Sight Vs. Blindness In Sophocles Oedipus The King

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Sometimes in life people can be “blind” to the truth. The answer to their question or solution to their worry or problem may have been obvious yet, they could not “see” the answer. Therefore, they were blind to the truth. This blindness is not one in a physical sense but another kind of sight or vision. In Sophocles’ writing, Tiresias is a blind prophet that presents the truth to King Oedipus. Tiresias reveals that Oedipus has been blind to the truth his whole life and when he finally does find the truth, he loses his physical vision. Due to the truth, Oedipus blinds himself. In this case, those who are blind ultimately do have a higher vision- the truth. The theme of sight versus blindness in Sophocles’ work Oedipus the King is portrayed through…show more content…
First, he was blind to the truth about his own life. Oedipus had no idea that his real parents were Laius and Jocasta, he was so blind that he got mad at anyone that would even suggest an idea such as that. As the story went on though, Oedipus could no longer run from the truth; he was forced to open his eyes to the reality and truth of his life. Oedipus killed his father and married his mother; he is the brother to his own kids and the son of his own mother. Oedipus was the one that was causing all of the downfall and bad times in Thebes. His hubris, pride, let the truth be seen as false or not be seen at all. Second, Oedipus was physically blind. His physical blindness played into the role of the Greek tragedy. The blindness completed the tragedy for Oedipus. Every Greek Tragedy is supposed to end with the main characters experiencing their own personal tragedy. This personal tragedy for Oedipus was discovering the truth and becoming blind because of it. It completed the prophecy that Oedipus had received from Tiresias, the blind prophet. Tiresias told Oedipus that he had come into Thebes with his sight but would leave Thebes without it. The physical blindness that Oedipus had also left him with wrongs of his life, with nothing to look at Oedipus was forced to think about his life, wrongdoings, and what had happened. Essentially he was forced to deal with it. The darkness that filled his eyes and the psychical pain he had inflicted…show more content…
Some would argue that pride and blindness to the truth have nothing to do with each other but the character and plot line of Oedipus in this story supports the argument that they very much are related with one another. Oedipus extracts a large amount of pride throughout most of the story. Oedipus thinking that he can control his fate reveals his pride. Oedipus believes that he can run away from his prophecy, no doubt that Oedipus is proud of the face that he does not desire to see the prophecy about himself fulfilled. Oedipus plays a god like role by thinking he can keep the terrible prophecy about his future from coming. Truly, Oedipus sets out to change his destiny. His self determination proves he has pride in himself and confidence that he can somehow change the future. When Oedipus killed his father he allowed his pride and arrogance to control him. He was thinking with his pride and did not use self control. This hubris that is instilled in Oedipus is a serious flaw of his. It is a flaw in a sense that it is ultimately the cause of the downfall of his life and every man around him. It led him to his death and caused the blindness of his life. It is the reason neither him nor any man will reach happiness until he is
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