On Hope, via Hesiod…

Something to think about. From Hesiod’s Works and Days:

Hesiod, Works and Days 90-104:

???? ??? ??? ??????? ??? ????? ???? ???????? 90

?????? ???? ?? ????? ??? ???? ???????? ??????

?????? ?? ???????? ?? ?? ??????? ?????[1] ???????

[???? ??? ?? ???????? ?????? ????????????????][2] {= Od. 19.360}

???? ???? ???????? ????? ???? ???? ????????

????????q ?????????? ?? ??????? ????? ?????. 95

????? ?? ?????? ????? ?? ?????????? ????????

????? ?????? ????? ??? ????????, ???? ??????

??????q ??????? ??? ???????? ???? ??????

????????(?)[3] ??????? ???? ?????????????.

???? ?? ????? ????? ???? ????????? ????????? 100

????? ??? ??? ???? ?????, ????? ?? ????????

?????? ?? ??????????? ??? ?????, ?? ?? ??? ?????

????????? ??????? ???? ???????? ????????

????, ???? ????? ???????? ??????? ????.

For human tribes lived all over the earth before (Pandora arrived) 90

free of and far from evils, and far from hard pain

and from the wearying diseases that bring doom {Musäus: old age} to men;

[for mortals grow old quickly when suffering;]

but the woman took the great lid of (some) jar away with her hands

and dispersed it[4] {i.e., its contents}, and wrought grievous cares for humanity. 95

Elpis {= Expectation or Hope} alone there in the unbreakable construction

remained inside under the lip of the jar, and not to the outside

did fly; for first (the woman?)[5] closed the lid of the jar

by the will of aegis-bearing(?), cloud-gathering Zeus.

Otherwise, countless evils roam among humans; 100

for full is the earth of evils, and full is the sea;

diseases by night, and others by day, to humans

come and go of themselves, bringing evil to mortals

silently, since Zeus the counselor (had?)[6] removed their voices.

Notice that Hope was one of the evils which could be inflicted upon the world. It seems a good fortune that she (Elpis) didn’t make it out of Pandora’s jar originally. And yet, the US body politic has staked it’s wants on Hope. This should tell us something!

Another strong point from Hesiod:

vv. 498-500:

????? ?? ?????? ????, ?????? ??? ?????? ??????,

??????? ???????, ???? ??????????? ?????

????? ?? ??? ????? ?????????? ????? ???????.

Many an idling man, in attending empty elpides

while in need of sustenance, is speaking poorly to his heart;

Elpis is not a good companion for the man in need.

It should tell us something about the US that we have been rendered so weak that a great many of our citizens are basing their political decisions on Hope. I think it’s fair to say that we’re seeing how Hope is setting us up with each passing day of the Obama transition. It is better to be prepared for the worst, since it seems that’s what we’re in for.

Is the Pony/Pie/Hide rating system too cutsie?

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  1. It understood the greek letters up until I hit save.

    Grrrrrr….

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