Figurative Language In Hermann Hesse's Siddhartha

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In Siddhartha, by Hermann Hesse, Siddhartha struggles throughout his life to attain his goal of enlightenment. Just like everyone, Siddhartha started by following his teachers and mentors. But as he became more experienced and formed his own opinions, he began to lead himself to his goal instead of following others. Although following in the footsteps of another to reach a goal is much more simple, Hesse uses characterization and figurative language (similes and metaphors) in order to show that people who lead themselves to their goal will gain more wisdom and knowledge than following another.

As people, we are all prone to follow the easiest route to success, even though we might not achieve as much if we lead ourselves. Most people begin
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Siddhartha characterizes people who follow as “Most people are like a falling leaf, that drifts and turns in the air, flutters and falls to the ground”(72). Siddhartha uses a simile to describe people as leaves because when a leaf falls it flutters around and falls. The same happens to people who follow others. They eventually encounter a hardship, begin to fall, and move around without any success until they fail. Instead we should be like “rocks in water”(59) or “stars that travel in one defined path”(72). These metaphors show that we must find the path that will leads us as fast possible to our goal, hence the rock sinking in water. But, we must learn from the journey we take to achieve our goal, like a star that not only moves but shimmers. Siddhartha found his path by listening to the river, and we can find it as well by leading ourselves towards our ultimate goal.

Siddhartha works to lead himself to his goals, as we must also try to do. If we lead ourselves and encounter a hardship, we will not fall back as if we were following, but we learn from it and add to the knowledge gained from our journey. This lesson is actual to us in all phases of life: school, friends, and work. We should always try to keep Siddhartha’s model to reach our final goal and gain knowledge on the
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