In ‘Oedipus the King,’ goodness is shown through Oedipus Rex’s great qualities, as a man, showing goodness, and remaining consistent throughout his journey as a king. He illustrates his moral goodness in his prologue while giving his speech to the suffering people of Thebes. As a tragic hero, Oedipus, the ultimate protagonist in the ‘Oedipus the King,’ exhibited admirable qualities, which the audience/readers can associate with to show goodness (Sophocles 505), as expected in the Christian faith. Based on the Aristotelian ideas of good and bad, the goodness in “Oedipus Rex” was also shown when the people of Thebes needed someone to rescue them from ruins. He gave his best effort while urging his people to remain steadfast if they were to overcome adversity. This essay seeks to explore the work in ‘Oedipus the King’ to determine how it helps us value goodness, recognize and appreciate beauty, and understand the truth by examining these attributes from the Christian faith perspective.
To begin with, the work in ‘Oedipus the King’ helps in valuing goodness by presenting extreme levels of adversity that requires assistance, as shown by Oedipus Rex. His presence at the time of trouble meant that the people of Thebes had someone to look up to. In this case, he demonstrated the importance of being good in our day to day living by appreciating every small deed offered to us by those in positions of power, as well as those who can access resources. Life can be difficult, as well as present struggles regarding determining what is right and what is wrong. In the Christian faith, we are supposed to sow and show goodness to everybody around, as emphasized in Galatians 5:22 (KSV). Through this work, we can value honesty by understanding the implications brought about by Oedipus’ rule, especially when he was forced to send Creon out of Thebes to the Oracle of Delphi. This section of the literature helps us understand the meaning of goodness when faced with difficulties by appreciating the actions taken by those in leadership for the common good of all people.
Accordingly, by examining the nature of the conflict between Oedipus Rex and Creon in their attempt to be heroes fighting for the people of Thebes, such a scenario is essential in helping to differentiate people’s intentions. In ‘Oedipus the King,’ for example, Creon says: ‘Citizens, I have come because I heard deadly words spread about me, that the king accuses me. I cannot take that from him’ (Sophocles 595). Creon’s utterance is essential for us as it provides an opportunity to analyze and compare them with the Kings’ to substantiate their positions before deciding on the path to follow. In the case of Creon, it could be possible that he is playing victim rather than being good, which is important in establishing a person’s intentions, whether they are good or bad. Therefore, in comparison with the Kings’ position, it is evident that valuing goodness mean appreciating someone who fights for the rights of his people. In the Bible, for instance, morality is supposed to be shown to others through actions. In Psalm 46:1 (NKJV), God expects Christians to remain kind and show goodness to others.
Secondly, understanding the truth means associating the literature in ‘Oedipus the King’ with the Christian faith. The literature allows us to reflect on what the Bible says about the truth. In the ‘Oedipus the King,’ does the truth sets one free? This question abounds, and the work of literature considers many instances requiring detailed analysis. The people are clueless about the reality. For a better understanding of the truth, we are supposed to stay away from associating with the people of Thebes’ views, which may trigger a rebellion against Oedipus, and how he admonishes his people that a murder can be let go, which is not the truth. Even the Bible expects people to have the ability to identify the truth (John 18:37, NKJV).
To better understand the truth, it is essential to consider Teiresias’ strong expression when he insists: ‘If you are king, at least I have the right no less to speak in my defense against you. Of that much I am master. I am no slave of yours’ (Sophocles 476).
His views give us leeway and an opportunity to determine what is at stake. We can understand the truth by acting differently than the people of Thebes, which means by appreciating divergent views. Teiresias knows the truth, an indication of why we should also listen to different opinions.
