Shakespeare and hypocrisy

I love Shakespeare with a passion. He is perhaps the greatest gift that the gods have offered us to date, with due respect to the holy men and women who have also graced our lives.

He was a very spiritual man and thus had a critical eye re “spirituality” and astutely took we “spiritual sorts” to task for our innate tendency to be hypocritical and insincere.

For example, in King Richard III the King confesses:

And thus I clothe my naked villainy
With old odd ends, stol’n forth of holy writ;
And seem a saint, when most I play the devil.

And then my favorite observation on this note was: With devotions visage and pious action, we do sugar o’er the devil himself. (Hamlet)

And I close with one of my favorite lines from Goethe’s Faust: They call it Reason, using light celestial, just to outdo the beasts in being bestial.


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