This shows his compassion towards God because he is sharing God with everyone else which is something God wants us to do. Another way that Arthur Dimmsdale shows that he cares for God is when he commits a sin he goes through deep repentance. This is an example of how he is a compassionate character because when he knows he does something wrong he feels deeply ashamed by it and repents to make up for what he did. The last way that Dimmsdale is a compassionate character is how even though he feels he can never go to heaven he leads other people on the path to heaven. This compassionate towards God because he tries to help everyone find the right path which brings them to God.
Most readers overlook his admirable qualities and view him as hypocritical and weak. “For, Hester, his spirit lacked the strength that could have borne up, as thine has, beneath a burden like thy scarlet letter” (Hawthorne 188). Chillingworth is telling Hester that Dimmesdale lectures people about the repercussions of sins, however he cannot handle his own. “He is generally called a hypocrite, but though the life he lives is a lie, he is never quite that. Pride and fear combine to keep him from making a clean breast of things, and the best in him conspires with the worst to keep him silent” (Wagenknecht 67).
His carnal craving is looked upon with ignominy. The matter is further convoluted by Hester's marriage, and his unwillingness to mar his reputation among the villagers as the faithful and innocent priest. He is now stranded at a crossroad, not knowing whether to confess or carry on a life of self-punishment. The sin begins to gnaw away at his sanity. As a form of penance he partakes in late night vigils, starvation, and self-mutilation.
Throughout the novel, Hawthorne reveals his character's conflicting emotions and hearts. Hester Prynne masks her shame and attempts to resume her normal life. After being publicly humiliated for committing the transgression of adultery, Hester continues her life with a stronger personality. At first, Hester is ashamed of herself and of the direct proof of her sin, Pearl. However, after coping with her sin and allowing herself time to realize her mistake, she believes the “badge of shame” (Hawthorne 58) will teach her daughter and benefit her.
Notably, Hawthorne develops Dimmesdale’s character through interesting word choice such as “inconceivable” and “agony”. In addition, he forwardly explains the extent to which his secret has controlled Dimmesdale’s feelings. Furthermore, Dimmesdale’s inability to confess his sin to the Puritan community frustrates and, in time, overcomes him. Dimmesdale’s capacity to comfort sinners heightens the parishioners’ adulation for him. Bereft of the capability to see the truth, the townspeople’s holy opinions of Dimmesdale obscure their views.
He does not want the townspeople to think he is wavering and fears they will begin to doubt the so-called ?good? of what he is doing for the town and its God-fearing citizens. Danforth and Dimmesdale contrast in the way of their sins of commission and omission. Although Dimmesdale does not openly admit his sins until the end of the story, they feed on his conscience, causing him to engage in self-torturing practices. He confuses the destruction and weakening of himself for penance for his sin.
The difference between Dimmesdale and Hester is that Dimmesdale was not publicly punished for his crime. This makes him feel extremely guilty. This feeling of guilt was so atrocious that it mentally and physically withers him, as he feels a very strong need to repent and cleanse his soul. Dimmesdale's sin is unnoticed. Hester is unable to hide her wrongdoing.
Dimmesdale is very hypocritical in how he handles the subject of his sin. For example, he says "Be not silent from any mistaken pity or tenderness for him; for, believe me, Hester, though he were to step down from a high place, and stand there beside thee, on thy pedestal of shame, yet better were it so, than to hide a guilty he... ... middle of paper ... ...glimpse of human affection and sympathy, a new life, and a true one, in exchange for the heavy doom which he was now expiating." (pg. 184). Hester's offer to him for a new shot at life could not lift the guilt.
“The sufferer’s conference had been kept in an irritated state, the tendency of which was not to cure by wholesome pain, but to disagree and corrupt his spirited being. Its result on earth, could hardly fail to be insanity and hereafter that eternal alienation from the god and true, of which madnes... ... middle of paper ... ...ingworth’s unwanted manifestation had consumed Dimmesdale’s body, mind, and soul adding to Chillingworth's many infamies. In his last moment he called out to god, but it is unknown if he was answered. As a result Chillingworth was portrayed as a man who behooved the hidden sin that destroyed Dimmesdale, but it did nothing to harm the product of said sin. In this novel, the author demonstrates that sin has the ability to bypass the strictest rules in the form of three major characters: Reverend Dimmesdale, Pearl Prynne, and Roger Chillingworth.
Arthur Dimmesdale did not confess his sins for all the wrong reasons. He didn’t confess for mostly two reasons those being: his belief that man did not judge other men but only God can do that or that he will better serve his people with a sinful heart and not a sinful appearance. Arthur had to deal with all the pressures of a life of sin but also the pressure of his own conscience to confess those sins. The pressures on his body were worse than that of Hester who had confessed her sins. One of the main reasons that Arthur was in poor physical condition was that the wise Doctor Chillingworth had poisoned him, and kept poisoning him until he had confessed of his sins at the end of the book.