees to go through with the murder. So, after being manipulated by someone who knows him well enough to hit him where it hurts so bad that the only way for him to recover is with spite, he follows through with their plan to kill Duncan. (His second character flaw is kindled by Lady Macbeth.)
After obtaining the crown Macbeth is constantly fearful for his title and life because he is fully aware that he did not come to be king fairly and does not deserve it. Out of fear, he kills Duncan s guards. Out of fear that his knowledge of the weird sister s predictions will lead to suspicion and possibly in incrimination, Macbeth has Banquo killed. Out of fear of the third prediction, Macbeth attempts to have Fleance killed. Out of fear of the threat Macduff posses, Macbeth pointlessly kills Macduff s family. Out of fear, Macbeth seeks out the weird sisters again. (Macbeth’s third character flaw is sparked by his own guilt.)
The weird sisters act as fate in Macbeth. They do not force Macbeth to respond the way he does however their predictions lead him on a path to self-destruction. Yet with all these forces of fate it is evident that the crimes are no ones fault but Macbeth s. It was his choice to act upon them. Yet, it is rather unusual that Macbeth s reactions lead to the exact ends that the witches predicted every time and even though they knew that the forest would move and that Macduff’s mother oddly enough had a cesarean section. Therein lies the coincidence and chance. One is left to wonder if any of this would have happened with out the prophecies of the weird sisters. Had they not told him of his fate, fate might have been different and Macbeth might have used his free will differently.
In conclusion, the novel Maceth uses the concept of fate as a catalyst to provoke a person s free will. If Macbeth had acted less violently, or had let things take course, chances are that he would have become king on his own but the interference of the weird sisters messed it all up.