However, Gene has no proof that Finny returns the feelings of hatred. Gene feels he must exceed Finny, so he wobbles the limb. The animosity within Gene takes over, only now he becomes aware that the hatred does not return. Finny is flawless. He loves Gene like he loves everybody else.
Morrie was one who was never ashamed of showing emotions. The recurrent hugs and kisses that he gave to Mitch were sincere forms of gratitude, which ultimately began from his childhood, since he was deprived of sentiment. Morrie's past forever changed his outlook on life, as he spread his message of loving one another. Morrie's most important saying was, "The way you get meaning into your life is to devote yourself to loving others and creating something that gives you purpose and meaning." Morrie lived by this quote, as he loved to spend time walking and conversing with friends.
Gene resents how Finny is naturally talented. His resentment causes him to be offended by the comments Finny makes questioning how Gene needs to study to do as well as he is able to do in school. Gene says, “It seemed that he had made some kind of a parallel between my studies and his sports. He probably thought anything you were good at came without effort” (58 Knowles). Gene puts a lot of effort in to his academic ability, and in return it far exceeds Finny's.
Gene in the first part of his quote seemed strong, but when he twisted it to make Finny, his best friend look bad, he still seemed to be morally weak, but in a more stronger moral state then before. “ Now I knew that there never was and never could have been any rivalry between us. I was not of the same quality as he.” (Pg. 51) This quote showed a completely changed Gene. Gene became stronger by realizing the reality, he now had realized that there was no use in competing with anyone.
In the book there were multiple rivalries and a lot of envy between Gene, Finny, and Brinker. In the book,‘A Separate Peace’, Gene is very envious of Finny. At the beginning of the story, Finny called gene his best friend and Gene said nothing. Gene couldn’t handle the fact that Finny was more compassionate, athletic, and so perfect. “Phineas could get away with anything.” In order to protect himself from accepting Finny’s compassion and risking emotional suffering, Gene creates
Finny concocts some nonsense excuse, at which Mr. Patch-Withers is taken by surprise, and does not punish Finny. Finny and Gene come up with the idea for a "Super Suicide Society of the Summer Session," a group for exciting and dangerous things. Gene goes onto the diving limb with Finny, and loses his balance; Finny stops Gene from falling, and Gene soon realizes that his friend saved his life. Some of Finny and Gene's friends begin to join their new club. Finny makes up a game called "blitzball," sort of a variation on rugby and football; the game is a hit that summer.
Phineas is the best friend of Gene . In chapter four of the novel Gene pushes Finny out of a tree and Finny breaks his leg. Subconsciously, Finny knows how the accident occurred but is the type of person who wants to believe that all of life is carefree, he hates to acknowledge that a person could actually hurt another. We see a great deal of this attitude when Finny constantly refers to WWII as something created by old fat men in order to keep young boys from having to much fun. After the accident at the tree Gene attempts to tell Finny that it was him who caused the accident, but Finny refuses to believe Gene.
Gene declares “I took a step toward him, and then my knees bent and I jounced the limb. Finny, his balance gone [...] hit the bank with a sickening, unnatural thud” (Knowles 60). Gene does this profound action because he is jealous of Phineas and also infuriated by the fact Phineas is not jealous of Gene in the slightest bit. Gene thinks, “He had never been jealous of me for a second. Now I knew that there never was and never could have been any rivalry between us.
Consequently, this created opposition within Gene’s mind. Gene both admired and envied Finny. Gene detested Finny’s constant and sanguine attitude toward life because it epitomized a serenity that he could never achieve because of his own insecurity. Phineas had this mindset that permitted him to see life from a different point of view. “The Devon faculty had never experienced a student who combined a calm ignorance of the rules and a winning urge to be good, who seemed to love the school truly and deeply, and never more then when he was breaking the regulations, a model student who was most comfortable in the truant’s corner (Knowles, 16)”.
Gene is a very intelligent young man, however he has the tendency to over evaluate situations. His best friend Phineas, or Finny, is the opposite he acts on impulse and is a excellent athlete. This approach to situations Gene takes leads him to the conclusion that his best friend, Finny, is attempting to decimate his academic goals. This thought takes Gene down the path of jealousy and the idea of avenging himself. A day comes when Finny asks Gene to join him atop the tree the army uses for training.