I have been moved this week by understanding Shakespeare’s use of the word “worthy” which was used by his fellow actors about him in recollection.
A "worthy" person is a person of value or worth, of honest, noble character, with other fine qualities and a moral code which includes respect for life and for others. For example, no worthy person deals in lies.
Hamlet says he is tired of life due to:
“ The spurns that patient merit of the unworthy takes”.
"Spurns" means “kicks with the foot”. So the unworthy “kick” the worthy (righteous, patient, valuable, moral) in life if they can. I am sure that Shakespeare noted in his commonplace book "evil" in every form it takes.
We must hold onto this sense of “worthiness”. "Worthiness" is a strong defence against immorality, decadence, conceit, self indulgence and power.
Those without a moral core (which leads to self discipline) sense that their lives do not earn the deepest respect of others and that they lack integral "value". You cannot live for "life's kicks" and be celebrated in years to come.
Today, tragically, we have seen an example of "worth" and lack of worth. A trained, caring South Indian nurse who had been part of a team caring for the Duchess of Cambridge has committed suicide from grief - due to two radio presenters lying to her, pretending to be the Queen, enjoying "kicks" at her expense - and vainly boasting about it, afterwards. Not being a native English speaker, the nurse's ear could not detect that their accents were Australian. At 5am many of us, might be deceived. She put them through to a colleague who divulged medical details about the Duchess.
Perhaps "kicking the worthy" is a pleasure to lightweight people? But, at the end of the day or sooner, when "the game" is up, the worthy have lives and works of "worth and value" to show and the unworthy have only their "kicks". Sometimes "kicks" backfire in this life....
If unrepented, the moral consequences of "kicking" is: God's Justice.