Additionally, the truth also allows forgiveness. This works us understand the strength brought about by the fact, as shown by Teiresias in ‘Oedipus the King’ as well as the emphasis in the Bible in Psalms 25:5. For instance, the truth prompts forgiveness in the manner that Oedipus did to Creon. At the same time, to better understand the truth, it is crucial to consider other people’s expression, especially when a person is hiding something from us for which they are also forced to appear guilty. Oedipus, for instance, when forced to talk about Teiresias’ position in his kingdom, appeared guilty when he questioned: ‘Who has taught you the truth?’ (Sophocles 405). At the same time, the cluelessness of the people should not be a reason to relent in questioning those in positions of power as Oedipus. A better understanding of the truth means questioning the information presented to us, as was the case with Teiresias. For example, after questioning Oedipus’ position, Teiresias quipped: ‘I have said what I came here to say not fearing your countenance; there is no way you can hurt me’ (Sophocles 525).
The work in ‘Oedipus the King’ helps us better recognize and appreciate beauty. It is evident that his fate determined Oedipus’ life. The ability to recognize and appreciate beauty in this work is found in questioning the various instances that placed the characters of adversity, as well as their ability to overcome them. For example, the beauty of Oedipus is in his ability to absolve himself from moral responsibility, while being regarded as a tragic hero after his fateful day. Teiresias appreciates Oedipus’ strive to stay afloat even when he was leading a clueless mass of people of Thebes. This was the case when he said that it is not fate that should be his ultimate ruin considering Apollo was already enough (Sophocles 435). This scenario demonstrates the beauty of understanding what is at stake. As for us, appreciating that the ultimate goal is critical in allowing events to pun out on their own, especially when it involves the lives of people.
At the same time, recognizing and appreciating beauty means we are supposed to consider fate and its long-term implications. For instance, there is a manner in which this section of the story in ‘Oedipus the King’ fascinate readers, in addition to how such characters as Teiresias and Creon contribute to and heightening the fate. Appreciating beauty, in this case, also means considering the everyday activities people engage in while awaiting fate. For example, by failing to make Oedipus appear evil implies beauty can be appreciated by valuing people, and not wishing them evil.
Although failing to make Oedipus appear evil means making it to the end, it is more tragic as it implies that beauty can occur at the beginning. This also means appreciating beauty once it surfaces before going down in a similar case like that involving Oedipus. From the play, Oedipus is presented as the ultimate beauty, more so when he championed for the rights of the people of Thebes. However, it was long before the virtue of his presence started to fade, making the end even more dramatic.
This work of literature also informs us of beauty in line with the Christian faith by considering the importance of free will. Having a free will aligns with the beliefs of the Christian faith, which appreciates the value of knowledge and truth. The beauty of having free will means knowledge should be present. In ‘Oedipus the King,’ appreciating beauty as demonstrated in Christianity. Aesthetics, in this case, is a dimension of humanity and their experiences, which presents what is beautiful. Therefore, like Tiresias in ‘Oedipus the King,’ taking part in everything beautiful is made up of what Christians consider as the core of religion and religious life. Additionally, the Christian faith emphasizes the need for all the socially essential views of beauty and aesthetics, which was evidenced by Oedipus in how he died a tragic hero. Appreciating others are encouraged by the Christian faith, more so when we are supposed to understand the beauty of humanity and everything good accompanying it.
Additionally, the importance of this literature in staying true to self, as emphasized by the Christian faith, is ensuring we leave a posthumous reputation, which means the legacy, like that of Oedipus, remains memorable to others. This implies that our actions should be associated with respectfully treating others by being human. At the same time, it will be essential to understanding that seeking normative standards in our lives should measure to the after-death reputation left behind for others to embrace.
In conclusion, the essay explored the work in the ‘Oedipus the King’ to determine how it helps us better value goodness, better recognize and appreciate beauty, and better understand the truth by examining these attributes from the perspective and expectation of the Christian faith. These human attributes were viewed as part of the Christian faith, which included using the Bible to understand some of the positions taken in the literature. Goodness, for instance, was observed through Oedipus actions towards the people of Thebes, while another character, Teiresias emphasized the truth. Again, beauty is associated with God as He considers His creation to be beautiful and, thus, should be appreciated.