In the beginning Grendel’s perspective of himself leads to various encounters that help him discover the meaninglessness to his very own existence. From the beginning through many centuries of pondering Grendel has come to the idea that the world consists entirely of Grendel and not-Grendel. Thus Grendel begins his search for meaning of his very own life with an existential philosophy, the belief that emphasizes the existence of the individual person as a free and responsible agent determining their own development through acts of the will. While Grendel’s overall perspective of nature is that of mindless and mechanical machine, he believes that he is a separate entity from this machine. Furthermore he holds the philosophy that he himself is a god like creature that “blink by blink” creates the world. This phil...
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In the end Grendel’s pathetic attempts at discovering a meaning to his life are all for moot! As he continuously tried on the ideas of everyone else around him, like the dragon’s nihilistic perspective, the soothing illusions of the Shaper, and his original existential perspective. Only taking bits and pieces of all of them and confusing himself even more. He tries too hard to find the right philosophy or meaning to his life, all the while refusing to search within himself. The dragon died happy with his nihilistic beliefs, the Shaper died happy with his imagination, but Grendel died with indecision and a muddle of many beliefs in which he found only a gloomy death. Gardner ultimately uses Grendel’s unpreventable death and ultimate destruction combined with the ideals of nihilism to emphasize the ultimate meaningless destruction of everything that exists.
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