Essay on Good vs Evil in Beowulf
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In Beowulf, the clash between good and evil is the poem's main and most significant focal point. Although the epic poem Beowulf utilizes many characteristics of Christian themes, the violence in the poem relates to paganism. By exploring the characteristics of “good vs. evil” such as Cain, Grendel and Beowulf, this paper will explore the elements of Beowulf in such a light.
The Anglo-Saxon poem, Beowulf, was originally told orally then later was written down anonymously in the Old English language. It is not known who or whom wrote this poem down. What we do know is that Beowulf is the oldest surviving epic poem of the English language; the original has suffered irreparable damage in a fire. “The poem dates back to 1000 AD”…show more content…
Beowulf represents all of those values. The story starts with King Hrothgar of the Danes celebrating his region by building a bar called Heorot. He holds a feast there; the loud music and laughter makes Grendel attack the hall at night. The bloodshed and loss of warriors lasts twelve years. Word spreads of Grendel’s attack to the Geats. Beowulf decides to help them. Beowulf and his men arrive to help the Danes. They wait for Grendel to attack Heorot, when he does, Beowulf tears Grendel’s arm from the socket. Grendel runs to his lair where he dies. Grendel’s arm is nailed to the wall in Heorot. Grendel’s mother comes to the hall for revenge of her son. Beowulf goes to defeat her at her lair at the bottom of the lake where Grendel’s mother is waiting to attack. They battle but Beowulf’s sword cannot hurt her; he finds another sword near by which slices her head off. He then goes to find the dead Grendel to cut off his head as a trophy. Everyone is waiting at the surface of the lake and because it is taking such a long time that they have gave up hope. Beowulf comes up victorious and with treasures; they all celebrate. Beowulf returns to his home, fifteen years later a fire-breathing dragon is terrorizing the Geats. Beowulf being the hero that he is goes to fight the dragon. The arm that he brings runs in fear except Wiglaf. They battle the dragon; the dragon was beheaded. During the battle, Beowulf had been bitten and later dies from the poisonous venom
I wrote this essay in hopes to understand if Evil really exist. What I end up coming to the conclusion is that both good and evil do not exist and that we just believe it does. Since we all have common opinions of what we think is bad and what we think is good we let that maifest into Good and Evil.Wonder fills her eyes as she watches the windows of creativity float above her, reflecting her smiles, laughs, and excitement that sits in the bubbles that float over the nothingness that is the skies. As she sits in the grass, her mind unfolds her world as she enters her own land of imagination. Her youthful glow and her expanding mind adds color to her world. She is Good, however she is also Evil.
One conversation that has no end with different variables that continues to be added along with definitions that continue to change is the battle of “Good versus Evil”. The idea of Good and Evil holds many controversial issues and resonates from our religion and what we are taught at home. However, many people don’t know what Evil actually is and find it unclear. Many religions believe that Good people have Good things happen to them and because of Evil, bad things happen to the Good people. They are fed the idea that Good and Evil is always balanced, but people argue that Evil rises over Good in their lives. The one thing that is known but many will not believe is Evil does not exist and neither does Good. Evil is an empty word and Good people can be perpetrators of Evil.
In the TED Talk, “The Psychology of Evil”, Philip Zimbardo says “The line between Good and Evil to the privileged, is fixed but movable.” An excellent example of this is murder. If a human murders another human, it is considered Evil. Somehow the small difference in scenarios can erases Evil. The line between Good and Evil can was be moved in the minds of those who are observing only one of the acts as Evil. If a man murders another man, the murderer is considered Evil. When a man is put on trial and gets the death sentence, the officer that pulls the switch to the electric chair is a murderer, but because it's his job and the man getting the death sentence is considered Evil, the act by the officer is somehow Good. An officer of the law that acts as the executioner for a death sentence is the same job of a hitman. A hitman’s job is to kill anyone that a consumer wishes to to perish. Many would say that what a hitman does makes him Evil. What makes it Evil? If a hitman kills a rapist or another murder, is is still considered just as Evil as the hitman killing someone that a consumer just do not like? The judge that sentenced the convicted man to a death sentence simply had an alternate choice to to send the murder to jail, however because he wishes for the man to perish he sends him to his death. The officer that does the deed is hired to do so, the officer is a hitman. The two men in the scenario are doing the same Evil deed but only one is considered Evil. Evil is just the opinion that resonates from your morales implanted by the way you were raised. Good is what you prefer and Evil is what you don’t prefer.
In the essay, “The problem of Evil”, Jeff Speaks says “God is omnipotent; God is wholly Good; and yet Evil exists. There seems to be some contradiction between these three propositions, so that if any two of them were true the third would be false. But at the same time all three are essential parts of most theological positions: the theologian, it seems, at once must and cannot consistently adhere to all three… A related idea is that Evil is necessary as a means to bringing about Goodness. The basic idea here is that God uses Evil to bring about Goodness, in much the way that we find that we often have to do something painful, like going to the dentist, to bring about some desirable end, like fixing a cavity.” Evil is what shows Good and Good shows what is Evil , without both, society can crumble and go out of control. Without Good there is chaos. Without Evil there is chaos. Balance is key. Ying can not live without Yang, and Yang cannot live without Ying. The subconscious idea layered in your brain, Evil, is completely and utterly relative. Evil only exist because we exist and and we let the idea manifest. The world and reality itself is neutral. The meaning of Good and Evil does not exist anywhere but our minds. Philosophers try to explore what Good and Evil is and it always relates back to religion, mainly back to the scripture of the bible, “Ezekiel”. They say that God is the all Go and that he created Evil and Hell. He was the one who put one and two together by putting the Evil in his own domain of Hell. God could have locked the domain to ensure that all of his neutral creations do not get influenced by Lucifer. God left it open and instead of it being a place to keep all Evil in as a prison, Hell became a security and shelter for Evil. God supposedly allows for Lucifer to walk the earth and along with his followers to influence the Good and turn them Evil. God supposedly created everyone and everything. People of the Christian faith were told that he created Lucifer and Lucifer was his favorite angel. I believe he was his favorite angel because at the time, there was no Evil, and God wanted to use Lucifer to change that. Good and Evil at the time was supposedly turned and favored on the Good side because there was no opponent. Therefore, there was no Good because there was no Evil to complete the definition. Lucifer “turned” on God. God is all Good and all knowing, so of course he knew of this was going to happen when he first created him. I believe God created Lucifer because he needed Evil. He gave Lucifer free will but just like everyone else, it was already programed in his brain of what Evil is. God created him with the intention of becoming Evil. By the power of free will, Lucifer was able to do what god wanted him to do.
In a Bible study scripture Lucifer's Rebellion, “Evil did not originate on planet earth. Before God created earth, he had already populated the universe with other rational beings. The Bible calls these beings "angels," and names several different orders. Angels have often been made to appear as fantasy by those seeking to discredit their existence… The angels, like mankind, were created with free will, and were subject to the same conditions regarding their eternal life. The most prominent of these chose to rebel against God. In order to understand the conditions in which we live today, we need to understand this angel and how he came to rebel against God.” Reality cannot be neutral without two sides for it to stand in the middle. So if Good and Evil does exist, which is completely possible since it's all a matter of opinion; Reality holds the scale that Good and Evil balance on. If one of the components are gone then the whole scale does not exist. God needed Evil for Good to exist and since Evil was created by Good, Evil cannot exist without Good. Reality is the free will of the life. The scale acts as a bridge to challenge free will. There is nothing stopping one that is Good from becoming Evil; and one that is Evil from becoming Good. So the question lies, will you become Good or will you become Evil?