Odysseus: From Hubris To A Selfless, Modest Hero

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Opposed to that of common thought, superman is not the only type of character that fits the heroic persona. Although “superheroes” typically come to mind when one thinks of a hero, there are many other ordinary people capable of extraordinary things. A hero is a person who takes the initiative to set out on a journey of internal growth. During this symbolic journey, one truly finds himself and betters the lives of other mentally and physically. In Homer’s epic poem The Odyssey, Odysseus takes the path of heroism, resulting in the reborn spirit of a selfless, modest hero. During the process, Odysseus is faced with many challenges that he must overcome in order to earn the noble title. Odysseus proves himself to be a well-deserving hero because he is intelligent with his decisions, he displays cleverness, and he rids himself of hubris. Odysseus is faced with many obstacles in which he must make smart decisions. Throughout The Odyssey, Odysseus is frequently faced with hard decisions that he must make to benefit himself and his crew. One of the most difficult decisions that Odysseus is forced to make is the choice between crossing the path of Skylla or Kharybdis. On one hand, if they go to the side of Skylla, then six of Odysseus’s men are bound to be captured and eaten by the monster. On the other hand, if they go to the side of Kharybdis, than it is a lottery between losing all the crew members to a deathly whirlpool, or everyone making it out alive. In this case scenario, Odysseus chooses to cross the path of Skylla because it would be a better decision for the crew to sacrifice only six members than to threaten the lives of all the crew members. As guaranteed, six crew members were captured and eaten by the creatures... ... middle of paper ... ... come, in weariness before your knees, your waters? Here is your servant; lord, have mercy on me.” (V, 467-473). Not only does Odysseus prove that he rids himself of hubris, but he also displays the transformation he endured during his hero’s journey, therefore proving his nobility and worthiness of being a hero. Odysseus confirms his role as a hero because he puts thought into all of his choices, he is quick-witted, and he frees himself of excessive self pride. From sacrificing six of his own men to surrendering his self pride to the gods, Odysseus accepts the noble title and proves himself deserving of being a hero. He took on a journey in which he grew into himself and rid himself of the one thing that held him back all along; his hubris. At the end of the journey, Odysseus went from being a selfish, cocky leader to being a selfless, modest hero.

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