Arthur Dimmesdale In Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter

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John Calvin once said, “A dog barks when his master is attacked. I would be a coward if I saw that God’s truth is attacked and yet would remain silent.” In other words, if you sin and don't confess, you are a coward. This describes Arthur Dimmesdale. Dimmesdale was afraid his actions would make him hated. He wallowed in his pain privately, unlike Hester and Pearl, who suffered publicly. Through Dimmesdale, Hawthorne taught us the importance of being truthful, especially to yourself. Although he owned up on his deathbed, Dimmesdale was a coward, because he couldn't own up to his actions when he was alive.

Dimmesdale’s actions caused him to be afraid of what his peers and neighbors would think of him. As a religious figure, Dimmesdale would lose all respect. If he went against what he preached, the Puritans would have persecuted him. He would rather be damned than have fingers pointed at him. Dimmesdale committed adultery and self harmed out of guilt. If Chillingsworth told anyone his secret, Dimmesdale would
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If you are not true to yourself, how can you be true to others. You hurt yourself by keeping who you really are inside. You become a coward, because you can’t show who you really are. If Dimmesdale was true to himself, none of this would have happened. He could have avoided the torture from Chillingworth, and the pain he put himself through. By being a coward you cause more pain. By lying to yourself, you are making life harder than it should be.

Dimmesdale was only a coward, because he couldn’t confess. Dimmesdale liked having a high status than a clean conscience. He wore his “A” where he hid his shame, under his clothes. Meanwhile, Hester embraced the public humiliation. If only Dimmesdale knew, telling the truth will always make life easier. In the words of Hawthorne, “Be true, be true, be true.” Only you can decide to own up to your mistakes or wither away, like Arthur

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