Author: Jan Scholten
2.7.9 Stage 9, Europium: Calypso
After 9 days Odysseus washes ashore on the island Ogygia. The beautiful nymph Calypso lives on this island with its beautiful and rich flora and fauna. Calypso is eternally young, cheerful and always has a song on her lips. Calypso receives Odysseus with love and promises him immortality if he will stay with her. With sweetness she tries to encourage Odysseus to forget Ithaca and Penelope. After a while Calypso cannot pleasure Odysseus anymore. Odysseus longs for home, staring at the beach and over the sea. He stays there for 7 years, which is a revenge of Poseidon for the blinding of the Cyclops.
Then Athena pleads with Zeus to let Odysseus go home. Zeus sends Hermes to Calypso with the message to let him go. At first Calypso doesn't want to let him go, but the will of Zeus cannot be denied. Calypso says to Odysseus that he can go, but as she has no ship he has to build a raft himself. 5 days later he leaves and travels for 18 days coming to the island of the Phaiaks. Just before reaching it Poseidon discovers Odysseus and in his revenge brews a storm. The raft loses its sail and rudder and Odysseus is again adrift and is in danger of getting lost. Then the water nymph Ino Leucothea surfaces and tells Odysseus that Poseidon cannot kill him. She gives him her head scarf that takes away the fear of disaster and death and says that he has to bind it around his chest and jump naked into the water. For 2 days Odysseus floats in the water before reaching the coast. He narrowly escapes the sharp rocks of the coast and with the help of Athena is able to come ashore on the banks of a river.
In this part of the story we see the theme of approval. Odysseus has to wait till the Gods give him approval to go on. This theme is repeated in the surrender of Odysseus to the waters. He's completely naked, without ship or raft.
Odyssues has almost reached his goal. Almost is typical for Stage 9.
Calypso is symbolic for the known world, which is typical of the theme of understanding of Europium.