Settlement of New England Puritan Beliefs
Bradford’s history demystifies and perpetuates the mythical status that American culture regards the New England pilgrims. His narrative tackles the heroism of first generation Americans. Still, it continues to expose the reality of the situation where selfishness, greed, and the squabbling amongst the Plymouth settlers characterize human beings. Therefore, it is worth noting that several questions would require an analysis. First, what is the real meaning of Bradford’s classic and the beliefs of the Pilgrim settlers? Secondly, what were the merits and faults of these beliefs Pilgrim settlers in England? Thirdly, how has the world evolved since Puritanism, and what was its significance then and today? Therefore, this study intends to analyze the views of the initial settlers in New England and their importance to both the modern and Bradford’s era.
William Bradford’s narrative designed to pose the pilgrim settlers as people who lived and led by staunch Christian beliefs under an outstanding formal system. Some of these beliefs include God’s justice, the rewards of enduring trials, the dangers of a prosperous society, and the chastising the marriage institution. For instance, the tale of the young man who was punished for profaning the name of God and thus succumbing to the dreadful disease was a way of justice. Consequently, Bradford avers that living in faith, regardless of the suffering, guarantees a reward to the pilgrims for their endurance (Bradford 30). Moreover, the Puritan society addressed their concerns of prosperity, believing that material things would lead believers away from God. Nevertheless, they differed on marital beliefs by accounting that the Bible had no records regarding the institution of marriage; thus, they treated it as a civil issue.
The staunch Christian beliefs and civic practices in the Bradford’s era led people to discuss the merits and faults imposed on the Puritan settlers. Notably, religious and civic practices were meant to build a cohesive society, while the Bradford society partially gained from these arrangements. Although the Christian beliefs were the core virtues that were applied in this era, some civil rights were also practical. However, these people constantly feared a higher God who could punish or bless them accordingly. Thus, it is clear that the pilgrim settlers, for a long time, were prevented from exercising their full potential; hence, experienced spiritual torture and suffering (Bradford 85). Moreover, their lives were characterized by fear, and they could not express their needs for human rights.
Although this narrative may not be the most exciting to read, it covers the real American history. Consequently, it is a crucial piece of literary work that has helped Americans to understand the fascinating journey of the pilgrims that modern books do not cover. In today’s lifestyle, it is impossible to live this kind of life because of globalization and civilization. Today’s society can only relate to the Puritans zeal to survive, but they cannot live a life founded on spiritual beliefs. Moreover, it is clear that in the Bradford’s era people were taken advantage of in many perspectives. Nevertheless, it is important for other researchers to consider analyzing its political significance in America. Outstandingly, it is unacceptable for people to live in a world ruled by spiritual beliefs at the expense of its citizens’ civic rights. Nevertheless, it is difficult to blame this mediocrity fully on the pilgrims because their cultures were based on biblical beliefs rather than democracy.
Bradford, William, and William Bradford. Of Plymouth Plantation. Mineola, N.Y: Dover
Publications, 2012. Web.