Along with politics, religion is something that everyone associates as a pillar of ancient Greek culture. The gods played an enormous role in the everyday lives of the Greeks. Although the fantastical gods of ancient Greece do not exist, the impact the gods had on the greeks was real. One of the best ways to see how the Greeks understood the role of the gods is to read stories or plays from Greek culture. Reading this popular culture of the Greeks makes it clear that the role of the gods was not always the same for everyone.
During the Persian war, the Spartans were thriving in their fight against the Persians, however over time the Persians began to grow stronger. After being to lose their fighting streak, the Athenians came in to help the Spartans and bring an end to Persian dominance once and for all (The Delian League, 1). After defeating the Persians in 449 B.C., the... ... middle of paper ... ... one another until they were no more. From the Persian War to the Peloponnesian the two states had changed a lot of the years. Starting from their greatest alliance yet first moment of subtle rivalry, the Persian War.
The Olympian Gods constantly intervene with the mortals, but what is the cause? The Gods show their power over mortal men through divine interaction, physically and psychologically. The Gods and mortals interact in many different ways, but the natures of these interactions are what truly explain and describe how ancient Greeks recognized their Gods. It is important to understand the nature of the Gods before trying to understand immortal and mortal interactions. Greek literature that dates as far back as Homer describes the Olympian Gods as anthropomorphic, meaning they have human characteristics.
Furthermore, as we believe in our gods, how dare we put such terrible charges upon the wisest man of Athens, who is sent by the gods to awake us Athenians? Thrasymachus said in a meeting with Cephalus, which many of us have attended, that justice are only made to advantage the ruling class and not as profitable as injustice. (The Republic I, 344a-d), which most of us have disagreed and only Socrates defended justice and convinced him. Today let us think only of justice in Socrates’ case. Are we today going to be
The gods weren’t just feared and respected out of tradition- because their forefathers honored them; the gods were very much real and present to the characters in ... ... middle of paper ... ...r over people. Menelaus was struck down by Hector in order to save Paris and Agamemnon was killed by Briseis in self-defense. Even though both died fighting, neither was glorified in death. Both mediums were provocative and illustrative of human nature; past and present. The movie Troy, although set in a starkly different time than the Iliad, still manages to effectively convey Homer’s story of pride and greed.
New York: Viking Penguin, div. of Penguin Books, Ltd. 1996. Rengakos, Antonios. Homertext und die Hellenistichen Dichter. Hermes.
The Dual Role of Gods in The Iliad With even a cursory exposure to ancient Greek texts, it is obvious that the gods and goddesses are very important in traditional Greek culture. As literary figures in mythos and specific poetry and drama, the gods dabble in the life of man, predict his fate, and routinely thwart any attempt for him to entirely forge his own future. But for those of us who are not extensively schooled in antiquities, it is hard to pinpoint exactly what the gods are to the ancient Greeks, and what they are to us as readers of literature who live outside the culture. Were the gods accepted as parable figures, meant to instruct? Were they used to explain acts of nature?