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Baoyu was sent by his grandmother to a new garden so as to cheer him up. The new garden was being built by his grandmother – Jia. Here, his grandmother wanted the Baoyu to experience something special – something that could only be achieved in the Green Delight. Her understanding of the environment in Green Delight was one of the major reasons why she opted to have Baoyu go to the garden.
This was done in a bid to cheer him up after the death of his best friend. Apparently, Baoyu’s best friend – Qin Zhong, had passed away. A few days after Baoyu had gone to the garden, Jia Zheng came to visit his daughter. He was accompanied by a team of men who arrived at the garden to conduct and assessment. This was to be done through inspecting the various sectors of the garden (Cao, Hawkes, Minford, & Gao, 2.36).
Men also wanted to get inscriptions about their personal experiences from the garden. During the men’s’ visit to the garden, Zheng and other people who had accompanied him ran into Baoyu. Earlier, Zheng and his men had been told of how good Baoyu was when it came to writing couplets. Zheng decided to test Baoyu’s talent by having him write a couplet about the garden.
He asked Baoyu to develop a couplet that would bring out the qualities of the garden. Later, Zheng belittled efforts by Baoyu and scolded him for his criticism of the suggestions that had been given by Zheng’s men. However, they continued to be pleased with Baoyu’s talent in regards to composing couplers and providing appropriate names for the garden. (Cao, Hawkes, Minford, & Gao, 2.36)
Baoyu’s Life in the Garden
The descriptions of the garden clearly show that its landscape provided the viewer with a beautiful and very luxurious scenery. The author has dedicated a great deal of time to explain about the setting of the Green Delight. Here, the author aimed at ensuring that the reader was able to familiarize with the setting of the garden. Creating this understanding was important as it would help in understanding the impact of the garden in regards to reformation and the process of healing.
Despite the main aim of sending a boy to inspect the garden as a way to recollect himself after the loss of his best friend, sending Baoyu to the garden was also a means to broaden and stir his creativity (Cao, Hawkes, Minford, and Gao, 2.44). When he finally settled at green delights as his residence, Baoyu spent quite some time with his maids and cousins and his life became enjoyable to such an extent that he and his maids produced four garden night poems to reflect the carefree mood they lived in.
For Baoyu, moving into the Garden with the girls was such a great experience and he was extremely content with his life. Everything appeared to be more relaxed in the Garden than when he was living at home. His happiness is clearly obvious from the four poems he produces while spending his time there. The poems soon became popular among the people around him and they urged him to write even more poems.
His happiness, however, subsided into boredom after a while and he slowly started getting entertained with forbidden books about love that were brought to him by one of his servants. Despite being warned about bringing those books into the Garden, Baoyu remains defiant and does so anyway.
Here, the author tries to form the background of an analysis where the character of Baoyu is becoming more and more questionable. Although Baoyu was in an environment where he was expected to be presentable, his actions remained questionable. (Cao, Hawkes, Minford, and Gao, 2.51)
Green Delights as an Architectural Dwelling
From the descriptions given in the book, Green Delights appears to be such an amazing place of abode. The author of the book has been successful with regards to presenting the setting of the garden. Here, the author presents details that can aid the reader in formulating a mental picture of the garden (Cao, Hawkes, Minford, and Gao, 2.57).
This is one of the techniques that the author has employed in presenting the cool environment that existed in Green Delights. The garden is presented as on of the best places where a person can opt to relax and unwind. The garden is quite and peaceful – able to provide a relaxing environment, unlike the other busy and noises place around the mansion.
Green Delights as a Community
The boundaries in the garden are relaxed and there is peace in the society within the garden. Peace is evident in the setting of the garden as well as the interaction between different people. For instance, one cannot how the coordination between the mains and other people within the garden accounts for peace.
The maids interact with the authorities in respect and these accounts for the efficiency of service within the boundaries of Green Delight. The people being served are also satisfied with the nature of service being provided by the maids. Here, the quality of the work being done by the maids improves as they get to interact with other people within the Green Delight. The arrangement of the garden and the manner in which people interact with nature in Green Delight is also an important element of the peace in the garden.
The gardeners have taken their time to ensure that the garden is in the right setting and the garden continues to bring the relaxing serene in Green Delight. Interactions between the different people in Green Delight also accounts for the harmony in the surrounding. (Cao, Hawkes, Minford, and Gao, 2.66)
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Since moving to Green Delights, Baoyu’s life changed drastically. His encounter with so many people changed his perspective of many things completely. As stated earlier, Baoyu was initially able to broaden his thinking and managed to nurture his writing skills and used them to the benefit of the community. His interesting poems were liked by many and everyone was yearning for more. This went on for as long as he felt motivated to continue doing the same.
His passion later died and he immediately began losing his integrity. His servants noticed his boredom and decided to offer an alternative form of entertainment (Cao, Hawkes, Minford, and Gao, 2.70). He started reading forbidden books about love and despite being cautioned, he kept on carrying the books to the garden.
The more Baoyu continued to stay at Green Delight, the more he continued to change. This change is presented as a reaction to the surrounding at Green Delight. Basically, the author tries to present the impact of the surrounding in the garden to character reformation.
Green Delights Reflection of Baoyu’s Character and Values
Since moving to Green Delights, Baoyu’s life changed drastically. His encounter with so many people changed his perspective of many things completely. As stated earlier, Baoyu was initially able to broaden his thinking and managed to nurture his writing skills and used them to the benefit of the community. His interesting poems were liked by many and everyone was yearning for more.
This went on for as long as he felt motivated to continue doing the same. His passion later died and he immediately began losing his integrity. His servants noticed his boredom and decided to offer an alternative form of entertainment. He started reading forbidden books about love and despite being cautioned, he kept on carrying the books to the garden.
Clearly, Baoyu was slowly losing touch with these values and according to some women who surrounded him, he certainly needed reform. Other women, however, were simply sympathetic to his condition at the time. Daiyu, one of his closest friends seemed to be hurt as if she had been greatly affected herself.
The charmingly nurturing and yielding Aroma, on the other hand, appeared to be someone who has just got herself into Baoyu’s life for her own ambitions. To some people, this was no news as they had already visualized it coming way back. (Cao, Hawkes, Minford, and Gao, 2.76)
Later, in a discussion with Aroma, Baoyu wished that he could die in the presence of all the women and had his corpse float on the women’s tears to a faraway place where even a bird could not fly to. This is a clear indication that Baoyu was equally displeased with his own life and felt that he had no reason to live. His experiences in life must have greatly contributed to his thinking in this manner.
As it has been discussed in this essay, it is clear that one’s character can be easily influenced by the surrounding environment. It only had to take Baoyu from his quiet environment to a more vibrant one that his life was completely transformed. Sadly, the transformation was mostly negative.
Baoyu’s situation depicts a common scenario of one starting quite well in life but loses direction along the way. From being an innocent young man, he slowly veered towards the wrong and undesirable path.
Cao, X. and Hawkes, D. and Minford, J. and Gao, E. The story of the stone: a Chinese novel Vol. 2. Virginia: Penguin Books, 1973. Print.