Siddhartha Essay, Research Paper
Siddhartha by Herman Hesse, is about a young man who is in search of the meaning of life; which is reaching Nirvana. Everywhere he goes he doesn t find what he is looking for so he moves on to the next place. He eventually reaches nirvana. Siddhartha goes through many things. In 3 chapters: Kamala, By the River and The Son Siddhartha starts getting closer to his goal, Nirvana
The chapter Awakening shows how Siddhartha is developing toward his goal of enlightenment. In several parts of the chapter, he said that he has felt as though something left him; his youth. On page 37, line 13, Siddhartha talked about what he felt when he left the Buddha, He realized that he was no longer a youth; he was now a man. He realized that something had left him, like the old skin a snake sheds. Something was no longer in him, something that had accompanied him right through his youth and was part of him: this was the desire to have teachers and to listen to their teachings. After he left the Buddha, who was the best teacher he could ask for, he knew that if he couldn t benefit from the Buddha than he couldn t benefit from anybody. The name of the chapter is actually very relevant because he is indeed awakened. The world has become a whole new place for him and his views of it were changed entirety. On page 39, paragraph 3, he says that the world through his eyes has changed, He looked around as if seeing the world for the first time. The world was beautiful, strange and mysterious. He has hit a milestone in his quest for salvation, because he is seeing the world for the first time in the way that he will when he achieves Nirvana.
Siddhartha looked for answers in all the wrong places. He left his home in search for inner peace. He thought that if he left home it would be able to find an answer to how to be at one with himself. He got so tired of looking for the answers in all the wrong places that he wished harm to himself. He bent, with closed eyes… towards death. (p.89)
Siddhartha felt like he was no longer Siddhartha, the Bramin s son, and he also felt like he was no longer human, but…
Then from a remote part of his soul, from the past of his tired life, he heard a sound. It was one word, one syllable, which without thinking he spoke indistinctly, the ancient beginning and end of all Bramin prayers, the holy Om, which had meaning to the perfect one or perfection .(page 89)
By the end of that chapter Siddhartha starts to realize that the truth that he was looking for was in him from the beginning.
In the chapter Kamala , Siddhartha has his first encounter with love. At that point he doesn t know what it is, but is curious and feels it is something that is essential to him in his journey. Love is something that isn t a material object that we can hold and feel like a gold bar which is something that us humans lust. We have learned that Siddhartha doesn t like material objects like gold bars or nice clothes that regular people enjoy. Because many humans thrive on love, and it can never be taken away like a shiny pair of shoes can, Siddhartha feels it is something he should figure out.
In the chapter The Son , Siddhartha finally discovers a brotherly love in his friend Vasudeva. The last paragraph of page 127 which is the last page of the chapter, Siddhartha finds the love in his friend without even noticing it himself, He rose and greeted Vasudeva, who had followed him. When he saw Vasudeva s kind face, looked at his little laughter wrinkles, into his bright eyes he smiled also.
Driven by curiosity and discontent, Siddhartha walked the long and strenuous road in finding inner peace. He completed this trip unlike many before him, because he hardly ever fatigued of questioning people to find the answers he needed to find. By the end of the book he found what he was looking for, but it hit him much more subtly than he expected. Finding love hit him without him even knowing it, this is how his inner peace hit him as well. This section of the book taught me a lesson. I learned that things you re looking for may not always approach you how you would expect them to.