Siddhartha Questions and Answers
by Hermann Hesse

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 In Siddhartha, what lessons do the Samanas teach Siddhartha?

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Tim Mbiti eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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While Siddhartha was among the samanas, he learnt the ascetic way of life, whereby he was able to achieve a higher level of self discipline and abstinence from worldly pleasures. He gave away his clothes and dressed in the loin clothes like the samanas. He was then exposed to extreme whether both hot and cold seasons and he suffered the pain due to these conditions but he persevered until he overcame the harsh situation. He developed the ability to perform deep meditation where he was able to detach himself from both senses and memories. However his goal was to achieve Nirvana but he believed the samanas would not offer him much help on his ultimate quest. On informing the eldest samana of his departure he performed a feat that he acquired from the samanas and he was able to hypnotize the elder samana successfully.

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aura4 | Student

Samanas taught Siddhartha  how through meditation he can take his mind to feel the essence of nature,death and life and embrace its originality.

Siddhartha , however, felt that despite being able to meditate well,he would always come back to same thoughts about life again and again and he started feeling restless as he was after he listened to the Brahman preachings in his village.

Siddhartha a could not see himself getting any answers to his questions so he decided to leave Samanas to search for Buddha.

mkcapen1 | Student

The Samanas, at first, teach Siddhartha to reject other things in life for the temperance of his body.  He is able to sit back and learn that he has the ability to mentally endure starvation to gain control of his mental intellect.  Siddhartha learns patience and that if he searches for innner peace he will have it.  They teach him to abandon the need to own things and that materialism does not bring happiness.

Siddhartha later comes to question their teachings and leaves the sect because he sees that the eldest of the Samanas has not ever found the total enlightenment which he has sought.  Through Siddhartha's journey he experiences many different things.  Finally, he comes full circle and realizes that he spent too much time searching so hard to find that which was his to have all along.  The teachings of the Samanas have shown him that to be satisfied is the inner peace.

sdfgasdfsdafsdafsadf | Student

They don't really teach him anything but he learns that he cannot learn from them and chooses to move on.