Thinking Makes It So

From the second scene in the second act of Hamlet, by William Shakespeare, rewritten a little for clarity, in modern language:

Hamlet: Denmark’s a prison.

Rosencrantz: If it is, then the world’s one, too.

Hamlet: And quite a prison, in which there are many wards, dungeons, and places to be confined, one of which is Denmark.

Roscencrantz: That’s not how we think of it, your highness.

Hamlet: Well, then, for you, it isn’t. For nothing is either good or bad but thinking makes it so. But to me, it’s a prison. 

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2 thoughts on “Thinking Makes It So

  1. This is a brilliant line. And since studying Stoicism I’ve noticed quite a few references to the philosophy in Shakespeare’s works. I have a feeling he was also a fan!

    Thanks for sharing 🙂

    Rohan.

    • Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting on my blog, Rohan. 🙂 I didn’t know there were more references to Stoicism in Shakespeare. I’ll have to look for them.

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