Death and Immortality in The Epic of Gilgamesh Essay

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Death and Immortality in The Epic of Gilgamesh

The search for immortality has been a major concern for many men and women all throughout history. True love and immortality in life would be a dream come true to many. To spend time with a special someone, the person one feels closest to, and never have to say good-bye would greatly appeal to most people. But when death steps into the picture, even with all the pain and devastation, one starts to re-evaluate themselves. In The Epic of Gilgamesh, Gilgamesh explores the possibility of immortality following the saddening death of his friend and brother, Enkidu. Gilgamesh, feeling the fear of his own mortality, sets out on a journey to search for a way to
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After the death of Gilgamesh’s brotherly companion, Enkidu, there is a significant change in his view of life. Gilgamesh cannot bear the loss of someone so special to him. Despite his tremendous amount of power and leadership, something in his life is missing. Gilgamesh weeps for seven days and nights, thinking that his friend would come back: “On this very day I myself shall mourn you! Hear me, O young men, hear me! Hear me, O elders of teeming Uruk, hear me! I shall weep for Enkidu, my friend, like a hired mourner-woman I shall bitterly wail”. It is during this period of the story that one can truly see the sympathetic and compassionate side of Gilgamesh. The grief in his heart has far exceeded the magnificent pride that he has previously displayed to the people of Uruk. With the death of his best friend, Gilgamesh is distraught with grief and denial. Not only is he miserable over the loss of Enkidu but also over his own death, which he knows will come some day: “I shall die, and shall I not then be as Enkidu? Sorrow has entered my heart! I am afraid of death, so I wander the wild, to find Uta-napishti, son of Ubar-Tutu”. Seeking to avoid death, Gilgamesh strives to learn the secret of everlasting life Being two-thirds god is not enough for Gilgamesh. No, he wants immortality: “I look at you, Utanapishti: your form is no
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