The half closed eyes of the Buddha and the slowly sinking Sun summary and exercise


The half-closed eyes of the Buddha and the slowly sinking Sun summary and exercise | Class 12 English Notes | NEB

Before reading    

Discuss the following questions.    

a.What does a Nepali tourist guide think about foreign tourists?

 Ans. They are guests. Thus they are gods.

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b.What do common Nepali people think of a fair-skinned foreigner?

 Ans. Nepali people think that a fair-skinned foreigner is superior.

c.Why do you think foreign tourists visit Nepal? 

Ans. I think, they visit Nepal to see varieties of diversities in Nepal.

Understanding the text

Answer the following questions.

a.How does the tourist describe his initial impression of the Kathmandu valley?

Ans. The tourist describes the initial impression of Kathmandu as a beautiful valley with green geometric field, earthen houses of red, yellow and white, scent of soil and mountains and age-old peacefulness in the atmosphere.

b.According to the tourist, why is the West indebted to the East?

Ans. According to the tourist, east has given the religions, the puranas, images of brass and ornaments of ivory, manuscripts of palm leaves and inscription of copperplate,also gave them a civilization and its wisdom and garlands of jasmine around the necks.

c.How does the tourist interpret the gaze of the monks and nuns?

Ans. The tourist interprets the gaze of the monks and nuns as saymak gaze, which means pure and without contamination sight that perceives everything in it's true form.

d.Why do the tourists think Nepali people are wonderful and exceptional?

Ans. The tourist thinks Nepali are wonderful and exceptional because all the people of different religions, cultures and races are living together with peace and harmony.

e.What are the different kinds of communities in the Kathmandu valley and how do they coexist with each other?

Ans. Hindu and Buddist are the different kind of communities in Kathmandu valley. They coexist with each other happily unconcerned by the variety of their gods, religion and philosophies.

f.What does the tourist feel about the temple of Adinath?    

Ans. The temple of Adinath is dedicated to both lord Shiva and Buddha: So the tourists feels this, as the living example of Nepali's tolerance and coexistence.

g.Why does the guide take the tourist to the remote village?

Ans. The guide takes the tourist to the remote village to show him the pulse of our reality and make him remind the visit of Nepal forever.

h.What does the innocent village couple think of the doctor?

Ans. The innocent village couple thinks that the doctor arrival were preordained and he is the eldest son, who has brought a life-restoring remedy across the seven seas for his younger brother.

i.What are the differences between the paralyzed child and his sister?

Ans. The child is paralized; his whole body is useless and only his eyes indicate that he is actually alive. But his sisters body functions properly.

j.Why does the guide show the instances of poverty to the tourist?

Ans. The guide shows the instances of proverty to the tourist to show him the pulse of our reality and to show the complete beauty without any expression of the poverty.

 Reference to the context

a. Which narrative technique is used by the author to tell the story? How is this story different from other stories you have read?

Ans. Shankar Lamichhane, the author, uses the stream of consciousness as a narrative technique to narrate the story "The Half-closed Eyes of the Buddha and the slowly Sinking Sun." 

This story differs from other I've read since most other stories are told in the first person,with the narrator or persona describing the events in his own work, however this story is told through the monologs of two characters, a tourists guide in Kathmandu valley and a foreign tourist. Furthermore, unlike traditional stories, the story uses a stream of consciousness technique to capture what the two protagonists think rather than portraying actions and events. In this context, stream of consciousness is a writing style ot storytelling approach that reflects the natural flow of a character's extended mental process, frequently by including sensory experiences, recollections, unfinished thoughts, unique syntax, and sloppy grammar. This approach of stream of consciousness, on the other hand, is not found in any of the prior stories I've read.

b. How is the author able to integrate two fragments of the narration into a unified whole?

Ans. The author of the story "The Half-closed Eyes of the Buddha and the slowly Sinking Sun" attempts to integrate two pieces of narration into a unified whole by connecting them with instances of eyes and associating them with two separate universes. The author is detailing events that are happening in the community as well as activities that people do for a living. On the other hand, he ties it to the world of farmers, where people are uninformed of the real world and suffer from a variety of traditional beliefs and diseases.

Thus, by connecting two separate worlds or conceptions of the East and the West, the conveys the message that one should picture things deeply through their deeper eyes and comprehend. To draw the true meaning of the circumstance, he associates the guide's journey with the tourist and watches the things on the one hand, and the guide explaining the meaning of the places and activities through examples of eyes and his narrative techniques of stream of consciousness on the other. 

c.The author brings some historical and legendary references in the story.

Collect these references and show their significance in the story.

