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Meaning Of Life Essay

1024 words - 5 pages

The “meaning of life” is a question asked time and time again. There is no definite, agreed upon answer. Authors try to give their best interpretation in the countless novels that ponder this seemingly simple, yet complex question. Novels give the story of a character’s journey through life. The audience is given a glimpse into the right and wrong decisions the characters make along the way. Without the bumps in the road, the plot line would be boring. No one wants to read a novel in which everything goes perfectly. The adventure is what draws the audience in. The “meaning of life” is learning to take each hardship and learning how to make the best of the situation. One cannot go through ...view middle of the document...

James becomes a sullen teen after the death of his mother. He no longer wishes to visit the lighthouse. Throughout the novel James starts to take on the qualities of his father. When James realizes the loneliness both him and his father are feeling their relationship is positively impacted. He comments on this, “that loneliness which was for both of them the truth about things” (Woolf 188). Both men hold in their emotions sticking to their masculinity. Using the word “both” James is acknowledging them as being on the same team. As the boat nears the lighthouse, James responds positively, “He was so pleased that he was not going to let anyone take away a grain of his pleasure. His father has praised him” (Woolf 191). James has been secretly waiting for this compliment since he was a young child. The “pleasure” he feels boosts his self confidence and mood.
Self-pity is seen throughout both novels. Mr. Ramsay falls into a pit of self-pity when Mrs. Ramsey dies. He is digging for flattery from Lily. Lily questions “why he needed always praise; why so brave a man in thought should be so timid in life; how strangely he was venerable and laughable at one and the same time” (Woolf 41). Lily does not understand how a smart man cannot have confidence in himself. Moll Flanders always tries to evoke the emotion of pity in her audience. Moll has no guilt for her actions because she feels they are not through her own fault. “Let them remember that a time of distress is a time of dreadful temptation” (Defoe 209). This explanation makes it sounds as if Moll has no other alternative to stealing. The temptation was undeniable. Succumbing to your problems is not learning to life. During this time in both character’s lives they are not living out “the meaning of life.” Only when they are able to overcome these situations, are they living a truly meaningful life.
Moll overcomes the obstacle of...

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