The Trojans are helpless to stop the fall of Troy no matter how hard they try. During this era, fate was a universally accepted idea throughout Greek society (Raphals, 553). However, just because Troy is fated to fall doesn’t mean that the gods can’t delay its fall. The gods are divided on which side prevails in the war, but Zeus temporarily forbids them from interfering in the war, saying that he “shall cause the Trojans to be driven back from the ships, until the Greeks capture steep Ilion” (Lombardo, 15. 69-71). Zeus knows that the Greeks will prevail in the war and take Troy; however, that doesn’t mean that he can’t manipulate the war for a short while. He delays Greek victory by giving the Trojans several advantages throughout the war, showing that fate itself cannot be changed, but the way it carries out can. On the other hand, we see later in the book that Achilles has two fates: if he stays and fights in the war, he will die but gain eternal glory, but if he goes home, he will live a long life (9. 424-429). Achilles has a choice o...
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...s back. This shows that although they were predestined for greatness, their choices instead led them to God’s fury. Their choices changed their fate, showing that the Holy Bible opposes fatalism.
The opposition between fatalism and free will carries on. In the Iliad, Zeus cannot change but can instead alter the way it carries out, like how Juno tries to do so in the Aeneid. The mortals, Achilles and Aeneas, however, have limited free will and are forced to do as fate plans. The Holy Bible opposes the fatalistic views in the Iliad and Aeneid, by showing how Adam and Eve’s choice to eat from the tree of knowledge changed their fate to live in luxury and how the Jews’ choice to reject God changed their fate to live in great blessings. The Holy Bible therefore shows that people do have free will and can change their fates, whereas the Iliad and Aeneid show the opposite.
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