Finding Peace in Siddhartha
"I have become distrustful of teachings and learning and that I have little faith in words that come to us from teachers." (Page 18) Siddartha experienced this when he was with the Samanas, still seeking for peace of the innersoul. He distrusted teachings because to attain peace, he must learn everything from himself. However, along his journey, he was indebted by a beautiful courtesan, a rich merchant, a dice player, a Bhuddist monk, and Vasudeva, for they had influenced him and he gained great knowledge from each of them.
After leaving Gotama, the Illoustrious One, Siddhartha entered the life of a human being. He met a beautiful courtesan named Kamala and asked her to teach him the art of love. She said anyone who came to see her must be wealthy and therefore, she wouldn't teach Siddhartha for he was just a ragged Samanas. She introduced him to a rich merchant named Kamaswami and from this man that Siddhartha learned to trade and became rich. Obviously, Siddhartha came back to see Kamala and she accepted him. They learned the game of love together and she taught him many many love lessons that she knew. From her that he learned love could not be forced, people could buy love, ask for love, but could not steal love. He also learned that people must grow old and die and that there was no endless life. Together, Siddhartha and Kamala had a son, Siddhartha, who could not love anyone, loved his son with all of his heart.
Kamaswami, a richest merchant in town, hired Siddhartha as his assistance and from this man that Siddhartha tasted the taste of wealth. Kamaswami taught him how to trade, how to use the money, get money and everything that involved business. With his cleverness, Siddhartha comprehended everything quickly and used the money he acquired to buy gifts for Kamala. From a ragged Samana, Siddhartha became more brosperous everyday. He tasted riches, passion and power, but always remained a Samana in his heart because he had no interest in business.
As he became wealtier everyday, Siddhartha had stopped being a Samana in his heart; he began to play dice for money and jewel for he felt the excitement, pleasure, happiness through each game. Then, Siddhartha suddenly realized that he was leadinga strange path and he felt that life was flowing past him but did not touch him. "His real self wandered elsewhere, far away, wandered on and on invisibly and had nothing to do with his life . He was sometimes afraid of these thoughts and wished that he could also share their childish daily affairs with intensity, truly to take part in them, to enjoy and live their lives instead of only being there as an onlooker." (Page 58) Although Siddhartha entertained himself through each game of dice, he also learned numerous of things from being a dice player.
Tired of living a normal life, Siddhartha left everything behind and went to the river where he once crossed to become an ordinary person. There, he met his childhood friend, Govinda, who halted in his pilgrimage and stayed behind to guard him. Siddhartha was grateful and felt the love he suddenly had for his childhood friend. Govinda taught him the love of friendship, the clemency, the compassion, and lenience between people and people.
Siddhartha spend the last stage in his journey with the ferryman named Vaseduva. They worked, lived, and learned everything together. "Many travellers, when seeing both ferrymen together, took them for brothers." (Page 88) Siddhartha and Vasudeva were both assiduous students of the rive. They would sit for hours listening to the thousand voices from the river and learned everything from it. Vasudeva taught Siddhartha the patience of listening and hte attentiveness, but most of all, Siddhartha leanred everything from the river. After the distress of his son, Siddhartha and Vasudeva sat and listed to the river and finally, they attained peace.
When he reached peacefulness, Siddhartha became the ferryman. He delivered people across the holy river just like Vasudeva once did and yet, deep within himself, there was an eternal peace. On the other hand, Govinda was still struggling with desire for knowledge and had not yet attained what he was seeking, so he came to learn from Siddhartha. Surprised when he heard Siddhartha mentioned the five considered teachers Siddhartha had during his quest for peace, Govinda thought Siddhartha was joking. Saw the confusion in his friend's face, Siddhartha told Govinda to bend and kiss him on the forehead and as Govinda did this, he understood everything Siddhartha had said. Siddhartha, whose smile was similar to the Illustrious One's, finally attained peace for his Self.
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