Greek Myth & Homer Iliad

Homer's Iliad embraces both positive and negative attributes associated with the gods of Greek myth. It dealt with the fall of Troy from a variety of perspectives. The Bronze Age was coming to an end and Iron Age emerged when the Troy was fallen. The result was as follows: the mortal men and women were left to live their own lives on the earth with happiness and grief, and the warriors of Ashen Spear were fated to be left for the Underworld. There were already a lot of sufferings in that era because there was always a war season in those days, people were dying, there were abductions and people were always carping and fighting for their rights, nobody was having mercy on anyone. Homer was influenced with all this and wanted to depict his ideas and perceptions into his marvellous writings. The bloodshed, brutality and slavery were almost everywhere but were also the indication into the righteous minds. They had no leniency and were always vindictive in their deeds. They were illogical and so were ultimately lethal in their actions. The need of all this depiction aroused because of all these reasons and Homer wanted to portray all this and send a message to everyone through his writings. Many researches and findings say that most of the Greek writings are a fantasy. May be that is the fact that Homer wrote all those twenty four books on this theme alone. Homer has this conception that Greek gods were anthropomorphic. They are generally depicted as humans but they are worshipped in the same way as any other god is. Their beauty is thought to be exceeding than that of humans as they are gods, but that again is all a myth. As they were considered to be humans, they were also subjected to misery, sufferings and pain. As these gods were thought of having powers to directly communicate to humans, the humans were always delineated as the wretched ones and the gods were holding the image of having all the superfluous power to do anything they like, which can include inducing affliction as well.

Monotheism rests on the idea that there is only one god and all of the beings believe in that only god, they worship that god only and have faith in him that all of their sorrows would come to an end if they keep on praying him. There are many characteristics of such o monotheism; some of them are mentioned here: simplicity, perfection, sovereignty, omnipotence, demand for total devotion, and mercy. The Greek mythology states that there were many gods for every state of the universe. As many gods were operating many different things at the same time, so there was a likelihood of conflict between them. Due to this incongruity, there was an inbuilt sense of compliance in those gods that every being should acquiescent to what they will to do. Every being should be submissive and subservient to those gods in every respect, otherwise flagitiousness would be observed. Each god has its own criteria of clemency and therefore requires the person to be obedient to him in the same way.

All of the narrations in Greek mythology state that the gods have been involved in immortality and in many of the deaths of the heroes. Much of the stuff is 'canonical'. In Homer's poem Iliad, there is a long recounting of types of wounds inflicted and details of individual deaths but the poet tends to ignore the excessive gruesome and inhumane parts of the total account. The Iliad scarcely presents the world as the Homeric audience knows it, the gods come down to address to the heroes and the heroes are equipped with so many superficial powers that they can do things which no other ordinary human being can do. Local Greek histories say that the beginning of the world is presupposed, although anthropogonies did occasionally exist. It is surprising that the earth is mentioned only now as giving birth to the heaven, but also created heaven. Heaven is called 'bronze' in Iliad and 'iron' in Odyssey. Heaven was an insignificant god who had no cult in ancient Greece. Such and many other examples can be seen in the Iliad which are the true portrayals of fantasies of the Greek myth. The Greek person would be very inexorable about his deeply inheritances.

A god is meant to be merciful and grateful for all of his beings. The god needs to possess all those characteristics which are mentioned above before. If they are not virtuous, the creations would not be inclined to worship him, or we can say if his creations are worshipping him, that would be just because of the fear of his miseries inflicted upon him otherwise. The Greeks gods face the same forms of happiness and sorrows. So the Greeks consider their gods as an 'icon'.

References:

  • http://homepage.usask.ca/~jrp638/CourseNotes/HomMyth.html#homtrojwar October 10, 2009
  • http://www.web-articles.info/e/a/title/Anthropomorphic-conception-and-Greek-humanism/ October 10, 2009

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