What Does it Mean to You?

How do you find a sense of peace (Nirvana) in life and is it worth finding?

How do you find peace in life? Is it by being with a certain person? Being in a place or doing a specific thing? Or is it an idea or kind of teaching? To me, it can be any of these things–it can be all of them– because finding your sense of peace, or Nirvana is subjective. I believe that Nirvana is not one specific thing, it can be a multitude of different things and finding what your Nirvana is differs from person to person. In a complicated fast-paced world, I believe that it is beneficial to find a sense of comfort or peace so it doesn’t feel like you’re aimlessly drifting through life without purpose.

Understanding what Nirvana is and how to find it is difficult to do because no one can tell you how to reach it–you have to figure it out for yourself. As clearly shown throughout all of Siddhartha, there is no one clear path to finding peace; sometimes you have to double back and retrace your steps before continuing on your journey. Finding your Nirvana is also difficult because until you are able to associate it with a personal meaning, it’s just a meaningless word; you can’t find Nirvana if you don’t know what it means to you. One of my personal Nirvanas is reading because it allows me to forget about everything going on around me –both the good and bad– and focus on immersing myself in the story where I feel at peace. Understandably, not everybody’s Nirvana can or will be reading because people can feel more at peace while doing different things. For example, in the beginning of Siddhartha, both SIddhartha and Govinda decide to listen to the Gotama’s teachings to see whether they believe in them. Govinda was enamored by the Buddha’s teachings and felt compelled to stay with him because he believed that this path would lead him to Nirvana. However, Siddhartha, while he enjoyed listening to Gotama’s teachings, still felt unsatisfied and knew that he would not be completely at peace if he stayed. Overall, while understanding the general meaning of Nirvana may be simple, finding Nirvana is not definitely not as easy. 

Finding peace in life is difficult. How could it not be? There’s no guidebook, no rules, and you can’t rely on other people for help because not everybody’s idea of peace is the same. So why exactly is finding a sense of peace worth it? My answer is that you should always try to strive for more in your life. Finding your Nirvana will only help you become a better person and maybe even learn how to handle stress. In my opinion, when you find your Nirvana, you can become more focused on improving your life because the sense of peace that you’ve found provides you with clarity and eases your mind. Personally, my Nirvanas have greatly improved my life because they’ve helped me deal with stress and also taught me things that I didn’t know about myself. Whatever your Nirvana may be, it is almost definite that it will help you in some aspect of your life or another and that it will help you get to know yourself a little bit better.

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