Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Love Those Greek Writers?

“Men seemed to have failed completely tocomprehend the power of Eros, for if they did comprehend it, they would have built to him the greatest altars and temples and offered the greatest sacrifices, whereas he is given none of these honors, although he should have them most of all…”

From Aristophanes’ Speech in the Symposium

Could you use any of the myths we read about love to critique or support this quotation? Please react in writing.

28 comments:

ianm said...

You cannot simply build alters and temples and have sacrifices just because you admire this person. paying homage should be something done more out of love to prove how mush you love the person. to start to give them gifts you must first trust them and vice versa or else it will never work.

kbachel said...

In favor of this quotation there is Venus the most beautiful goddess and the divinity of love. For her there are temples and places of worship. In the tale of Cupid and Psyche, "her temples were neglected; her alters foul with cold ashes; her favorite towns deserted and falling in ruins."(121) The beauty of Psyche took away from her temples. I believe that love is one of the most cherishable and amazing thing that happens in life. There needs to places of worship for such a great part of life.

MollyK said...

By looking at the story of Cupid and Psyche, one would see that although many looked at Psyche as if she were a goddess, she had no temples or altars built for her as well. Even when she officially became a goddess by becoming immortal, she still has yet to have any altars or temples. Because of this, even though a god or goddess can be greatly powerful, sometimes that is neglected because of other circumstances. With Cupid, perhaps he has no temples or altars because people do not like his wife.

lisa s said...

In the story of Cupid and Psyche, temples arenot always used in homage, for Venus's temples were neglected for Psyche who was a mere mortal. However, in myths Eros is usually underestimated. With one of his arrows he had the power to make someone fall deeply in love with anything, making a fool of themselves in the process. For example Venus wanted him to make Psyche fall in love with a vile creature. I think that there should definitely be more recongnition for a "god" who could profoundly impact one's life.

MadisonF said...

In the story of Cupid and Psyche, Venus is the goddess in the story who is the most beautiful. She has alters and temples dedicated to her and her name, just like Eros in the quotation. But there is psyche, who is the most beautiful creature on earth. Venus is jealous of her and tried to get rid of her. In the story it shows that the human race is foolish. Just like in the quote, "Man seemed to have failed completely."In conclusion, Gods and Goddesses are great and powerful and worshiped by the people of Greece, but a human can always try to overcome them, but seem to always fail.

mallorym said...

This quotation can be supported by referring to the goddess Venus. She is jealous of Pysche's divine beauty, so she reacts like any human would, by trying to push Pysche away and be done with her. I feel that this realtes to the quote “Men seemed to have failed completely", because it demonstrates how jealousy and divinity can often alter our decisions.

bvon1301 said...

Man doesnt't need to build temples and alters to show how much they appreciate someone. Instead, trust and love means more than a building. Venus is jalous of Pyche's beauty and out of her human instincts, she tries to push her away.

JOSH P said...

to prove your feelings to another person you shouldnt have to build alters and temples for that person. But show your appriciation with love, and trust, and caring for that person.

BrittneyW said...

I think that the quote truly makes sense. For a god with so much power like Eros, no body gave him the praise the other gods recieved. For example in the story of Pyramus and Thisbe, love is the characters life and in the end they die for true love. It is the power over their lives. This power is one of the most important parts of humanity and you would think since it has so much importance we would celebrate one who creates it.

cadyd said...

Back when these stories were written, people believed that love happened for a reason and not simply because they liked one another, but beause the Gods had some role in it. By believing this, they would've have been scared of the power of love and in almost all of the stories, both lovers go to extremes for the other, bei it death or exiling themselves to a life committed completely to their lost love. It would have only made sense that they made great temples and places of worship to Eros to prevent these terrible things from happening but in their fright, they grew careless and edgy and so forsake those temples.

PatriciaC said...

I agree with JOSH P and bvon1301. Even though I sometimes like going to church I don't think it's necessary to go to church in order to gain god's favor. You can pray everywhere! So theoretically it's true: People didn't have to build temples and alters, but I guess the gods in greek mythology saw that differently, which shows how human-like they were. They wanted a temple where the people would worship them.
But is it certain that there were no temples for Eros? When did this man live (Aristophanes)? Maybe people looked at Eros a little differently than at the other gods. Maybe they thought they couldn't influence him anyway, so why build temple and all that stuff!?

rsinn_butnotfire said...

in favor of the quotation, it makes sense that the Greeks created temples and fiercely worshipped those Gods that they felt mattered to them most. Poseidon, God of the sea (Greeks were a coastal civilization) Demeter (Goddess of corn) Athena (Goddess of wisdom). Therefore it logically makes sense that if temples were not built and eros wasn't fiercely worshipped than the Greek men did not value his contributions in society. With this the social statues of women and romance can even be deduced in the culture of the Greeks.

DerekW said...

