Friday, October 18, 2019

Discuss the treatment of the sacrament of confession in Essay

Discuss the treatment of the sacrament of confession in Boccaccioâ‚ ¬Ã¢â€ž ¢s tale of Ser Ciappelletto, The Summoning of Everyman, and Hesseâ‚ ¬Ã¢â€ž ¢s Narcissus and Goldmund - Essay Example In the spirit of a culture beginning to question the superficiality of dogma, Boccaccio transcends the cynical humor of Ciappelletto’s confession, and the friar’s absolution, reminding us that there is a divine immanence beyond and above the temporal, sometimes absurd practices of the medieval church. After Ciappelletto’s false confession, the narration muses that he may have, at the last, received forgiveness for his many sins, having â€Å"made so complete an act of contrition that perchance God had mercy on him†¦Ã¢â‚¬  (Boccaccio 89). But considering the evidence of his transgressions, eternal punishment is a much more likely fate. In other words, he may have fooled the friar and ultimately received canonization, but true justice is another matter Saint or no, Ciappelletto faces a verdict from which he cannot escape through bluff and deception. It is not given to us to know the final disposition of Ciappelletto’s soul but if eternal damnation is his lot, then it is a â€Å" manifest token of the superabundance of the goodness of God to usward, inasmuch as he regards not our error but the sincerity of our faith, and hearkens unto us when, mistaking one who is at enmity with Him for a friend, we have recourse to him, as to one holy indeed, as our intercessor for His grace† (Boccaccio 90). Confession has enabled Ciappelletto to â€Å"work the system,† to play on notions of holiness, seen through the prism of a worldly church, in order to receive absolution and achieve sainthood. His confession typifies the comparative spiritual impotency of the medieval church, itself a wan reflection of the true spirit it purports to embody. Flouting the sacrament, he has effectively lied his way to sainthood. But Boccaccio assures us that, for all his fabrications, Ciappelletto’s punishment surely must be all the worse in the next world for having â€Å"gotten away with it† in this

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