Siddhartha Essay

Topics: Gautama Buddha, Religion, Buddhism Pages: 2 (715 words) Published: January 3, 2014
Siddartha is a religious and spiritual novel written by Hermann Hesse. Siddartha, the novel’s protagonist, has the ultimate goal of reaching enlightenment and the full understanding of the world and himself. He plans to do this by trying out several different religious philosophies by which he comes across in his lifelong journey. Throughout the book, the author describes each of Siddartha’s stages in his life and people who he encounters. The three major stages in his life consist of a search for knowledge and religion, lust and senses in the material world, and total enlightenment. Siddhartha's quest took his whole life to complete.  The novel begins with Siddartha living with his father in ancient India. He is the son of a Brahman, although is secretly unsatisfied with his life and feels something is missing. He and his friend, Govinda, agree to follow a religious group called the Samanas, although Siddartha’s father does not approve. The Samanas believe enlightenment is reached through asceticism. They walk the streets almost naked and beg for food. Siddartha and Govinda learn the ways of the Samanas rather quickly, but Siddartha is still unsatisfied with his new way of life. All he has learned was to “think, wait, and fast,” and he has found it useless. The Samanas hear about the Buddha named Gotama, who he has attained enlightenment. Siddartha and Govinda leave the Samanas to follow the teachings of Gotama. They’re taught the Eightfold Path, the four main points, and other parts of the Buddhism religion. Siddartha is still yet unsatisfied with this way of life and questions Gotama’s teachings. Although they fulfill his logical wishes, the teachings will not bring him any closer to enlightenment. Siddartha leaves Govinda and Gotama to rather learn from the pleasures of the material world. Siddartha becomes a student of lust under a beautiful young woman named Kamala, and finds employment under a merchant named Kamaswami. Soon enough,...
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