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Epic of Gilgamesh Essay

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Updated: Jul 1st, 2020

The aim of the mythic expedition of the male protagonist is to discover special understanding which will re-establish steadiness to him and the entire society. The conclusion of this knowledge is in most cases is personified in the female personality that the male protagonist comes across in his expedition. It also helps the reader to understand the Mesopotamian notion of women.

Nevertheless, the female personality could be hazardous since she has ability to build or put into destruction with respect to how she is tackled and how she utilizes her authority. Epic of Gilgamesh portrays women as possessing ample knowledge, authority and lure to put into success or into destruction. The hero when tangled with a woman is at liberty from illusion of contestants and achieves knowledge to dictate his destiny. However, the same woman could be risky and beholding her might be detrimental if not properly armed.

According to the Greek mythology, the ideal character is awarded with the role of facing limitations and, obstacles but overcomes them though courage, noble deeds and a spirit self sacrifice for the wellbeing of the society.

Gilgamesh is portrayed as a hero in the epic whose heroism is significantly developed by women in various instances. Epic of Gilgamesh presents female characters that express their knowledge and understanding in line with his mission. Gilgamesh, the Sumerian King whose quest for immortality was real is a character with great power, bravery and might.

The leader is a true hero whose intelligence is revealed in the eyes of women. He is brave while at war to remove evil beasts and pursues mission to find out the solution to the community’s problem. Gilgamesh relies to God for might in times of war, he heeds to his mother’s counsel to attain wisdom as well as the people he encounters.

Priestess Shamhat is the foremost female character awarded with the responsibility of calming Enkidu, the untamed man. She achieves it by moving into the wilderness and undressing to expose her womanhood to seduce Enkidu for a whole week. Enkidu could not resist the temptation and he engages into sex with her.

This makes him a real man and stops being primitive which marks the initiation of civilization (Spielvogel 13). He is become involved in a loyal relationship to his community and more particularly with Gilgamesh. In turn, through the epic, Gilgamesh portrays despicable ability being a warrior with the supplement of Enkidu.

His might in encouraging the armies is obvious since he leads them with bravery and attains victory over his opponents. His leadership skills are seen when the tribe is enthusiastic to go into war since they have faith in their king as they are assured of victory. For instance, his mightiness is portrayed in the war against Humbaba in which he comes victorious.

This war is not any easy since even the elders would advise him to led Enkidu being on the lead. He is anxious while going into the battle but he proved his expertise by assassinating the beast and going back home securely. It is evident that Gilgamesh is a real hero, with ample skills and is a wise leader willing to sacrifice his life for his kingdom.

He sought wisdom on death and now he could not fear it since it was inevitable and that why he faces it head-on through dangerous encounters. He also recognizes other people’s efforts and awards them accordingly. Therefore, a woman is the initiator of his heroism which is enhanced by Enkidu, a man who was initially valueless.

Enkidu becomes domesticated and he turns to be wiser. This portrays a woman as a benevolent power capable of transmitting wisdom and civilization into the male character, Enkidu which arms him for future escapades. He helps Gilgamesh to pursue risky missions to save his people and thus, emerges a hero.

However, his close ally, Enkidu, dies and this reawakens Gilgamesh to become aware of his human nature. He now comprehend that death is inevitable and at one time, he would lose his kingdom due to his death. He now quest to become immortal as he questions the prejudices that life has to offer. Gilgamesh and Enkidu represent true friendship that coexists harmoniously to salvage their society. When Enkidu dies, Gilgamesh is so annoyed about death and engages in a mission to fight it.

Nevertheless, he encounters Shamash, a woman who enlightens him on the meaning of death as one meant to endow memories of the one who has passed on. Gilgamesh’s, grief reveals a spirit of self denial stating that he cannot die like his friend and pursues to achieve everlasting life. This exposes his fears of having to work hard only to die and become forgotten.

He forgets that immortality belongs only to the gods and therefore, he should live his life to the fullest. Shamash helps him to become aware that immortality cannot be attained by the common man and therefore, there is no need to pursue it. What is important is to leave behind a legacy that you truly were a great man who lived harmoniously with others.

In the Epic of Gilgamesh, another most important woman is Shiduri, the pub custodian who meet Gilgamesh as he is morning the demise of Enkidu and trying to find ways become immortal. When he gives details his motives, Shiduri explains her personal opinion stating that human are meant to ultimately die as the gods dictates it.

Therefore, man should enjoy as long as he lives, not in grieve but in happiness. Gilgamesh disregards her wisdom and as a result, he submerges in great agony and never attains immortality. In a different case, a woman is also seen as a destroyer who puts the hero into temptation.

Ishtar, a goddess exposes this when she seductively summons Gilgamesh to marry her when he is successful over Humbaba. She tells him that he would be rich if he married her and his kingdom would be unending. Gilgamesh wisely avoids being ensnared by her seductions since he is conscious of his limitations. He also cares about Ishtar’s character of causing demise to men who do not heed to her desires, pointing forward various instances.

He wonders if he would be peculiar to her if he married her since he would most likely, also have a catastrophic end. This emphasizes his focus in salvaging his people irrespective of seductions from women. His expertise is also seen when he resists Ishta’s seductions and when he faces her wrath.

In conclusion, Gilgamesh is so eager to free his people from all evils that have plagued the city. In the epic, Gilgamesh is foresighted and is able to sense danger to ensure his society is secure.

He is apple to win the trust of his people for them to entrust their safety in his hands. Women appear to be the most important tool in arming the hero with essential knowledge that he needs to alter him and the entire society as well. A woman is portrayed as a symbol of magnificence and power in the Mesopotamian society where sex with a woman is viewed as sacred and able to transform a person.

Work Cited

Spielvogel, Jackson. Western Civilizations: A Brief History. 7Ed. Boston. Cengage Learning. 2010. Print.

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