Gautama Buddha and Siddhartha Study Guide

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Chapter 1 – The Brahmin’s Son
Siddhartha Study Guide Questions
1. Why is Siddhartha unhappy? Why is his spirit like a “waiting vessel”?
A- Because he needs to find an answer to his questions. And the waiting vessel is because it just sits there not doing anything.
2. Why is Govinda willing to follow him?
A- Because he is his best friend. And he never wants to leave his side.
3. How are the Samanas described? From his description, how does the author feel about them?
A- The way he describes them sounds neutral.
4. How did Siddhartha convince his father? Why didn’t he just go?
A- He convinced his father by when his father rejected the thought he stayed still standing and waited until his father agreed.
5. Why, do you suppose, Siddhartha’s mother doesn’t have more of a role in the decision?
A- I feel like in those times woman didn’t have much leverage there.

Chapter 2 – With the Samanas
1. How does he act when he is with the Samanas?
A- Like he is one of them. But he later he still searches for an answer.
2. What is his goal? What happens when he reaches that goal?
A- His goal is to find enlightenment and achieve Nirvana.
3. How does Siddhartha meditate?
A- His meditations are long. He never eats when he does it. And he says the holy word Om.
4. What frustrates Siddhartha?
A-
5. Complete the quote: “I could have learned more quickly and easily ________________.” Explain this.
6. According to Siddhartha, what can one learn? Explain this.
A- According to him, one can learn whatever they wish to achieve enlightenment.
7. Who is Gotama? What does the author think of him?
A- Gotama is Buddha or the Illustrious One that Govinda goes to learn from.
8. What does Siddhartha do with the oldest Samana? What does that feat show?
A- Siddhartha wishes permission to leave to hear the teachings of another and the oldest Samana refuses and then Siddhartha ends up doing some sort of mind control and they leave.
Chapter 3 - Gotama
1. How is Gotama different from the Samanas?
A-
2. How do they recognize him?
A-
3. Why does Govinda choose to join him? Why won’t Siddhartha join him?
A- Govinda joins because of his teachings in enlightenment. Siddhartha won’t join him because he thinks that Gotama can’t show him the path to enlightenment.
4. According to Siddhartha, how will he find enlightenment
A- Through experience.
5. Gotama asks him if his, Gotama’s, followers will also find enlightenment. Siddhartha dodges this question. How?
A- By answering his question with another question.
6. What has the Buddha robbed from him? What has he given?
A- He has robbed him of his friend. And in return given him advice of some sort.

Chapter 4 - Awakening
1. What does Siddhartha decide to study? How is that the one field he has been ignorant in?
A- I guess that study he has ignored was the study of Love I guess.
2. Why does he feel an “icy chill”? He compares himself to a star. How is that so?
3. How is he different now?
4. What is the “Self”? Why has it occupied Siddhartha so?
A- His Self is his darkest self, I think. It is what distracts him.
5. When Siddhartha “awakes” from his dream, what does he see for the first time?

Chapter 5 - Kamala
1. How has his point of view changed? How does the writing style reflect this?
2. Complete the quote: “To obey...
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