This quote makes me think of Cupid and Psyche, you might think that Psyche is a goddess and worthy of altars and temples but insead she has nothing. Even when she becomes immortal there is nothing in her honor. She has power but for some other unknown reasons there is nothing built for her. It could be that Cupid does not want others knowing he is married and where he lives.

brian h. said...

This quote reminds me of Baucis and Philemon. They were two love-sick people who helped people out even though they are poor. They deserved a temple because of their love for each other and because of their helpful attitude for others. But they were so poor that they did not have anything to offer the gods who came to their door. But they gave them food and shelter. Because of this the gods rewarded them by making them a castle and saying that they would die together. So when they died, they were turned into two separate trees that grew from one trunk. They deserved an altar and a temple because of their attitude, and they received something that lasts forever.

souimet said...

I don't think you need to build such special things to show love to someone. I think all you need to show someone love is to give them your all and to treat them as well as you can. Also it is based off honesty, respect, trust and loyalty. Those are the main things you need to show your love for someone. They don't need to be treated better than others jusst because they are in love.

souimet said...

I don't think you need to build such special things to show love to someone. I think all you need to show someone love is to give them your all and to treat them as well as you can. Also it is based off honesty, respect, trust and loyalty. Those are the main things you need to show your love for someone. They don't need to be treated better than others just because they are in love.

JennW said...

I agree with this quote completely. I believe that love is a great and wonderful experience in life and we take it for granted. Eros has so much power that is completely under estimated. He has the power to make people fall in love and he does not even have a temple or alter in his honor. In the story Pyramus and Thisbe died because their love for each other was too strong and they could not live without one another. If a god has the power to create something that powerful and special then they deserve a temple.

nathana said...

I think eros in a specific sense is overrated. If he is only the god of love in the form of romance then he is trivial. If love includes love of everyone in the manifestation of action then he is far an away one of the most important. Love in action encompasses everything that is good about humanity and is the ultimate cause.

Kayla's Blog said...

It is not easy for you to simply build alters and temples because if Eros was not a major greek god then he could not have temples and alters built for him. Eros was the god of love and he will always be the god of love not matter what and he had the effect of everybody of who had some kind of love effectin them.

raleigh j. said...

Sacrafices and tempels are for the most powerfull. If the greek started building tempels for just any god they would have lost sighnificance. that would have been the collapse of the Greek religon.

raleigh j. said...

Sacrafices and tempels are for the most powerfull. If the greek started building tempels for just any god they would have lost sighnificance. that would have been the collapse of the Greek religon.

raleigh j. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
MarissaM said...

Mmoorhead( I was absent so I am commenting now)

I agree a little bit on both sides. Love should be shown through more than materialistic things like alters and temples. I think that if he was so powerful and so wonderfull he should maybe have something but all of those things are a bit over bored. "It is a myth, not a mandate, a fable not a logic, and symbol rather than a reason by which men are moved." (Irwin Edman) This I think is a great quote for what I think. Eros being so powerful yet it is a fable, though men are moved my all of this yet should temples and alters be built over a story? Yet kelly has a point love is a cherishable thing in life and and there should be places of worship though should it be over one person, or thing? Eros- meaning love in greek, I think at the same time there should be an alter more for the meaning than for that one person/god.

A_Querry said...

I think if you love someone, you do not have to express it via money and altars. God, for example would be a example that all you have to do is pray to him. But, during the greeks time they thought that building temples to the gods would give them happiness and would make them love the people on earth.

kaitlinb. said...

The eight brief tales of lovers is example of how true this quotation. The greeks used the gods to explain everything they could not and love is one of the worlds biggest mysteries. Why love can make us feel so happy and so complete and why it can bring us so far down and be so sad. Why the god's did not try to avoid this and fing true beautiful love like the old couple is beyond me. They should have turned to Eros for all this in hopes they would be complete but they didn't. They did not value what love could be. They excepted the hurt and lose and did not try to get help.

BenE said...

Love should not be shown through material things, but rather through actions. In Cupid and Psyche, Venus tried to get rid of Psyche, but through these actions she showed that she admired her beauty and coveted that, and that is the ultimate form of flatery. While physical material things are nice, they dwell in comparison to the respect and love that are shown by our most human actions.

jer said...

For if they did comprehend it, they would have built to him the greatest alters and temples. this to me reminded me of cupid and psyche and love because love is something better than building temples and alters love is appreciation itself. When you love somebody you care for them also.

TWilson465 said...

i believe Eros the god of love, beauty, lust and fertility has been overlooked but also have a guess as to why. Although love can bring indescribable happiness it can also be heart wrenching. im sure many men prayed to Eros only to be left devastated and heart-broken when a woman whom they fell in love with did not share the same feelings which is why he was not praised and honored with temples and such. i do believe love and Eros have been overlooked but love is the source and downfall of so many in so many Greek legends that it simply does not cross ones mind to be honored or praised.