Analysis of Herman Hesse's Siddhartha Essay

Analysis of Herman Hesse's Siddhartha Essay

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Herman Hesse’s Siddhartha describes the journey and maturation of Siddhartha. Siddhartha is a young Indian, whose journey to find internal peace takes him to many different places. One of these is the city, where he soon accumulates a large fortune. Wealth and material possession haunt Siddhartha and hinder him from attaining internal peace. This is also demonstrated Brahmin village where he is unhappy with the rituals, and sees wealth and material goods destroying him Herman Hesse uses Siddhartha demonstrate that success is not derived from material wealth, but from personal successes that may have nothing to do with wealth.

Siddhartha, a member of the wealthy Brahmin Caste, is unhappy due to his inability to achieve nirvana. Siddhartha appears to be perfect, possessing the good lucks, charm, and intelligence. This is what all Brahmins wish to possess. The young Brahmin cannot be taught anymore by the Brahmin teachings and rituals, and this makes him discontent. Siddhartha believes that knowledge is required to attain Nirvana and he feels that he is held down by his material possessions. One ritual he becomes disillusioned with is the ablution ritual because “…they did not wash off the sin, they did not heal the spirit's thirst, they did not relieve the fear in his heart.” (5-6).His goal is to achieve enlightenment and he knows it will be difficult with the limited knowledge he has learned from the Brahmins. Siddhartha knows that achieving internal peace will be very hard and while Siddhartha is meditating near the river, he realizes that there must be an efficient method to enlightenment.

Siddhartha, after realizing that the Brahmins will not aid him in achieving his ultimate goal, joins the Samanas. This brief stay wit...


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...e chased his son. Siddhartha is soon reminded by the river of how he left his own father. He continues to listen to the river and he beings to see people from different walks of life. These images soon flow together, and begin to make a single sound, Om. Siddhartha realizes that the earth is intertwined and now is spiritually complete.

In Siddhartha the main character, Siddhartha, is only at peace with himself when he is the poorest. Siddhartha’s namesake means one who has achieves their goal. This is part of the web of symbolism left by the author to demonstrate that wealth does not necessarily bring one joy, and that it may even destroy one’s self. This is cooperated by Siddhartha’s numerous self destructive behaviors in the city which occur after the acquisition of his fortune. It is only after Siddhartha becomes a lowly ferryman, that he displays the smile.

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