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Compare and Contrast Essay on Siddhartha

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DaeYong Jang Pd. 4th 12/6/2009 Siddhartha Compare-Contrast Analytical Essay 100 points All civilization that existed relied on some sort of monetary system from the start, and many people base their happiness on how much wealth they posses. However, many people who were wealth have reported that they are not as happy when they acquired less wealth. In the novel Siddhartha, however, Herman Hesse conveys that money does not necessarily bring gratification to one's life by comparing Siddhartha, the son of a Brahmin, with Kamala, the courtesan; then comparing Gautama, and Vasudeva, poor, yet enlightened ferrymen, with first comparison. In the chapter Samsara, Siddhartha transform his life from a poor shramana who begged for the living to a rich merchant who is living in a nice house, owns many servants, and finds lover. Yet as time passed he felt "disgust for himself, for his perfumed hair, the odor of wine on his breath, the tired flaccidity and the repugnance of his skin. ...read more.


old self before she met him; she sees that Siddhartha reached enlightenment by freeing himself from the materialistic world and by meditating. There, Kamala also finds inner peace by reuniting with her lover and dies in serenity. Comparing to Siddhartha and Kamala, who suffer from the temptation of wealth and power, Gautama and Vasudeva both are in a state of contentment even though they have little to no possessions. In the novel, Gautama is the first person Siddhartha meets that truly reaches the state of enlightenment. Herman Hesse describes Gautama as a monk that "went out into the city with [his] bowls to collect food for the midday meal, the only one of the day. Even the Buddha himself, the Enlightened One, was in the habit of making the beggar's rounds in the morning" (24), who has to rely on someone else to eat once a day like poor person. ...read more.


For a long time I have waited for this moment, for a long time I have been Vasudeva the ferryman. Enough now, the time has come. Farewell, hut, farewell, river, farewell, farewell, Siddhartha!" (106) and drops everything he owns and possesses and disappears into the wood, truly being one with the nature. From both characters we find that neither of them had almost any of what average people desire, but lived peacefully because they desired less. Both Vasudeva and Gautama lived with what was required to survive, and they knew that the more one has, the more one has more to worry about. In the novel Siddhartha, only the people who distanced themselves from the temptation of the wealth achieved the enlightenment. Herman Hesse makes a point in literature that the inner peace and happiness do not origin from the wealth. He illustrated this point by contrasting Vasudeva and Gautama's simple life style with Siddhartha and Kamala's lavish life. So what does bring contentment to people's life? Herman Hesse suggests that we should desire less of the physical material. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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