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Tag Archives: Gilgamesh
In a recent interview with Hugh Hewitt, Christopher Hitchens contrasts dying in a heroic cause with dying from a terminal disease (which, via Hitchens’s esophageal cancer, he may be doing): But it [dying in a good cause] avoids the boring thought that one is … Continue reading
“The Lord Bless Thee, and Keep Thee”: Did Leo Tolstoy, in 1902, Stumble Upon the Reason We Bless People Before Sending Them Off to War?
In Part 2 of the Gilgamesh Epic, the elders of the Mesopotamian city of Uruk send Gilgamesh on a journey to the Land of Cedars with this blessing: May Shamash [the sun god] give you your heart’s desire, may he let you see with … Continue reading
Mesopotamia’s Hillary Clinton: Bold and Cunning Ninsun, Gilgamesh’s Strong-Willed Mother, Argued with Her God, Manipulated Enkidu, Protected Her Son in His Going to War, and Got What She Wanted
How did ancient Mesopotamian women deal with their boys going off to war? Part 2 of the Gilgamesh Epic may give us some clues. Here we are introduced to Ninsun, Gilgamesh’s strong-willed mother. Ninsun systematically, and with a great deal of … Continue reading
In two places in Part 2 of the Epic of Gilgamesh, Shamash, the Sun God, and father of the Mesopotamian pantheon of gods, is described as one who puts desires in the hearts of men and women. Here is Gilgamesh, … Continue reading
In William Blake’s “The Marriage of Heaven and Hell,” on plate 9, there is this aphorism: The apple tree never asks the beech how he shall grow, nor the lion, the horse, how he shall take his prey. In other … Continue reading
Toward the beginning of Part 2 of the Gilgamesh Epic, Gilgamesh desires to go away from his Mesopotamian city of Uruk, to the far-off forested “Land of Cedars,” guarded by the fierce dragon Humbaba. This going out to the Land of Cedars … Continue reading
On an evening walk with my camara I saw a vintage, baby blue truck with a baby blue “Starry Night” sunscreen. It’s an odd combination: high art mass produced for casual visual consumption, and perhaps purchased at a museum store, contrasted … Continue reading