Peopleare warned in different matters about the danger or damage of severalactivities, products and places. Despite this, there are individualswho do not care or do not use the information to prevent themselves.Everyone learns how to act and react to certain events, mostlythrough experience. On the Theban plays, the protagonist goes throughseveral tragedies because he was not able to listen to himself andbelieve on him. He decided to take for granted what the Oracles said.He did not reflect about his abilities, strengths and weaknesses toconclude if the predictions could really happen or not. People haveto stop accepting as true everything they hear or see on the news orby governors. They have to use the information for their benefit,just as Laius and Oedipus should have done.
Sophoclesexposed on his plays the level of corruption and the actions againsthumanity that people can achieve for power, fear, shame and guilty.The first event is seen when Laius, king of Thebes, asked one of hisservants to kill his baby boy, trying to prevent his death. He madethe decision to avoid having a son, because he listened to the Oracleconsidering the prophecy as a fact. Blinded by his selfishness he didnot contemplate other options to escape from his death nor reflectthat getting rib of his son increases the probability to accomplishthe Oracle’s prediction. He had the information about his death andinstead of using it to change his luck, he tried to avoid it.
Oedipusjust like his biological father Laius, tried to hide himself of whatit was predicted for him. But there was no better solution thanconfronting everything and not running away from the troubles.Oedipus became his father’s murder while he was evading it.Besides, he was found guilty of Laius king’s death while he waslooking for the assassin. Oedipus was accused by a blind man andduring this conversation it was clear the idea of a blind society.Both men make several references of what can they see. The old blindman said he can see more than the rest because he could see thereality. Oedipus had, once again, an opportunity to change asituation. But once again, he did not take the advantage. He seemedto be the blind man.
Now,society is not much different from this play. Oedipus life was a setof tragedies guided by the human fears and desire of power. TheOracles were like today’s means of communication. Many people, asOedipus, recognized as true everything they see, read or hear on thenews without investigate or having a second or a third point of view.People forget to listen to the most important person, themselves.Governments show through the communication media what they wantpeople to believe and know. They recognize information is power andthat is why they manage it. Oedipus and Laius did what they thoughtwas better for them in order to elude the Oracles’ predictions.Oedipus took his eyes out when knew the truth about himself and hislife. He could not see the world after his horrible reality. Afterthis, he had an inner sight of life and a wisdom formed bycalamities. And everything because he was guided by some prophecies,because he believed without questions anything.
Thosewith power do almost everything to keep that power. As Sophoclesrepresents in his plays, Laius tried to kill his son, Oedipus’ sonsdied fighting with each other and Creon act against his family.Nowadays, different countries administrations: start wars, lie tosociety and sells or buys if they do not attack first, importantterritories. Corruption is always involved in the situationsmentioned before, affecting people not related with them. Oedipuscould be seen as a victim of the dishonest actions from others orcan be seen as a coward man who decided to run away from unwantedcircumstances trying to be nice for others. Oedipus allowed othersdecide his destiny for him and accepted as real. Even when he go awayto escape from it, he quit to the control on his life believing theOracles.
Societyquits having the control on their lives when accept undesirable andcorruptive authorities and they agree to be ruled by them in themoment they do not investigate about it. Individuals used tocomplain, or not telling about corruptive behaviors and criticizeother people actions, but rising their voices against discriminatingand unfair actions takes time, effort and sometimes risks that manypeople are not willing to take, but as Kennedy said “asknot what your country can do for you — ask what you can do for yourcountry” [ CITATION Ind61 l 2058 ].Kennedy was expressing that as individuals each action can make bigdifference, but it is necessary to ask and answer oneself.Oedipus penalized himself for what he did even when he did not knowthe complete truth, not many leaders taught with the example likeOedipus. Sophocles asks everyone to really open the eyes and informeach other before open the mouths.
Independence Hall Association. John F. Kennedy`s Inaugural Adress. Inaugural Adress. Philadelphia, Pensylvania: ushistory.org, 1961.
Oedipus the King. Dir. Don Taylor. Perf. Michael Pennington and Claire Boom. 1986. online.
Sophocles. "Oedipus the King." Oedipus the King. Cambridge, England: Harvard University Press, 1912. PDF online.
SparkNotes editors. SparkNotes.com. 2002. 26 de July de 2016