The Absurd Hero: The Myth of Sisyphus vs. Life is Beautiful Essay

            Just merely living it is much easier than having it defined then live with its definition. That is Life. Some may have it as a game that they play until it ends. Some may say it is a gift from “Above” that one has to take care of. Some may even say it’s a journey that ends with death. Others may say it’s a maze or a crossroad that one has to get through to have its meaning.

            Albert Camus presents his view of man living his life in the Myth of Sisyphus. The context of the story depicts that Camus belives Sisyphus to be an “Absurd Hero”. Absurd means being a positive thinker that he strongly believes to overpass his punishment and sees the meaning of life in what he does. According to Camus, “If this myth is tragic, that is because its hero is conscious” (“The Myth of Sisyphus”). Where would his torture be, indeed, if at every step the hope of succeeding upheld him?” He feels that being conscious, this absurd hero epitomizes the way people live their lives.

Most people would think they can actually survive the life they have and overcome the reality of pain and suffering this life I bringing them. Nevertheless, reality clearly points that all people would eventually die and in the event, the truth is, nothing is actually accomplished before it; no problem has been solved, no answers have been achieved through the many questions of man.  The act of Sisyphus rolling the massive stone up the hill which would eventually roll back down is supposedly a punishment for what he has done, yet he finds this meaningful. This is how people live their lives, hanging through false hopes and goals that would never be met. In reality, life for people on earth is a punishment.
In Life is Beautiful, Guido finds pride in what he does so as to save his son (“Life is Beautiful”). He lied about the reality of war, pain and suffering to his son so as not to let the latter feel what other citizens feel during the chaos (“Life is Beautiful”). He presented the war to his son in the form of a game which he thought would let his son live normally. However, by doing so, he only passes his hopeless goal to his son (“Life is Beautiful”). In reality, living a life in the situation of the war is futile since everything would eventually end worthless.

However, Guido, thought otherwise. He wanted his son to believe that life is worth living even in this kind of situation. He made his son believe that life is fun, exciting and is promising. He clouded his son’s vision of the reality so as post the falsity of life.

            On a more personal note, the context of The Myth of Sisyphus and Life is Beautiful is based on one realism, that of which is the Situation of World War II . During that time, one may ask, “Is life still worth living?”

Amidst the chaos, pain and suffering, no one would ever think that there is life to live for.  That is where Camus created the Myth of Sisyphus. Life for Camus is not predetermined.

However, for Guido, “All is well and Life is Beautiful.” He wanted his son to believe this that is why he blinded himself and his son from the real world. In the end, Camus died but his son and his wife lived, which others see to be a beautiful scene since Guido’s dream has been realized, seeing his sons and his wife live a beautiful life after the war. In like manner, all may see Sisyphus being happy, thinking that, “The struggle itself toward the heights is enough to fill a man’s heart.” Sisyphus finds the meaning of life in the pain and struggle he has to go through by doing what he does. This may be is the absurdity of life.

Is it life that is absurd or is how we view, and live life that is?

References:

“The Myth of Sisyphus.” Encyclopedia Britannica. 2009. Encyclopedia Britannica

Online. 22 Mar. 2009 http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/400997/The-Myth-of-Sisyphus

“Life Is Beautiful.” Infoplease. 22 Mar. 2009 <http://www.infoplease.com/ipea/A0767248.html>.