Cans’t thou not minister to a mind diseased, Pluck from the memory a rooted sorrow, Raze out the written troubles of the brain, And with some sweet oblivious antidote cleanse the stuffed bosom of that perilous stuff which weighs upon the heart?”

Macbeth was fallen. From a high seat, basking in the King’s honor and praise to a pitiful fraction of what he once was or perhaps, could have been. Reduced to a state of overwhelming guilt and the desire to escape from the consequences of his own ruthless pursuit of power.

He was a respected hero, a valiant leader. Loved by the King and many men. Until one day, the jealous hunger of ambition was awoken in him by a prophesy concerning his future. Three conniving witches, whose passion it was to stir up strife and trouble spoke these fateful words which burned and simmered in Macbeth’s heart.

“All hail, Macbeth! Hail to thee, thane of Glamis! All hail, Macbeth! hail to thee, thane of Cawdor! All hail, Macbeth, that shalt be king hereafter!”

Macbeth was in too deep, he had taken the plunge and now it was too late to swim back to the surface. The deed was done. No turning back, nothing could save him now. Blood was on his hands, “Macbeth doth murder sleep” echoes in his mind. It is now too late to save himself, to get back to where he once was. The only option left to him was to dig himself deeper into the black pit he had made for himself. More lies, more deception and murder. Innocent blood shed to cover his mistakes. Where had he gone wrong? Didn’t the prophesy say that he would be king? It wasn’t supposed to be this way!

The definition of ambition is expressed in this way, “a strong desire to do or achieve something, typically requiring determination and hard work.” What was wrong with Macbeth’s ambition? How did it reduce him to a state of madness and paranoia? Ambition and drive can be a great thing, if you go about it in the right way. Fueling your desires by going against what is right and moral will always change you into something that you are not.

Ambition is a powerful thing. It can drive you to do things that you never thought you could do, but there is a danger to it. Don’t let your desires control you; you need to be wise and discerning in how you use ambition to attain those desires. Look closely at your actions, are you going about this the right way? Become your own magnifying glass, look closely at what is motivating you and why you are doing what you are doing. Will your actions come back to haunt you too? Do not let ambition drive you to doing something you will regret, because everything has its consequences.

“Thriftless ambition, that wilt ravin up Thine own life’s means!”

-Shiphrah

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