Free Will and its Effects on Greeks, Christians and Romans

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Free Will

“Free Will and its effect on the Greeks, Christians, and Romans”

Free will is defined as: Voluntary choice or decision; freedom of humans to make choices that are not determined by prior causes or by divine intervention (Webster’s Online Collegiate Dictionary). Free will had an effect on the Greeks, Christians, and the Romans. Three stories, Oedipus the King, the Bible, and the Aenied, respectively, that we have studied and that fall in each society are examples of how free will is altered by different societies and how it effects their lives.

Oedipus the King was written by a Greek, Sophocles. During this time, the Greeks believed that everything was done for the gods, they did not have free will over their lives. There are many examples in the play in which the gods are controlling and tell the people what they should do or how they should live their lives. At the end of the play Oedipus asks Creon to banish him from Thebes:

Oedipus: Drive me out of Thebes, in exile.

Creon: Not I. Only the gods can give you that.

Oedipus: Surely the gods hate me so much-

Creon: You’ll get your wish at once…(Oedipus 639 lines 1168-71).

Creon and Oedipus discuss here how they have no control over their lives, decisions and all. The gods are the ones who make all of the choices. Oedipus, along with the rest of the Greeks, believed that he had no say in the way his life was going to turn out. He believed that it was destined for his life to end the way it did, with him being cursed and banished from Thebes.

The Bible is the word of God for the Christians. There are many examples of free will throughout the Bible. Christians believe that God gave us free will to do as we please, but whatever we do should be ...

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...s different in each society, the Greeks, Christians, and Romans were all effected in one way or another. Whether it was the gods controlling their lives or God watching over their lives, free will had a very strong imprint on how each society lived their life.


Works Cited

Genesis. The Bible. The Norton Anthology: World Masterpieces. Ed. Lawall. & Mack. New York: W.W. Norton & Co., 1999. 51-72.

Merriam Webster’s Online Collegiate Dictionary. 2000. Merriam Webster’s Collegiate

Dictionary. 8 October 2000.

Sophocles. Oedipus the King. The Norton Anthology: World Masterpieces. Ed.

Lawall. & Mack. New Tork: W.W. Norton & Co.,1999. 596-640.

Virgil. The Aenied. The Norton Anthology: World Masterpieces. Ed. Lawall. & Mack.

New York: W.W. Norton & Co., 1999. 814-895.
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