“To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player,
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
The ambition, the ruthlessness, the bullying I have seen it all. Lady Macbeth is in all of us. Her ambition hides the emptiness she feels and we cope with those times by creating the Lady Macbeth Character. We deny it but it is there
“Glamis thou art, and Cawdor, thou shalt be
What thou art promis'd. Yet do I fear thy nature,
It is too full o' th' milk of human kindness
To catch the nearest way. “
We rationalise , we hide from ourselves, we say what is done is done and yet we know otherwise.......
“My lord, why do you keep alone,
Of sorriest fancies your companions making,
Using those thoughts which should indeed have died
With them they think on? Things without all remedy
Should be without regard: what's done, is done.”
Ambition, allows us to drive ourselves on, as witchfinders and then we fight with monsters in the abyss. The problem is that the monsters fight back and the abyss looks into is. The realisation that we are all broken, all imperfect frightens us. If we turn into Crusaders fearing and hunting the devil within then we hide from our inner fears.
“Stars, hide your fires; Let not light see my black and deep desires.”
You can see this in the monstrous ego of Trump. You can see it in Farage and I wonder if in five years time we will see the destruction of Farage, Gove and Johnson , their reputation destroyed by the unveiling of the Brexit process as powerfully as Iraq destroyed Tony Blair. The jury is out let us see the unforeseen black swans landing in the years to come.
As for myself I cant get the words of T. S Eliot s third verse of the Journey of the Magi out of my mind ..perhaps its merely that its early January but I dont know......
“We returned to our places, these Kingdoms,
But no longer at ease here, in the old dispensation,
With an alien people clutching their gods”
Let me conclude with another two quotes.
Oh, it is easy for the one who stands outside the prison-wall of pain to exhort and teach the one who suffers”
Aeschylus, from Prometheus Bound
“But the worst enemy you can meet will always be yourself; you lie in wait for yourself in caverns and forests. Lonely one, you are going the way to yourself! And your way goes past yourself, and past your seven devils! You will be a heretic to yourself and witch and soothsayer and fool and doubter and unholy one and villain. You must be ready to burn yourself in your own flame: how could you become new, if you had not first become ashes?”
Friedrich Nietzsche, Thus Spoke Zarathustra
Macbeth tells us of the human condition, it describes the worst we can become and it is important, frightening and illuminating in what it tells of of others and of ourselves. Particularly it tells of the political world and the menagerie of individuals we meet there. There are monsters out there......Shakespeare knew this