Self-discovery in Siddhartha
Siddhartha, the novel by Hermann Hesse is what can be included as
one of the epitomes of allegorical literature. This wondrous novel is
focused on the tribulations of Siddhartha through his quest for inner peace.
He started out as a young Brahmin's son always thirsting for more
intellect and perspective in his life and from there on he endured many
transitions. Siddhartha let himself experience all forms of life in his
society. He unhesitatingly learned more about how different people lived
by stepping into their shoes. He gained the vast varieties of intellect
and perspective that he had longed for through his diversity, and he
shrewdly applied it to compose his accurate philosophies of everyday life.
Siddhartha's character exemplifies the insatiable feeling that
everybody harbors. He stood for a unity of individuals. He stood for
their thirst, and most importantly he stood for their ultimate quench; He
stood for the insatiable feelings that all people have and need to
As the Brahmin's son, Siddhartha could not contain himself. He was
restless and felt that he had learned all he had to learn amongst his
elders, and he was right. He chose to follow another path in life, a path
that would show him another part of how people in his world lived.
Siddhartha did not allow himself to stick to something that he could not
feel to be right, thus he could not stay and worship the gods his father
worshipped. He, as discontent people long for, set out to search for the
internal happiness that he had not redeemed yet.
As Siddhartha wandered through his multiple phases in life, he
learned overwhelming aspects. He seemed so above the common people, yet he
discovered that he became more and more like them. He too had
uncontrollable feelings of emptiness. The next life that Siddhartha
embarked on was his life with the Samanas. In those years, he learned to
try to control himself, and he learned to feel spite towards materialistic
people. He was given a different view of life, but he still was
discontented. He felt he had learned enough of spiritual discipline and
again changed his path in life.
Siddhartha had heard of the Great Buddha as if he was a true and
worthy idol. He set out to learn his teachings with total anxiety, but he
soon learned that it was not what he wanted to pursue. "You have learned
nothing through teachings, and so I think, O Illustrious One, that nobody
finds salvation though teachings...(p27)"