Personal Responsibility and the Gods’ Role in the Odyssey Essays

1019 WordsAug 9, 20105 Pages
The gods play an important part in Odysseus’ journey home, bringing him closer and farther from his homeland. They constantly intervene in the lives of the many characters in The Odyssey. Though Odysseus is a hero, the gods control his life. It is as if he were the main character in a video game and the gods are fighting over who controls his life. Personal responsibility is overshadowed by the gods’ eagerness to grab the controller. Homer disregards personal responsibility by showing how the gods take care of everything for Odysseus. It was ultimately Athena who begged Zeus to let Odysseus go home by saying Father Zeus…..never let any sceptered king be kind and gentle now, not he ruled remembers Odysseus…show more content…
She kept the controller away from Poseidon, protected Odysseus, and sped his journey home fully realizing that Poseidon wanted Odysseus to pay for the many injuries he committed against himself and his son, Polyphemus. Athena’s navigational skills and quick thinking made Odysseus’ victory feasible. She provided a disguise for Odysseus, came up with a battle plan, and kept his anger in check by letting the suitors continue their taunts against him. Athena “had no mind to let the brazen suitors hold back now from their heart-rending insults-she meant to make the anguish cut still deeper into the core of Laertes’ son Odysseus” (Homer page 419). Additionally, she helped Odysseus battle the suitors, “looming out of the rafters high above them, brandished her man-destroying shield of thunder, terrifying the suitors out of their minds, and down the hall they panicked” (Homer page 448). Saving Odysseus’ and his servants’ lives, Athena acted against the suitors and, undoubtedly, won the battle for him by scaring off the suitors who were not already dead. Though Athena takes the prize for interfering with Odysseus’ life the most out of the rest of the gods, Poseidon also fights and claims the controller, but he prevents Odysseus from reaching Ithaca instead of helping him (please refer to the quote from page 78). Because of Odysseus’ actions against Poseidon’s
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