After analyzing and describing Oedipus, the name that creates a worldwide “Ah…! Oedipus!” it is time now for the one for who Mikis Theodorakis wrote an opera, next to Medea and Elektra:
There is not just one “Antigone”. Maybe there was, in the beginning, so far back in the history of the mythology that we don’t know who started “writing” it, or “creating”. Far back in time a lot of stories were born in a circle of family, friends and others, just to entertain each other. People did not have internet, not a TV, not a cinema, and not a concert hall, and so… it started. After a long time people created other versions out of it. Among them is Euripides, and Sophocles, both Greeks, and well known, so well known that they changed the myth around and of Antigone into “Art”. As I wrote in my former post about “Antigone”: because of the Evil source of the drama (obviously Evil itself, an evil mind, at least) I do not want to consider it as Art. It should disappear into the rubbish. Are you shocked? Well, maybe it helps to read my two former posts to understand my wish.
Antigone, the meaning of the name
The name has been suggested to mean “opposed to motherhood”, “in place of a mother”. It may also mean “against men” since men were dominant in the Ancient Greek family structure, and Antigone clearly defied masculine authority, or “anti-generative”, from the root gonē, “that which generates” (related: gonos, “-gony”; seed, semen). That is what I found in wiki. But they say that you may have doubts about this.
Wiki is a wonderful source, and it is so interesting to see how many different explanations can be found in the different languages. The English version is a very complicated one. I searched therefore in the Dutch page and I found a very interesting text: “The motto of the play: to be happy you must act wisely/with common sense (but what is wise / common sense …) and not defy the gods (but what is defying the gods …). The central theme of the piece: the individual conscience versus state laws, the moral or divine law (ethos) versus human laws.
The story could have ended in a happy one if time would not have been a disturbing factor. The change in the way of thinking of the father of Haemon, the beloved of Antigone, reacted too late, arrived too late, “woke up” too late. Antigone had hanged herself already. Haemon tried to kill his father because his father had been the cause of this. It was impossible however to kill his father and therefore he killed himself by falling in his own sword.
The story ends with the message that when you defy the gods you can expect evil.
My message here: God, and if there is more than one god, (what I do not believe, because there is Oneness when you speak about God and Oneness cannot be in several gods), but let us say there are more, God/gods are love. They act out of Love. If not then it is not God but Evil, in disguise. God does not create any disaster, only human beings do, when listening to the voice of hatred, revenge, to all what is Evil or out of Evil, instead of listening to the voice of Love.
So, dear Sophocles, you did not understand the word God, or gods, not anything about true Love. I guess you had several new reincarnations to learn about Love and to become Love. To transform Evil into Love.
Those who could do that were Jesus Christ, Ghandi, Buddha, Nelson Mandela, Etty Hillesum, and so many more. But it is not so crowded where they are. It is much more crowded in hell: the place human beings created, and blaming “God” about it that they arrive there in the hereafter, in the life after death, or are in, because hell is also on earth. Heaven also by the way. They should blame Evil though. Evil rules the world. Evil exists. God exists. All people have a free will. The free will to chose for Evil is so much easier to obey than the free will to chose for Love. Love is beautiful, but so difficult to follow, to grow in, or to keep it as a constant factor. Love is just a word, for the most. All people take that word in their mouth while they do not have any idea about what Love really is and does. Like all treasures it is very difficult to find it and to take care for. It could be interesting to read about Gandhi, Jesus Christ, and for instance Etty Hillesum. It would also be interesting to read chapter 1, 13 of Saint Paul, written to the Corinthians (Greece): Hymn of Love / Ο ύμνος της αγάπης, and what has been used by the Polish composer Zbigniew Preisner, born in 1955: Song for the unification of Europe.
The dramatist Euripides also wrote a play called Antigone, which is lost, but some of the text was preserved by later writers and in passages in his Phoenissae. In Euripides, the calamity is averted by the intercession of Dionysus and is followed by the marriage of Antigone and Hæmon. Antigone also plays a role in Euripides extant play The Phoenician Women. (wiki)
I would have liked Euripides’ version! Such a pity that it got lost….. But, would it have made a difference? Too many people like the bad stories, thrillers, horror, evil.
