Man's Search for Meaning in Fight Club and Siddhartha Essay

Man's Search for Meaning in Fight Club and Siddhartha Essay

Length: 2411 words (6.9 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

In 1922, Hermann Hesse set the youth of Germany free with the glorious peace of Siddhartha. Nearly a century later, Chuck Palahniuk opened the eyes of countless Americans with his nihilistic masterpiece, Fight Club. These two novels were written in different times, in different cultures, for different readers, and for different purposes. One is the poster child for love of self and nature; the other focuses on the destruction of both man and culture, yet the two hold a startling similarity in their underlying meaning, that in a darkening world of sin and distraction, letting go is the only true path to freedom, peace, and happiness. Though vastly different, Fight Club and Siddhartha both essentially tell the same story of man's search for personal meaning.

Siddhartha is the story of a young man who leaves established society to find and create for himself a true doctrine for bliss. Raised and trained as a Brahman in a well-established religious family, Siddhartha feels vain and incomplete. He departs from his people and their lore, peacefully searching for his own dogma, what Hesse refers to as "The Self". "Siddhartha embarks on a journey of self-discovery that takes him through a period of asceticism and self denial followed by one of sensual indulgence ("Siddhartha" 255)." Siddhartha soon finds, however, that nirvana is not so easily attained. Hesse follows Siddhartha through his lifelong journey of mental confusion, emotional turmoil, physical pain and pleasure, and, ultimately, spiritual unity between himself and the world. In short, it is "Hesse's attempt to restore his faith in mankind, to regain his lost peace of mind, and to find again a harmonious relationship with his world ("Siddhartha" 262)."

Fight Club also is...


... middle of paper ...


...uary 2003. http://www.newimprovedhead.com/club.htm

Freedman, Ralph. "Hermann Hesse". Contemporary Literature. 10: 3 (1969): 421-426.

Rpt. In Contemporary Literary Criticism. Ed. Carolyn Riley. Vol. 1. Detroit: Gale, 1973. 146-147.

Hesse, Hermann. Siddhartha. New York: Bantam, 1971.

Margetts, Jayne. "Fight Club". Between the Lines. Ed. Wendy Cavenett. 27 April

1998. 19 February 2003. http://www.thei.aust.com/tssmusic1/contents.html

Palahniuk, Chuck. Fight Club. New York: Henry Holt, 1997.

Sahni, Chaman L. "Siddhartha". Masterplots Complete. CD-ROM. Englewood Cliffs: Salem, 2000.

"Siddhartha". Novels for Students. Ed. David Galens. Vol. 6. New York: Thomson Gale, 1997. 255-275. 16 vols.

Wake, Bob. "Fight Club". Culture Vulture. Ed. Arthur Lazere. 21 September 1998. 19

February 2003. http://www.culturevulture.net/Books/FightClub.htm

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Search for Meaning in Siddhartha Essays

- Search for Meaning in Siddhartha      Siddhartha is a young man on a long quest in search of the ultimate answer to the enigma of a man's role on this earth. Through his travels, he finds love, friendship, pain, and identity. He finds the true meaning behind them the hard way, but that is the best way to learn them. He starts out by finding friendship with his buddy, Govinda. They have been friends ever since their childhood. There are really close, like each other's shadow. They have traveled and lived most of their life together....   [tags: Hesse Siddhartha Essays]

Powerful Essays
731 words (2.1 pages)

Victor Frankl's Life and Work "Man's Search for Meaning" Essay

- March 26, 1905 marked the birth of Viktor Frankl in Vienna. He was a son to Gabriel Frankl and Elsa Frankl from Marovia. He was the second born in a family of three and wanted to become a physician when he grew up. He was turned to study psychology by his liking for people. He met Freud in 1925 on his way to graduating and published an article “Psychotherapy and Weltanschauung”, which was followed by the use of the term “logo therapy” in a public lecture the following year. This led to his refining of his particular brand of Viennese psychology....   [tags: Man's Search for Meaning]

Powerful Essays
1385 words (4 pages)

Victor Frankl's Search for Meaning Essay

- The eight elements that brought meaning to Victor Frankl’s life was his intense inner life, camaraderie, his manuscript, spiritual well-being, his attitude, humanity, faith, comforting or soothing images of the past, and fate. Intense inner life: I believe that Frankl was constantly in the mindset of the doctor he was. He was continually thinking of ways to keep his mind busy. Helping others, thinking of ways to ration his bread, obtaining medicine for the typhus patients, inspiring others, or hiding comrades Frankl kept his mind busy....   [tags: Man’s Search for Meaning]

