Hermann Hesse's moving and inspirational chronicle of spiritual evolution, "Siddhartha", includes a new introduction by bestselling author Paulo Coehlo in "Penguin Classics". "Siddhartha" is perhaps the most important and compelling moral allegory our troubled century has produced. Integrating Eastern and Western spiritual traditions with ...Read MoreHermann Hesse's moving and inspirational chronicle of spiritual evolution, "Siddhartha", includes a new introduction by bestselling author Paulo Coehlo in "Penguin Classics". "Siddhartha" is perhaps the most important and compelling moral allegory our troubled century has produced. Integrating Eastern and Western spiritual traditions with psychoanalysis and philosophy, this strangely simple tale, written with a deep and moving empathy for humanity, has touched the lives of millions since its original publication in 1922. Set in India, "Siddhartha" is the story of a young Brahmin's search for ultimate reality after meeting with the Buddha. His quest takes him from a life of decadence to asceticism, from the illusory joys of sensual love with a beautiful courtesan, and of wealth and fame, to the painful struggles with his son and the ultimate wisdom of renunciation. Hermann Hesse (1877-1962) suffered from depression, endured criticism for his pacifist views, and weathered series of personal crises which led him to undergo psychoanalysis with J. B. Lang; a process which resulted in "Demian" (1919), a novel whose main character is torn between the orderliness of bourgeois existence and the turbulent and enticing world of sensual experience. This dichotomy is prominent in Hesse's subsequent novels, including "Siddhartha" (1922), "Steppenwolf" (1927), "Narcissus" and "Goldmund" (1930) and his magnum opus, "The Glass Bead Game" (1943). Hesse was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1946. Paulo Coelho was born in Brazil and has become one of the most widely read authors in the world. Especially renowned for "The Alchemist and Eleven Minutes", he has sold more than 100 million books worldwide and has been translated into 66 languages. If you enjoyed "Siddhartha", you might like Hesse's "Steppenwolf", also available in "Penguin Classics". "A subtle distillation of wisdom, stylistic grace and symmetry of form". ("The Sunday Times"). "A writer of genius". ("The Times").Read Less
Near Fine in Wraps: shows only the most minute indications of use: just a hint of soiling to the panels and a tiny, stray pen mark at the upper front hinge; mildest rubbing; else flawless. Binding shows barely discernible lean, while remaining perfectly secure; text clean. Very close to 'As New'. NOT a Remainder, Book-Club, or Ex-Library. 8vo. 140pp. New Translation by Rika Lesser. Introduction and Notes by Robert A.F. Thurman. (Barnes & Noble Classics). Trade Paperback. Hesse's Siddhartha is a beautiful book, a narrative of one person's lifelong quest for self-understanding, it is extraordinary. The translation I thought was also good. I'm glad that the translator avoided the Western convention of using "ego" rather than "I", as was explained in the preface, and the prose is clear and flowing. A modern classic of the perennial human spiritual quest.
Very good. No dust jacket as issued. Condition near fine. Has lg. cover f/b fold, Name pr. on top of text. Otherwise a very nice copy. Clean, square. Fast shipping. 153 p. 19 cm. The New classics series, 34..
