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treatment of nihilism in both these characters, it can be seen that Edmund and Satan truly did not care about the values of their own existence.Another similarity in the treatment of nihilism in Edmund and Satan is that neither of the characters care about the emotions, feelings or sensations of others. Nihilists only care about the end results of their objectives, which Edmund and Satan were successful in accomplishing. In theplay Edmund states “Sir, I thought it fit To send the old and miserable King To some retention and appointed guard; …….. At this time We sweat and bleed: the friend hath lost his friend; And the best quarrels, in the heat, are curs'd By those that feel their sharpness. The question of Cordelia and her father Requires a fitter place”. In this quote Edmund has shown that he has obtained what he wanted from the start. No matter what obstacle he came across, his only goal was to take over the kingdom. Nihilism in this context also means the belief that a society's political and social institutions are so bad that they should be destroyed. In this case, Edmund shows this by overthrowing the previous king and his kingdom. Not caring about the feelings of others, Edmund had become an individual who has bought disaster to his society. This type of treatment of nihilism in Edmund dictates that he denied moral beliefs and only caused pain to others. In comparison to Edmund, Satan also had an end goal that he wanted to complete which was to make Adam and Eve eat the apple from the forbidden tree. Satan tells Eve to eat the fruit “Here grows the Cure of all, this Fruit Divine, Fair to the Eye, inviting to the Taste, Of vertue to make wise: what hinders then To reach, and feed at once both Bodie and Mind? So saying, her rash hand in evil hour Forth reaching to the Fruit, she pluck'd, she eat: Earth felt the wound, and Nature from her seat Sighing through all her Works gave signs of woe, That all was lost”. Satan
had obtained what he wanted from the start. Milton shows us in this scene that Satan was able to complete and see the end result of his goal. He did not care what would happen to Adam or Eve, nor did he care about the consequence he would soon face. Satan was happy enough to accomplish goals only to show that his values and beliefs are not moral. This treatment of nihilism in Satan shows that he rejected moral values and only caused pain and suffering to humanity. The similarity of caring only about the end result matters in the treatment of nihilism because it shows that Edmund and Satan did not care about the feelings and emotions of others. Both characters did not care if they were following any ethical principles or values. They each completed their goals which contained no values. This comes back to the point that doing evil only makes the life of an individual meaningless. The experiences they faced from their end goals only mattered to them because it connects with the definition of nihilism that values are notimportant, which shows that neither character had seen their true existence of living.