Study Guide

The Orange Houses Life, Consciousness, and Existence

By Paul Griffin

Life, Consciousness, and Existence

Raise your hand if you've ever wondered: Are we really born this way? Can I blame my childhood (and my parents) for everything I don't like about myself? How much do things like war and violence change people? Yep, we thought so—it's part of human nature to think about these big head-scratchers once in a while.

The Orange Houses makes us ask ourselves these questions to think about what's happening to Jimmi, Fatima, and Mik in their everyday lives. Jimmi thinks about this stuff all the time, searching for the meaning of life, while Mik grapples with a private life versus one that includes other people and Fatima quests for freedom. The question is, then: Do any of them find answers? 

Questions About Life, Consciousness, and Existence

  1. Jimmi wants to know if life is worth living. What conclusion does he reach? Is his life worth it to him in the end?
  2. Do you think the war is to blame for Jimmi's addiction to drugs and his depressed state? How much does he blame his experience overseas for his troubles?
  3. Jimmi writes on his arm "the essence of the is." What do you think that means? How does it connect to his philosophy on life? 

Chew on This

<em>The Orange Houses </em>suggests that all people are born the same, but are shaped by their different experiences.

Jimmi actually wants to keep on living the whole time, but he only realizes how much he values his own existence when it's under attack. 

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