6 Greek Commandments
1. Never refuse a service to a worthy figure.
DO: “On thrones she seated them, and lounging chairs, while she prepared a meal of cheese and barley and amber honey and mixed with pramnian wine." (918). Circe shows the utmost hospitality towards these wandering heroes.
DO NOT: Expressing inhospitable behavior is a sign of savagery as the Cyclops in book 9 had exemplified through refusing to serve Odysseus and his men.
2. One must stay loyal and never turn his/her back on his/her family and/or peers.
DO: “I drove them, all three wailing, to the ships. Tied them down under their rowing benches…” (pg. 898). When Odysseus's men were under the control of the lotus flowers, he chose to not abandon them, but rather dragged them back to his ship.
DO NOT: “I entered Circe’s bed of love.” (pg. 921). One of Odysseus's few faults was giving in to lust and being disloyal to his marriage to Penelope.
3. One must respect and obey authority.
DO: Odysseus obeyed Calypso’s instructions to visit the underworld before returning home. Through doing this, he was able to gain wisdom and avoid future conflicts after hearing the prophecy.
DO NOT: “Driven by hunger, they ignore Odysseus’s warning not to feast on Helios’s cattle.” (pg.937). Odysseus's men disrespected Odysseus's warning to not touch the cattle of the island, which eventually led to their deaths.
4. Worship and respect the gods, but also fear their wrath.
DO: Odysseus, by warning his men not to eat the cattle, portrays his respect for Helios the Sun God. Not choosing to disobey the gods eventually allows his to avoid death by Zeus's thunderbolt.
DO NOT: Odysseus's men, on the other hand, chose to disrespect the gods and eat Helios's cattle, leading to their deaths.
5. Maintain a healthy and strong physical appearance.
DO: Odysseus’s strong and fit body was what allowed him to face and defeat adversity. This was exemplified when he hung on the tree hanging over the Charybdis.
DO NOT: The Cyclops depicted a savage and gluttonous being by overeating and maintaining a fat physique.
6. Refrain from foolish or unwise activity, one should use their wits when addressing a situation.
DO: “Cyclops, try some wine. Here’s liquor to wash down your scraps of men.” (920). Odysseus used his wit to outsmart the Cyclops.
DO NOT: When the Cyclops fell for Odysseus’s blatant lie about his name being “Nohbdy,” he exemplified foolishness and a lack of intellect.