Looking for Alaska Looking for Alaska discussion


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the great perhaps

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Audrey Looking for Alaska
the great perhaps (my definition):
its not a search or adventure,not a chance or luck, but i state of mind and self;
the great perhaps isn't a moment or a memory.
to me the great perhaps is when your life is just the way it feels like it was meant to be, it is that time in your life where you look back and see all the decisions you made and how they impacted your life and you wonder what you life could have been life (the perhaps) but you realize you dont care what it could have been like because you love your perfectly imperfect life! it isnt something you seek and i think Miles realizes that at the end. The Great Perhaps is contemptuousness. The Great Perhaps is a state of mind and self where you no longer wonder or dwell on the Perhapes, and you would rather be how you are now than question the Perhaps.

What do you think the Great Perhaps is?


message 2: by Nate (last edited Apr 01, 2011 09:46PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Nate I think the Great Perhaps could be a turning point in your life. A point in which you realize that the things you once thought were so important don't really seem all that relevant anymore. Maybe it's the point of maturaity, maybe its the point of discovery of ones self, maybe its the point of understanding where we fit into this world, or maybe the Great Perhaps is never meant to be known.
Maybe we aren't suppose to live our lives in anticipation of a Great Prhaps, but rather live for each and every moment....


Edith Riegler Audrey wrote: "Looking for Alaska
the great perhaps (my definition):
its not a search or adventure,not a chance or luck, but i state of mind and self;
the great perhaps isn't a moment or a memory...."


dude, this is deep. and I'm gonna agree with you here


Emily I think that in life we have multiple great perhaps-es


Ridhi Vohra Great perhaps is the feeling of completeness. It may be in finding love, job, friend, success. It is a chance which led to the feeling of wholeness.


message 6: by Ramona (last edited Feb 26, 2012 02:22PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ramona Boldizsar ...i hope it's beautiful

This Great Perhaps we are talking about is something we ought to have, something we need and wish to achieve. I can guess that The Great Perhaps is indeed... just a Great Perhaps, perhaps we will, perhaps we are, perhaps we will do something. What makes it so great it's the fact that this Perhaps is ours/mine by definition. I have my own Great Perhaps, you have yours. It has a meaning of a life. We all seek for a Great Perhaps, whatever that is. Its main point is that it is Subjective.


Magshuff A Great Perhaps: In my mind, this is the small possibility that fate will give you exactly the right thing. So many people change themselves and their paths in hopes if ending in exactly where they want to be in umph number of years from now. But screwing with fate is not going to give you The Great Perhaps. Fate must choose you and lead the way through life's obstacles. You'll walk life blindly, and then, one day, fate will take your hand and guide you. It will take you somewhere. "I don't know where there is, but I believe it's somewhere, and I hope it's beautiful." That, I believe, is the Great Perhaps. Nothing more, nothing less.


Nickey Vu NO COMMENT


Michaela Francois Rabelais last words were "I go to seek a Great Perhaps". He said this at the end of his life. In the book, religion is pretty prominent. Did it ever occur to anyone else that they were trying to mean that the Great Perhaps meant heaven, or the afterlife, something like that.


message 10: by Geff (new) - rated it 3 stars

Geff I think the Great Perhaps refer to something like a huge choice that you have to make that will either bring you happiness or sadness. Alaska's great perhaps is probably her death. She chose death (note: I strongly believe it was a suicide) as her solution because she thinks it's her great perhaps.


message 11: by Aria (new) - rated it 5 stars

Aria I think the great perhaps is the end were everything fits together and Is perfect but no one will ever reach the great perhaps because nothing is ever perfect and the end will never come because time is infinite. Even when the universe is destroyed time will not end and thus is the greatest mystery of life


message 12: by Aria (new) - rated it 5 stars

Aria The end is the great perhaps but the great perhaps will never be reached even though it is the main principle of human life. We develop new technology so future generations can use that technology to make more technology. For what? We are like kids trying to impress an adult we are constantly trying to prove how advanced and intelligent we are but why? We are just all here due to a strange concoction of certain atoms being in certain places causing a life form which spends the first 25 years of their lives trying to prepare ourselves for a future which we will spend earning money so our own children can continue the cycle just so the tiny little specks that are us can keep toddling along with our little lives in search of a great perhaps or perfect future that will never happen and the human race is only a tiny evnt in an infinite spam of existence that is time.


message 13: by Bernie (last edited Apr 30, 2014 12:05PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Bernie Life is full of possibilities, there are thousands of different paths your life can take (the labyrinth), to me the Great Perhaps is finding the right/best one. Being the best version of yourself.


message 14: by Iga (new)

Iga Cydejko In my opinion Great Perhaps is something that will turn out the most important thing in your life : person, career, passion, thing, place. The feeling of finding that is amazing and defines your whole life. Great Perhaps is for the people, who are not scared of life and don't treat it too seriously.
I used to have this definition when I was 15 and it's still unchangeable. Still it is one of the most important quotes in my life, that I was even supposed to tattoo it.


message 15: by [deleted user] (new)

To be quite honest, I believe that 'the great perhaps' can be whatever you want it to be. I don't think that there is an universal definition, and that you have to define it yourself. Or maybe not define it at all, just leave it be...


message 16: by June (new)

June Carlo Audrey wrote: "Looking for Alaska
the great perhaps (my definition):
its not a search or adventure,not a chance or luck, but i state of mind and self;
the great perhaps isn't a moment or a memory.
to..."



too deep. but nevertheless best definiton


message 17: by Lucymay (new)

Lucymay I think a great perhaps is when you are exactly where you want to be and you have got there by working hard and changing your life drastically


Maria Our life is a labyrinth filled with choices but it always has the same format. The Great Perhaps, however, changes our labyrinth's layout. It makes it much prettier, and more worth exploring it. Some people may have had their Great Perhaps and others hadn't. But, sooner or later, the labyrinth will come to a dead end and there is no way of escaping it. The thing is that if you have conquered the Great Perhaps, your dead end will be worth going through the whole labyrinth. I think that if you actually put thought into it, you can find your Great Perhaps. Just like Miles did.
Sorry if this is confusing, if you get what I'm saying you'll see the deep meaning. Once again, I applaud John Green for using the theme the Great Perhaps when writing this book.


