"The Odessey": Athena.

Essay by BoristhebladeHigh School, 11th gradeA, November 2005

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"All men have need of the gods." (Homer) - In a sense, with this single quote, I believe that Homer summarizes his entire reasoning behind including the Greek gods and goddesses in "The Odyssey". Imagine living in another world and time, one where you were not only a god but could also shape shift. That is, you could take the form of any object or person that you chose. Athena, the daughter of Zeus has this ability. Of all the characters in the Odyssey, the most interesting to me is Athena. In my opinion, Homer uses Athena as an allusion, a prime example of ancient and modern day religion as a whole. The inclusion of Athena in "The Odyssey" signifies the importance of religion in daily life for Homer, and the supernatural characteristics that she posses seem to represent that no matter what shape or form of religion you practice, it is absolutely necessary for day to day survival.

Several characteristics make Athena especially stand out as a representative of all religion. The warrior goddess is a superior power that is always there to aid the human being; she is always guiding the main characters of "The Odyssey" in the right direction, bringing them godlike prophecies, and completing tasks in their favor.

The first quality about Athena which makes her seem to me as a

representative of religion as a whole, is that she is always guiding the main characters of "The Odyssey" in the right direction, often times doing so in a very inconspicuous, sneaky way. One example of such an action is when Athena makes Telemachos go to Pylos and Sparta. Athena says, "My advice to you is this, if you will let me advise you. Get the best ship...