The Razor'S Edge Essays

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Somerset Maugham explores the different meanings of success, through the conflicting ideals of his characters.

The main characters of these stories are very different people, yet they are in search of similar goals. The main character of The Razor’s Edge is Larry Darryl. He brings joy to all, but in his heart & soul he isn’t happy.

Larry and Siddhartha go through several stages of their lives, which range from rich to poor and back again. He feels that he can learn any more from the wise men of his village because he has acquired all of their knowledge and they don’t know everything. A group of Samanas enters his village and intrigues him.

When he and Govinda leave Govinda tells Siddhartha of Gotama (the enlightened one) and they go to see him.

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When Govinda leaves he tells the leader of the Samanas and he becomes angered. Both men were loved by all who came into contact with them.Siddhartha takes everything that Gotama says to heart, but realizes that he must follow his own path. Both men reduced their living standards by freewill at one point in their lives.Siddhartha begins to look at the world differently. Certain teachers/guides have helped them find enlightenment.Do you think America was going through a transitional phase in the 1920's?What significant changes do you think occurred during this period?It would be highly unsuitable to lodge the hoi polloi ... However, Maugham makes each of his characters value success in only one way, without considering that in the real world every person values success in several different ways.My own definition of success is an example of this, because I value success through material accomplishments and through its intangibles.Siddhartha hypnotizes (a trick that he learned from the Samanas) the leader and he allows them to leave. They both forged special relationships with women living unholy lives.They find Gotama and all of his followers in Jetavana grove. After hearing him speak Govinda swears allegiance to Gotama. you live your life there is no earthly reward, he then goes back to America. Larry wants to feel fulfilled in life and he is searching for a way to do so. Each walked out on their respective lives in search of truth.He isn’t concerned with the other realm he begins to focus on the world as it is. Each man learned and practiced a form of meditation.The two men were very similar and were after similar goals, they just took different paths.


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