Morality Vs. Immorality Essay, Research Paper
Every person on this planet is unique in some way. We all have ways to identify ourselves from the masses. For some people it s a talent that they possess, for others they way they dress. Some people define themselves by wealth and power whereas others tend to use their morals and or religious beliefs. In A Man For All Seasons (Robert Frost) Sir Tomas More is just such a person. Tomas More is the chancellor for King Henry VIII and is a very religious man. Early in the play it becomes clear that the play will revolve around More and his morals. We learn the king Henry VIII plans to divorce his brother s widow Queen Catherine because she will not bear him a son. Things become complicated when Henry finds that the pope will not grant him a divorce. Henry decides that he will divorce the church and start his own, the Church of England where he can be the supreme leader, a god on earth of sorts.
Sir Tomas More gets up at the crack of dawn every morning and prays. He goes to church on a regular basis and he sometimes even skips whole days so he can just pray. He is loyal to the Catholic Church almost fanatically. Yet More is not just another bible thumping idiot who preaches to everyone. Not only is he the chancellor to the king but also a well known lawyer, author, and nobleman. He is obviously a very intelligent man, but then why does he compromise the safety of his family by not swearing his allegiance to the king and recognizing him as the supreme power in the Church of England. His morals and ethics dictate that he must stay true to the Catholic Church. It is his belief that there can only be one god, one supreme ruler and that is the Catholic god.
But really how moral is this? What he is basically doing is putting his life and his family s life in danger. He is going directly against the will of he king. Not very many people went against the will of the king and got away with it. And it s not just his life on the line but his social standing and economic situation as well. I admire his resolve but were I him I would think a little harder on it because as the stakes get higher it becomes clear that More will have to cling to his morals at the cost of his job and his relationship with his family. He ends up resigning from his post as chancellor. As a result his wife, Alice, becomes increasingly irritable due to the fact that as a result of More clinging to his morals she has to live in a smaller, less than gargantuan house and also that they don t have any maids or butlers to wait on their every whim. They just have less money and power and that really bothers her. More so than More who is the one who held the position. Even his daughter, Meg, becomes cross with him. However this seems to stem from the fact that she just can t understand why he is making the choices that he is. I can sympathize with not understanding his thought process here. It looks like he is destroying his golden opportunity at success for nothing at all. Not just throwing success away but endangering them as well. This is a reasonable anger, however, Alice s anger stems for greed and just looks selfish to me. Yes they don t have a lot of money. Yes they aren t as powerful. Yes they don t have maids or a big house. But they do have three meals a day and they do have each other and they do have a house to live in. These are the things you need in life and they have them. More is content and his whole family should be too.
More was true to his ethics to the very end. That is something that I don t think a lot of people can do these days. People are looking so hard to be successful in our era that often times I see people who change their beliefs just so they can fit in or gain in some way. If you were to ask someone if they would ever sell out they would probably say no; this includes me but when you think about being put to death for something you believe in then the whole situation changes a lot. I don t think I believe in anything enough to warrant me dying for it. So in that aspect, I admire Sir Tomas More. But in the process of sticking to his morals he really hurt his family. For that I do not admire him. Were Sir Tomas Mores actions moral and ethical at all times? That is a question that I can really only answer for myself. Everyone has different ideas of how things should be done based on their own moral code. I feel mixed on the issue but the guy sitting to my left may think that what he did was right on in all aspects while the guy on my right might think that what he did was totally wrong. It is so important to follow you heart and to do what you think is right. If you don t then people will see that and push you around. You have to be independent and think for yourself. The rewards for this are immense. But you won t know how so until you experience them for yourself Obviously Tomas More agreed with on this subject. But in my book, family comes first so his actions were more immoral than moral.