Riddle of the Sphinx: The cat always knows

Day 24: Thursday

Morning, Tim!

First things first, I have some highly relevant news for you. In order to better curate cat photos and marinate on cat pun opportunities, I got a cat! Now, Tim, I know just what you might be thinking

WHAT?! YOU GOT A CAT JUST FOR THIS BLOG?!

Of course the answer is YES. Tim this level of humor takes dedication and time commitment. Of course next up will be continuing to grow my unique collection of spoons in order to build out unusual uses for them (we really should start a singular blog that captures that theme collectively…), but that’s for another time. So without further ado, I introduce you to Sophocles (who, coincidentally is a female cat and therefore goes by nicknames of Sophie and or Soph [long ‘o’ on both])

IMG_0933.jpeg

Now I said at the beginning this is highly relevant because your question to me was about something she knows intimately.

You see, contrary to what you have suggested

No one can say for certain exactly what it was that the Sphinx asked Oedipus.

I think Sophocles knows because…well…(s)he crafted the story. So when you pose to me this challenge, this enigma:

Do you believe in sphinxes?

Of course I do. Seeing as I have the expert on matters relating to Oedipus and the Sphinx, I have it on good authority that sphinxes exist, and therefore I believe in them.

What I mean, of course, is that there are enigmas that challenge each of us. These enigmas, if we do not wrestle with and find a way to resolve them, can devour us. We spend our lives finding meaning — perhaps in the beauty around us, or capturing inspiring sounds and music. We find meaning in families, religion, helping others through volunteering or perhaps our careers.

Other of life’s puzzles deal not with finding meaning but rather making meaning of what’s been given. Failed attempts at humor, a plethora of other “why me” moments, or perhaps something more serious like a lost job in a changing world.

One way to find answers, to start to understand how to approach these puzzles is to read. Perhaps it’s Sophocles and an ancient play about a patricidal, incestuous, eye-gouging king or, hopefully in my case, something more instructive about how great thinkers discovered and understood (and, taken further and more interestingly, the societal implications of the discovery) of the gene. Whatever it is, there is a keen responsibility to read carefully, to think diligently.

But a reader, in the fullest sense of the word, is someone who assumes that a text contains hidden treasures worth searching for, someone who tries to uncover […]

Reading helps us understand how to think about and address our own enigmas.

Man I love reading.

Until tomorrow,

Zak

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6 thoughts on “Riddle of the Sphinx: The cat always knows

  1. “I think Sophocles knows because…well…(s)he crafted the story.”
    I’m sorry, but I have to say it. You were too satisfied with yourself…
    Sophocles didn’t “craft” the story of Oedipus. It’s a myth that comes to us from many different sources, most of them predating the play-write renowned for his wisdom.
    Incidentally, the riddle of the Sphinx, while alluded to, is not recorded in Oedipus Tyrannos. So, no. In no sense does your cat know the riddle of the Sphinx. Nice try.

    Like

    • Sophocles did craft the story — no scare quotes needed. Authored the play, crafted the tale, etc. Entirely make up the story? Nah.

      Also, it seems evident from the Greek that Sophocles knew the riddle, alluded to it, and so if the reader knew great (otherwise…the riddle was a riddle…)

      Finally, I discussed the riddle of the Sphinx with Sophocles while writing this…so…she could know it…

      Rats. I was pleased with myself.

      Liked by 1 person

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