Mythology: Zeus and Achilles

Topics: Iliad, Trojan War, Greek mythology Pages: 3 (1205 words) Published: September 18, 2008
In Greek mythology there is an innumerable amount of gods, most of which have a specialized function in both the realm of gods and humans. Yet, no god is more striking, more memorable, or more powerful than Zeus, the father of the gods of Olympus. His authority is far-ranging and definite; there is no revoking his command once it has been ordained. In the same fashion, there are hundreds of Greek heroes, yet there are none braver, stronger, or more wrathful than the swift runner Achilles who commands respect from all the Greeks and yields to no man. However, despite all their strength and authority, neither Zeus nor Achilles appears capable of eschewing or defying the omnipresent power that holds more sway than them: fate. Sans doubt, once a human is dealt his hand, there is nothing that he can humanly do in order to prevent his fate. As for the gods, with all their power and independence, they are still undeniably bound by the hands of fate. Fate is a peculiar phenomenon in that it has no limitations, yet it is a fixed occurrence that does not change over time or through the progression of different events that may influence it. Powerful men and gods such as Achilles and Zeus may do as their hearts and minds desire, because there is no one who can stop or defy them. Thus, the role of fate becomes clear, since fate is without desire or mind; its existence is to curb the ridiculous and emotional wishes of powerful beings who cannot be stopped otherwise.

Fundamentally, there is no god or man stronger or more powerful than Zeus; he is capable of doing whatever he wants, whenever he pleases. Given this omnipotent ability, all his desires should become immediate manifestations, yet this would only lead to chaos due to the lack of limitations on freedom. There are multiple times during the events of The Iliad that begin with Zeus seriously contemplating using his unlimited power to fulfill his desires yet ultimately ends in his freedom being restricted by fate. In...
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