Love In The Epic Of Gilgamesh And Genesis

1222 words - 5 pages

At an early point in history, The Epic of Gilgamesh and the story of Genesis were two texts that set the framework of the entire world. They were two epics that established the foundations of religion, literature, and all other standards that were followed by every category of people. Both texts entice the audience through antique language, and the stories of epic heroes and immortal gods. Sin-Leqi-Unninni and the many writers of the Bible use love as their central theme, yet it unfolds as having distinguishing effects on all characters throughout both texts. In The Epic of Gilgamesh, the author conveys love as a motivational factor for helping Gilgamesh and other characters transition into better individuals, whereas in the Old Testament, individuals do harm upon others in the name of love in order to follow what is morally correct based on the religious standard.
In The Epic of Gilgamesh, Sin-Leqi Unninni does a magnificent job in conveying how all figures are inspired by the act of love. Enkindu is evidence of someone being manipulated and easily convinced by love. His love for the temple prostitute leads him to fall for the temptations that Uruk provides, and instigates his first experience of initial hate for Gilgamesh. Despite striking him with a feeling of hate, the love for the temple prostitute gives Enkindu the willpower to walk into Uruk and challenge Gilgamesh for power over the town. After competing on the Uruk battleground, the two gigantic men forget their desire for power but rather get entangled in a twisted erotic love. It is through their love that they aspire to beat Humbaba, god of the cedar forest. Enkindu provokes Gilgamesh to transition from a selfish and power-driven figure, to a more enlightened and sensitive one. Ultimately, when Enkindu falls ill and dies, Gilgamesh cannot surpass the misery of still loving his brother and lover, “I will cause all the people of Uruk to weep over you and raise the dirge of dead. The joyful people will stoop with sorrow; and when you have gone to the earth I will let my hair grow for your sake, I will wander through the wilderness in the skin of a lion” (Unninni 95). He stays with him until his body starts to diminish, and later finds himself searching for immortality. Gilgamesh goes on a journey challenging the gods of the underworld searching for his immortality and a chance to see Enkindu. At the start of the text Gilgamesh was empowered by the acts of raping the towns women and belittling men, nevertheless, Enkindu is the figure that actually contests Gilgamesh for his power. It is through Enkindu that he realizes how precious humanity can be. Whether it is a homosexual or brotherly love, Gilgamesh falls in love with the man in Enkindu that helps him transpire into a greater human being. This quote reveals the first time that Gilgamesh makes a sacrifice in the name of love. In The Epic of Gilgamesh, Leqi Unninni conveys through his writing that the account of...

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