Professor Ms. Alyse W. Jones
World Literature I - English 2111
October 7, 2012
The Universal Truths on ‘The Epic of Gilgamesh & The Hebrew Bible’
The Epic of Gilgamesh and The Hebrew Bible are considered by their audiences’ as two of the greatest literary works of ancient literature. The universal truths on The Epic of Gilgamesh and The Hebrew Bible, are most fundamental when viewed from both the contemporary and traditional audiences. Fundamentally, both audiences develop their own universal truths during the time in which the events transpired or by reading the scenic events from an anthology or other literary works.
Most importantly, both literary works have sought the attention of their perspective audiences by their ancient texts, which also brought about spiritual interpretations from a religious point of view. These ancient literatures were written and re-written by numerous ...view middle of the document...
In The Hebrew Bible, darkness and evil amongst the earth equated to death in God’s authority. God cleansed the earth by creating a huge flood, better known as The Great Flood. From a spiritual interpretation, God’s cleansing of the earth, also symbolizes rebirth.
As works of literature, there are viable lessons that are portrayed as literary art with characters being either teachers or students. The most identifiable lesson is the inevitability of death. For example, in The Epic of Gilgamesh, “A snake caught the scent of the plant, Stealthily it came up and carried the plant away, On its way back it shed its skin……etc…….For myself I have obtained no benefit, I have done a good deed for a reptile (Sec. 11, 307 – 317).” This excerpt conveys to its audience Gilgamesh’s thought process at the pinnacle of the story. We, as the audience, now realize that Gilgamesh has finally accepted that death is inevitable. The inevitability of death also played a major role in The Hebrew Bible. For example, “And the woman said, ‘The serpent beguiled me and I ate, etc…….And to the human He said, for dust you are and to dust shall you return’ (Genesis – Sec. 3, pg. 160 – 161).” As a result of mankind’s disobedience to God’s authority, the human population was cursed with the inevitability of death for all generations.
There will always be philosophical interpretations that will create universal truths for many generations to come. In addition, these literary works enriches the audiences’ understanding of these texts as supremely important cultural and historical documents, for audiences who embrace their universal truths. Both generational audiences’ spiritual interpretations seemed to have, collectively, developed a text of extraordinary literary works that are overflowing with philosophical and truth-seeking richness.
“The Epic of Gilgamesh.” The Norton Anthology World Literature: Vol. A.” Ed. Martin Puchner, et al. New York, USA: W.W. Norton & Company, 2012. 108-15. Print.
“The Hebrew Bible.” The Norton Anthology World Literature: Vol. A.” Ed. Martin Puchner, et al. New York, USA: W.W. Norton & Company, 2012. 151-63. Print.