Back to: Jonathan Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach
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Jonathan is one of kind individual who wants to achieve greatness in terms of flying. It is unperturbed by its own physical limits and is driven by a desire to achieve perfection.
Jonathan is punished by the less ambitious peers and sent to live as an outcast. Soon, he develops his skills in isolation and finds a path to a new realm where greatness is celebrated.
He learns from the best in this realm and then returns to share his gifts of wisdom and knowledge with young gulls. It becomes a great teacher but is troubled by his growing status as a divine being in the world.
One day, Jonathan disappears into the blue sky after passing on his responsibilities to Fletcher, his student. The rest of the flock raise Jonathan’s status as a deity and write hymns in its praise.
In the end, Jonathan returns to continue his teaching. He finds Anthony who rejects myths and just wants to fly higher and further. Jonathan then offers to teach Anthony as he sees the same fire of desire in Anthony.
Chiang is the most accomplished flier that Jonathan ever meets in the story. It becomes Jonathan’s teacher in the new realm and instructs him to find perfection in flight. Once, Jonathan’s training is complete, Chiang leaves him with the lesson to try and help others find happiness and peace.
A gull with independent thinking, Anthony refuses to believe in the myth of Jonathan without evidence. However, it is troubled by its own limitations and decides to end its own life. In the end, he is interrupted by Jonathan itself and decides to learn from its new mentor.
Fletcher is the first student of Jonathan and its best one also. Fletcher is also excommunicated form the flock like Jonathan and shares the same ambition to fly high and wide.
Fletcher takes up Jonathan’s role as an instructor once Jonathan departs and soon finds itself worshipped as a disciple of the divinely held Jonathan by the rest of the flock.