Oedipus - a True Leader Is Born

Topics: Oedipus, Moses, Plagues of Egypt Pages: 2 (851 words) Published: November 5, 2012
A leader is like a guide; because others depend on him, he must be confident in his own abilities and be able to direct his followers towards their goal. While anyone can be a leader, a true leader is born, not made; although certain qualities can be taught, a natural-born leader possesses the intrinsic skill to command respect in a way a taught leader cannot. In Sophocles’ Oedipus the King, Oedipus shows himself to be a true leader. He is a great king and leader, as shown through the eradication of the Sphinx and the cleansing of the city’s miasma. While Oedipus is ultimately the source of the city’s woes, he still did all he could to find and purge the pollution from the city. Unlike Oedipus, Moses was not a natural-born leader. Moses did not possess faculty of commanding others; rather, his capacity for leadership was endowed upon him by God. Before his life changing encounter with God, he was a meek man, aware of the injustice of the world but incapable of doing anything about it. Thus, in comparison with Oedipus, Moses cannot be called a true leader. Their difference lies essentially in the source of their powers. Oedipus is born to be a leader; he is completely self-reliant. No divine involvement bestows his abilities upon him. More than anything, the gods are against him. Since his father violated the sacred pact between the guest and host, he has been cursed and doomed to a tragic end. Despite this, Oedipus’ innate skills are still able to bring him to his high status. With his intellect, he correctly answers the Sphinx’s riddle that countless others failed to solve, thus saving Thebes from the Sphinx and becoming king. Oedipus also possesses great resourcefulness. With all of the problems plaguing Thebes, he is not foolish enough to try to do everything by himself. He always knew the right people to ask for help. For example, he sends Creon to ask the Oracle of Delphi the reason behind the plagues. Also, after hitting a dead-end, he sends for the blind...
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