.The Marriage of Cupid and Psyche (1756) / 丘比特與普賽克之婚.
No one would be unfamiliar with Cupid, the little god of love. Nowadays, he and his arrows are the most popular of love signs. And he has always played a role in the celebration of love and lovers. In ancient Greece he was known as Eros, the young son of Aphrodite, the goddess of love and beauty. To the Romans he was Cupid, and his motherwas Venus.
In Greek mythology, Psyche was the deification of the human soul. She was portrayed in ancient mosaics as a goddess with butterfly wings, because psyche is also the Greek word for 'butterfly'. The Greek word psyche literally means "spirit, breath, life or animating force".
There is a very wonderful and interesting love story about Cupid and Psyche. Before she became a goddess, Psyche was the youngest daughter of the king and queen of Sicily, and the most beautiful person on the island. Venus was jealous of the beauty of Psyche, and ordered Cupid to punish her. But instead, Cupid fell deeply in love with her. He took her as his wife, but as a mortal she was forbidden to look at him. However, Psyche’s jealous sisters were angered by her wealth and love, and persuaded her to kill Cupid. As soon as Psyche looked at Cupid, Cupid awoke and felt very angry about her. He was wounded and left her. As she tried to find her love, she came upon the temple of Venus. Wishing to destroy her, the goddess of love gave Psyche a series of tasks, each is harder and more dangerous than the last, but luckily, in each case there would be a God assisting her. For her last task, her temptation and curiosity made her in trouble again, she was attacked by an infernal sleep.Cupid found her lifeless on the ground. He gathered the deadly sleep from her body and put it back in the box. Cupid forgave her, as did Venus. The gods, moved by Psyche's love for Cupid, made her a goddess. Finally Psyche and Cupid were allowed to be married. They were very happy together, and had a child, named Pleasure.
Greek mythology is always thought-provoking. Actually, this story contains many meanings. For one point, inner beauty trumps outer beauty. Beauty doesn’t always mean good to a woman. For Psyche, her beauty gave her no pleasure, but separated her from others. Her father, unable to find a suitor for her, took the oracle’s advice and left her on the mountain top alone. Besides, Venus was jealous of her beauty so she asked her son Cupid to punish her. At the end of the story, because she wanted to become more beautiful, she opened the beauty box. However, she found nothing but deadly slumber. I can’t say that beauty means no good to a woman, but a woman shouldn’t pay too much attention to the beauty. To be an attractive woman, profound knowledge as well as courage is needed.
Furthermore, this story also taught us that jealousy can never win. Venus and Psyche’s two sisters’ jealousy and envy brought sorrow to not only Psyche and Cupid but also to themselves. Psyche and Cupid were compelled to break up. Venus was jealous of Psyche’s beauty, so she did many bad things and she lost her son at last. Psyche’s two sisters were jealous of her wealth, they persuaded her to kill her husband. As a result, what they did made them lose everything, even their lives. From their tragic endings, we can learn that when you are jealous and try to destroy others, you will lose more.
Their experience also means that when you fall in love with one, you may always forgive even though he or she hurts you. You never stop loving your soul mate. So, bring cupid into your life and try to love someone who really knows you.
Writer: Chen Yingzhu