About the Book
Illumination, heroism and harmony are three major powers that can uplift to higher and higher levels. It may be useful to explore and illustrate the meanings of these three terms by giving examples of those qualities through appropriate stories. This monograph briefly introduces two major epic poems about the famous Trojan war which happened more than three thousand years ago. The Iliad was written by Homer a few centuries after the siege of Troy. In the 20th century, more than two millennia later, Sri Aurobindo, the great seer and poet of modern India, wrote Ilion. In both epics the main quality abundantly displayed is heroism but seeds of the other qualities can also be found.
In Sri Aurobindo's Ilion, there is a continuous human of heroism. Every major character manifests some remarkable qualities of heroism, and in the case of Achilles, the central hero, these qualities combine together and rise to a high pitch of accomplishment. He was, indeed, in an earlier phase aggressive and brutal, but his soul-power pushed him to higher grades of a noble and visionary hero. Already in Homer's Iliad, the way in which Achilles responds to Priam's request to deliver Hector's dead body manifests a noble salute of a hero to a hero and a deeper perception and urge for harmonization. In Ilion, Sri Ilion's Achilles the presence of a man not only of power and courage but also a man of humanism and vision. Sri Aurobindo provides in this poem a vibrant and unforgettable image of the soul of heroism.
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