Gilgamesh: Searching for Immortality
The Epic of Gilgamesh belongs to the treasures of world literature. Such high evaluation of this story is explained not only by the fact that it was written thousands years ago by ancient people but by the important idea that is revealed via the character of the young king who during his lifetime experienced significant change that led to formation of a new person. Egoistic leader at the first sight he turns into wise person able to appreciate ordinary life and things he possesses.
Gilgamesh learns from Siduri the idea of having eternal life in order to be able to live long life with family and children. The willingness of Gilgamesh to find immortality depicted in the Epic reveals the hidden human desire to rule the world and have total power and control over everything. Thus, this very opportinity of being an immortal creature makes Gilgamesh be similar to gods. Of course, he understands this as well as it becomes clear that searching for eternal life will not be an easy process and is a struggle indeed. Nevertheless, he accepts such challenge and travels a long and dark journey full of tests and danger.
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Heroic actions that he does while his travelling add him fame and approval. But fame is not so important in comparison with the lesson he gets. Finally Gilgamesh comes to wisdom that mortal life is also worth of appreciation. Happiness does not depend on life durability. Harmony with the nature, people, and serving to others adds sense to human life. Young king with narcisstic and egoistic features experiences total transformation. This mental change makes him forsake searching for immortality and power.
To sum it up it should be pointed out that epic of Gilgamesh is a serious example of humanization and civilization. The main hero in his desire to be immortal and equal to gods represents a weak creature for which superpower would be the only possible way to defeat his inhibitions. And only numeral trials provided him a chance to understand real value of mortal life and gain a fame of wise king that is more valuable than be immortal.
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