The story of Antigone has been a popular subject for books, plays, and other work, in total about thirty. On that long list are some interesting names like: Carl Orff, Jean Anouilh, Bertolt Brecht, and of course Mikis Theodorakis.
Antigone, the opera (Mikis Theodorakis)
In the next post I will add information about the principle characters of the opera Antigone, and finishing the serial with a short interview with Zachos Terzakis, a great Greek opera singer (tenor), who performed the character of Haemon.
Antigone: I like her, but not her suicide
Antigone seems to me to be a very sympathic and empathic person. She has understood so much about life. She made good choices. Was aware of dignity, love and respect, responsibility. She had a good working consciousness. She got therefore the support of the choir (what is present, I guess, as a kind of a public opinion, or as the collective of universal consciousness). I pity it that she committed suicide (in Sophocles’ version). But I say this because I know (because I live in 2013) that many people have survived imprisonment, and have even found enlightenment IN prison. Antigone must have felt so desperate that she chose for suicide, to escape. But you cannot escape from pain, from what life brings.
In the time that mythological figures have been created people did not know so much about the consequences of committing suicide. In the present of today, the life in the hereafter is for many people a kind of a myth. But it is not a myth. It is a myth however that suicide creates solutions, or shows courage, and needless to say in fact that it should NOT be presented or explained as martyrdom.
In Greece’s mythology and even in the public Greek opinion of today suicide belongs to the brave and that belief has to be changed because it is a product of Evil, of an evil mind, an indoctrinated mind, a sick mind.
Suicide can never be a sacrifice, never be an honorable act. It is an escape to discover (too late) that a soul cannot be killed, and that the spiritual pain in the hereafter is indescribable. Suffering on earth is nothing compared with suffering in the hereafter. More in the link: Suicide prevention (scroll down to “sources”)
A good (evolutionary) book about suicide and its consequences, about how the suicide becomes a result of black astral forces from the hereafter (Evil), is”The Cycle of the Soul”. The link can be found in “sources” (scroll down). Also the film: “What dreams may come” (with Robin Williams) explains about the consequences of suicide.
I consider it as my task to add it here, because I hear about too many suicides, worldwide, but especially in Greece. Also Mikis Theodorakis has to realize the impact of suicide and has to take his responsibility for the bad consequences of spreading around his wrong opinion about suicide: he considers the man who committed suicide on Syntagma Square in 2012, as a martyr. Mikis: he is not a martyr. He is a coward, with the mask of a macho who goes beyond his borders of what is right to enforce changes in his country. What is the result? It has not any other effect than that the family and beloved ones will suffer because of this horrible act, this huge loss, as long they live. The man himself suffers in the hereafter. More suicides followed because of this example. It has to be stopped, by insight.
This message should be spread around, on schools and universities, in the media. Talk about it. With your friends, family, children. Read about it. Get informed.
Joseph Rulof, Dutch metaphysical writer (1898 – 1952) wrote:
…..that each human has a certain time to live. When someone commits suicide, they only lose day-consciousness. The silver cord does not break and the suicide remains in the material body. They then experience the body’s rotting. According to Rulof, this pain cannot be compared with any torture on earth. When the body is rotted completely and the skeleton becomes visible, the person walks in an empty world and only sees and hears themselves. When the actual time of death has come, the spirit goes back to the world of the unconscious, or it goes to one of the spheres. For example, when someone commits suicide at the age of 35, and that person had to become 85 years old, they must dwell in an empty world for 50 years. The book The Cycle of the Soul tells the story of Lantos and what he experiences when he commits suicide. More
Sources and additional information
- Wiki: Antigone
- Wiki: Antigone (Sophocles)
- Wiki: Antigone (film)
- Wiki: Antigone (Anouilh)
- Wiki: Antigone (Carl Orff)
- YouTube: Antigonae (Carl Orff) / full opera
- YouTube: My videocreation Hymn of Love
- Wiki: Saint Paul, Corinthians 1, 13
- Website: Zbigniew Preisner
- Blog about Antigone
- My post: Suicide prevention
- Book: The Cycle of the Soul
- Film: What dreams may come
- Wiki: Sophocles
- Wiki: Euripides
- Information about Etty Hillesum
- Information about Gandhi
Updated: 21 November 2015