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Monday, August 22, 2016

M3 Apollo's Nature

            Artemis’s baby brother Apollo has his own particular issues when it comes to Zeus. Whereas Artemis is trying to slam on the brakes to forever remain Zeus’s little girl, Apollo is trying to step up. He wants to be just like dear old dad. He does this by being a Jack-Of-All-Trades. Whereas most gods have one or two areas in which they are the absolute master, Apollo spreads out with a variety of different domains in his godly portfolio.
            Like Artemis, he was born prematurely—two months premature, according to the myth—but he grew up swiftly. On day four he got his bow and arrows, and with it, he commenced to hunt down the Python. As discussed earlier, Hera sent the Python to chase Leto, Apollo’s mother. So Apollo got some payback on her behalf. He tracked it and dispatched it.
            Besides hunting, Apollo is the god of poetry and music, but he was not born to this. Instead, he competed with Pan to win this title. This in itself is significant as it shows off his very competitive nature. Before besting Pan at music, he got the old goat (pun intended) to give up the secret of prophecy to him, a trait he shares with Zeus (and Hera).
            Prior to besting Pan at the flute, he challenged a mortal to a contest, who bore a flute Athena had made The Muses sat in judgement, and were impressed equally by both performances, but Apollo is competitive to a fault. He must win the game, even if he must cheat to do it. He challenges his opponent Marsyas to reverse his flute and simultaneously sing, which obviously can’t be done with this instrument. However, Apollo’s instrument is stringed, a lyre, so he can both play it reversed and sing quite skillfully with no difficulty. And, in true godlike fashion, he punishes Marsyas by flaying him alive, and nailing his skin to a tree. Unlike other gods who punish those who defeat them, Apollo is a very sore winner, even after cheating to get his victory.

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