First Edition Thus; First Printing indicated. Very Good in Wraps: shows indications of careful use: shows mild rubbing; light wear to the extremities; the binding shows a little lean, while remaining secure; the pages have tanned somewhat, due to aging; there is a hairline crease at the backstrip; the text is clean. Structurally sound and tightly bound: clean and presentable. NOT a Remainder, Book-Club, or Ex-Library. 8vo. 152pp. Translation by Hilda Rosner. Mass Market Paperback. Set in India, Siddhartha is subtitled an "Indic Poetic Work" and clearly it does owe much to both Buddhism and Hinduism, however the philosophy embodied in Siddhartha is both unique and quite complex, despite the lyrically beautiful simplicity of the plot. Siddhartha is one of the names of the historical Gautama and while the life of Hesse's character resembles that of his historical counterpart to some extent, Siddhartha is by no means a fictional life of Buddha and his teachings. Siddhartha is divided into two parts of four and eight chapters, something some have interpreted as an illustration of Buddhism's Four Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path to Enlightenment. Elements of Hinduism can also be found in Siddhartha. Some critics maintain that Hesse was influenced largely by the Bhagavad Gita when he wrote the book and that his protagonist was groping his way along a path outlined in that text. Certainly the central problems of Siddhartha and the Gita are similar: how can the protagonist attain a state of happiness and serenity by means of a long and arduous path? Hesse's protagonist, however, seeks his own personal path to fulfillment, not someone else's. It is one of trial and error and he is only subconsciously aware of its nature. Although many see Siddhartha's quest as embodying the ideals of Buddhism, Siddhartha objects to the negative aspects of Gautama's teaching. He rejects Gautama's model for himself and he rejects Buddhism; Siddhartha insists upon the right to choose his own path to fulfillment. The primary theme of Siddhartha is the individual's difficult and lonely search for self-fulfillment. Both the means used by the hero in his quest and the nature of his fulfillment are of prime importance and reflect recurring themes that thread their way through all of Hesse's work. Although Siddhartha listens with great respect to the words of Buddha and does not reject Buddhism as being right for others, he, himself, does not become Buddha's disciple, but decides to pursue his goal through his own effort, not by following a teacher. As in Demian, Nietzsche's influence is apparent; the reader is strongly reminded of Nietzsche's Zarathustra who exhorts his listeners not to follow him, but to excel themselves. Siddhartha's sense of fulfillment is a mystical one and cannot be defined with precision. In this respect, it resembles the Nirvana of Buddhism. The most important aspect of Siddhartha's growing awareness, however, is an unselfish and undirected love. The division of the world into the two opposing poles of masculine and feminine is another common theme in Hesse's writings. The Father World, or masculine, is dominated by the intellect, reason, spirit, stability and discipline; the Mother Word, or feminine, by emotion, love, fertility, birth, death, fluidity, nature and the senses. While this symbolism is more pronounced in other works, such as Demian and The Glass Bead Game, it is also present and consistently developed in Siddhartha. Siddhartha's position vis-a-vis the two worlds changes during the course of the novel. At times, he seems to embrace one world more than the other; at other times he unites the virtues of each. Two symbolic elements thread their way through Siddhartha; that of the river and that of a smile. Suggestive of fluidity as well as the paradoxical union of permanence and flux, the river is an age-old symbol of eternity and spiritual communion. A second important symbol in Siddhartha is...
Hesse is a fine writer and I have enjoyed his Steppenwolf since my college reading many years ago. Siddharta is a fine introduction to
the Buddha's life and philosophy. It was an excellent read after I completed my course on Buddhism (by The Great Courses set of DVDs)
A wonderful way to get the feeling of this religion in any comparative study of the 5 great religions.
Mar 3, 2010
Read this and loved it. Bought it on a suggestion from a friend and I couldn't put it down. This is a book that will forever stay in my collection.
Mar 5, 2009
An eloquently written book about the spiritual journey.
Aug 19, 2008
Powerful and Transcendent Simplicity
This short novel following the adventure into enlightment by one Siddhartha Gautauma is a pure example of Hesse's story-telling genius. No wonder it helped to launch an intellectual revolution in the 50s and 60s. The prose, like a parable, is utterly accessible, the plot compelling-a boy on a journey through life stages towards enlightement, and links this to modern, andyet timeless, sensibilities for finding oneself, transcending the materialistic quandries, and loving humanity. A must read for everyone from Junior High onward!
Aug 8, 2008
I gave this to a dear friend, who prefers books on CD to listen to rather than read. She told me she thought it is a wonderful story told in an excellent way.
Copyright in bibliographic data and cover images is held by Nielsen Book Services Limited, Baker & Taylor, Inc., or by their respective licensors, or by the publishers, or by their respective licensors. For personal use only. All rights reserved. All rights in images of books or other publications are reserved by the original copyright holders.