The majority of people today downplay knowledge and take it for granted due to the fact that they think it is easy to gain. In reality, numerous young people tend to resist acquiring knowledge and would rather amuse themselves with video games, tv or partying. However, authors Ray Bradbury and Stephen Vincent Benet would pity their indifference. In science fiction story, Fahrenheit 451, Bradbury informs the story of Guy Montag whose search for meaning and understanding leads him to make challenging choices throughout his journey. In “By the Waters of Babylon” a sci-fi story, a young boy, John, discovers the fact while on a journey to become a guy.
Both stories teach an important lesson about getting knowledge, that it can not be gotten passively-it needs sacrifice. Primarily, both stories reveal that the cost to gain understanding is to lose part of one’s old self. In Fahrenheit 451, we see the main character, Montag, doing actions that need him to abandon his old regimens. He had to quit his job, his other half, and his house to acquire the books and knowledge he so desires. Bradbury prices estimate Montag in his description stating, “You wish to quit everything? After all these years of working, one night, some ladies and her books-,” (page 51).
This quote reveals that Montag wishes to quit his task just for the sake of gaining books and discovering understanding so he can be happier. This is essential to acquire understanding due to the fact that it demonstrates how he had to abandon of all the things he did over numerous years since he can’t acquire understanding with the other glamorous life right in front of him. He required to let it go so he won’t return to it. Montag did not quit his job at that point (however did later) since of opposition from his wife, Mildred, however discovered that he needed to release Mildred due to the fact that she did not want to get knowledge.
Likewise, “By the Waters of Babylon” is like Fahrenheit 451 when approaching this idea of losing part of one’s old self. John, the primary character is on a journey to become a guy. He wishes to acquire knowledge and fact. He should go to a forbidden land where the Gods used to live, however quickly finds out that they were males prior to his time. Benet points out John in the following quote, “It is not for the metal alone we go to the Dead Places now– there are the books and the writings. They are tough to learn. And the magic tools are broken-but we can look at them and question. A minimum of, we can make a start,” (page 509).
This is when John discovers the fact and decides to abandon his old life. He finds this required because he understood the truth and understood that he can no longer follow his old life because it wasn’t real. He wants to make a new beginning and begin right where the “gods” left off however more slowly. He desires it slowly since he understands that excessive understanding will consume anyone up. All in all, both stories reveal that losing part of one’s old self is needed in order to get understanding. Without doing so, the journey will be harder. In addition, one need to take risks in order to gain knowledge. not end up lost other part