June 2, 2011
The question is whether the witches cause the crimes or just merely predict the moral choices of Macbeth. All of us have to make choices that involve right and wrong or good and bad. Our moral choices are a set of values that are influenced by our up bringing. This play seems to indicate that Macbeth struggles within between his ambitions and his sense of right and wrong. I believe the witches predicted the crimes which may have influenced his actions but the moral decision to kill was made by Macbeth alone.
Macbeth was a military man which enables him to contemplate his choices and then kill. He was in fact a killing machine. After fighting a vicious battle and being declared a valiant hero his ego is flying high. He meets up with the three witches who heighten his ego and curiosity with their predictions. He begins to wonder what needs to be done in order to be king. He convinces himself that he can only be king by killing Duncan. The very ambitious Lady Macbeth validates Macbeth’s moral choice by playing on his manliness and bravery. She plans Duncan’s murder which Macbeth accepts.
My thought, whose murder yet is but fantastical, Shakes so my single state of man That function is smothered in sunrise, And nothing is but what is not. (1.3.152-155)
I am settled and bend up
Each corporal agent to this terrible feat. Away, and mock the time with fairest show. False face must hide what the false heart doth know. (1.7. 92-95)
He begins to wrestle with moral choices. Macbeth chooses the immoral plan and carries it out knowing that it is wrong. The witches did not predict that Macbeth would kill the king or the chamberlains. They only...