Final Thoughts

It is easy to personally identify with the struggle of a gladiator. Although the tradition has fallen from favor, it is the subject of rich imagination and interest for many. Through the process of my research, I have tried to put myself into the role of a gladiator. Ultimately I have come up short, the closest modern appropriation we have is football players, mixed martial arts fighters or bull fighters which is limited to a small percentage of the population. Although these sports still entertain a huge collection of people, overall our society has shifted our praise towards the intellectual pursuits.
I believe we live in a gladiatorial society, although the games have ended, we all compete viciously for a slice of the pie. Some people exhaust their physical and mental prowess to ultimately have the door slammed shut in their face. I don’t see any other reason why a free man would give up his ordinary existence for the chance for glory in the arena. Obviously after the novelty of comfort wears off and the ego subsides, many men are left looking for validation. There is either a chance to achieve glory or death. Some would rather this over living a marginal existence on the sideline.
A popular phrase, the whole world is a stage, is particularly fitting in this context.

While as a society, we work to build up our own lives behind the scenes, a contemporary arena exists for those wishing for their lives to play out in glory. Whether it is in the form of moving a football forward one hundred yards, fighting on a reality television show, fighting in war or dying in infamy. For most, ordinary life is fulfilling and safe. For those not satisfied, our modern day voyeuristic society supports their drama. There are 7 billion people on this Earth, and technology has led to our entire globalization. The moment someone decides to standout into the pressure cooker, their glory or fall from grace will be documented, debated and highly conversed.

While as a society, we work to build up our own lives behind the scenes, a contemporary arena exists for those wishing for their lives to play out in glory. Whether it is in the form of moving a football forward one hundred yards, fighting on a reality television show, fighting in war or dying in infamy. For most, ordinary life is fulfilling and safe. For those not satisfied, our modern day voyeuristic society supports their drama. There are 7 billion people on this Earth, and technology has led to our entire globalization. The moment someone decides to standout into the pressure cooker, their glory or fall from grace will be documented, debated and highly conversed.

Our society is one giant coliseum, although we choose to stay anonymous, we all are spectators. We have become desensitized to violence through all forms of popular media, yet try to act shocked at the new breaking story. People observe other people’s problems to feel better about their own. All this adds up to become a predator culture.
Even through the pursuit of educational accomplishment, individuals face harsh competition. The legitimacy of one diploma is slashed by the strength of another’s. While one person is inadequate to answer a question on Jeopardy, another laughs at their opponents insufficiency. As we move away from physical strength to brain power, academia may become the most savage of all arenas.

Years down the road, we all find our self’s on the sideline jealous of the perceived glory in the arena. Life loses meaning without a fight bigger than us, whether or not the sacrifice has a solid foundation at all. This driving force to continue the construction of civilization through personal contribution may be applied to describe events through human history. I believe that the gladiatorial games were a reflection of humanity’s flaw that is still recurrent, despite how advanced we believe our species to be.

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