Powerful Essays
2311 words (6.6 pages)

Free Siddhartha Essays: The Search in Siddartha

- The Search in Siddartha "Siddartha" is a book of a man’s struggle to find his true self. But his searching leads him in all the wrong directions. Then finally after a long journey he stops looking. During his search he discovers four things, what the “oneness” of life is, how the four noble truths affect everything, enlightenment, wisdom and love. On page 142 and 143 Siddartha realizes that Atmen or the “oneness” of life is in everything. That no matter who you are whether the Buddha, the dice player, or robber, “everything is Brahman.” Even a rock is said to have Atmen, because eventually the rock would dissolve and become material for a human body....   [tags: Hesse Siddhartha Essays]

Free Essays
535 words (1.5 pages)

Siddhartha's Search for Inner Peace Essay

- Siddhartha's Conflicts  Hermann Hesse's Siddhartha tells the story of a young man who sets out in search of his true self.  Throughout the novel, Siddhartha continues to search for the true meaning of life.  He sacrifices everything, almost to the point of self-destruction, before finding what he is really looking for.  The element of conflict helps build the plot and leads to the turning point, Siddhartha's discovery.  Siddhartha faces conflicts with his peers, his religion, and himself.          Siddhartha has several conflicts between himself and his peers.  Despite Govinda's love and adoration, Siddhartha knows that he must tell his friend to move on.  Siddhartha also meets Kamala, wh...   [tags: Herman Hesse, Siddhartha Conflicts]

Free Essays
310 words (0.9 pages)

Essay on The Search for Enlightenment in Siddhartha, by Hermann Hesse

- The story of Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse is a story of love , learning and the search of happiness for inner self. The main character Siddhartha has learned all that is needed from the holy books and his teachers but believes none has really helped him reach the enlightment he truly searches for. His only solution was to become free and leave his family and go where life takes him, which starts off by joining the Samanas , a group of priests who go through life by practicing asceticism....   [tags: Enlightenment, Siddhartha Essays]

Powerful Essays
558 words (1.6 pages)

Essay on Dr. Viktor Frankl's Man's Search for Meaning

- Dr. Viktor Frankl's Man's Search for Meaning 'He who has a why to live for can bear any how.' The words of Nietzsche begin to explain Frankl's tone throughout his book. Dr. Frankl uses his experiences in different Nazi concentration camps to explain his discovery of logotherapy. This discovery takes us back to World War II and the extreme suffering that took place in the Nazi concentration camps and outlines a detailed analysis of the prisoners psyche. An experience we gain from the first-hand memoirs of Dr....   [tags: Man's Search for Meaning Frankl Essays]

Powerful Essays
1059 words (3 pages)

Meaning of the River in Siddhartha Essay

- Meaning of the River in Siddhartha Siddhartha, in Herman Hesse's novel, Siddhartha, is a young, beautiful, and intelligent Brahmin, a member of the highest and most spiritual castes of the Hindu religion, and has studied the teachings and rituals of his religion with an insatiable thirst for knowledge. Inevitably, with his tremendous yearning for the truth and desire to discover the Atman within himself he leaves his birthplace to join the Samanas. With the Samanas he seeks to release himself from the cycle of life by extreme self-denial but leaves the Samanas after three years to go to Gotama Buddha....   [tags: Hesse Siddhartha Essays]

Powerful Essays
1196 words (3.4 pages)

Fight Club Compared To Siddhartha Essay

- Since the beginning of time, man has been on a quest to find his inner self. This topic has been the theme of many books and researches. This is no exception, in the 1959 book, Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse. In this particular story the main character, Siddhartha, is trying to find his ‘inner self’. He tries to accomplish this in many ways, one being self denial or destruction. This is also the case in the 1996 book, Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk, in which the main theme promoted is that destruction leads to purity....   [tags: essays research papers]

Free Essays
713 words (2 pages)

Essay on Search for Identity in Amy Tan's The Joy Luck Club

- Search for Identity in Joy Luck Club      Each person reaches a point in their life when they begin to search for their own, unique identity. In her novel, Joy Luck Club, Amy Tan follows Jing Mei on her search for her Chinese identity – an identity long neglected.   Four Chinese mothers have migrated to America. Each hope for their daughter’s success and pray that they will not experience the hardships faced in China. One mother, Suyuan, imparts her knowledge on her daughter through stories....   [tags: Joy Luck Club Essays]

Powerful Essays
1089 words (3.1 pages)