Sunday, September 16, 2012

Response to Sophocles "Antigone"

By: Natalina (Sogang University)
What is the first thing that comes to mind when the word family is said? Is it memories of laughter and bright eyes and smiles? Or is it moments of silence under deep blue skies and glistening stars, where no words are exchanged yet no words are needed? Families deal with exchanges of the heart as well as health, happiness and safety. Families have no rules to abide by; therefore family responsibility is more important than abiding by the law. Every day, every person on earth has to make decisions. Whether they are good or bad depends on the consequences.

In the tragic story of Antigone, she picks family over the law because she knows deep down inside that it is morally right. She is a very smart young woman, unselfish, respectful, and virtuous. Therefore, she makes the finest decision in her life. She realized that her faith says death is the truly the beginning and by burying Polyneices she is giving herself and her brother everlasting life. Antigone's moral values were so important to her that she was willing to die in order to uphold them. She stands up for what she thinks is correct even when everyone else thinks she is immoral. Another admirable decision of Antigone is that although her sister did not agree to help, she pursued on. Her sister refuses because she is afraid of what will happen to her. So, Antigone acts alone. Even when Antigone is persecuted, she stands up for what she thinks is the right thing to do. Antigones goal of bringing her family together also helped other people learn valuable lessons. She has the responsibility of being loyal to her brother, Polyneices. Her intuition and strong will discourages her from listening to the power of the state and to disobey some of her family to respect another part of her family. She is an outstanding example of someone who did what she thought was right, while she was among fools, many hardships, and people who were discouragingly uncourageous. Her devotion leads to the destruction of Creon and herself, but her role as a part of her family does not stand in her determination to do what she believes to be right. It is for this reason that she is willing to destroy herself and Creon to fulfill her duty to both her immediate family and the Gods above.

According to the Bible, after Jesus was arrested by religious leaders, the apostles, his closest followers, fled his side. The apostle Peter was later recognized as one of Jesus' companions by the people who helped arrest him. Peter, however, denied even knowing Jesus three times. Peter believed that, should he remain faithful, he would be granted eternal life by God, and he knew that denying Jesus was a grave sin. However, his fear of his accusers caused him to err, and to stray from what he believed to be right. Today, many of us have been told to "Do what you believe is right, no matter what the cost". However, human weakness often causes one to falter, as Peter did, in an attempt to protect oneself. While many people advise others with the aforementioned motto, few will use it to the extent that is insisted upon in Antigone, the extent to which the apostle Peter should have applied it. 

Ancient Greeces life was full of egoism, and dictatorship. Sometimes life is worthless as in the story of Antigone. Her brother died as slaughter, the corpse was eaten by dogs and prey birds. They forgot that life is worth for each of us. But through this era that people of Greece could change and came up democracy as the largest ideology that we, human being practicing right now. Ancient Greeces life was full of egoism of their leadership because the leader did not intend to hear from others, even his family member, he just believed to his mind and seers who considered as the second God for him. He always disregarded his peoples voice, and no one was brave at the time to stand and against him. If he acted wrongly all people silent. Creon thought that if you were born as ordinary person then does your task as ordinary person and not to criticize the king. If there was anyone who with bravely stand up and against him he has greater power and he will diminished people who against him. Thats why he put himself as if he was everything, as if he owned this world alone and disregarded others. Ancient Greeces life was full of dictatorship because all ordinary people must obey the rule or law that ordered by their king. Even the rule or law seems unacceptable or irrational but you have no choice you have to obey it otherwise you will be out of life. Sometimes king made some decisions that was not wisdom or immoral decision. However, as ordinary people, they did not have right to stand against king, because only he has the power. 

Finally, the story obviously attempts to show that Antigone made the best decision, as she gets the support of the gods (the all-mighty, truly relevant force), and her opposition, Creon, suffers. The view of the play is that it is unquestionably important to follow the laws of the gods, to do what is right. Whether we agree with this play's message, or follow it, its theme lies in Antigone's triumph against mundane opposition. It definitely showed support for her conviction, and we should be able to accept or reject this view. Whether one gives one's life for a cause depends on how deeply our moral standards are embedded in one's heart, and on our acknowledgment of the importance of a sacrifice.

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