Wednesday, February 26, 2014

The Iliad, among other things

           It's been one of those weeks when you know you've been crazy busy, but you look back and think. . .  "What was I busy with again? I know I've an a good excuse for fall off the face of the planet. Just let me find."

            For World Literature, I have to read The Iliad by Homer. I thought it'd be a stuffy classic. But the translation we're using is terrible. For instance, when someone referred to Agamemnon's plunder, he used the word "stuff." And when taunting the enemy for having missed him, one warrior says, "Looks like you didn't have my number after all." Seriously?! This is a classic of classics. The person who translated this obvious doesn't know what he's doing. I had anticipated using a lot of brain power to read the Iliad, but I'm striving more to stay awake with all the cheesy pick up lines. :P

           Ignoring the translation. . . the concepts, characters, and overall plot of the story is interesting. There's a part where one of the gods asks, "Does it make him a better or nobler man?" That one line by itself had me thinking. About people, characters, and even myself. Is what they are doing, what I am doing, making us a more honorable person, or a disappointment to mankind (okay, that may have been dramatic).

           Am I friends with someone simply because they offer good conversation? Or do their actions and words have true meaning? Is one of my characters likable because they have a sensational sense of humor, or do they do the right things for the right reasons even when it's hard and nobody's looking? Are my own goals something that is of lasting importance? Are my goals only for myself? Are they something that is significant to others? Are my current everyday actions and words something that will inspire others to the Truth? Am I not only doing the right thing, but also doing it with the right motives?
          Sorry I don't mean to get intellectual or. . . philosophical, I guess. But it's interesting that what's going on in the Iliad is similar to what I heard in church yesterday. All it takes is an attitude to change everything. A good attitude. Or a bad attitude. At the beginning of the Iliad both King Agamemnon and Achilles were asked to do what was right. To honor the gods and respect each other as fellow Greek warriors. They both refused; they decided to have a bad attitude, to get offended and nurse their egos. And so Agamemnon brought grief to his men, and Achilles prayed for the destruction of his own army to teach them a lesson. Even the gods have attitudes toward the two opposing sides, Greece and Troy, that have them involved in the war that have them defying Fate/Harmony which is supposed to be the power that has authority over all them, even Zeus.
          What happens as a consequence of this? Achilles' best friend is killed while trying add the Greek army. Achilles is overcome by grief but is still not willing to admit he is in the wrong. The only person who ever does anything right, Hector a Trojan prince, is killed because the gods and Achilles are mostly against Trojans with little reason beyond their own pride.
          After book 22, the professor said, "That's the end of the book, guys. The good guy dies. Have a nice day." Have a nice day? What! The world just came crashing down on the only good character and you say, "Have a nice day"? Ugh.

           I actually need to finish book 24 today. Especially since we have a quiz tomorrow. It's just interesting how it can apply to my own books. Rocky has the attitude that Oddball runs from any kind of danger, and Oddball has the attitude that Rocky isn't all that bright. This causes tension in their friendship. They have difficulty working together when they're in danger. But when they relent and let their attitudes change, they are able to understand each other better.

           It's all fiction. But it's true in today's present world. It's happening now. I have an attitude that I dislike my job, so when I go to work all I can see is the bad. But when I open the door to let my attitude change, I can see that it's not that bad and other people have it worse.

           In reality, people lie; they even lie to themselves. You only see the surface of things half the time. Sometimes I wonder if fiction holds more truth, than reality.


  1. I guess this isn't the best post to comment on. But it is your newest one, and I think that is how this works. But all of your wonderful thoughts on being a better person...and all I can say is, Hi, I'm Striker and I am commenting because I and my comrades have kidnapped Jack and we've taken over her blog and we are answering her comments.
    So, really great thoughts, and I agree with them and I plan to try some of them out....but after we've let Jack go. I don't think it would do any good starting now when we have her locked up.

    You left a comment on her blog, so I am here to answer it. I don't know how Jack does it though, so you just get whatever I can think of., there are no girl Wizards. At least, not like that. There are girls who are the half blood children of Elves and Humans, but Wizards have to have beards. What is the girl version of a Wizard? I've heard witch, but that doesn't sound right. Whatever the girl version is though, there are those. I just don't know what their name is. Maybe I can ask Wizard Aaron, though I don't think he'd say. He's not too helpful.

    1. Do you usually lock your author up? And do you do it with any reason in mind or is it just for kicks?

      Anyhow, it is pleasant to meet you, Striker. I'm a little disappointed at not being a Wizard. But if there are any Rangers, maybe? I'd love that rank even better.


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