Monday, September 2, 2013

The Price Oedipus Paid

In the play Oedipus Rex, the main character was a slave to fate. As a baby his parents were told their son would kill his father and marry his mother. In an attempt to avoid that fate, they gave their baby away to be killed. Oedipus survived and became the prince of Corinth. Oedipus then traveled back to Thebes and fulfilled his terrible fate. He unintentionally killed his father Laius out of self-defense and married his mother Jocasta. Years later he needed to find who killed King Laius to save his people from the turmoil they were enduring and in doing so he found he killed Laius which led to the discovery that his wife/mother's prophesy came true. Because he committed a serious sin of incest his family was forever cursed. He nobly left his city and sacrificed his pride and happiness for his people. Though it truly was not his fault, he accepted his fate and the consequences that came with it, but only at the end. When he first heard the possibility that he (though unintentionally) committed incest, he fought it. He tried everything in his power to take out the prophet who told him his fate, Tiresias, and the man who advised him to see the prophet, Creon. He did not accept his fate and fought against it. However, he then realized he was not willing to pay the full price to escape his fate, and accepted it. As the country of Thebes soon found out what he had done, Oedipus' guilt was unbearable. He was entrapped by his conscious and guilt. He the prayed the heavy price, and left the children and country he loved, to escape the bonds of guilt.
Oedipus found that some freedom costs too much to pay. He could not pay the price to free from his fate. It may not even be possible to flee from one's fate. However, he did pay the price to no longer be captive to his immense guilt. I suppose, when it comes to freedom, some freedoms are worth paying the price. To no longer feel the embarrassment and guilt Oedipus felt, he gave up his family. But he dealt with the binds of fate. He paid the varied price for freedom from himself and sacrificed things and people he loved in the meantime. 

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