I'mogén What wonderful reaponses!


message 20: by Mark (new) - rated it 5 stars

Mark A. For me the great perhaps is all about taking a chance at life and seeing how great your life might be if you do. In my opinion it is the chance you take when you walk out the door and try to be unique, authentic, and brave.


Mochaspresso Mark wrote: "For me the great perhaps is all about taking a chance at life and seeing how great your life might be if you do. In my opinion it is the chance you take when you walk out the door and try to be u..."

All of the responses have been great, but I think I agree with this one the most. I feel as if The Great Perhaps represents hope and faith. The hope and faith that you have as you go through life.


message 22: by Aly (new) - rated it 4 stars

Aly The great perhaps is when you know who you want to be too


Literarycat Audrey wrote: "Looking for Alaska
the great perhaps (my definition):
its not a search or adventure,not a chance or luck, but i state of mind and self;
the great perhaps isn't a moment or a memory.
to..."


Nate wrote: "I think the Great Perhaps could be a turning point in your life. A point in which you realize that the things you once thought were so important don't really seem all that relevant anymore. Maybe i..."

I agree with a lot that you both say. I think the great perhaps is that moment when we are less consumed with the minor things in life and stop worrying about those minor things, but look at life as a big picture. The Great Perhaps is the beginning to realization that the world in infinite but we ourselves are finite. We have limits, we cannot expect to know and understand everything that happens in life. Its a moment when we come to accept things as they are. A moment when we look at life and understand there will be struggles and turmoil mixed in with moments of happiness. Not only understand those things, but accept them as a part of life, our lives and learn how to move forward and not let those struggles and turmoils pull us down. I guess it pulls into the idea that others have said about hope and faith.


Journey Hamm A great perhaps is a singular event everyone seeks to which there life's true destiny is defined. Unfortunately, this isn't realistic. A great perhaps can happen to people in small, segmented pieces, eventually leading up to your true potential. Adolescents are the ones who push this concept of a great perhaps, since they have yet to experience the world in its true, jumbled and messy structure.


Jackballoon I'm still pondering.


Jacob Billotti A Great Perhaps is when one has come to peace with oneself. In Looking for Alaska, Alaska symbolizes a great perhaps. This is why the main character, Miles Halter is looking for Alaska. The famous writer/scholar of the Renaissance Rabelais' last words were "I go to seek a great perhaps. That is why I am going; so I don't have to die to start searching". A great perhaps is not a eureka moment, which are featured in An Abundance of Katherine's, also by John Green. a great perhaps can also be interpreted as enlightenment which is a common theme in Buddhist religion.


message 27: by Zoe (new) - rated it 5 stars

Zoe Willingham I believe the great perhaps is when you can find the good in an obstacle in your life. For example, I'm dealing with depression. My great perhaps is being with my friends. Even though no one else but my best friend know what I'm dealing with, I still have bright spirits when I'm around them. The great perhaps is knowing how to deal with rough times.


Noelia I think the gret perhaps is related to freedom and maturity, the point in your life when you look back, see all the decissions you´ve taken and then look forward seeking all the ways possible. The great perhaps mean the self´realization when you realise you can be anything, that there is a world full of aopportunities, of questions without answer, of people who will light up your world. It´s the mental state when yu are self-conciuss that every decission you take will lead you to a new decission.


message 29: by Zahra (new) - added it

Zahra Jeraj The Great Perhaps in my opinion is finding yourself and being able to do what you want. Alaska seemed like a really broken person and finding herself is exactly what she needs but it does relate to all college studnets because they are trying to find what they want to do. I think Great Perhaps can be your final destiation in the point of view of who you are and what you want to do and settling down but not physically, I mean in an emotional and mental state. Knowing exactly who you are down to the core. Not just your intersts and hobbies and what you like and dislike but something even beyond all that.


message 30: by Anne (new) - rated it 5 stars

Anne Niño I believe that the Great Perhaps is the final destination of your voyage. Seeking your true definition in this world.


message 31: by Eva (new) - rated it 5 stars

Eva Miles is 'seeking' for a Great Perhaps, and the book is called 'looking' for Alaska, so I think Alaska is his Great Perhaps.


Zahwa i think the great perhaps is kind of like exploring life and seeing different kinds of people and stories; life is full of possibilities and chances so he's looking for the best possibility that fits him maybe?


Mihika Audrey, your definition was good!


message 34: by Birosh (new) - added it

Birosh Kshetrimayum The great perhaps :

The word great reveals that the author find it the most valuable and most treasured. When compared with the rest, it occupies the podium.

He is probably talking of a possibility. He is in anticipation of something good to happen.


Priyamvadha According to me great perhaps is taking the risk to acheive something which is of great importance to you for your life


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