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 ...
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 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").
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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.
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