Fate or as others may know it, destiny, is a person’s predetermined path in life. Those who meddle with it by following their own free will are defying their true purpose in life. The following words of the author, Anthon St. Maarten, “ failing to meet your true destiny is a tragic act of free will”, reveals how the characters in Sophocles’ play Oedipus The King lose their true destiny. In ancient Greece, it was believed that fate was a rudimentary part of daily life. Destiny had been believed to be a path given by the gods themselves towards humankind. This path was portrayed upon people by oracles, a priest or priestess that would act as a medium of god with whom they would deliver a prophecy upon a person. To oppose one's own destiny is as same as one to oppose the gods themselves. The characters, Oedipus, Laius, and Jocasta all oppose their fate and abuse their own power of free will which leads to their downfall in the play.
Firstly, there is Laius, the King of Thebes, although not having any dialogue in the play, still provides an incredible amount of information towards the understanding of the results of opposing fate itself. Laius and his wife, Queen Jocasta, had a baby boy and following the common tradition, Laius went to an oracle, the Oracle of Delphi, to discuss the destiny that his son, Oedipus, had been given by the gods. Upon meeting with the oracle, Laius discovers that Oedipus’ destiny is that “[he is] destined to murder his father [Laius] and marry his
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“With free will comes consequences.”When your own free will you can wrong decisions very quickly and hurt you or someone else in the process. The choices you make can plan your life the opposite of they way you want to live them.The play is about a man named Oedipus who was the king of Thebes. They people of thebes are complaining to him about the plaque. They ask him to pray to the gods for help, so they do not die like the others died of sickness. The gods tell him he has to find the person who killed the king before him, King Laius. At the end of the story he figures out that Laius is his father and he killed him and that he married his mother. When he finds out that he caused his people so much pain he couldn’t bare to see so he stabbed his eyes out and his wife Jocasta hanged herself because she could not bear to live with the sorrow of marrying her son. By exercising his free will, Oedipus’ actions lead to his downfall.
Throughout history, mankind has weighed an individual’s ability to shape their own future against the influence of a greater universal power. Literature allows for the interpretation of this question based on personal experiences, beliefs, and morals. Therefore, no definite answer could ever be provided, only examples and possibilities. In Sophocles’ Oedipus, individual power to reason and choose is deterred by a predestined fate from the Gods. Regardless of his attempts at prevention, Oedipus’ fate ironically leads to his downfall, and thus a Greek tragedy is born.
Determinists believe that every event of our life is strictly determined by a preceding event. This order follows until the sequence of events dates back before our birth, thus, beyond the notion of oneself as an individual. From this theory, one could argue that there could never be an attribution of responsibility to individuals since they cannot be held responsible for events dating before their birth. At the end of Oedipus the King written by Sophocles, Oedipus attributes full responsibility for his wrongdoings and stabs his eyes out and “with it the memory of [his] sorrow” (Sophocles 74). Oedipus is a literary archetype known as the
Sixteenth century play writers often focused on the tragic irony of fate. One such play-writer is Sophacles. In one of his later plays, “Oedipus”, he writes the tragic story of a man who can’t avoid his pre-destined fate, and that some things just can’t be changed by the people in your life no matter how hard they try. Oedipus, the main character of this tragedy, he is a protagonist ruled by conflict and fate. This is evident in the characters traits and motivations, interactions with others, and the characters language and what others say about him.
Destiny and fate both play a similar role in this play. These are two crucial themes that are central to the play; they have a devastating impact on the story line and unleash terror on the characters. Fate is one of the opposition elements of the play that is influenced by one’s own action but ultimately is dictated by events beyond anybody’s control. By elevating the importance of fate, Sophocles suggests that characters cannot be fully responsible for their actions, but instead, they are unaware that their destiny is controlled by a supreme power. These two main themes cause tragedy and despair to many characters, however, the most affected one is King Oedipus.
In The Oedipus Cycle, fate plays a large role in each character 's destiny. Oedipus is told at a young age that he is doomed to murder his father when he is older. Antigone, trying to give a proper burial to her brother kills herself once she is caught. The main characters in Oedipus Rex and Antigone are doomed to face their bleak future because it is in their fate to do so. They are both destined for a tragic end. Although the audience is aware of Oedipus’ future, his tragic flaw is not outwardly known. The idea of fate and prophecy serves to shed light onto the flaws of each character that ultimately lead to their downfall. In both plays, fate functions as a divulgence into the future that the character 's are better off not knowing. Each character 's knowledge of their fate causes him to act out erratically, and eventually lead to his downfall.