Ans. In the story, the author Shankar Lamichhane bring some historical and legendary references. The following are the references and their significance:

  • The mention of Manjushri and his sword stroke at chobhar, which caused the Bagmati River to overflow, represents her contribution to allowing people to live in the valley.
  • The puranas, depictions of brass and ivory ornaments, palm leaf manuscripts, and copperplates inscriptions all demonstrate that the Nepalese people are rich in cultures, traditions, religions art and crafts.
  • The eyes of the shaven-headed monks and nuns represent 'the samba gaze', which implies pure and unconstrainated perception; a sight that perceives everything in its genuine form.
  • The mentions of princess Bhrikuti and King Amshuverma illustrate historical ties or relationships with neighboring countries such as Tibet.
  • The beautiful light of the sunset reflected in the Buddha's eyes shows Nepal as a country of Buddha with many more hopes and peaceful sentiments in the people.
  • The Adinath temple is a live example of Nepalese tolerance and togetherness.

d.The author talks about the eyes in many places: the eyes of the shaven monks and nuns, eyes in the window and door panels, the eyes of the Himalayas,the eyes of the paralyzed boy, the eyes of the welcoming villagers and above all the half-closed eyes of the Buddha. Explain how all the instances of eyes contribute to the overall unity of the story.

Ans. In the story, the author talks about the eyes in many places such as the eyes of shaven monks and nuns indicating 'the samba gaze' which means the sight that perceives everything and its true form. The eyes of the carried lattice windows,the eyes painted on the door panels, the eyes on the stupas, the eyes of the people, the eyes of the Himalayas, the eyes of the paralyzed boy, the eyes of the welcoming villagers and above all the half-closed eyes of the Buddha; these all instances of eyes indicate that it is a land of eyes, a land guarded by the half-closed eyes of the lord Buddha. Even if all of the world's history books were destroyed today, but these eyes which display a new culture, civilization, religion, natural beauty and the land of Buddha. The journey becomes meaningful by the memories obtained by the eyes.

In this way, the author connects various instances of eyes to memories that people acquire and peoples appetites that nover come true as they imagine something with their inner eyes and hearts, and therefore, unites the story as a whole.

 Reference beyond the text 

a. Write an essay on Living Proximity to Nature.

Ans. Nature refers to the physical world and everything in it. It is an important and integral part of mankind. It is one of the greatest blessing for human life. However, nowadays humans tail recognize it as one. Nature has been as inspiration for numerous poet, writers, artists etc. Everything wegetinourlifeisgivenbythe nature. Nature has ability to protect us and it is also powerful enough to destroy the entire mankind.

Staying close to nature improves physical, mental and spiritual well-being. It makes us feel alive from the inside and we should not compromise it for recent development like urbanization, technology or social media. The study found those who live around Greener areas have improved feeling of happiness, self-worth, overall life satisfaction and lower death rates due to difficult diseases like cancer, depression and respiratory diseases. There are more relaxing and serene things in nature like, the smell of fresh and pure.clean air, chirping of birds, beautiful views of painting of stars in the sky.

Nature of healing power too, it recognizes the body's inherent ability to heal itself. Also people live close to nature, their lives being to change in ways that they never thought possible. The closer you line to nature, the happier you'll be. The nature can improve our concentration by giving our brain a well-needed break. 

People have to learn to live in harmony with nature thereby protecting the environment and other living beings that inhabit the earth. Only when we learn to live in harmony with nature, we could expect nature to behave in the manner that has been there for several hundred years. When man indulges in affecting nature and its composition through pollution and deforestation, humankind will be forced to repent for generations. This should be avoid at any cost Every individual should take a vow to plant and raise at least 25 trees during one's lifetime as contribution to mothers nature. This is our responsibility to use the nature properly and protect it.

b. The story talks about ethnic/religious co-existence of different communities in Nepal, where the Buddhists and the Hindus and the Aryans and non-Aryans have lived in communal harmony for ages. In your view, how have the Nepali people been able to live in such harmony?

Ans. Nepal is a multi-lingual, multicultural and multi-religions country. Though Nepal is small in size it has the followers of different christions, religions. Muslims Most of and the people others. areAll Hindus, some are Buddist and some people are the people of different religion, regardless of the religion/ethnic group are enjoying and living happily without any conflicts and wars and shares their sorrows mutually so this describes the religious harmony in Nepal. 

We can found many examples of Nepali, how they are living in harmony. Swayambhunath, Adinath, Lumbini, Muktinath etc. are the common places for hindus and Buddhists followers. Every religion people shares best wishes and celebrate one another festivals. Hindus celebrate Eid of Muslims, Muslim put red tika on the occasion of Dashain; the greatest Hindu festival in Nepal. They also visits gumbas and Stupas that belongs to the Buddhism. And also the people belonging to Buddhism do the same. Christians also celebrate Teej, Dashain, Tihar and all other religions celebrate christmas. In Nepal, rather taking their religion as a priority,

people taske humanity and nationality as the main priority. They know how to remain in the harmony with each other. We can find some reasonl examples how Nepali people are being able to live in such harmony:

  • Every Nepali considers Humanism as the major religion.
  • All the Nepalese show respect honor and sympathy to all mankind either from any religion.
  • Every Nepali has learned to live as one, putting aside our belief system and religion.
  • Nepali and every are sentient kind, compassionate, beings. empathetic towards each other, environment
  • Nepal is a country of spiritual souls, a spiritual hub, and a country.


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