[Image: Ophelia by John Everett Millais]

In the play Hamlet, Ophelia climbs out on a branch overhanging a river: the branch breaks, she falls and drowns. What would you reply if someone asked, ‘Did Ophelia die because Shakespeare for poetic reasons, wanted her to die at that moment - or because the branch broke?’ I think that one would have to say ‘For both reasons.’ Every event in the play happens as a result of other events in the play, but also every event happens because the poet wants it to happen. All the events in the play are Shakespearean events; similarly, all events in the real world are providential events… ‘Providence’ and natural causation are not alternatives; both determine every event. Both are one.
C.S. Lewis - Miracles

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