Fate is a crucial element that often occurs frequently in Greek writing. Throughout the play Oedipus tries to change his fate. He found out that no matter what he did that his fate was sealed and there was no escaping that fate. His fate was predicted that he would kill his father, Laius and marry and have sexual relations with his mother, Jocasta. Oedipus wants to avoid this entire situation once he learns what his fate is told to be by three oracles. “OEDIPUS
In Sophocles' Oedipus the King, the themes of fate and free will are very strong throughout the play. Only one, however, brought about Oedipus' downfall and death. Both points could be argued to great effect. In ancient Greece, fate was considered to be a rudimentary part of daily life. Every aspect of life depended and was based upon fate (Nagle 100). It is common belief to assume that mankind does indeed have free
As a society, we as human beings tend to believe we can control our own fate. However, the people of Ancient Greece had very different views on the subject. The play Oedipus Rex by Sophocles describes the story of Oedipus, a Greek king of the city Thebes, who was exposed to an abhorrent prophecy at birth. He spent his entire life trying to run away from this fate only to make that atrocious fate a reality. The integration of fate into the play displays the ideals of the author in how he believes fate is an all controlling being that cannot be escaped, that free will is simply a false hope imposed by humans, and that messing with fate could lead to terrible consequences.
Every great tragic hero struggles to accept his fate and desires to control his destiny. In Shakespeare’s Hamlet and Sophocles’ Oedipus The King, the tragic heroes both search to find justice for their past king’s death. However, in terms of accepting their fate and controlling their destiny, they struggle differently. Firstly, Hamlet obtains a task that he can choose to obey or disobey; in contrast, Oedipus receives a prophecy that forecasts certain actions that he must complete. Secondly, Hamlet is able to prolong his destiny through procrastinating and distracting himself; yet, Oedipus tries to avoid his destiny and results in partially completing it. Thirdly, since Hamlet willingly fulfills his destiny he is able to die honorably, yet Oedipus unwillingly fulfills his prophecy and suffers consequently. Hamlet and Oedipus appear to be similar as a result of their circumstances, yet in regard to their struggle between fate and free will, Hamlet holds an advantage since he accepts his fate.
Oedipus’ disbelief in the oracle’s fate for him, lead him to disbelieve in fate and believe in free will, that all people are destined to lead their own journey and author their own stories within their lives. In the play “The Oedipus Cycle” by Sophocles, Oedipus Rex was destined for a life that, he did not believe in, nor did he desire to partake in. In this Greek mythology Sophocles reveals a story about a King and Queen whom received a prophecy of having a son who killed his father and married his mother.
To have a fatalistic perspective on the experiences one acquires is to believe that humans do not partake in the development of our fate — that one’s future is inculcated in one’s story. Ergo, the implication is that the role of choice is limited. In a quixotic world, fate would work in conjunction with quotidian choices and, therefore, create a favorable outcome. Relating back to ancient Greek literature, playwright Sophocles wrote a play named Oedipus the King that addresses the nuanced roles of fate and free will — whether one encounters adversity as a result of their self-imposed actions or their predetermined path. This ambiguity of the interconnected roles of fate and free will allows for an intricate development of the theme. As Oedipus attempts to evade his prophesied fate, which leads to an unraveling of events that allows for the fall of Oedipus as a tragic hero, fate and free will make themselves present through character development, motifs, and metaphorical symbolism.
One of Sophocles surviving and most notable tragedies, Oedipus Rex, explores the role of something as unnerving as fate and something as open as free will. In Oedipus Rex, Sophocles wants the audience to leave knowing that even with fate at play, free will can be more dangerous than something we have no control over. From beginning, middle, and end Sophocles makes use of Aristotelian elements to develop the theme that free will ultimately endangers worse.
Oedipus Rex, written by Sophocles at approximately 430 BC, is viewed as one of the greatest tragic plays of all time. Greek plays were predominantly performed in religious ceremonies in honor of the Greek Gods. This play, whose plot is fulfilled in a day, engages the audience to ponder on the interactions between fate and free will. It also captivates the minds of the audience by stimulating thought on the implications of obliviousness and knowledge. Initially, Oedipus, the protagonist believes his decisions would help him evade his fate and exert control over his life. However, contrary to his beliefs, his choices lead him to his fate. This essay will explore Sophocles’ characterization of Oedipus to convey: free will or human choices contribute
In recent years, critics of Oedipus Rex have focused on the role of fate and free will in the story and the lesson that this play teaches one about the gods. These are important factors in the Sophocles’ play, however many think there may be an even deeper theme that people are overlooking. In his article, “Introduction: What Is a father?,” Pietro Pucci reflects on the modern criticisms of Oedipus Rex by discussing the chaos and definite end of Oedipus’ prophecy, and delves deeper into an aspect that offers up something entirely new: the role of a father.