An Anonymous Author in The 15Th Century
Everyman, written by an anonymous author in the 15th century centralizes that “everyman” is in fact, humanity. This author reaches out to his audience in a grave and distinguished tone by using figurative narratives to clarify an ethical and deeper meaning. The author’s feeling of death is to serve as a messenger for God and the treatment of death in Everyman is that everyone must account for his sins. In this human form, were materialistic items taking precedence over faith? Even though humans feel as if others may join in on their expedition in life, that is not the case.
Man’s judgment day is based from his Good Deeds alone. Without proper care of these deeds, one’s strength may not be enough to earn him the right into Heaven. “For before God thou shalt answer and show Thy many bad deeds, and good but a few; How thou hast spent thy life, and in what wise, Before the chief Lord of paradise.” (Every, 107-110) The path in which “everyman” chooses to take, whether it be moral or sinful, will determine his destination. Morality Play Everyman is known as a morality play since it is meant to connect a humble ethical message through religious values to his reader. The play begins with a bold statement from God. “They be so cumbered with worldly riches That needs on them I must do justice…” (Every, 60-61)
How is it that He has given so much for man to look beyond His actualities? While every man is born with the opportunity to pursue Good Deeds, they often get misused and wither away. The truth is, if we let worldly “goods” consume us while down here on earth, we will miss the beauty that is yet to come. God sends out death as His messenger. Man is mortal. His soul can however be immortal with faith in the Lord. Without repenting, man will not have a chance at an endless life with the Lord. The author describes death throughout his play as a divine existence and that all bodily appearances of life are passing. With death being traumatizing, “everyman” tends to disregard its worth, perishing without recognizing or accepting his life in human form.
Death is strict and only has concerns whether “everyman” has evaded the worst sins. Values of Life Throughout history, material prosperity has always been a pleasure of man. Beings physically age and may become tempted by many sinful pleasures. Joy and desire are in the eye of the beholder. Man has a choice whether he will prove his faith through Good Deeds or cower behind what humankind has dealt him. In the play, the character of “everyman” is foolish enough to believe his earthly belongings will entice death to give him more time. Death proclaims, “Everyman, it may not be, by no way. I set not by gold, silver, nor riches, Ne by pope, emperor, king, duke, ne princes;” (Every, 124-126). Confused and helpless, Everyman does all he can to plead for another day. While not given the chance of more earthly time, he has a chance to redeem his soul. Although “everyman” experiences life differently, he gets the opportunity to be morally and ethically correct. Death will eventually happen to man’s worldly self. This does not have to be the end, however.
The author shows how man should try to live for tomorrow through following his faith and not focusing on the worldly materials. God is almighty and does give Everyman and every man a chance to repent and a chance at forgiveness. Doing right while on this earth can and will give us an eternity of happiness if we are doing right by the Lord. Listening to our hearts will in time give our spirits eternal bliss. However, the journey we endure we must make alone. We Have Control Over Our Fate Many times, we feel invincible to what this world has spoiled us with. It has been this way for centuries. “There are diverse philosophical, religious, and cultural perspectives when it comes to defining death, and a lack of understanding and awareness…” (Shemie, 2014). Therefore, man easily enters a life of sin. Everything he has experienced, he never had to go through it alone. He even looks to his goods for guidance and companionship. When he does not convince his material items to take a trip with him, Everyman does not admit to his own guilt. “O false Good, cursed may thou be, Thou traitor to God, that hast deceived me And caught me in thy snare!” (Every, 451-453)
While his “trusted” goods did not agree, that was not his biggest disappointment. Who better to help than that of relatives? To the dismay of Everyman, when he asked his kin folk for aid, he soon learned that not even they could protect him from the harsh truth of his demise. Although he begged and pleaded to not go alone, he finally found the path to his truth. The author’s outcome is that death is a unique voyage in which not one individual may escort each other. Man is powerless against death, just as death is powerless against God. What We do Matters in the End The author of Everyman’s tone is blunt but dejected in relating not only life but linking actions and spirits in a technique that is compassionate. Men constantly meet trials and tribulations throughout life. “And since it is God who created us with freedom and sustains us in being at every moment in our existence, it is also God who provides the ontological ground for us to stand on at the very moment when we perform morally evil actions.” (Lombardo, 2013) He has no intentions of seeking knowledge to give a confession to save his soul.
Everyman succumbs to the material era and is more absorbed and engrossed in the captivations of humanity instead of working towards getting into Heaven. In fact, he is in love with life. He is more than content until death confronts him. “Death’s uncertain timing and potential imminence remind people of life’s ephemerality and the inability to exert ultimate control over life, thereby limiting a person’s ability to enjoy one’s goods fully.” (Rindge, 2015) Consequently, this author speaks of the fact that confessing your sins will enhance the likelihood of getting into Heaven. Regardless of our humanly strength, wisdom, or beauty, in the end, only good deeds will give us an approach into Heaven. While cannot prevent death, we can overcome it through faith and pursuing wisdom through God. He Will Make the Judgment Call
Humanity fears death because “its pervasive emphasis on secrecy and on the unreliability of sacred knowledge as a mediator between the divine and human realms.” (Robbins, 2017) We have now to fix ourselves. We will not receive any aid from the Lord in the afterlife. There will be no chance of redemption or time for compassion once it is our time. While on earth, man should focus on doing right in the Lord. He is who decides where our souls will go. Eternal life in Heaven or Hell. Our Father, our Maker has given His all to give man a chance to succeed in His glory. Whether or not we conduct virtuous deeds and a life complete with honesty and purity shows through our earthly mannerisms. Death is not only inevitable, it has no reason for fear. “And he that hath his account whole and sound, High in heaven he shall be crowned; Unto which place God bring us all thither, That we may live body and soul together.” (Every, 919-922)
Death informs the man of his departure and his journey that he must adhere to, so he can stand before God in judgment. When he finally came upon Good Deeds to embark on his journey with him, the weakness was immense due to the man’s sinful nature. Making ethical decisions rather than being scared over death should be our core involvements about life. Every man has a chance to make it into Heaven. A doctor informs him that if he does not have enough Good Deeds, he will not be able to pass through. With a truthful declaration and accounting for the good he has done; the man has an opportunity. His sorrow, authentic, and repenting revelation, lifted by the man’s Good Deeds, allows the man to enter Heaven. Death of this human body is not the end of us. Death is the messenger of God in Everyman and is the final call before our judgment day. Death is Not the End Why is it that the author sees death in the way he does? Everyman will experience death as it is a guarantee, and only the worldly choices will be of judgment for an eternal life in Heaven or Hell. “
Consequently, unlike human willing, divine willing is eternal and immutable. It has no beginning or end and it does not vary or change.” (Lombardo, 2013) As His messenger in the play, God instructs death to compel every man to justify for his good and evil acts while living on earth. After bowing down to the enticement of sinful desires and wickedness, “everyman” earned forgiveness and was able to go to the eternal resting place. The author illustrates throughout his poem that when the main character’s life ends, everything he has grown to love and cherish abandons him. He is unable to take his worldly treasures with him when he dies. As we tend to abandon our faith in times of distress, we leave behind the material items upon our death. “Everyman” will hail the Lord during his passing and will face judgment day based upon the good he has done versus his sins.
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Everyman, written by an anonymous author in the 15th century centralizes that “everyman” is in fact, humanity. This author reaches out to his audience in a grave and distinguished tone […]