Maybe E was looking back to see if her daughters were following, and then inadvertently witnessed that destructive, divine power. Punished for simply witnessing.
The tendency to conceal our actions seems to be more important than justifying them. This behavior strengthens my belief that bearing witness may be one of the most powerful moral actions.
Avoiding public shame and fear of separation from the group has been ingrained in us since the beginning of humankind. The basic need to be accepted by others, purely for survival. Being cast out meant being left to die, and it is thought that this biological trigger is still present today.
In society, we cocoon ourselves, hoping that we aren’t singled out. We interfere in nothing out of fear of reprisal. We avert our eyes, and deny the moment.
Everyone screams “dastardly” and “cowardly”. Yet we’re equally dismissive both of people who try to hide their acts and people who avert their eyes. But I suspect things aren’t that simple. Maybe it’s about the way we choose to live, not about the results we wish to achieve.
The absolute pacifist may consider it unethical to use violence to help an innocent person who is being attacked and may be killed. Yet in thousands of years of fighting, we have failed to agree on the meaning of a just war.
The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species classifies Homo Sapiens as “LC – Least Concern” for extinction, only rivalled in their scale of world domination by ants.